Update: Major traffic changes coming for Downtown Crossing, othe - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Update: Major traffic changes coming for Downtown Crossing, other roads

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) - Major traffic changes will soon begin on I-65 North and I-65 South in downtown Louisville.

Starting May 11, a section of I-65 will lose a lane, and the changes will go on for several months.

The construction work will take place from Witherspoon Street to Muhammad Ali Boulevard -- about a mile stretch. Construction planners say on Sunday, I-65 North will be reduced from three to two lanes in that section.

In early June, I-65 South will also lose a lane from Witherspoon to Muhammad Ali. The freed up lanes will give crews room to work.

"What's going to happen is we have crews moving into the center area there," said Downtown Crossing spokeswoman Mindy Peterson. "They're going to be working between I-65 South and I-65 North, and they're going to be building new lanes for I-65 South, and this is work that will happen for several months. So the restrictions, the changes we're talking about will be long-term -- they're going to be in place until 2015.

The change is expected to begin Sunday, May 11 and remain in place into 2015. The left lane of I-65 North is closing to allow crews to work safely between I-65 South and I-65 North, building new lanes for I-65 South.

The exit ramp from I-65 South to Jefferson St. is expected to be reduced to one lane Wednesday, May 14 to Friday, May 16.

Drivers will be able to access both Jefferson St. and Brook St. during the three-day lane reduction. The ramp is scheduled to close that weekend, closing the night of Friday, May 16. The ramp will be open by 5 a.m. Monday, May 19.

The lane restriction and closure will allow crews to complete striping and other necessary work in preparation for an upcoming traffic switch on I-65 South. I-65 South traffic will be moving to a newly constructed roadway, from Witherspoon St. to Muhammad Ali Blvd. The roadway is the new I-65 South collector-distributor, which runs parallel to I-65 South.

When the overall project is complete, the collector-distributor will allow traffic to smoothly enter and exit I-65 South. The I-65 South traffic switch is expected to happen in early June and remain in place into 2015. Traffic will be reduced from three through lanes to two through lanes from Witherspoon St. to Muhammad Ali Blvd.

In
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ombination with the lane restriction on I-65 North, moving traffic to the newly constructed roadway will allow crews to work between I-65 South and I-65 North to build new mainline lanes for I-65 South. The Downtown Crossing includes building a new I-65 bridge for northbound only traffic, revamping the Kennedy Bridge to carry southbound I-65 traffic and rebuilding interchange approaches on both sides of the river. The project is scheduled for completion in December 2016.

A section of I-265 (Gene Snyder Freeway) is also slated to be closed starting Wednesday for bridge deck repairs. The roadwork will cause the right hand lane over a mile-long stretch to be closed from mile points 23 through 24 of I-265 northbound from 6 p.m. until midnight on May 7. Road crews will also narrow the on-ramp from Taylorsville Rd. through I-265 northbound.

The Clark Memorial Bridge is expected to close in late May and remain closed for at least six weeks. During the closure, new US 31 entrance and exit ramps to and from Court Avenue will be constructed. When the bridge reopens in July, the new ramps will be in use.

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