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The Weekend and Beyond

The Weather
Sleet, snow and freezing rain are all in the forecast for Saturday afternoon into Sunday. Here's a link to the National Weather Service forecast at AccuWeather.com. Our Traffic page now has road camera views on a clickable map of the region.

Metrorail This Weekend
The transit authority abandoned the experiment with four-car trains. (Yea!) But you'll still be dealing with delays resulting from single tracking around track maintenance and rail car testing. This will involve the Red, Blue, Orange and Green lines. Here's a link to a full description on Metro's Web site.

Humpback Bridge Work
Reconstruction of the Humpback Bridge on the George Washington Parkway just north of Interstate 395 is scheduled to begin on Jan. 7. Traffic delays on the parkway are likely during the 2-1/2 years the project will take to complete. All four lanes will be open during the rush periods, but some will be closed during off-peak periods. Crews may work seven days a week. Got an alternate route?

Canal Road Done
The District's $4 million project to widen Canal Road in front of Georgetown University has ended after 11 months. The work included creation of a left turn lane for inbound Canal Road traffic heading into the university and the addition of a new lane for traffic heading toward M Street at the Whitehurst Freeway intersection.
Both those improvements should ease traffic flow through a very congested area, where several important commuter routes intersect.

HOV Restriction Returns
The Commonwealth Transportation Board has approved a return to HOV-3 restrictions on a three-mile stretch of the I-395 HOV carpool lanes between 3:30 and 6 p.m. Since 1982, they have been open to all drivers during those hours as a way of easing congestion through the Springfield interchange.
With the interchange rebuilt, the Virginia Department of Transportation believes that traffic will flow better once the HOV restriction returns on Jan. 14. Also, it will be easier for state police to enforce the HOV rules.

Senior Bus Break
Starting Jan. 1, seniors and people with disabilities can ride Metrobuses for free on the Montgomery County routes at all times. Montgomery County is paying $220,000 to subsidize the free rides. Make sure you've got the ID card that Metro issues to seniors and the disabled.

Montrose Road Closing
Montgomery County is rebuilding a portion of Montrose Road between Tilden Lane and East Jefferson Street. Traffic is being diverted onto the new part of the Montrose Parkway during the six-month reconstruction. Several readers wrote in to say the congestion in the area is very bad.

Bethesda Circulator
The free shuttle through the shopping and restaurant areas is operating on extended hours this Saturday and next. The Circulator will run along its 2.1-mile, 20-stop loop from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and also will operate during its regular Saturday hours of 6 p.m. to 2 a.m.

Bay Bridge Redecking
Reconstruction has begun on the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, and it is likely to cause traffic delays after 8 p.m. Westbound lane closures can occur as early as 7 p.m. , and the westbound span may close from 8 p.m. until the following morning. During that time, traffic on the other span is two-way.

Point of Rocks Parking
Because construction of additional parking space is progressing, the satellite lot off Ballenger Creek Road is scheduled to close after the last MARC train on Friday, Dec. 21, and there will be no Frederick transit shuttle service to and from the lot to the station after that.

Road Widening
The Virginia Department of Transportation plans to widening Belmont Ridge Road (Route 659) from two to four lanes between the Dulles Greenway and Route 7. The plans also include construction of a bridge over the W&OD Trail in Loudoun County.

By Robert Thomson  |  December 14, 2007; 9:16 AM ET
Categories:  Advisories  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: What Metro Left Unresolved
Next: Commuting Challenges Ahead

Comments

The Humpback Bridge and the George Washington Parkway:

Uh oh!!!!! Another road construction project sponsored by the National Park Service!!

Yikes!!!!

Posted by: Va | December 14, 2007 10:03 AM | Report abuse

From a Rock Creek Parkway commuter to everyone in Arlington and Alexandria who uses Humpback Bridge: its going to be a fun two and a half years for you people. I'm not envious at all!

Posted by: Woodley Park | December 14, 2007 10:37 AM | Report abuse

It's not just the people who use the Humpback Bridge. The merge from the 14th Street Bridge onto the northbound GW Parkway at that spot screws up the outbound traffic on the 14th Street Bridge every night due to queuing. It also makes it hard to get over for the next ramp, which heads to the southbound GW Parkway, because of all the queue-jumpers who try to force their way onto the northbound ramp instead of waiting their turn with everyone else.

I think we'll see more people using the express lanes to cross the river. Makes sense, really, if you're not going to the GW Parkway, since non-HOV traffic can always use the bridge as long as you exit at the ramp just before the US-1 exit.

Posted by: Rich | December 14, 2007 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Uh oh!!!!! Another road construction project sponsored by the National Park Service!!

shut it

Posted by: Anonymous | December 15, 2007 12:14 AM | Report abuse

2.5 years??? Why? I'll bet the 35W bridge in Minneapols gets built faster than that. Why does it take so darn long?

Posted by: dkf747 | December 15, 2007 9:00 AM | Report abuse

We have a saying in the transportation engineering industry: "You can have it built cheaply, you can have it built quickly, you can have it built well...but you can only pick 2 of 3." Since well is mandated and cheaply is dictated by lack of surplus money, quickly is the one that goes 99% of the time.

Minneapolis is a special case, since the extreme disruption and emergency circumstances warrant special funding sources to be put in place which enables quick completion of the job.

Posted by: Woodley Park | December 16, 2007 1:51 PM | Report abuse

That's the answer I expected. If the bridge in question is the one that I'm thinking of, then i cannot understand why it takes so long.

Posted by: dkf747 | December 18, 2007 4:14 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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