Thousands of race fans will be on the roads as NASCAR events kick off Friday at Charlotte Motor Speedway, capped by the Bank of America 500 on Sunday.
The N.C. Department of Transportation and local agencies are preparing for increased traffic on I-85, U.S. 29, N.C. 49 and Bruton Smith Boulevard.
NCDOT will utilize overhead message signs 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 going to www.DriveNC.gov, calling 511 or following NCDOT on Twitter.
Bruton Smith Boulevard often sees the most traffic volume, since mobile direction services and GPS devices typically direct users to this route.
Because of this, NCDOT encourages motorists to use U.S. 29 to access 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 Virginia: Take I-77 South to the I-485 Inner Loop (Exit 19A) 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 this area should adjust driving time or, if possible, use an alternate route, especially if traveling during the weekend.
Visitors to Concord Mills Mall are encouraged to take I-485 to Mallard Creek Road (Exit 28), then head north to the mall, taking a right at the first or second traffic signal.
This alternate route will ease congestion at the mall entrance from I-85.
Nighttime lane closures associated with the I-85 widening project in Cabarrus and Rowan counties will be suspended for weekend activities.
After race events, all traffic will be directed away from the speedway, so race attendees should plan accordingly.
South Church Street between West 3rd Street and West Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard will close on Friday at 7 p.m. and will re-open on Saturday at 6 a.m. West 4th Street, South Graham Street, and West Stonewall Street will be utilized as the detour.
This closure is necessary for a utility road crew to install three inner duct pipes under the road for emergency repairs.
This road will be closed to all through traffic. CATS will be affected.
East Stonewall Street (eastbound) between South Caldwell Street and South Davidson Street will close on Friday at 7 p.m. and will re-open on Sunday at 6 p.m. South Caldwell Street, East Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and South Davidson Street will be utilized as the detour.
This closure is necessary for the erection of a tower crane for the Northwood Ravin site. This road will be closed to all through traffic. CATS will not be affected.
Race for the Cure begins on Saturday at 6 a.m. at 401 South Tryon Street. Event organizers expect 10,000 attendees. The route uses South Church Street, West Summit Avenue, South Tryon Street, East Morehead Street, South McDowell Street and East 3rd Street.
Hola Charlotte begins on Saturday at noon and will last until 7 p.m. in uptown Charlotte on North Tryon Street between Trade Street and 8th Street. Event organizers expect 35,000 attendees.
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