Community responds to I77 construction - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

Community responds to I77 construction

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The Road Rehabilitation plan for Interstate 77 is expected to start in early May and people in the community have lots to say about it. 

James Ross is the owner of Kid Connection in Princeton and has been keeping up with the news about the construction on the Northbound I77 lanes. He's lived in Princeton for most of his life and feels a lot of the roads in that area need work.  "It's a catch 22," James said. "The road needs to be fixed completely and if they let it go much further, it's going to get worse and deteriorate. However, with the amount of congestion and the commercial vehicles coming back on exit 9, it's going to be a nightmare on the intersection where 77 and 460 meet."

The West Virginia Department of Transportation announced it will be doing construction on I77 Northbound, rerouting all commercial trucks at exit 1 towards Bluefield. The route takes the vehicles on John Nash Boulevard, to connect onto 460, to then connect back to I77 North at exit 9. 

One local business owner wants the DOT to re-route the traffic a different way. 

"Why don't they re-route the automobile traffic onto 460 and have the big trucks stay on I77," says Jerry Dove, owner of Dove's Custom Guns. "I'm sure the traffic engineers have a reason for it but to me, the cars would move better on 460 than the trucks. It will be less wear and tear on the road."

The DOT held a public meeting at Princeton City Hall on Monday, giving residents the opportunity to hear about the road plan and ask questions. The DOT said interstate 77 needs a lot of work to ensure that commuters have a better and safer traveling experience. 

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