Paving work on the Capital Beltway near the Telegraph Road interchange in Virginia is going to disrupt traffic on the outer loop for about a month, starting in two weeks. That’s when managers of the Wilson Bridge project plan to shift the Thru/Local split to just west of the Eisenhower Connector, after the Van Dorn Street exit. This is for the final paving of the lanes.
After the split is repositioned on the weekend of June 22-25, the Thru lanes will be in their final alignment. But until the end of July, there will be only one Local lane from the split to just past Telegraph Road. Then, all the outer loop lanes will be open in their final configuration.
The repositioning of the split and the change in the lane pattern probably will cause extra congestion in a zone that already slows traffic significantly. Only those drivers heading for Telegraph Road, Route 1 or Interstate 295 and National Harbor should use the Local lane.
When Metro fares go up July 1, so will fares on the Fairfax Connector buses. The changes will include an increase to the base bus fare to $1.60, using a SmarTrip card, and to $1.80 for those paying cash.
The fare for seniors and people with disabilities will rise to 80 cents with SmarTrip and 90 cents cash.
The fare for express Route 395 will increase to $5.35 with either SmarTrip or cash. Express routes 595 and 597 will cost $7.50 with either SmarTrip card or cash.
Tuesday is the deadline for submitting comments about the Virginia Transportation Department’s proposal to charge for E-ZPass accounts.
The department says a monthly account fee of about $1 per transponder will help cover the rising cost of operating the program, which will expand in Northern Virginia later this year with the opening of the 495 Express Lanes. A final decision on the fees is likely by the end of this month.
Comments can be e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or mailed to: Office of Communications — Third Floor/Annex Building, Virginia Department of Transportation, 1401 E. Broad St., Richmond, Va. 23219.
Drivers on the Fairfax County Parkway asked about new signs.
Why is the parkway now marked as “286” rather than “7100”?
The sign changes reflect a February decision by Virginia’s Commonwealth Transportation Board that upgraded the status of the Fairfax County, Prince William and Franconia-Springfield parkways to primary roads.
The designation is based on such factors as types of traffic and overall traffic volume, but this isn’t about roadway bragging rights. The designation makes the routes eligible for federal maintenance and improvement funds.
Primary routes get lower numbers, so the Fairfax County Parkway becomes Route 286, the Franconia-Springfield Parkway goes from 7900 to 289 and the Prince William Parkway from 3000 to 294.
The rider wondered if this was an early test of the new Rush Plus service, which will send some Yellow Line trains onto that northern part of the line.
That wasn’t the case. Metro repositions some trains for post-rush hour service. Rather than send an empty train down to Huntington, Metro labels the train Yellow, and it takes on riders.
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