NCDOT held it's final open house style informational meeting for the highway 105 widening project on Monday. Like the previous meeting held in June 2015, this session gave motorists, residents and citizens the opportunity to get more information about the proposed project.
Originally slated to include all of 105 from Linville to Boone, the project was modified to begin at Clarks Creek Road to 105 bypass in Boone. After a project study it was determined that no improvements are needed for the one mile from Clarks Creek Road to Old Shull's Mill Road. The total project now runs from Old Shull's Mill Road to 105 bypass.
At Monday's meeting Mike Pettyjohn, division engineer of NCDOT's Division 11, told WataugaOnline.com that there have been no major changes to the plans first provided at the 2015 meeting. He said that just like with any project there will be some tweaks to take place.
Among the projects notable items would be replacing the bridge at the traffic light to Broadstone Road/Valle Crucis. Believed to have been built in the 1950s, the bridge is also thought to be the tallest bridge in the county. Another aspect of the project would be the closing to one of two entrances to Old Shull's Mill Road. The entrance on the northern side of 105, more commonly known to long time residents as the entrance near the old railroad cabooses, would be closed completely. Improvements to the southern entrance intersection would make it the primary entrance.
During the 2015 meeting Elmo Vance Jr., NCDOT Project Development Engineer, shared with WataugaRoads.com/WataugaOnline.com that the reason for the project being scaled back to not include Foscoe to Linville was due to traffic volumes had changed during studies. Vance says that DOT found the recession and the slowing of building in the area had lead to decreased traffic through those areas. He adds that though that section of Watauga and Avery had seen a decrease, it was also felt statewide too according to their studies.
Project Schedule: *A number of factors can affect a project schedule, so schedules are subject to change*
Property acquisition begins for Watauga bridge replacement Fall 2018
Watauga bridge replacement begins Fall 2019
Property acquisition begins for N.C. 105 widening Fall 2023
N.C. 105 widening begins Fall 2025
Photos: Kenneth Reece
Information Guide & Maps: NCDOT. Click on any map for a larger view, map will open in a new window.