Q: Travelling on Salem Parkway East, what is the reasoning for having only one downtown exit between Peters Creek and 52? To get to Main Street the fastest, I am having to get off at 52 North, do two loops to get on Salem Parkway West, and get off on the Main Street exit.
Answer: According to Pat Ivey, division engineer with the N.C. Department of Transportation, the biggest safety problem on this stretch of what is now Salem Parkway before the improvement project came from the numerous short ramps and tight weave/merge areas between ramps.
"There was simply not enough room between Peters Creek Parkway and U.S. 52 to leave all existing ramps in place and lengthen the ramps and eliminate the weaving problem," he said. NC DOT presented two interchange options to the public back in 2014, either the Cherry-Marshall Streets or the Liberty-Main Streets.
"The Cherry and Marshall Street interchange option was ultimately selected as the preferred alternative, which required the Broad Street ramps and the Liberty/Main Street ramps to be permanently closed," Ivey said.
"Drivers heading east on Salem Parkway can access Main Street by taking the Marshall Street exit #233B, go across Marshall Street, turn left on Cherry Street and then turn right on Second Street straight to Liberty and Main Streets."
Q: Why did the exit numbers change so drastically when Salem Parkway opened?
Answer: Mile markers are placed on all interstates and major multi-lane highways within the state, Ivey said, with exit numbers that correspond to the closest mile marker assigned to the specific route.
For example, exit number 192 on I-40 (Peters Creek Parkway) is closest to mile marker 192 on I-40.
"The old exit numbers and mile markers were established for 'Business 40' after the I-40 Bypass opened, beginning with -0- on the west side and 17 on the east side," Ivey said. "Now that Business 40 no longer exists, the new exit numbers correspond to the U.S. 421 mile marker numbers, which is the official route designation for the road."
Q: Are there any traffic cameras along Salem Parkway?
Answer: "Currently we have limited traffic camera coverage along US-421/Salem Parkway as construction continues to work toward installing new and upgrading existing cameras and message boards throughout the project," said Michael S. Venable with the N.C. DOT. "Our current camera coverage on the west side of the projects begins near Lockland Avenue. On the east side of the project, our camera coverage begins near 5th Street."
Q: Why is the e-edition of the Winston-Salem Journal not available until around 8 a.m. every day, when the print edition is available much earlier? I am a longtime subscriber to the print edition, but when I travel I read the e-edition.
Answer: The morning e-edition newsletter generally goes out about 8 a.m., but the e-edition is live much earlier on the website, sometime after midnight. You can find it directly at www.journalnow.com/eedition.