Blasting Will Mean Traffic, Pedestrian Disruptions At 8300 Wisconsin Ave.


Controlled explosions at the construction site of a 360-unit apartment building will cause some disruption near Wisconsin Avenue starting Monday. According to a press release from developer StonebridgeCarras, workers at 8300 Wisconsin Ave. have reached a level of dense rock that requires blasting. The Bethesda-based developer says blasting will begin on Wednesday, weather permitting, and the blasts will happen on and off for about the next six months. All blasts will happen between the hours of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., according to the developer, and each blast will be coordinated with WMATA, which operates the Red Line below Wisconsin Avenue. Donohoe Construction Company will conduct the explosions. The developer anticipates one blast per day for now. There will be a series of horn signals to warn workers: a) Warning Signal – a long horn sounds 15 minutes prior to the blast to signal to everyone in the vicinity that a blast will be occurring and to allow time for the construction personnel to move outside of the immediate blast area. b) Second Warning Signal – a long horn sounds 5 minutes prior to the blast to signal to everyone in the vicinity that a blast will be occurring. c) Blast Signal – a series of short horn sounds 1 minute prior to blast d) All Clear Signal – a prolonged horn sounds following the inspection of the blast area, signaling "all clear". This indicates to the construction workers they may return to work. Residents in apartment buildings along Battery Lane will likely hear the horns and the blasts and it's possible some close to the site will feel it. In December, residents around the Lot 31 project on Bethesda Avenue reported being caught off-guard by "earthquake-like thumps" as a result of blasting at that site. StonebridgeCarras is also the developer of that project. It appears the company has taken a more proactive approach to advise nearby residents of blasting at 8300 Wisconsin Ave. Representatives from the company, construction company and blasting crew held an information meeting on July 11 at the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Regional Services Center. The properties immediately adjacent to the project, which will include a ground-floor Harris Teeter grocery store, have been advised of the blasting and blast protocol. Crews will halt pedestrian traffic around the site five minutes prior to blasting and will also halt vehicle traffic around the site one minute prior to blasting. Much of the dense rock on the site is close to the Wisconsin Avenue sidewalk, according to a representative from StonebridgeCarras. Photo via StonebridgeCarras

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