State to install rumblestrips along Hwy. 9

Published 10:14 am Tuesday, May 26, 2015

The state of North Carolina is proposing to install rumblestrips and brighter edgeline and centerline markings along Hwy. 9.

The Polk County Board of Commissioners approved a resolution in support of the improvements during its May meeting.

The proposal is for the improvements to go from the South Carolina state line to the Rutherford County line, encompassing more than 19 miles.

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Between Jan. 1, 2010 and Dec. 31, 2014, there were a total of 213 crashes on Hwy. 9, including 69 lane departure crashes, seven fatal crashes and one severe injury, according to N.C. Department of Transportation (DOT) statistics.

“In an effort to improve the safety of travelers on NC Hwy. 9, the North Carolina Department of Transportation proposes to install edgeline rumblestrips throughout the entire 19+ mile section of NC Hwy. 9 from the South Carolina Line to the Rutherford County Line, except for a 0.30 mile section starting 1.3 miles north of SR1140-Garrett Road, where centerline rumblestrips will be installed,” states the county’s resolution.

Commissioner Ray Gasperson said if the state does the project, the Polk County portion of Hwy. 9 will match the South Carolina portion, which already includes rumblestrips.

“Hwy. 9, let me tell you, can be dangerous,” Gasperson said.

Commissioner chair Tom Pack said the addition of rumblestrips will be something good for the county, especially with the equestrian center.

County manager Marche Pittman said the state has indicated the project will be something that will happen quickly because it will be funded through a pot of money used for safety, which this qualifies.

DOT officials said the project will include the addition of brighter edgeline and centerline markings throughout the entire 19 plus mile section of Hwy. 9.

The total estimated cost for the project is estimated at $245,000, according to the DOT.

Support of the project will not constitute an agreement to reallocate existing projects which have already been funded by the DOT, states the county’s resolution.