Thursday, September 10, 2009

Chain Bridge construction, but bike lane remains open

The Chain Bridge is undergoing construction/repair work until January 2010, but the sidewalk/bike lane remains open so far. Also, the C&O Towpath under the bridge has a short detour down/up the bank, but it still provides access to the concrete ramp up to the Chain Bridge sidewalk/bike path.

Here is the offical notice from DDOT:

DDOT to Repair and Repaint Chain Bridge

Work Scheduled to Start June 1; Traffic Will Be Impacted

The District Department of Transportation (DDOT) is scheduled to begin an eight month project on or about Monday, June 1, 2009, to repair and repaint Chain Bridge over the Potomac River and the C & O Canal. All of the work is anticipated to be completed in January, 2010.

To ensure the safety of work crews and motorists, one of the two inbound lanes on the bridge will be closed to traffic throughout the construction period. A single lane in each direction will be maintained at all times on weekdays, but delays are possible and motorists are advised to use alternate routes, especially during peak hours.

In addition, certain repairs on the bridge will require the contractor to close all of the lanes. Those closures will be temporary and conducted only on non-holiday weekends between 10 p.m. Friday and 6 a.m. Monday. Notice will be posted 72 hours in advance at the approaches to the bridge for these special closures.

The current Chain Bridge was completed in 1939 and sits on stone piers from the 1870’s. It carries close to 22,000 cars a day and the last major rehabilitation of the bridge was done in the early 1980’s.

The work on the bridge will include:

The replacement of pin and hanger assemblies for the steel girders
The installation of catcher beams
The repair and reconditioning of the bridge joints
Repainting of the bridge structure

DDOT will deploy variable message signs to alert motorists to the impending work, and detour routes will be posted.

Posted by EH
[end of DDOT notice]

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