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The weekend and beyond

By Robert Thomson

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

No big rallies or runs this weekend, but transit riders should be aware of the maintenance disruptions on three of Metro's rail lines. The Capitals and Wizards will be playing at Verizon Center, and the Greater Washington Heart Walk is scheduled for Saturday at Nationals Park. Travelers should find the weekend weather crisp and mostly clear. Clocks fall back an hour on Sunday morning.

Metro weekend delays
Orange/Blue Line project: The Orange Line's Minnesota Avenue, Deanwood, Cheverly, Landover and New Carrollton stations will be closed from 10 p.m. Friday through 5 a.m. Monday. There will be no rail service in that zone. At the same time, no Blue Line trains will operate between Stadium-Armory and Benning Road. The Benning Road Station will remain open. Service should return to normal when the system reopens, although trains may operate at reduced speeds in portions of the work zone.

Riders will need to add to their normal trip time if they're planning to use Metro's shuttle buses, linking the disrupted portions of the lines. Add 20 minutes between Benning Road and Stadium-Armory. Add a half-hour to a trip between New Carrollton and Stadium-Armory when using Metro's express shuttle. Add up to 40 minutes for a trip between New Carrollton and Stadium-Armory on the local shuttle.

It takes several shuttle buses to hold as many people as a single rail car. Also, it takes time to board and let passengers on and off the buses, and then there's the reality of stop-and-go traffic. It might be easier to drive to a different Metro station and board take the train from there.

Blue/Yellow lines: Riders between Braddock Road and Pentagon City should add at least half an hour to their travel time from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Metro will be repairing the rail bridge outside the Reagan National Airport Station.

During those hours, Yellow Line trains will operate about every half hour between Huntington and Mount Vernon Square. After 6 p.m. both days, the Yellow Line trains will operate about every 15 to 20 minutes between Huntington and Fort Totten. Blue Line trains will operate every half hour between Franconia-Springfield and Stadium-Armory and between Largo Town Center and Benning Road. After 6 p.m., they will operate about every 15 to 20 minutes between Franconia-Springfield and Stadium-Armory and between Largo Town Center and Benning Road.

Time change
We fall back at 2 o'clock Sunday morning. Metro will operate on its normal weekend schedule until 3 a.m. Eastern Standard Time. (This is hard to explain in a way that everyone gets. When Daylight Saving Time ends at 2 a.m., and the clocks fall back to 1 a.m., Metro's clock also falls back.)

GW Parkway paving
The third of five weekends of milling and paving along the George Washington Parkway is scheduled to start at 7 p.m. Friday. Watch for lane closings between the Roosevelt Bridge and the Route 123 interchange. One lane in each direction will be open at all times. This weekend's work is scheduled to be done by 7 p.m. Sunday.

Roosevelt Bridge repairs
The District Department of Transportation will do some emergency repairs on the Theodore Roosevelt Bridge on Saturday from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. Workers will replace 12 damaged concrete lane divide barriers. This is the mobile barrier that is shifted daily to provide an additional travel lane during rush hours.

To clear a work zone Saturday, DDOT will close the outbound left lane.

Conn. Ave. median
The District is going to build a raised center median on Connecticut Avenue NW between K and L Streets, as a safety improvement. Construction is scheduled to start this coming week. The work, which may be done any days but Saturdays, should be done by mid-December.

Temporary lane closings and parking restrictions will be necessary, but two traffic lanes will be open at all times, as will the sidewalks. The bus stops will stay the same.

The District Department of Transportation says the median construction is part of a larger project aimed at transforming downtown Connecticut Avenue into a more accessible place by focusing on safety and streetscape beautification.

Ohio Drive
The planned completion of the Ohio Drive reconstruction near the Lincoln Memorial has been pushed back to Nov. 15. But drivers should now find two lanes open in each direction. The ramps to and from Lincoln Memorial Circle have been reopened.

The final placement of asphalt and road markings is scheduled for the weekend of Nov. 12- 15, weather permitting.

Beltway/Telegraph Road
The interchange would be a good place to avoid this weekend, because of construction related to the Wilson Bridge project. These are some highlights of the closings schedule.

