NCDOT will construct a new 1.1-mile, four-lane road with a median from Martin Luther King Jr. Drive south of Winston-Salem State University to Rams Drive (formerly Stadium Drive) at the Piedmont Triad Research Park. A new interchange will be built at U.S. 52, and the current interchange at Rams Drive will be removed.
Latest News and Updates
The N.C. Department of Transportation invites citizens who want to learn more about the Salem Creek Connector project in downtown Winston-Salem to attend a project update meeting on Tuesday, April 9, from 5 p.m.-7 p.m. It will be held in the main dining room of the Anderson Conference Center at Winston-Salem State University, which is located at 601 S. Martin Luther King Jr. Drive in Winston-Salem.
At the meeting, citizens can visit stations where NCDOT representatives will explain the purpose and benefits of the project, provide a project timeline and highlight innovative techniques the contractor will use to minimize the impact of construction on traffic. Citizens are invited to talk one-on-one with department staff to ask questions and share their thoughts.
The goal of the meeting is to share important information about major project milestones and show drivers how the project may affect them throughout its duration.
Project Overview and Purpose
The construction of the Salem Creek Connector includes:
- Constructing a new four-lane road with a median from Martin Luther King Jr. Drive south of Winston-Salem State University to Rams Drive at the Wake Forest Innovation Quarter;
- Building eight bridges mainly over parts of Salem Creek and U.S. 52;
- Constructing a new diverging diamond interchange at U.S. 52;
- Removing the current U.S. 52 interchange ramps at Rams Drive and Vargrave Street. The bridges will remain in place;
- Realigning multiple side roads and intersections, including Diggs Avenue and Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive; and Diggs Avenue and Vargrave Street; and
- Building a roundabout at Salem Avenue and City Yard Drive.
Benefits: The Salem Creek Connector will make it easier for citizens to access U.S. 52 from Winston-Salem State University, Salem Academy & College, and the Wake Forest Innovation Quarter. It will also reduce traffic congestion and improve pedestrian safety at WSSU, provide a direct route to a revitalized downtown and enhance motorist safety on U.S. 52.
- Design work, right-of-way acquisition and survey work currently under way.
- Utility relocation to begin in June.
- Construction to start in December.
- Completion scheduled for November 2015.
Design-Build Team: NCDOT has awarded a $68.9 million contract to the design-build team of Blythe Construction Inc. of Charlotte and Parsons Brinckerhoff Inc. of Charlotte for the project. The team was one of three short-listed design-build teams vying for the contract. NCDOT selected the team, because it offered the best value for the project cost.
The design-build method of construction allows NCDOT to award a contract to a team of designers and contractors simultaneously to design and construct a project to expedite its completion. This unique, all-in-one approach helps the department avoid cost inflation and allows the contractor to make innovations that save taxpayer dollars.
Partnership with Creative Corridors Coalition
NCDOT is working closely on this project and others in the downtown area with a nonprofit organization in Winston-Salem called the Creative Corridors Coalition. The mission of Creative Corridors is to make these roadway improvements more aesthetically attractive and reflect the city’s devotion to arts, culture and innovation.
In determining a basic layout for the Salem Creek Connector, NCDOT met numerous times with Creative Corridors to discuss the group’s ideas on how and where to incorporate features such as unique lighting, pavement design and landscaping. Through these meetings, NCDOT and Creative Corridors:
- Eliminated suggestions that did not meet federal construction guidelines;
- Agreed on design improvements such as decorative bridge railings that are considered a standard NCDOT construction option and do not cost more to include as part of a project; and
- Identified enhancements that do not qualify as standard NCDOT construction options and would require an outside entity (Creative Corridors, the City of Winston-Salem, etc.) to pay for the additional cost.
Creative Corridors is partnering with the Winston-Salem Urban Area Metropolitan Planning Organization, City of Winston-Salem and other local organizations to provide the additional funding needed for the upgrades and enhancements planned for the Salem Creek Connector project. These enhancements include patterned crosswalks, ornamental lighting, 5-foot-wide sidewalks and 10-foot-wide sidepaths, and landscaping, all of which will help achieve the goal of showcasing Winston-Salem as the City of Arts and Innovation.
Preparation for Business 40 Improvement Project
This project is one of several moving forward in Winston-Salem right now that will improve the detour routes NCDOT will use to keep traffic flowing while the Business 40 Improvement Project is under way. NCDOT will completely close 1.1 miles of U.S. 421/Business 40 from east of Church Street to east of Fourth Street for up to two years starting in 2018.
During that time, crews will remove the existing, aging pavement and replace it with new concrete pavement. They will also modernize the entrance and exit ramps, and replace most of the bridges on and over U.S. 421/Business 40 with new bridges that meet current traffic demands and modern design specifications.
This visualization shows from multiple perspectives how traffic will flow along the Salem Creek Connector.
Pat Ivey, NCDOT Division 9 Engineer
- Email: Contact Us
- Phone: (336) 747-7800
- Address: 375 Silas Creek Parkway, Winston-Salem, NC 27127
Resources for Local Property Owners
In many cases, it is inevitable that a certain amount of private property must be acquired. The displacement of homes and businesses is minimized to the extent practicable. The following brochures will answer questions about this process.