Hampton testing new lane dividers to control I-64 backups downtown

Hampton

HAMPTON, Va. (WAVY) — City officials are looking for ways to curb the impact of Interstate 64 backups in downtown Hampton.

The city issued a news release Monday that said traffic cones have been installed as lane dividers on Settlers Landing Road in an effort keep drivers heading to I-64 from blocking all traffic.

Officials said in the release standstills on both lanes of the Settlers Landing Road bridge make it difficult for first responders to get through since there is no shoulder.

The city said traffic in the area has worsened — and it is believed much of the congestion is not being caused by people who live in or around the downtown area.

Officials said drivers sitting in backed-up interstate traffic try to skip ahead by taking other routes before merging onto the highway.

As a test, cone dividers will be placed beginning at the foot of the bridge just after the Eaton Street intersection — meaning drivers will be unable to switch lanes past that point.

It also means the right-hand lane will be the only way to get from downtown Hampton to I-64 East, Hampton University, the Veterans Affairs Medical Center, the Harbor Apartments and the Harbor Shopping Center.

The city said it will seek feedback following a two-week testing period. Poles will be installed if this measure is deemed a success.

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