Last day to comment on Highway 9 widening

Published 12:53 pm Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Public can submit comments until Tuesday, May 7 to NCDOT

MILL SPRING—Polk County residents have until Tuesday, May 7 to submit comments to the North Carolina Department of Transportation regarding a project to widen Highway 9 between Highway 108 and U.S. 74 and place turn lanes at Polk Central Elementary School.

The NCDOT held an informational meeting about the project for the public in late April.

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The project is to widen approximately three miles of Highway 9 with costs estimated at $3.3 million, including lane and shoulder improvements.

The project is referred to as R-5840 and is on the State Transportation Improvement Project list.

Construction is scheduled for fiscal years 2022 and 2023 and includes turn lanes, both right and left at the elementary school, but not the replacement of the bridge. NCDOT officials said a separate project will replace the bridge.

The proposed project includes increasing the existing lane width and adding wider shoulders to the existing two-lane roadway. The widening will include increasing the current 10-foot lanes to 12 feet and adding six foot wide paved shoulders.

NCDOT officials said the project will impact 50 properties, with some saying the project is not necessary.

The 2017 estimated annual average daily traffic for the approximate three-mile section of road was 3,000 vehicles, according to NCDOT figures. There are 10 school buses that travel the road daily, with 38 school bus trips daily and a variety of agricultural and commercial land uses, according to NCDOT figures.

The NCDOT also said between 2012 and 2017, there were a total of 36 vehicle accidents along the stretch, including 20 with property damage only, 15 with injury and one fatal crash.

Residents have until May 7 to send in comments about the project.

Comments can be sent to Project Manager Larissa Via at 919-803-8215, or 4700 Homewood Court, Suite 310, Raleigh, NC 27609 to submit comments or for additional information.