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Warmer Weather Brings Backlog of Road Projects to Blue Ridge Parkway

As summer months draw travelers to the Blue Ridge Parkway, visitors are reminded to plan ahead and stay informed about ongoing road construction projects occurring this season.

Multiple road maintenance projects are underway this year, resulting in a variety of impacts along several sections of the historic route. These projects, aimed at enhancing infrastructure and preserving the Parkway’s natural appeal, include roadway resurfacing, bridge repair and replacement, improved signage, and other improvements to upgrade infrastructure.

To aid visitors in navigating construction and planning trips, the Parkway has introduced new features on its website.. These tools include up-to-date alerts to inform visitors of project zones, as well as interactive maps indicating the exact locations of closures and detour routes. By using these resources, travelers can plan ahead and minimize disruptions to their Parkway visit.
“Road projects underway on the Parkway this year represent a significant investment in preserving and enhancing this national treasure for generations to come,” said Blue Ridge Parkway Superintendent Tracy Swartout. “We encourage visitors to plan ahead, stay informed, and use the resources available on our website to ensure a safe and memorable experience this summer.”
Funding and project management for road maintenance along the Blue Ridge Parkway is planned in cooperation with the Federal Lands Transportation Program (FLTP), and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). In addition to regular FHWA funding, the Parkway is also benefitting from historic infrastructure investments made possible by the Great American Outdoors Act (GAOA), a concerted effort to address the extensive maintenance and repair backlog in national parks.

The Blue Ridge Parkway is slated to receive more than $200 million from GAOA for multiple projects to address long-needed infrastructure improvements. Approximately 85% of the Parkway’s nearly $450 million maintenance backlog is attributed to maintenance needed on paved roads and areas in the park.

Visitors can expect road construction in the following sections this season:
Milepost 27.3 – 37.6, 64.6 – 86.2, 89.1 – 97.2, in the areas of Montebello, James River, and Peaks of Otter, Virginia
Improvements Underway: Pavement preservation resurfacing.
What to expect: Single-lane closures with reduced speeds and traffic control.  Bicyclists and motorcyclists are advised to find alternative routes while pavement preservation work is curing due to hazardous conditions from loose gravel. Pavement preservation applies a new surface to existing asphalt, helping to slow deterioration, promoting safer driving conditions, and allowing the road maintenance budgets to go further.
 
Milepost 97 – 121 (GAOA-funded), in the Roanoke, Virginia area
What to expect: The design build phase of this project is underway with short, single-lane closures possible for survey and design work throughout the 2024 season. Full closures could begin later in the year, with most of the construction occurring in the 2025 and 2026 seasons.
Milepost 223.8, 224.7, and 227.5, in Alleghany County, North Carolina
What to Expect: Full closure between milepost 221.8 to 230 with signed detour in place via NC 18 to the North Carolina/Virginia line. Access to Doughton Park recreation area, including the campground and The Bluffs restaurant, is available via NC 18. Construction is expected to continue until Fall 2024.
Milepost 248.1 – 249.3 (GAOA-funded), near Laurel Springs, North Carolina
What to Expect: Milepost 248.1 to 249.3 is closed to all activity (cars, bicycles and hikers) to ensure the safety of Parkway visitors and staff during construction. Continuous access to Doughton Park recreation area and The Bluffs restaurant will be available via NC 18. Detours are in place to direct visitors around the construction via route(s) NC 18, NC 88, US 221, NC 16, and Trading Post Road at Glendale Springs, NC. Mountains to Sea Trail users should anticipate an approximately 200-yard closure at the base of the bridge, at which point trail users should follow the fence line around the project site. Construction is expected to continue until summer 2025.
Milepost 229 – 305 (GAOA-funded), from the Sparts/Doughton Park to Blowing Rock/Grandfather Mountain areas in North Carolina
What to Expect & Detours: Construction along this 75-mile section of the Parkway is expected to continue through Spring 2026, and includes phased closures and single lane closures possible across different sections. Continuous access to Doughton Park recreation area and The Bluffs restaurant will be available via NC 18. Detours are in place to direct visitors around the construction in the northern section of the project area (MP 229-276.5) via route(s) NC 18, NC 88, US 221, NC 16, and Trading Post Road at Glendale Springs, NC.  Construction in the southern half of the project area (MP 276.5-305) could begin as soon as late summer or early fall 2024.
The Blue Ridge Parkway is one of the largest designed landscapes in the country, providing visitors with a wide variety of opportunities to experience southern Appalachian nature, history and culture. While road construction is underway, the majority of the Parkway is open. The best source for up-to-date detour maps, daily road status information, facility schedules and links to updated project information is the Parkway’s website and alerts and conditions page.

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