Jennifer McCord 703-259-1779


July 4, 2009

Special light-timing plan will help move visitors out of D.C. after fireworks

CHANTILLY, Va.—The Virginia Department of Transportation will help visitors to Washington, D.C. celebrations get home more smoothly this July 4 by re-timing lights along several major routes in Northern Virginia.

VDOT engineers identified 115 critical signalized intersections in the region that are likely to be impacted by July 4 traffic, along heavily used corridors such as Routes 1, 7, 29, 50, 123, 236 and 244. To help move motorists into and out of the D.C. area, signals along these routes will be timed for peak traffic conditions beginning at 8 a.m. on Saturday, and then timed specifically for traffic moving south and west from D.C. between 9:30 p.m. and midnight.

VDOT’s signal operations staff will monitor traffic conditions throughout the day and adjust the light timing as necessary.

“Each year we look for ways to help the increased traffic on July 4 flow as smoothly as possible,” said Ling Li, Operations Engineering Manager at VDOT’s Northern Virginia Transportation Operations Center. “Since 1999, we have examined traffic patterns from previous years and designed a special signal-timing plan to accommodate the influx of motorists who will use these major routes.”

For the fifth year, VDOT’s July 4 signal-timing plan will also support D.C.’s “Fast Forward” emergency traffic operations exercise, which evaluates signal-timing patterns and emergency traffic operations capabilities in the case of an actual emergency in D.C.

More information on VDOT traffic signal operations and other projects is available at

Information in VDOT news releases was accurate at the time the release was published. For the most current information about projects or programs, please visit the project or program Web pages. You may find those by searching by keyword in the search Virginia DOT box above.

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