New phase on 14th St. Bridge
Drivers on the northbound 14th Street Bridge should get set for a lane shift starting Monday, as the year-old rehabilitation project on the bridge enters a new phase. While the current phase has lasted way longer than we told you in May 2009, it has been relatively easy to deal with.
In the next phase, the work zone will move left, into the middle lanes. As a result, the lanes will be split around the work zone. Drivers still will have four lanes on the bridge at peak periods, but they will be routed around the construction barriers.
The key problem will lining up your lane for the 14th Street/I-395 split on the north side of the bridge. If you're driving north from Virginia on I-395, you will want to line up your lane extra early. If you're coming up the ramp from the George Washington Parkway, you'll want to look sharp and waste no time if you need to get left to reach 14th Street.
The work zone won't take away an entire lane for the full length of the bridge. But the partial blockage of the lane will make the merge distance much shorter before and after the blockage.
This isn't for commuters only. Keep this new lane shift in mind if you're driving from Virginia to Nationals Park, when you'll want to be in the lanes to the right across the bridge.
The District Department of Transportation is going to announce more details later Wednesday. Part of this should be explaining why the first phase lasted a full year when all the work on the road surface was originally scheduled to be done by now.
Setting up the work zone and re-striping the lanes will require overnight work this weekend. The two right lanes are scheduled to close from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights. All the lanes will be open by 5 a.m. Monday, but commuters will find them in different places than when they last saw them.
Carpool; take VRE, Metro or a commuter bus; adjust your work schedule; telecommute; or try another bridge. The nearby driving options are the Key, Roosevelt and Memorial bridges to the northwest of the 14th Street Bridge. But after that, it's down to the Wilson Bridge.
| June 9, 2010; 9:00 AM ET
Categories: Commuting, Congestion, Construction, District, Driving | Tags: 14th Street Bridge, Dr. Gridlock
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