In December 2020, the N.C. Department of Transportation finished construction of a southern bypass of Asheboro to help reduce congestion and improve traffic flow and safety on U.S. 64 as well as enhance high-speed regional travel on the U.S. 64 Intrastate Corridor.
The U.S. 64 Asheboro Bypass includes a section — referred to as the Zoo Connector — that provides better access to the North Carolina Zoo, a major tourist attraction and economic engine for the region.
The project was needed because:
- Existing congestion along U.S. 64 causes significant travel delays and increases the potential for crashes. Crash rates along U.S. 64 in the area are above the statewide average for similar roadways in North Carolina.
- Existing and projected traffic and land use conditions along existing U.S. 64 through Asheboro diminish the route's ability to function as an intrastate corridor.
- Congestion and backups occur on N.C. 159 (Zoo Parkway) because local traffic mixes with zoo traffic. Visitors experience delays, and residents have difficulty getting to and from their property.
- It is integral to NCDOT's plan to upgrade the U.S. 64 and N.C. 49 corridors from Statesville to Raleigh (U.S. 64) and from Charlotte to Raleigh (N.C. 49 and U.S. 64).