WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (WFMY) – Thousands of drivers will be impacted by the highway Business 40 closing in downtown Winston-Salem.

BUSINESS 40 CLOSED

The North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) officially closed the Business 40 stretch on Saturday, November 17.

WHAT STRETCH IS INVOLVED IN THE PROJECT?

Crews will conduct a number of construction projects on the 1.2 mile stretch along Business 40 between Peters Creek Parkway and the U.S. 52 area.

VERIFY: Business 40 Commonly-Asked Questions

HOW LONG WILL BUSINESS 40 BE CLOSED?

The NCDOT originally projected the closing would last for about two years. However, construction is months ahead of schedule. 

RELATED: Business 40 Months Ahead of Schedule, Could Open In Early 2020

The NC Department of Transportation reports accelerated opening date for Business 40 is April 9, 2020. There are incentives in place that could result in the road opening by the end of 2019 or early 2020. However, the NCDOT reports its still too early in the process to be able to make that determination now. The NCDOT and the project contractor are committed to opening the road back up at the earliest possible date. The Business 40 project started in November 2018, after years of planning and careful attention to detours

Related: Business 40 Closing in November; But DOT Is Shaving Months Off The Project

HOW MANY IMPACTED BY CLOSING?

More than 80,000 vehicles travel on Business 40 daily. Half of them are local, while the other half are passing through. That includes 15,000 commuters alone from Greensboro who travel to Winston-Salem daily.

RELATED: From Peters Creek Parkway to US 52 | The 2 Year Business 40 Closure Is Here

HOW CAN I GET TRAFFIC INFORMATION? 

You can get the latest traffic information by downloading the WFMY News 2 App and click on the Traffic Section.

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You can also download the Waze App recommended by the NCDOT which offers route options.

DETOURS

All Business 40 traffic will be diverted to I-40, Peters Creek Parkway and U.S. 52, make sure you look for posted detours.

Related: Learn Alternative Routes Ahead of Business 40 Closure in Winston-Salem

ALTERNATIVE ROUTES DRIVING FROM GREENSBORO 

There will be three alternate routes for people driving from Greensboro to downtown Winston-Salem.

• Take the 5th Street exit all the way downtown

• Take Martin Luther King Jr. Drive exit, then a left onto Marshall Street

• Take exit U.S. 52 to Research Parkway. Stay on Research Parkway until you get to a roundabout, then take Main Street into downtown.

RELATED: Alternative Routes To Business 40 Closing You Should Know About

EXPECTED REOPENING OF BUSINESS 40

With construction slated to last for two years, the NCDOT said efforts are underway to reopen the road in early 2020.

WILL BUSINESS 40 BE RENAMED AFTER IT OPENS?

Yes, Business 40 will be renamed after it opens and will be called Salem Parkway/U.S. 421.

WHAT WILL REMAIN OPEN?

The sections between downtown Winston-Salem and the I-40 splits, near Clemmons and the Piedmont Triad Farmers Market will remain open.

Related: Businesses Prepare for Business 40 Closure in Winston-Salem

The Cherry and Marshall Street bridges will also remain open until construction is complete on the Liberty and Main Street bridges.

PROJECTS, CLOSINGS, & REOPENING PROJECTIONS 

BRIDGES OPEN

  • Marshall and Cherry street bridges – These are open to vehicular and pedestrian traffic. They will remain open until Summer 2019. They will close when the Main, Liberty and Church street bridges are all open.
  • Peters Creek Parkway bridge – This interchange at Peters Creek Parkway and Business 40 was overhauled to add lanes and a new bridge. The bridge was completely open when Business 40 closed on Nov. 17, 2018.
  • Fourth Street bridge – This bridge was demolished in Spring 2018 and rebuilt. It reopened in early January 2019. The replacement of the Fourth Street bridge, along with the Peters Creek Parkway bridge, was the first stage of the Business 40 project construction.
  • Green Street bridge –The current Green Street bridge will remain open to pedestrians, until the new Broad Street bridge opens. Then the Green Street bridge is slated to be demolished and rebuilt as a dual tied-arch suspension bridge for pedestrians. The bridge will contain lighting systems for pedestrian safety and for bridge illumination.  

