RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – The North Carolina Department of Transportation has planned temporary lane closures for U.S. 1 north of Raleigh.

Contractors plan to install overnight lane closures to investigate soil conditions for a future project to improve the highway.

Starting Wednesday evening, the left lane of southbound U.S. 1 will close between Thornton Road and Interstate 540. Those closures will be in place from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. on weeknights. Closures are expected to continue over the next couple weeks. They will not in place on weekends.

NCDOT said drivers should slow down when approaching Thornton Road. People should anticipate the possibility of slight delays. Drivers should also watch for crews working close to the travel lanes. 

A future project would focus on the portion of U.S. 1/Capital Boulevard between Interstate 540 in Raleigh and Purnell/Harris Road in Wake Forest. The state is planning to turn the two lane road into a four-lane freeway with paved shoulder lanes on each side. Drivers would only be able to get on using interchanges. Service roads would be used to access businesses alongside the road.

NCDOT said between 32,000 and 65,000 vehicles travel through that stretch a day. By 2040, it’s expected that traffic to be as high as 75,000 per day. NCDOT said upgrades could relieve congestion and travel time. The project would cost about $750 million.

The first section scheduled for work would be from I-540 to Durant/Perry Creek Road. The state expects a company would be chosen for the project by October 2024.