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Project Highlights

The U.S. 321 project's proposed design would involve widening 13.9 miles of U.S. 321 to a six-lane divided road. For most of the length, it would have a 30-foot raised grass median.

A superstreet (sometimes referred to as a Synchronized Street) would be used along U.S. 321. All at-grade intersections and driveways would be right-in/right-out only. Drivers would turn right and use new U-turn areas to travel in the desired direction.


The project design and anticipated impacts are described in the following documents:

  • Environmental Assessment– February 2016
  • Finding of No Significant Impact – April 2018

This project is divided into sections, as described in the table below, in the current State Transportation Improvement Program.

​Section​Location​Details
​Section A
​U.S. 70 to U.S. 321A

​Right of way - Spring 2019
Construction - Summer 2021

​Section B
​U.S. 321A to Mission Road
Currently unfunded
​Section C
​Mission Road to Southwest Boulevard
​Currently unfunded
​Section CA
​U.S. 321/Mount Herman Road intersection
​Right of way - 2018
Construction - 2019
​Section CB
​U.S. 321/Pine Mountain Road intersection
​Right of way - 2018
Construction - 2019
​Section CC
​U.S. 321/Mission Road intersection
​Right of way - 2018
Construction - 2019

Recommended Design

The N.C. Department of Transportation reviewed all comments received at public hearings on July 11-12, 2016, a public meeting on July 27, 2017, and a public meeting on Oct. 16, 2017. Based on the feedback as well as preliminary cost estimates and anticipated benefits and impacts, NCDOT recommends a six-lane superstreet.

Multiple options were considered at several intersections and interchanges. NCDOT’s recommended designs at these locations were shown at the October 2017 public meeting and are described below.

A design revision in early 2018 made the following changes:

  • Minimized impacts along 1st and 2nd Avenue SW
  • Improved pedestrian connectivity at the U.S. 321/Second Avenue SW interchange
  • Revised the connection at Dudley Shoals Road to minimize impacts to a historic resource
  • Modified side street connections near Alex Lee Boulevard to minimize impacts to a stream

The recommended design is described below, and shown on the maps listed on the Project Documents page. 
 

​CrossingRecommended Design
​13th Street SW/2nd Avenue SW
​NCDOT recommends a half clover interchange at 2nd Avenue SW that:
  • Replaces the existing intersection at 13th Street SW and U.S. 321
  • Provides a direct connection from U.S. 321 to 1st and 2nd Avenues SW, which are primary routes through downtown Hickory
A section of 1st and 2nd Avenues SW would be converted from one-way to two-way streets, which is consistent with the city of Hickory’s long-term plan for the roadways.
​Clement Boulevard​NCDOT recommends a superstreet intersection at this existing signalized intersection.

Although NCDOT initially proposed an interchange, the most current traffic forecast no longer indicates a need for an interchange at this location. A superstreet intersection notably reduces property impacts to businesses.
​Grace Chapel RoadNCDOT recommends a flyover bridge from Grace Chapel Road onto southbound U.S. 321 toward Hickory with a Synchronized Street intersection serving the other movements.

With this design, drivers would be allowed to make a right turn from U.S. 321 northbound onto Grace Chapel Road and from Grace Chapel Road onto northbound U.S. 321.

Vehicles traveling south on U.S. 321 from Lenoir would use a U-turn bulb to turn onto Grace Chapel Road.

NCDOT proposes a new connector road from Lake Shore Drive to Grace Chapel Road as part of this design.
​Alex Lee Boulevard​NCDOT recommends a tight diamond interchange at Alex Lee Boulevard. As part of this design, a new road would connect Sage Meadow Circle, Midway Sand Road and the new interchange.
​Falls AvenueNCDOT recommends a tight diamond interchange at Falls Avenue.

8/15/2018 10:17 AM