Skip to main content

New I-73/74 Visitor Center Rest Areas Open*

*(At least the Northbound one)

From Sunday's (1/17/10) Asheboro Courier Tribune-
"After years of planning and a little over one year of construction, the Piedmont Visitor Centers on the Randolph/Montgomery County line are open for business — at least to northbound travelers.

Those headed south may have to wait about one more week.

DOT officials project that half a million travelers will stop at the two Visitors Centers each year.

On Friday [1/15], facilities on the northbound side of U.S. 220 Bypass began welcoming visitors. The doors were opened at roughly 3:30 p.m. after some last-minute work to remove traffic barrels and check on guard rails.

Jeff Loflin, DOT regional engineer, said final work on signage is stalling the opening of the facility on U.S. 220 Bypass South. He expects those concerns to be cleared up quickly.


Visitor Centers in the center of the state are a unique phenomenon for North Carolina. North Carolina has nine state-operated welcome centers operated by a division of the state Department of Commerce.

The centers on U.S. 220 Bypass were built by the state’s Department of Transportation but will be operated in a joint public/private partnership by Asheboro-based Safe-T- Works. Owner Kim Price negotiated a three-year contract with the state to run the facilities.

The state is providing the facilities and paying for utilities (apart from telephone and Internet service). Price’s job will be to maintain the facilities, both inside and out, and to cater to the traveling public."

Click the title which has the URL for the entire article.

Comment: Some locals are angry that NCDOT plans to shut down the existing rest area in Seagrove due to these new ones being open. NCDOT has agreed to leave the old one open at least through the spring.

I'll probably wait until decent weather (so probably not this weekend) to visit the centers (and to make sure the southbound one, which is up on a hill, is open).
I'll post photos to the blog.

Here's a photo approaching the northbound Visitor's Center from a couple months ago:

Meanwhile, those interested in seeing a few photos can see thumbnails (of photos you can buy here:
http://www.instantimagegallery.com/iig/a/372/160589;jsessionid=3C2E32F1089D69851C58044AC0285436?state:cat/Catalog=BrO0ABXcgAAAAAgEAByRCb3JkZXIAEG9yaWdpbmFsQ2xpZW50SWRzcgARamF2YS5sYW5nLkludGVnZXIS4qCk94GHOAIAAUkABXZhbHVleHIAEGphdmEubGFuZy5OdW1iZXKGrJUdC5TgiwIAAHhwAAABdHcMAAAJY2F0YWxvZ0lkc3EAfgAAAAABbA%3D%3D ).

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The story on how the unbuilt US 40 Expressway in Brownsville took 40 years to complete.

For nearly four decades, the four lane US 40 just east of Brownsville came to an abrupt end - shown in the photo above - at Grindstone Road in Redstone Township.   In the late 1960s, what was then the Pennsylvania Division of Highways (PennDOH) extended a new four lane alignment of US 40 eastwards from Broadway Street slightly over one mile to Grindstone Road where an incomplete diamond interchange was built.  Earlier in the decade, PennDOH had built a four lane US 40 in Washington County into Brownsville complete with a new crossing over the Monongahela River known as the Lane Bane Bridge.  This new highway and bridge allowed US 40 to bypass the older Intercounty Bridge and downtown Brownsville. 

After this new highway opened, nothing would happen to it for nearly forty years.  US 40 traffic would use the ramps for this planned diamond interchange and then jog on Grindstone Road briefly before continuing towards Uniontown on the original National Road. 
What is unknown (at least to…

The story of the Boy Scout Ramps on Interstate 79 North in NW Pennsylvania

If you are traveling on Interstate 79 North of Pittsburgh, you may notice the remnants of a set of off and on ramps at mile 100 just north of Exit 99 (US 422).  There's a story behind these ramps.  Forty years ago, these ramps were built specifically for two Boy Scout Jamboree's that were held at Moraine State Park - 1973 and 1977.  The ramps purpose were to provide access to the north shore of Lake Arthur where the bulk of the festivities and campsite for the Jamboree were located.  (Lawrence County Memories has a great write up and map of the festivities on its site.)

Not long after the Jamboree ended the ramps were abandoned.  There are still remnants of the Boy Scout Ramps today.



Above: Sattelite view of the Boy Scout Jamboree Ramps. 
Below: A view of the ramps from I-79 South.



The google street view image above gives a view along West Park Road of where the set of ramps intersected the highway.  The ramps provided direct access to North Shore Drive (which is the right tur…

The few clues of the Northern Durham Parkway

Sometimes when you look through a box of maps for the first time in five years, you come across something you may have easily over looked.  Such was the case when I found a 2004 (so rather recent) map of Raleigh.  This map was made by the Dolph Map Company for WakeMed.  In the Northwestern corner of Wake County, there were two items to the map showing roads that are still not in existence 13 years later.

The road is the Northern Durham Parkway - this is a proposed 19 mile highway from US 501 north of Durham to the Raleigh-Durham International Airport.  The first proposals for this highway date back to 1967 when Eno Drive-Gorman Road was listed on the Durham Area Thoroughfare Plan. (1)  Other proposals called the highway the Northwest and Northeast Durham Loop. (2)  The route would serve as a northern and eastern bypass of Durham almost serving as a near loop.  The route was fought vigorously for three decades by the Eno River Association citing concerns for the the Eno River, nearby n…