NCDOT to Move I-85 South Traffic onto New Lanes of I-85 North in Davidson County Starting Thursday Night Wednesday, September 26, 2012

  Traffic pattern shift needed to allow crews to realign and widen I-85 South

RALEIGH — On Thursday night, motorists traveling on I-85 South just north of the N.C. 150 interchange in Davidson County will encounter lane closures as crews shift traffic off the old lanes of the interstate and onto the newly constructed lanes of I-85 North. This represents a major milestone for the southern segment of the I-85 Corridor Improvement Project.

The lane closures will begin on Thursday at 8 p.m. By Friday at 6 a.m., the traffic pattern shift is set to be complete, weather permitting. At that time, the four new lanes of I-85 North will carry two lanes of northbound traffic and two lanes of southbound traffic from Exit 81 (Long Ferry Road) in Rowan County to Clark Road in Davidson County.

The move is necessary to allow crews to safely realign and widen I-85 South from two lanes to four lanes. Expanding the interstate will improve safety, reduce congestion and allow traffic to flow more efficiently along this heavily traveled corridor. More than 60,000 vehicles – many of them tractor trailers – drive along this section of I-85 daily. Widening the interstate will benefit the economy by making it easier for employees to get to work and companies to transport goods to market.

Traffic is set to remain in this pattern on I-85 North until crews finish building the new I-85 South lanes in April 2013.

This change is one of a series of changes needed to make progress on the interstate widening portion of the project.

  • In May, the N.C. Department of Transportation moved I-85 North traffic onto the new lanes of I-85 North when it opened the new I-85 North bridge over the Yadkin River.
  • In August, NCDOT shifted I-85 South traffic from Exit 81 (Long Ferry Road) to just south of the N.C. 150 interchange onto the new I-85 North lanes when it permanently closed the old Yadkin River bridge and moved southbound traffic onto the new I-85 North bridge.
  • This week’s traffic shift will officially move all southbound traffic off the old lanes and onto the new northbound lanes of I-85.

NCDOT broke ground in September 2010 on the southern segment of the I-85 Corridor Improvement Project, which involves replacing eight bridges, reconstructing the N.C. 150 interchange and widening 3.3 miles of I-85. The northern segment extends the reach of the interstate widening 3.8 miles from north of N.C. 150 to just north of I-85 Business. Work on both phases is concurrent and is scheduled to be complete by May 2013.

For more information on both phases of the $201.5 million project, visit www.i-85yadkinriver.com. To receive instant updates on traffic pattern changes, construction-related congestion and project milestones, follow NCDOT’s I-85 Twitter feed, https://twitter.com/NCDOT_I85.

 ***NCDOT***

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