Thursday, May. 26
Are you heading to Virginia Beach or Outer Banks for summer’s kick-off holiday weekend? If so, taking an alternate travel route may reduce your travel time.
Planning is important no matter where you’re headed, and the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) offers online tools and a travel-trends map to help prepare for travel during the Memorial Day holiday period. Most highway work zones will also be lifted during the holiday weekend to make trips easier.
MOST MAJOR WORK ZONES SUSPENDED DURING HOLIDAY TRAVEL
VDOT will suspend most highway work zones and lift lane closures on interstates and other major roads in Virginia from noon, Friday May 27 to noon, Tuesday, May 31.
BEACH TRAFFIC ENCOURAGED TO USE ROUTE 460
While Interstate-64 Widening is in progress in Newport News, James City County and York County, motorists planning a through-trip to Virginia Beach or the Outer Banks are encouraged to use Route 460 as an alternate route to avoid congestion.
TRAVEL-TREND MAP HELPS PREDICT PEAK CONGESTION
VDOT’s online, interactive travel-trends map shows peak congestion periods on Virginia interstates during the three previous Memorial Day weekends (2013-2015).
The map shows varying amounts of interstate traffic by time of day, using red for heavy congestion, yellow for moderate congestion and green for little or no congestion.
To use the map, slide the button along the date bar at the top of the map to update predicted traffic information at half-hour intervals between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m. for each day. You also can zoom and pan to specific areas of the state.
Based on the traffic data, periods of heavy congestion on the most recent Memorial Day weekends was most likely to occur between 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. on Friday and Monday.
Historically, heavy congestion is present on I-95 southbound from Saturday morning to Saturday afternoon.
While the map shows trends for delays during the most recent Memorial Day holidays, it cannot precisely predict congestion levels for this year’s four-day travel period.
KNOW BEFORE YOU GO AND CHECK OUT REAL-TIME TRAFFIC INFORMATION ON 511
Real-time information about traffic, incidents and congestion on Virginia roads is available at 511Virginia.org. Download the free mobile VDOT 511 app, or call 511. Coverage on the system now includes many U.S. routes in addition to interstate coverage to better help you plan travel. To report a road problem or get answers to your transportation questions, call VDOT’s Customer Service Center at 800-FOR-ROAD (800-367-7623) around the clock.
NORTHERN VIRGINIA HIGH OCCUPANCY VEHICLE (HOV) SCHEDULE AND OTHER INFORMATION:
Friday, May 27 – Normal HOV restrictions are in effect. Reversible I-395 HOV and I-95 Express Lanes will be southbound starting at noon.
Saturday, May 28 – I-395 reversible lanes and 95 Express Lanes remain southbound until 2 p.m. and switch to northbound by 4 p.m.
Sunday, May 29 – For the Rolling Thunder motorcycle ride, I-395 reversible lanes and 95 Express Lanes will be closed from 7 a.m. to approximately 11 a.m. When the lanes re-open, they will remain northbound for the remainder of the day. On I-66, drivers can also expect total closures eastbound from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. and are advised to use alternate routes.
Monday, May 30 – HOV restrictions on I-66 and I-395 are lifted. I-395 reversible lanes and 95 Express Lanes remain northbound all day.
More information on Northern Virginia HOV schedules can be found at http://www.virginiadot.org/travel/hov-novasched.asp
For information on 95 Express Lanes and 495 Express Lanes, visit http://www.expresslanes.com
Drive.rs are reminded that they need an E-ZPass Flex (for HOV-3 to ride toll-free) or an E-ZPass to use the lanes at all times.
HAMPTON ROADS HOV SCHEDULE, TUNNELS AND OTHER INFORMATION:
I-64/I-264/I-564 HOV diamond lanes – HOV restrictions will be lifted on all HOV diamond lanes on Friday, May 27 and Monday, May 30.
I-64 reversible lanes − Lanes will operate on the regular schedule with no HOV restrictions on Friday, May 27 and Monday, May 30.
I-64 Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel (HRBT) – Local traffic to Virginia Beach is encouraged to use the I-664 Monitor-Merrimac Memorial Bridge-Tunnel (MMMBT) as an alternative to the HRBT. To Virginia Beach, take I-664 south to the MMMBT. Then take the Portsmouth/Norfolk exit (exit 15A) to I-264 east to Virginia Beach.
