Korea Expressway Corporation announced on March 7 that it is expanding the traffic capacity at the interchanges to support the Winter Olympic Games in 2018 as the amount of traffic at Daegwallyeong Tollgate, the gateway to freeways to Pyeongchang in where the main stadium and outdoor venues are located, and Gangneung Tollgate, the gateway to Gangneung where the athletes’ village and ice rink are located, is expected to increase during the Olympics.
The construction to improve safety facilities at the Yeongdong Expressway, Jungbu Expressway and Jungbu Naeryuk Expressway, which are located in the gateway to Pyeongchang, will be completed by the end of this year. To improve the safety, old concrete roads will be re-paved with quality asphalt for better ride comfort and all the safety and traffic management facilities, such as median strips, guardrails and soundproof walls, will be remodeled. All the lamps in streets and tunnels at the Yeongdong Expressway will be changed to LED lighting, while variable message signs (VMS) and CCTV surveillance systems on roads will be improved and expanded.
In June, a 71.7-km long Seoul-Yangyang Expressway East Hongcheon-Yangyang section, which connects a metropolitan area with the eastern coast, will be opened. Accordingly, the travel time from Seoul to Yangyang will be reduced by 40 minutes from 130 minutes to 90 minutes.
Korea Expressway will also install new canopies designed with symbols of the Winter Olympic Games on four toll gates, including Daegwallyeong, Gangneung, Myeonon and Jinbu. It will also post slogans and images that contain messages about successful hosting of the Olympic Games via traffic signs, highway facilities, variable message signs (VMS), websites, blogs and standing signboards.
The rest area at the Yeongdong Expressway will develop new dishes for foreigners and install a foreigner-only menu for convenience. It is also considering the demonstration of autonomous vehicle technology during the Olympics.