As Haywood County looks to put the Coronavirus Pandemic squarely in its rear-view mirror, a North Carolina Department of Transportation bridge replacement project smack dab in the center of the county could end up causing a colossal multi-year traffic jam with far-reaching financial implications.
Lake Junaluska has received a certificate of approval from the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality authorizing construction activity to begin on the restoration of the bridge over the dam.
For over a century the sound of wheels on wood have greeted residents of and visitors to the Lake Junaluska Assembly alike as cars, trucks, people and pets cross the bridge over the Lake Junaluska Dam.
Building a footbridge over the Tuckasegee River will likely wind up costing more than twice the $641,000 it was originally supposed to, Jackson County Commissioners learned when bids for the project came in this summer.
The bridge carrying eastbound Main Street traffic across the Little Tennessee River in Franklin will be close to 90 years old by the time its newly planned replacement is up and running at the end of 2017. The N.C. Department of Transportation will take care of costs for the $2.1-million project — almost.
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