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SMITHFIELD — If you’re traveling to Smithfield anytime soon, be prepared for frequent lane closures along Interstate 95.
Motorists on a 7-mile stretch of the interstate in Johnston County will encounter weekly lane closures for the next several months while contract crews do prep work to resurface the highway.
This week’s closure will begin just after midnight on Tuesday for the inside lane in each direction of the interstate between mile markers 104 and 106, north of Smithfield. The closures, which will be in effect 24 hours a day, will end Friday morning.
During the closure, crews for Fred Smith Co. of Raleigh will strengthen the inside shoulder next to the median, in preparation for eventually shifting a lane of traffic onto the shoulder for concrete repair work. The company received a $53.1 million contract in August from the N.C. Department of Transportation to repave the interstate between mile markers 100 and 107 in Johnston County.
The project, which also includes replacing two bridges over I-95, is more complex than most, according to a news release from the N.C. Department of Transportation. Crews will replace parts of the original concrete sections at 80 locations before they resurface the highway with asphalt.
The project will require closing one lane in each direction within that 7-mile stretch of I-95, usually between Sunday evening and noon Friday every week until next spring. There will not be closures during holiday weeks or inclement weather.
Demolition of the two bridges — at Lizzie Mill Road and Bizzell Grove Church Road — will get underway in early 2018.
Transportation officials remind motorists to drive safely, obey speed limits and work-zone postings.