RALEIGH – It’s late summer in the mountains, and crews with the N.C. Department of Transportation are busy putting the finishing touches on road improvements to support the new Sierra Nevada brewery in the Town of Mills River. The work is perhaps the most visible example of how the state’s transportation infrastructure has played a key role in supporting one of Western North Carolina’s largest economic development projects, highlighted in this new video.
Since Sierra Nevada announced in 2012 that it would build its brewery in Mills River, the N.C. Department of Transportation has worked closely with the company to solve logistical challenges associated with constructing and supporting the company’s $107.5 million investment.
“DOT was brought into this project to tailor the infrastructure needs to the needs of this community and the needs of this development for Sierra Nevada,” said NCDOT engineer Steve Cannon.
These included prepping the brewery site in Mills River to accommodate the large volume of visitors and delivery trucks projected at the facility. The improvements include a new entrance road to the brewery complete with bike lanes, a roundabout that will welcome visitors and trucks, and a traffic signal that will make it easier to get in and out of the site.
North Carolina’s transportation network also facilitated another critical part of the project - getting the brewery equipment to the site in Mills River. The Port of Wilmington received multiple shipments of tanks and other brewery components, which were then transported to Henderson County.
“This kind of project showcases the broad capability of the North Carolina Ports System. Our ability to handle specialized items through the Port of Wilmington allows us to provide unique services that help expand business,” said Rudy Lupton, director of logistics at NCDOT.
Additional equipment was received at a South Carolina port and shipped up Interstate 26 into North Carolina. This equipment included large fermentation vessels measuring 80 feet long and 14 feet wide, which required special accommodation to transport. NCDOT led the effort to truck the vessels through North Carolina, shutting down roads and lifting light and power poles out of the way.
Watch the video to learn more about how North Carolina’s transportation network enabled Sierra Nevada’s major economic investment to successfully come together.
|Click this image to view at original resolution|