NCDOT Rail Project in Harrisburg

NCDOT Update to Town Council (September 2016 Town Council Meeting)

Piedmont Improvement Program Background

The road and rail construction under way in the Town of Harrisburg is part of the North Carolina Department of Transportation’s Piedmont Improvement Program (PIP), a NC Department of Transportation (NCDOT) initiative to modernize highway and rail infrastructure and increase safety along the high-growth Raleigh to Charlotte corridor.

Municipalities affected by the PIP, like the Town of Harrisburg, did not request or initiate the project and do not contribute funding. Local government’s role in the project is coordination with NCDOT officials to minimize local impact and assistance in communicating project status to residents and businesses. The PIP will be completed in September 2017 because the firm deadline for funding occurs at that time.

NCDOT will be updating Harrisburg Town Council on project status every other month at Town Council meetings in December 2014 and in 2015 in March, May, July, September and November. Meetings are held at Town Hall, 4100 Main St. beginning at 6 p.m. Call Town Hall at 704-455-5614 for agenda information for a specific month.

For more information, contact NCDOT:

Jeff D’Arruda, EI
Deputy Resident Engineer

Quick Links For More Information

Town Council Letter to Residents (November 2014)
Town of Harrisburg Traffic Analysis (Kimley Horn Consultants)
Interactive Map of NCDOT Projects in Harrisburg
Harrisburg Project FAQ's
NCDOT Signing, Intersection Configuration & Pavement Marking: Caldwell Park
NCDOT Signing, Intersection Configuration & Pavement Marking: Caldwell Rd.
NCDOT Signing, Intersection Configuration & Pavement Marking: Roberta Rd.
NCDOT Signing, Intersection Configuration & Pavement Marking: Pharr Mill Rd.

Rail Projects

Harrisburg to Charlotte Railroad Improvements (Under Construction, Scheduled for Completion Spring 2017)

This project involves improving 12 miles of railroad track between Harrisburg and Charlotte. The track runs parallel to NC 49 and Old Concord Road. Construction will include grading of new railroad roadbed and installation of a second track.

  • As part of this project a new railroad bridge will be constructed to allow for a future extension of Mallard Creek Church Road in Mecklenburg County.
  • Some roads that intersect with the railroad tracks will be closed intermittently during the construction to complete improvements at the railroad crossings. These include:
    • Back Creek Church Road in Charlotte will likely  close mid to late July.  Exact date to be determined.  Per contract. The NCDOT Contractor (Crowder) has 30 days to complete their work.  However, additional time will be required for Norfolk Southern and NCRR to complete their track alignment and placement through the Back Creek intersection. 
    • McLean Road in Charlotte reopened  on June 24.
    • Orr Road in Charlotte  is scheduled to close the week of July 11, 2016 for approximately 60 days.  This intersection is and will remain closed for approximately an additional 30 days due to unforeseen utility conflicts that affected both contractors (Blythe Development and Crowder).  Norfolk Southern and NCRR will also have to complete their track work through the intersection.
  • The contractor will build railroad roadbed in sections, and the railroad subcontractor will begin laying track in these available areas.  Completion date for this work will be approximately late 2016.
  • Millbrook Road railroad crossing was closed on July 13, 2015.  

Pharr Mill Road Grade Separation 

This project involves building a new bridge and roadway to connect Pharr Mill Road to Blackwelder Road over the North Carolina Railroad.

  • The existing Pharr Mill Road railroad crossing will be permanently closed after the new bridge is constructed and opened to traffic, projected for Late Summer 2015.
  • The project will extend Saddle Creek Court creating a new railroad crossing with the NCRR for an improved access to NC 49 for Saddle Creek truck traffic.  Constructed, and opened on 11/8/14.
  • The Shamrock Road railroad crossing  is permanently closed as of November 8, 2014
  • The bridge was opened to traffic and the old crossing was closed on July 31, 2015. 
  • This project is complete and accepted.
  • The Department is in the process of abandoning a portion of Old Pharr Mill from Mulberry to Speed Rail to the Town per the Towns request, expected to be approved by NCBOT in June. Sent to Raleigh in June, to complete and process for Board approval.

