Local News

Tourists Traveling on I-95 Can Tune in to Fayetteville

Posted October 12, 1999 7:00 a.m. EDT

— The city of Fayetteville is trying to make driving on Interstate 95 more interesting, while promoting tourism over the airwaves.

Travelers on I-95, including Amelia Charles, like to stop in Fayetteville for a bite to eat. Fayetteville businesses want them to stay longer.

The Convention and Visitors Bureau hopes a new radio network will help.

Fayetteville is hitting the airwaves on 1680 AM.

Motorists who tune in will hear a recorded message that does everything from welcome convention groups to tell listeners about ongoing events.

Radio networks are commonly used by airports and in traffic construction zones. What makes the Cumberland County station unique is its range. The signal here is strong for more than 30 miles.

South Carolina resident Wayne Washburn thinks the concept is good, but he does not think he would change his plans because of what he hears.

"When I'm going somewhere, I know where I'm going, and I'm on a schedule and trying to get there," Washburn says.

The director of the visitors bureau says the station is a gamble worth taking.

"You basically have over six million people a year going up and down the interstate, so even if you have one fraction of one percent of those folks that pull off the interstate as a result of this broadcast, you're getting folks in here that wouldn't be here normally," says Doug Traub.

Traub says even if people do not pull off immediately, they may plan a trip here in the future.

In the next few months, The Department of Transportation will be putting up signs on the interstate, letting motorists know about the station.

Durham also has a tourism network that has been in place since the city outlawed billboards.