Final traffic patterns emerge as crews near end of I-40 rebuild

Posted June 2, 2017 2:35 p.m. EDT
Updated July 13, 2018 1:39 p.m. EDT

— With crews close to finishing the Fortify rebuild project along Interstate 40 in south Raleigh, state Department of Transportation officials are ready to put the final traffic pattern in place.

North Carolina Department of Transportation engineer David Conner says there is a light at the end of construction tunnel.

"This is the final push" he said. "We are finally getting traffic into its final pattern. We are finally getting all lanes open."

Beginning Monday night, median barrier walls will be removed, and newly-built outside lanes on the westbound side of I-40 will be opened to traffic, providing more space for drivers.

The shifts will be done over several nights, with work starting from the Gorman Street exit and moving east to the I-40/440 split in stages. The work is weather dependent, officials said, as new traffic lines can’t be put down in rainy or high humidity conditions.

Similar shifts in eastbound traffic to the rebuilt outside lanes are expected to begin in July. All I-40 traffic through the project area is expected to be in its final pattern by early to mid-August.

Crews will then resurface all 8.5 miles of the project in both directions, with permanent lane stripes and lane reflective markers. That work, which also depends on the weather, should last into the late fall.

Changes coming to Rock Quarry Road ramps

Crews will shut down the exit ramp from I-40 East to Rock Quarry Road (exit 300) and the entrance ramp from Rock Quarry to I-40 on Sunday night. The ramps will remain closed through at least the 5 a.m. hour of June 15, DOT officials said.

Drivers traveling east on I-40 will be directed to get on Interstate 440 West and then exit at Poole Road (exit 15). Drivers who were planning to go north on Rock Quarry Road toward downtown Raleigh can go west on Poole Road, which becomes Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, to get back to Rock Quarry Road.

Or they can get onto I-440 East and then I-40 West to take exit 300-B for northbound Rock Quarry Road.

Drivers planning to go south on Rock Quarry Road off I-40 can also get on I-440 West, then exit at Poole Road, cross over the interstate to get to I-440 East, and then take I-40 West and use exit 300-A for southbound Rock Quarry Road.

Southbound motorists on Rock Quarry Road who want to access eastbound I-40 should continue south and turn right on Jones Sausage Road, which returns them to I-40 East at exit 303.

Drivers heading north on Rock Quarry Road can turn right on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard to get to Poole Road and then take I-440 East to get to I-40 East at exit 16.

Fortify engineers also said they plan on Monday night to open ramps at the Gorman Street exit.