Ask 13: DOT's changes on Overlook Road, safety improvement or big mess?


    "The road is a mess and is laden with problems," a viewer wrote about the Overlook Road project. "Grading, drainage, lane width, no shoulder, no lighting, no signs, and these awful rumble strips. Way too many issues in such a small area. Help!" (Photo credit: WLOS staff)

    An improvement project was meant to keep South Asheville drivers safe after a terrible accident.

    But some of those changes are not sitting well with local residents.

    An anonymous viewer asked us to do a follow-up on the Overlook Road improvement project that happened a few years ago.

    "The road is a mess and is laden with problems," the viewer wrote. "Grading, drainage, lane width, no shoulder, no lighting, no signs, and these awful rumble strips. Way too many issues in such a small area. Help!"

    Some may remember that the curve on Overlook near Hendersonville Road was a dangerous spot. A terrible accident there claimed the lives of several teens a few years ago.

    As a result, the DOT made a list of improvements, including widening the road and slowing traffic with rumble strips.

    The strips led to complaints, so the DOT came back and made adjustments.

    While some residents might still be unhappy, the DOT says the improvements are working.

    David Uchiyama, the DOT communications officer for our area, looked into it for us. He says this project was developed to reduce lane-departure crashes along Overlook.

    He says only one lane-departure crash has happened in the four-and-a-half years since that project.

    But before the project's construction, Uchiyama says, there were 12 lane-departure crashes within three years.

    The DOT says the report shows the changes have improved safety.

    If you have a question, write us at Ask13@wlos.com.

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