March 1, 2021, 10:42 a.m.

Jaymes Langrehr

Posted: Mar 1, 2021 at 10:42 am

MADISON, Wisconsin – Construction of a new lane on the Beltline for peak travel times begins today.

The “Flex Lane” enables drivers to use the inner middle shoulders as an additional lane if a large number of vehicles are on the beltline at the same time. Drivers know whether they can use the lane when the signs above the lane show a green arrow. When the arrow is yellow, drivers must return to the main beltline lanes.

Construction on the project includes closing lanes overnight, starting with a stretch between Stoughton Road and Todd Drive on Monday evening. The lane closure lasts on weekdays (Monday to Friday) from 6.30 p.m. to 6 a.m. A number of ramps on and off the belt are also closed due to the design. Message boards are used to announce these closings as soon as they occur and drivers have to find another route.

The lanes are expected to be closed during the day from Monday to Thursday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and on Sundays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The DOT first announced the planned closings last week, saying that the closures of lanes and ramps are weather dependent and subject to change.

Upon completion, the “Flex Lane” will be available between the Whitney Way exit and the I-39/90 interchange. Construction is expected to last most of the year and be completed in December before the lane opens later this year or early next year.