Raleigh – Crews working on the Fortify Project in southeast Raleigh will be busy next week with bridge, pavement,
piping and prep work, covering both I-440 and I-40.
A big step in the
building of a temporary construction vehicle-only bridge over I-440 East at the
median of I-40/440 took place Thursday night. The bridge girders were put in
place and some deck panels went in. More panel work will take place over the
next few days. Other work, including putting in the concrete for the decks,
will take the next few weeks to finish. It is hoped the bridge will be open for
traffic by mid-March. The bridge will provide a safer way for construction
vehicles to travel in and out of the project staging area in the median.
In the section of I-440
West closed off by concrete barriers on both sides, milling and sawcutting will
continue next week. They will be pulling up slab sections of the highway near
the bridge over Sunnybrook Road to check on the condition of the fill
underneath. In areas where there is a problem with the condition of the
substructure, it will be hauled away.
Crews on the west
side of I-440 are continuing to replace the storm drain system that is under
the highway so it is ready for when the actual road replacement work takes
place. In areas where the new storm drain work is completed, crews will break
the existing concrete pavement to get it ready for recycling.
The contractor is
also waiting for Mother Nature to cooperate to complete the traffic shift along
I-440. Temperatures must be in the mid 40’s or above and the roadway must be
dry for lane striping to be put in place. One night in favorable conditions is
needed to complete the shift for the final 1,500 feet of the westbound side,
carrying it to the U.S. 64/264 interchange. When that happens, crews will
immediately follow behind with three days of switching out the temporary orange
traffic control barrels with concrete barriers.
Once the west side
is set, the shift for the eastbound side of I-440 would start, going in the
opposite direction from U.S. 64/264 to the split. That work will take six days,
followed by eight days of installing concrete barriers for that side.
There will also be
some work going on next week on eastbound I-40. Because the contractor is
required to keep three lanes in each direction open during the I-40 phase of
the project, upgrades are needed to add travel lanes during construction,
including across bridges. Construction next week will involve prep work at the
bridge over Garner Road on I-40 East, with similar activity at the Hadely Drive
and State Street bridges in the following weeks. Once that is done, crews will
switch to the westbound side to do the same work. All the work will be done
without impacting traffic or during overnight lane closures.
through work zones along I-440 and I-40 are reminded to slow down to the
reduced speed limit in that area, and use extra caution for their safety, as
well as for their passengers, other motorists and construction crews. A
conviction for speeding in a work zone can cost a motorist an additional $250
above the original speeding fine and court costs.
The Fortify project is the removal and
replacement of an 11.5-mile
stretch of I-40 and I-440. The initial phase focuses on replacing the
section of I-440 between the I-40/440/U.S. 64 split and just north of the U.S.
64/264 Knightdale Bypass. Work will then switch to rebuilding I-40 between the
split and the I-40/U.S. 1/64 interchange near Cary. That is expected to start
in late 2014 or early 2015, with the entire project expected to wrap up by Fall
Because of the
traffic impact of the project, NCDOT has a Fortify website that provides
comprehensive information, including alternate transit options, project maps
and links to live traffic cameras. Employers can also access online resources
to help them develop and implement a flexible work program. The site includes
links to Twitter, Facebook
and other social media to stay engaged with NCDOT and other commuters.
*** NCDOT ***
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