Syracuse (WSYR-TV) - Drivers heading north on I-81 will need to find an alternate route this weekend.
I-81 North, past the Adams Street off-ramp, will be shut down. Additionally, the on-ramp from Almond Street to 81 North will be reduced to one lane.
The closure is taking place to conduct some concrete bridge deck repairs. The DOT hopes to reopen the highway by 6 a.m. on Monday.
Those bridge decks are about 45-years-old. Due to salt application and the usual wear and tear, they've been ruined over time.
Crews will be working around the clock this weekend to keep the area warm so the concrete doesn't crack.
"We usually don't do a lot of this work in colder weather but it can be done as long as precautions are made,” said Gene Cilento with the New York Department of Transportation.
Cilento said the DOT chose to do the work on the weekend because the amount of drivers using 81 drops by about half.
Anyone trying to get into the city during the construction should use 481.
"If you still want to get into downtown going that way you can connect to 690 westbound and come downtown or continue on 481 north and head up to the airport as a through route,” said Cilento.
Alternate Route information from the NY State Department of Transportation --
Traffic approaching Syracuse on northbound I-81 from points south of the city will be encouraged to use northbound I-481 as an alternate route; this would allow access to downtown Syracuse via westbound I-690. I-481 continues north and west and eventually intersects with I-81, north of Hancock International Airport.
North of the suggested I-481 alternate route, northbound I-81 traffic will be channelized into the right lane and have to exit onto Almond Street at Exit 18. On Almond Street, traffic will continue northbound to the right lane of the entrance ramp to northbound I-81. From the top of the on-ramp, motorists will be able to access eastbound I-690, westbound I-690 or continue on northbound I-81. Motorists using northbound I-81 and Almond Street should expect some delays, even with the lower volume weekend traffic volumes.