Weather permitting, another major step forward is scheduled to take place beginning as early as Monday, March 28, 2016 for the U.S. 321 widening project in Blowing Rock. The current traffic pattern, which splits northbound and southbound traffic, is scheduled to be extended from West Cornish St to Tanger Outlets. This next phase in the traffic split will have drivers using the outside lane in both directions from Tanger Outlets to near U.S. 321 Business/South Main Street.
This next phase in the traffic split will allow the contractor to close off the median and inside lanes in both directions from Tanger Outlets all the way to US 321 Business/South Main Street. This will allow the contractor to safely continue construction on the median, including the designated crossovers, the remaining median curbs and gutters and the ductbank.
***Additionally, as part of this next phase of work, a temporary right in/right out only traffic pattern will be established at the intersection at Little Springs Rd. Southbound drivers wishing to turn left into Little Springs Rd will temporarily need to travel south towards Samaritan's Purse where uturns will be allowed, make a uturn and then travel back to Little Springs Rd. Drivers wishing to turn left when exiting Little Springs Rd will instead need to first turn right, travel north to US 221/US 321 Business/Main Street where uturns will be allowed, make a uturn and then continue on southward. This temporary right in/right out only traffic pattern is necessary in order for construction crews to complete the ductbank installation in the median through this area. This temporary right in/right out only traffic pattern is anticipated to last approximately two weeks.***
The following locations on the U.S. 321 widening project are designated crossovers: Tanger Outlets (signalized); U.S. 221/321 Business/Main Street near Chetola (signalized); Samaritan's Purse; Sunset Drive (signalized); Church Street; Ransom Street; U.S. 321 Business/South Main Street. Requiring drivers to initially turn right, then travel to a designated crossover before turning left improves safety by helping to reduce side impact collisions as well as improving traffic flow through the area. Once the temporary traffic pattern at Little Springs Rd is no longer needed, southbound left turns, left turns when exiting Little Springs Rd and uturns will all be allowed at this location as well.
Due to these new traffic patterns, motorists should initially plan to need extra time to get to their destination while everyone adjusts to the change in traffic flow. Drivers are also urged to use extreme caution while traveling through the work zone for their own safety, as well as their passengers, travelers in other vehicles, and for the construction crews working close to the roadway.
For details or assistance or for more project information, please call the project information line at 828-964-3260.