Friday, 9 p.m., to Saturday 10 a.m.: The on-ramp from southbound Telegraph Road to the Capital Beltway Inner Loop (I-95/495 South) will be closed.

Friday, 9 p.m., to Sunday, 5 a.m.:
-- The exit ramp from the Capital Beltway Inner Loop (I-95/495 South) to southbound Telegraph Road will be closed for bridge construction over Telegraph Road.
-- The on-ramp from northbound Telegraph Road to the Capital Beltway Inner Loop (I-95/495 South) will be closed for bridge construction over Telegraph Road.

Friday, 9 p.m. to Saturday, 6 a.m.: Telegraph Road Northbound between Huntington Avenue and the Eisenhower Avenue overpass will be closed completely for bridge construction over Telegraph Road.

Saturday, 6 a.m. to 1 p.m.: Telegraph Road North and South will be narrowed to one lane in each direction from Duke Street to Mill Road for construction work on the Telegraph Road bridge over the railroad tracks.

Saturday, 11 p.m., to Sunday, 6 a.m.: Telegraph Road North and South will be closed completely between Duke Street and Huntington Avenue for construction work on the Telegraph Road bridge over the railroad tracks.

Beltway HOT lanes
Beginning at 5 a.m. Monday, the Capital Beltway outer loop ramp (Exit 47A) leading to westbound Leesburg Pike (Route 7) will be moved up 400 feet to clear room for construction of the new exit ramps for the High Occupancy Toll lanes project.

Drivers heading to westbound Route 7 will need to exit sooner. The new merge lane will be reconfigured for westbound traffic only. Exit 47B, the one for eastbound Route 7, will not be affected. Those drivers will continue using the old exit ramp lane.

I-95 lane open
The fourth lane on southbound Interstate 95 is open from the Fairfax County Parkway to Route 1, although there will still be overnight lane closings in that area for milling and paving. Here's the schedule:
-- I-95 south from Exit 166 (Route 7100) to Exit 161 (Route 1): Two lanes closed Sunday through Friday nights, 9 p.m. to 5 a.m., for milling, paving and striping.
-- I-95 north between Exit 160 (Route 123) and one mile south of Exit 166: Right lane closed Monday through Thursday from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. for bridge work.
-- I-95 south between Exits 166 and 160: Right lane closed Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. for guardrail installation, paving, and barrier movement.
-- I-95 reversible (HOV) lanes from Exits 166 to 160: Single lane closed Monday through Thursday from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. for road work.

Reversible lane schedule
The Virginia Department of Transportation has made these changes to the scheduled for the I-95/395 reversible lanes:

Southbound lanes open until midnight: The reversible lanes will remain open to all southbound traffic until midnight Mondays through Thursdays. This pattern, put in place in July to ease delays from summer traffic and construction, is now permanent. VDOT says its traffic engineers determined that this schedule will continue to benefit motorists.
The reversible lanes will re-open for northbound traffic at 2 a.m.

Northbound lanes open until 11 a.m: The reversible lanes will close at 11 a.m., instead of 10 a.m., Mondays through Fridays and will re-open to southbound traffic at 1 p.m., rather than noon. The schedule had been altered over the summer, because of the I-95 widening project.

There is no change to the HOV-3 schedule, which remains in effect from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. and from 3:30 p.m. to 6 p.m., Mondays through Fridays.

Prince William signals
The Virginia Department of Transportation says motorists should notice smoother traffic flow on several major roads in eastern Prince William County where 75 signals have been adjusted to minimize delays. The signal network is updated every two years to keep pace with changing traffic patterns and demand.

The 75 signals are located along Prince William Parkway, Minnieville Road, Dale Boulevard and Smoketown Road which provide access to I-95, Potomac Mills and other retail, residential and office developments. Signals have four timing plans for weekdays -- morning rush, midday, afternoon rush and off-peak -- and four for weekends. Signal times for Saturdays are different than those on Sundays.

In addition to the traffic signals, engineers also rechecked and updated pedestrian timings at each intersection, VDOT says.

By Robert Thomson  | November 5, 2010; 7:30 PM ET
Categories:  Advisories, Construction, Driving, Metro, Weekend Work  | Tags:  Dr. Gridlock, The weekend and beyond  
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