CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The West Virginia Turnpike near Beckley has opened its new six-lane upgrade just in time for the holidays.

The $140 million Beckley Widening Project allowed the Turnpike, between mile markers 40 and 48, to open three northbound and southbound lanes.

“This is a tremendous improvement, a much-needed project that had been considered for several years. We’re very thankful for Gov. Justice’s Roads to Prosperity program which made this happen for the thousands of people traveling to and through our state,” said Jeff Miller, Executive Director of the West Virginia Parkways Authority.

Despite the Parkways Authority and West Virginia Division of Highways’ decision to open all lanes ahead of the holiday season, the project still awaits final paving, which will be completed as soon as “asphalt plants reopen in the spring of 2022.”

About 750,000 vehicles are expected to travel the Turnpike the week of Thanksgiving, over 100,000 more vehicles than in 2019.

Extra toll booth staff, the West Virginia State Police, the Courtesy Patrol, and extra flaggers will be stationed during this time.

To avoid congestion, travelers are advised to avoid peak traffic times between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.