WAKE FOREST — “Christmas has come early this year,” was the reaction from town of Wake Forest Communication Director Bill Crabtree when he announced the reopening of Rogers Road, signaling relief to drivers weary of battling closures on a major thoroughfare between Wake Forest and Rolesville.
Floodwaters from Hurricane Matthew in early October washed out a section of the road between Heritage Gates Drive and Hobblebush Way when the 48-inch metal drainage pipe was overwhelmed and failed, exposing city of Raleigh water lines as well as a gas line.
After inspecting the road, N.C. Dept. of Transportation officials determined a larger culvert would need to be ordered, which took additional time.
Additionally, at the time of the hurricane, the western end of Rogers Road had already been closed for about five months while the N.C.D.O.T. replaced the bridge.
While the bridge work was completed basically on time, the construction crew working on the washout fell behind and opened nearly two weeks later than their original estimation, something that did not sit well with Rolesville Mayor Frank Eagles.
“It has been a long 60 or so days,” Eagles wrote in a letter to town residents in response to criticism on social media. “Rogers Road is a state of North Carolina-maintained road. It is not a town of Rolesville municipal road and the damage actually occurred in Wake Forest,” he said.
“Know that I have worked hard for all of you and visited the site almost daily since construction started. This whole process could have been done better by the State of North Carolina. It was not,” he wrote.