Hampstead neighbors block off private roads to beach traffic


PENDER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — You may remember last year WWAY reported on a Pender County community that pays to maintain its own private road and started charging a toll for drivers using it as a cut through to Surf City.

This year part of that cut-through is blocked off completely.

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The makeshift toll booth was set up last year on Cedar Avenue.

Cedar Avenue intersects with Doe Ridge Road, which is another cut-through from Highway 210.

Those who live on Doe Ridge are a separate community from those who live on Cedar and pay separate fees to maintain their individual roads.

The Doe Ridge residents have completely blocked off the intersection and say they plan on keeping it this way.

“We haven’t had any traffic come through here, maybe one or two cars all day,” Doe Ridge resident Victoria Quinn said. “This is Friday before Memorial Day, and this time last year, it was like it was a regular road, I mean, car after car, after car would come through here.”

She says they decided to install a barricade to cut down on beach traffic,  but also to stop their neighbors from using a road they don’t pay to maintain.

“We’re hoping to keep this the way it is for a while, and then in the future, we’re hoping to have some kind of a gate that would be easy to access. So when hurricanes come, you can leave through the gate,” Quinn said.

Kenneth Barker lives right across from that intersection on Cedar Ave. He just moved there in November and says he was under the impression he had the right to use that road.

“My neighbor Tim, his deed is Deer Run. We’re the last two of Deer Run,” Barker said.

Pender County property records confirm Barker’s claim, but residents of Deer Run say that was a mistake made by attorneys and barker is not a part of Deer Run and does not pay their road maintenance fees.

Barker says he’s fine with that as long as he doesn’t have to pay the fees.

Now, Cedar Ave. is blocked off as it undergoes repairs.

Barker and others are left with just one way in and out.

“The only way that me or anybody else here now can get out of this area here on Cedar Ave. is we have to go all the way down and exit out into Surf City area,” Barker said. “And go back up Highway 50 to get wherever we’re going. We can’t go out and exit onto Highway 210 no more.”

Representatives of the Creek Estates community said the closure is expected to last through Monday and emergency services, buses, and mail and package services are aware of the closure.