Friday night, repairs begin on the Powhite Parkway James River Bridge. The downtown expressway connector leading to the Powhite will close, and it won't reopen until Monday morning.
Friday afternoon, traffic flowed smoothly on the Powhite. Crews have already staged their trucks for repairs starting at 9:00 p.m.
Drivers will want to allow for extra time for repairs…and that includes people coming into town for the NASCAR race Saturday.
There may not be checkered flags on this route, but there are signs warning drivers they'll need to take detours and slow down this weekend.
The downtown connector heading towards the Powhite Parkway will close from 9:00 Friday night to 6:00 Monday morning. Crews will resurface the James River Bridge – and five southbound lanes will close down to two. This means drivers could see more break lights than usual. Yvonne Cochran lives on the southside and takes this route just about every day, but this weekend, she's avoiding it all costs.
"That's what I plan on doing," said Cochran. "I have absolutely no intentions of going anywhere and being caught in that traffic with all of the congestion we anticipate."
If you don't avoid the area, you'll have to deal with a detour. Traffic will get off the road at Cary street, and then be re-directed back to the highway.
The closures could cause back-ups especially for people leaving the raceway Saturday night. But RMA Spokesperson Linda McElroy says delays should only be a few minutes.
"For motorists leaving the race Saturday evening, pay attention to the detours in place," said McElroy. "It may take them five to 10 minutes out of their way as they encounter traffic in Carytown but it will deposit them right back on the Powhite Parkway."
The $3.3 million project is scheduled to wrap up in May. Crews will start repairs in the north bound lanes next year.
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