dr. g's tips

Dr. G's updates on Beltway shifts, I-66 lane closings

Sunday, July 11, 2010

HOT lane updates

-- Beltway/Braddock Road:

Watch for a new traffic pattern this week on the Capital Beltway's inner loop near North Springfield. The lane shift will remain in effect until late December as construction continues on the high-occupancy toll lane project, the Virginia Department of Transportation says.

Workers will rebuild the pavement between Heming Avenue and Braddock Road. Traffic will shift left into four lanes. The exit lane to the right onto Braddock Road will be shorter.

-- Beltway/Route 7: The Virginia Department of Transportation plans to shift westbound Route 7 (Leesburg Pike) traffic onto a new bridge over the Beltway this week. The eastbound lanes will shift to the old Route 7 westbound bridge, probably on Monday. All three lanes in each direction will still be available, but watch for delays approaching the intersection as workers prepare for the lane shift.

After the shift, overnight workers will begin to demolish the old eastbound bridge before construction starts on a new one.

-- Jones Branch Drive: Relocation of a sewer line on Jones Branch Drive is scheduled to begin this week. Jones Branch Drive will be reduced to one lane in each direction just after the Westpark Drive/Jones Branch Drive intersection to the southern entrance of the Gannett building in Tysons Corner.

Traffic stops

Watch for daytime traffic stops for up to 15 minutes on Route 7 just west of the Route 9 interchange Monday through Friday. Virginia Dominion Power crews will be pulling wires across roads. These are the time frames: Monday between noon and 3:30 p.m.; Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday between 9 a.m. and 3:30 p.m.; Friday between 9 a.m. and noon.

Dominion Virginia Power is building a 12-mile, high-voltage power line from a new substation northwest of Hamilton, near the intersection of Berlin Turnpike and Route 7, to a substation off Cochran Mill Road, east of Leesburg. There will be traffic delays through the summer. Here's the schedule from VDOT:

Late July-August: Stops will occur on the Route 7 Bypass, Dry Mill Road to Route 15.

August-September: This is likely to be the busiest period. Workers will be stringing lines along Route 7 and the Route 7 Bypass between Route 15 and River Creek Parkway.

Dulles Metrorail updates

-- Dulles Access Road: Westbound traffic on the access road is going to be shifted to the right this week to accommodate construction on the Wiehle Avenue station in the median. The eastbound lanes already have been shifted away from the work zone. The westbound shift is scheduled to begin overnight on Wednesday, but it will be done in phases over two weeks starting at the Wiehle Avenue overpass.

-- I-66 lane closings: The left lane of eastbound I-66 will be closed between 9:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and between 9:30 a.m. and noon Friday.

Antietam traffic

A popular destination for tourists from the D.C. area is about to encounter its own little traffic problem. Paving is set to begin this week on the tour roads through the Antietam National Battlefield in western Maryland.

The work, which involves resurfacing not only the roads but also the parking areas and paved walkways, is scheduled to be done this winter. The National Park Service says the work will be done in phases so that not all the roads are under construction at the same time and it will be easier for visitors to get around.

The battlefield park will remain open, but some sections may be closed temporarily.

New VRE crews

Riders will notice new train crews on Monday as Keolis Rail Services America takes over operation of VRE service after 18 years of Amtrak. If all goes as planned with the handoff, little else should be different for riders. Schedules won't change.

For more traffic information, go to http://www.washingtonpost.com/traffic.

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