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Outer Loop Closed Overnight Saturday

Continuing construction on a flyover bridge as part of the Springfield Interchange Project will result in closures on the Capital Beltway this weekend.

From Saturday, April 2, at 8 p.m., until Sunday, April 3, at 9 a.m., the Outer Loop (eastbound) will be closed to all traffic, resulting in a 10-mile detour.

"We're making our way around," said Steve Titunik of Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT), which is overseeing the eight-year, $676 million Interchange Project.

VDOT is in the process of building the No. 627 bridge, a flyover which, when completed, will connect I-395 south to the Outer Loop of I-495 toward the Woodrow Wilson Bridge. In past weeks, raising the giant beams and securing them has meant overnight closures of lanes, but the weekends of April 2-3 and April 9-10 will mean larger scale closures, as the beams are hoisted over lanes of traffic.

"We're going from pier to pier, and now it's that time that we have to cross the Beltway," said Titunik.

On Saturday, April 2, traffic heading east on the Beltway wishing to continue east through Springfield toward the Wilson Bridge, or to head northbound on I-395 will be detoured to I-95 south, and exited at Exit 166A (Fairfax County Parkway, Newington, Fort Belvoir), to head them back to their destination — I-95 North, I-395 north and I-495 east. The detour is an estimated 10 miles.

Southbound traffic on I-395 heading for I-495 east/I-95 north will also be delayed due to periodic lane closures.

Titunik said the HOV lanes on I-395 south would remain open during the construction, and VDOT is encouraging motorists heading southbound to use those lanes, so as to now interfere with the traffic on the detour.

"We hope all people on 395 south, heading to Springfield and south, would get on the HOV lanes," he said.

Bridge 627 is one of two bridges that are scheduled to be opened by the end of 2005. The other bridge, No. 609, which would connect I-495 east to I-95 south will go under major construction this summer.

Titunik said to expect closures on I-395 the night of Saturday, April 9, when traffic heading south on that route will be detoured onto I-495 west to Braddock Road, to get back on I-95 south. The rest of the month will be closure-free, he said.