Progress on Three Bridges
The District and Maryland are reporting progress on some of bridge projects that have vexed commuters: the Klingle Bridge on Connecticut Avenue, South Capitol Street's Douglass Bridge and the Capital Beltway's Legion Bridge.
Klingle: The District Department of Transportation says that on Wednesday the bridge rehabilitation will move into the far right lanes on the northbound side and the sidewalk. The other sidewalk, on the bridge's west side, will remain open.
For motorists, it's the same drill. Watch those red and green arrows overhead to tell you which lanes are open and don't get them confused with the red and green of the traffic signals at the intersections north and south of the bridge.
During the morning rush, three lanes will be open southbound and one northbound. During evening rush, three lanes will be open northbound direction with one southbound. All other times, it's two open in each direction.
Work hours are Monday through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. The whole thing is scheduled to be done in April.
Douglass: The reconstruction that began on July 6 is on schedule, DDOT said. So far, workers have removed the concrete deck, installed the equipment to lower the elevated roadway on the north side and demolished the steel structure, ramp and abutment on South Capitol Street.
The highlight for this week should come on Thursday, when the elevated roadway is scheduled to be lowered.
But the repairs to the bridge deck also will continue, along with some utility work on South Capitol Street.
All the transportation agencies involved are continuing to monitor the commute to see what adjustments they might need to make. DDOT, for example, was working on the timing of the lights along Pennsylvania Avenue, because it seemed that traffic was sluggish east of the Anacostia River while the Sousa Bridge was pretty open.
One Southern Maryland commuter wrote in to say that outbound traffic is backing up at ramp from I-295 that leads onto southbound Suitland Parkway and thinks the timing of the first traffic light may be part of the problem. DDOT spokeswoman Karyn LeBlanc said the department would check on that one, too.
Metro made some more buses available for the routes that are bringing people to the Green Line stations. The Maryland Transit Administration said its commuter bus schedules would stay the same this week, but it could still make changes later, based on experience.
Legion: The Maryland State Highway Administration says the staging area south of the bridge, which has been slowing traffic trying to merge from the northbound George Washington Parkway onto the Capital Beltway's inner loop, should be gone by mid-September. The original target was mid-November, but SHA says the bridge repainting is ahead of schedule.
The project itself will continue into next year, but the staging area -- the part that really affects the flow of traffic -- can be out of there about two months from now. After that, the main impact on motorists would be occasional overnight closings of single lanes on the outer loop of the bridge.
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