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Night Noise Part of HOT Lanes Project

The particular situation described by this Northern Virginia resident is over now, but it illustrates one of the continuing issues involved in construction of the High Occupancy/Toll lanes along the Capital Beltway.

Dear Dr. Gridlock:
 I have not slept at night from exactly 12:05 to 3 a.m. in the past 4 weeks due to the removal of the Braddock Road and I-495 bridge. The machine they are using to demolish it shakes the ground so violently items are falling off my walls.

The noise is so loud, the ear plugs and three fans cannot cover it up. Dr. Gridlock as you probably already know, thousands of people are being impacted by this, just how much can VDOT do with total disregard of the public?
RJ Jewell
North Springfield

Project managers tell me they go door to door to tell residents when demolition of the Beltway bridges is going to require blasting or other things that go boom in the night. But this demolition work has to be done at night or we'd have a traffic nightmare. (Okay, make that an even worse nightmare.)

Jamie Breme, who works at the Virginia Megaprojects office on getting word to the public about such things, says "VDOT does the Beltway demolition at night because the traffic volumes are the lowest and for safety reasons. Anytime a bridge is over a major Interstate the demo work must be done at night."

While demolition of the concrete bridge deck at Braddock Road is done, keep in mind that there are plenty of bridges along the project zone on the western side of the Beltway in Virginia. They all must be rebuilt, because the Beltway will be widened by four lanes as part of this project.

By Robert Thomson  |  April 8, 2009; 11:39 AM ET
Categories:  Driving  
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