Raleigh - Drivers in Durham will be getting an improved Alston Avenue (N.C. 55) to use, thanks to a $39.8 million Department of Transportation contract. The project, awarded to Zachry Construction Corp., a San Antonio, Texas company with an office in Morrisville, will widen and improve more than a mile of the highway to accommodate a four-lane median-divided road between the Durham Freeway and just north of U.S. 70 Business/N.C. 98 (Holloway Street).
These improvements are needed to reduce congestion and improve safety along that stretch of road, which is projected to be used by nearly 33,000 vehicles a day in the next 20 years. It is also a prime example of the type of highway projects that are a part of Governor McCrory's 25-Year Transportation Vision. Its goal is to enhance travel safety and to better connect North Carolinians to jobs, education, healthcare and recreation opportunities.
Part of the road will initially be striped for on-street parking at the conclusion of the project, with the four-lane pattern implemented for the entire stretch when traffic volumes warrant the additional lanes at some point in the future.
In addition to the added lanes, the project will include a widened bridge over the Durham Freeway, sidewalks on both sides of the road and either wider outside lanes to accommodate bicycles or designated bike lanes. There will also be the addition of retaining walls, railroad track work and new railroad bridges.
The project can get under way as early as Aug. 29, with the new road open by Nov. 1, 2019, and the rest of the work wrapped up by May 2020.
This is one of 12 projects worth $139.9 million recently awarded by the NCDOT. Per state law, the contracts were awarded to the lowest qualified bidder.