Road construction starts Monday

U.S. 276 South will see traffic delays as roadwork begins
By Caroline Klapper | Mar 21, 2013
Photo by: Vicki Hyatt The large cracks that have long plagued the section of U.S. 276 going over Waynesville Mountain will hopefully be a thing of the past once construction starts on Monday.

Roadwork on U.S. 276 South going over Waynesville Mountain is expected to start Monday, March 25 and continue until sometime in June.

Although the road will remain open, travelers should expect delays during construction, said Brian Burch, a construction engineer with the DOT.

“I would expect a couple of minutes (delay) each way,” he said, adding there will mostly likely be alternating lanes of traffic with temporary traffic signals utilized to control the flow of cars.

The $800,000 project, contracted out to WNC Paving, is an attempt to permanently fix that section of road, which has been a problem area for many years. The road’s foundation has been sliding and sinking, causing large cracks and potholes to appear.

Burch said over the past several years, repairs to the road have been becoming more and more frequent to the point that road crews were adding more asphalt to fill in cracks every few weeks.

“It became an urgent matter,” he said.

The plan is to relocate the road to the west, moving it away from the steep incline at the edge of the current roadway. A more gradual slope will be established to help with erosion, and the road itself will be shifted over by about the width of one lane onto the more stable ground to the west.

Traffic will still be able to travel over that portion of U.S. 276 for now, but the ongoing construction might require the use of Pigeon Gap Road as a temporary detour at some point.