Robeson County Opposes Closure of U.S. 74 Exit Ramps at I-95
The Robeson County Board of Commissioners has asked to state Department of Transportation to reconsider its decision to close the U.S. 74 exit ramps at I-95.
The DOT has announced plans to permanently close Exit 14 so that it can widen U.S. 74 to four lanes. It then plans to build a new high-speed off-ramp south of the existing Exit 14 to bring it up to modern interstate standards.
The Robeson Board of Commissioners had originally asked the DOT to keep the Exit 14 ramps open until the new interchange was complete. It is now asking that the exit be kept open 'perpetually.'
The new interchange would be located roughly 1,000 yards south of Exit 14. It would be a four-lane, clover leaf exit designed to easily accommodate high-speed I-95 traffic merging onto the ramp.
In their request to the DOT, Robeson commissioners said that closing the Exit 14 ramps now would hurt drivers traveling south on I-95 and east on U.S. 74, forcing them to travel and additional three miles down the road before they would have the opportunity to turn around.
The exit closure could also hurt local business that are used to serving customers on their way into the city of Lumberton. Nine potentially affected businesses are also sending letters to the DOT pleading to keep exit 14 open.