DOT has no immediate plans for disputed median
“With the increase in traffic, I have not received significant concerns regarding this issue,” NCDOT district engineer Gretchen Byrum said in an e-mail.
“Further, I don’t want to close any lanes of traffic this time of year on U.S. 158 that will impact traffic or safety of employees.”
She said that even after the tourist season, the NCDOT does not have any definite plans to reconfigure the median.
“If we see a significant problem, we will make plans to revise it,” she concluded.
The median was installed to prevent drivers from making a left-hand turn out of the northern end of the Lowe’s parking lot.
Initial objections to the newly installed median came during an April public forum held at Town Hall. NCDOT officials responded by saying they planned on studying the issue and expected to reconfigure the median in some way.
Concerns centered on the lack of time the median allows for deceleration when making a left turn from the northbound lane onto First Street as well as the lack of stacking room in the turn lane.
A traffic barrier at the northern exit to the parking lot is also aimed at deterring left hand turns.
Lowe’s opened its doors on May 17. The home improvement store is 103,000 square feet with an adjacent garden center.
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