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Road closures start today on a busy portion GW Parkway due to major rehab project

GW Parkway between Spout Run and Chain Bridge (photo via Google Maps)

Rolling single-lane closures are coming to a busy portion of George Washington Memorial Parkway starting today (August 1) and continuing through Friday (August 5).

Impacted will be the seven-mile segment of the GW Parkway between Spout Run Parkway in Arlington and the I-495 interchange in McLean.

The closures are needed to complete survey work for the road’s first major rehab project in six decades, the National Park Service announced in a press release late last week.

Northbound lane closures will take place between 7 a.m. and 2:45 p.m. while the southbound closures will run from 9 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

These will be rolling, single-lane closures, meaning the road won’t be shut down completely. However, NPS is still asking drivers to “proceed with caution in these areas and consider using alternate routes” over the next five days.

Concurrent closures maximize the number of survey crews and minimize the duration of closures.

“Single lane closures are needed to create a safe work zone for surveyors conducting surveys,” the press release reads. “These surveys are needed to inform the design for the northern parkway rehabilitation project.”

For the first time since it was built in 1962, the northern section of the GW Parkway is getting a major overhaul. This is the busiest section of the parkway, according to NPS, serving 26 million drivers annually.

“The project will retain and revive the historic beauty and significance of the parkway – including opening scenic views to Washington, D.C – while updating aspects of it to improve the driving experience, safety and water drainage,” notes the agency’s website.

The work will include replacing asphalt, redesigning interchanges, reconstructing stone walls and barriers, replacing the drainage system, lengthening some entrance and exit lanes, and rehabbing the parkway’s historic overlooks.

In recent years, the road has had to close at least several times due to sinkholes.

The $161 million infrastructure project is being funded by the Great American Outdoors Act. Earlier this month, a number of federal officials and local lawmakers participated in a ground-breaking ceremony that kicked off the work.

The project’s first step is the design phase, which starts this week with surveying. Construction is expected to start next year and be completed in 2025.

The full press release from the National Park Service about this week’s lane closures is below.

On Monday, August 1 through Friday, August 5 there will be single lane, rolling closures in the northbound and southbound right lanes between Spout Run Parkway and the 495 interchange. Drivers should proceed with caution in these areas and consider using alternate routes.

  • All northbound closures will take place from 7 a.m. to 2:45 p.m.
  • All southbound closures will take place from 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.

All work is weather dependent, and closures are subject to change. Concurrent northbound and southbound closures and maximizing survey crews minimizes the duration of lane closures.

Single lane closures are needed to create a safe work zone for surveyors conducting surveys. These surveys are needed to inform the design for the northern parkway rehabilitation project.

The NPS has closed parking lot C-2 and part of parking lot B at Turkey Run Park as part of the project to rehabilitate the north section of the George Washington Memorial Parkway. These parking areas will be closed for the duration of the project.

The rehabilitation of the northern section of the parkway was announced by the Department of the Interior on December 7, 2021. In partnership with the National Park Service, the Federal Highway Administration awarded a $161 million contract to rehabilitate this section of the George Washington Memorial Parkway. The project will improve the driving experience, safety and water drainage while retaining and reviving the historic beauty and significance of the parkway – including opening scenic views to Washington, D.C.

Photo via Google Maps

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