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14th St. Bridge lanes shifting

14th St Bridge Phase 5.jpg
Left-most lane of northbound span is scheduled to close in next phase. (DDOT)

The lane-closing program on the northbound 14th Street Bridge is about to reach its halfway point: This weekend, the work zone will shift again, blocking the far-left lane by the bridge's north side. The new pattern should be in place by the Monday morning rush, but drivers will have four lanes open during the peak periods.

Over the summer, the D.C. Department of Transportation bridge rehabilitation project has advanced quickly across the lanes. The current lane blockage, closing part of the second lane from the left, has been in place for just three weeks. This next lane closing, covering the entire left lane, is scheduled to last eight weeks. After that, workers will tackle segments of the bridge surface that are closest to the District and the lane closings will continue on that side.

Weekend work
Preparations for the next phase involve work this weekend. Between 10 p.m. Friday and 5 a.m. Monday, northbound drivers will find both the left center lane and the far left lane closed. Three lanes will be open to traffic.

Monday morning and beyond
When the morning rush begins, only the far left lane will be closed, and commuters will have four travel lanes.

The left exit lane, Exit 10C, to the Memorial Bridge will be open so that drivers can exit before they reach the work zone. After the exit, the lane will end and traffic will need to merge right.

Project managers recommend that drivers heading for the northbound span keep left if they will be exiting for the northbound George Washington Parkway on Exit 10C. If you're continuing to 14th Street, stay in the left and center lanes. Keep right if you're heading for the Southeast-Southwest Freeway.

This new lane closing should be one of the easiest to deal with, since there's no issue of a lane blockage where inbound drivers are used to merging. Drivers heading onto the bridge from the northbound George Washington Parkway will have the entire length of the bridge to move left for 14th Street.

By Robert Thomson  | September 9, 2010; 12:30 PM ET
Categories:  Commuting, Construction, District, Driving  | Tags:  14th Street Bridge, Dr. Gridlock  
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