A large Massachusetts transportation project might be completed on time. In fact, MassDOT has announced that this part of the Commonwealth Avenue Bridge Project is almost three weeks ahead of schedule.
The Massachusetts Turnpike in Boston returned to its normal four lanes of traffic in each direction on Monday at 5 a.m.
The reason the lanes have reopened early is because steel beams for the new bridge are in place and a massive crane was removed quicker than planned.
There will be periodic lane reductions on the Turnpike, but MassDOT says that will happen when the highway is typically less busy.
The schedule for completing the remaining construction work and the other travel impacts remain unchanged; crews are allegedly on schedule, and service impacts to the MBTA’s Green Line B-Branch and bus routes are expected to continue through Monday, Aug. 14.
“MassDOT’s engineering and construction staff have been working closely with the contractor throughout this project and we collaboratively modified the sequencing of key work to create opportunities for removing the 440-ton crane on the Pike more efficiently than originally planned,” said Acting Highway Administrator Jonathan Gulliver. “This change will lead to the return of I-90 to full capacity, which is four lanes in each direction, almost three weeks earlier than previously scheduled,” he said. Lane reductions began on July 7 for the Commonwealth Avenue Bridge Project.
Until 5 a.m., MassDOT released the following travel information
• Until 5 a.m., Monday, Aug. 7: One lane of travel open westbound, 2 lanes open eastbound, with occasional eastbound lane reductions if necessary in off-peak hours.
• After 5 a.m., Monday, Aug. 7: All four lanes of travel open in each direction.
• Until 5 a.m., Monday, Aug. 7: Exit 20 is closed for drivers seeking to exit I-90 west in Allston; these are drivers going to Storrow Drive/Cambridge Street.
• After 5 a.m., Monday, Aug. 7: There will be periodic, off-peak lane reductions on I-90 for short-term durations as needed during construction operations.
The MBTA Worcester/Framingham Commuter Rail Line will also run normal service and Amtrak’s Lake Shore Limited trains will operate on a normal weekday schedule on Monday.
For riders of the local MBTA, the nightmare continues. The Green B Line in the area of the Commonwealth Avenue Bridge has been replaced with shuttle buses between Babcock Street and Blandford Street Stations until 5:00 a.m., August 14. MBTA Bus Routes CT2 and 47 are detoured from the normal routes until 5:00 a.m., on August 14. You can read more suggestions for alternative routes and traffic restrictions on the MBTA project site.