Thursday, December 2, 2021

City Closes Raleigh Intersection After 6 Cars Crash Into Home

A guardrail along New Hope Road in Raleigh.

— With around 200 homes in Raleigh’s Brookstone community, the neighborhood has several entrances. But because of continued accidents involving one family’s house, the subdivision will now have one less.

Six times over the past decade, drivers have lost control on a sharp curve on New Hope Road and have slammed into Carlo Bernarte’s home. Two of the accidents were fatal.

“It destroyed my entire living room and parts of the second floor,” Bernarte said.

Bernarte said he, his wife, and his children lost sleep, each night living in fear that another driver would lose control and kill them.

When it gets darker, he said there’s always that possibility.

Transportation officials have installed guardrails, LED lights and warning signs to no avail.

As a last resort, they’re now shutting down the intersection and extending the guardrail.

Transportation officials describe the debate over whether to close the intersection as one of safety versus convenience.

But the grinding of a jackhammer brings a big smile to the face of Bernarte.

“It’s really a big deal for me and my family, it was like really a fight,” he said.

The closure cuts off a busy access point to the Brookstone community, funneling all that traffic onto a road that resident and home owner association board member Melissa Rambarran said can’t handle it.

“There’s already a lot of congestion there with buses but it’s very dangerous because it’s a high traffic area,” Rambarran said.

Rambarran argues homeowners weren’t given enough notice, and she has doubts the closure will solve the problem.

“The issue isn’t vehicles coming in and out of the entrance point it’s because of the curve on New Hope so his concern is still there that vehicles will still end up in his home,” she said.

But Bernarte said he’ll be sleeping better.

“We can use our living room we can actually watch TV sitting in my living room or in the dining room from a distance and we don’t have that thing going through our mind every time nighttime falls,” he said.

The HOA has threatened legal action to halt construction here and is circulating a petition.

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