South Carolina

I-277 drivers face more snarls as 2 lanes close for bridge work in uptown Charlotte

Photo taken in December of I-277 bridge work in uptown Charlotte in the vicinity of Brookshire Freeway and 10th St. The North Carolina Department of Transportation has reduced traffic to one lane on the Interstate 277 loop as crews work on bridges on the inner loop over Third, Stonewall and McDowell streets.
Photo taken in December of I-277 bridge work in uptown Charlotte in the vicinity of Brookshire Freeway and 10th St. The North Carolina Department of Transportation has reduced traffic to one lane on the Interstate 277 loop as crews work on bridges on the inner loop over Third, Stonewall and McDowell streets. dlaird@charlotteobserver.com

Interstate 277 drivers in uptown Charlotte face more traffic headaches as two lanes close for two weeks beginning Thursday night.

The lanes will close at 9 p.m. as work continues on bridge and pavement improvements on the John Belk Freeway, according to a news release by the N.C. Department of Transportation.

Because of the double lane closure, traffic will shift to the paved shoulder beginning near North Tryon Street and ending at East Trade Street, officials said. The new traffic pattern will remain until 6 a.m. July 3.

While all ramps will stay open during the work, traffic from North Davidson Street will not be able to get to Independence Boulevard (U.S. 74 East).

Drivers will instead detour to exit 2-A, and then turn left onto East Fourth Street, followed by an immediate right onto South McDowell Street. They can then turn right onto the ramp for U.S. 74 East.

In January, similar I-277 lane closures caused heavy congestion and clogged smaller streets as drivers sought alternate routes, The Charlotte Observer reported at the time.

“Drivers need to slow down and use extra caution while going through the traffic shift area, staying alert for other vehicles and construction crews,” state highway officials urged in the release.

Construction is underway way near near uptown between the I-85/I-77 and I-277-Brookshire Freeway/I-77 interchanges all part of the I-77 toll lanes project.

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Joe Marusak has been a reporter for The Charlotte Observer since 1989 covering the people, municipalities and major news events of the region, and was a news bureau editor for the paper. He currently reports on breaking news.
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