HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) — The Huntersville town board unanimously supports the redesign choice of a major interchange that the N.C. Department of Transportation says is the “superior option.”
At Monday night’s Board of Commissioners meeting, the board was tasked with choosing between two “reduced conflict” alternatives for the N.C. 73 interchange with Beatties Ford Road and Brown Mill Road, which connects the previous two.
N.C. 73 is slated to be widened through the interchange to a four-lane divided highway between N.C. 16 in Lincoln County and Northcross Drive in Huntersville.
Brett Canipe with NCDOT said the chosen alternative provides greater mobility and efficiency. Drivers traveling northbound on Beatties Ford will have two lanes to turn left onto N.C. 73.
“With two left turning lanes feeding onto two lanes on N.C. 73, you’re going to process a lot more traffic,” he said.
At the interchange of Browns Mill and Beatties Ford, just south of N.C. 73, drivers on Brown Mill will not be able to drive straight through. They instead will be able to turn either direction onto Beatties Ford.
In Alternative 2, drivers could go straight through on Brown Mill at Beatties Ford, but there would be limited turns from the other roads onto N.C. 73.
Other features of the interchange include:
- Westbound N.C. 73 drivers would have to turn left onto western interchange with Brown Mill to travel south on Beatties Ford.
- Southbound Beatties Ford drivers can only turn right onto N.C. 73
- Eastbound N.C. 73 drivers wanting to to north on Beatties Ford would have to travel past interchange and make U-turn at Brown Mill.
Canipe said the Battle of Cowans Ford Monument on Beatties Ford Road would have to be moved.
Canipe said the cost has “gone up dramatically” since planning began in 2018. The total cost of the N.C. 73 widening will cost $77.7 million. Right-of-way acquisition is currently underway, and construction is slated to begin in May 2026.
Huntersville is planning a town-funded project to add a lane on Beatties Ford Road at Gilead Road. But because of a gas line, there would not be a continuous second lane connecting N.C. 73/Brown Mill and Gilead.
There will be public meeting about the design chosen: Nov. 14, 2-4 p.m. and 5-7 p.m. at Lake Norman Baptist Church.
Commissioner Stacy Phillips was recused from the discussion since her parents own property in the area.
Also at the meeting
Near the previous intersection, a 100-plus-home 55-and-older community was approved on a split vote.
Developer Epcon will build 118 single-family homes on a 79-acre property off Beatties Ford Road in northwest Huntersville.
Commissioners voted 3-2, and town planning staff did not support the conditional rezoning. The land is being changed from large-lot, single-family homes to transitional-residential.
In addition to the homes, there will be three mini parks. On-street parking will be provided where lots are 60 feet wide or less.