Williamsburg region prepares for holiday travel

Jimmy LaRoue
Contact Reporterjlarouejr@vagazette.com

Williamsburg-area residents hitting the roads for the Thanksgiving holiday can expect them to be busy, mostly dry and free from road construction.

AAA projects a 3.3 percent increase in the number of travelers on the roads during the holiday, with 50.9 million Americans expected to travel at least 50 miles. Nearly 90 percent of Virginia residents who travel will go by car, AAA projects.

“Thanksgiving kicks off the start of a busy holiday season, and more thankful Americans will travel to spend time with friends and family this year,” said Judy Ocasio, AAA Tidewater vice president of travel and branch operations.

Ocasio credits a strong economy and labor market for increasing incomes and higher consumer confidence, meaning a stronger year for the travel industry.

Gas prices in Virginia are up 30 cents over the same time last year, with drivers fueling up at a $2.32 per gallon average, AAA says.

The average price in James City County, according to AAA, is $2.33 per gallon, the highest in the Williamsburg region. Gas in Williamsburg and in York County averages 5 cents less per gallon, AAA reports.

Among the cheapest areas to pump gas is Charles City County, where AAA reports the average price at $2.18. It is one of only three counties in the state with an average price below $2.20 a gallon.

When drivers hit the region’s roads, they will not have to contend with closed lanes in work zones. That’s because the Virginia Department of Transportation will stop work from noon Wednesday through noon Nov. 27.

VDOT said to expect periods of heavy congestion from mid-morning to evening on Wednesday, and then through the same period on Nov. 26. The agency advises people traveling in Virginia to download its 511 app to get real-time traffic information.

Road conditions should be good, with the Williamsburg region’s weather expected to stay dry through Friday, according to the National Weather Service’s Wakefield office.

High temperatures will reach 60 degrees Tuesday, the National Weather Service reported. Temperatures from Wednesday through Sunday, according to the weather service, should remain somewhere in the 50s — on the high end Wednesday, the low end Thursday, and somewhere in the middle Friday through Sunday.

The best chance for rain? Next Saturday, but the National Weather Service says at this point, it’ll barely be measurable.

Closings

York County

Schools — closed Wednesday through Friday, Nov. 22-24.

Public libraries — closing at 5 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 22, closed Thursday and Friday, Nov. 23-24.

Courts — closing at noon, Nov. 22, closed Nov. 23-24.

Virginia Cooperative Extension — closing at noon, Wednesday, Nov. 22, closed Thursday and Friday, Nov. 23-24.

County government offices — closed Thursday and Friday, Nov. 23-24.

York-Poquoson social services — closed Thursday and Friday, Nov. 23-24.

Waste Management Center Admin. — closed Thursday and Friday, Nov. 23-24.

Yorktown Battlefield — closed Thursday, Nov. 23.

Garbage and recycling collections normally scheduled for Thursday, Nov. 23 will be collected Friday, Nov. 24. Garbage and recycling collections normally scheduled for Friday, Nov. 24 will be collected Saturday, Nov. 25. Most operations, including the Goodwin Neck Transfer Station and Citizen Drop off for recycling and/or garbage disposal will follow normal operating hours on Friday, Nov. 24 and Saturday, Nov. 25.

The American Revolution Museum at Yorktown is open normal hours on Thanksgiving Day.

Williamsburg

Schools — closed Wednesday through Friday, Nov. 22-24.

City offices — closed Thursday and Friday, Nov. 23-24

Waller Mill Park — closed Thursday, Nov. 23

Quarterpath Recreation Center — closing at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 22, closed Thursday and Friday, Nov. 23-24

Williamsburg-James City County Courthouse — closing at noon, Wednesday, Nov. 22, closed Thursday and Friday, Nov. 23-24

Williamsburg Regional Library — closing at 5 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 22, closed Thursday and Friday, Nov. 23-24.

Water Emergencies — after hours, weekends and holidays, call 220-2331.

The city has a 24-hour bill payment drop box located on the front of the Municipal Building at 401 Lafayette St. for city transactions, which can also be made online on the city’s website. Drop box payments made on Thursday and Friday, Nov. 23-24 will not be posted until the following Monday.

James City County

Schools — closed Wednesday through Friday, Nov. 22-24.

County offices — closed Thursday and Friday, Nov. 23-24.

James City County Recreation Center and Abram Frink Jr. Community Center — closed Thursday, Nov. 23.

Convenience Centers and Garbage Transfer Station — closed Thursday, Nov. 23.

Curbside Recycling — shifted back one day – Thursday pickup moved to Friday, Friday pickup moved to Saturday.

Libraries — closing at 5 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 22, closed Thursday and Friday, Nov. 23-24.

Courts — closed Thursday and Friday, Nov. 23-24.

All County Parks are open. Some parks have stores/offices:

Freedom Park Store/Office — closed Thursday, Nov. 23.

Chickahominy Riverfront Park Store/Office — closed Thursday and Friday, Nov. 23-24.

James City County Marina Store/Office — closed Thursday and Friday, Nov. 23-24.

Historic Jamestowne — closed Thursday, Nov. 23.

Jamestown Settlement is open normal hours on Thanksgiving Day.

LaRoue can be reached by phone at 757-345-2342, by email at jlarouejr@vagazette.com or on Twitter @jlaroue.

Copyright © 2017, The Virginia Gazette
37°