TRAFFIC ALERT: Innerbelt Closure Begins

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CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Drivers, get ready; it's going to be backed-up on the highways around downtown Cleveland for several days due to some major Innerbelt Bridge changes.

"Beginning Thursday morning during morning rush hour, we will be closing I-90 eastbound. This will impact motorists coming into downtown from the westside and south communities," said Jocelynn Clemings, ODOT spokesperson.

The closure started today at 9 a.m. I-90 will close until Monday morning at 6 a.m.

"It takes a minute to get into downtown as it is, with the orange cones and all the roads blocked off. And for them to give us more detours, you're gonna have to get up an hour earlier just to get down here," said Rany Tan, who drives into downtown.

ODOT will be detouring traffic onto I-490 East to I-77 North.

*CLICK for more on alternate routes*

With all that traffic diverted, some downtown businesses are worried.

"Bad for business. Everything around here has been slow. And now they are going to close it for four days?  We're going to get no traffic here," said Nikki Terrell, who works at the BP right off the East 9th exit.

Wait, there are more. Add in another closure in the other direction.

"We'll also have a closure of I-90 westbound that will impact your Thursday night and weekend commute," added Clemings.

I-90 westbound will shut down at 7 p.m. tonight and will reopen at 6 a.m. Friday. It will close again Friday at 8 p.m. and open at 6 a.m. Monday.

** Click here for suggestions on alternate routes from Cleveland drivers **

Now, the newly built Innerbelt Bridge is open, but only the westbound lanes.

ODOT plans to have all I-90 traffic using the new bridge Monday morning,

"We are using this time because of the bad weather predicted over the weekend. We need the clear skies now to do the final striping of the paint," said Clemings.

ODOT says to pack your patience.

"In the end, the progress should be great, good for everyone. But right now, during the process, it's a big inconvenience," said Rick Foster, who drives downtown to train clients.

CLICK for continuing coverage on the Innerbelt project.

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