HOUSTON – Drivers and small business owners are bracing for the impact of a major construction closure that starts Friday.
All I-610 West Loop northbound and southbound lanes at I-69 will be closed.
When will the closures take place?
Construction closures will start Friday at 9 p.m. and continue through Monday at 5 a.m. on the following weekend dates:
Friday, January 31 at 9 p.m. until Monday, February 3 at 5 a.m. February 7 through February 10, February 14 through February 17, February 21 through and February 24.
How do I get around it?
Motorists traveling northbound on I-610 West Loop northbound will detour to I-610 frontage road to re-enter the mainlanes of I-610 northbound. Motorists traveling southbound on I-610 West Loop will detour to I-69 southbound, exit at Chimney Rock, U-turn at Chimney Rock to reach the I-69 northbound mainlanes, and take the direct connector from I-69 northbound to I-610 southbound.
Small business owners in the area said construction in the area was already having a negative impact and worried this latest round would make things worse.
"It's killing our business. It's making things really slow around here it's hard to get back and forth to work it's really bad," said Gene Graham, manager of Memorial Car Care.
Why are the closures necessary?
Crews will hang bridge beams and other related work for a new connector ramp.
"To do that safely we cannot moving underneath the mainlanes," said Texas Department of Transportation spokesman Danny Perez.
Perez said it is Phase 3 of a project that began in September 2017 and should be completed in 2024.
The $259 million project will significantly enhance safety and improve mobility by widening the connector ramps to two lanes, increasing sight distances, and providing remedies to eliminate weaving, according to the agency.