Whether you’re heading for one of the Nationals-Giants games at Nationals Park, Saturday’s Annapolis Cup croquet match at St. John’s College or Sunday afternoon's Cinco de Mayo Festival at the National Mall’s Sylvan Theater, the Capital Weather Gang projects a really nice weekend for travelers. But watch out for some transportation challenges on the roads and rails.
Metro weekend delays
Red Line: From 10 o’clock tonight through Sunday’s midnight closing, trains will share a track between Shady Grove and Twinbrook while crews work on the surface beneath the tracks.
Trains also will share a track between Takoma and Forest Glen while crews work on the automatic train control system, the surface beneath the tracks and the rail ties. (Still no date for a return to automatic operation of the trains.)
Throughout the weekend, trains will leave the ends of the lines at Shady Grove and Glenmont about every 24 minutes. From 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, trains will operate more frequently through an interior portion of the line between Friendship Heights and Takoma. Trains will arrive about every 12 minutes.
Yellow Line: From 10 o’clock tonight through Sunday’s closing, trains will share a track between Huntington and Braddock Road so workers can replace rail fasteners.
Race for Hope
The Race for Hope 5K walk/run is scheduled for 9 a.m. to about 11 a.m. Sunday in downtown Washington. The street closings are scheduled to begin at 5 a.m., and they should be reopened about 11 a.m. Metro opens at 7 a.m. Sunday. Federal Triangle and Metro Center are the closest stations to the start.
This is the route of the 5K: 12th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue NW (Freedom Plaza), south on Third Street NW, west on Independence Avenue SW, south on Fourth Street SW, east on E Street SW, north on Third Street SW, east on Maryland Avenue SW and north on First Street NW, west on Constitution Avenue NW onto Pennsylvania Avenue NW and back to 12th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue NW. See a course map (pdf).
These are the street closings:13th Street between E Street and Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Pennsylvania Avenue between 14th and Third streets NW, Third Street from Pennsylvania Avenue NW to E Street SW, E Street SW from Fourth to Third streets, Fourth Street from E Street to Independence Avenue SW, Independence Avenue from Fourth to Third streets SW, Maryland Avenue from Third Street SW to First Street NW, First Street to Constitution Avenue NW, Constitution Avenue from First Street to Pennsylvania Avenue NW.
11th Street Bridge project
The District Department of Transportation plans to create a new traffic pattern this weekend for vehicles entering the intersection of Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue and Good Hope Road SE from the outbound 11th Street Bridge. The department’s intention is to increase the size of the work zone and speed progress on construction of the new 11th Street Bridge and its approaches.
The change in the traffic pattern will occur in two steps:
From 10 o’clock tonight through 10 a.m. Saturday, workers will close access from the outbound 11th Street Bridge to Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue and Good Hope Road to allow for temporary pavement construction. The left two lanes of the outbound 11th Street Bridge will also be closed. The intersection of Good Hope Road and Martin Luther King, Jr. Avenue will remain open at all times.
Detour: Travel southbound on I-295/DC 295 to Howard Road to reach Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue and Good Hope Road. At Howard Road, turn left to reach Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue. Reach Anacostia Park via Howard Road.
Beginning Saturday, the ramp from the bridge to Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue will be closed.
Detour: Traffic heading for Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue will be detoured onto the Good Hope Road ramp. This detour will remain through 2011. Drivers should expect delays, especially during the afternoon rush. Traffic signals will be adjusted to accommodate the new traffic pattern, the transportation department says, but drivers still should consider alternative routes.
New York Avenue Bridge
Don’t let this week’s limited congestion at the New York Avenue Bridge construction zone lull you into a sense that the reduction of lanes from six to four won’t really be a problem. It's more likely traffic was down because of spring breaks than that many drivers chose alternative routes (see a pdf map) or signed up for the Bridge Bucks program to share rides or take transit. In the weeks ahead, watch for increasing traffic at the bridge, where the avenue crosses over the railroad tracks north of Union Station.
Watch for single lane closings and follow the directions of flaggers on Rockville Pike between First Street and Templeton Place during road work from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. Sunday through Thursday.
This coming week, expect to find up to two westbound lanes and two eastbound lanes closed on Constitution Ave. between 23rd and 20th streets for the National Park Service’s reconstruction of the avenue. The location of the lane closings within this zone may change daily. Crews are working on the utilities during the early stages of the project.
George Washington Parkway
Overnight Wednesday, the exit ramp from Memorial Bridge to the southbound George Washington Parkway and the exit ramp from Route 27 to the parkway will be closed. The closings, to install new median guardrails between the northbound and southbound lanes on the parkway, is set to begin at 7 p.m. Wednesday and end by 5:30 a.m. If the weather is bad, it will be rescheduled for May 10-11.
On May 10, 11 and 12, the National Park Service plans to close the exit ramp to southbound I-395 between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. to complete storm drainage work on the southwest side of the Humpback Bridge. The bridge project is scheduled to be done by late spring.
Beltway near Wilson Bridge
The Woodrow Wilson Bridge project plans to close the Capital Beltway’s outer loop THRU lanes next weekend. The closing is scheduled to begin Friday evening, May 6, and continue through mid-morning Sunday, May 8. During that time, workers will be placing a large storm drain across the THRU lanes.
The closing will extend from just before Telegraph Road to the Route 1 interchange. The two LOCAL lanes on the outer loop will remain open, and outer loop access to the Telegraph Road exits also will remain open.
The LOCAL lanes are called that because they provide access to local exits, but they all continue through to the Wilson Bridge and Maryland, so use them during the closing of the THRU lanes, or consider taking the 14th Street Bridge or the Legion Bridge to cross the Potomac River during the closing.
Next Saturday, May 7, from 8 a.m. to noon, the canal towpath from the 31st Street Bridge to the Mule Cross Over Bridge in Georgetown will be partially blocked for the C&O Canal Pride Days volunteer cleanup and maintenance event.
The towpath will remain open, but visitors may encounter minor and should be cautious moving through the work area, the National Park Service says.