US 421 Superstreet Conversion
Project # U-5312
Type: Superstreet Conversion
Affected Counties: Wilkes
Estimated Cost: $26,350,000
The North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) plans to convert 2.6 miles of US 421 to a superstreet from just west of NC 16 to US 421 Business in Wilkesboro. Changes to this portion of US 421 include replacing the asphalt center turn lane with a raised grass median and adding service roads.
US 421 in this area has long been known for accidents and traffic congestion. Officials have decided to try to address both issues by replacing the conventional intersection highway design with a superstreet design.
A superstreet redirects side-street traffic from going straight through or making left turns at a divided highway intersection. Instead, all side-street traffic must turn right, and then make a U-turn at designated accesses to travel in the desired direction.
According to the NCDOT’s website, a superstreet at US 421 will:
- Increase safety by reducing conflict points at major crossovers
- Allow travelers to save time from simplified signal phasing
- Enhance signal coordination
- Offer dedicated U-turn lanes for efficiency, thereby making it highly unlikely drivers will turn left when coming onto US 421 from side or access roads.
The raised grass median will also aid in preventing vehicles from driving straight across from one side of US 421 to the other.
Superstreet Left Turns
- Right-of-way acquisition – 2017
- Start Construction – 2019
- End Construction – 2023
It is estimated that more than 30 parcels of land will be impacted by this project. Currently, the NCDOT has set aside $7,100,000 for right-of-way takings. If your property will be affected, contact one of our attorneys (two of whom previously worked on behalf of the NCDOT) for a free case evaluation.