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Urgent repairs coming to Cullasaja Gorge; Buck Creek Road to be utilized as Macon County detour for five days

HIGHLANDS – A section of U.S. 64 in the Cullasaja Gorge will be closed for five days starting June 6 in order for a contractor to repair a critical wall and for N.C. Department of Transportation crews to safely conduct additional maintenance. 

A basket wall supporting a section of road is failing and needs to be replaced to prevent catastrophic failure and a long-term closure of the highway. Crews from GeoStabilization International will install a micro-pile wall, and NCDOT crews will utilize the closure to conduct a series of additional maintenance operations.

U.S. 64 will be closed from Buck Creek Road to Brush Creek Road starting at 8 a.m. on June 6. This section of highway in Macon County will reopen by 5 p.m. on Friday, June 10. 

The marked detour directs drivers to use Buck Creek Road in both directions. Local traffic will be allowed into residential areas off U.S. 64.

During the closure, crews will conduct additional operations that are difficult to perform under normal conditions. They will re-establish the ditch along the entire highway, repair all low-shoulder areas, long-arm mow trees and brush, hand cut vegetation near guardrail, repair culverts and conduct other maintenance. 

“It’s important that we address the failing wall very soon in order to prevent a bigger issue,” NCDOT County Maintenance Engineer Kenny McCourt said. “While it’s closed, we’ll take advantage of the opportunity to safely complete several other maintenance projects that would require a lane closure.” 

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