President Donald Trump’s visit to Charlotte on Friday afternoon will wreak havoc on traffic at the start of the Labor Day weekend, one of the busiest travel times of the year.
Charlotteans who had planned to leave town for the last gasp of summer might want to start their engines now.
Roads near the airport and Carmel Country Club in south Charlotte will be closed for short periods between noon and 6 p.m., police say. Significant delays are expected on Billy Graham Parkway, Interstate 77 and the Johnston Road and Carmel Road areas of south Charlotte.
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AAA Carolinas expects nearly 1.1. million N.C. residents to travel 50 miles or more from home this weekend. The vast majority will travel by car.
Trump will land at Charlotte Douglas International Airport at 2:15 p.m., according to his official schedule, and be driven to Central Piedmont Community College’s nearby Harris Conference Center. He’s expected to sign an executive order there that makes it cheaper for small employers to offer retirement savings plans.
At 3:10 p.m, the president will leave the conference center for Carmel Country Club, where he’ll hold a roundtable meeting with supporters and attend a fundraiser for Republican congressional candidates Mark Harris and Rep. Ted Budd.
Trump will leave Carmel for the airport at 5:15 p.m. and take off enroute to Washington, D.C., at 5:55 p.m.
Charlotte-Mecklenburg police advise drivers headed to the airport to avoid Billy Graham Parkway. They recommend that drivers reach the airport on Little Rock Road, I-85 or northbound I-485 to Wilkinson Boulevard.
CMPD said that, for security reasons, it can’t release the times that specific roads will be affected.