Skip to main content

Old NC 10 in Orange and Alamance Counties and an old Hillsborough bridge

Took a brief trip after work today. I just wanted to check out a former alignment of NC 10 (Central Highway), and I found a few surprises on the way.

Sometimes you have a hunch that you may find an old sign at a specific place or down a specific road. Well, I had a hunch that there may be an I-85 North Carolina shield on the roads around Exit 164 in Hillsborough. So I stopped for gas, and I played the hunch right.


Then came one of the oddest signs I have ever seen. If you exit I-85 at Exit 161 (US 70/Truck NC 86), the road there is called the I-85 Connector. (Note: Years ago this is where the US 70 expressway - the predecessor to I-85 - returned to the two lane highway west of Hillsborough).

"Tolerance Ends". Now some of you will make wisecracks about North Carolina here...but all joking aside. What the heck does Tolerance Ends mean?

The I-85 Connector ends at Dewey Rd. and West Ten Road. Turn right onto West Ten and you are on the Old Central Highway. This section has a different feel than the part that runs from Hillsborough to Durham.

West Ten Road continues on until a fork in the road. According to Dave Filpus' Old NC 10 page, at this point the oldest route of NC 10 continues on Bowman Road. West Ten Road continues straight towards Mebane.

I took the left onto Bowman Road. Just before entering Alamance County, Bowman Road has a quiet crossroads with Ben Wilson Road.

At the Alamance County Line, Bowman Road becomes Old Hillsborough Road. I would follow Old Hillsborough Road until I-40/85 (Exit 152) where I turned around and headed back.

The widening of I-40 and 85 nearly a decade ago severed Old Ten as it would head back to Hillsborough. So I took the I-85 connector to Ben Johnson Road which connects to old Ten and winds into Hillsborough. Near the center of town, Old Ten crosses under the Norfolk Southern.

This is a bit different than the three railroad overpasses on the Eastern Orange County section. What's different about this one is that one of the piers supporting the bridge is in the middle of the street.

Off of NC 86 and just south of Downtown Hillsborough is a very simple but very elegant 85 year old bridge over the Eno River. I'm fairly certain this was part of Old NC 10.



If you look closely at the photo above, there are holes straight through the pavement where you can see the ground below. I wonder if this bridge originally had a truss span on top. Otherwise it is an early concrete slab bridge.

It was a great late afternoon trip and a good way to wind down after a busy week of work. I need to go back and take some more photos and do some research in and around Hillsborough and get some more photos of the Eno River Bridge.

Futher reading:
Old NC 10 - The Central Highway
Old NC 10 ---Dave Filpus
NC 10 ---Mike Roberson

Comments

Matthew Frye said…
Tolerance, in this case, refers to the extra 5 or 10% that a state trooper may allow a truck (an 18 wheeler)to be over maximum weight limitations. Tolerance is generally permitted on major highways, and in the picture with the "Tolerance Ends" sign, you can see that 86, 40, and 85 turn/exit. The sign indicates that tolerance ends at this point in the road because the highway doesn't continue straight on.
Adam said…
That makes total sense...Thanks!

Popular posts from this blog

California State Route 49; The Golden Chain Highway (CA 41 north to CA 16)

Last year I traveled California State Route 49 from CA 16 north to CA 89 in one continuous trip.  The prior two years I traveled the rest of CA 49 south to CA 41 in Oakhurst.  This blog post consists of photos of the highway from that time period and historical information about the southern part of CA 49.






This blog post is meant to be a continuation of the previous one I did regarding CA 49 from CA 16 north to CA 89.  A link to said blog post can be found below:

California State Route 49; The Golden Chain Highway (CA 16 north to CA 89)

As stated in the previous blog post; CA 49 is an approximately 295 mile long north/south highway which traverses the traditional Gold Rush Country of California.  While I intend to discuss county level historical alignments of CA 49 as I did in the first blog post I thought this would be a good place to discuss the backstory of highway. 

CA 49 was first signed in 1934 along a series of Legislative Route Numbers ("LRN") that were largely locate…

Throwback Thursday - April 26, 2018

This week's Throwback Thursday takes us to a throwback that never was. Interstate 291 was planned to be a loop around the west and north sides of Hartford, Connecticut, but for a number of reasons, such as community opposition and environmental issues put the kibosh on the proposal. However, there are a few places to check out parts of I-291 that were built, such as the existing stretch of I-291 in Windsor and Manchester. What was to be the interchange between I-84 and I-291 was built in Farmington, along with the ramps, but most of the ramps and through carriageways were never opened to the public. I visited in April 2008 and took some photos. In the distance, you can see the stack interchange with I-84 that was built but never put into operation.




Sources and Links:
Kurumi.com - I-291

Alaskan Way Viaduct Legacy Part 2; Alaskan Way, US Route 99 and the Alaskan Way Viaduct

Upon my arrival in downtown Seattle after taking the Bremerton-Seattle Ferry across Puget Sound I stopped to see the soon to be razed Alaskan Way Viaduct.  The Alaskan Way Viaduct is an elevated freeway and a former segment of US Route 99.  Interestingly US 99 is still signed at the southbound Viaduct Ramp located at Columbia Street and 1st Avenue in Pioneer Square.






This blog entry is the second in a series of two related to transportation in Seattle related to the Alaskan Way Viaduct.  The first entry in the series can be found here:

Alaskan Way Viaduct Legacy Part 1; Alki Point, Duwamish Head and Railroad Avenue

Continuing from the previous blog entry I mentioned Railroad Avenue as a major planked wood road corridor spanning Elliott Bay and the Waterfront of downtown Seattle.  By the early 20th century it was fairly obvious the wooden plank road was woefully inadequate for Automobile traffic. When US Route 99 was plotted out in 1926 it appears to have likely used the following route …