Roberta Road Grade Separation 

This project involves building a new bridge and highway to connect NC 49 and School Circle Road to Stallings Road over the North Carolina Railroad.

  • Approximately 3,000 feet of the railroad tracks will be re-aligned to the north as part of this project.
  • Radius project at Robinson Church and Stallings complete.  Some additional work on shoulders and ditches still to be performed, as needed.
  • Robinson Church Road Extension (Harrisburg Veterans’ Memorial) bridge opened Friday August 5.  Robinson Church at the railroad crossing closed on Monday August 8.
  • Bridge deck has been poured.  The contractor will form and pour approach slabs and work on barrier rail and parapet wall.  Contractor anticipates having the bridge completed and ready for traffic by mid to late July.
  • Drainage issues along Hickory Ridge Rd have been redesigned by the Rail Division.  This work and another small drainage revision along Hickory Ridge and one on Stallings Rd. will after the work on Roberta bridge and School Circle is completed. Stallings drainage work completed.  Drainage revision along Hickory Ridge will begin as soon as pricing/cost is agreed upon by NCDOT and the Contractor.  This work will require lane closures, and will occur between 9AM and 2 PM (M-F).  The contractor may also work on the weekends.  This work will take a couple of  months to complete.
  • There was a revision to the crosswalks @ corner of Harrisburg Veterans and NC 49 that will require lane closures on NC 49 to install a new curb ramp, and striping for the crosswalk and the stop bar.

Caldwell Road Grade Separation 

This project involves building a new bridge and roadway on Caldwell Road to go over NCRR tracks.

  • The bridge was open to traffic in July 2015. 
  • Caldwell Rd was open to traffic in December 2015. 
  • Thermoplastic (final) pavement markings completed.
  • Contractor is the process of completing punch list items and final inspection is expected in July 2016. Final inspection was held. Contractor had a couple of minor items to complete before final acceptance.  Should be handled this week, after which all barrels and cones will be removed.

Caldwell Park Drive Extension 

This project will extend Caldwell Park Drive west into Mecklenburg County to allow for the closure of two private at-grade railroad crossings (Duke Energy and CMUD access) and one public at-grade railroad crossing, Millbrook Road.

  • This project is complete.  Final inspection was performed on 11/24/14. It was opened up to traffic on Friday 11/21/14.
  • The Department is in the process of abandoning Millbrook Road to the Town per signed agreement under project, expected to be approved by NCBOT in April or May.
  • Warranty review was held:  Contractor mobilized and repaired 2 small asphalt issues near the bridge.
  • Millbrook Road abandoned from State Maintenance in May, and is now a Town street again.  McLeod will be maintained by the Department until development progresses enough the Town takes over maintenance of Caldwell Park Extension. 

Additional NCDOT Projects

In addition to the above improvements along the railroad corridor, the following roadway and bridge projects are also under construction between Harrisburg and Charlotte:

Bridge replacements on Morehead Road, Pharr Mill Road, Stallings Road, and

These projects are included in a larger contract to replace a total of ten bridges in Mecklenburg, Cabarrus, Union and Anson counties.

  • Contractor Dane Construction has completed the Pharr Mill Road and Morehead Road bridge replacements.
  • The bridge project on Stallings Road began on 4/11/2016. The contractor has completed all work except for final pavement markings and punchlist items.  The bridge was opened to traffic on September 8, 2016.
  • The bridge replacement project on Robinson Church Road will be scheduled for Spring 2017, after the Stallings Road bridge project is complete. 

Raging Ridge Road Extension Project

This project is to extend Raging Ridge Road to Stallings Road, build bridge over Construction contract awarded to Country Boy Landscaping, with contract availability March 1st.  Completion date is December 2016, with final (vegetative) completion of April 2017.  The actual contract completion date per the contract is December 3, 2016. 

Doster Crossing

This project will build a new access to the Doster Property from Stallings Road that does not cross the railroad tracks, then close the existing track crossing to this property.

  • Project completed, final inspection performed, and accepted for maintenance.