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Big Beltway detour in Tysons overnight Friday

If you're out late Friday night, watch for Beltway traffic congestion in Tysons Corner. The exit ramp from the Beltway's outer loop to southbound Chain Bridge Road (Route 123) will close from midnight to 5 a.m. Saturday for work on the Dulles Metrorail project.

Drivers on the outer loop will do some fancy looping if they want to reach southbound Chain Bridge Road. This is their detour:
-- Take the exit to northbound Chain Bridge Road (Route 123) toward McLean
-- Remain on the exit ramp and use the on-ramp to northbound I-495 (the inner loop)
-- From northbound I-495, take the exit to southbound Chain Bridge Road.

I-66 eastbound
Meanwhile, drivers on eastbound I-66 will encounter lane closures near the Dulles Connector Road (Route 267) interchange Friday night and Saturday morning.

Construction crews will make a slight shift in the lanes of I-66 eastbound from just west of the Dulles Connector Road interchange to Great Falls Street. Here's the timing:
-- Between 10:30 p.m. and 5 a.m., the right and center through lanes will be closed.
-- Between 5 a.m. and 9 a.m. Saturday, crews will reopen those lanes and close the left through lane to complete the lane shift.

Here's a map showing the fancy looping.

night ramp closure 01-30-10.jpg

By Robert Thomson  |  January 27, 2010; 12:45 PM ET
Categories:  Advisories , Congestion , Construction , Driving , Weekend Work  | Tags: Dr. Gridlock, Dulles Metrorail  
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Seems like it might be easier just to take the exit for the inbound Dulles Access Road (signed as "TO I-66 East") and then immediately exit onto 123 and take a right at the bottom of the ramp, instead of looping around multiple times.

Posted by: 1995hoo | January 27, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

In fact, those detour signs might still be posted from this spring.

I agree with 1995hoo that those in the know will likely find that easier. Detouring via Route 7 west to and picking up Route 123 where they cross (or picking up International Drive from Route 7) might be a good alternate as well.

However I don't know that I'd suggest either of those as an offical detour. There were major problems this spring when that detour was set up and suddenly told people preparing to exit on the right that they had to be over to the left. Also drivers get somewhat upset when they pass their exit and its closed, and they feel like they are going the "wrong way" for an extended period of time. Thus, the detour is set to make it nice and simple, and not deviate far from the original route. The signs are posted for those unfamiliar with the area, while those in the know are actually encouraged/expected by traffic engineers to disperse among multiple alternate routes that they are familiar with.

Posted by: thetan | January 27, 2010 4:50 PM | Report abuse

The other detour I might use, depending on where I would be going, would be to take the Toll Road west one exit to Spring Hill Road and then make a left after the tollbooth. Of course this is hypothetical since I do not plan to be in the Tysons area Friday night. I plan to be in my usual seat at the Capitals game!

It's completely understandable why they don't recommend a tolled route as a detour, though. I just throw this out there as an alternative. When I worked in McLean back in 1998-99 and lived in Fairfax near Woodson High School, during the run-up to Christmas I found that 123 would be so backed up that I could save 25 minutes by taking the Toll Road to Spring Hill, paying the 25¢, getting back on going the other way and paying another 25¢, and then getting on the Beltway. I'll pay 50¢ to save 25 minutes any time.

Posted by: 1995hoo | January 27, 2010 11:38 PM | Report abuse

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