VDOT News - Bristol



Michelle Earl 276-696-3283


Nov. 4, 2022

November 7-13: 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 – truck climbing lanes: The project to add a truck climbing lane to Interstate 81 northbound near mile marker 39 in Smyth County is underway. Barrier wall will be installed the week of November 7 to close the shoulder while construction is underway. Pay close attention to work zone signs. (Completion: May 2024)

Interstate 81 Exit 17: Be alert to nightly lane closures on Interstate 81 at exit 17 and on Route 75 beneath the interstate as part of the I-81 exit 17 improvement project. The exit 17 project includes improvements to the exit 17 northbound on and off ramps, improvements to a segment of Route 75, reconstruction and relocation of Gravel Lake Road, lengthening the I-81 southbound on ramp, and relocation of the frontage road located adjacent to the northbound exit 17 off ramp. The speed limit is 60mph through the work zone. (Completion: Spring 2023)

I-81 exit 54 southbound ramp extension project (Smyth County): Be alert to a lane shift along exit 54 southbound, from the on ramp to the rest area at Groseclose. The project will extend the acceleration lane to tie in with the rest area deceleration lane. (Completion: Nov. 2022)

Interstate 77 – Exit 64: Motorists should be alert to work underway to improve Interstate 77 at exit 64 in Bland County. The project includes maintenance repairs to the I-77 bridges over Route 61 and Clear Fork Creek and improvements to the exit 64 northbound and southbound ramps. (Completion: May 2023)

I-77 bridges over Cove Creek: Be alert to a project to replace the Interstate 77 bridges over Cove Creek in Wythe County, located about two miles north of Interstate 81 between mile markers 44 and 42. Motorists can expect an altered traffic pattern on southbound I-77 and periodic nighttime lane closures while work is underway. (Completion: early 2023)

***Interstates 81 and 77 maintenance activities: This week, be alert to the following lane closures due to maintenance activities:
Interstate 81
- Day and nighttime bridge repairs northbound near exit 72 in Wythe County. Be alert to a width restriction of 12-feet while the lane closure is in place November 7 – 11.
- Day and nighttime bridge repairs southbound near mile marker 38 in Smyth County. No wide loads over 14 feet when the work zone is in place November 6-10.
- Day and nighttime bridge painting northbound near exit 67 in Wythe County. There will also be day and nighttime bridge painting southbound between exit 70 and mile marker 67 in Wythe County and traffic will be restricted to one, 14-foot-wide lane both north and southbound.
- Nighttime lane closure southbound near exit 60 due to cleanup from a recent crash.
- Daytime shoulder repairs northbound near mile marker 41 in Smyth County.
- Nighttime bridge deck repairs northbound near mile marker 28 in Washington County; southbound near mile markers 16 and 25 in Washington County; northbound near mile markers 48 and 50 in Smyth County; and southbound near exit 45 in the Marion area of Smyth County.
- Nighttime pothole patching north and southbound in Wythe County.
- Daytime bridge inspection near mile marker 74 in Wythe County November 9.
Interstate 77
- Nighttime lane closures southbound at Big Walker Mountain Tunnel due to tunnel maintenance. When a lane closure is in place at the tunnel, all wide loads over 12-feet-wide must stop before entering.
- Day and nighttime lane closures southbound near mile marker 41 in Wythe County due to bridge repairs.
- Daytime mowing operations north and southbound on I-77 in Bland County.
- Nighttime pothole patching at various locations in Wythe County between mile markers 24 and 32.
- Daytime rumble strip installation southbound between mile markers 64 and 61 in Bland County.

Buchanan County
Route 460/121 Poplar Creek Phase A: Construction of Route 460/121 Poplar Creek Phase A is underway in Buchanan County. Route 604 (Poplar Creek Road) is on a temporary alignment. The Poplar Creek Phase A project created a permanent change for Route 614 (Woods Fork). Access to the north and south ends of Route 614 is via Routes 609 (Bulls Creek Road) and Route 604 (Polar Creek Road), respectively, which connect to Route 460 west of Grundy.

Dickenson County
Route 80 bridge over Russell Fork River: Due to a project to rehabilitate the Route 80 (Sandlick Road) bridge over Russell Fork River in Dickenson County, motorists can expect temporary traffic signals controlling one-way traffic across the bridge. The bridge is located near the intersection of Route 605 (Russell Fork River Road). Use caution in this area and pay close attention to signs and message boards. (Completion: late 2022/early 2023)

Scott County
Route 23 bridge over Speers Ferry: Due to work to rehabilitate the Route 23 bridge over Speers Ferry in Scott County, traffic has been shifted and crews are now working on the southbound bridge. Traffic is restricted to one, 11-foot-wide lane in each direction across the northbound bridge. Motorists are advised to use caution in this area, slow down and allow extra travel time. (Completion: July 2023)

Tazewell County
Second Street (Route 67) Bridge over Clinch River in Richlands: Due to a bridge rehabilitation and repair project on Second Street (Route 67) in Richlands, the bridge over the Clinch River is restricted to one lane. The bridge is located west of the intersection of Allegheny Street. (Completion: Nov. 2022)

Route 19: Be alert to daily delays on Route 19 near the Russell/Tazewell County line due to rolling roadblocks associated with blasting work. The work is due to establishing the intersection for Pure Salmon. (Completion: Fall 2022)

Washington County
Route 58 widening near Damascus: Due to Route 58 construction activities near Damascus, be alert to periodic delays. Virginia Creeper Trail users should be alert to the possibility of flaggers directing trail traffic. Trail users may experience periodic delays of 15-30 minutes near the bridge. (Completion: May 2024)

Wise County
Alternate Route 58 bridge rehabilitation: A project to rehabilitate the Alternate Route 58 bridge over the Guest River and Norfolk Southern Railroad in the City of Norton is underway. Use caution in this area and be alert to lane closures. (Completion: July 2023)

***Business Route 23 in Wise: A project to widen a portion of Business Route 23 in the Town of Wise between Route 23 at McDonald’s and Cherry Street is underway. Due to installation of a water line near Wise Gas, be alert to the possibility of lengthy delays Monday, November 7. Motorists traveling into the Town of Wise can avoid delays by using the Business Route 23 access to town. Pay close attention to flaggers and allow extra travel time. (Completion: early Nov. 2023)

Alternate Route 58 bridge repairs: Bridge repairs are underway on eastbound Route 58 in Wise County at the bridge over Bear Creek in the Norton area. Pay close attention to signs and watch out for workers. (Completion: Oct. 2022)

Wythe County
Route 619 (Gleaves Road) - bridge closure: Due to a recent bridge inspection, the Route 619 truss bridge over Cripple Creek in Wythe County is currently closed. No timeframe for reopening the bridge has been established to date. Pay close attention to signs and message boards in the area.

Route 619 bridge: Due to replacement of the Route 619 bridge over Interstate 81 exit 84 in Wythe County, motorists should be alert to one-lane traffic controlled by temporary traffic signals across the Route 619 bridge. Be alert to the possibility of slight delays on I-81 due to the bridge work above the interstate. (Completion: Dec. 2023)


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: Nov. 4, 2022