Wednesday, May 16, 2007

"The Colon-Kelly Connector"

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I think I know my way around the area pretty well. Probably a little too well, in fact. Sometimes, it would be fun to get lost on a bunch of unfamiliar roads somewhere. But there are still areas around here that I don't know quite as well. The closest I've come to getting "lost" around here is in Lee County. Here's a map:

Lee County is home to Sanford, the disc golf course I played last weekend, a couple of Piggly Wiggly stores, and not much else. When I came back from my original Piggly Wiggly trip, I got a little lost. I thought I was on Business US-1 north heading back towards the US-1 bypass, but instead, I was on San-Lee Road, heading east, back towards Broadway and the Piggly Wiggly I just visited 10 minutes ago. Oops.

Then, on my way back from the disc golf course, I thought I would investigate a new road. I've seen glimpses of a new expressway being built around here, but I've never really been sure what it was all about. Then, on Saturday, I noticed that a short segment of the expressway was open! The signs only called it the "Colon-Kelly connector", semmingly because it goes between Colon Rd and Kelly Dr. The expressway extends beyond those points, but this two- or three-mile stretch was all that was open. And they didn't even open both lanes; they had the left lane barreled off in both directions. So it wasn't much. And I didn't know where I was going, either. I didn't know what "Kelly" I was connecting with at first, whether it was a road or a small town. Personally, I think it would have been better if the road connected with "Pancreas Dr" or "Rectum Dr".

My sense of direction isn't great when I'm on unfamiliar roads. So, I didn't know what direction I was going when I was driving on the connector. But fortunately, the expressway-to-be had exit numbers, so they could give me some idea. The exit numbers were decreasing, which means I was either driving south or west. That's funny - I thought I was driving north or east. Hmm. So, no help there. Eventually, I made it to Kelly Dr, turned left, expecting to be heading west back towards US-1 or something. But, nope. A couple of turns later, I made it to...San-Lee Road! Aaahhh! But hey, at least I know where I am at this point. Maybe I should go to Piggly Wiggly while I'm over here. I made my way towards NC-42, turned left, and expected to have to make another right to get to the Broadway Piggly Wiggly. But, wrong again - I needed to turn right on NC-42 to get there. Bah! Oh well - NC-42 is a fun road, and it even goes through Fuquay-Varina. So, that was that.

So, what is this "Colon-Kelly Connector"? I couldn't find it on any maps. Here's an approximation of where I think it goes: (It's the black line.)

While looking at this map, I figured it out. This parallels US-421, which goes through downtown Sanford. It's a future US-421 bypass! And, I was going east, but the reason the exit numbers were decreasing is that even though US-421 is mostly east/west in North Carolina, it is a north/south road overall. (US-421 goes from Wilmington, NC to Michigan City, IN.) So, I was heading east on what is going to be "southbound" US-421. The exit numbers make sense, too - Kelly Dr was Exit 145, and that's about how far it is to Wilmington. Ding!

Mystery solved. And, as soon as I find out the bypass is completed, I'll be there. (I'm not holding my breath, though.)

Today's random thought:
(This week's random thoughts on "24" will be incorporated into Friday's post, which will talk about the upcoming "24" and "Lost" season finales. For today, here's a plain old random thought.)
- I've already talked about the milk color scheme that grocery stores use to differentiate all of the different varieties of milk. It's a good system, because I don't even look at the labels anymore; I just go straight for the green. This is easy, because Kroger is now the only grocery store I go to. But what if Kroger were to suddenly change their color scheme? Then I might accidentally take a jug of 2% home with me instead of 1%. Oh no! Hopefully, they won't do that.

1 comment:

Rita Taylor said...

If this bypass interests you, look at my blog article about it at: http://www.realestatesanfordnc.com/2007/09/24/sanford-nc-us-421-bypass/

There are a couple of more sections that should be opening in the next couple of weeks.