Weekend Road and Rail: Cherry Blossom Festival nears end, paving season begins

There is ongoing work related to the DC-295/I-295 corridor and the South Capitol Street project this weekend, with many events in the waning days of the Cherry Blossom Festival, plus Metro’s increased service. Stops on Interstate 66 and the Capital Beltway related to the ongoing transformative work will slow down traffic as well.

Here’s what to know.



There have been a few steady projects reoccurring on weekends as of late, all as part of the ongoing Transform 66 Outside the Beltway Project. That schedule remains the same this weekend on projects along the Beltway and in Manassas.

The continuing work at the Beltway includes overnight lane closure and full stops, which are planned this weekend. Along with lane closures, there are always ramps closures at the Interstate 495/I-66 interchange to include the express lanes.

The I-495/I-66 interchange is being modified with new ramps and connections as part of the Transform 66 Outside the Beltway Project. The new interchange design will:

  • Add access to and from the existing I-495 Express Lanes and the new I-66 Express Lanes
  • Allow drivers to switch from express lanes to general purpose lanes — or vice versa — when changing roadways
  • Replace noise walls in several places at the interchange
  • Add noise walls along I-66 West near Idylwood Park

A few impactful continuing work locations are scheduled this weekend, weather permitting, according to the Virginia Department of Transportation.


I-495 North at I-66 on Friday, 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. Three lanes closed with periodic overnight stops for bridge work.

I-495 South at I-66 all week through Friday, 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. Three lanes closed with periodic overnight stops for bridge work.

I-66 East from Cedar Lane to I-495 on Friday 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. Three lanes closed with full stoppages planned periodically overnight for overhead bridge work.

I-66 West at I-495 on Friday, 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. Two lanes closed for overhead bridge demolition.

I-66 East from Gallows Road to I-495 on Friday and Saturday, 10:30 p.m. to 5 a.m. Three lanes closed with overnight stops of up to 20 minutes.

Planned work at the I-66/Nutley Street Interchange Project has been postponed.


I-66 East from Route 50 to Waples Mill Road on Friday and Saturday, 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. Three lanes closed for bridge beam installation with periodic full stops overnight.

I-66 East from Blake Lane to Vaden Drive on Friday 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Left lane closed for barrier work.


I-66 West from Route 28 to Route 29 on Friday, 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. Three lanes will be closed for overhead sign installation with periodic full stops overnight.


I-66 West at Cub Run beginning Friday at 9 p.m. continuously through 5 a.m. Monday. Left lane closed for bridge work with two lanes closed 10 p.m. to 8 a.m. Friday and Saturday nights.

I-66 West from Manassas Safety Rest Area to Route 29 Gainesville on Friday and Saturday, 6 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. The left Lane will be closed from 6 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. for daily paving with three lanes closed nightly between 10:30 p.m. to 6 a.m.

I-66 West/East between the Manassas Safety Rest Area to Route 234/Sudley Road on Friday and Saturday, 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. Three lanes will be closed nightly with periodic full stops overnight for bridge work.


I-66 East and West between Route 15 and Compton Road on Friday, Eastbound 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Westbound 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. One lane will be closed for lighting and utility work.

There is a chance for rain this weekend, and all work is generally weather-dependent. For the latest road and traffic conditions, see WTOP’s traffic page or listen to updates every 10 minutes online or on the air at 103.5 FM.


The Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration will perform tree trimming work this weekend to improve visibility on I-495/Capital Beltway near the Clara Barton Parkway.

According to MDOT, the plan for this weekend will include daily ramp closures from the Beltway’s Outer Loop to the Clara Barton Parkway (Exit 41) between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. with detours posted. The detour will have drivers continue south on the Outer Loop to VA-193/Georgetown Pike to ride the ramps back to the Inner Loop with the ability to access the Clara Barton Parkway.

Workers will be trimming trees and clearing other vegetation during this time, which could see early completion.

In St Mary’s County, a new resurfacing project began this week along MD-4/Patuxent Beach Road between MD-235 and the Gov. Thomas Johnson Bridge. There will be various lanes closed during off-peak hours, and weather-permitting, continue through the spring. During this time, motorists can expect various lanes closed, traffic shifts and flagging.

Beginning Sunday and continuing at off-peak times through May, crews will begin resurfacing MD-648/Baltimore Annapolis Boulevard in Glen Burnie. MDOT states there will be various lanes closed and flagging between I-97 and MD-3/Crain Highway.

For the many other Maryland roadway projects and changes, they can always be found here. And for the ever-changing Purple Line work between Prince George’s and Montgomery counties, check out the Purple Line Project’s website.


As we head into the final days of our National Cherry Blossom Festival, this weekend will see lots of related events, street closures and visitors.

On Saturday, the 2022 Cherry Blossom Parade will take place in the District. In conjunction with this event, there will be parking restrictions and street closures.

Saturday and Sunday, the 60th Annual Sakura Matsuri Japanese Street Festival will be taking place west of the U.S. Capitol as well. This includes parking restrictions and street closures at the following locations from Friday, April 8 at 7 p.m. to Sunday, April 10 at 11:59 p.m.:

  • Pennsylvania Avenue from 3rd Street to 7th Street NW
  • Constitution Avenue from 3rd Street to 7th Street NW
  • 4th Street from Madison Drive to Pennsylvania Avenue NW
  • 6th Street from C Street to Constitution Avenue NW

Downtown D.C.’s Pop of Spring block party has been closing the following roadways, which will continue through Monday, April 18 at 5 p.m.

  • F Street from 7th Street to 9th Street NW
  • 8th Street from E Street to F Street NW

There continues to be ongoing work for the Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge, South Capitol Street and the I-295/DC-295 corridor projects, which last into the weekend, weather-permitting.

This weekend will see temporary closures on southbound South Capitol Street between the Suitland Parkway and Firth Sterling Avenue nightly with detours posted. Northbound South Capitol Street is schedule to be closed, per DDOT, between Firth Sterling Avenue and Suitland Parkway daily between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m.

For more information and traffic advisories related to these ongoing projects, you can always check the website here.

CLICK MAP TO ENLARGE: Map of closure and detour of South Capitol Street. (Courtesy DDOT)


Metro will continue to run increased train service for cherry blossom season with no daytime track work scheduled.

Metrorail will open at 7 a.m., closing at 1 a.m. Saturday and midnight Sunday. Trains will serve all stations, operating the same frequencies as weekdays on all lines.

Due to escalator work on Saturday only, trains on the Blue, Orange and Silver lines will be bypassing the Capitol South Station from opening through no later than 7 p.m. with free shuttle service provided.

For a look at the full weekend plan for service adjustments and a detailed train schedule check here. For additional information and tips for cherry blossoms season, view Metro’s Travel to the Cherry Blossoms guide.

Mary DePompa

WTOP Traffic Reporter, Mary de Pompa has a great understanding of the D.C.-area gridlock, being a third-generation Washingtonian. If you see more than she says, call Mary on the WTOP Traffic Hotline at 202-895-5048 or email her at mdepompa@wtop.com.

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