CHARLESTON, WV – With brighter weather expected later this week once heavy rain from Hurricane Ida passes, West Virginia Division of Highways anticipates the opening of the new traffic pattern on the Oakwood Intersection Improvement project on Corridor G in Kanawha County to occur later this week. Another press release will be issued once a new date and time are set for opening.
Before drivers can use the new traffic pattern, contractors must remove old paint lines and paint fresh lines showing the new pattern. Allowing a few extra days for brighter weather will have the advantage of allowing paint to dry correctly, and allowing drivers to familiarize themselves with the new pattern for the first time on a sunny day as well. Once the new traffic pattern is in use, the area will still be considered a work zone, with minor work to continue involving barrier walls and other finishing touches.
The $5.8 million Oakwood Intersection Improvement project adds two new R-Cut intersections to alleviate traffic congestion, ease driving times and improve safety. R-Cut stands for Restricted Crossing U-Turn.
Under the new traffic pattern, traffic coming from Oakwood will turn right and either proceed into Charleston or utilize the protected U-Turn (R-Cut) at Hickory Road to go to Corridor G. Another protected U-Turn near Lucado Road will serve traffic coming from the opposite direction. Utilizing the protected U-Turns will eliminate the traffic back-up which occurs at the intersection of Oakwood Road and Corridor G. During peak travel times and holiday seasons, this traffic backup has been significant, serving the area with a C or D level of service. The new pattern will raise the level of service to an A or B.
In addition to speeding up wait times and reducing congestion, the new pattern will also reduce potential conflict points (places where traffic converges or crosses traffic moving in a different direction), resulting in fewer traffic accidents. This efficient pattern, which has proven effective in other states, will be the first of its kind in West Virginia.