Road construction in Charlottesville is going to make getting around downtown a little more difficult beginning Monday.
City officials say pedestrians and drivers will face a variety of impediments as construction crews place new girders in the Belmont Bridge, as part of the renovation and reconstruction of the span.
Water Street will be reduced to one traffic lane under the bridge and traffic will be directed by flagmen. Some stops could hold up traffic for as long as 15 minutes at a time while the last four girders are placed on the new eastern bridge.
All pedestrian traffic under the bridge will be rerouted through the existing pedestrian tunnel to the Ting Pavilion to the Downtown Mall. From the opposite direction, pedestrians will be directed up the ramp or staircase west of the Transit Center to the existing pedestrian tunnel.
Getting there will likely be difficult on Tuesday as well. The existing pedestrian tunnel to the Downtown Mall via the Ting Pavilion on Water Street will be closed until late September 2022.
Walkers will detour along the southern sidewalk on Water Street to the existing crosswalk at the Downtown Transit Station.
A ramp and staircase are located west of the Downtown Transit Station which connects to the Downtown Mall. The existing pedestrian tunnel is being extended to the east and an underground stormwater detention system is being rebuilt on Water Street.
Vehicular traffic at the bridge on Water Street will be controlled by flagmen and both traffic and pedestrians could face 15-minute waiting intervals as construction vehicles enter and leave the work zone.
The northern sidewalk east of the bridge on Water Street is also closed and pedestrians are being directed to the southern sidewalk at existing crosswalks.
But that’s not all. Vehicular traffic will be flagged during the day on Old Avon, East South Street and Graves Street as crews install new stormwater pipe, sanitary sewer lines and accommodate bridge construction.
East South Street will be closed to through traffic and will be one-way westbound to accommodate access to/from local businesses. The temporary parking lot entrance has moved from its location on East South Street to Old Avon while a new storm sewer line is installed.
Monticello Road will be closed to through traffic between Graves Street and Old Avon Street to build a permanent retaining wall. Flagmen will likely control traffic on Monticello Road.
To accommodate utility work, segments of sidewalks and crosswalks will also be closed as work progresses but no street will have both sides of the sidewalk closed at the same time.
The eastern sidewalk along 9th/Avon Street will be closed between Levy Avenue and Graves Street during work hours. The western crosswalk across Graves Street will be closed with pedestrians directed to the other, open crosswalks at the mid-block crossing at Graves and the 9th/Avon/Levy/Garrett signalized intersection.
Utility work will also be conducted in the right northbound travel lane on 9th/Avon Street between Levy Avenue and Graves Street. This lane has been blocked off with barrels to direct vehicles to the one northbound lane over the railroad.
The southern sidewalk along Old Avon Street is closed between Monticello Road and where it terminates near East South Street.
Pedestrian access will be maintained throughout the project area and access to private parcels will be accommodated.