Category Archives: RoadNews

AAA: This Independence Day will be Historic, More Americans to Travel than Ever Before

This Independence Day, a record-breaking 44.2 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more away from home, taking to the nation’s roads, skies, rails and waterways to honor the red, white and blue. With 1.25 million more travelers than last year, 2017 will be marked as the most traveled Independence Day holiday weekend ever.

“Combined, strong employment, rising incomes and higher consumer confidence bode well for the travel industry, in particular this Independence Day weekend,” said Bill Sutherland, AAA senior vice president, Travel and Publishing. “A historic 44.2 million Americans will travel to celebrate our nation’s freedom this year, adding to an already bustling summer travel season.”

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Expect Delays. Five Straight Weekends of I-5 Lane Restrictions in SeaTac

The Washington State Department of Transportation reports five straight weekends of northbound I-5 lane reductions in SeaTac have begun.

I-5 travelers should expect backups and delays on northbound Interstate 5 through SeaTac and Kent each of the next five weekends.

Contractor crews working for the Washington State Department of Transportation have reduced northbound I-5 to two lanes during the first of five consecutive weekends. During the lane closures, crews will repave northbound I-5 between State Route 516 and the Southcenter area. Similar work during the weekend of June 3-4 resulted in backups of up to 6 miles.

“Drivers need to use alternatives, or be prepared for long delays,” said WSDOT Traffic Engineer Mike Swires. “We’ve already seen up to hour-long delays during the weekend in this area for this project. Travelers should use transit, take alternate routes, or delay or postpone their trips on northbound I-5 in the Kent-SeaTac area.”

Crews will also close the SR 516 on-ramps to northbound I-5 and the South 200th Street on- and off-ramps throughout the weekend. Drivers need to watch for construction vehicles entering and exiting the work zone in the left lanes.

All work is weather-dependent. If the weather holds, WSDOT expects to finish the work during the July 14–17 lane reductions.


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Weekend Night Closures on I-5 in Oregon

The Oregon Department of Transportation reports the following I-5 construction travel advisory for this weekend:

  • The ramp from northbound Interstate 5 to northbound OR 217 will be closed Friday and Saturday nights, June 9 and 10, for maintenance.The closures will begin each night at 9 p.m. and end by 5 a.m. the next morning.

 


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California I-5 Construction Advisory

The California Department of Transportation reports the following I-5 construction work, from SR-134 to Magnolia Boulevard in the Los Angeles area. Work will occur during daytime hours unless otherwise noted.

  • Buena Vista/Winona Undercrossing: Crews are building concrete walls between abutments (the end of the bridge).
  • Northbound San Fernando Boulevard between Empire Avenue and Northbound I-5 on-ramp: Crews are installing temporary barrier and clearing slopes.
  • Victory Place Separation: Crews are backfilling abutment walls, removing shoring, and constructing the bridge’s soffit and stem walls.
  • Northbound I-5 between Buena Vista Street and Cohasset Street: Crews are constructing retaining walls and removing trees and other vegetation along San Fernando Boulevard.
  • Southbound I-5 at Buena Vista Street: Crews are constructing approach slabs and concrete barrier.
  • Southbound I-5 between Buena Vista Street and Burbank Boulevard: Crews are placing lean concrete base and pavement.

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2017 Memorial Day Weekend Travel Highest Since 2005

The American Automobile Association (AAA) projects that 39.3 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more away from home this Memorial Day weekend. That is one million more travelers than last year taking to the roads, skies, rails and water, creating the highest Memorial Day travel volume since 2005.

“The expected spike in Memorial Day travel mirrors the positive growth seen throughout the travel industry this year,” said Bill Sutherland, AAA senior vice president, Travel and Publishing. “Higher confidence has led to more consumer spending, and many Americans are choosing to allocate their extra money on travel this Memorial Day.”

The Memorial Day holiday travel period is defined as Thursday, May 25 to Monday, May 29.

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5 Essential Tips for Memorial Day Weekend Road Warriors

Memorial Day is just around the corner, and that means the unofficial start to summer! As Americans prepare for long-weekend getaways, trips to the beach and family picnics, they’ll also be faced with what’s predicted to be one of the busiest Memorial Day Weekends on record. Relatively low gas prices means the roads will be extra crowded.

Here’s our top 5 essential tips to consider if you’re planning a Memorial Day weekend road trip…

Closures and Detours for I-5 Construction in Portland

The Oregon Department of Transportation reports that the second of four full weekend closures of Interstate 5 in one direction between the Marquam Bridge and North Broadway will take place in the southbound direction from midnight Friday night, April 21 until as late as 4:30 a.m. Monday, April 24. The Morrison Bridge will be closed for the same period. Travelers should make plans now to avoid delays on detour routes.

