US 70 from Raleigh to Morehead City is gradually being turned into a new Interstate 42.

There are nice roads from New Bern to east of Kinston, from LaGrange to west of Goldsboro and a stretch around Clayton. Past Cayton there currently is heavy construction on 70 and on I40 into Raleigh. To avoid this, I take the new I795 from Goldsboro to near Wilson, then take 64/264 into Raleigh or to 540.

There is a 10-mile bypass in progress around Havelock and plans for a 21-mile bypass around Kinston. For many areas NCDOT plans to upgrade the existing four-lane highway piece by piece. They will eliminate driveways and intersections and replace them with bridges, interchanges, and new parallel service roads. The 5.1-mile section of U.S. 70 in James City, near New Bern, under construction, is a good example of this method.

Much has been done, much is in progress, and much to be done, is in development.
From what I can tell we are looking at 10 years or more until it is fully complete.

True full completion is a way off, but bypassing of Kinston and Havelock, along with other gradual improvements will make the drive from Raleigh to Morehead City much better, much sooner. This might start having a big impact on Carteret County, sooner vs later.