Weekend Road and Rail: DC event-related closures, I-66 lane work

For yet another weekend, a convergence of events in downtown D.C. — including a music festival and a demonstration — will close some major roadways. Drivers along Interstate 66 in Northern Virginia and Interstate 270 in Maryland’s Montgomery County can expect slow travel due to late night and overnight roadwork too.

Here’s what to be aware of.

Roadwork

DC

Drivers in and around the District should plan for heavy volume and widespread road closures due to a number of events happening downtown this weekend. Seek alternative methods of travel, such as public transit, if possible.

Pharrell’s Something in the Water music festival is expected to draw thousands of people to Independence Avenue from Friday through Sunday. Road closures were implemented near the south side of the National Mall earlier this week for event prep, and won’t reopen fully until Tuesday. Some roads are posted with “emergency no parking” or “restricted to local traffic only” signs.

For a full list of road closures related to SITW, see here, or refer to the map below. If you’re planning to attend, check out WTOP’s festival FAQ.

CLICK MAP TO ENLARGE: Downtown D.C. road closures and parking restrictions related to the Something in the Water festival. (Courtesy D.C. police)

The Poor People’s Campaign Moral March on Washington will take place Saturday morning on the east half of the National Mall, near the U.S. Capitol.

Thousands are expected to attend from across the U.S. seeking to “challenge the evils of systemic racism, poverty, the war economy, ecological devastation and the nation’s distorted moral narrative of religious nationalism,” according to the event’s website.

Several stretches of Pennsylvania and Constitution avenues will be closed from Friday through Sunday, in addition to those already shut down due to the nearby SITW festival. A full list of closures related to the Poor People’s Campaign event can be found here.

Weather-permitting, the District Department of Transportation will continue concrete repairs on South Capitol Street SW, near the M Street overpass, which began last weekend. Work is expected to temporarily close the roadway Saturday between 7 a.m. and 2 p.m. Traffic will be detoured around the work zone, and some nearby curbside parking may be restricted.

The Washington Nationals have several at-home games planned through Sunday. Anticipate the possibility of a perfect storm of visitors and congestion to and from the District during the late morning and afternoon hours.

Virginia

There will continue to be many lane and ramp closures through this weekend associated with the Transform 66 Outside the Beltway Project and the expansion of the Express Lanes between the Capital Beltway and Gainesville. The most impactful closures are generally during overnight hours, but there are many long-term ramp and lane configurations that remain in place.

On eastbound I-66 between U.S. 29 in Gainesville and U.S. 29 in Centreville, the left lane will remain closed through this weekend for final paving of the I-66 Express Lanes. Additional lanes will be closed during the overnight hours. Drivers should factor in additional time for traffic delays and consider adjusting plans during peak volume.

Travel lanes on I-66 East between Groveton Road and Route 234 Business (Sudley Road) in Manassas will be shifted into a split roadway configuration during the early morning hours on or about Saturday, June 18. When this traffic change is implemented, the two right travel lanes will be separated from the two left travel lanes by a barrier-enclosed construction area. All drivers wanting to exit to Route 234 Business must stay right at the split. This traffic pattern will remain in place through fall 2022.

Here is a look at a few other impactful closures, according to the Virginia Department of Transportation, planned in the D.C. region this weekend, but subject to postponement in the event of inclement weather.

I-66 East from University Boulevard to U.S. 29/Centreville: Friday, June 17 through 5 a.m. Monday, June 20. The left lane will be closed between 8 p.m. and 5 a.m. each night for paving of the future I-66 Express Lanes.

I-66 East from Route 28 to Stringfellow Road: Friday, June 17 from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. The interstate will be reduced to a single travel lane nightly for overhead bridge work. Traffic will be directed into a single travel lane and diverted around the work zone.

I-66 West at Route 28: Friday, June 17 from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. Three lanes will close nightly for overhead bridge work.

Northbound I-495 Express Lanes at I-66: Friday, June 17 to Saturday, June 18 from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. nightly. Northbound express lanes will be closed approaching I-66 for bridge work. Watch for directions on overhead message boards.

Maryland

The Maryland Department of Transportation began a new project Wednesday to resurface a mile of roadway on southbound I-270 between Md. 121/Clarksburg Road and Md. 109/Old Hundred Road.

The project seeks to improve traffic flow with an extended acceleration lane. Drivers can expect single and multiple-lane closures 7 p.m. until 4 a.m. on Sunday evenings through Friday mornings until mid-July.

In Frederick County, U.S. 15 will see a single lane closed for highway patching on Sunday night through Friday morning, between Basford Road and the bridge over the Potomac River near the Maryland-Virginia state line.

Paving on the Capital Beltway near the Suitland Parkway is scheduled to continue into the summer. MDOT will have work on both loops between Md. 4/Pennsylvania Avenue and Forestville Road, working overnights 7 p.m. to 5 a.m. on Sundays through Fridays with multiple lane closures possible.

For the ever-changing Purple Line work between Prince George’s and Montgomery counties, check out the Purple Line Project website for the latest.

Metro

Closures related to Metrorail’s Summer Platform Improvement Project will continue this weekend with five stations closed on the Orange Line through Labor Day to make way for work crews: New Carrollton, Landover, Cheverly, Deanwood and Minnesota Avenue. Free shuttle bus service is available.

If you’re riding Metro to the Something in the Water festival, Metro recommends choosing a destination on your line of origin so you don’t need to transfer. L’Enfant Plaza, Gallery Place-Chinatown and Smithsonian are all within walking distance of the festival area.

Metro will run from 7 a.m. to 1 a.m. on Saturday, and from 7 a.m. to midnight on Sunday. Trains arrive every 15 minutes on the Red, Yellow and Green lines, and every 20 minutes on the Blue, Orange and Silver lines.

Lucky riders on the Green and Yellow lines might catch a 7000-series train, eight of which were reintroduced to service on Thursday for the first time in months. Metro remains on schedule for a full restoration of the 7000-series fleet by late summer, but expects to boost service on the Blue, Orange and Silver lines starting next month.

Alejandro Alvarez

Alejandro Alvarez joined WTOP as a digital reporter and editor in June 2018. He is a writer and photojournalist focusing on politics, political activism and national affairs, with recent multimedia contributions to Reuters, MSNBC and PBS.

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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