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The Virginia Department of Transportation began the Interstate 81 Auxiliary Lane Project November 20th near Staunton.
Northbound and southbound traffic on I-81 will be lowered to 60 miles per hour between mile marker 220 and 221.5.
The work-zone speed limit will remain in place for the duration of the 18 month auxiliary lane project.
Route 635 (Barterbrook Road) south of exit 221, will close next week and remain closed until completion of construction.
During bridge construction, motorists will need to follow a 13-mile detour.
The full detour route follows:
- West of the bridge (Staunton side), drivers will go west on Route 635, south on Route 11 (Greenville Avenue/Lee-Jackson Highway), south on Route 262 (Woodrow Wilson Parkway), north on I-81, east on I-64 to exit 91 (Fishersville), south on Route 285/608, and then west on Route 635 to the end of the detour.
- East of the bridge (Fishersville side), drivers will go east on Route 635, north on Route 608/285, west on I-64, south on I-81 to exit 220 (Staunton), north on Route 262 (Woodrow Wilson Parkway), north on Route 11 (Lee-Jackson Highway/Greenville Avenue), and then east on Route 635 to the end of the detour.
Once completed, an auxiliary lane on 81 will help connect the I-64 junction with exit 220.
The bridge replacement provides additional space for merging and exiting traffic.
Building a new bridge also allows for future widening of I-81 and will reduce the cost and duration of the entire full project.
The contract was originally awarded to Fairfield-Echolls of Fishersville for $7.7 million in October, earlier this year and is scheduled for completion by October of 2025.
Two additional travel lanes will be constructed on Route 262 (Woodrow Wilson Parkway) in Augusta County near Staunton starting Monday, August 14.
The project will provide Route 262 motorists with two northbound lanes and two southbound lanes between the interchanges with Route 613 (Old Greenville Road) and Route 252 (Middlebrook Avenue).
Contractors will build two new northbound lanes parallel to the existing road, which currently has a single lane in each direction between Route 613 and Route 252.
When construction is complete, northbound traffic will utilize the new lanes and southbound traffic will use both existing lanes.
During stages of construction, northbound and southbound motorists should be alert for traffic-lane shifts and occasional single-lane closures.
The Virginia Department of Transportation will share details of those traffic restrictions as they become available.
The project has a contract completion date of May 24, 2024.
All work is weather permitting.
or more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.
Governor Glenn Youngkin announced recently that four Industrial Revitalization Grants will be distributed through the Commonwealth totaling $8,250,000.
The funds will provide gap financing to projects aligned with local and regional economic development strategies in Staunton, Abingdon, Bluefield and Cape Charles.
The four awarded projects will create over 123 job and leverage another $20 million in public and private investment.
The program targets vacant, nonresidential structures whose poor condition negatively affects the surrounding area.
Staunton’s Arcadia Project will receive $1.5 million in available funding to preserve and adapt the historic theater on E. Beverly Street into a mixed use, state of the art cultural center.
To read the Governor’s release, click here.
On June 1st, the Augusta County Sheriff’s Office responded to a call of a domestic dispute involving knives and a possible firearm.
The call came in just before 3 PM on the 800 block of Todd Road Mount Sidney.
Upon arrival authorities found a female with a knife had barricaded herself in the bedroom.
After demands to come out were ignored the woman began to stab at authorities through the door.
Negotiators and SWAT were called in to resolve the situation to no avail.
The SWAT team had to force their way into the room and take the women into custody.
Jennifer Amber West, 44 of Mount Sidney, faces charges of obstruction of justice and was served with outstanding warrants from several other jurisdictions.
West also faces contempt of court charges.
During the investigation a male resident of the home was also taken into custody on outstanding charges.
Michael Ray Good ,56, was arrested for contempt of court in the City of Staunton.
Good was released on a personal recognizance bond.
West remains incarcerated and has not cooperated with authorities.