DOT to hold hearing on widening 221 South in McDowell, Rutherford


MCDOWELL COUNTY, N.C.,None - The N.C. Department of Transportation will hold combined open houses and public hearings on Monday and Tuesday to answer questions and receive comments about the proposed widening of a 19-mile section of U.S. 221 in McDowell and Rutherford counties.

The goal of the project is to reduce travel time and increase safety along the U.S. 221 Intrastate Corridor, according to a news release from the DOT.

The hearing on Monday will be held at R-S Central High School in Rutherford County. But the hearing on Tuesday will be held in Marion at the Community Building. Like the one at R-S Central, the event at the Marion Community Building will begin with a pre-hearing open house from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. A formal presentation will start at 7 p.m.

DOT representatives will be available at the pre-hearing open houses to answer questions and receive comments and questions. Interested citizens may attend at any time during the above hours. The formal presentations will consist of an explanation of the proposed location, design, right-of-way and relocation requirements and procedures. Attendees will have the opportunity to comment or ask questions.

The state DOT is proposing to widen a 19-mile section of U.S. 221 to a multi-lane road divided by a median. The first 15-mile section of the project would begin at the proposed Rutherfordton Bypass north of Roper Loop Road in Rutherford County, passing through the Gilkey, Thermal City, Vein Mountain and Glenwood communities and ending at Goose Creek Road in Glenwood south of Marion in McDowell County. The second four-mile section of the project would begin at Goose Creek Road and end at the existing multi-lane section of U.S. 221/N.C. 226 in Marion. The project will require acquisition of additional right-of-way and the relocation of homes and businesses, according to the news release.

For more information, contact Jamille Robbins, state DOT Human Environment Unit, at (919) 707-6085 or Comments may be submitted until April 13.