Heavy traffic expected during race events next week


CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Heavy traffic is expected on Interstate 85 next week because of race events at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

NCDOT said the heaviest traffic is expected on I-85, U.S. 29, N.C. 49 and Bruton Smith Boulevard from Oct. 11-13. Officials said overhead and portable message signs will be used to alert drivers of problem areas, suggested alternate routes and congestion.

NCDOT recommended the following routes:

For drivers 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 drivers 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 drivers 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 drivers 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.

Drivers who don’t need to travel near the speedway during race events are asked to avoid the area.

In an effort to keep traffic moving, lane closures associated with the I-85 widening project will be suspended Oct. 10-13, officials said.