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News @ ODU

Overnight and Weekend Downtown Tunnel Closures Upcoming; Delays Expected

Hands on steering wheel

Starting this month, drivers could experience delays from lane closures associated with rehabilitation of the westbound tube of the Interstate 264 Downtown Tunnel.

According to information posted on the Elizabeth River Tunnels (ERT) website, rehabilitation work will include weeknight single-lane closures and weekend complete tunnel closures that "are necessary in order to safely complete the work."

Weeknight single-lane closures will take place Monday through Thursday from 8 p.m. until 5 a.m. Weekend tunnel closures will run from 8 p.m. Friday until 5 a.m. Monday.

The weekend work on the Downtown Tunnel is scheduled to begin Friday, Aug. 9, and continue through spring 2014, with the exception of holidays and event weekends. The eastbound tunnel is not affected and will remain open to vehicular traffic, according to ERT.

The rehabilitation work involves structural, fire, life and safety improvements to the 61-year-old facility, connecting Portsmouth and Norfolk, including: tunnel fireproofing; installation of a new directional jet fan ventilation system and tunnel LED lighting; and relocation of fire alarms, extinguishers and hydrants for easier accessibility.

During the weekend closures, traffic will be detoured onto the I-64 High Rise Bridge; motorists should expect delays of up to 30 minutes, according to an ERT traffic advisory. Other alternate routes include the Route 58 Midtown Tunnel, Route 13 Gilmerton Bridge and the South Norfolk Jordan Bridge, which is tolled.

For more project information, visit the Elizabeth River Tunnels website.