CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Road closures on US Route 340 near Harpers Ferry that had been previously announced for the end of this year now won’t happen until 2023.

The West Virginia Department of Highways has plans to close the road so crews can secure the rocks and stabilize the area above the busy road, which is prone to rockslides.

The DOH had planned to get the work started this October, but in a letter to Jefferson County 16th District Senator Patricia Rucker,

Chief Engineer of Development and Deputy State Highway Engineer Jason Foster says the work is now moved to the fall of 2023.

In the letter, Foster says a contractor will be awarded in the spring of next year, followed by a “public information period.”

67th District Delegate John Doyle of Jefferson County says the road closure will amount to a 22-mile detour. In a social media post last month, Delegate Doyle said he “suggested the DOH erect, with Maryland’s permission, a temporary bridge (called a Bailey bridge) between Sandy Hook, MD, and Harpers Ferry.”

He said that idea was ‘nixed’ by the National Park Service.