RALEIGH – To improve safety at two busy Raleigh intersections, traffic lights are going up at Louisburg Road (U.S. 401) and Fox Road, and Litchford Road and Hunting Ridge Road.
The upgrades are because of the crash history at those locations and the growing traffic volume on the roads in a fast-growing section of Wake County.
The original plan for the intersection of Louisburg and Fox roads, which is near where Louisburg Road splits from Capital Boulevard, was to convert it to a Reduced Conflict Intersection (RCI), which would not allow left turns onto Louisburg Road from Fox Road and instead redirect drivers to go right; then if they want to go the opposite direction or cross over Louisburg Road to remain on Fox Road they would merge into a dedicated lane to make a safe U-turn. The current setup allows Louisburg Road traffic to travel through the intersection without stopping, while Fox Road has stop signs in both directions.
However, at a public meeting last year about this location, the local community overwhelmingly asked for an improvement sooner than the two to three years needed to design and construct an RCI. So, NCDOT is installing a traffic signal, which can be completed in six to 12 months, allowing for design and environmental work, as well as hiring a contractor and the installation.
The intersection of Louisburg and Fox roads is being worked on first, with utility line work underway to bring power in for the traffic lights. To speed up the time to get the lights operational, initially they will be on wood poles, with the contract calling for the lights to be on by June 14. Later the wood poles will be switched out for permanent metal poles.
The work on the intersection of Litchford and Hunting Ridge roads will follow, with the project expected to be completed by Oct. 30.
Because the roads are commuter routes, the contractor can’t close or narrow any lanes between 6 and 9 a.m. or 4 and 7 p.m. on weekdays.
During lane closures, or when a flagman is directing traffic, drivers are urged to slow down and use extra caution because of the nearby workers. They could expect possible delays while work is underway.