Have you ever driven along the construction areas along Highway 7 and wondered why there’s a lane closure beside you? Especially when it looks like there’s not much obvious construction?
Here are some of the reasons a seemingly quiet lane may be closed – and what might be happening nearby.
Work is happening
Widening the road and building the new rapidways can only be done when traffic is moved away, which is why the number one reason for any lane closure is that work is happening within it. Our project is complicated because we are building in the middle of live traffic lanes, so extra precautions are necessary and legislated. Lane closures are required only when there are no other reasonable options.
Space = safety
Typically, we need to close a lane to add a safety buffer around a work area in order to keep crews safe, and to make space for pedestrian detours around the work zone. Construction in a busy thoroughfare means that we need to ensure the safety and convenience of everyone, which means drivers, pedestrians, businesses along the corridor and work crews.
For certain types of work, sometimes very large machines are required. For example, a crane might need extra space around it so crews can access it safely. In some cases, the machine itself needs to be transported on an even larger vehicle, such as a crane being moved on a flatbed. When such a “wide load” is being transported, or positioned for a long period of time, we’d require an additional lane.
Setting up for an operation
To prepare for larger construction operations like paving an intersection, we would need to reduce lanes in advance of the actual paving so crews can set up the work area safely. This can mean reducing the number of lanes gradually in advance of the upcoming work area. This means lots of pillions!
Consistency helps with safety
If a large number of trucks need to drive back and forth along a lane closure [perhaps to take away excavated materials] over several weeks or months, a lane may be closed for the duration so the number of traffic lanes don’t need to fluctuate back and forth between 3 lanes, 2 lanes, 1 lane as frequently, which can be confusing to drivers. Having consistency is safer.
General reasons for lane closures
In general, there are three reasons lane closures during construction:
- To provide room for trucks.
- To give space for unloading and loading.
- To give work crews a safely buffer from traffic.
Do you have any questions or comments about what’s happening in lane closures? Comment below or email us at email@example.com. To stay up-to-date on construction, sign up for email updates at vivanext.com/subscribe.