Friday, October 1, 2010

Chain Bridge Weekend Guessing Game: Open or Closed?

For those of us who know about Chain Bridge (the top-secret path to Virginia -- not even your GPS knows it's there!), you may also know that you need to check for closing alerts from DDOT or VDOT before you plan to cross the Potomac on this route in any weekend in October.  Yesterday (Sept. 29th) DDOT sent out an email letting everyone know that the bridge would be closed for the October 2-3 weekend.  The following morning, the 30th, came the "never mind" email saying the bridge would be open.  Make up your mind!

You might think the prudent thing for Chain Bridge-bound drivers to do is to keep checking back with DDOT's web site before planning any travel that involves Chain Bridge, but the Chain Bridge page still shows that the bridge is closed this weekend.  The main page does carry the update as "Featured News."  Still, is it too much to expect the specific web page to have accurate information?

Your best bet is to subscribe to DDOT's updates through its email alert system or its Twitter feed.  Here's the schedule as laid out in DDOT's latest email on the subject (but be warned, it could quickly change again!):
Weekend closures of the Chain Bridge are scheduled resume on Friday, October 8, weather permitting, to allow for structural work under the bridge deck. This activity will require for the bridge to remain free of any weight bearing loads. Bridge closures will apply to vehicular traffic, cyclists and pedestrians and are scheduled to resume as follows:

· 8pm on Friday, October 8 thru 5 am on Monday, October 11
· 8pm on Friday, October 15 thru 5 am on Sunday, October 17
· 8 pm on Friday, October 22 thru 5 am on Sunday, October 24 (Tentative)

This weekend closure schedule remains subject to change. Additional weekend closures may be necessary for the completion of the bridge rehabilitation project that began last year and is expected to end in November.

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