Weekend Road and Rail: New traffic patterns on I-66 and express tolling begins

A new traffic configuration on Interstate 66 will cause stops in two locations; the Express Lanes free rides end this weekend; Fiesta DC will close streets in the District, and Metro’s shutdown and weekend maintenance continues. Here’s what to watch out for this weekend.

Roadwork

Virginia

The Transform 66 Outside the Beltway Project divides lanes between U.S. 50 and the Fairfax County Parkway for the next couple of weeks. The travel lanes on I-66 in both directions are shifted for construction work on the 66 Express Lanes in the center of the roadway. Jersey barriers are separating each way, with two lanes left and two lanes right of the barriers.

All lanes continue through in both directions. Westbound travelers must stay right at the divide to access the Va. 286/Fairfax County Parkway exits; those wishing to exit at Monument Drive or Stringfellow Road should stay in the two left lanes.

CLICK TO EXPAND: Map of the I-66 westbound lane divide between U.S. Route 50 and the Fairfax County Parkway. (Courtesy VDOT)

The same divide is happening eastbound, with all lanes continuing through at the split; those wishing to exit at U.S. 50 also need to stay to the right.

CLICK TO EXPAND: Map of the I-66 eastbound lane divide between the Fairfax County Parkway and U.S. Route 50. (Courtesy VDOT)

This new configuration will be in place in both directions for the next two weeks.

Tolling and HOV rules will begin Saturday, Sept. 24, on the 66 Express Lanes western section, which has been free to access for the past two weeks.

Solo drivers will need to pay a toll to access the 9-mile Express Lanes segment from Gainesville to Route 28 in Centreville; HOV-2+ can travel toll-free with an E-ZPass Flex. More information can be found at Ride66express.com.

Work is scheduled in other locations this weekend for the 66 Transformation Project:

Ramp from I-66 West to Route 234 Bypass (Prince William Parkway)

The ramp will be closed and detoured both nights for paving and striping at 10:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23 until 5 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 24, and then again at 10:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 23, until 5 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 24.

Ramps from Route 29 North and South (Gainesville) to I-66 East

The ramps will be closed and detoured both nights for paving 10 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23, through 4 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 24.

I-66 West from Route 29 (Centreville) to Groveton Road

Two lanes will be closed for paving and sign installation from 9 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23, through 5 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 24.

I-66 East from Route 234 Bypass to Route 29 (Centreville)

Two lanes will be closed for paving 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23, through 5 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 24.

Ramp from Route 28 North and South to I-66 East

The ramps will be closed and detoured both nights for paving and overhead bridge work 11 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23, through 4 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 24.

I-66 West from Route 286 to Route 28

Two lanes will be closed for overhead bridge work 9:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23, through 5 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 24.

I-66 East from Route 28 to Route 286

Three lanes will be closed nightly for overhead bridge work with periodic stoppages from 9 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23, through 5 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 24.

I-66 East from Route 608 (West Ox Road) to Route 50

Three lanes will be closed for overhead bridge work with periodic stoppages from 9 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23, through 5 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 24.

I-66 East from Waples Mill Road to Blake Lane

Friday, Sept. 23: 8:30 p.m. to 9 a.m.
Saturday, Sept. 24: 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 a.m.

Three lanes will be closed for milling and paving from 8:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23, through 9 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 24, and then again from 8:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 24, through 9:30 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 25.

I-66 West from Blake Lane to Waples Mill Road

Three lanes will be closed for milling and paving from 9 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23, through 9:30 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 24, and then again from 9 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 24, through 9:30 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 25.

I-66 East from Nutley Street to Gallows Road

Three lanes will be closed for milling and paving from 8:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23, through 9 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 24, and then again from 8:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 24, through 9:30 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 25.

I-66 West from Gallows Road to Nutley Street

Three lanes will be closed for milling and paving from 9 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23, through 9:30 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 24, and then again from 9 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 24, through 9:30 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 25.

I-66 East at I-495

Two lanes will be closed for a traffic shift from 10 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23, through 5 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 24.

Ramp from I-495 North to I-66 East

The ramp will be closed and detoured from midnight through 4 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 24.

Ramp from the 495 Express Lanes North to I-66 East

The ramp will be closed and detoured from midnight through 4 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 24.

All work is weather-dependent and subject to change. Be sure to call the WTOP Traffic Center, which is manned 24/7, with any updates or changes you may see at 866-304-WTOP (9867).

