The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Thursday April 22nd

Updated: Buses, groceries and more — what's open now?

Shoppers at Harris Teeter have a hard time getting what they need before Hurricane Florence because bread, water, milk and eggs are scarce at stores.
Buy Photos Shoppers at Harris Teeter have a hard time getting what they need before Hurricane Florence because bread, water, milk and eggs are scarce at stores.

With Hurricane Florence set to make landfall in the Triangle Thursday, Orange County declared a state of emergency, encouraging residents to prepare for extreme weather and power outages that could last for days. 

Here is what you need to know if you are staying in the Chapel Hill area:

Stay informed

  • Orange County Text Notifications will be sent even if the power goes out. Text OCStorm to 888-777 to receive the latest updates. 
  • The Town of Chapel Hill will open a call center for non-emergency questions at noon on Thursday. The number is 919-969-5005. If you are experiencing an emergency, call 911 immediately. 


The Town of Chapel Hill is encouraging residents in these flood-prone areas to evacuate before the storm makes landfall: 

  • South Estes Drive near Willow Drive
  • Camelot Village Apartments off of South Estes Drive
  • Brookwood Condominiums off of South Estes Drive
  • South Estes public housing neighborhood on Estes Drive Extension, near University Place
  • Umstead Drive between Umstead Park and Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard
  • Cleland Road between Kendall Drive and Hayes Road
  • West Franklin Street at Mallette Street
  • East Franklin Street at Park Place

Public Parking 

The town will suspend all parking enforcement at public parking facilities beginning from 8 a.m. Thursday through Saturday. Do not move your cars to public parking facilities before the storm, as the town will use the facilities for emergency vehicles. The Park & Ride lots on Eubanks Road and at Southern Village are available for anyone who chooses to move their car. 

Emergency Shelters 

Orange County will open two emergency shelters beginning at 6 p.m. on Wednesday. The shelters will provide food and water, and service animals and pets will be allowed in. Make sure to take your pet’s full vaccination record and a photo with you and your pet to the shelter. 

The two shelter locations are:

  • Smith Middle School, 9201 Seawell School Road, Chapel Hill. 
  • CW Stanford Middle School, 308 Orange High School Road, Hillsborough. 


  • Chapel Hill Transit will operate on Wednesday as normal so long as conditions are safe. Starting Thursday, Chapel Hill buses will stop running until further notice. 
  • All P2P operations and PASS Cart services will stop beginning on Thursday until further notice. 
  • Chapel Hill Transit will operate shuttles from Downtown Chapel Hill Franklin Street at Varsity Theater (#3428) and Columbia at Rosemary (#3383) bus stops to the emergency shelter at Smith Middle School from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Wednesday. Shuttles will operate every 15 to 20 minutes.

Grocery Stores

Harris Teeter, Food Lion, Trader Joe's, Weaver Street Market, CVS Pharmacy, Walgreens plan to continue their regular hours until further notice.

Chapel Hill Library 

  • No items will be due to the library starting Thursday until Monday. That means there won't be fines or overdue materials during that time. 
  • The time period for items on hold is extended.

Other Town Services and Events  

Town facilities, including the library will stay open as long as weather and power allow. 

All town-sponsored programs and events are canceled starting Wednesday at 5 p.m. through Saturday, Sept. 15.

Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools

All schools and district offices will be closed on Thursday and Friday. Weekend activities are also canceled.

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