VDOT News - Bristol



Michelle Earl 276-696-3283


Jan. 24, 2020

January 27 - February 2: Bristol's Weekly Traffic Alert

BRISTOL – In an effort to keep motorists informed, the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) provides weekly information about highway construction and maintenance projects in southwestern Virginia. When traveling through highway work zones, use caution and be alert to changes in traffic patterns and slow-moving or stopped traffic.


To help motorists take the guesswork out of travel plans, call VDOT’s 511 or visit http://www.511virginia.org for real-time traffic information.


Entries with asterisks (***) indicate the listing is new or the status of the project has changed since last week’s traffic alert.



Interstate 81 bridges at Atkins: A project to replace the Interstate 81 bridges near mile marker 52 in the Atkins area of Smyth County is underway. Be alert to lane shifts and nighttime lane closures on the interstate, as well periodic lane closures on Route 11. The speed limit in the work zone is 60 mph. (Completion: Fall 2022)


Interstate 81 bridge work at exit 19: Due to bridge work on Interstate 81 northbound at exit 19 in Abingdon (Washington County), be alert to overnight lane closures on I-81 and the possibility of daytime lane closures on Route 11 beneath the interstate bridge. Pay close attention to signs and message boards. (Completion: early March 2020)


Interstate 81 – bridges over Reed Creek: Be alert to an altered traffic pattern on Interstate 81 at the bridges over Reed Creek in Wythe County due to replacement of the bridges. The travel lanes are restricted to two, 11-foot-wide lanes with left and right shoulder closures. The bridges are located about one-mile north of the I-77 split at I-81 exit 81. Be advised the speed limit through the work zone is 60 mph, and the northbound lanes are restricted to two, 11-foot-wide travel lanes with the left and right shoulders closed. Allow extra travel time and watch out for workers. (Completion: Fall 2021)


Interstate 81 – bridges over Mulberry Lane: Due to the project to replace the Interstate 81 bridges over Route 686 (Mulberry Lane) in Smyth County near exit 50, the southbound lanes of I-81 have been moved to the newly constructed bridge portion in the median area. I-81 is restricted to two, 11-foot-wide lanes in each direction and the left and right shoulders are closed. Additionally, Mulberry Lane is closed underneath the interstate. Pay close attention to detour signs directing traffic around the closed portion of Mulberry Lane. The speed limit through the work zone is 60 mphAnticipate lane closures on I-81 during the overnight hours during construction. (Completion: Fall 2020)


***Interstates 81 and 77 maintenance activities: This week, be alert to the possibility of shoulder closures along I-81 and I-77 due to activities such as sign repairs and debris removal.



Bland County

Route 607 (Burton’s Pond Road): The Route 607 (Burton’s Pond Road) bridge over Kimberling Creek in Bland County is closed until June 10 to allow crews to replace the bridge. The bridge is located 1.5 miles from Route 606 (Wilderness Road) and 1.15 miles from Route 680 (Price Ridge Road). (Completion: June 2020)


Route 666 bridge over I-77: Due to repairs to the Route 666 bridge over I-77 at exit 58 in Bland County, one-way traffic is being controlled by temporary traffic signals. Be alert to the possibility of delays. (Completion: early 2020)



Buchanan County

***Route 460/121 Poplar Creek Phase A: A portion of Route 615 (Hoot Owl Street) in Buchanan County will be closed six months beginning this week (week of January 27). The closure will ensure safety during construction of a portion of the Route 460/121 Poplar Creek A construction project. The closure will be located on Route 615 between its intersection at Route 604 (Poplar Creek Road) and Dogpound Road. Detour routes during the closure are Routes 604 (Poplar Creek Road) and 617 (Little Prater Road), or to Vansant via Route 83 (Lovers Gap Road).

Construction of Route 460/121 Poplar Creek Phase A is underway in Buchanan County. Impacts on motorists are minimal because the majority of the work is on a new location; however, the project has created a permanent change for Route 614 (Woods Fork). Poplar Creek Phase A will split a portion of Route 614 and cul-de-sacs will be added on either end of Route 614 where it ends at the new highway, approximately 2.75 miles from Route 609 at Bull Creek and 1.25 miles from Route 604 at Poplar Creek. Access to the north and south ends of Route 614 will be via Routes 609 (Bull Creek Road) and 604 (Poplar Creek Road), respectively, which connect to Route 460 west of Grundy.

Scott County

Route 682: The Route 682 bridge over Copper Creek in Scott County is closed for replacement. Motorists should be alert to detour signs while the bridge replacement project is underway. (Completion: early 2020)


Utility Installation: Be alert to utility installation work along Route 870 (Daniel Boone Road) and connecting secondary highways near Gate City.  The project is near the quarry pond and will extend westward to Route 789 (Sarah Circle). (Completion: February 2021)


Route 600 (Fairview Road): Be alert to water installation work and lane closures on Route 600 (Fairview Road) and connecting secondary routes in Scott County. (Completion: Fall 2020)


Utility Projects – various locations: Anticipate lane closures during daylight hours due to power line installation along U.S. Route 23 between Route 600 (Fairview Road) and Route 625 (Angler’s Way). (Completion: Summer 2020)


Route 23 bridge replacement at Weber City: Due to replacement of the Route 23 bridges over North Fork Holston River in the Weber City area of Scott County, motorists can expect one-lane traffic and a 12-foot-width restriction in each direction. The speed limit in the work zone is 35 mph. (Completion: winter/spring 2020)



Smyth County

Route 658 (Tilley’s Bridge Road) bridge: Replacement of a portion of the Route 658 (Tilley’s Bridge Road) bridge over the South Fork Holston River in Smyth County is underway. Motorists should pay close attention to detour signs during the bridge project. (Completion: December 2020)



Wise County

Route 68 (Exeter Road): Delays during daylight hours are possible on Route 68 (Exeter Road) near Appalachia due to a sewer line installation project. (Completion: Summer 2020)      (END)

Information in VDOT news releases was accurate at the time the release was published. For the most current information about projects or programs, please visit the project or program Web pages. You may find those by searching by keyword in the search Virginia DOT box above.

Page last modified: Jan. 24, 2020