The long awaited Highway 17 bypass for Washington & Chocowinity opened to traffic just before 1:00 p.m.
The 6.8 mile long highway was supposed to open around 11:00 a.m. and cars lined up to be among the first to use the new highway. But some final work delayed the opening by about two hours.
The D.O.T. held a ribbon cutting for the $200-million project February 26th and said the actual opening would be delayed while final work was being finished.
The project will eliminate Highway 17 traffic going through the two towns and should eliminate traffic congestion. The project includes a three-mile long bridge, and is eight months ahead of its original completion date.
Another project, widening Highway 17 South of Chocowinity is expected to be completed later this year.