BRIDGES UNDER CONSTRUCTION

  • Broad Street bridge – Construction of the new bridge is ongoing and the bridge is scheduled to reopen this spring. The new Broad Street bridge will have three vehicular lanes of travel, a bike lane in each direction, and a sidewalk on both sides of the bridge.
    • Main, Liberty and Church streets bridges – These bridges have been demolished. Cres have started the substructure work at each bridge location. They are driving pile and pouring concrete and construction retaining walls. These bridges are scheduled to reopen this summer. With the reopening of the Main Street bridge, the portion of Business 40 between Main Street and U.S. 52 will also reopen. Westbound Business 40 motorists will be able to access downtown Winston-Salem via the Main Street exit ramp. Motorists will also be able to access eastbound Business 40 from the Main Street entrance ramp.
    • Business 40 bridge over Brookstown Avenue – This bridge was taken down in December 2018. It will not reopen until Business 40 reopens early next year. New drainage pipe and sewer pipe are currently being installed on Brookstown Avenue.
    • Strollway Pedestrian bridge – The new strollway bridge over Business 40 will replace the section of strollway that previously passed underneath Business 40 near Liberty Street. Substructure work for the new bridge is ongoing and is on schedule to be completed in this summer. Once finished, the new bridge will contain plantings, ranging from small bushes and flowers to colorful garden trees, and lighting for pedestrian safety. The new bridge will reconnect the strollway access from downtown Winston Salem to Old Salem and the Salem Creek Greenway.

BRIDGES DEMOLISHED

  • The Spruce Street bridge was demolished in December 2018, six months ahead of schedule. The contractor was able to utilize a crew that was already onsite and perform the work early. The Spruce Street bridge will not be rebuilt.

HOW MUCH WILL IT COST

The project will cost $99.2 million dollars and includes construction of Business 40 and 11 new bridges and includes the following:

• Replacing the existing roadway pavement

• Modernizing entrance and exit ramps

• Replacing nine vehicular bridges and two pedestrian bridges

• Lengthening the acceleration and deceleration lanes between ramps

• Widening existing roadway shoulders and adding new shoulders

• Building portions of a multi-use path from Lockland Avenue to Liberty Street

Check out the Business 40 Project Site 

WHAT TO EXPECT WHEN BUSINESS 40 REOPENS?

When Business 40 reopens, it will provide a better driving experience with wider lanes, longer access and exit ramps, higher bridges, and increased speed limit, a modern look and a new name - Salem Parkway/U.S. 421

PETERS CREEK PARKWAY BRIDGE REOPENS 

The completed Peters Creek Parkway Bridge has reopened.

NCDOT says drivers will be able to use four of the six lanes and use the final extension of the road to West First Street.

Because Business 40 is a lifeline for commuters from all areas of the county and is a connector for students coming from different high schools to the WS/FCS Career Center, we want staff, parents, and students prepared to navigate while the road is closed. Some important notes for you to remember:

WINSTON-SALEM FORSYTH COUNTY SCHOOLS NOTICE

  • Plan detours and alternative routes now with your family and your business
  • Add an extra 25 minutes to your trip both ways
  • Look at alternatives such as carpooling, park and rides, WSTA and PART
  • WS/FCS has already implemented alternative bus routes, but the timeliness of buses will still be impacted by detoured traffic
  • WS/FCS will be involved with the City/County Multi-Agency Coordination Center (MACC) for the first three (3) days of the closure
  • WS/FCS will continue to cooperate with all partners throughout this project
  • BE PATIENT

PAYING UTILITY BILLS AFTER BUSINESS 40 CLOSING

From the City of Winston-Salem

With the Business 40 closing complicating access to the Bryce A. Stuart Municipal Building, Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Utilities is encouraging customers who travel downtown to pay their water and sewer bill in-person to consider alternative payment methods.

Related: City Of Winston-Salem Urging Residence To Pay Utilities Online Amid Business 40 Closure

Payments can be made online, via telephone or at another location two miles north of downtown. Visit cityofws.org/Departments/Finance/Revenue/Pay-Bills for several options to avoid construction traffic, save time and pay online.

On cityofws.org/, the city home page, select “Water/Stormwater” under the Online Bill Pay heading and click Go. You will need your account number and PIN (last four digits of customer number) to login.

Then you can sign-up for paperless billing (e-notify), view your bill, make a payment by credit card or bank account, plus many other options.

Other payment options include online bill payment through your personal bank, or you can complete an authorization for automatic draft on the website and send it in with your current bill, payment, and a voided check. The auto-draft will begin with your next statement.

Telephone payment is also available with live agents through CityLink (311 or 336-727-8000) or the City’s automated telephone system at 336-727-2355.

In-person payments can also be made at the Black-Phillips-Smith Government Center, located at 2301 North Patterson Avenue, Winston-Salem NC 27105. Customers can pay inside or at the drive-through window.

STAY AWAY FROM CONSTRUCTION SITE

Construction leaders working on the business 40 improvements are warning people to stay away from the construction site. They're worried about all the rubble, glass, falling concrete, even needles. That's exactly what prompted the state to put employees through extra training.

The city said, "If you see a needle, don't touch it. If there are needles, or there are spoons, if there is anything else as we have found out here that could have a fine film of Fentanyl on it, and that is not something that you want to touch."

The needle problem has been so bad, an outside company came in to clean up parts of the area.

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