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The Week Ahead in Traffic, Transit

Route 123 - VDOT.jpg
HOT lanes construction on Rt. 123 blocks left lanes in Tysons. (Joseph Romeo Photography)

Here are some things to look forward to, as this week gets off to a sunny start. The end of school and the start of summer vacation season things to have calmed things down a bit.

Baseball Traffic: The Nats play Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday at 7:05 p.m. against the Boston Red Sox at Nationals Park, South Capitol and M streets. Those are likely to draw good-sized crowds, for Nats games, so that can mean some extra congestion during evening rush hour on the Southeast-Southwest Freeway and along South Capitol Street. Metro is likely to be crowded at the transfer stations and along the Green Line to Navy Yard Station, the closest to the stadium. (Drivers, remember you can park free at RFK Stadium and take the free Nats Express to 300 M St. SE, a few blocks from Nationals Park.)

Virginia Lane Closures: We're in high season now for the big projects along the Capital Beltway in Virginia. The HOT lanes, the Metrorail extension through Tysons and the Telegraph Road interchange project all create traffic disruptions this summer. The best place to look over the lane closure schedule for these, and for the Interstate 95 widening project, is VDOT's Virginia Megaprojects site.

Intercounty Connector Construction: There were several changes over the weekend.
Redland Road: South of Muncaster Mill Road, it has been shifted into its permanent alignment over the connector. About 150 feet south of the bridge over the connector, lanes narrow and shift slightly west. In this area, Shady Grove Presbyterian Church's parking lot and the remainder of Redland Road will be rebuilt.
Interstate 370: Workers shifted lanes near Shady Grove Road. This temporary movement of more than 3,000 feet of the roadway will allow for continued construction of a connector bridge. The new speed limit in the area will be 40 mph. The shift will be in place through late winter. Motorists will still have the same number of through lanes and should not notice a major impact.

14th Street, Chain Bridges: Rush hour traffic appears to be flowing pretty well through those two work zones. Arlington County fixed the traffic camera on the Virginia side of the Chain Bridge, which is a big help. Drivers just wish they could see some evidence of work in that work zone, which has shut one of Chain Bridge's three lanes for the next eight months. At the 14th Street Bridge, we're still in the first phase of that year-long rehab project.

By Robert Thomson  |  June 22, 2009; 7:47 AM ET
Categories:  Advisories , Commuting  | Tags: 14th street bridge, Dr. Gridlock, chain bridge, intercounty connector, vdot  
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Next: ND: Traffic Alert: Accident Cleared on Outer Loop at Georgia Ave.


Will someone PLEASE post how the exit ramp from 495 south onto 123 will be designed at final stage? If they keep the current layout with the exit ramp merging with 123 and immediately turning into to turn only lane for International Drive, some traffic engineer should be made to stand out there in the middle of the road and watch the congestion caused and the near-accidents (and actual bumper banging).

Posted by: ssolomo | June 22, 2009 10:29 AM | Report abuse

In a similar fashion, coming down the hill from Tysons Blvd to the Beltway, the lane configuration is horribly designed. You have a two lane right exit that is almost always backed up at rush hour, and what should be two thru lanes to the left. Instead, the geniuses at VDOT have the left lane ending, the #2 lane going thru, and anyone wanting to exit to the inner loop in the #3 lane that's backed up from traffic exiting to the outer loop. This results in dangerous shuffle to the right, where everyone seems to move over at a different time, if at all.
It should be re-striped as two (left) thru lanes, and two lanes as exit-only to the outer loop.

Posted by: vtavgjoe | June 22, 2009 11:14 AM | Report abuse

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