Weather Postpones Opening Of New Highway 42 East Bridge

CLAYTON – A traffic shift planned Monday night on the Highway 42 East widening project in Johnston County was postponed due to  rain.  The shift is now planned for Thursday, June 18th, weather permitting.  If rain delays the Thursday shift, the work will take place on the next dry day.

A contractor for the N.C. Department of Transportation will permanently shift traffic onto a newly constructed bridge over the Neuse River. The shift will occur between Fox Ridge and Castleberry Roads.

After the traffic shift, crews will begin demolishing the existing two-lane bridge in order to finish constructing the new one, which will be higher and have five lanes when completed by 2022.

At the same time the new bridge is opened, eastbound drivers on Highway 42 will have a dedicated left-turn lane and a flashing yellow signal to go left onto Castleberry Road, reducing backups during the afternoon commute. The traffic signal will include a left-turn arrow when the bridge is fully built.

Construction began in late 2018 after the NC DOT awarded a $58.7 million contract to widen the congested two-lane highway to four lanes with a raised median and several new traffic signals between Glen Laurel Road and Buffalo Road. The improvements will reduce congestion, improve safety and better accommodate population growth anticipated to occur in the future.

Photos by John Payne