During the I-5 southbound closure, travelers will be diverted to I-405 southbound to reach I-5 south of downtown. A lane of I-5 south will be open for travelers to access I-84 east. Travelers heading in from Washington State could consider using Interstate 205 to avoid congestion in the central city. Travelers should consider using other routes, including surface streets, or taking transit, depending on their travel plans.

The onramp to I-84 east from the Moda Center will be open for fans departing the Blazer playoff game on Saturday, April 22.

The remaining weekend closures of Interstate 5 will take place from 10 p.m. Friday to 4:30 a.m. Monday on the following weekends:

  • Friday, May 5 to Monday, May 8 (northbound)
  • Friday, May 12 to Monday, May 15 (northbound)

Closing I-5 will allow contractor Hamilton Construction to perform concrete repairs underneath the Burnside Bridge, which spans lanes of the freeway. Areas of the concrete are degraded and at risk of falling on the freeway. This work is part of Multnomah County’s Burnside Bridge Maintenance project. The closures will also allow ODOT crews to do work on the closed section of freeway, including paving, survey, electrical, inspection and seismic work.

The Morrison Bridge closure is for a separate Multnomah County project that is replacing the deck on the lift span.


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Northbound I-5 Construction Work Begins in Washington

After 50 years as the region’s main north-south route, Interstate 5 is about to get a much-needed facelift between Kent and Seattle. The Washington State Department of Transportation has started one of its most ambitious interstate restoration projects, renewing nearly 22 miles of northbound I-5 in the next three years.

More than 200,000 vehicles use the interstate daily – that’s 73 million families, commuters and freight carriers each year that rely on I-5. After five decades of use expansion joints are wearing out, concrete panels are broken and other sections of the highway have deep ruts.

“We’ve been maintaining I-5 for more than 50 years, but it’s time for major preservation work so the interstate can continue to serve our region for decades to come,” said WSDOT Northwest Regional Administrator Lorena Eng.

The work is actually two separate projects. The first started Monday, April 17, in south King County, contractor crews working for WSDOT will restore northbound I-5 between South 260th Street in Kent and the Duwamish River in Tukwila.

Later this year, contractor crews will start work on northbound I-5 between Martin Luther King Jr. Way and Northeast Ravenna Boulevard in Seattle.

Most of the work will take place at night, but drivers can expect weekend-long lane closures on northbound I-5 for as many as 26 weekends. Much of that weekend work will take place during the next two to three summers. Dates have yet to be scheduled.

The work is scheduled be complete in 2019.

PROJECT DETAILS

South 260th Street to Duwamish River

Contractor crews from Gary Merlino Construction will complete northbound I-5 work similar to what has been done on southbound I-5 between the Duwamish River and Federal Way. To finish 8.9 miles of northbound rehabilitation by fall 2018, they will:

  • Replace eight expansion joints – four at Interurban Avenue and four on the Duwamish River Bridge
  • Repave four miles of all lanes between South 216th Street in SeaTac and South 178th Street in Tukwila
  • Replace about 440 broken concrete panels
  • Grind concrete sections to eliminate ruts

This I-5 construction project will reduce northbound I-5 to two lanes on 10 weekends – four to replace the expansion joints and six to repave between South 216th and South 178th streets.

Martin Luther King Jr. Way to Northeast Ravenna Boulevard

Much of this 13-mile section of northbound I-5 is elevated freeway, with expansion joints connecting concrete highway sections. By late 2019, contractor crews will:

  • Replace 37 expansion joints
  • Replace all concrete panels from near the West Seattle Bridge to near the express lanes ramp, except for bridges
  • Replace hundreds of broken concrete panels
  • Grind concrete sections to remove ruts
  • Replace four bridge approach slabs on three bridges
  • Repave 24 on- and off-ramps

During 2017, work on this I-5 construction project will take place at night. In 2018 to 2019, contractor crews also will work at night, but could require up to 16 weekends of northbound I-5 lane closures.


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Full Closure, Detours, Traffic Delays for I-5 Construction in California

The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) will close ALL lanes of the north- and southbound Santa Ana Freeway (I-5) between the San Gabriel River Freeway (I-605) and Norwalk Boulevard, nightly through Thursday, April 13.

In addition, the north- and southbound I-605 connectors to I-5 will also be closed nightly, from 9 p.m. Monday, April 10 to 5:30 a.m. Tuesday, April 11, while this work is conducted.

Nightly, through April 13 Northbound I-5 closures will be in effect
from midnight to 5 a.m.

