TRENTON — The two-and-a-half year long Route 495 Viaduct project that will close a lane through the Lincoln Tunnel will finally start in August.

The closures related to the long term project begin on Friday, August 10, when the NJ Department of Transportation shuts down the 31st Street ramp from Kennedy Boulevard to Route 495 with traffic detoured onto Patterson Plank Road.

The major closure starts on Friday, August 17 when one lane of Route 495 in each direction will close and is expected to cause severe congestion.

The DOT said additional details will be announced in August about the lane closures.

The exclusive bus lane (XBL) will remain operational during construction.

The entire bridge deck of the nine-span viaduct, parapets, light fixtures, guide rail, and drainage will be replaced during the $90.3 million project, which is expected to be done by the summer of 2021.

Construction will take place in stages, which has already started with improvements to local streets in the surrounding areas that will need to handle some of the diverted traffic during bridge construction.

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at Dan.Alexander@townsquaremedia.com or via Twitter @DanAlexanderNJ

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