DOT will improve Jacksonville area highway signs

Reporter: Katy Harris

Confusing Jacksonville highway signs

JACKSONVILLE, ONSLOW COUNTY - What seems like constant road construction around Jacksonville has made driving routes confusing for drivers unfamiliar with the area.

The Department of Transportation says coinciding routes like Highways 17, 24 and 53 confuse drivers.

"There's been quite a few new roads that of been built in the last few years and there's always new population coming into Jacksonville and so there's always some unfamiliar motorists and that's we try to sign for," said DOT Assistant Division Traffic Engineer George Eckart.

One confusing area is Highway 53.

The highway was extended after overhead signs were installed.

That means you can only see you're on Highway 53 from much smaller roadside signs.

Eckart says when overhead signage is updated, Highway 53 will be added.

"Military people-they really don't know where they are. They've only been here two, three years. They still don't really know where the area is," said Chicos Tire Company Tire Technician Luis Silva.

Silva gives customers directions over the phone using visual cues to help.

"It's more easier for them to see a bunch of things that look like what they just heard and be like oh I think this is the place," said Silva.

Eckart says that the other problem starts with a handy mapping device that a lot of us use every day.

He says Google Maps isn't as up-to-date as it should be for the Jacksonville area.

Eckart has been contacting Google Maps to get local mapping updated.

In the meantime, Silva will have to keep giving customers a step by step visual guide.

"More information gives them better understanding of where they are," said Silva.

Officials say it will take 5 to 10 years to update the overhead signs.

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