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Chain Bridge restoration delayed

Completion of the Chain Bridge reconstruction has been pushed back from January to mid-February.

Several travelers who use the bridge for their commute asked about this during my weekly online discussion Monday.

Arlington, Va.: I was wondering if you have any update on the Chain Bridge construction project. I believe we are approaching the 5th month of the 6 month construction project and I'm hoping it will wrap up in late January. Do you know anything about how that is progressing and if it might complete on time?

After the chat, John Lisle, a spokesman with the District Department of Transportation, said the new plan is to wrap up in mid-February, two to three weeks later than originally planned when the project got underway in early June.

The rehab is basically a preservation project. It won't significantly change the experience for drivers. What they're concerned about is the loss of one of the bridge's three lanes for the duration of the work.

Lisle said that at least part of the delay occurred near the beginning of the project when DDOT worked with the contractor to improve the traffic management plan. A change in July created a turning lane onto Route 123 for Virginia-bound traffic.

In January, after the holidays, there will likely be a complete weekend shutdown of the bridge, Lisle said. This was something that DDOT said could happen during the course of the project, but so far it has not been necessary. But that probably will change toward the end of the work, he said.

By Robert Thomson  |  December 15, 2009; 9:00 AM ET
Categories:  Commuting , Construction , Driving  | Tags: Chain Bridge, DDOT, Dr. Gridlock  
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