Project Overview and Purpose
Planning and development are underway to widen 4.5 miles of N.C. 105 between Foscoe and Boone as well as replace the Watauga River bridge on N.C. 105 in Boone.
Work would help reduce traffic congestion and crash rates as well as improve safety for bicyclists.
Work on the project would be divided into two sections:
Watauga Bridge Replacement (Section BA)
The Watauga bridge, which carries N.C. 105 over the Watauga River north of the Broadstone Road intersection would be replaced. Construction would begin in 2019, ahead of widening N.C. 105, which is expected to begin in 2025.
N.C. 105 Widening (Section B)
Between Old Shull's Mill Road and Broadstone Road, improvements would include extending the existing passing lane further to the south, realigning a sharp turn at the southern intersection at Old Shull's Mill Road and N.C. 105 as well as closing the northern Old Shull's Mill Road and N.C. 105 intersection.
Between Broadstone Road and N.C. 105 Bypass, work would include widening the roadway to four lanes with a 23-foot wide raised grass median.
Six-foot paved shoulders would be added along the entire 4.5-mile corridor. The shoulder widths and retaining wall heights would vary along the corridor depending on how steep the mountain is in a particular area.
Project Distance Revised
In 2011, the N.C. Department of Transportation studied widening a 14.6-mile stretch of N.C. 105 from Linville in Avery County to Boone. The project was split into two segments – Section A from Linville to Foscoe and Section B from Foscoe to Boone.
In 2012, a new traffic forecast for 2040 did not project sufficient future traffic volumes to justify work between Linville and Foscoe. Existing traffic volumes dropped due to the recession, and traffic projections were lower because of waning development in the region. The dropped segment, Section A from Linville to Foscoe, might be studied in the future, if warranted, as traffic volumes grow.
As a result of the traffic forecast, the project area was shortened to a 5.5-stretch of N.C. 105 from Clark's Creek Road in Foscoe to N.C. 105 Bypass in Boone where traffic projections showed a need for improvements.
NCDOT then studied the 1-mile corridor from Clark's Creek Road to Old Shull's Mill Road and determined that no improvements were needed along that section.
NCDOT held a public meeting in Boone on Monday, Nov. 7, 2016, at which time NCDOT representatives received feedback from the community and answered questions about the project.
The maps and materials available at the meeting are available below for review:
The public can still give feedback and ask questions online or by calling Jamille Robbins, at (919) 707-6085, or by mailing them to:
NCDOT-Human Environmental Section
1598 Mail Service Center
Raleigh, NC 27699-1598
Comments must be received by the end of day on Dec. 9, 2016.
All written feedback – regardless of how it was submitted – will be reviewed by the NCDOT project team – including planners, engineers and right-of way-agents – as well as representatives from the Federal Highway Administrative, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and N.C. Department of Environmental Quality.
|Environmental Assessment approved
|Property acquisition begins for Watauga bridge replacement
|Watauga bridge replacement begins
|Property acquisition begins for N.C. 105 widening
|N.C. 105 widening begins
* Future dates are preliminary and subject to change
Project Development Engineer
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Michael Pettyjohn, P.E.
Division 11 Engineer
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Resources for Local Property Owners
In many cases, it is inevitable that a certain amount of private property must be acquired. The displacement of homes and businesses is minimized to the extent practicable. The following brochures will answer questions about this process.