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NC 35 bridge closes Thursday

CONWAY – Work to replace the Sykes Mill/Kirby Creek Bridge on NC 35 will soon begin.

According to North Carolina Department of Transportation (DOT) Resident Engineer Scott Emory in the Ahoskie office, a portion of NC 35 will tentatively close Thursday.

DOT will be replacing the existing bridge, located between Conway and Pendleton, with a new and wider bridge, which will help accommodate farm equipment that often travels on the road.

“We’ve always had problems, concerns from people about farm equipment getting through the bridge,” said Emory.

He estimated the bridge to be 60 to 70 years old.

In the meantime, motorists will be detoured using secondary roads.

Emory said in the previous weeks, DOT widened and repaved those roads for the traffic being detoured. He added the detour route will be clearly marked with signs.

The following is the detour laid out by DOT:

For motorists traveling north on NC 35: Turn right onto US 158 in Conway towards Murfreesboro, turn left at the stoplight onto US 158 Business crossing into Hertford County, left onto Wise’s Store Road (SR 1300) near Food Lion, right onto Vaughan Mill Road (SR 1301), which turns into Vaughan Creek Road (SR 1351) back into Northampton County and to NC 35.

For motorists traveling south on NC 35: Turn left onto Vaughan Creek Road, which turns into Vaughan Mill Road at the Hertford County line, left onto Wise’s Store Road, right onto US 158 Business and right at the stoplight onto US 158 traveling back to NC 35 in Conway.

The North Carolina Board of Transportation recently awarded contracts totaling nearly $52.3 million for highway improvement projects in 15 counties across the state; $2.7 million of that amount will go towards replacing the Sykes Mill/Kirby Creek Bridge.

Work on the bridge was contracted to S.T. Wooten Corp. in Wilson. The anticipated completion date for the project is Dec. 1.