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The weekend and beyond

By Robert Thomson

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

The weekend weather looks gorgeous, but despite high temperatures approaching 70 degrees, some travelers may be heading for the season's first weekend of skating at the Sculpture Garden Ice Rink on the National Mall. Others with a more sedentary view of athletics may just take in the Wizards on Friday night or the Capitals on Sunday evening at Verizon Center.

Meanwhile, the Calder Quartet will be at the Sixth and I Historic Synagogue, and for those preparing for holiday gift-giving, the Museum Shop Around is at Strathmore. Here's my weekly review of the traffic and transit issues you may need to deal with.

Metro weekend delays
There's no one big track work project scheduled, but travel on all the rail lines will be disrupted at some point this weekend. Several of the projects, such as the one at the Rockville platform, will look familiar because they involve long-term rehabilitation efforts.

Red Line: Riders between Shady Grove and Twinbrook should add at least half an hour to their travel time from 8 p.m. Friday through the midnight closing on Sunday. Trains are sharing the same track around a work zone where Metro is repairing the Rockville platform.

Riders between New York Avenue and Rhode Island Avenue should add at least 20 minutes to their travel time from 10 p.m. Friday through the Sunday closing. Workers are repairing a portion of the elevated tracks outside the Rhode Island Avenue Station.

On Saturday and Sunday, Red Line trains are scheduled to leave about every 15 minutes from the ends of the line at Shady Grove and Glenmont. Trains will arrive at the closer-in stations, between Grosvenor and New York Avenue, about every eight to nine minutes.

Orange Line: Riders between Vienna and West Falls Church should add at least half an hour to their travel time from 10 p.m. Friday through the Sunday closing. Metro workers will replace cross ties on the tracks in that area.

Throughout the weekend, every other Orange Line train in the direction of Vienna will end its run at West Falls Church and head back toward New Carrollton.

Blue and 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 make repairs on the aerial structure outside the Reagan National Airport Station.

During those hours, Yellow Line trains will operate about every half hour between Huntington and Mount Vernon Square. They will leave Huntington about six minutes and 36 minutes after the hour, and will leave Mount Vernon Square at about 16 minutes and 46 minutes after the hour. When the single-tracking ends each night, the trains will operate about every 15 to 20 minutes between Huntington and Fort Totten.

Blue Line trains will operate about every half hour between Franconia-Springfield and Largo Town Center. They will leave Franconia-Springfield at the top of the hour and at the half hour, and they will leave Largo Town Center at about 16 minutes and 46 minutes after the hour. When the single-tracking ends each night, they will operate about every 15 to 20 minutes between Franconia-Springfield and Largo Town Center.

Green Line: Riders between Prince George's Plaza and College Park should add at least 20 minutes to their travel time from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Workers will be welding rail in that area.

Trip Planner: Metro's guide to schedules and connections is very helpful when there's no track work, but don't rely on it during the weekends. Trip Planner doesn't take the maintenance delays into account.

Ohio Drive shut down
This item updated: The final placement of asphalt and road markings on Ohio Drive will occur between 11 p.m. Friday, Nov. 12, and 5 a.m. Monday, Nov. 15. The entire roadway from the Roosevelt Bridge to Ohio Drive and eastward on Independence Avenue to 17th Street will be shut throughout the weekend, the National Park Service says. That should wrap up the reconstruction project that has slowed commuter traffic since the spring.

The park service suggests a variety of ways around the weekend closure.

From Rock Creek and Potomac Parkway to downtown: Drive south on the parkway to the left-hand turn onto Virginia Avenue NW, then turn right onto southbound 19th Street and make a left onto Constitution Avenue NW.

From Rock Creek and Potomac Parkway to Arlington Memorial Bridge: Drive south on the parkway and make a left onto Virginia Avenue NW, then a right onto 23rd Street NW, then go south to Lincoln Circle and onto the bridge.

To Rock Creek Parkway from East Potomac Park or Independence Avenue: Take Maine Avenue SW to 15th or 17th streets north to westbound Constitution Avenue NW and right onto Virginia Avenue NW to northbound Rock Creek Parkway.

North to I-66/Roosevelt Bridge from East Potomac Park or Independence Avenue: Take Maine Avenue SW to 15th or 17th streets north to westbound Constitution Avenue NW, which becomes I-66 at the bridge, past 23rd Street NW.

Capital Beltway/Telegraph Road
By Sunday evening, a new access ramp should be providing a smoother and safer route onto the Beltway's inner loop, according to the Wilson Bridge project, which is rebuilding the Telegraph Road interchange. But the project advises drivers to stay away from the interchange this weekend, when these closings are scheduled:

The ramp from southbound Telegraph Road to the inner loop will be closed from 9 p.m. Friday through early Sunday evening.

Telegraph Road South will be closed from Duke Street to the Beltway from midnight Sunday to 6 a.m. Sunday morning for striping work. Access from Mill Road to Telegraph Road South also will be shut off during this six-hour period.

Next weekend: The outer loop will be narrowed to one through lane overnight on Friday, Nov. 19 through the afternoon of Saturday, Nov. 20. Project officials say that significant delays are likely on the Beltway.

14th Street Bridge
The District Department of Transportation says it will be closing the right two northbound lanes of I-395 on the 14th Street Bridge from 6 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 13, through 6 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 14. This work is part of the bridge rehabilitation project that began in spring 2009.

11th Street Bridge project
The District Department of Transportation announced these closings on M, O and 12th streets SE for work related to the 1th Street Bridge reconstruction project.

M Street: Traffic will be reduced to one lane in each direction between11th and 12th streets from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday. Curbside parking will not be allowed from 11th Street to the roundabout next to Maritime Plaza.

12th Street: The left lane will be closed between O to M streets from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday.

O Street: The entire street will be closed between 11th and 12th streets from 8 p.m. Monday to 5 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 23 (Thanksgiving week).

Dulles Metrorail project
Utility workers will be on the eastbound side of the Dulles Connector Road east of Magarity Bridge this weekend. These lane closings are planned.
Friday night: Double lane closing to stage equipment.
Saturday: Beginning at 7 a.m., the left lane will close for construction.
Overnight Saturday: Double lane closure to complete the construction.
Sunday: Single lane closure during the daytime to complete restoration of the area.

Tysons traffic
The two left-turn lanes from northbound Chain Bridge Road (Route 123) to westbound Tysons Boulevard have been closed for several months for pier construction. Those lanes are scheduled to reopen before the holiday shopping season.

Bay Bridge inspections
Annual inspections are underway on the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, which may result in some off-peak lane closings on weekdays. Drivers may see some work trucks on the bridge and some inspectors climbing over the bridge structures as part of these inspections, which will continue through the spring.

Redskins play Monday night
The Redskins play the Eagles at FedEx Field at 8:30 p.m. Monday. See our tips for getting to FedEx.

Metrorail will stay open an extra hour, until 1 a.m. Tuesday, to take fans home. (The Redskins pay for that.) The last Blue Line train headed toward Franconia-Springfield will leave Largo Town Center at 12:24 a.m. and Morgan Boulevard at 12:27 a.m. If the game goes into overtime, trains will be available. Metro will add trains at the end of the game.

Fans who park at Morgan Boulevard or Largo Town Center will have to pay $25 using a SmarTrip card when they exit the parking areas. Cash is not accepted. Paid parking at these two stations begins three hours before kickoff, and continues two hours after the game.

By Robert Thomson  | November 13, 2010; 9:05 AM ET
Categories:  Advisories, Driving, Events, Metro, Weekend Work  | Tags:  Dr. Gridlock, The weekend and beyond  
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