Changes made to 'most disruptive week to traffic' since I-4 Ultimate Project began, officials say

Artist rendering of what the completed I-4 Ultimate project will look like in Downtown Orlando. Pictured in the foreground is the Interstate 4 overpass at Colonial Drive. (FDOT)

The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) said that they are making changes to the existing schedule of construction over the next week.

At the start of Florida's stay-at-home order brought on by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, Governor Ron DeSantis announced that I-4 Ultimate construction would ramp up as people work from home, giving crews a chance to finish parts of it. With the state beginning to reopen, the I-4 Ultimate Project said that they will complete extensive work this week, with several lane and ramp closures planned in Downtown Orlando, taking advantage of the fewer cars on the road while they can.

I-4 Ultimate Project Community Outreach Specialist David Parks called it the "most disruptive we’ve had on this project since we broke ground in February of 2015."

MORE NEWS: When will Florida enter phase 2 of reopening and what will it include?

FDOT was originally going to reduce westbound I-4 traffic to just one lane through Downtown Orlando starting Wednesday night at 9 p.m. However, they will now begin this roadwork at 9 p.m. on Thursday. It will remain closed every day, all day through 6 a.m. on Monday, May 18. 

The construction will reduce traffic through Downtown Orlando from three lanes to just one between Princeton Street and Gore Street. This will allow for crews to adjust the start of the continuous lane reduction by one day and build a new transition between Amelia and Livingston street, moving traffic from the current westbound lanes onto new, "soon-to-be-completed" and elevated westbound lanes. 

Alternate routes, like exiting at Lee Road or using Orange Blossom Trail, or John Young Parkway are advised during these days. Depending on how the work goes, they added that they may need to close all of I-4 westbound at night.

MORE NEWS: Governor DeSantis invites professional sports teams to Florida for practices, games

In addition, I-4 and S.R. 408 entrance and exit ramps will be closed at varying times throughout the week as work continues at the I-4/ S.R. 408 interchange. They encourage drivers to seek alternate routes or consider using the SunRail to avoid delays.

A complete list of scheduled closures, detours, and alternate routes can be found on the I-4 Ultimate Project website.

Tune in to FOX 35 Orlando for the latest Central Florida news.

MOBILE USERS: Click here to tune in to FOX 35 Orlando