Drivers in Beaufort County no longer have to dodge orange barrels and construction equipment. The much-delayed Highway 17 project is now finished.
Barrels were removed Monday afternoon along the 4-mile section of the highway south of Chocowinity. The project, which expands the heavily traveled highway from two to four lanes, was originally scheduled to be finished last September.
But five different completion dates were missed and the D.O.T. ended up fining the contractor $1,500 a day because the project was so far behind schedule.
The project ties into the Washington bypass, while another 5 miles of Highway 17 north is currently being expanded to four lanes as well. That project is being done by a different contractor.