Entire I-77 Express Corridor Now Available to Save Drivers Time
The southern section of I-77 Express from I-485 to I-277 in uptown Charlotte was opened by I-77 Mobility Partners last Saturday November 16. With this opening, drivers are now able to use all 26-miles of I-77 Express.
“Since I-77 Express opened on June 1 in the Lake Norman area, more than 2.7 million trips have been taken on the express lanes by over 515,000 different vehicles,” said Javier Tamargo, CEO of I-77 Mobility Partners. “We are proud to make this private investment to develop the first managed lanes in North Carolina.
Through partnership with NCDOT and Sugar Creek Construction, we are able to deliver this project and other infrastructure improvements along the existing portion of I-77 sooner than traditional funding would have allowed for the State of North Carolina and motorists. I-77 Express adds a travel option to a key interstate corridor and a new component to the Charlotte region’s comprehensive transportation network.”
I-77 Express is already improving travel in the corridor in both the express lanes and general purpose lanes. In October, average speeds during the morning rush hour increased by 15%, and speeds during the afternoon rush hour increased by 17% when compared to pre-opening speeds in October of 2018.
I-77 Express runs adjacent to the existing general purpose lanes. Drivers have the option of using the express lanes for more reliable travel times, the general purpose lanes or a combination of both. The number of free general purpose lanes remains the same.
In addition to the building of the express lanes, multiple structures were replaced, improved or newly constructed, including:
– New direct connector ramps at the I-277/Brookshire Freeway into and from I-77 Express
– Replaced I-277 southbound ramp to I-77 Southbound
– Replaced Oaklawn Avenue bridge and added new sidewalks, bike lanes and lighting
– Replaced LaSalle Street bridge and added new sidewalks, bike lanes and lighting, and extended the I-77 on-ramp all the way to the I-85 interchange
– New direct connector ramps providing access to I-85
– Replaced Lakeview and Hambright Road bridges, and added sidewalks, bike lanes and lighting, and new direct connector ramps to I-77 Express. (Drivers will be able to access the Lakeview Road Direct Connector approximately one week after I-77 Express opens)
– New pedestrian tunnel under I-77 in Huntersville for future connection of the Torrence Creek Greenway
– New roundabouts at the Griffith Street Bridge for the Town of Davidson
– Installed over one million square feet of noise walls along the corridor
– Rehabilitated the general purpose lanes in the corridor
Drivers can take a virtual ride now on I-77 Express by visiting www.i77express.com to learn how to use the lanes.
The express lanes have signage one-quarter mile ahead of each segment that clearly displays the transponder toll rate applicable to drive that segment. The toll rate displayed when entering I-77 Express is the price motorists will be charged for that segment. With the full opening of I-77 Express, regular scheduled rates apply, and the current 25 percent discount will expire.
Dynamic pricing will begin December 1, 180 days from the opening of I-77 Express on June 1. During dynamic mode, toll rates may change as often as every five minutes to accommodate changes in demand for I-77 Express. Toll rates will be based on segment length, time of day, and demand for I-77 Express.
I-77 Opens its Northern Section
I-77 highway opened its northern section, from Hambright Road to Exit 36 in Mooresville, last June 1. Thanks to this opening, drivers can live their first experience on the express lanes, which are operated and maintained by I-77 highway, as part of a public-private partnership with the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT).Read more