Memorial Day weekend travelers look to beat traffic, get to beach faster through Monroe Expressway

Expressway helping holiday drivers beat traffic

UNION COUNTY, N.C. (WBTV) - You are not alone if you can’t stand the thought of sitting in traffic. Nearly 43 million people are expected to be on the road this Memorial Day weekend according to Triple AAA. Some drivers who are heading to the coast are doing what they can to get to the beach as fast as possible using the Monroe Expressway.

The expressway opened last November and NCDOT officials said it will be great for anyone traveling this summer because the bypass will help you beat traffic.

Having dozens of brake lights flash in your face as you sit in bumper to bumper traffic can be a pain.

As drivers take the Monroe Expressway they say they’ll have more time to soak up the sun while on the beach. Officials for Turnpike Authority, a division under NCDOT, say on average drivers have reported saving 20 minutes.

“It’s great going through the small towns, but when you’re on the road for three, four, or five hours, it’s nice to save 20 minutes here and there,” said one holiday traveler.

Taking the bypass will cost you about $4 each way and it could be cheaper depending on which exit you get off.

“You can’t really argue with the comfort of getting there quicker, less stress from traffic,” said Alexander Alvarado who takes the expressway regularly.

According to NCDOT, Fridays are the busiest of travel days. That’s why for some drivers a trip on the toll to get their weekend started earlier is a no-brainer.

“Who likes traffic? No one likes traffic,” said Alvarado.

“No I hate it,” said Wisam Roustom , another driver.

They also say there’s a nice view on the expressway.

“I mean it’s beautiful, the scenery is nice. We enjoyed it; it was smooth sailing,” said Roustom.

By the numbers it seems like the trend of taking the expressway to defeat traffic is catching on. Turnpike Authority says so far they’ve had 12.5 million cars on the toll since opening in November.

Copyright 2019 WBTV. All rights reserved.