Big Test for Casey Traffic — School’s Back in Session

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The signals at Washington and New Washington on June 29, 2015.

Chris Helms

The signals at Washington and New Washington on June 29, 2015.

A new school year starts Tuesday, the first in five decades without a Casey Overpass.

While traffic gridlock has certainly been bad enough this summer, it's a defensible position to say it could've been worse. But with the return of school buses and autumn levels of traffic from motorists, Tuesday could be the beginning of "worse."

Through June, as drivers were getting used to the new (albeit temporary) traffic patterns, the construction was adding about 10 minutes to afternoon commutes, according to city estimates cited by the Globe.

There are fewer vehicle lanes now than will exist once the bulk of the project is done by Sept. 30, 2016. When the full project is done and all planned lanes operational, state traffic engineers predict it will take cars about 90 seconds longer getting from what is now Shea Circle to Murray Circle, where the Arborway intersects with Centre Street, versus that same trip when the Casey Overpass existed.

Here's an overview of what the project should look like when it's done:

General plan of the Casey Arborway project

Massachusetts Department of Transportation

General plan of the Casey Arborway project

See all our Casey Overpass/Casey Arborway coverage here.

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