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Confirmed: A Tornardo Hit South Charlotte, Crews Begin Work On I-77 Toll Lane Tunnel

The National Weather Service has confirmed a tornado did strike southwest Charlotte this week. The service says the tornado hit Wednesday evening with maximum winds of 90 miles per hour, causing damage along a 1.5 mile stretch of John Price Road, and along a 0.5 mile stretch from Microsoft Way to West Arrowood.

The region saw heavy wind and rain during Wednesday's storm. At least one building was damaged, a tractor trailer was blown over, and power was knocked out for thousands of Duke Energy customers across the city.

The service confirmed a second tornado occurred in Greenville, South Carolina around the same time. The service says it had winds of up to 110 miles per hour.

Slow-Traffic Expected As Crews Begin Work On I-77 Toll Lane Tunnel

Construction crews will begin blasting a tunnel for the new I-77 toll lanes this weekend. The tunnel is being constructed on I-77 northbound, just north of the I-85, I-77 interchange. The Charlotte Department of Transportation says ramps leading to that portion of I-77 will be temporarily closed.

The department says the work will take place on Saturday, and possibly Sunday, between the hours of 6 and 9 a.m. Drivers should expect slow-moving traffic during those times. Law enforcement will be on hand to assist with traffic.

Drivers will also begin to notice new traffic patterns over the next several weeks as crews set up temporary barriers and place new pavement markings. The new traffic pattern is scheduled to be in place for approximately nine months.

The entire I-77 toll lane project is expected to be complete in 2018.

Duke University Names New President

Vincent Price has been chosen by Duke University's board of trustees to become the school's tenth president. Price is currently provost of the University of Pennsylvania, serving  in that position since 2009. He's not to be confused with the late film actor of the same name.

Price will succeed Richard Brodhead on July 1 of this coming coming year. Brodhead announced in April that he planned to step down after 13 years as president.

Nick de la Canal is the host of Weekend Edition on Saturday/Sunday mornings, and a reporter covering breaking news, arts and culture, and general assignment stories. His work frequently appears on air and online. Periodically, he tweets: @nickdelacanal