The following is posted on the Maryland SHA website:
Major "Stay Away" Weekend on VA Beltway Inner Loop June 1-4
Weather permitting, the Woodrow Wilson Bridge Project has scheduled major work on the Capital Beltway Inner Loop (I-95/495 South) for the weekend of June 1-4 in order to complete paving of the final THRU lanes between U.S. Route 1 and Telegraph Road. The work will have significant traffic impacts, with backups expected well into Maryland. Motorists are strongly urged to consider alternate routes during the weekend to avoid significant delays. Details for the work are as follows:
Beginning at 8 p.m. on Thursday, May 31, the THRU lanes of the Capital Beltway Inner Loop (I-95/495 South) were reduced to one lane between the Woodrow Wilson Bridge and Telegraph Road for allow for roadway construction. A temporary second LOCAL lane has been opened between U.S. Route 1 and Telegraph Road to ease traffic volumes; this temporary lane will be in place through the weekend until Monday morning, and require reduced speeds. Motorists are encouraged to use the Inner Loop LOCAL lanes Friday during the day.
Beginning tonight, Friday, June 1 at 8 p.m., and through the weekend until 5 a.m. on Monday, June 4, all access to the Capital Beltway Inner Loop (I-95/495 South) THRU lanes from Maryland and from U.S. Route 1 in Virginia will be closed. The Inner Loop LOCAL exits to Pershing Avenue and Telegraph Road North will also be closed. Motorists on the LOCAL lanes traveling to the Eisenhower Valley should exit at the Eisenhower Connector and return on Eisenhower Avenue East.
Once reopened the morning of June 4, the two new Inner Loop THRU lanes will be complete and in their final configuration, and work will transition to paving the Inner Loop LOCAL lanes. Only one Inner Loop LOCAL lane will be open in this corridor from June 4 until paving is complete July 2, restricting LOCAL lane traffic. Also, during this interval, motorists on the Inner Loop THRU lanes will not be able to exit at the Eisenhower Connector; travelers headed to Eisenhower Avenue will need to exit at the Van Dorn interchange. On July 2, all Inner Loop work (THRU and LOCAL) between Rt. 1 and the Eisenhower Connector will be complete, and the roadway will be in its final configuration of two THRU lanes and two LOCAL lanes.
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On a good day with light traffic Washington DC traffic is terrible. We usually leave DE at about 4AM and by the time DC traffic is getting into the unbelievable range, we either south, west, or north. Early Sunday morning isn't too bad either (only terrible, not unbelievable).
Thanks for the head's up on the bridge and paving. Considering the number of years they've been at it, it's hard to believe that something may be getting finished. After all, "It's not a job, it's a career".
Pigman & Piglady
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There is a very pleasant alternative route around DC that completely eliminates the DC Beltway. We used it last October and would do it again if we were headed that way. It involves the use of US301 on the east side of the DC area as a way of crossing the Potomac near Richmond. You get get to 301 via I-97 from the Baltimore Beltway (I-695). I think Google shows this route as only a bit slower than taking the Beltway and that, of course, assumes traffic on the Beltway actually moves at posted speeds, which is something that rarely happens.
Sandie & Joel
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When traveling across the Potomac river we always use 301, it is a much better drive.
For out-of-towners reading this thread, the Potomac can also be crossed on the west side of DC just south of Frederick MD on US15. For destinations to the the west, that is another excellent way of avoiding the DC Beltway.