10-day NASCAR event revs up Charlotte economy

by: DaShawn Brown Updated:

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. - NASCAR’s Monster Energy All-Star race is a part the “10 Days of NASCAR Thunder,” which continues in the Charlotte area through next weekend

Speedway officials expect the event will have a massive impact on the local economy.

More than $200 million is projected over the 10-day event, coupled with as many as 5,000 jobs.

Thousands of people were also on the grounds at Charlotte Motor Speedway Saturday, some of whom have been camped out for weeks.

“It’s really just one big party, and we’re glad to play host,” said Scott Cooper, Charlotte Motor Speedway’s Vice President of Communications.

Cooper said fans in attendance represent all 50 states and more than 20 countries.

Velisha Patel traveled 22 hours from India to attend Saturday’s All-Star Race.

“We had fun,” she said.

“It shows with the people that are traveling from so far away that NASCAR is still very strong and the future is going to be bright,” Cooper said.

The “10 Days of NASCAR Thunder” continues through next weekend when it culminates with the Coca-Cola 600.

(WATCH: DaShawn Brown reports from Charlotte Motor Speedway)

“Very loud and they had the Camaro, the 2017 Camaro and it was very sporty,” NASCAR fan Kameron Dragun said.

Suggested routes for motorists headed to NASCAR race events

Thousands of race fans will be on the roads in northeast Mecklenburg County and southwest Cabarrus County in the next couple of days.

NASCAR events kicked off Thursday at Charlotte Motor Speedway, capped by the Coca-Cola 600 on May 28.

The North Carolina Department of Transportation is preparing for increased traffic on I-85, U.S. 29, NC 49 and Bruton Smith Boulevard.

NCDOT will use overhead and portable message signs to alert motorists of potential problem areas and suggested alternate routes around incidents and congestion.

The department advises motorists to check for real-time traffic information by visiting www.DriveNC.gov, calling 511 or following NCDOT on Twitter.

Bruton Smith Boulevard is expected to see the most traffic because most GPS routes use the route.

NCDOT encourages motorists to use U.S. 29 to get to the speedway whenever possible.

The following are suggested routes for motorists heading to Charlotte Motor Speedway:

  • 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 I-485 (Exit 30) and follow I-485 Inner to U.S. 29 North. An alternate route is I-85 North to Poplar Tent Road (Exit 52) to Pitts School Road to U.S. 29 South;
  • 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); and
  • For motorists traveling from north of Charlotte: Take George W. Liles Parkway (Exit 54) to U.S. 29 South.

Commuters who use I-85 through the area should adjust driving times or, if possible, use an alternate route, especially if they travel during the weekend.

After race events, all traffic will be directed away from the speedway.