By Candus Thomson, The Baltimore Sun
8:49 PM EST, December 29, 2011
The first phase of a $14.5 million project by the Maryland Transportation Authority to replace the decks of the Baltimore Beltway drawbridge over Curtis Creek will begin next week, reducing travel lanes and creating new traffic patterns.
On Tuesday, crews will shut down the eastbound outer loop of Interstate 695 between Quarantine Road (Exit 1) and Route 10 at 8 p.m. so they can place a barrier wall between the two lanes to allow two-way traffic. On Jan. 7, the inner loop will be closed down. The speed limit will be reduced from 55 mph to 45 mph.
After an anticipated 10-week construction period, crews will shut down the outer loop and traffic will be redirected onto the rebuilt inner loop for 10 weeks.
The project will entail replacing the steel grid deck, the supporting structure and some mechanical components. Work is expected to conclude in May and is being paid for with toll revenue.
The inner loop bridge opened in 1977, coinciding with the opening of the Key Bridge. The outer loop drawbridge opened two years later.
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