DETOUR: Exit northbound I-5 at Norwalk Boulevard off-ramp; west on Adoree Street, west on Imperial Highway, west on Firestone Boulevard to northbound I-605 on-ramp. Transition from northbound I-605 back onto northbound I-5.
Southbound I-5 closures will be in effect from 11 p.m. to 5 a.m.

DETOUR: Southbound I-5 traffic will be directed onto southbound I-605 and exit at Firestone Boulevard, east on Firestone Boulevard, east on Imperial Highway, south on Frontage Road, then access the
southbound I-5 on-ramp.

Once completed, the project will improve corridor mobility from the Los Angeles/Orange County line to the San Gabriel River Freeway (I-605), provide congestion relief, safety improvements and better
facilitate the movement of goods and services.

Detour signs will be posted for motorists’ convenience. Expect delays along the route during this time. Caltrans advises motorists to “Be work Zone Alert.”


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Ramp Closures, Detours and Delays for I-5 Construction in Tacoma

The Washington State Department of Transportation reports the following traffic impacts as a result of I-5 construction in the Tacoma area – Portland Avenue to Port of Tacoma Road.

This I-5 construction project builds new HOV lanes on I-5 in Tacoma and Fife, and a new northbound I-5 Puyallup River Bridge.

Extended ramp closure
The month-long closure of the northbound SR 7 ramp to northbound I-5 has been extended into April while crews continue to reconstruct a new ramp that will join a newly widened I-5. The delay is due to excessive rain and wet soil conditions. WSDOT will announce an opening date once the information is available.

Ramp closures
In all instances where a ramp is closed, a signed detour will be in place. Drivers are advised to plan extra time into their overnight travels.

Friday, April 7

  • Southbound I-705 ramp to northbound I-5 and southbound SR 7 will close from 11:59 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.
  • East 38th Street ramp to northbound SR 7 will close from 11:59 p.m. to 6 a.m. the following day.

Saturday, April 8

  • East 28th Street ramp to northbound I-5 will close from 11 p.m. to 11 a.m. the following day.

Monday, April 10

  • Southbound I-5 exit to SR 7 will close from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.
  • East 38th Street on-ramp to northbound SR 7 will close from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. the following day.
  • 38th Street on-ramp to southbound I-5 near the Tacoma Mall will close from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.
  • Northbound I-5 exit to the City Center (#133) will close from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.
  • Southbound I-705 exits to northbound I-5/SR 7 will close from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.

Tuesday, April 11

  • Southbound I-5 exit to SR 7 will close from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.
  • 38th Street on-ramp to southbound I-5 near the Tacoma Mall will close from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.
  • East 38th Street on-ramp to northbound SR 7 will close from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. the following day.
  • Northbound I-5 exit to the City Center (#133) will close from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.
  • Southbound I-705 exits to northbound I-5/SR 7 will close from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.

Wednesday, April 12

  • Southbound I-5 exit to SR 7 will close from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.
  • 38th Street on-ramp to southbound I-5 near the Tacoma Mall will close from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.
  • East 38th Street on-ramp to northbound SR 7 will close from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. the following day.
  • Northbound I-5 exit to the City Center (#133) will close from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.
  • Southbound I-705 exits to northbound I-5/SR 7 will close from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.

Thursday, April 13

  • Southbound I-5 exit to SR 7 will close from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.
  • East 38th Street on-ramp to northbound SR 7 will close from 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. the following day.
  • 38th Street on-ramp to southbound I-5 near the Tacoma Mall will close from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.
  • Northbound I-5 exit to the City Center (#133) will close from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.
  • Southbound I-705 exits to northbound I-5/SR 7 will close from 11:59 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.
  • Northbound I-5 exit to Portland Avenue will close from 11:59 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.

Friday, April 14

  • 38th Street on-ramp to southbound I-5 near the Tacoma Mall will close from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.
  • East 38th Street on-ramp to northbound SR 7 will close from 11:59 p.m. to 6 a.m. the following day.
  • Northbound I-5 exit to the City Center (#133) will close from 11:59 p.m. to 5 a.m. the following day.
  • Southbound I-705 exits to northbound I-5/SR 7 will close from 11:59 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.
  • Southbound I-5 exit to SR 7 will close from 11:59 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.
  • Northbound I-5 exit to Portland Avenue will close from 11:59 p.m. to 4 a.m. the following day.

On the road? Why not take us with you. Our websites are mobile-friendly! Visit our growing family of exit guides:  I-4 Exit GuideI-5 Exit GuideI-10 Exit GuideI-75 Exit Guide, and I-95 Exit Guide. Detailed exit service listings… discount lodging, camping, food, gas and more for every exit along the way!