I-81 Interchange Project Progressing Ahead of Schedule
9 March 2017 News
The original completion date is May 2018, but the Virginia Department of Transportation estimates a summer 2017 completion for the Interstate 81 Exit 310 interchange project in Frederick County. Work began in early spring 2015 when General Excavation Inc. (GEI) of Warrenton, Va. was awarded a construction contract valued at nearly $25 million.
The project design uses a “spread-diamond” interchange configuration, which spreads the ramps outward and widens them with dual left- and right-turn lanes.
Traffic signal timing on Route 37 at both I-81 northbound and southbound will not be finalized until all ramp construction is complete, since all the signals must work together.
On the west side of the interchange, the former ramp from Route 37 to Route 11 northbound was removed to allow for the construction of the I-81 southbound spread-diamond ramps. The existing loop ramp from westbound Route 37 to Route 11 has been widened to allow dual left-turn lanes onto northbound Route 11. A new signal has been installed at the Route 37 exit ramp and Route 11. The southbound I-81 acceleration and deceleration ramps are currently under construction.
Major construction activity on the east side of the interchange is complete with the relocation of the Route 642 (Tasker Road) and Route 847 (Hillandale Lane) intersection with Route 37 and the construction of the I-81 northbound acceleration and deceleration ramps.
Turn lane construction on Route 37 eastbound at the I-81 northbound ramps is not complete. Currently there is only one left-turn lane on Route 37 eastbound onto I-81 northbound. When the work is finished, there will be two left-turn lanes on Route 37 eastbound on to I-81 northbound, doubling the left-turn capacity. Once asphalt plants reopen for the spring, final asphalt can be applied and the intersection will be restriped to create the second left-turn lane.
Upon project completion, dual turn lanes will be at the following locations:
- I-81 northbound deceleration ramp onto Route 37 westbound, dual left-turn lanes.
- I-81 southbound deceleration ramp onto Route 37 westbound, dual right-turn lanes.
- I-81 southbound deceleration ramp onto Route 37 eastbound, dual left-turn lanes.
- Route 37 westbound onto I-81 southbound acceleration ramp, dual left-turn lanes.
- Route 37 westbound onto Route 11 northbound, dual left-turn lanes.
- Route 37 eastbound onto I-81 northbound acceleration ramp, dual left-turn lanes.
The I-81 exit 310 project is designed to alleviate I-81 mainline traffic backups from the exit ramps. Additional information about this project including maps, diagrams and photographs can be found at http://www.virginiadot.org/projects/staunton/i-81_exit_310.asp.