Lake Norman & Mooresville

Advice to deal with speedway traffic

Local and state officials have this advice for the hundreds of thousands of fans attending big weekends of races at Charlotte Motor Speedway: Get there early, pay attention to signs and police, and be patient.

That's the same advice authorities have given the last few years, and it apparently has worked.

"We've had a pretty good traffic flow the last few years," says Scott Cooper, vice president of communications for the speedway, which will host NASCAR's Coca-Cola 600 on May 29. "The system works best, though, when people plan ahead."

After the major races, traffic flow will be reversed on U.S. 29, Bruton Smith Boulevard and Morehead Road.

"Fans trickle in," said Scott Cole, of the N.C. DOT. "But when they leave, they leave at once. So after the race, all roads lead away from the speedway."

The only change this year will be on Morehead Road, officials say. A construction project has moved a portion of the road away from the speedway.

"It means we'll have fewer people walking in the road before and after races," said the speedway's Doug Cremer.

The best advice: Arrive early, or eave plenty of room to travel to local spots.

"If you allow yourself some extra time and plan your route, you should have no problems," said Capt. Doug Hayes of the N.C. Highway Patrol.

After the races, fans can expect to be away from the track in 21/2 hours or less.