The Southgate Project created a new interchange from Rt. 460 into Virginia Tech, improving safety and traffic flow for those traveling to and from the south end of the campus. This extensive project included two new roundabouts, on Duck Pond Drive and Research Center Drive, to reduce time spent at traffic lights and to provide drivers with easier and safer left-hand turns.
The innovative diverging diamond interchange replaced the existing intersection of Southgate Drive and Rt. 460. It relocated Research Center Drive to allow for expansion of the Virginia Tech Montgomery Executive Airport, which is situated next to the University’s Corporate Research Center. This extension will allow for larger airplanes to use the airport, which in turn will allow more business travelers to utilize the Research Center. It also set the stage for future expansion of the Center.
Branch Civil and its partners were committed to completing this project without the disruption of the nearby Huckleberry Trail, a popular walking and biking trail used by community members for recreation and for commuting to work and classes. Parts of the trail also benefitted from improvements; sections of it were paved, and an extension of the trail brought it farther into neighboring Christiansburg.
Branch Civil worked closely with university representatives during the Southgate project to avoid traffic disruptions during important university events, sometimes working around the clock to complete work before the arrival of students for a new semester.