I-77 widening imminent, expensive, difficult | CLT Blog

I-77 widening imminent, expensive, difficult

Posted on 12 Apr 2008 by Justin Ruckman

Widening Interstate 77 in south Charlotte, from uptown to I-485, would cost at least $1 billion — twice the price of building the 9.6-mile Lynx Blue Line. (…)

Almost every bridge over the expressway must be rebuilt if the road is widened. There isn’t much room for widening it, and when I-77 approaches uptown, there are steep drop-offs on both sides of the shoulder. The state may have to buy commercial land for right-of-way, driving up the price even higher.

Another hurdle is that I-77 is already the busiest stretch of highway in the state, carrying 160,000 cars a day. (…)

One possibility (…) would double-deck the road by building an elevated section in the median of four lanes.

The state and the city of Charlotte are also discussing expressways that would be good candidates for high-occupancy vehicle toll lanes, or HOT lanes. These lanes would be reserved for car-poolers and single drivers willing to pay to drive there.”

Read more by Steve Harrison at The Observer.


  1. Avatar of Jak
    Jak 13 Apr 2008 at 6:27 PM

    i almost am glad of some of the errors made in charlotte’s early city planning. the 3 laned 77 has forced us to look outside of the atlanta solution to traffic problems, more lanes. and the noose that is 277, while cutting off uptown in many ways, has caused interesting pockets of development, not allowing uptown to have much sprawl, setting up great areas for new development, like south blvd.

  2. Rosie 14 Apr 2008 at 4:30 PM

    I totally agree Jason. I also think that maybe instead of adding more lanes we can look into building up public transportation. If it’s accessible, people will use it. If they do, then there will be less traffic on the roads.

  3. Avatar of Ben Ullman
    Ben Ullman 14 Apr 2008 at 10:50 PM

    also agreed. I commuted on 77 for awhile. The traffic’s not bad. (Of course, this coming from someone who drove halfway around the DC beltway daily for like 2 years… it can only get better from there…)