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Posted at 09:35 AM ET, 05/07/2012

Metro delays, Beltway progress, lane closings: the week ahead for traffic, transit

The work week starts with clouds, moves into a rainy period, then finishes with sunshine, the Capital Weather Gang says. High temperatures will be in the 70s most days.

The travel forecast for the D.C. area includes a big improvement for Beltway drivers in Virginia, but some of the same old issues of lane closings, construction and Metro maintenance will delay other travelers.

Metro weekday track work

Red Line: Between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. weekdays, trains will share a
A Metro train pulls into McPherson Square station. (John McDonnell/The Washington Post)
track between Shady Grove and Twinbrook.

From 10 p.m. until the rail system’s midnight closing Monday through Thursday, trains will share a track between Van Ness and Friendship Heights, and between Takoma and Forest Glen.

Riders should add 10 to 15 minutes to their normal travel times, Metro said.

Orange Line: From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. weekdays, trains will share a track between Federal Center SW and Eastern Market. Add 10 minutes to normal travel times.

Blue Line: From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. weekdays, trains will share a track between Federal Center SW and Eastern Market, creating 10-minute delays. (The Orange and Blue lines share the tunnel in this area, so the delays are the same.)

From 10 p.m. to the rail system’s midnight closing Monday through Thursday, trains will share a track between Stadium-Armory and Addison Road, and between Arlington Cemetery and Pentagon City. Add 10 minutes to normal travel times, Metro said.

Beltway/I-66

Commuters on the Capital Beltway’s inner loop near Tysons Corner should find significant relief this week from a work zone bottleneck at the Interstate 66 interchange.

The Virginia Department of Transportation worked over the weekend to restore the fourth lane on I-495 north at I-66 and open a fifth lane that will benefit drivers coming from I-66 east and heading for the inner loop’s exit to Route 7.

This is in the work zone for the 495 Express Lanes, also known as the high-occupancy toll lanes. Drivers have been shifted around as new work areas were required. But they’re starting to see some benefits, even
At Interstate 66 and the Capital Beltway, overpasses link HOV lanes with the 495 Express Lanes. (Courtesy of Virginia Department of Transportation)
though the project won’t be complete till the end of the year.

Beltway/Telegraph Road

From 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and from 9 a.m. to noon Friday, the ramp from Telegraph Road South to North Kings Highway will be closed for roadway construction.

At the above hours and also from 8 p.m. Friday through 10 a.m. Saturday, the ramp from Telegraph Road South to the Capital Beltway’s outer loop will be closed.

Dulles Access Highway

Drivers heading east from Dulles International Airport late at night next week will find the Dulles Access Highway closed, but here’s the worst part: The eastbound traffic will be diverted onto the Dulles Toll Road and drivers will pay the $1.50 toll at the main toll plaza.

It’s very unusual for traffic to be diverted from the free airport access road to the toll-paying lanes. But the Dulles Metrorail project announced that the closing is necessary to complete the last part of the flyover bridge that will bring the track for the new Silver Line out of Tysons Corner and into the middle of the Dulles highway.

Project managers don’t want anybody driving under the elevated work zone.

The closed portion of the Dulles Access Highway will extend from Centreville Road to just past the main toll plaza. The closing will be imposed from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. Sunday through Thursday nights and from 9 p.m. to 7 a.m. Friday night.

The closings probably will be necessary the following week, as well.

Marcia McAllister, spokeswoman for the project, said signs would be in place to alert drivers about the closing.

A driver who really wants to avoid the toll could head north on Route 28 to reach Route 7, or south to reach Route 50 or Interstate 66.

Fairfax County Parkway/Fair Oaks

Look for delays and detours at the intersection of the Fairfax County Parkway and Fair Lakes Parkway over the next two weeks, the Virginia Department of Transportation said.

From 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. weeknights, workers will be placing beams for the bridges that will carry traffic over Fair Lakes Parkway and Monument Drive.

Drivers heading to the Fairfax County Parkway from Monument Drive will be detoured to West Ox Road between 9 p.m. and 5 a.m. each night this week.

The rebuilding of the intersection is scheduled to be done in 2013. It will widen more than three miles of the Fairfax County Parkway and separate local and parkway traffic through this intersection area.

Maryland lane closings

These lane closings are scheduled for this week in the vicinity of Maryland State Highway Administration projects.

Wisconsin Avenue between the D.C. line and Bradley Boulevard: Single lane closings from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. weekdays.

Piney Branch Road: between D.C. line and University Boulevard: Single lane closings, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. weekdays.

Southbound I-270 at Little Bennett Creek Bridge: 9 p.m. Monday to 4 a.m. Tuesday, single lanes will close while traffic is shifted to a new configuration.

Kenilworth Avenue over the Beltway: Single lane closings from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. weeknights, with possible full closings of up to 15 minutes from midnight to 5 a.m.

Northbound Baltimore-Washington Parkway between Baltimore city line and Anne Arundel County line: single lane closings from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. each night through Thursday.

D.C. no parking signs

The District Department of Transportation announced a new policy requiring that all “Emergency No Parking” signs be electronically printed. Handwritten signs are not valid in public spaces and will be removed by inspectors.

DDOT said the change will make it easier to track the posting of no parking signs and help residents determine if posted signs are valid.

Applications for the permits can be submitted via DDOT’s Transportation Online Permitting System , and the no parking signs can be printed at the Public Space Permitting Center, 1100 Fourth St. NW, between 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. weekdays, as well as at most D.C. police stations.

Bike to Work Day

May 18 will be your annual chance to see what it’s like to bike to work in the D.C. region, accompanied by a support team.

More than 10,000 commuters will organize themselves into convoys at 58 designated gathering points and make the trip to work. Cyclists can register to get a free Bike to Work Day T-shirt at these pit stops, along with free food and drink and a chance to win a bicycle or other prizes.

To register online and get more details about the pit stops, visit www.biketoworkmetrodc.org.

By  |  09:35 AM ET, 05/07/2012

Categories:  Commuting, Metro, Driving, Biking, Capital Beltway | Tags:  DC transportation, Metro, WMATA, Virginia Department of Transportation, Maryland Deparatment of Transportation

 
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