Places


Day 2 of the whirlwind trip took us around the Shreveport freeway system, northward along new Interstate 49 to Arkansas, around Texarkana on the new I-369 and AR 549 freeways, and northeast to a revisit of the Little Rock Interstates. Meandering southeastward, we crossed the doomed Clarendon Bridge over the White River toward U.S. 49 through Helena-West Helena into Mississippi. Zigzagging southward, we ended up in Vicksburg.

Interstate 220 provides a through route bypass of Shreveport, traveling 17.62 miles through northern reaches of the city. The freeway utilizes a long viaduct over Cross Lake, which was the last facet of roadway to open for the route. Construction on the span commenced in January 1984, and it was originally slated for completion in 1986. Delays pushed back the opening date until April 10, 1989.1

A 1987 Shreveport inset from a Gousha atlas shows the Cross Lake bridge for Interstate 220 still under construction.

Interstate 220 east over Cross Lake. The bridge features a unique drainage system, where water flows toward the center of the span. Collected water departs a central pipe system for a concrete holding pond at the north side of the lake. This drainage method protects Cross Lake from chemicals and other pollutants. Cross Lake is the source of Shreveport’s drinking water.1

The east end of Interstate 220 consists of a half-built directional cloverleaf interchange with six stubs left over from an unconstructed extension southeast through Barksdale Air Force Base.

Grading for a loop ramp from unconstructed I-220 west to I-20 west is evident. Our 2008 blog post on Interstate 49 in Louisiana referenced a possible extension of the I-220 freeway southeast to the planned corridor of Interstate 69.

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Took Interstate 10 westbound from Northwest Florida to Lake Charles, Louisiana, then U.S. 171 north to Shreveport. Redocumented all of I-10 west to Lafayette, all of I-12 west, Interstates 110 and 210. Took new coverage of I-10 west to Lake Charles and all of U.S. 171 north toward Shreveport as well as photographing the south ends of U.S. 165 and 171.

The first construction of note on the day is the building of a diamond interchange with the north end of the Baldwin Beach Express (County Road 83). Work is expected to run through October of this year.

The ramps are partially paved and a new overpass is in place for the extension of County Road 83. Additionally, two lanes of the future four-lane roadway are open with two-way traffic between the I-10 overpass and County Road 64 to the south. The four-lane corridor leading south beyond U.S. 90 is not yet open to traffic, but nearly ready with base pavement already complete.

The future westbound off-ramp to County Road 83 / Baldwin Beach Express south. The 2015 Rand McNally atlas shows this interchange as open with the exit number of 49.

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AARoads contributor Chris Kalina traveled through the Memphis area on Saturday March 8th and took a look at progress for construction of Interstate 269, the Memphis outer beltway. Work is underway along the entire corridor from Interstates 55 & 69 east to Tennessee 385 (Bill Morris Parkway) at Collierville.

Tennessee is scheduled to complete their portion of I-269 by 2015, with work continuing through northern Mississippi until 2018.1 A great overview of current construction and the planned alignment for the freeway is available at the DeSoto County, Mississippi GIS Viewer.

Bridge supports and decking takes shape at an future overpass for McIngvale Road above the eventual mainline of Interstates 22 & 269, east of Interstate 55.

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The first of several construction projects encountered yesterday involves widening of Interstate 75 through Lee County, Florida, including the 1.6-mile project to expand the Caloosahatchee River. The $72-million project kicked off here in January 2013 and runs through fall of 2015. Construction is part of the final phase to expand all 33 miles of I-75 through Lee County to six lanes.1

Ten miles or so further south is the $54.1-million project to construct a new trumpet interchange joining Interstate 75 with Southwest Florida International Airport (RSW) directly. The I-75 -> Airport Direct Connect project commenced in fall 2012. Work includes the addition of a collector/distributor roadway along both sides of the freeway, tying in ramps for the Terminal Access Road extension with the adjacent Alico Road ramps.2

Also included in the work slated to run until spring 2015 is an overpass for the Airport Access Road above parallel Treeline Avenue / Ben Hill Griffin Parkway. A half-diamond interchange will provide local access to the airport from the surface arterial.2

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these photos are from the afternoon of the fifth day, and then all of the sixth. we do normal tourist stuff like get a hotel, exchange money, that sort of thing – and head north in Argentina to attempt to cross the border at Chile Chico.


the Andes, mostly in Chile here.


old signs in Bajo Caracoles. this used to be highway 40; now it is a barely recognizable dirt track, but still it got a new number.


here is Lago Buenos Aires, near the Chile border. on the other side, it’s called Lago General Carrera. here is approximately where we stop for the night, after we get to the border just a few minutes after it has closed.

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the fifth day consisted of the hike to the Mirador, then back down the hill, and on the road to El Calafate, Argentina.


The Mirador view!


Vegetation in infrared.


Flores del Paine.

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and now, a brief interruption. some photos from this previous weekend.


The Bay Bridge has had lights attached to it. It’s tough to tell from here, but they actually move in patterns. Well worth seeing in person. The lights will stay for the next two years, and can only be seen from the San Francisco side.


That other bridge that San Francisco is famous for. This is the view from Marin County. Not too much traffic on the bridge around midnight.


No bridge to be seen here; this is the view north from the Marin Headlands viewpoint. Angel Island is on the right, and Tiburon and Richmond are in the background.

The first part of our hike – up the hill to the campground where we would stay the night.


Typical afternoon scenery. A narrow trail that climbs gradually.


The sort of trees we’d see much of.

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these photos are from the morning of the fourth day, in which we drive – again! – the road from the west end of the park to the east end. then, we make a run for gasoline (all the way back to Natales!) and prepare for a hike.


The Salto Grande waterfall. Why is the photo slightly murky-looking? Because of all the mist flying around in the air. We walked down to an old bridge abutment, and climbed it to take photos directly into the wind for several minutes.


Reverse Martian look at the Cuernos in the morning.


A day of bright colors.


And here we have the Torres del Paine! This is about the clearest they got this day – usually they are shrouded in fog.

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in which we are actually inside the Torres del Paine national park.

here, we drive the main road to the other end, and back. mainly we’re scouting for a place to sleep, to catch optimal sunrise, and also seeing how long the road would take, as we’re planning to do a hike starting at the other end the next day.


A rainbow, in one of the few flat parts of the park.


Highly variable weather this day.


Serious guanaco is serious.


This is the sort of thing we flew to South America for.


Quarter moon over the park.

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