The updated pipe will prevent flooding to surrounding properties, neighborhoods and developments, including the site of the new 40,000 square foot retail development, South Green, which is set to begin construction in June, once the pipe has been set.
The Carrboro Planning Department is involved in the development of South Green that will begin after the 60-day period. Trish McGuire, the department’s planning director, said the road will undergo extensive construction.
“The project involves going underneath the roadway as well as parallel to the street in order to connect everything,” McGuire said.
While the road closure and the South Green development are two separate projects, McGuire said that the end result of construction will change traffic flow in a positive way.
Bethany Chaney, a member of the Carrboro Board of Aldermen, further expressed reasons for moving forward with the project, citing climate change and the steep landscape as factors contributing to increased flooding around South Greensboro Street in recent years.
Chaney said the business formerly located on the future site of South Green could not sustain the flooding issue and had to relocate.
She said the Town of Carrboro has received a variety of helpful feedback and concern regarding the road closing to begin construction for the new development.
“Nobody likes to have traffic inhibited by a period of construction,” Chaney said, “But the community understands that (the storm drainpipe replacement) is a DOT project and not a city project.”
Chaney said she wishes the town had been able to give its residents more of a heads up for the road closing, but time did not permit the NCDOT to give a more advanced notice.
The road closure will also affect the J bus route, which will have a detour.
Nonetheless, Chaney expressed excitement for the long-term results of the drainpipe and new development.
“Even if it means an inconvenience for a short time, everyone will be pleased in the end with the change in speed and traffic flow that will come out of it,” she said.
Leah Edwards, a UNC graduate and Carrboro resident, commutes to work at Oasis, a coffee shop in Carr Mill. She said the two months of road closure will affect her daily routine.
Edwards said she usually uses her car and bicycle for transportation, but if she wants to drive to work during the next two months, she’ll have to take another route. She said Carrboro residents weren’t made aware of the closure or detours ahead of time.
“All I’ve seen is one flashing sign on the road yesterday,” Edwards said.