I-10 to close in both directions this weekend due to major projects
Bridge crews will pull double duty along Interstate 10 in downtown Houston this weekend, in the hopes of combining closings so drivers are detoured fewer times.
Eastbound and westbound I-10 will be closed at 8 p.m. Friday, according to the Texas Department of Transportation. Eastbound lanes will be closed from Shepherd to Interstate 69, while westbound lanes will be closed from I-69 to Interstate 45. Detours will send drivers through downtown to I-45 and then back to I-10 westbound, while eastbound I-10 traffic is recommended to use Loop 610 to avoid the area entirely.
Westbound lanes are scheduled to reopen by 5 p.m. Saturday, but the eastbound lanes are not expected to reopen until 5 a.m. Monday.
The closings, which cover a much larger area than typical, are so TxDOT can advance two separate construction projects which would have led to closing the freeway two straight weekends, said Danny Perez, a spokesman for TxDOT in Houston. Crews are rebuilding the Elysian Viaduct that crosses Buffalo Bayou and I-10 in to downtown, while another project is repairing the Houston Avenue bridge across I-10 west of downtown.
“The Elysian work needed both sides (of the freeway), so instead of having back-to-back weekends, we combined,” Perez said.
Though traffic on weekends has returned compared to earlier declines during COVID, the number of vehicles remains about 10 percent below common levels on Saturdays and Sundays, according to Houston TranStar. Still, TxDOT officials are warning drivers to expect significant delays as a result of the freeway closings, and possibly seek alternative routes.