Elizabeth River Tunnels: News and Updates
Please add info@DriveERT.com to your address book.

November 2015
Elizabeth River Tunnels Project Monthly Update

Travel Impacts

Due to the nature of construction, the below dates are subject to change and are weather dependent.

Visit the Travel Impacts page for more information. 

I-264 Downtown Tunnel:  No full weekend closures planned.
  • Westbound alternating lane closures: Tuesday through Thursday, Dec. 1-3 from 9 p.m. each night until 5 a.m. the following morning.
I-264 East at Berkley Bridge:
  • Single lane closure Wednesday through Friday, Dec. 2-4 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. daily
  • Single lane closure Wednesday through Friday, Dec. 2-4 from 8 p.m. each night until 5 a.m. the following morning.
I-464 North to I-264 West (Exit 6A): Ramp closure into I-264 West Downtown Tunnel through Wednesday, Dec. 2 from 8 p.m. each night until 5 a.m. the following morning.

No closures planned.

  • Full interstate closure east and westbound between Effingham Street and Portsmouth Boulevard Monday, and Tuesday, Dec. 7 and 8 from 8 p.m. each night until 5 a.m. the following morning.

Meet ERC's New Construction Director: Dan Norman

Dan Norman is among the original crew hired in 2012 by Elizabeth River Crossings (ERC) to manage the $1.5 billion Elizabeth River Tunnels (ERT) Project. For the past three years, he has served as Assistant Construction Director.
Earlier this fall, Norman was promoted to Construction Director and now oversees construction for ERC. In his role he works closely with VDOT and design-build contractor SKW Constructors, JV (SKW) to ensure that work complies with technical, safety and environmental requirements.
Norman, 38, was born and raised in the Republic of Panama; his American-born father worked on the Panama Canal. He left to get an engineering degree at the University of Notre Dame and begin a career and life in the United States, working for two engineering companies and earning an MBA from Keller Graduate School of Business.
After spending a few years working on the Panama Canal Expansion, Norman returned to the U.S. to begin work on the ERT Project. “I was excited to get this opportunity with ERC and start from scratch building a team and building the project,” he said.
He ranks ERC at the top of employers he’s worked for. “They value input and listen to what the guys on the ground are dealing with,” he said.
While the ERT Project continues to provide challenges found in a large scale civil engineering and construction project, Norman is poised to lead the team through the delivery of the completed project.
“It’s one of the most amazing projects I’ve ever worked on,” he says. “It’s technically challenging, fast-paced and involves several different stakeholders.”
Norman oversees all three construction sub-projects that make up the Elizabeth River Tunnels Project, from tunnel rehabilitation to construction of the Martin Luther King Extension and the New Midtown Tunnel. The Elizabeth River Tunnels Project is scheduled for completion in 2018.

Construction Milestones

Midtown Tunnel Construction

Crews installed a permanent bulkhead on the Norfolk side of the Elizabeth River near Element 11.

Marine Work
Marine work is winding down at the new Midtown Tunnel project site—the team is finalizing the fill layers on top of each of the 11 tunnel elements. On the Norfolk side, installation of a permanent bulkhead just north of Element 11 is underway.

Portsmouth and Norfolk Approaches


The Portsmouth Approach and new overheight vehicle road is complete and restriping and final tie-in to U.S. 58 are pending. Now crews have turned their attention to restoring the Virginia Port Authority (VPA) property areas no longer required for equipment and material laydown. 
Work on the Portsmouth Tunnel Support Building continues. The installation of the brick façade is nearing completion and crews are busy installing the electrical and mechanical equipment which will provide power, communications and emergency fire suppression water for the tunnel.


At the Norfolk Approach, the Project team has shifted work  to the crossover section, which will provide a connection between the eastbound and westbound lanes of U.S. 58. 

The Norfolk Tunnel Support Building work is moving quickly as well. The exterior concrete walls are complete and work on the interior walls is underway.  
Tunnel Interior Work

The final bulkhead on the Norfolk side of the new tunnel was removed this month.
Inside the new Midtown Tunnel, crews continue outfitting throughout the tube at a steady pace. Along with electrical contractors working in the roadway and utilidor, contractors are installing conduit and water lines, lifting beams and adding fire protection board to the walls and tunnel ceiling. The final bulkhead at the end of Element 11 (on the Norfolk side of the new tunnel) has been removed and work is underway to complete the joint connection to the closure section. The Project team is also installing conduit and supports for the new lights and lane use signals above the roadway. 

In the coming months, crews will complete installation of fire protection boards on the tunnel ceiling and walls, complete placement of the roadway topping slab and install permanent electrical and mechanical equipment.

Tide Gate 

After its arrival to the Norfolk Project site last month, the new tide gate is scheduled to be installed soon. The gate’s fire door panel, which provides fire protection and holds the gate while not in use, was recently lowered into place. Once the tide gate is installed, the final steel bulkhead can be removed between the Cut-and-Cover section and Element 11.

Learn more about the construction of the new tunnel on our Midtown Tunnel page

I-264 Downtown Tunnel Rehabilitation

Rehabilitation of the westbound Downtown Tunnel is nearly complete. Crews are finalizing the installation of the roadside devices on the Norfolk approach. In the eastbound tube, the Project team worked hard this month to complete the remaining rehabilitation work in the eastbound Downtown Tunnel. ERC, SKW and VDOT held a walkthrough inspection to review the work’s status. Remaining closures are required to complete the final phases of testing.  

For more information about tunnel rehabilitation, visit the Rehabilitation page.

Martin Luther King (MLK) Extension

Martin Luther King (MLK) Extension construction is progressing on schedule. The team reached a milestone this month when the I-264 East off-ramp to Frederick Boulevard was reopened to traffic after being closed for over a year.
Substructure work is nearing completion and all but a few footers near the railroad and Interstate 264 (I-264) crossing remain. All column work is complete with the exception of the railroad widening. Along the MLK mainline, crews continue erecting girders and will then place and pour concrete decks.  

 Learn more on the MLK Page of DriveERT.com. 

Left: An aerial view of the new MLK mainline.


Connect With Us

Project information is available at www.DriveERT.com. For questions or comments, contact us at info@DriveERT.com.

To report an incident or maintenance issue at the Elizabeth River Tunnels, call our 24-hour hotline at 1-855-ERT-ROAD (1-855-378-7623). 

You are receiving this email because you signed up for our newsletter and project updates on our website, at an event or by submitting a public comment.

To choose what emails you receive, you may update your subscription preferences. If you no longer wish to receive these emails you may unsubscribe from this list.