DURHAM – Work that is part of the Alston Avenue widening project in Durham will require a short weekend closure of a section of the road.
Starting Friday, Jan. 11, at 7 p.m., the contractor will be closing the road between Gann Street/N.C. 147 and Angier Avenue to install drilled shafts for a new CSX bridge. Engineers plan to reopen the roadway by 6 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 14, but will reopen it sooner if work is completed.
The detours will be as follows:
- Eastbound Alston Avenue – Turn right on Holloway Street, turn left on Elizabeth Street/Fayetteville Street, turn left on southbound Durham Freeway, take Exit 11/N.C. 55 to continue east on Alston Avenue.
- Westbound Alston Avenue – Turn right on southbound Durham Freeway, take Exit 10A/Briggs Avenue, turn left on northbound Durham Freeway, take Exit 12A/Fayetteville Street, turn right on Fayetteville Street/Elizabeth Street, turn right to Holloway Street and turn left to continue westbound on Alston Avenue.
To facilitate construction and deliver the project in a more timely and safe manner, Alston Avenue was closed to thru traffic between Main Street and Liberty Street for a 12-month period on Jan. 4. The full closure will enable the contractor to expedite the replacement of water and sewer utility lines located below the road.
NCDOT engineers held two meetings with area residents and business owners to share information about the long-term closure, upcoming work and coordination plans.
Though the longer closure will last for a year, it will be broken into two six-month-long stages. The first will be between Main Street and Taylor Street, which is expected to be open to local traffic by mid-summer. The second stage will begin after the first section opens and will shut down the road between Taylor Street and Liberty Street.
The project also includes the replacement of the Alston Avenue bridge over the Durham Freeway, which should be completed this winter. That will allow the reopening of all ramps at that exit.
More than a mile of Alston Avenue is being widened to improve safety along the road, and reduce congestion. In addition to the added travel lanes, sidewalks are being added to both sides of the road, as well as bicycle accommodations. Retaining walls and new railroad bridges are also included.
The improvements are needed because the road is expected to be used by 33,000 vehicles a day within the next 20 years. Part of the road will initially be striped for on-street parking upon project completion in 2020. A four-lane pattern will be implemented for the entire stretch of roadway when future traffic volumes warrant the additional lanes.
Real-time travel information is available through a variety of means at DriveNC.gov and the NCDOT Triangle Twitter feed.