Weekend Road and Rail: Bridge work on the Beltway, I-66 stoppages; Blue line shutdown

This weekend will continue to see work on Interstate 95/Interstate 495 Beltway in Prince George’s County with the bridge work over the Suitland Parkway. Also, overnight full stops on Interstate 66 continue, as does the bridge demolition work on Route 29 in Centreville. And Metro has a 2-week long shutdown planned for the Blue Line.

Here’s what to know if you’re traveling in the D.C. area this weekend.

Roadwork

Maryland

The Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration, MDOT SHA, has been and will continue to do work on the Capital Beltway I-95/I-495 between Allentown Road and MD-4 Pennsylvania Avenue for a bridge replacement over the Suitland Parkway.

There are closures on the shoulders permitted 24/7 through 2021 with intermittent single and multiple lane closures daily and overnights Sunday through Thursday.

Work on the bridge over Suitland Parkway removing structural steel. (Courtesy MDOT)

On Friday and Saturday nights the hours for single to multiple lane closures will be between the hours of 8 p.m. to 6 a.m.

There are double lane closures scheduled for the Outer Loop from Friday into Saturday overnights between 8 p.m. and 7 a.m. at the current traffic split where two lanes split to the left and two to the right as crews work in the center.

After the traffic shift is complete, all four lanes of traffic will be on the left so that the final stages of the bridge construction can begin in the right lanes.

This project is currently 75% completed with a projected full completion estimated by year’s end 2021, according to MDOT.

Recently, crews have been working on removal of the existing structure on the Inner Loop and are implementing a traffic shift for Outer Loop to start removal for the existing bridge on that side.

In a look ahead, MDOT will close 3 lanes of the Outer Loop over the Suitland Parkway for overnight work Monday and Tuesday between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.

Starting at 10 p.m., there will be one lane of travel available on the Outer Loop of I-95/I-495 between  Allentown AFB / Morningside, exit 9, and MD-4  Pennsylvania Avenue, exit 11.

Virginia

The ongoing Transform I-66 Project — which was scheduled to close I-66 for the Gallows Road bridge work this past week — is now scheduled to continue nightly through this weekend, weather permitting.

The overhead utility work on the new Gallows Road Bridge will have lane closures overnight both directions on I-66 approaching Gallows Road, between the Beltway and Vienna Metro, with stops of up to 20 minutes at a time.

Additionally, Gallows Road over I-66 is reduced to a single travel lane nightly with two-way traffic in the southbound lanes.

This is what drivers can expect overnights Friday and Saturday night:

Traffic detours to I-66 east, to Route 7, stay to the left, turning left at the traffic signal to follow signs to I-66 west. (Courtesy VDOT)
  • I-66 between Cedar Lane to Route 7 (Leesburg Pike) is reduce to one travel lane approaching Gallows Road
  • There will periodic stoppages of up to 20 minutes between midnight and 4 a.m.
  • All lanes should reopen by 5 a.m.
  • This work also closes the ramp from 495 Express Lanes Inner Loop to go westbound on I-66

In Centreville, work is also continuing at the Route 29/I-66 interchange for the remaining demolition of the old I-66 bridge span and piers. This work will require Route 29 Lee Highway to be reduced to a single lane in each direction between 9 p.m. Friday and 5 a.m. Monday.

There will be two-way travel in the northbound lanes starting around 9 p.m. Friday. This traffic pattern will switch around 9 p.m. Saturday to two-way traffic on the southbound side, which will stand for remainder of the weekend.

Route 29 under I-66 in Centreville will be reduced to two lane travel through the weekend with overnights a single lane, alternating, controlled by flaggers wither periodic full stops. (Courtesy VDOT)

There will only be single lane travel overnights with flaggers controlling the alternating vehicles and drivers to and from the ramps on I-66 will not be able to make left turns.

The ramp from Route 29 north to I-66 eastbound will be closed for the weekend as part of this ongoing bridge demolition project.

Also overnights, the ramp from Route 28 north to Walney/Braddock Road has been closed between midnight and 4 a.m. for barrier removal with traffic directed farther north to Westfields Boulevard. This work will continue nightly into Saturday morning.

In Vienna, during the overnight hours I-66 east near Nutley Street has had lane closures and stops of up to 20 minutes approaching Vaden Drive for the ongoing overhead bridge work at Vaden Drive. This work is scheduled to continue overnights into Saturday morning 5 a.m.

As always, not all work with these extensive projects and ever-changing configurations will be listed here. Be sure to stay tuned to WTOP news with traffic on the 8s. And, if you see something that’s not being reported, you can call the Traffic Center at 866-304-WTOP.

DC

This weekend, and off peak through the end of the year, the District Department of Transportation (DDOT) has weekend work planned along I-295, South Capitol Street Project and the Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge as the Improving 295 DC Project where there continues to be lanes, ramps and shoulders closed, weather permitting.

Howard Road detour map. (Courtesy DDOT)

This work often has full closures of the Suitland Parkway between Firth Sterling Avenue, SE and South Capitol Street, SE. Also, Howard Road, SE closures between Firth Sterling Avenue, SE to the WMATA Access closed nightly from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m.

As always, all work is weather dependent and that includes the paving locations which are scheduled again this week. DDOT said it is committed to improving and restoring roadways through pavement restoration and residents should expect paving activities at the following locations:

  • 12th Street NW, between Constitution Avenue and Pennsylvania Avenue
  • 23rd Street NW, between Constitution Avenue and H Street
  • Pennsylvania Avenue NW, between 3rd Street and 15th Street
  • Kansas Avenue NW, between Sherman Circle and Kennedy Street
  • 7th Street NW, between Emerson Street and Farragut Street
  • 23rd Place NE, between E Street and Benning Road
  • Erie Street SE, between Naylor Road E and 29th Street
  • 38th Street SE, between Alabama Avenue and Suitland Road

Metro

This weekend, and continuing through Sunday, Jan. 3, Metro will close two Blue Line stations — Franconia-Springfield and Van Dorn St for safety improvements. The two-week station closures will allow for work round-the-clock to upgrade the signal system that is essential to providing safe, reliable service for customers, according to Metro.

There will be Blue Line service continuing between Huntington and Largo and free shuttles will be provided. Riders could use a shuttle to connect to the Yellow and Blue lines at Eisenhower Ave or express shuttles directly to the Pentagon.

There is normal preventive maintenance scheduled for the Red Line with late-night single tracking between Friendship Heights and Medical Center.

This weekend Metro will be on a normal weekend schedule opening at 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Saturday and 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Sunday servicing 89 of the 91 stations with normal service on the Orange, Silver, Yellow and Green lines.

Weekend service summary:

  • Red Line — trains run every 12-20 minutes.
  • Trains single track after 10 p.m. between Friendship Heights and Medical Center.
  • Blue Line — trains every 18 to 20 minutes between Huntington and Largo Town Center only.
  • Franconia-Springfield and Van Dorn St Stations closed
  • Free buses replace trains between Franconia-Springfield, Van Dorn St and Eisenhower Ave.
  • Free buses available between Franconia-Springfield and the Pentagon.
  • Orange, Silver, Yellow and Green Line — trains every 15-20 minutes.

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