Local News

Highway 64 Bypass Steering Business Into Pittsboro

Posted December 19, 2001 2:18 a.m. EST

— Five months to the day after the Highway 64 bypass opened, traffic flow in Pittsboro is steady and profitable. The bypass keeps drivers moving on Interstate 64 by keeping them out of downtown.

The day the bypass opened, soft drink salesman Mark Poe was worried about business drying up.

"A lot of my business is sales. People don't come through here to stop to get gas, soft drinks or anything like that and I don't make any money," he said. "If I don't sell any soft drinks, I don't make any money."

"Well, so far everything has been fine. I think it's helped our traffic situation," said Gene Oldham, owner of S and T's Soda Shoppe. "People can back out of our parking spots better now because it's not as congested. We're getting as much traffic as we ever have."

The bypass keeps up to 8,000 cars a day out of town, but it is not hurting the antique trade.

"One of the best parts about the bypass are all the big trucks that we've gotten off the streets. Now, you don't have to worry about getting run over walking across the street, but the number of people coming through are up," antique owner Tom Grubbs said.

The Highway 64 bypass stretches eight miles around Pittsboro and cost taxpayers $11 million.