Skip to main content

Could NC 172 be decomissioned?

U.S Marine Corps officials plan to close a state highway that runs through Camp Lejeune. The road, NC Highway 172, would only be open to vehicles with Department of Defense decals. The highway is a commonly used short cut for motorist traveling between the Wilmington and Morehead City/Beaufort areas. The highway totally avoids Jacksonville, and parts of the highway runs through the heart of the Military Base.

The restricted access is for security reasons, although no specific threat was named.

"It's in response to an ongoing evaluation we've had of our security," said Col. Brant Bailey, director of training and operations at Camp Lejeune.

Besides commuters looking to bypass Jacksonville, NC 172 is also shared by NC Bike 3, the Ports of Call Route.

Story via the Durham Herald-Sun.

NC 172, US 17, and NC 24 around Camp Lejeune and Jacksonville. (Source: 2007 NCDOT Highway Map)

Commentary:

If this plan does happen, --- and from the story it looks like local leaders and a 1946 agreement between the state and the Marines will allow it -- I do not see the use for the NC 172 designation on the highway. Through traffic won't be allowed to use it.

I think another reason for it is that most of the US 17/NC 24 Jacksonville Bypass is open to the North. The new freeway bypass moves through traffic away from the congested main drags of Jacksonville, Lejeune (NC 24) and Marine Blvds. (US 17)

The military claims that the closing will add only nine minutes to the drive, while regular drivers claim more. The map image above shows NC 172, Camp Lejeune, along with the newly opened Jacksonville Bypass.

There is no hard date set for the restrictions to NC 172; however, base officials plan to educate motorists using NC 172 changes of the plan over the upcoming weeks. There also hasn't been any word that NC 172 would be decommissioned to a secondary or local route as a result, if at all.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Small Towns of Virginia Series - Charlotte Court House

This sleepy little rural town in Central Virginia can easily be overlooked.  Located miles from the Interstate or four lane US and Virginia Highways, Charlotte Court House in many ways is easily forgotten.  However, this tiny town of slightly over 400 residents holds a lot of Virginia and American History.

In 1799, Charlotte Court House saw the passing of the torch from an aging Patrick Henry and a young John Randolph.  The great debate over states' rights was the last for the fiery Henry and the first in public for Randolph.  Randolph would go on to serve in the US House of Representatives and U.S. Minister to Russia.  Henry, who was serving in the Virginia General Assembly representing Charlotte County at the time of the debate, died three months later.

Charlotte Court House is not the original name of the town.  Originally named The Magazine, then Daltonsburgh, followed by Marysville (which was the town's name at the time of the Henry-Randolph debate), Smithfield, and finally…

History of the Wawona Road (Yosemite National Park)

Recently I located a portion of the Old Wawona Road that was the original alignment used by wagons and early cars to get to Yosemite Valley from the south before the Wawona Tunnel was built.  Locating the Old Wawona Road was the primary driving force to head to a very dry Yosemite National Park this winter.






Generally I don't talk about the history of a route first, but in the case of the Wawona Road I thought it was particularly important to do so first.  The modern Wawona Road is approximately 28 miles in length from the north terminus of California State Route 41 at the boundary of Yosemite National Park to South Side Drive near Bridalveil Falls in Yosemite Valley.  A good chunk of people entering Yosemite Valley use the Wawona Road which generally is considered to be the easiest route...that certainly was not always the case.

The origins of the Wawona Road are tied to the Wawona Hotel.  The first structure in the Wawona Hotel complex dates back to 1876 which was built by the Wa…

Old California State Route 41 on Road 425B

While researching the history of the Lanes Bridge crossing of the San Joaquin River I noticed an oddity on the 1935 California Division of Highways map of Madera County.  Today California State Route 41 takes a crossing of the Fresno River west of the confluence with China Creek.  Back on the 1935 Map of Madera County the crossing is very clearly east of the confluence crossing on what are now Road 425B and Road 426 in Oakhurst.   CA 41 can be seen traversing southbound from Oakhurst on Road 425B towards Coarsegold on the 1935 Madera County Map.

1935 Madera County Highway Map

After viewing Road 425B on the Google Street Vehicle it was clear that the path downhill from the top of Deadwood Gulch was substantially more haggard than the modern alignment of CA 41.  I finally had occasion to visit Oakhurst today so I pulled off of modern CA 41 at Road 425B.   Immediately I was greeted by this warning sign.






Road 425B ahead was clearly a narrow road but barely wide enough for two vehicles.  T…