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Bridge Project to Close One Lane of Columbia Pike Through 2014

by ARLnow.com — December 10, 2012 at 3:55 pm 3,032 32 Comments

Construction will close the righthand lane of eastbound Columbia Pike in the area of the Washington Boulevard bridge through 2014.

VDOT will close the lane as soon as tomorrow as part of the ongoing Washington Boulevard bridge and interchange project. Drivers should expect new traffic patterns on eastbound Columbia Pike as a result.

“Motorists in the right lane must take the exit ramp to Washington Boulevard,” VDOT said in a press release. “Motorists on eastbound Columbia Pike can use the left lane to continue east or to access the ramp to Washington Boulevard.”

The closure is expected to be in place through 2014. The overall project is expected to be completed in the summer of 2015.

Photo via Google Maps

  • Not Me

    Holy Crap! I freaked out for a second. Kinda misleading isn’t it??? The article lead me to believe that the right most lane would be closed – as in blocked off.

    That it is being redesignated as right turn only all the time is actually great. It has been very danerous for a long time for those in the left wishing to turn right during the 6:30-9AM traffic pattern.

    • http://www.arlnow.com ARLnow.com

      As stated in the article, the righthand lane will be closed to traffic under the bridge, according to VDOT

      • Not Me

        I don’t see where it says that (under the bridge), but I’m relieved nontheless.

      • http://twitter.com/jennrubenstein jenn

        so basically, the traffic pattern that’s supposedly in place during the am rush (right lane right turn only, left lane right turn or straight) is going to be permanent? that doesn’t sound nearly as terrible as i feared.

        • http://www.arlnow.com ARLnow.com

          Yes, that is correct.

    • CrystalMikey

      “Motorists on eastbound Columbia Pike can use the left lane to continue east or to access the ramp to Washington Boulevard.”

    • @Not Me (then who!?)

      “It has been very danerous for a long time for those in the left wishing to turn right during the 6:30-9AM traffic pattern”? (overlooking the “dangerous” type-o) It’s not those in the left turning right who make it dangerous – it’s those in the right who are not paying attention the, at least, five (5) signs stating the traffic pattern at that time of day.

      • Not Me

        My words: ‘has been very danerous [sic] for those IN THE LEFT wishing to turn right…’

        1. You stated the same thing I did, differently.
        2. Pointing out my type-o does not constitute ‘overlooking’ it.
        3. Do you object to everyones tongue in cheek username, or just those you incoherently rebut?

  • Brian

    A bridge that takes 2 years to build? I got a bridge to sell yah, Arlington.

    • Paul

      Arlington County has very little to do with it. It’s a VDOT project. Also, it could be done much sooner, if not for the need to maintain traffic through the site. If it could be shut down completely, probably a 6-9 month project.

      • Josh S

        In China, it would already be done.

        • drax

          In China, it would already have collapsed.

    • Josh S

      Actually, the project is fairly complicated – not only tear down and rebuild a bridge, while it’s being used but also reconstruct pretty much the entire interchange. While it’s still being used. If it was in the middle of nowhere, and all they were doing was building a bridge then right, it’s maybe a couple of months.

  • craig

    MONORAIL!!!

  • Zimmerman

    I am dismayed that this will take 2 years to build. Let me find a new contractor.

  • Piker

    From ARLnow.com – “As stated in the article, the righthand lane will be closed to traffic under the bridge, according to VDOT”

    umm. no it doesn’t

    It says “Construction will close the righthand lane of eastbound Columbia Pike in the area of the Washington Boulevard bridge through 2014.”

    if you changed “in the area of” to “directly under” then it would say what you think it says. This is a very crucial detail to those of us that drive on the Pike every day. Please fix it.

    • CrystalMikey

      “Motorists on eastbound Columbia Pike can use the left lane to continue east or to access the ramp to Washington Boulevard.”

      It says it right there. After telling you in the sentence you quoted that the right lane will be an “exit only” lane. Hence the left will let you keep on motoring underneath the bridge and down the Pike.

    • JohnB

      Actually, more of the lane will be closed than what is “directly under” the bridge. If you understand English and take the time to read and process it’s pretty clear.

      • Clear as Mud

        How about “the lane designated for the Columbia Pike street trolley will be closed”

  • Steve

    I’m surprised no one has started bitching about the trolly in this field. #chillpeople

  • in the know

    Eastbound Columbia Pike will only have one lane under the bridge, westbound will stay two lanes. And Arlington County DOES have a lot of say and has very much to do with this project, it is a VDOT project though. I’d avoid this area during rush hour if you know whats good for you.

  • Sandra

    Traffic is already heavy on Columbia Pike but that bridge needs replacement, and has for a long time. If there are any contractors out there, do you suppose this could be done faster?

  • Joan

    That trolley, including its installation and operation, will make traffic on Columbia Pike a nightmare. The construction of this bridge will pale in comparison. There is no way motorists should be asked bear the backups this will cause. Further, people in this area are not used to driving with trollies on the road and I think this will cause many accidents that could be avoided by starting new bus service.

    • Josh S

      See, for me, when I think of nightmare, I think of fantastically scary scenes that inspire terror, panic, and cause me to sweat and thrash and maybe even call out in fear for my very existence.

      A streetcar trundling down the street? Not really in the same category.

      • Louise

        I like Josh S. He has a brain.

      • Skeptical

        To be fair, the prospect of having to inch around that fricken trolley while traffic goes crazy and people start to do stupid things on the Pike… actually does inspire terror, panic, sweat and a certain amount of thrashing.

        • CrystalMikey

          Yeah, it already happens with drivers trying to weave around the Metro buses and left turners.

  • AL

    This is a great victory for Columbia Pike! It sure beats the contradictory signs they had up for about 3-4 weeks.

  • YTK

    omigod all this nitpicking

  • V

    Anyone else think they mean that the right lane is completely closed so the only way to get to Washington Blvd is to go under the bridge……down the hill (passing the airforce memorial)…..through the light grabbing washington blvd by the pentagon?

  • PikeDriver

    I’ve always been curious why Arlington didn’t add one of those “light up” signs in the morning indicating that the right lane is right turn only. For those of us that drive it every day, this is pretty obvious, but expecting people to read and comprehend the hour restrictions while navigating the Pike seems foolhardy. I have no doubt that signs like that are expensive, but I’ve long thought that Arlington enjoys the ticket revenue from the right-lane-straight drivers…

  • Mack

    “Snga… Snga… ‘S Not gonna drink here anymore, anyway.”

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