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Headaches on the horizon

I-66/Beltway ramps
With the weather improving so dramatically, workers will be out Tuesday night doing some prep work for the reconfiguration of the ramps from eastbound Interstate 66 to the Capital Beltway's inner loop (I-495 north).

If the weather and the new schedule hold, crews should be able to re-stripe the ramps on Wednesday night. So by Thursday morning, drivers using the HOV ramp and the general purpose ramp could be following the traffic pattern that existed before the start of the HOT lanes construction project.

The two ramps would be joining the inner loop at separate points, just as they used to, rather than joining up with each other before the merge into the Beltway. This recent pattern, designed to accommodate the construction, had worsened traffic congestion in the area, so the Virginia Department of Transportation decided to put it back the way it was. But the reconfiguration was slowed by the winter weather.

Use caution Tuesday and Wednesday nights, while the workers are out, then watch for the new traffic pattern on Thursday.

GW Parkway closing
Accident reconstruction investigators plan to close the northbound George Washington Parkway between 10 a.m. and about noon Wednesday. U.S. Park Police will divert all northbound traffic at Spout Run Parkway.

Drivers who need to get north of that point should take Spout Run Parkway to Interstate 66 to Route 267. From there, they can reach the Capital Beltway. But this will add about a half-hour to their travel time, police said. Southbound traffic on the parkway should not be affected by the lane closings.

Ioannis Miliarakis, 69, of Alexandria, died Tuesday from injuries suffered after his pickup truck crashed into a tree in the median of the northbound parkway at about 6 a.m. Monday the park police said. Miliarakis was the only occupant in the single vehicle accident about one mile north of Spout Run Parkway.

By Robert Thomson  |  March 16, 2010; 7:00 PM ET
Categories:  Advisories  | Tags: Dr. Gridlock, Headaches on the horizon  
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Comments

Hi Dr. G, this rant is only semi-related to this post. I've noticed several times this week both on your blog and on WTOP and other traffic reports, misreporting/inaccurate reporting of traffic incidents:

- This incident on the GW Parkway earlier this week was northbound (outbound as far as morning rush goes) yet WTOP was reporting the incident as "inbound GW Pkwy" at the exit for Spout Run. (I would assume inbound at this location would be south, as in towards the Key Bridge.) Yet, the incident was northbound at the exit for Spout Run. There is NO option to exit at Spout Run headed south on the GW.

- Also, I always am taken aback by reports like "beltway delays from Route 50 to I-95." The beltway intersects route 50 and I-95 twice, once each in VA and MD. So what exactly do reports such as this mean?

- And then just this morning on your blog, you are reporting delays on I-95 at New Hampshire Avenue. I can infer what you're really referring to here (the beltway, I-495, at NH Ave) but really I-95 does not intersect with NH Ave, only I-495 does.

Posted by: xyv1027 | March 18, 2010 8:18 AM | Report abuse

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