(Project Update: The traffic pattern change will now occur tonight
between 10 p.m. and 11 p.m. The contractor needed to complete some additional
work last night and today, which required NCDOT to adjust the schedule for
opening the new U.S. 52 North bridge to traffic by one day. The department is
still on track to reopen all lanes of U.S. 52 North on March 25.)RALEIGH — Motorists will begin traveling for the
first time on the newly constructed U.S. 52 North bridge over Liberty Street in
Winston-Salem on Monday, March 19. The N.C.
Department of Transportation will open the outside lanes of the new bridge
to traffic, as well as the outside lane of U.S. 52 North, at 10 p.m.
At that time, NCDOT will also close the inside lane of
the highway to traffic. This step will allow crews to connect the inside lane
of U.S. 52 North to the inside lanes of the new bridge.
NCDOT expects the closure to create significant traffic
congestion on U.S. 52 North, especially during the morning and evening rush
hours. Motorists are strongly encouraged to take an alternate route to reach
their destinations. To better understand how traffic will flow through the area
while the closure is in place, watch this video, http://youtu.be/UitKEVB5kZk.
The closure will remain in effect until Sunday, March 25.
Once the paving work is complete and the highway is fully connected to the new
bridge, NCDOT will open all lanes of U.S. 52 North, and traffic will travel
over Liberty Street on all four lanes of the new bridge. The department will
also reopen the entrance ramp from Liberty Street to U.S. 52 North (south of
Exit 111A), and the entrance and exit ramps on U.S. 52 North at 25th Street
(Exit 111A) at this time.
Overall, the closures will only be in place for two
weeks. Originally, the plans called for a two-month closure. Through innovative
work with the contractor, NCDOT has dramatically reduced the time the closures
will be in place, thus lessening the impact on drivers.
The department urges motorists to “know before you go”
about traffic conditions on U.S. 52. For real-time travel information at any
time, call 511, visit www.ncdot.gov/travel
or follow NCDOT on Twitter at http://twitter.com/ncdot_triad.
Another option is NCDOT Mobile, a phone-friendly version
of the NCDOT website. To access it, type “m.ncdot.gov” into the browser of your
smartphone and bookmark it for future reference. NCDOT Mobile is compatible
with the iPhone, Android and some newer Blackberry phones.
For more information about the U.S. 52 Bridge Replacement
Project, visit www.ncdot.gov/projects/us52BridgeReplacement/.
(Editor’s note: Aerial photos of the project area, as
well as details about how the new bridge will benefit motorists, are available
on the aforementioned project website.)