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Western North Carolina The Mountain Region including Asheville
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Old 03-26-2010, 12:26 PM
 
Location: Dillon, Montana
586 posts, read 1,792,739 times
Reputation: 599

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Since no one seems to have mentioned it . . .

The hwy is closed Monday and Thursday nights from 7 PM until 5 AM and on Tuesday and Thursdays from 12 to 2 PM.

If you're "local" they will let you through to Waterfalls Rd., everyone else has to go through Wilkesboro, a HUGE detour. Only passenger cars and trucks are allowed to go through at all and if you don't know the area (and Waterfalls Rd.) it's best to plan not to travel during those times or just take the detour.

The additional blasting and clearing that this allows will cut the time to finish that section from 47 weeks to 12!! Hooray!! I'll let you know when they start paving . . . that's not going to be fun to drive!

Blessings!
Tracey
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Old 03-29-2010, 01:18 PM
 
Location: Hickory, NC
61 posts, read 327,777 times
Reputation: 150
Quote:
Originally Posted by hymnsinger View Post
Since no one seems to have mentioned it . . .

The hwy is closed Monday and Thursday nights from 7 PM until 5 AM and on Tuesday and Thursdays from 12 to 2 PM.

If you're "local" they will let you through to Waterfalls Rd., everyone else has to go through Wilkesboro, a HUGE detour. Only passenger cars and trucks are allowed to go through at all and if you don't know the area (and Waterfalls Rd.) it's best to plan not to travel during those times or just take the detour.

The additional blasting and clearing that this allows will cut the time to finish that section from 47 weeks to 12!! Hooray!! I'll let you know when they start paving . . . that's not going to be fun to drive!

Blessings!
Tracey
Maybe they should have done this when they first started, they are only what, a year and a half past the original date that they said they would be finished by?
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Old 03-29-2010, 08:21 PM
 
Location: Dillon, Montana
586 posts, read 1,792,739 times
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Exclamation Update to the Update! Closing WEDENSDAY

(Sorry, Wednesday) Already a change!

The town of Blowing Rock had a meeting to determine the impact of the Thursday night closing. It has now been decided to close on Wednesday nights instead of Thursday, and the time will be moved ahead to 8 PM as soon a there's enough light to begin working at that time, whenever that will be. As far as I'm concerned, I'll be down the mountain by 7!

Tracey

Last edited by hymnsinger; 03-29-2010 at 08:22 PM.. Reason: typo
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Old 05-31-2010, 04:33 PM
 
Location: Dillon, Montana
586 posts, read 1,792,739 times
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Thumbs up News, news!!

Repaving has begun!! The final layer of asphalt is now being laid with minimal delays. That said, this paving company (Maymead) is one of the worst at traffic control.

Traffic lane changes and transitions are challenging to say the least. Stay alert and SLOW DOWN. They are routing traffic around paving equipment and onto the shoulder for long stretches. The speed limit in the construction zone is 45 MPH, though where lanes are completed most do 55 and are not stopped.

There are several miles of FOUR lanes open to traffic!! Yay!! OTOH, the highway from Richland's Rd. to near the bottom at the Mountain Stop store is an ideal place for downhill drag racing. But, after seeing several years of road construction it's SO pretty!!!

A 40 minute ride has been reduced to 20 minutes! And the VIEWS!!! There is a small scenic overlook pull off at the top for pics of The Globe, distant Table Rock and the Grandfather Mtn complex. For Sky Warn volunteers, it's a great place to watch severe weather too.

The lower 1/2 mile of road is still being blasted on Mon and Wed nights, weather permitting, and is still very rough. A worker told me they will be blasting until at least September. We'll see.

God speed!
Hymnsinger
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Old 05-31-2010, 04:59 PM
 
Location: Hickory, NC
61 posts, read 327,777 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hymnsinger View Post

The lower 1/2 mile of road is still being blasted on Mon and Wed nights, weather permitting, and is still very rough. A worker told me they will be blasting until at least September. We'll see.

God speed!
Hymnsinger
So in other words it will be finished around May 2012?

I try my best not to be critical but as a resident of the area I can not help but be frustrated by how slow and behind schedule this project has been. I must admit that the parts that are now open are nice, looking forward to the project to be finished so that the traffic can bottle neck a few miles closer to Blowing Rock.
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Old 05-31-2010, 06:06 PM
 
Location: Dillon, Montana
586 posts, read 1,792,739 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeyBowman View Post
So in other words it will be finished around May 2012?

I try my best not to be critical but as a resident of the area I can not help but be frustrated by how slow and behind schedule this project has been. I must admit that the parts that are now open are nice, looking forward to the project to be finished so that the traffic can bottle neck a few miles closer to Blowing Rock.
And then, the Blackberry to Possum Hollow project will begin! Now THAT one will be the fun one!
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Old 05-31-2010, 10:59 PM
 
Location: Hickory, NC
61 posts, read 327,777 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hymnsinger View Post
And then, the Blackberry to Possum Hollow project will begin! Now THAT one will be the fun one!
I have not heard much about that, where exactly do they plan to put the road? Last I heard they were still trying to find a way to build a completely new route. I can not imagine it being 4 lanes through some of those curves by "The Canyons" or what ever that restaurant is named now.
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Old 06-01-2010, 10:15 PM
 
Location: Dillon, Montana
586 posts, read 1,792,739 times
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Check out NCDOT: US 321 Improvement Blowing Rock. Reading the PDF docs isn't much fun but it's kind of interesting, esp the environmental assessments. The dot site says that the est. completion date is 2014 . . . NOT! I look for it to be finished closer to 2020. We don't even know who the bidders are yet. God help us if English (doing the current widening) gets it . . . It'll be 2030 before it's done!!

I'm up and down this road at least 5 times per week! I hope I move before they start phase two!

Tracey
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Old 07-02-2010, 10:16 PM
 
Location: Dillon, Montana
586 posts, read 1,792,739 times
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IT IS DONE!! Except the bottom 1/2 mile that is. So, we go slow at the bottom, real fast for 6 miles on the beautiful new 4 lane highway, and then slow again for the two or so miles into Blowing Rock on the old two lane highway. Unless you have the good fortune to not be behind a truck or a visitor :-)

Interesting thing they have done on this one . . . they put "rattle bumps" (don't know what they are really called!) in the center between 2 double yellow lines. I've never seen this done here before but I like it! They also have the same "alert strip" on both outside lanes like most other highways. Now I wish they would put reflectors on all the stripes. This highway is going to be horrendous in the 0/0 visibility fog we have in the Fall and Spring. They also have not posted a truck speed limit on the downhill side. Allowing semi's to do 55 on that grade with fairly sharp curves just makes no sense to me!

The Highway is still closing on a regular basis . . . Wednesday night from 8 PM to 5 AM, but I'm not sure about the daytime closings. If I find out I'll post it.

Happy Independence Weekend!!! Y'all be safe out there, ya hear??

Pastor Tracey
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Old 07-02-2010, 11:21 PM
 
Location: Hickory, NC
61 posts, read 327,777 times
Reputation: 150
Kind of funny, I haven't checked this board in a week or so and today I did 321 for the first time in a few weeks. The completed parts are nice, though I do hope that the state highway patrol makes regular appearances. When I was in high school I would be fine flying down the mountain doing 70-80mph or faster (and did quite a few times back in the day). I think the new 4 lanes might encourage speeding a little bit more as I seemed like the slow car going 65 down the mountain today.

Hope they get that last section finished at the bottom before the world ends.
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