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The weekend and beyond

Construction updates | D.C. area travel tips | Going Out Guide

Whether they're heading for Fan Appreciation Day at Redskins Park or the Legg Mason Tennis Classic in Rock Creek Park or taking a more ambitious trip to the Eastern Shore, travelers should find the weekend sunny and somewhat less humid in the D.C. area, before we return to high heat and humidity next week.

Here's my weekly look at some of the transit and roadway conditions that may slow your trips.

Metrorail weekend delays
This weekend, the repair program on the Red Line moves into the middle of D.C., creating some extra complications for travelers, including those who might be on their way to the final games at the Legg Mason tennis tournament in Rock Creek Park. The transit authority is advising riders to add at least 40 minutes to their normal travel time and is offering some Metrobus alternatives.

Downtown disruption
Metro plans to upgrade a rail switch outside Farragut North and install new track. That's going to require trains to share a track between Dupont Circle and Judiciary Square from 10 p.m. Friday through the midnight closing on Sunday.

On Saturday and Sunday between 9:30 a.m. and 9:30 p.m., trains will leave the ends of the Red Line at Shady Grove and Glenmont about every 10 minutes. Every other train leaving Shady Grove will terminate at Dupont Circle and head back toward Shady Grove. Every other train leaving Glenmont will terminate at Union Station and head back to Glenmont. At all other times this weekend, trains will leave Shady Grove and Glenmont about every 20 minutes.

Night owls take note: The last trains from Glenmont will leave 11 minutes earlier than usual this weekend. They will depart Glenmont at 2:26 a.m. Friday and Saturday, and at 11:26 p.m. Sunday.

All the Red Line trains will be eight cars long this weekend.

See details on extra buses in previous posting.

Green Line: There is also weekend track work on the Green Line, but this is not nearly as complicated, and the Nationals are on the road. Still, riders between Southern Avenue and Naylor Road should add at least 20 minutes to their travel time from 10 p.m. Friday through the midnight closing Sunday. Workers will weld new rail in that area so trains will share a single track around them.

Legg Mason tennis tournament
The tournament is wrapping up this weekend at the FitzGerald tennis center at 16th Street NW, just north of Colorado Avenue. Drivers and bus riders should expect extra traffic in the area during the afternoons and evenings.

Parking: Only local traffic is allowed on the neighborhood streets, which will be barricaded. Paid parking is available on the grass lot (Lot B) near the tennis stadium, but it's very limited and is not used if rain is in the forecast. (Keep track of the forecast with the Capital Weather Gang.) Updates are available online and through the tournament hot line, 202-721-9500.

Free shuttles: They run daily between the Red Line's Van Ness Metrorail station and the FitzGerald tennis stadium. There's free parking near the shuttle at the Van Ness Center Garage, at Windom Place NW and Connecticut Avenue. Show your tennis ticket at the garage for the free parking. At the tennis center, the shuttles stop outside the main gate.

The shuttles start 90 minutes before the matches through Friday. On Saturday and Sunday, they start two hours before the matches.

Metrobus detour
Route 64 will detour from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, to get around the "Lil' Benny Alley Dedication." The detour will take the buses from 11th Street NW, onto Vermont Avenue between T and U streets.

Bethesda escalator
The other of the two escalators that connect the platform and mezzanine at Bethesda Metrorail station has been taken out of service for a long-term repair, which is scheduled to be finished Oct. 25. Meanwhile, the other escalator is turned off to serve as a two-way staircase. Riders are familiar with this drill. Repairs on the first of the two escalators started in the spring and were completed last week.

Beltway/Route 123
Two Beltway ramps in Tysons Corner are scheduled to close overnight Friday for work on the Dulles Metrorail project.

The ramps from the outer loop (I-495 North) to southbound Route 123 and the ramp from northbound Route 123 to the outer loop will close from 10:30 p.m. Friday to 7 a.m. Saturday. This prepares the area for construction of one of the piers that will support the Metrorail tracks.

Beltway/Telegraph Road
Watch for ramp and lane closings this weekend and next week on the Capital Beltway and on Telegraph Road as part of the Wilson Bridge construction project.

The realignment for the ramp from Telegraph Road South to the outer loop (I-95/495 North) is scheduled for this weekend. Protective shielding will continue to be installed below the bridge over the CSX/Metro train tracks and Mill Road throughout the week from midnight to 4 a.m.

