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Motorists using Raleigh Road Parkway, or U.S. 264 Alternate, west of the Interstate 95 interchange between Wilson and Sims will soon see changes that could affect mobility in the area.
The N.C. Department of Transportation will implement a highway safety improvement project at Hayes Road, widening the Lamm Road intersection to add dedicated turning lanes on both sides and adding a “bulb-out” near Lamm Road for trucks and large vehicles to make U-turns.
According to Andy Musselman, NCDOT Division 4 assistant resident engineer, the work began in June when crews began working on drainage ahead of the paving project.
“It’s going to involve modifying some of the access points along Raleigh Road,” Musselman said.
The N.C. Division of Highways has been evaluating the Hayes Place intersection for the past couple of years trying to screen it.
“It looks like it met criteria due to the number of frontal crashes in that area,” Musselman said. “At Hayes Place, they are going to be turning that into a directional crossover, which means that you will be able to make left turns from 264 Alternate, but you won’t be able to cross over, like from one side to the other on Hayes Place or to make lefts coming out of Hayes Place.
Motorists have noticed that orange safety barrels currently block traffic from going directly across 264 Alternate at Hayes Place.
“That will be sealed off so you won’t be able to go straight across anymore,” Musselman said.
There are several hotels and restaurants on either side of Hayes Place, including on the north side including Cracker Barrel, McDonald’s, Hampton Inn and Suites, Red Roof Inn and Suites Wilson, Microtel Inn and Suites by Wyndham Wilson. On the south side are several businesses including Burger King, Country Inn and Suites, Fairfield Inn and Suites by Marriott Wilson and Comfort Suites Wilson I-95.
Officials say modifying this access point could reduce the number of frontal collisions.
CHANGES AT LAMM ROAD
The current project calls for widening at the intersection at Lamm Road to install dedicated turn lanes on both sides to get onto U.S. 264 Alternate, going east or west.
Musselman said there is drainage work underway currently and other work at Lamm Road that is in coordination with the building of a new Chick-fil-A at the intersection’s northwest corner.
“Another thing they are doing with this is upgrading some drainage and cleaning out some of the ditches that have been filling up over the years,” Musselman said.
Several hundred feet west on U.S. 264 Alternate is another crossover area, and that will be turned into a dedicated U-turn lane for larger vehicles and trucks to make a U-turn from 264 Alternate West to 264 Alternate East.
The “bulb-out” is mostly for trucks.
It’s just going to be on one side of the road, so drivers would no longer be able to make a left turn or a U-turn coming from U.S. 264 East.
“It’s an extra bit of asphalt there to allow trucks with the larger turning radius to be able to make the U-turn without having to go off onto the shoulder,” Musselman said. “Since there is not a very wide median there, they have to add the extra asphalt on the outside.”
After the project is finished this fall, folks coming out of Hayes Place will have to make a U-turn at Lamm Road. Motorists on the other side will have to make a U-turn at the I-95 South ramp.