I-26 lane closings to begin
BY WARREN WISE
Motorists will see nighttime lane closures and a lot of orange drums starting Monday on Interstate 26 as the three-year road-widening project begins in earnest.
The lane closures from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. will be between Ashley Phosphate Road and the Midland Park overpass as the shoulder is paved with new asphalt, said project manager Gary Stroble of U.S. Group Inc., the principal contractor for the $66 million project.
In addition, orange drums will be placed along the freeway near Remount Road as work begins on adding entrance and exit ramps in all directions at the interchange. Concrete barriers will be added in the area by the end of the week, Stroble added.
"There will be no new traffic patterns during the day next week," he said.
The lane closures will run through Thursday, but other closures are expected in phases during the next three years.
Construction crews already have bulldozed trees around Remount Road and near Aviation Avenue to make way for modifications to the interchanges at those two exits.
Work will be concentrated in the Remount Road area first before moving to Aviation Avenue, where two of the loops on the cloverleaf will disappear and new on and off ramps will be constructed. New collector lanes similar to those on I-26 at Ashley Phosphate Road also will be added.
I-26 will be widened to eight lanes over the three-mile stretch between the Mark Clark Expressway and Ashley Phosphate Road.
Motorists encounter a huge bottleneck in that area during rush-hour traffic. The widening is expected to bring relief and make it safer at interchanges.
"We want everybody to be safe and adhere to the construction signs," Stroble said. "Enforcement agencies will be out there."