Busy section of U.S. 281, downtown streets will close to drivers today.
Traffic to be diverted as slew of closures will impact the area
A convergence of an “unusually high number of special events” and work on a major expansion project will have drivers searching for alternate routes Saturday.
Texas Department of Transportation is warning drivers that starting this weekend, all southbound lanes of U.S. 281 between Encino Rio and Sonterra Boulevard will shut down as part of the U.S. 281 expansion project. Drivers will be diverted onto the frontage road, which has the same number of lanes as the highway.
There is not set completion date, but officials expect the closure to last for several months.
And in about two weeks, the northbound lane closures are going to be closed down, according to the department.
The construction is part of a massive five-year, $500 million expansion of U.S. 281 from Loop 1604 north to the Comal County line. The first phase, which goes to Stone Oak, is scheduled to be done in 2020, while the second might not be completed until 2022.
Downtown drivers will be dealing with multiple road closures — but only for a day.
Four special events happening on the same day are behind Saturday’s closures, according to the San Antonio Transportation and Capital Improvements Department.
Red Bull’s “Last Stand” bicycle race accounts for the longest closure. The streets surrounding the Alamo, which serves as a backdrop for the race, will be closed through 3 a.m. Sunday. The Alamo will maintain normal operating hours, according to the event website.
Artpace’s annual “Chalk It Up” will close Houston from North Flores to North St. Mary’s as well as North Main between Houston and Savings until 6 p.m. Saturday night. The intersections along Main, including Travis, Pecan and Martin, will remain open during the event. The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s annual “Light the Night” procession will close several downtown streets, including East Nueva from Dwyer to South Alamo. The closures are set for 7 to 9 p.m.
The fourth event is a Texas Public Radio event at the Alameda Theater. West Houston between North Laredo and Camaron will be closed from 5 to 11 p.m.
Three other downtown-area events will not close roads, but they may add some congestion to the area: two showings of “Wicked” at the Majestic Theatre, the “Por Qué Será Las Queremos Tanto?” concert at the Aztec Theater and the UTSA homecoming football game against Louisiana Tech at the Alamodome.