DOT to start construction projects in Nags Head this week

Published 3:00 pm Wednesday, February 8, 2023

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The NC Department of Transportation is beginning road improvements to US 158 through the Town of Nags Head including milling, resurfacing, concrete curb ramps and pipe replacement.

The resurfacing project will be along Hwy 158 from Eighth Street to E. Gray Eagle. Fred Smith Company has been contracted for the project for a bid amount of almost $4.8 million.

DOT will remove and replace 1.5 inches of asphalt surface layer, totaling 31.9 lane miles, in four passes. This equals 21,700 tons of asphalt and will take over a thousand truckloads to haul, said DOT assistant division construction engineer David Otts, who presented a project overview to Nags Head commissioners at the February 1 regular meeting.

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Paving is set to begin this week, depending on the weather. Paving cannot occur when it’s raining, or when the temperatures are under 40 degrees.

Milling and resurfacing will begin on the south side, and work its way north to avoid conflicts with Hatchell and with Barnhill, which is paving in Kill Devil Hills, to meet the Nags Head project at Eighth Street.

Drainage improvements will include four crossline pipe replacements, repairs to various catch basins and drop inlets and shoulder reconstruction. Fred Smith Company already began shoulder work several weeks ago, evening out the areas where the shoulder is high or low, thereby reducing the standing water on the road. Standing water can increase a risk of hydroplaning and also leads to premature degradation of the roadway, Otts said.

Pipe replacement is also planned to start this week, subcontracted to Hatchell Concrete. Pipe replacements will begin on the north side of the project and work down to the southern end of town.

Pipes will be replaced on W. Oak Knoll Drive, Baltic Drive and the fire department.

DOT is also upgrading concrete curb ramps at Carolista, E. Epstein Drive and Mall Drive to make them ADA compliant.

DOT said it plans to come to a stopping point mid-May with approximately two-thirds of the project complete and “tidy things up” before tourist season begins, and return in late September or early October to complete the project.

Construction workers will work weekdays, during daylight hours only. Residents can expect delays during daylight hours. Milling and resurfacing will result in single lane closures not to exceed two miles in length and pipe replacements will result in multi-lane closures and a detour route through NC-12.

“It’s kind of one of those things that if we close the road entirely we can get it done much faster but it’s much greater impact of traffic. If we close lanes we’re going to be out there in the road a little bit longer, so we’re trying to balance those two,” said Otts.