Route 404 work ex­pected to con­tinue through sum­mer

Times-Record - - News - By ABBY AN­DREWS aan­drews@car­o­line­times­record.com

FED­ER­ALS­BURG — As work to du­al­ize state Route 404 is set to con­tinue through the up­com­ing sum­mer, the Mary­land State High­way As­so­ci­a­tion is talk­ing to lo­cal towns about al­ter­nate routes it may sug­gest for beach-bound traf­fic.

Bob Rager, SHA district li­ai­son, vis­ited the Fed­er­als­burg mayor and coun­cil’s meet­ing Mon­day, April 3, to get their opin­ion on a pos­si­bil­ity in in­creased traf­fic this sum­mer.

“We’re try­ing to fig­ure out where to tell peo­ple to go (to avoid Route 404),” said Rager.

Town of­fi­cials said they saw no prob­lem in en­cour­ag­ing driv­ers to use state Route 318 around Fed­er­als­burg, though they did not ex­pect it to be much of a boon for town busi­nesses, as most driv­ers prob­a­bly will stick to the by­pass.

“McDon­ald’s might get more traf­fic, since they can see it from the high­way, but that’s about it,” said Coun­cil­man David Morean.

Rager said SHA typ­i­cally would avoid road work on Route 404 dur­ing the busy sum­mer sea­son, as so many peo­ple use it to get to the beach, but the goal to fin­ish du­al­iz­ing the last re­main­ing 9.2 miles be­tween U.S. Route 50 and Den­ton by Thanks­giv­ing will make this year unique.

Start­ing Me­mo­rial Day week­end, crews will not work week­ends, Rager said, but they will work around the clock dur­ing the week, mean­ing driv­ers will en­counter lane clo­sures dur­ing the off-peak travel hours SHA usu­ally en­cour­ages peo­ple to travel.

As a re­sult, SHA is work­ing on sug­gested al­ter­nate routes and will roll out a cam­paign to raise aware­ness of those routes be­fore Me­mo­rial Day, Rager said.

Rager also up­dated the mayor and coun­cil on the other ma­jor road project af­fect­ing Caro­line County, the Dover Bridge re­place­ment.

Right now, work is paused for the last of four sched­uled pe­ri­ods to let dirt set­tle, Rager said.

That is set to end in Au­gust, when crews will start pump­ing con­crete to build the last sec­tion of deck on the Caro­line County side, Rager said. Driv­ers can ex­pect another few weeks of reg­u­lar lane clo­sures when that work starts.

The project as a whole is far ahead of the orig­i­nal sched­ule, Rager said, mostly be­cause the ground is set­tling quicker than ex­pected. At this point, Rager said, en­gi­neers think the new bridge should be open to traf­fic in early 2018.

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