A contract has been awarded to improve the Elm Avenue interchange in downtown Roanoke. The work is set to begin in the middle of next year and take about two years to complete. Workers will add more exit lanes off Interstate 581 and US 220 and and widen the Elm Avenue bridge. The project will cost $20.4 million.

Click here to see a VDOT’s preliminary project plan.

(Continue reading for the full news release.)

Contract Awarded for Interstate 581/Elm Avenue Interchange Improvements in Roanoke

 RICHMOND – Governor Bob McDonnell announced today that the Commonwealth Transportation Board (CTB) has awarded a $20.4 million design-build contract to American Infrastructure – VA Inc. of Glen Allen to improve the interchange at Interstate 581/Route 220 Expressway and Elm Avenue in Roanoke.

The design-build contractor will complete final design, acquire right of way and construct the project. Construction is expected to be underway by mid-2013 with work completed in summer 2015. Funding for the project was identified through Governor McDonnell’s historic transportation package and programmed into the Six-Year Improvement Program by the CTB as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

“This project may be located in the heart of Roanoke, but it is on Virginia’s most heavily travelled road west of Richmond, and these mobility and accessibility improvements will benefit the entire region,” said Governor Bob McDonnell.

The purpose of this project is to improve traffic flow along I-581 and Elm Avenue by reducing congestion at the interchange. This will be accomplished by adding one lane to both off ramps from I-581 and extending the left turn lane in each direction on Elm Avenue. In addition, two Elm Avenue bridges will be widened: the bridge over I-581 and the bridge over the Norfolk and Southern Railroad tracks. The vertical clearance on the bridge over I-581 will be increased from 14 feet to 16.5 feet. A right turn lane also will be added from Elm Avenue onto Williamson Road.

“As a result of Virginia’s continued commitment to transportation, the CTB is prioritizing critical projects like this one that will improve safety, alleviate congestion and foster economic vitality,” said Transportation Secretary Sean T. Connaughton.