Weekend Road and Rail: Memorial Day events, Beltway shifts and Metro shutdown

Rolling into a long holiday weekend, most road work is suspended except for a few long-term work zones. This Memorial Day weekend will be the same. There will be a few events to take note of, and changes on Metrorail.

Here’s what to expect this weekend.

D.C.

This Memorial Day weekend will mark the return of Rolling to Remember, an event bringing thousands of motorcycles to the D.C. area raising awareness for our prisoners of war. There will be events beginning Friday, with a bike blessing ceremony at the Washington National Cathedral and a candlelight vigil at the National Vietnam War Memorial that evening.

On Saturday at RFK Stadium, there will be a rally with Jon Stewart and some other special guests. On Sunday, thousands of motorcycle riders and supporters will head downtown at noon to lap the National Mall on closed streets that will pass the war memorials, White House and Capitol Hill before turning onto 14th Street to leave the District.

A full list of road closures, events and times can be found here.

Rolling to Remember 2022 route. (Courtesy Rolling to Remember)

On Monday, Constitution Avenue NW will be closed between 7th and 17th streets for the return of the annual Memorial Day Parade, with street closures between 1 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. The parade  itself kicks off at 2 p.m. For more on the event, check their website.

There are also notable Memorial Day parades and observances, with street closures planned at the following locations.

Rockville: Memorial Day Ceremony and Parade, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Georgetown Pike: Great Falls Memorial Day Ceremony, 3 p.m.

Great Falls Street: Memorial Day Festival and Parade, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Upcoming roadwork

With most roadwork suspended, there is a new travel pattern expected on the Beltway in Virginia as early as May 31. This new pattern will be needed to accommodate the 495 NEXT construction project.

According to the Virginia Department of Transportation, the Green Arrow/Red X left-shoulder lane on northbound I-495 of the Capital Beltway in Virginia, which is open during morning and afternoon peak travel periods from where the current I-495 Express Lanes end near the Dulles Access Road to the George Washington Memorial Parkway, will close permanently.

The closure of this shoulder lane is necessary to make space in the center of the Beltway for construction of new bridges that will span the wider, future Beltway at Old Dominion Drive, Georgetown Pike and Live Oak Drive.

This work is part of the I-495 Express Lanes Northern Extension project to extend the existing 495 Express Lanes from the Dulles Corridor interchange to the George Washington Memorial Parkway near the American Legion Bridge.

In addition to the left-shoulder lane closing, other changes include:

  • Closing the southbound center shoulder
  • Re-striping and realigning the general-purpose lanes to create additional space in the center of I-495
  • Placing temporary barriers to secure the center work zone for the safety of drivers and workers
Map of the location of planned closures. (Courtesy VDOT)

Periodic lane closures are required to complete this work, but will be scheduled during nonpeak travel hours. Travelers approaching the construction area should anticipate delays and plan accordingly.

Metro

This Memorial Day holiday weekend, Metro will begin the final phase of its Platform Improvement Project, closing five stations on the Orange Line between Stadium-Armory and New Carrollton through Labor Day, with additional weekend closures throughout the summer on the Blue Line between Stadium-Armory and Benning Road for aerial structure repairs.

Metro will operate on a normal weekend schedule, opening at 7 a.m., closing at 1 a.m. Saturday, and midnight Sunday and Monday. Trains will serve 86 of 91 stations with only normal service on the Red Line, and scheduled track work on all other lines.

For Memorial Day on Monday, trains will operate on a Sunday schedule providing normal service on 5 of 6 lines, with service adjustments on the Orange Line.

Metro continues work to improve service amid the 7000-series railcar investigation with a focus on root cause analysis. For the latest information view the Metrorail 7000-series Return to Service Update.

The full weekend schedule with service adjustments can be found here.

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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