Local/State

Crawleigh work resumes; daytime lane closures on I40/440 set to begin

Monday, December 16, 2013

The Crawleigh construction project has resumed and it created some headaches during the morning commute on Monday.

» Click here for traffic maps, alternate routes, and live NC DOT cameras.«

This is the same work that the DOT postponed at the last minute last week.

Crews have shut down one of the lanes from the Interstate 40 westbound ramp onto the I-440 west beltline. That quickly caused backups Monday morning as traffic tried to squeeze down to one lane.

The traffic then travels through an I-440 west construction zone that forces drivers into the outside lane of the beltline via the shoulder.

While the work is underway on the westbound sides of the beltline, crews are busy prepping the eastbound side for the same process.

Work there won't begin until after the holidays.

Drivers can expect delay for the better part of the next three years. Crawleigh is the NC Department of Transportation's project to rebuild an 11.5 mile stretch of I-40 and I-440 because the road bed is crumbling and must be replaced. Construction on Phase One - from the I-40/I-440 split north to US Hwy 64 - runs from now to Fall 2014. Work on Phase Two - I-40 from US Hwy 1/64 to the split - starts in late 2014 and ends in late 2016.

Some 100,000 vehicles use the highway every day.

The I-Team is taking a hard look at one of the DOT's solutions to avoid delays.

One of the ways the DOT is trying to ease the congestion is with express commuter busses. One tags on to an existing line out of Zebulon; another is a new route to Johnston County.

They are trying to get 30,000 cars off the road every rush hour.

However, on Monday, those busses did not help.

The Johnston County bus had eight people on it, all morning long.

Commuters who chose to drive themselves Monday morning, stuck in traffic might have seen those busses flying by on the shoulder. Yet, people have to use them, if they are going to help.

"The more people get out and experience what the commute is like for them and then go out and look at some of these options, we would anticipate more and more people taking advantage of those kind of things," said DOT spokesman Mike Charbonneau.

The state is putting $12 million into these express busses and some vans, capping a year long effort to let drivers know this was coming.

However, with plenty of room left, DOT officials are hoping more people will hop on those busses and get their cars off the interstate.

We want to hear from you about any problems you see on the road. Send tips, photos and video to iwitness@abc11mail.com - or use the hashtag #crawleigh on Twitter.

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Tags:
north carolina news, raleigh news, wake county news, i40, i440, local/state
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