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Delays on 50 in Md. this weekend

Saturday, 3 p.m.: The delays on U.S. 50 East appear to be heaviest starting at Exit 8 to Route 704 just beyond the Capital Beltway. Traffic in that area is at a crawl and the delays extend to Freeway Airport. The two right lanes are blocked. However, once you have passed that area traffic is mostly flowing freely, although there are single-lane closures where concrete is curing.

Original post: Motorists traveling on U.S. 50 eastbound should expect major delays this weekend as road crews finish repairs along a nine-mile stretch of the highway.

The Maryland Department of Transportation's State Highway Administration said the $402,000 project between the Anne Arundel County line and the Capital Beltway in Prince George's County will begin at 9 p.m. Friday and finish at 5 a.m. on Monday, if weather permits.

Roadwork on U.S. 50 westbound was finished Aug. 22.

Alternate routes include the Capital Beltway to MD 32 to I-97 or MD 450, which runs parallel to U.S. 50 through Prince George's County.

The work includes repairing nearly three dozen 12-foot by 12-foot concrete segments along eastbound U.S. 50. The repairs are needed because of the impact high temperatures and the high volume of traffic has had on the roadway this year. The combined factors have caused sections of the concrete to deteriorate, causing safety issues with the pavement, state officials said.

-- Ovetta Wiggins

By Michael Bolden  | August 28, 2010; 3:00 PM ET
Categories:  Congestion, Construction, Highways, Maryland  
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I'm confused. Is the entire road going to be shut down from Rte 3 to the Beltway westbound or are there just going to be some closed lanes? Can you be more explicit? I cannot seem to find anymore information/

Posted by: sigmagrrl | August 26, 2010 12:39 PM | Report abuse

Why was this stretch of the highway in Prince Georges County made of concrete, rather than asphalt? As a daily commuter on this road, the concrete pavement seems to have more problems and needs more maintenance than macadam. It's just something I've always wondered about.

Posted by: bdk64 | August 26, 2010 5:12 PM | Report abuse

I don't think I can provide any additional info, but I have to VENT--to MDOT!! We were coming back from Bethany on 8/22-we'd made good time all the way, including across the Bridge, when--there was a huge backup in front of us. WTOP said the backup was due to construction, so of course we had no choice but to crawl and crawl for about 1 1/2 hrs to go 9 miles. All traffic was squeezed into the left lane and --guess what? When we finally got to the "construction site" there were pleny of cones up, and warning signs, but the trucks were off to the side, and idle. There was NO work going on. We wasted alot of gas (not to mention time, we were supposed to be meeting friends in Arl)- so to MDOT I say thanks so much, you couldn't even be bothered to take down the cones so everybody could use all 3 lanes?? You suck! I'm glad I live in Va!

Posted by: arlingtonian6 | August 26, 2010 5:15 PM | Report abuse

I would concur with arlingtonian6. We returned from Bethany on 8/21/10 and found the same situation. Unfortunately, we continued on to Richmond taking 301 instead of 495, 95 route because of accidents on 495 & 95 according to WTOP. The trip from Bethany took us 8 hours including a stop for gas & lunch since we sat on Rt. 50 for so long going nowhere! It's normally a 4-5 hr drive. Thanks to MDOT for a nice(ha!) way to end a vacation.

Posted by: mpie | August 27, 2010 8:04 AM | Report abuse

What's up with the holier than thou VA resident complaining about MD. Ever try driving between DC and Richmond, no matter what time or day. The last couple of years I left MD early Saturday morning headed to Myrtle Beach and I faced stop and go traffic from DC to Kings Dominion. Also on my return the following Sunday afternoon it was the same. And what's up with State Troopers every 5 miles. Do you guys have any other revenue sources. I'll take MD traffic any day over VA.

Posted by: Chozn-won | August 27, 2010 9:58 AM | Report abuse

Well hmm-You are quite correct Chozn-Won- I try to avoid 95 like the plague, and there's good reason 4 that. It sucks big time. I grew up in Bethesda, so I have a soft spot for Md. I just like Arlington a little better But you have to admit, that mess on 50 last Sat was inexcusable!

Posted by: arlingtonian6 | August 27, 2010 5:40 PM | Report abuse

Parts of I-66, 495, Route 50 closed off over the weekend and two big rallies going on in DC.
Fire the idiot(s) who organized these road constructions on the same weekend.
Stop wasting valuable taxpayer money on roads that do not need repair.

Posted by: bluebellknoll | August 28, 2010 11:50 AM | Report abuse

mpie: Maybe Virginia concrete dries instantly, but the real stuff takes some time.

Posted by: rjm1 | August 28, 2010 7:05 PM | Report abuse

So I suppose all these people think they should shut the lanes down during rush hour?

Concrete needs 24 hours to dry, that means 24 hours of no driving on it. Only time for that is over the weekend, when traffic volumes are lighter than during rush hour. The roads are made from concrete because small repairs every few years are a lot cheaper than a full re-paving every 10 years. Properly maintained, the concrete will last 40 or 50 years.

I was on I-66 yesterday. There were plenty of signs, radio ads, newspaper articles, etc. that warned of the construction, major delays, with plenty of warning to take alternate routes. Everyone knew about this work far in advance, yet 66 was still jammed with so many people, and each and every one of them has no one but themselves to blame for not figuring out an appropriate alternate route. I did 28 to Dulles Toll Road back to I-66 in Falls Church, added maybe 10 minutes to my overall trip time. Beats the 45 minutes my friend spent sitting on I-66.

Posted by: thetan | August 29, 2010 2:24 PM | Report abuse

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