- The Washington Times - Monday, June 16, 2014

Expect traffic delays at midnight Tuesday on Interstate 495 as the Woodrow Wilson Memorial Bridge is opened to allow a boat through on the Potomac River.

The bridge is expected to be open for approximately 12 to 15 minutes as the vessel Indigo passes through, according to the Maryland State Highway Association. The goal is to keep traffic disruptions to less than 20 minutes, spokesman David Buck said.

This will be the 18th time this year the draw bridge has opened, though only the 12th time it has opened for ships to pass through. Other openings were conducted as part of maintenance, Mr. Buck said.

The Wilson bridge was rebuilt in the last decade to accommodate larger river traffic and to cut down on the number of times it would be required to open. The old bridge, which was demolished in 2006, had to open for river traffic an average of 260 times a year. Last year, the bridge opened a total of 41 times, though the majority of the openings were also for routine maintenance, Mr. Buck said.

This particular opening was scheduled to take place on Sunday, but a mechanical failure on the Indigo led to delays in its schedule, Mr. Buck said.

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