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Route 15 Detour in Loudoun Starts Friday

The Virginia Department of Transportation is engaged in an ambitious safety project along a 20-mile stretch on the western side of the Washington suburbs where traffic has been building. The traffic-calming program along the Route 50 corridor in Fauquier and Loudoun counties includes construction of four roundabouts at Gilbert's Corner.

Many planners consider roundabouts, with their central islands and traffic-circulating lanes, to be more efficient and safer than standard intersections with traffic lights or stop signs. (And yes, they are trying to slow down traffic.)

Construction of the roundabouts at Gilbert's Corner, west of Dulles Airport, are an effort to improve safety and slow traffic along Routes 50 and 15. The four are being built at the Route 50/15 junction, Route 50 and Watson Road and both ends of recently built Howsers Branch Drive.

VDOT says the link that Howsers Branch Drive has created between Routes 50 and 15 will allow traffic on northbound Route 15 and westbound Route 50 to bypass Gilbert 's Corner.

So to work on the roundabouts, VDOT is going to create an eight-week traffic detour starting Friday. Route 15 will be closed between Route 50 and Howsers Branch Drive, about a quarter-mile south of Gilbert's Corner. Motorists will detour using Howsers Branch Drive and a new roundabout on Route 50. VDOT expects there will be short traffic delays as a result.

Additional detours are planned for Route 50 and Watson Road over the next several months to complete construction of the roundabouts, VDOT says. The project is scheduled to be completed late this year.

Here's a map of the Route 50/15 intersection at Gilbert's Corner.

View Larger Map


By Robert Thomson  |  March 31, 2009; 1:43 PM ET
Categories:  Advisories , Construction , Safety  
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