These are the details for the weekend work.

From 9 p.m. Friday, Aug. 6, to about 5 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 7:
-- Outer Loop (I-95/495 North) ramp from Telegraph Road South will be closed. Drivers should take Telegraph Road South to Huntington Avenue to Route 1 North and turn left to the I-95/495 North ramp.
-- Telegraph Road South will be narrowed to one lane between Mill Road and Huntington Avenue.

VRE back Monday
Normal service on the Fredericksburg Line is scheduled to resume Monday morning. The train service was canceled Friday because of a CSX train derailment.

Fairfax Connector changes
The Fairfax County Department of Transportation is considering changes to Fairfax Connector Routes 151 and 152 to improve their on-time performance. The department also is proposing a new Route 159 between Huntington Station and the Engleside neighborhood during peak periods.

There's a public meeting on the plans Aug. 14, from noon to 2 p.m. at the South County Center, 8350 Richmond Highway, Alexandria.

I-95 widening
While adding a fourth lane in each direction south of Washington should ease congestion, vacationers on long-distance trips should be wary of this work.

At night, it's between 9:30 p.m. and 5 a.m.
-- I-95 South from Lorton Road to Richmond Highway (Route 1) flyover ramp: Two left lanes closed Monday and Tuesday nights for overhead sign removal and erection of a new sign. Expect full closings of up to half an hour after midnight.
-- I-95 HOV lanes from the Fairfax County Parkway (Route 7100) to Gordon Boulevard (Route 123): Road closed Monday and Tuesday night for removal of an overhead sign and erection of a new one.

Daytime work
-- I-95 North from Gordon Boulevard to one mile south of the Fairfax County Parkway: Single lane closed Monday through Thursday from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
-- I-95 South from the Fairfax County Parkway to Gordon Boulevard: Right lane closed Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

GW Parkway project
The National Park Service now has road work projects underway across the region. Here's a new one starting Monday on the George Washington Parkway.

Traffic delays are likely beginning Monday, when reconstruction is scheduled to start on the access interchange at the Daingerfield Island Marina and the entrance road leading to the Indigo Landing restaurant. The area is about a half mile south of Reagan National Airport.

Parkway drivers heading south to Daingerfield Island will not be able to turn left at the interchange. They should continue south and turn right at the exit to Slater's Lane and then turn left to the northbound parkway to Daingerfield Island.

Lane closings on both sides of the parkway are scheduled for 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., but at least one lane in each direction will be open at all times.

Anacostia streetcar
Installation of the streetcar tracks has led to temporary turn restrictions and detours at the intersection of South Capitol Street and First Sterling Avenue SE in Anacostia.

Left turns from southbound South Capitol Street to Firth Sterling Avenue and right turns from Firth Sterling to northbound South Capitol are prohibited until Aug. 28.

In addition, the intersection will be closed to northbound traffic from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Aug. 14, 16, 17 and 18. Northbound traffic on South Capitol Street will have to turn right on Firth Sterling and then left on Suitland Parkway to return to South Capitol. Traffic control officers will be at the intersection, but delays are likely.

Beltway/Route 29
The HOT lanes project is shifting the two northbound lanes of Route 29 (Lee Highway) to a new four-lane bridge over the Beltway. This could start as early as Sunday. The new traffic pattern will include a shared left-turn and through lane for drivers heading north on Route 29 to Shreve Road.

Southbound Route 29 traffic will remain on the old bridge until about Aug. 22, before shifting to two temporary southbound lanes on the new northbound bridge. At that point, night work will begin to demolish the old southbound bridge. Drivers should expect weeknight and weekend lane closings and detours along Route 29 and the Beltway starting around 9:30 p.m. most nights.

The demolition will continue through the fall, followed by construction of a new southbound bridge, which is scheduled to open by fall 2011.

By Robert Thomson  | August 6, 2010; 10:00 AM ET
Categories:  Advisories, Driving, Events, Metro, Transit, Weekend Work  | Tags:  Dr. Gridlock, The weekend and beyond  
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Any word from Metro on whether they'll be working on fixing the fare gate problems @ Foggy Bottom? The backups and hassle have been unbelievable in the past week.

Posted by: cbdc7 | August 6, 2010 3:32 PM | Report abuse

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