Horse Pen Creek Road widening project

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GREENSBORO, N.C. -- Some homeowners in Greensboro are ready to get the show on the road with construction on Horse Pen Creek Road.

As the Department of Transportation moves forward with a road-widening project there, some are learning their properties and homes will be torn down in the name of progress.

In order to alleviate traffic and make the road safer, the project plans for four lanes of travel divided by a landscaped median. There will be a bike lane and sidewalk on both sides.

The stretch of Horse Pen Creek involved is 3.4 miles from Battleground Avenue to New Garden Road.

"It's kind of pointless to spend money on a house that's going to get torn down," pointed out Janice Mereba. She's one of at least three homeowners who tells FOX8 their homes will be in the path of the new road.

She first heard of the proposal during a bond referendum in 2008 but did not realize it would involve her own home. "I didn't expect I'd be living in a house that was going to get torn down."

Mereba says traffic has ticked up alongside her house and she agrees the widening project is necessary. Her frustration is with waiting for an offer on the value of her home and property. "We don't have any information about what prices we're likely to get. It's just like, 'Oh we're going to tear down your house one day,'" she said.

According to the project website, right-of-way acquisition will begin next month. Construction is set to begin in Spring 2015 and should be complete in Summer 2017.

Some businesses could benefit from the project, says owner of Beans Boro Coffee Shop Kyle Burg. "I think it will increase traffic flow and make it more of a pleasant experience in general so you're not having to fight to get in and out this side of the center," he explained.

Beans Boro is in a shopping center at the corner of New Garden Road and Horse Pen Creek. Burg believes a more functional road will bring more customers his way.

Several churches, schools and homeowners will lose property because of eminent domain.

The N.C. Eminent Domain Law Firm will host a free informational session on Thursday at 7p.m. at the Greensboro Marriott Downtown.

There is a drop-in meeting August 13 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 4 to 7 p.m. for anyone interested in the project. The meeting will be at St. Paul the Apostle Catholic Church Gymnasium at 2715 Horse Pen Creek Road. There will not be a formal presentation, according to the flier announcing the meeting.