Thursday, September 7

Two major closures this weekend

We've got TWO major closures scheduled for this weekend. These posts typically publish much sooner - our apologies for the delay. We'll get into why in a moment. First, the closures:

I-10 at Fair Oaks Parkway
Starting Friday (8 September) at 9 p.m. all main lanes of I-10 will close at Fair Oaks Parkway while RELMCo, Inc., demolishes the old Fair Oaks Parkway overpass bridge. We'll have everything opened up by 5 a.m. Monday (11 September).
This closure will follow the same structure we've used in previous closures, with one-way traffic through the intersection and cross traffic on the bridge shut down. While we've been able to keep traffic moving pretty well during these closures drivers should still expect delays. The biggest impacts, as the last few runs of this closure, will be on those using Fair Oaks Parkway or Tarpon Drive - if that's where you will be driving you may want to find some alternate routes.
Some bridge support structures for the new Fair Oaks Pkwy
overpass have already been built.
Previous closures finished fairly quickly - way ahead of projected schedules. Do not expect that this weekend. Bridge demolition requires quite a bit of work taking a lot of extra time. We have to protect the road surface under the bridge we're tearing out, which is usually done by dumping piles of dirt or sand to form a bed. After the bridge is cut and broken apart the chunks of steel and concrete to a disposal site. Once the old bridge is completely cleared away the dirt cushion will scooped up and swept to return the main lanes of I-10 to action.
If that sounds like it's really involved, well, it is.
With the old bridge out of the way RELMCo will continue to build up the support structure for the new bridge, which will connect Tarpon Drive and Fair Oaks Parkway directly. Some of those supports are already in place.
The next major closure of I-10 at this location will come when RELMCo is ready to set bridge beams across the highway. That, too, will require a weekend for work; we'll have it posted when scheduled.

I-35 at New Braunfels Avenue
Starting Friday (8 September) at 9 p.m. all main lanes of I-35 will close at New Braunfels Avenue near Fort Sam Houston while CRG demolishes the old New Braunfels Avenue overpass bridge. We'll have everything opened up by 5 a.m. Monday (11 September). We had this closure planned for August but were forced to postpone work for a number of reasons.
This is a closure we've done in the past - the last time we interrupted work to accommodate traffic to the AT&T Center during the San Antonio Spurs' playoff run - and it's gone fairly well. To be clear: this one will hang up traffic quite a bit. I-35 is one of the most-traveled roads in all San Antonio with more than 170,000 daily trips through this corridor on average. We'll have cross traffic at New Braunfels Avenue closed as we've done in the past. We'll have the same detours in place, with traffic crossing I-35 being pushed to Walters Street to reach its destination.
Like the demolition of the Fair Oaks Parkway bridge, this closure should last the entire weekend. CRG will lay down a dirt bed before breaking apart the old bridge. Once the scraps are hauled out and the dirt bed is swept up and cleaned traffic will be running again as normal.
The big difference at this location is what traffic will do when things are finished Monday morning. Traffic at Fair Oaks Parkway is already using a temporary solution of the turnaround bridge as a normal bridge. At New Braunfels Avenue traffic will be shifted onto the new bridge half that's being finished up over the weekend.
Like the I-10 work, we should still have a few full closures ahead to set bridge beams, deck panels and to pour concrete. Most of those (at least not setting bridge beams) will be done overnight when needed. Those will be posted in our weekly closures report.

Why not post sooner?
Both closures had been planned for August. We even got to do the first of what was to be consecutive weekends with closures on I-10. Both closures were postponed for a few reasons, then got pushed again when Texas was hit by Hurricane Harvey. There was potential of pushing these closures again due to traffic issues associated with Harvey relief efforts, but traffic volumes have begun to decrease for that work and our administrative team agreed the time to move forward with our projects has come.
That decision was made today - we didn't want to post again on these closures with the chance they'd be pushed back. Again.