National Park Service officials have announced that multiple road projects on the Blue Ridge Parkway near Roanoke are scheduled to be complete in the coming months. Specifically, the rehabilitation of the Roanoke River Bridge, at Milepost 114.7, is expected to be finished in June; and repairs needed to stabilize slope failures near mileposts 119.7 and 127.9 are expected to conclude by the end of September.
While work is underway and until repairs are complete, current, signed detour routes will remain in place. The detour route around both projects extends from VA Route 24 at Washington Avenue (milepost 112.2) to Adney Gap at US 221 (milepost 136.0); and access to Explore Park remains available from the south via US 220 (milepost 121.4). Behind closed gates, the Parkway is closed to all uses including motorists, cyclists, and pedestrians. The public’s cooperation with these closures helps support an efficient work schedule and the safety of staff, visitors, and the contractor.
The Roanoke River Bridge closed during the summer of 2021 for a long-scheduled, major rehabilitation project. The National Park Service and Federal Highway Administration identified this project as a priority in 2015, as part of the ongoing, multi-year road maintenance planning cycle for the Blue Ridge Parkway.
The project included concrete repairs to bridge piers, reconstruction and drainage repairs to approach areas, removal of existing asphalt surface and waterproofing membrane, installation of new waterproofing membrane and asphalt surface, and repainting of the steel super structure of the bridge.
A spring 2020 storm resulted in a full road failure roughly one hundred and fifty feet (150′) in length at Milepost 127.9. Geotechnical and roadway experts have designed and planned a series of repairs for this emergency project, including installation of soil anchors and reconstruction of the fill slope, to stabilize the area and restore safe access.
At the time of the large slide, Parkway staff discovered another smaller slope failure at milepost 119.7. Repairs needed at this location will also take place this season and be managed using single-lane traffic controls. Park visitors in this section should anticipate delays up to 15 minutes, a shifted lane alignment, warning signs, new pavement markings and a regulatory speed reduction to 35 mph.
Daily road status updates are available on the park’s website at www.nps.gov/blri.