RALEIGH - Drivers using U.S.70/N.C. 50 overnight this week in south Raleigh could
encounter some lane closures near its intersection with Mechanical Boulevard. There
will also be a one or two night closure of U.S. 70 East, south of Tryon Road.
These traffic pattern changes are needed for the N.C. Department of Transportation project to replace
70/N.C. 50 bridge over U.S. 401.
The lane closures will allow the contractor to install new traffic
signals and set the cabling for those lights at the U.S. 70/N.C. 50/Mechanical
Boulevard intersection. The closures could be in place any time between 9 p.m.
and 6 a.m. beginning tonight through Friday morning. Police will direct traffic
through the intersection.
The U.S. 70 East closure is expected to be in place from 9 p.m. to 6
a.m. on Wednesday and/or Thursday night. Crews will do some paving work in
preparation for an upcoming traffic shift. Police will also handle traffic
control during that work, with vehicles detoured onto U.S. 401 South, then left
onto Mechanical Road to return to U.S. 70 East.
Work on the $3 million project to replace the 61-year-old bridge began
in late May, with the new structure expected to be in place by Dec. 1.
The old bridge was considered structurally deficient and functionally
obsolete. It was still safe for travel, but was in deteriorating condition and
needed to be replaced. It had also been built to design standards no longer
used and was unable to handle the increasing volume of traffic in that area.
The new bridge will have a higher clearance height over U.S, 401, and
there will be wider shoulders on the roadway approaching the bridge. It is on a
new location just west of the current bridge.
Because of the traffic volume in this area, almost all the work has
been done at night, with no lane closures allowed on U.S. 401, U.S. 70 or
Mechanical Boulevard between 6 a.m. and 9 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays, and
between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. on Sundays. The exceptions are when the roadway
needs to be closed for safety reasons because of the work being done.
This replacement project is part of the NCDOT's state-funded bridge
plan, which invests in preserving, repairing or replacing bridges statewide.
For more information on this plan, visit our Bridge Improvement Program webpage.
NCDOT reminds motorists to watch signs for construction information,
stay alert and obey the posted speed limit. Updated travel information is also
available by calling 511 or online at www.ncdot.gov/travel. In
addition, NCDOT now offers travel information on Twitter.