CHARLOTTE-Motorists using the outer loop of I-485 between I-77 and Rea Road in Charlotte will have access to the entire new third lane in time for the Thursday evening commute. Crews have been clearing the new lane since Thursday morning. The new third lane on the inner loop of I-485 from Rea Road to I-77 is on track to be fully available Saturday morning, weather permitting.
The new lanes provide relief to one of North Carolina's most congested roadways, serving over 115,000 vehicles per day.
The N.C. Department of Transportation originally estimated that the 9.2-mile I-485 widening project would be completed in November 2016. Construction of the $83.3 million project began in April 2013. "We're pleased that these new lanes are available to motorists 23 months ahead of NCDOT's expectations," said Division Engineer Louis Mitchell.
NCDOT reminds motorists to watch signs for construction information, stay alert and obey the posted speed limit. Some parts of the roadway may be rougher than usual. Due to seasonal limitations, crews will have to return in spring of 2015 to pave the final layer of asphalt.
For real-time travel information at any time, call 511, visit the NCDOT traffic website or follow NCDOT on Twitter. Another option is NCDOT Mobile, a phone-friendly version of the NCDOT website. To access it, type "m.ncdot.gov" into the browser of your smartphone. Then, bookmark it to save for future reference.
For more information, please contact the resident engineer at (704) 218-5125.