Raleigh drivers won’t face detours, but delays

February 28, 2013 by  

Buckling, cracking, and other problems with the road surface have made it necessary for the North Carolina Department of Transportation to rip up and reconstruct 11.5 miles of Interstate 40 and Interstate 440 near Raleigh. However, NCDOT has not designated any official detours, leaving it up to drivers to choose their own routes.

The work will begin sometime in the spring and may take up to three years to complete. The reconstruction stretches from U.S. Highway 64/264, located in Raleigh, to Highway 1 in Cary. The DOT has spent the last few months trying to prepare the drivers who use the route, some 110,000 of them daily, for the upcoming delays.

DOT’s Wake County division engineer, Battle Whitley, said the Department is not designating any official detours because they do not want to force all the drivers to a specific location, which will then become a bottleneck. Planners hope that drivers will find a number of different routes for their daily commute, thereby easing what is sure to be a difficult trip at the best of times. Whitley anticipates it will take three or four weeks for drivers to determine the best route for them.

The Department has yet to hire a contractor. Once construction begins, Whitley says it hopes 30,000 drivers at the minimum will use detours, public transportation, or even change their work hours, all of which will help minimize delays.

Although the Department has already tried to prepare drivers for the reconstruction, it could work with flyer printing concerns to create a mailer detailing the project and suggesting as many alternate routes as possible.