RALEIGH — The
N.C. Board of Transportation this morning unanimously voted to rename the Smoky
Park Bridge on I-240 over the French Broad River in Asheville for Capt. Jeff
Bowen, an Asheville firefighter who lost his life fighting a fire in July 2011.
The bridge will be known as the Capt.
Jeffrey Bowen Bridge.
“We have heard a strong outpouring of support for Capt.
Bowen from the local community and want to be responsive to their concerns,”
said Board of Transportation Chairman Judge Robert Collier.
The vote was taken based on the recommendation of the Board’s
Road Naming Committee, which unanimously voted yesterday to rename the bridge after
Additionally, the Road Naming Committee voted to examine
existing procedures regarding the naming of state-owned roads, bridges and
ferries. In the interim, the Board will not consider similar naming requests.