Next phase at 14th St. Bridge
The work zone on the northbound 14th Street Bridge is about to shift again. On Monday, if the plan goes according to schedule, commuters will find the left-center lane blocked as they head for either 14th Street or the Southeast-Southwest Freeway.
That means the work zone will have moved one lane to the left. After a year-long phase in which the far right lane was the only one blocked off, the bridge rehabilitation project has moved out fairly rapidly across the span. The current work zone was set up just last month.
While the concrete barriers will be in a different spot next week, the task for drivers remains basically the same. They must navigate around this construction island to line up for either 14th Street or the freeway.
However, I think this may be slightly more challenging than the current phase. Right now, two lanes are open to the left and two lanes are open to the right, a good balance. In the new configuration, there will be one lane to the left and three to the right of the work zone. If everyone heading for 14th Street gets into the left lane, rush hour traffic could be more than usually stalled. Some drivers heading for 14th Street may want to aim for the lane just to the right of the new work zone, than shift left for 14th Street once they get past the construction barriers. (Does that make sense to you regulars on the bridge? What's your advice?)
The new configuration is scheduled to be in place by 5 a.m. Monday. But the set-up for this will start at 10 p.m. Friday. So over the weekend, drivers may find three lanes open, rather than the normal four. All four will be available in time for Monday morning's rush.
Tips for traffic
-- Drivers heading for the bridge from northbound Interstate 395 can use the left exit lane (Exit 10C) as a through lane onto the bridge. They will not be required to exit and can continue through onto the bridge.
-- When the work zone ends, there's about an eighth of a mile left to make lane changes before the highway divides.
-- There's always a lot of traffic movement across the bridge, but pay particular mind to drivers merging from the northbound George Washington Parkway on the right who are going to have limited space to get left if they're destination is 14th Street.
-- Drivers heading for the freeway (I-395 N) are in the best spot. They will have three lanes to work with as they cross the bridge.
| August 19, 2010; 10:00 AM ET
Categories: Commuting, Construction, District, Driving | Tags: 14th Street Bridge, Dr. Gridlock
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