The paving of Main Street and beyond is on again in Highlands

Work to begin March 2021

A couple years ago talk about paving Main Street began. The project, which entails milling about two inches of old asphalt, clearing it away, repaving and marking the road was supposed to begin early spring a year ago.

Main Street near Reeves Hardware is in need of repair.

Due to funding, it was delayed and it looked like it would be cancelled indefinitely.

“It has been delayed one year due to statewide financial constraints and one year because it must be started on March 15, 2021 to be completed by Memorial Day,” said David Uchiyama, NC DOT Communication Director.

However, the N.C. Department of Transportation officials recently announced it awarded three separate contracts totaling more than $6.7 million to resurface more than 26.2 miles of roads in Graham, Jackson, Macon and Swain counties.

Main Street showing signs of age in front of Town Square.

Work within the Town of Highlands is slated to begin on March 15 with milling operations and paving scheduled to be completed by May 21 as weather and temperatures allow.

“The schedule for the repaving of Main Street, US 64 and NC 28 had been delayed. We were concerned that the current NCDOT funding crisis would delay it even further,” said Mayor Pat Taylor. “I am delighted that funds became available so the project can move forward. There are degraded areas on US 64 and NC 28 that needed attention without further delays.”

Work is needed on the road entering Highlands from Highway 28 as drivers approach Bryson’s Plaza.

The contract includes the following work:

  • Asphalt resurfacing of U.S. 64 beginning at N.C. 106 (1st Street) and continuing through the Town of Highlands along U.S. 64 east to Buck Creek Road.
  • Asphalt resurfacing of N.C. 28 beginning at U.S. 64 (4th Street) in the Town of Highlands and ending at Clear Creek Road.
  • Asphalt resurfacing of Main Street, beginning at U.S. 64 and ending at 5th Street, in the Town of Highlands.
  • Asphalt resurfacing of Whiteside Mountain Road, from U.S. 64 east to the end of the state-maintained limit.
  • Asphalt resurfacing of Ellijay Road, from Little Ellijay Road to U.S. 64/N.C. 28.

WNC Paving of Waynesville has been awarded a contract to resurface 9.7 miles of N.C. 28 in Graham and Swain counties. Crews will be allowed to begin this work on April 15 and have until Oct. 15 to complete the contract.

Main and 4th Streets are long overdue for repairs.

Harrison Construction of Asheville has been awarded a contract to resurface 5.5 miles of U.S. 64 in Jackson County from the Transylvania County line to Cedar Creek Road for $1.3 million. Crews will be allowed to begin this work on April 15 and have until Oct. 15 to complete the contract.

Harrison has been awarded another contract for $2.7 million to resurface a total of 11 miles of U.S. 64, N.C. 28 and three secondary roads in Macon County. Crews will be allowed to begin this work on March 15 and have until Oct. 15 to complete the contract.

By Kim Lewicki, Highlands Newspaper
Photos by Brian O’Shea

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