May 11, 2012. Lane closures will not take place in the U.S. 321 widening project work zone through Blowing Rock this weekend due to the Appalachian State University graduation ceremonies in Boone. All lanes will remain open from 6 a.m. Friday until Monday, May 14 at 8 a.m.
Weekend travelers are advised to drive with caution as the work area now has temporary road markings that may be unfamiliar. The temporary traffic pattern near the Food Lion in Blowing Rock has eliminated the southbound left turn lane on U.S. 321.
The speed limit along U.S. 321 remains 35 miles per hour. The N.C. State Highway Patrol continues to monitor this corridor for speeding violations.
The road widening preparation work continues at a steady pace. Occasional lane closures will only continue on weekdays between the Shoppes on the Parkway and Green Park Inn. These short-term closures do not affect the entire road, allowing motorists to get through the work zone with brief delays. Potholes and broken pavement along U.S. 321 are being resurfaced to ensure a smoother ride through the work zone.
The road widening preparation also involves work in areas adjacent to the roadway. Clearing and grubbing work continues south of the Green Park Inn. This area, which has a rock face on one side of the road and a steep valley on the other, will be built up to match the current level of the highway, allowing the highway to be widened from two to four lanes. When blasting operations begin later in the project, any debris will be used to fill the lower levels.
The N.C. Department of Transportation reminds all motorists to drive slowly and with caution in work zones. When lane closures are in effect, remember to anticipate flaggers standing near the roadway. Drive slowly and anticipate the need to stop.
A project hotline assists residents or travelers in the Blowing Rock area with specific questions about the road widening project. Call (828) 964-3260 to speak to an NCDOT representative during regular weekday business hours (8 a.m. until 5 p.m.).
For more information or updates on the U.S. 321 road widening project, visit the project website (www.ncdot.gov/projects/BlowingRock321/). Follow project progress on the website or via Twitter (see @NCDOT_EastMTN and #US321).
For real-time travel information on this project at any time, call 511, visit www.ncdot.gov/travel or follow NCDOT on Twitter atwww.ncdot.gov/travel/twitter. Another option is NCDOT Mobile, a phone-friendly version of the NCDOT website. To access it, type “m.ncdot.gov” into the browser of your smartphone. Then, bookmark it to save for future reference. NCDOT Mobile is compatible with the iPhone, Android and some newer Blackberry phones.