Maryland

The Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration started a $1.5 million safety and access improvement project at the intersection of Md. Route 228/Berry Road and Western Parkway, in the Waldorf area of Charles County.

Preliminary work began this week; the project is expected to be complete in December. Work is expected to be done nightly, 9 p.m. to 5 a.m., Sunday nights through Friday, and from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Mondays through Fridays, weather permitting.

Paving continues in the overnights on Interstate 95 over the next few weeks, weather permitting. It will include some triple lane closure nights.

This work at the I-95/I-695/Baltimore Beltway interchange in the Arbutus is all part of a new bridge rehabilitation project, which requires double- and triple-lane closures on I-95 at the interchange between 7 p.m. and 5 a.m.

Work begins Monday, Sept. 26, to replace the northbound U.S. Route 301/Blue Star Memorial Highway bridge over Chester River, south of the Md. Route 291 overpass, near Millington, in Queen Anne’s County.

The $12.1 million project, which includes demolition of the existing 67-year-old bridge and construction of a 235-foot bridge, is expected to be complete by fall 2023.

Crews will close the northbound U.S. 301 bridge to ensure a safe work zone, implanting a temporary crossover to shift northbound traffic across the median onto one lane of the southbound side. For more on this project, check the project page.

The final phase of the I-270/Md. Route 85/Buckeystown Pike Interchange Project also begins Monday, with crews shifting lanes onto the new configuration. The traffic shift will require single-lane closures on Route 85 overnight in both directions for two nights, Monday, Sept. 26, and Tuesday, Sept. 27. Work hours are from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. the following morning, weather permitting. For more, check the project page.

For all other continuing MDOT SHA projects, check the project portal.

For details on the continuing Purple Line construction between Prince George’s and Montgomery County, be sure to check the Purple Line Project website.

DC

There will be street closures and parking restrictions for the annual Fiesta DC Festival event, which will be held along Pennsylvania Avenue west of the Capitol building and along the National Mall as part of Hispanic Heritage Month.

The following streets will be closed to vehicle traffic from 12:01 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 24, through Sunday, Sept. 25, at 11:59 p.m.:

  • Pennsylvania Avenue from 3rd Street to 7th Street Northwest;
  • 4th Street from Pennsylvania Avenue to Madison Drive Northwest;
  • 6th Street from Constitution Avenue to C Street Northwest;
  • Constitution Avenue from 3rd Street to 7th Street Northwest;
  • G Place from 9th Street to 10th Street Northwest.

On Saturday, the D.C. Fire and EMS 150th Anniversary Fallen Firefighters Memorial Service will result in more parking restrictions and street closures. The following streets are scheduled to be closed from 6 a.m. through 12 p.m.:

  • 10th Street from F Street to H Street Northwest (local traffic will be allowed access to the parking garages in the block);
  • G Street from 9th Street to 11th Street Northwest;
  • G Place from 9th Street to 10th Street Northwest.

Be sure to check for any work associated with the I-295/D.C. 295 Corridor Project and the South Capitol Street Corridor Project. There are always various lane and ramp closures during off-peak times, including the weekends, between I-295 between Malcolm X Avenue and I-695, Firth Sterling, the Suitland Parkway as well as on South Capitol Street.

For any changes related to the Pave DC Project, check the interactive map and PaveDC tool.

Metro

Metro continues major construction on the Blue and Yellow lines, which closes six stations south of Reagan National Airport — Braddock Road, King Street-Old Town, Eisenhower Avenue, Huntington, Van Dorn Street and Franconia-Springfield — through Oct. 22. There is no Yellow Line service until May 2023, due to the rehabilitation of the Yellow Line tunnel and bridge over the Potomac River. Free shuttle buses are being provided.

Metrorail will open at 7 a.m. and close at 1 a.m. on Saturday and midnight Sunday, serving 85 stations. Trains will operate normal or near normal service frequencies on the Red, Blue, Orange and Silver lines, with schedule adjustments on the Green Line.

Weekend maintenance will see single tracking on the Red Line between Judiciary Sq. and Union Station and on the Green Line between College Park and Greenbelt.

On Saturday, Metro will be performing an emergency response drill, which will see Blue Line trains bypassing the Pentagon and Yellow Line trains replaced by buses between Huntington and Crystal City.

The full weekend schedule with service adjustments can be found on Metro’s website.

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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