Skip to main content

Triangle Expressway Construction, October 2011

While in the Raleigh/Durham area in October, I had a few hours to check out progress on building the Western Wake Freeway (NC 540) portion of the Triangle Expressway (TriEx). Work had largely been completed along the Triangle Parkway (NC 147) portion, but I was about 6 weeks too early to be able to drive on it. I did get to drive over and around it though on my way to NC 540. Here's the approach to the Hopson Road interchange area:
They were still working closer to the intersection at Davis Drive on a Saturday:
Turning right on Davis I proceeded to the Davis Drive interchange, a C/D ramp and signalized intersections connect the two interchanges together:
Note the fancy brick face on the bridge approaches. Here's the approach on Davis from the other direction:
Since I could not use the Parkway, I had to approach NC 540 using I-40. Approaching the former Davis Drive exit on West 540 I got to see the future Triangle Expressway/Parkway interchange signs covered up:
The content of these signs can be seen on Adam's post regarding the opening of the Triangle Parkway. Note the fancier sign support posts. I was glad they kept the revised exit numbers I helped NCDOT 'discover' when they opened NC 540. This was confirmed on my trip by seeing this new, but uncovered, sign for the NC 55 exit:

You can see one of the toll gantries for eastbound NC 540 traffic on the left.

Proceeding now to the unopened section on what will be South and North NC 540. From McCrimmon Parkway one can see the NC 55 interchange in the distance from the bridge opened in the Spring of 2011:
Panther Creek HS is to the right, along with their football stadium whose high bleachers would probably allow someone to make traffic reports on the TriEx next fall. With the exception of signage and line markings this section appears near completion. As does the section south of McCrimmon towards Carpenter Fire Station Road:
Some shoulder maintenance work was going on while I took these photos. The next image shows the view back towards McCrimmon Parkway from the bridge in the distance above:
The view south from the Carpenter Fire Station bridge shows a similar stage of Tri-Ex completion down to Green Level School Road:
The next stop was the USA Baseball Complex in Cary, in particular the parking lot which borders the Tri-Ex southbound. Here's a view north toward the Green Level School Bridge:
The construction contractors have kept the shoulder and median grasses mowed, wish I could say the same for the baseball folks. Had to do a little jungle fighting to get the photo below which looks further south. Same stage of completion here as farther north:
The Green Level West bridge and future interchange are in the distance and the next stop. They were still working on the road in this location:
Looking south it appeared some more concrete work needed to be done on the northbound lanes. They also were working on the on and off ramps north of the bridge:
The bridge had only recently been opened and was wide enough to carry four lanes of through traffic and at least one lane for left-hand turns onto the TriEx ramps:
This is a closeup view of the future northbound NC 540 onramp:
The concrete stopped along the roadbed between this future interchange and the Jenks Road bridge just north of US 64. This bridge had just been opened the week before. Unfortunately, this is the best view of the roadway construction I could get. This road connects Jenks to the Mall near the corner of NC 55 and US 64:
The lanes here just have a preliminary asphalt covering heading south toward the US 64 bridge. This the view approaching the bridge on US 64 West:
Approach lanes to the off ramps have been created, but the ramps are still awaiting pavement. Here's the view from south of the US 64 bridge:
A closer look at the future NB NC 540 on ramp to US 64:
I had a wedding to prepare for, so I could not check out the rest of the TriEx corridor down to the NC 55 Bypass in Apex. The rest of the highway corridor has been cleared and work is proceeding on grading, if not paving, some of the sections of the future roadway. There have been occasional lane closings on US 1 and a detour on Old US 1 implying work on bridges to cross these roadways is proceeding. Grading has been completed at the NC 55 Bypass.

From what I saw, it appears that the NCTA will be able to open NC 540 as far as US 64 by next summer as planned, the rest is due to be opened by the end of 2012. I hope to get down again to the area hopefully as early as after the first section is open.

Meanwhile, maps, updates and photos of construction progress can be found, if not at Gribblenation, then at the NCTA Western Wake Freeway site.

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 was unknown (at least to…

California State Route 152

Circumstance had me out in the Monterey Peninsula again this week.  Generally I try to take a route like California State Route 198 or ever County Route J1 to get across the Diablo Range but time had me in a slight bind.  That being the case I took the popular way across the Diablos on California State Route 152 via Pacheco Pass.  152 is one of infamy given it is really the primary route for truckers to get from I-5 west in San Joaquin Valley to US 101 in Salinas Valley.  After zig-zagging some accidents on/off California State Route 99 near Madera in the rural outskirts of the County bearing the same name I began my westbound trek on 152.




CA 152 is called the William Whitehurst Highway, at least it is west from CA 99.  The entire route of CA 152 in San Joaquin is an expressway aside from a small portion in the city of Los Banos.



The first junction on CA 152 is with CA 233 which is a small 4 mile highway that travels northeast to CA 99.






Next westbound CA 152 encounters the junction w…

The National Road - Ohio - Muskingum and Licking Counties

As it travels from Zanesville towards Columbus, US 40 goes through numerous small towns, changes from two to four lanes and back numerous times, but most importantly the old road keeps its rural charm.  Between Zanesville and Gratiot, there are four former alignments of the old road that can be found: just west of Zanesville, Mt. Sterling, Hopewell and Gratiot.  Most stretches are very short and can be easily recognized with names as "Old US 40", "Old National Road" or some combination of the two.

Zanesville:
Just west of US 40's interchange with Interstate 70 (Exit 152) runs an old alignment.

Mt. Sterling:
Another old alignment goes through this small Muskingum County village.
Hopewell:
Today, US 40 passes south of the community of Hopewell.  The old two lane road is known as Hopewell National Road.
Gratiot:
Old US 40 is known as Main Street in this tiny village of 200 or so residents.  The old highway at times seems forgotten through here.
Just west of Gratiot, US 40 …