FYI if You Use the Innerbelt Freeway to Get to Work

FYI…Just received the following in an email update:

Traffic Advisory
OHIO DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
District 12 · 5500 Transportation Blvd., Garfield Hts., OH 44125
216.581.2100

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Innerbelt lane closures ensure reliability for Northeast Ohio motorists
Cleveland

September 30, 2008, Garfield Heights, OH…As part of a continuing effort to better understand the effects of age and deterioration on the Interstate 90 Innerbelt Bridge, crews from the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) have closed one lane of traffic in each direction – as well as the Ontario Street entrance ramp to I-90 westbound – to allow for new detailed inspections of the 50-year-old structure.

Previous inspections of the Innerbelt Bridge have shown that the steel members are aging faster than expected. A new inspection report, due in the coming weeks, will include a 3-dimensional analysis of the structure. In addition, ODOT bridge inspectors are using an ultrasonic thickness gauge to determine how much strength the steel has lost due to deterioration.

“We must take this opportunity to continue the inspection process, conceptualize necessary repairs and truly understand the dynamic of the Innerbelt Bridge,” said ODOT Director James G. Beasley, P.E., P.S. “Our goal is to maintain the reliability of the structure into the foreseeable future.”

ODOT will continue working with the City of Cleveland and local law enforcement to designate alternate routes and to encourage travelers to utilize the services of the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (RTA) in order to reduce congestion. Suggested alternate routes follow:

Suggested alternate routes from the east:
I-77 southbound to I-490 westbound
State Route 2 (Cleveland Memorial Shoreway) westbound
I-271 southbound to I-480 west to State Route 176 (Jennings Freeway) north

Suggested alternate routes from the west:
I-490 eastbound to I-77 northbound
State Route 2 (Cleveland Memorial Shoreway) eastbound
State Route 176 (Jennings Freeway) south to I-480 eastbound to I-271 north
W. 25th Street to the Lorain-Carnegie Bridge
W. 25th Street to the Detroit-Superior Bridge

In December, ODOT announced a $140 million major rehabilitation and preservation project to address the bridge deck, a deficient drainage system and supporting members for the outside lanes. ODOT continues to work with its Innerbelt partners on building consensus for the overall $1.1 billion Innerbelt Modernization Plan.

Over 119,000 vehicles use the bridge every day.

Other alt routes I recommend include driving down through the Flats to get into downtown.    There are several routes through the flats/valley that you can take to get into and out of downtown Cleveland without dealing with the Innerbelt traffic, particularly if you are a west-sider.

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