WILMINGTON, N.C. (AP) — A popular North Carolina ferry route is set to close for three months to allow crews to perform repairs.
The StarNews reports the N.C. Department of Transportation will close the Southport-Fort Fisher ferry beginning Monday to update ramp equipment at both ferry terminals.
The department’s ferry division said contractors expect work on the approximately $3 million project should be done by early April.
The work comes after a failure of the ramp system on the Southport side of the ferry shut down the route for five weeks in August and September.
The ferry closure will be a headache for tourists and commuters. What was a 30-minute trip over the water could taken an hour-plus by road.
“We know the shutdown will be an inconvenience for commuters on that route, but it will result in more reliable ferry service in the long run,” Harold Thomas, the ferry division’s director, said in a news release.
Nearly 200,000 vehicles make the Southport-Fort Fisher crossing each year, the newspaper reported, citing state statistics.