Jason Bond 540-387-5493
Aug. 12, 2011
I-81 TRUCK CLIMBING LANE BLASTING SCHEDULE ALTERED FOR RETURN OF VIRGINIA TECH STUDENTS
Blasting rescheduled to evening hours on Wednesday, Aug. 17 and Thursday, Aug. 18
SALEM –To lessen traffic congestion associated with Virginia Tech’s move-in days, the Virginia Department of Transportation and design-build contractor CH2 MHILL Constructors Inc. will change the time of the daily traffic detour on southbound Interstate 81 in Montgomery County two days next week.
Since Aug. 2, southbound I-81 traffic has been detoured onto Route 11/460 daily, Monday through Thursday, starting around 10:30 a.m. each day. Blasting activities and the I-81 southbound detour will continue at their regular 10:30 a.m. time on Monday, Aug. 15 and Tuesday, Aug. 16. However, the blasting detour for Wednesday, Aug. 17 and Thursday, Aug. 18 will be scheduled for 6 p.m. on those two days only. As usual, no blasting is scheduled for Friday through Sunday.
The regular detour time will be postponed until later in the day on Wednesday and Thursday to avoid heavy daytime traffic volumes associated with Virginia Tech students returning. Daily blasting detours will return to their regular scheduled time at 10:30 a.m. on Monday, August 22.
The following traffic impacts are expected at approximately 10:30 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 15 and Tuesday, Aug. 16 and at approximately 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 17 and Thursday, Aug. 18:
• Southbound I-81 traffic will be detoured off I-81 at exit 132 (Dixie Caverns) onto Route 11/460 and back onto I-81 at exit 118 (Christiansburg). The detour will be removed once I-81 is deemed safe for the traveling public. State Police will assist with this detour. A right lane closure will be in place on southbound Route 11/460 to help traffic exit from I-81 onto Route 11/460.
• On northbound I-81, a rolling road block starting at mile marker 114 will be used to slow traffic. During blasting, the on-ramps will be restricted onto northbound Interstate 81 at exit 118 (Christiansburg) and onto southbound I-81 at exit 128.
• Traffic on Route 626 (Den Hill Road) will be stopped within one-half mile of the Route 626 bridge over Interstate 81. Motorists should watch for flaggers.
Blasting on the truck climbing lane project is expected to continue through spring 2012. Work on the truck climbing lane project is expected to be completed in November 2013.
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