The Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) is reminding motorists about the new traffic pattern on I-95 South at Exit 21 (Atwells Avenue), which opened this morning. Tomorrow is the first time weekday commuter traffic will experience the changes, which includes a divided highway configuration.
Motorists will have two through lanes for I-95 South to the left of the split on the old Viaduct and one through lane to the right on the new bridge. It is important to remember that three through lanes will remain for I-95 South traffic. Overhead signs will indicate this. And Exit 21 will still be accessible in the far right lane.
The work is part of the ongoing Providence Viaduct Replacement Project, and is the first phase in a series of three traffic pattern changes needed to safely transition all travel lanes on I-95 South to the new bridge.
Ultimately, this work will transition all travel lanes on I-95 South to the new bridge, which is being built adjacent to the old bridge. Again, RIDOT will maintain three through lanes for I-95 South.
The Department will use pavement striping, traffic signs, and concrete barriers, to implement these changes. The approximate schedule of these phases include:
• Phase 1: Installed Sunday, October 23, with two through lanes to the left on the old bridge and one through lane to the right on the new bridge. Traffic taking Exit 21 can use the far right lane (which is an exit-only lane for Atwells Avenue).
• Phase 2: Approximately one week later, there will be one through lane to the left on the old bridge and two through lanes to the right on the new bridge. Again, traffic taking Exit 21 will have access to the far right lane (which is an exit-only lane for Atwells Avenue).
• Phase 3: In mid-November there will be no traffic splits, with all three lanes open on the new bridge and one exit-only lane designated for Exit 21.
RIDOT encourages all motorists to reduce their speed and drive safely through all work zones. All schedules are weather-dependent and subject to change. RIDOT will continue to provide frequent updates on these traffic pattern changes – visit www.ridot.net for the most current information.
Contact: Charles St. Martin 401-222-1362 x4007 401-641-8934