Local News

Holly Springs residents hope road improvements ease congestion

Posted October 4, 2016 7:08 p.m. EDT

— Along once-rural roads in Holly Springs, farms, woods and vacant land are giving way to subdivisions, and all the new homes and residents have brought traffic congestion.

"We really can't get out of our neighborhood some mornings," resident Kelley Poulk said.

"We try to take any kind of side roads we can take, but they're working on so much now that it's just kind of everywhere," resident Diane Kopec said.

There are at least 10 major road construction projects underway in the town limits to ease the traffic woes, including widening Avent Ferry Road to four lanes and redesigning the intersection at N.C. Highway 55 and Avent Ferry Road, where about 66,000 vehicles pass through each day.

The new design, which is expected to be completed this month, will limit left-hand turns and continue the so-called synchronized or "superstreet" design that runs along much of N.C. 55. Kendra Parrish, director of engineering for Holly Springs, calls the project a major improvement.

"It's sort of like a report card when you were in school. Right now, it's failing, and we'll bring it up to a B," Parrish said.

The town also is laying 20 miles of fiber-optic cable to synch up local traffic lights to help speed traffic along.

The population of Holly Springs has quadrupled over the past decade, from 8,000 to 33,000 residents, and the Town Council discussed yet another possible residential development at its Tuesday afternoon meeting.

Dave Budd said "there was nothing here" when he moved to Holly Springs 13 years ago. Now, he said, he never knows where or when traffic congestion will occur.

"They shut down lanes, so it gets pretty bad throughout the day," Budd said. "At different times, they're shutting down lanes. You don't know when it's going to be bad or not."

Town officials are doing the best they can to keep up, Parrish said.

"I don't know that anybody would have projected that early on, but we have really worked to try to accommodate the growth of the county," she said.