Interstate 395 joins Fairfax County and the cities of Alexandria and Arlington in Northern Virginia with the District of Columbia. The freeway extends northeast from the Springfield Interchange with the Capital Beltway (I-95/495) along the Henry G. Shirley Memorial Highway. Crossing the Potomac River into Washington, I-395 travels along the Southwest Freeway to I-695 (Southeast Freeway).
The northern portion of Interstate 395 follows the Center Leg Freeway and Mall Tunnel below the National Mall by the Capitol Reflecting Pool, just west of the U.S. Capitol building. The Center Leg Freeway emerges from the 3rd Street Tunnel at U.S. 50 (New York Avenue).
Express lanes run between the north and southbound roadways along Interstate 395 through Northern Virginia. Previously high occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes, construction underway from 2017 to 2019 expands the two-lane reversible roadway to three lanes and converts their operation into a toll facility.
Included within the 95 Express Lanes Comprehensive Agreement with Transurban, work on the I-395 Express Lanes Extension rebuild eight miles of roadway. The high occupancy toll (HO/T) lanes require drivers to have an E-ZPass or other eligible toll transponder. Eligible HOV traffic can use the lanes free of charge with an E-ZPass Flex transponder with the HOV mode set.
Third Street Tunnel
Construction started in July 2015 added a deck above the Center Leg Freeway supporting the Capitol Crossings development at Massachusetts Avenue. Costing $200 million, the lid joins an area bound by Massachusetts Avenue and 3rd, 2nd and E Streets.1 The four phase, $1.3 billion Third Street Tunnel project runs through 2019.
The entire length of Interstate 395 through metropolitan Washington, D.C. is part of High Priority Corridor 33: Capital Gateway Corridor.