Commuters who use Cedar Ln. to cross Rock Creek on the ride to and from NIH are in for difficulties this summer as the bridge over the creek is closed for repairs from June 17 to Aug. 24.
The county chose that window of time to coincide with school vacations and to precede implementation of Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) project changes at the National Naval Medical Center.
The county department of transportation determined several years ago that the bridge, originally built in 1959 and which carries more than 12,500 vehicles daily (and a projected 15,500 vehicles daily once BRAC gets under way at Navy), is structurally deficient. The bridge superstructure will be entirely replaced over a 10-month construction schedule.
There will be a temporary pedestrian bridge across Rock Creek during bridge reconstruction. The work will close Cedar Ln. between Beach Dr. and Parkhill Ave. (which has east and west segments).
The new bridge will feature only a single southbound lane; the current sidewalk under the Beltway will widen to become a 12’ 8”-wide shared-use path for about 500 feet between Rock Creek Trail and Elmhirst Trail. “
The short length of the single lane, coupled with the fact that only two lanes (one each way) exist just north of the bridge, supports the decision” to build the widened shared-use path, according to the county DOT.
When the school year ends, a detour route will carry commuters around the project, using Strathmore Ln. and Rockville Pike as an alternative route.
For updates on the project, visit www.dpwt.com.