Travel to Outer Banks – Local traffic to the North Carolina Outer Banks should use I-664 and the MMMBT to save time. From I-664 south, take I-64 west to exit 292, Chesapeake Expressway/I-464/Route 17. Keep left to continue to the Chesapeake Expressway (Route 168), and take Nags Head/Great Bridge (exit 291B) to the Outer Banks.
Highway Advisory Radio (HAR) – Tune to 1680 AM to stay informed on Hampton Roads traffic, travel conditions and construction information.
THREE I-95 REST AREAS AT LADYSMITH, SKIPPERS OPEN WITH TEMPORARY FACILITIES
Three rest areas, two in Caroline County on northbound and southbound I-95 at Ladysmith and another on northbound I-95 in Greensville County at Skippers, were demolished in April and are being reconstructed. While new rest areas are being built, temporary restroom facilities will be available at these sites.
WORK ZONES AND OTHER TRAFFIC ALERTS
While VDOT will lift most lane closures for holiday travel, motorists may encounter permanent work zones or travel delays in the following locations:
Route 609 – Road closed for widening project. Use detour.
Reconstructing intersection at Route 631 (Rio Road). Traffic limited to three lanes northbound and two lanes southbound from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. One lane open each direction from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. Speed limit reduced to 35 mph.
Rio Road crossover at Route 29 is closed. Rio Road traffic cannot cross Route 29. Left-turn movements not permitted at intersection. Detour in place. More information: http://www.Route29Solutions.org
U.S. 501 – Replacing bridge at Route 130 intersection over James River. Traffic controls and flaggers in use.
I-85 – Repairing bridge over railroad at mile marker 28. Traffic limited to one lane both directions. Ramp from I-85 north to Route 1 closed. Ramp from Route 1 south to I-85 south closed. Follow posted detours.
Route 20 – Replacing bridge over Slate River. Speed limit in work zone reduced to 45 mph.
Caroline County/King George County
Route 301 – Rehabilitating bridge over Rappahannock River at Town of Port Royal. Traffic reduced to one lane in each direction.
Route 226 – Replacing bridge 0.3 miles east of U.S. 460. Temporary signal directing traffic.
Route 6 – Replacing bridge over Rivanna River. Traffic restricted to one lane controlled by temporary signals.
I-81 – Reconstructing interchange at exit 310. Shoulders closed. Speed limit through work zone reduced to 60 mph.
U.S. 301 – Replacing southbound bridge over rail tracks north of Emporia. Traffic detoured to I-95.
Isle of Wight County
U.S. 58 – Replacing bridge over rail tracks and Route 632. Follow detour.
Route 680 – Replacing bridge over Stallings Creek. Follow detour.
Route 29/460 – Constructing safety improvements from Concord Turnpike to Candlers Mountain Road in both directions. Speed limit through work zone reduced to 45 mph.
I-64 – Widening interstate. Trucks traveling westbound restricted to right lane between Jefferson Avenue (exit 255) and Yorktown Road (exit 247).
I-264 – Constructing Martin Luther King (MLK) Extension. Right lanes closed both directions between Portsmouth Boulevard and Effingham Street. Two lanes open to traffic.
U.S. 360 – Replacing bridge deck. Traffic limited to two lanes on Mechanicsville Turnpike over I-64, with one travel lane each direction. Ramp from eastbound U.S. 360 to westbound I-64 remains closed. Follow posted detour.
I-581 – Constructing new interchange. Northbound right lane closed from 10th street to Exit 3E at Hershberger Road. Southbound right lane closed from Hershberger Road to 10th street approaching the Valley View Mall area. Shoulders are closed, barricade walls in place.
I-64 – Rehabilitating Maury River bridges. Westbound traffic will detour across median to eastbound lanes between mile markers 53.3 and 55.3. Traffic both directions restricted to single lane and will use eastbound bridge during work on westbound bridge.
Route 680 – Replacing bridge over Flat Swamp. Follow detour.
Route 340 – Replacing bridge over South River. Road closed between Constitution Park and East Avenue. Through traffic will use Broad Street (Route 250) as detour.
Route 205 – Replacing bridge on James Monroe Highway over Mattox Creek. Temporary signals directing single traffic lane on bridge.
I-77/I-81 overlap – High traffic volumes could slow or stop vehicles through this eight-mile stretch. Be alert for delays on northbound I-77 at the I-81 merge.