Wake Forest Road (WFR) Closure and Detour Issues
Mordecai CAC Traffic and Communications Report


The Mordecai CAC Traffic and Communications committees have been in recent contact with City Council, the City Manager’s office, and the various department heads and project managers for the corridor, water, and sewer projects which are adversely impacting WFR and lead to a complete closure of WFR last week due to sink holes detected during the repaving process.

Philip Bernard, Mordecai CAC Traffic chair met on Saturday, October 12, with Ed Buchan, Senior Utilities Analyst with the City of Raleigh on site on Wake Forest Road and discussed at length the many moving parts of the various projects being implemented in this area including the problematic detour routes. We have passed along resident’s concerns to all parties.

At the heart of this conversation was the major fail of the detour routes which while advertised in advance of the road closure did not go as planned. According to Buchan, it came down to several primary issues for which he takes full responsibility. One, the route was not truthed or driven by him or another qualified City staff person to iron out any potential kinks or issues. Two, there was and continues to be improper or insufficient signage to clearly mark the routes for residents and non-residents alike. Three, some of this can be blamed on the unplanned detection of sink holes which lead to a stoppage of the corridor project under one department, contractor, and project manager (Beth Quinn), and then being taken over by Ed's department and their contractor which is not particularly adept at unplanned road closures and traffic detours. The combined effect of these issues lead to confusion about the routes,particularly to non-local drivers and buses (Wake County was notified but the message did not get to drivers). Neighborhood construction traffic and large tractor trailers clogged things up on narrow City streets and some people were unable to get out of their homes, etc due to placement of barriers to name a few. The RPD was not looped in and no representative came to the October 8 Mordecai CAC meeting to give heads up.

We appreciate Ed's candid assessment of the things that went wrong and his up-front commitment to continue to correct mistakes for the duration of the project that were made due to the factors noted above. The North End is going through a huge transition currently with the corridor project, the sewer and water line replacement project, the Capital Blvd bridge replacements, a new elementary school, new streetlights, plus tons of new residential construction, and the continued revitalization of Person Street. It should also be noted that finding and correcting these utility issues at this time will avoid having to tear the street up at later date. We appreciate everyone’s patience and concern through these major improvements and ask everyone to remain vigilant and keep safe.

If anyone has any specific concerns about the street closure, we urge you to contact Ed directly at:

Ed Buchan
Senior Utilities Analyst
Raleigh Water

For further updates, we also encourage you to follow the Mordecai CAC, Raleigh Water, and Raleigh Design/Construction on Facebook and/or Twitter:


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