Labor Day weekend brings the summer to an unofficial close. If you’re heading out of town, take a look at Dr. Gridlock’s Summer Getaway Guide before you hit the road. If you’re staying in town, make sure to look at our roundup of Labor Day transit/transportation changes.
The Capital Weather Gang forecast calls for potential rain Saturday and cloudy, rainy conditions Sunday. Labor Day should be a humid, rainy day, so remember that before you head to a cookout.
Several events this weekend could also impact traffic. College football returns this weekend, while the Nationals are back in town. The Labor Day Concert at the Capitol is scheduled for Sunday at 8 p.m. As always, visit the Going Out Guide for a more complete list of activities.
Here are some things to keep in mind for this weekend. (Some of this has appeared in our Labor Day preview and elsewhere, but we’re reiterating the important stuff. Again, read the Labor Day preview for what to expect on Monday.)
College football returns
College football returns to the region Saturday. Two games could impact traffic: The Terps host William & Mary at 3 p.m. in College Park. (There is no maintenance scheduled for the Green Line this weekend.) In the District, Howard University takes on Morehouse College at RFK Stadium at 3:30 p.m.
Games at Nationals Park
The Nationals host the St. Louis Cardinals on Friday (at 7:05 p.m.), Saturday (at 4:05 p.m.) and Sunday (at 1:35 p.m.). A four-game series against the Chicago Cubs kicks off Monday at 1:05 p.m. Expect heavy congestion on trains heading to and from the ballpark before and after the game, in addition to traffic around the area.
Metro weekend work/schedule
Metro has work scheduled on the Red, Orange and Blue Lines this weekend. The work begins Friday at 10 p.m. and lasts until the system closes Monday night.
Metrorail and Metrobus will both run Sunday schedules Sunday and Monday. Metrorail is open from 7 a.m. to midnight Sunday and Monday.
Trains will single track between Rhode Island Avenue and Fort Totten so that platform reconstruction can take place. Red Line trains will run between Shady Grove and Grosvenor every 15 minutes in each direction. Additional trains will run between Shady Grove and NoMa-Gallaudet U on Saturday and Sunday between 9:30 a.m. and 9 p.m. If you’re traveling through the single tracking, add at least 10 minutes to your trip.
Trains will single track between Stadium-Armory and Cheverly, also to allow for platform reconstruction. Orange Line trains will run every 20 minutes in each direction. Again, add at least 10 minutes to your trip.
Trains will share a track between Arlington Cemetery and Foggy Bottom. This is for structural rehabilitation of the track bed and leak mitigation, according to Metro. Blue Line trains will also run every 20 minutes in each direction, and you should add at least 10 minutes to your trip.
SmarTrip minimum fare and rebate
This is yet another reminder about two SmarTrip changes going into effect this weekend. Beginning Saturday, you will need at least $1.20 on a SmarTrip before you can enter the system. Additionally, if you register your card online Saturday or beyond, you can get a $3 rebate. (Cards will still cost $5.)
School resuming on Tuesday
Beulah Road bridge work
The Beulah Road bridge over Wolftrap Run in Fairfax County is being rehabilitated over the next few months. The Virginia Department of Transportation will reduce the road to one lane beginning Wednesday so crews can repair abutments and bearings, among other work. This should take until December.
Collage Street closing in Vienna
The Virginia Department of Transportation is reconstructing Cottage Street between Walker and Patrick streets in Vienna. This project, which will last until May 2013, involves a new sidewalk, asphalt pavement and other work. Cottage Street will be closed to thru traffic, which will be detoured around the work. Local traffic can still access the road.
Northern Virginia HOV Lanes
HOV restrictions will be lifted on Interstate 66, Interstate 95 and Interstate 395 on Monday. Normal HOV restrictions are in place Friday and will resume Tuesday.
The I-95/I-395 reversible lanes will run southbound from 1 p.m. Friday to 2 p.m. Saturday. These lanes will reopen heading north at 4 p.m. Saturday and remain northbound until 11 a.m. Tuesday.
Ramp from route 123 reopening in Tysons
The old ramp running from southbound Route 123 to westbound Route 7 will reopen Thursday at 5 a.m. now that tunnel construction in that area related to the Dulles Metro project has been completed.
Leesburg Pike in Tysons Corner closing overnight this week
Crews will close the intersection of Leesburg Pike and Tyco Road/Westwood Center Drive on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday nights between 9 p.m. and 5 a.m. the following mornings. They will also close it from 9 p.m. until 9 a.m. on Friday night and into Saturday morning. This is for utility work. Thru traffic will be allowed on Leesburg Pike, but thru traffic on Tyco Road/Westwood Center Drive will be detoured.