SHELBY-In an effort to enhance mobility and improve safety for motorists in Macon County, theN.C. Department of Transportationhas awarded a contract to add a truck turnaround and information station on U.S. 64/N.C. 28, near U.S. 23/U.S. 441/U.S. 64 in Franklin.
Currently, large trucks are not allowed to use this section of U.S. 64/N.C. 28 in Macon County. Some trucks, however, continue to use this route, despite warning signs. The existing road is a narrow, two-lane road with sharp curves and a steep grade, making it an unsafe route for truck drivers.
This project will provide a place where truck drivers can obtain alternate route information, as well as access a location for them to turn their vehicles around safely.
The turnaround lane will be accessed on the right side of U.S. 64/N.C. 28 eastbound via a right turn lane. The turn lane will be added to the existing road as part of the project.
Work can begin in February 2015. All work except for reforestation should be finished by August 2015.
Watson Contracting, Inc. of Franklin was awarded the $559,935 contract for the project.
To lessen the impact on the traveling public, there will be no lane closures on U.S. 64/N.C. 28 from 7-8 a.m. and from 3-5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Lane closure restrictions will also be in place during holidays and times when traffic volumes are higher than normal.
This is one of seven road and bridge contracts worth $139.8 million recently awarded by NCDOT for projects across North Carolina. The contracts were awarded to the lowest bidders, as required by state law. The low bids received on the projects were about $7.9 million below NCDOT estimates.