The N.C. Department of Transportation is preparing for race events at Charlotte Motor Speedway that will generate increased traffic in northeast Mecklenburg County and southwest Cabarrus County Oct. 9-12. The heaviest traffic is expected on I-85, U.S. 29, N.C. 49 and Bruton Smith Boulevard.
NCDOT in recent years has partnered with the North Carolina State Highway Patrol, the Concord Police Department and Charlotte Motor Speedway to improve traffic ingress and egress patterns, resulting in fewer delays and more efficient traffic flow.
NCDOT will utilize overhead message signs and portable message signs to alert motorists of problem areas and suggested alternate routes around incidents and congestion. The Department advises motorists to "know before you go" by checking real-time travel information online at www.ncdot.gov/traffictravel, by calling 511, or signing up for updates on Twitter.
While the addition of lanes on I-85 North and South at Bruton Smith Boulevard (Exit 49) should help alleviate congestion in that area, officials suggest motorists use alternate routes.
For motorists traveling from South Carolina:
Take I-77 North to the I-485 outer loop (Exit 1B) to U.S. 29 North (Exit 32) or N.C. 49 North (Exit 33).
For motorists traveling from west of Charlotte:
Take I-85 North to Mallard Creek Church Road (Exit 46), turn right and follow to U.S. 29 North. Another option is I-485 (Exit 48) to U.S. 29 North (Exit 32) or N.C. 49 (Exit 33). Through traffic should remain in the left two lanes of I-85 North to avoid delays near Exit 49.
For motorists traveling from east of Charlotte:
Take the I-485 outer loop to U.S. 29 North (Exit 32) or N.C. 49 North (Exit 33).
For motorists traveling from north of Charlotte:
Take I-85 South to U.S. 29/601 (Exit 58) or Poplar Tent Road (Exit 52) to Pitts School Road to U.S. 29 South.
Commuters that use I-85 can expect delays on the afternoons of Thursday and Friday, Oct. 9 and 10, and should adjust driving time if possible, or use an alternate route.
Motorists who do not need to travel near the speedway during race events are asked to avoid the area. After race events, all traffic will be directed away from the speedway. Motorists are encouraged to plan where to park before arriving, as they will not be allowed to travel toward the speedway.
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