Bridge construction activity picks up at Rappahannock River in Fredericksburg
Fredericksburg area residents and recreational river users are asked to be alert for additional construction activity starting this week along the Rappahannock River at the Interstate 95 bridges in Fredericksburg.
Construction crews, equipment and work zone deliveries will increase near the I-95 bridges. Construction traffic will also intensify along roads leading to the work zone, including on Wicklow Drive and Quarry Road. Construction traffic will strictly adhere to the posted 25 mph speed limit in this residential area.
Bridge construction is part of the I-95 Southbound Rappahannock River Crossing project. The Virginia Department of Transportation and its contractor Wagman Heavy Civil, Inc., are building a new bridge over the Rappahannock River to carry three new southbound lanes of I-95. Construction of the $132 million project began in August 2018 and will be finished in May 2022.
Recreational Path Access and Safety
Access to walking, hiking and bicycling paths along the Rappahannock River in Fredericksburg will remain open during the project.
Advisory signs are posted to warn recreational path users that they are entering a work zone. Safety fencing is installed protect pedestrian and bicyclists from adjacent construction crews, equipment and materials. Users should follow the designated path near the I-95 bridges to safely avoid the work zone.
Rappahannock River Traffic
Rappahannock River traffic will have access to pass beneath the I-95 bridges during the majority of the construction project.
River signs, buoys and a rope guide provide direction for river traffic approaching the work zone to pass through the open channel underneath the bridges.
For several brief periods, expected to last no more than several weeks at a time, river traffic will be required to use a portage to pass beneath the I-95 bridges. Portage periods have been scheduled to occur during off-peak seasons for river traffic. The first portage is estimated to occur in late fall 2019.
River users can check the project’s construction status to see if a portage is in place before starting a trip on the project’s river access page.
Signs have also been installed at several boat launch locations north of the work zone to alert river users of the work zone channel. These signs will be updated when a portage is in place.
The I-95 Southbound Rappahannock River Crossing project seeks to reduce I-95 congestion in the Fredericksburg area by providing local traffic with additional lanes between the Route 17 and Route 3 interchange, and avoid merging into the interstate’s general purpose lanes.
Three new general purpose lanes for I-95 southbound will be built over six miles in the current median of I-95. The new lanes will begin in the vicinity of Truslow Road, just north of Exit 133 at Route 17 in Stafford County and end 1.2 miles south of Exit 130 at Route 3 in Spotsylvania County. The three existing I-95 southbound lanes will be converted to carry motorists traveling to the Route 17 and Route 3 interchanges and the Safety Rest Area and Virginia Welcome Center. Two I-95 overpasses of Route 17 are also being replaced.
For more information on the project, please visit Improve95.org