By Carla Branch
After some delays due to a disagreement between Potomac Yard Development and Dominion Virginia Power, the Monroe Avenue Bridge project is back on track and slated for completion in July.
Both spans of the new bridge are open; Howell Ave. is once again a through street; motorists can turn left from the bridge onto Slaters Lane. However, there is still no access to Route 1 from Monroe Ave., a situation that has Del Ray residents and other Alexandria commuters annoyed. “First, the bridge was supposed to be finished in January, then, March, then April and now July. Residents are beginning not to believe us so we need to keep people informed about what is happening and give them up-to-date timelines,” said Councilman Rob Krupicka.
Emily Baker, acting director of Transportation and Environmental Services, briefed the Alexandria City Council on the status of the project at this week’s City Council legislative meeting. “There was a disagreement between the developer and Dominion Virginia Power that was finally resolved late last year,” Baker said. “That got the project back on track but delayed the completion of the Monroe Ave. access.
“Dominion has finished their work and the Water Company will finish laying pipes some time next week. After that, Shirley Contracting can finish the road work that they have to do. That should take around three months. They are telling us that everything will be finished by early to mid July,” Baker said.
Potomac Yard Development funded the $42 million bridge project, which included straightening Route 1 and providing a better connection between Del Ray, Northeast Alexandria and Potomac Yard.
The Monroe Ave. connection is the final phase of the 30-month project.
“It is important to remind everyone that, although we have helped to get Dominion and the developer back on track, these contractors do not work for us,” said Mayor Bill Euille. “The delays are frustrating but we can only do so much.”