N.C. Department of
Transportation project to replace the U.S. 70/N.C. 50 bridge over U.S. 401 south of
Raleigh will require the closure of northbound U.S. 401 the weekend of Sept.
The contractor will be setting girders and
installing decking for the new bridge, so the closure is needed for safety
reasons. It will be in place from 9 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 6 through 6 a.m. on
Monday, Sept. 9.
Motorists will have a very short detour,
turning right on Mechanical Boulevard, and then left to get back on U.S.
70/N.C. 50 toward Raleigh.
Dane Construction Inc. of Mooresville was
awarded a $3 million contract to replace the 61-year-old bridge, which is
considered structurally deficient and functionally obsolete. That means it is
still safe for travel, but has been in deteriorating condition and needs to be replaced,
and that it was built to design standards no longer used for bridges.
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 will be on a new location just west of the current
bridge, eliminating the need for an offsite detour unless specific phases of
the project require the closure of the highway.
The new bridge is expected to be in place by
Dec. 1, with additional vegetation work completed by May 30, 2014.
Because of the traffic volume through this
intersection, almost all the work has been done at night. No lane closures are
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, and those closures can only take part on weekends.
This replacement project is part of the
NCDOT's $450 million state-funded bridge plan for 2011-13, 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.