Toll-lane construction has been going on for a year now on I-77 from Huntersville to Mooresville. Now it's starting on the stretch of I-77 near uptown Charlotte. That means lane closures and traffic shifts ahead.
The work near uptown began quietly in recent weeks, but hasn't affected Charlotte drivers so far. That's about to change.
“After Thanksgiving you will see more work going on, as the construction picks up pace in the Charlotte area,” said Jean Leier, of I-77 Mobility Partners, the private company building the $648 million project.
The southbound High Occupancy Vehicle lane on I-77 will be closed from north of I-85 to Oaklawn Avenue near uptown. Meanwhile, lanes will shift on the rest of the road as workers add two toll lanes in both directions.
The lane closure and shifts will remain until construction finishes in late 2018.
Workers have been installing safety barriers and grading near the I-77 interchange with I-277, the Brookshire Freeway, the most complex part of the 26-mile project.
“That area near I-77 and the Brookshire is what we call the most structure-heavy area of the project,” Leier said.
It includes ramps to and from I-77 southbound to 277, from 277 to I-77 northbound, and Leier said there’s a new ramp in the works from 277 to I-77 southbound as well.
When it's all done, I-77 will have two optional toll lanes from Brookshire Freeway north to Exit 28 in Cornelius, and one toll lane from there north to Exit 36 in Mooresville.
You can find out more on the project website at I77Express.com