The Connecticut Department of Transportation (CTDOT) is improving traffic operations along Interstate 95 in Greater New Haven. CTDOT's I-95 New Haven Harbor Crossing (NHHC) Corridor Improvement Program is a multi-modal transportation improvement program that features public transit enhancements and roadway improvements along 7.2 miles (11.5 km) of I-95, between Exit 46 (Sargent Drive) in New Haven and Exit 54 (Cedar Street) in Branford.
With improvements scheduled to be completed in 2016, minimizing construction-related traffic congestion is an important part of the I-95 NHHC Corridor Improvement Program. CTDOT is implementing a Construction Traffic Management Plan. Key components of the Plan are described below. View fact sheets on the I-95 NHHC Corridor Improvement Program, Construction Traffic Management Plan.
- Shore Line East Station Improvements. To make riding Shore Line East safer and more convenient for commuters, new rail stations have been built in Branford, Clinton, Guilford, and Madison. Westbrook Station upgrades are under design.
- Incident Management System. Traffic and incidents are monitored through an expanded Incident Management System (IMS). The IMS is comprised of numerous cameras linked to a State Police/CTDOT Operations Center in Bridgeport. From the Operations Center, State Police can quickly communicate with emergency or towing vehicles to aid motorists in need. Camera locations were extended 4 miles along I-91 to Exit 8 (Route 80) and 14 miles along I-95 from Exit 56 to the Clinton/Westbrook town line. Three (3) Highway Advisory Radio (HAR) stations were installed and two (2) temporary electronic Variable Message Signing (VMS) systems have been added along the corridor.
- Adjacent Projects. Program work will be coordinated closely with work on other key roadways, such as Route 1 (Branford) and Route 80 (North Branford) and Frontage Roads (East Haven) and Howard Avenue. Every effort will be made to ensure that construction on these important arterials will not conflict with on-going work along the I-95 corridor.
- Maintain Lane Configurations. During construction, the number of lanes available on I-95 will not be reduced. No ramp or lane closures are planned for peak hours, which are defined as morning and evening commute times and Friday through Sunday on summer and holiday weekends. Lane closures, when required, will be confined to evening hours; in the event a daytime closure is unavoidable, advance notice will be provided to the public through various media outlets.
- Sequencing of Construction. A coordinated Maintenance and Protection of Traffic (MPT) Plan has been developed for the Program. To the extent possible, work zone lengths will be minimized by coordinating construction work along the corridor. For example, construction of Contracts D (Branford) and C1 (East Haven) were completed prior to initiating construction on the new Pearl Harbor Memorial Bridge.
- Commuter Information. On the road "real-time" information will be provided through:
- Traffic Cameras are positioned at various locations along the I-95 corridor and are accessible through this Program web site. Images are updated every two to five minutes;
- An up-to-date Interactive map of the Program area is available, on the website. The map is regularly updated as lane closures, detours, and other construction activities occur; and
- Enhancement of Highway Advisory Radio (HAR) and electronic Variable Message Signing (VMS). CTDOT currently operates ten (10) low frequency HAR stations around the state, which can be found on the AM band of standard car radios. Originally the nearest existing HAR station to this Improvement Program, operating at 1670 on the AM dial, was located in West Haven with a range of approximately 3 miles. As part of this project, CTDOT installed two (2) additional stations on I-95 near the Branford/Guilford town line and one (1) additional station on I-91 in North Haven. These new stations became operational in 2006.
- Motorist Aid. Throughout the corridor, an increased presence of CHAMP (Connecticut Highway Assistance Motorist Patrol) and State Police is being considered. Also important, on-site towing service will be provided as part of each construction contract. Timely removal of disabled vehicles will assist traffic flow through the construction zones.
- Diversionary Routes. Area-wide diversionary routes are established by the CTDOT Operations Center. In the event of a serious incident, messages are broadcast over the VMS and local and state personnel are in notified to assist in the diversion of traffic.
- Public Awareness. A media campaign is in place to inform the traveling public of construction activities. Information about road closures, detours, construction planning and alternate travel options is available through the Program toll-free hotline, the Program web site, and Program brochures, distributed to over 150 locations throughout Greater New Haven. Presentations to area civic organizations are broadcast on cable access channels and are available upon request. For more information, visit the Public Information section of this website.
- On-going evaluation. The impact of construction on traffic conditions will be monitored continually so that mid-course corrections can be made.