OUTER BANKS, N.C. (WAVY) — After several years of construction and delays, the North Carolina Department of Transportation was able to open all lanes to Outer Banks’ newest bridge.

The Rodanthe Bridge, also being called the “Jug Handle” Bridge, is a 2.4-mile project built in order to bypass N.C. 12 on days when overwash closes the roadway. It extends over Pamlico Sound between the southern end of the Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge and the village of Rodanthe.

After several delays, including one due to pavement marking issues, the $155 million bridge all lanes were opened to the drivers on July 28 by 12:30 p.m.

Courtesy: North Carolina Department of Transportation

“Intermittent daytime lane closures on the bridge will still be necessary in the coming weeks,” added NCDOT officials, citing some electric work needing to be done.

After those cables are attached, crews say pavement and sandbags on the bypassed section of N.C. 12 will be removed, allowing it to return to its natural state.

The road removal project is expected to be complete by the end of November.

The Rodanthe Bridge is the third new bridge to be completed on N.C. 12 in the last five years. The Captain Richard Etheridge Bridge over New Inlet was completed in 2017, and the Marc Basnight Bridge over Oregon Inlet opened in 2019.

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