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Author Topic: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways  (Read 10714 times)

Max Rockatansky

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I took some family that came into Bakersfield over the past week up to Kings Canyon and Sequoia National Park.  Basically it gave me an opportunity to take what in my opinion is the most underrated California State Highway which would be 245.  CA 245 is a short 42 mile State Highway which runs from CA 198 near Visalia all the way up to CA 180 near the entrance station for Grant Grove in Kings Canyon National Park.  Basically all that I'm trying to convey is that this route is a blast to drive since it has a couple hundred curves and gains about 5,000 feet in elevation on the uphill climb into the Sierras.  The best part is that unlike the Generals Highway or 180 there is virtually nobody ever on 245 which lets you really test your ability with a car or bike.  This go around I had my new Challenger and really got a chance to see what handling capabilities it had. 

Really I wanted was to plug how awesome 245 was and see if anyone had some other alternate scenic routes to other popular Californian sites of interest.  Another one that comes to mind is CA 140 heading through Merced River Gorge as opposed to the tourist favorite CA 41.
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oscar

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2016, 10:43:49 PM »

I took some family that came into Bakersfield over the past week up to Kings Canyon and Sequoia National Park.  Basically it gave me an opportunity to take what in my opinion is the most underrated California State Highway which would be 245.  CA 245 is a short 42 mile State Highway which runs from CA 198 near Visalia all the way up to CA 180 near the entrance station for Grant Grove in Kings Canyon National Park.  Basically all that I'm trying to convey is that this route is a blast to drive since it has a couple hundred curves and gains about 5,000 feet in elevation on the uphill climb into the Sierras.  The best part is that unlike the Generals Highway or 180 there is virtually nobody ever on 245 which lets you really test your ability with a car or bike.  This go around I had my new Challenger and really got a chance to see what handling capabilities it had.

I drove it in February, in a pickup truck whose high points don't include handling. It was OK, but I would've preferred to take the Generals Highway (partly closed by snow when I was out there) directly between Kings Canyon and Sequoia.

Quote
Really I wanted was to plug how awesome 245 was and see if anyone had some other alternate scenic routes to other popular Californian sites of interest.  Another one that comes to mind is CA 140 heading through Merced River Gorge as opposed to the tourist favorite CA 41.

It will be nicer once the original alignment is reopened (work is underway), to eliminate a detour with two one-lane bridges (shared by both directions of traffic) across the river.
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #2 on: May 07, 2016, 10:59:53 PM »

I took some family that came into Bakersfield over the past week up to Kings Canyon and Sequoia National Park.  Basically it gave me an opportunity to take what in my opinion is the most underrated California State Highway which would be 245.  CA 245 is a short 42 mile State Highway which runs from CA 198 near Visalia all the way up to CA 180 near the entrance station for Grant Grove in Kings Canyon National Park.  Basically all that I'm trying to convey is that this route is a blast to drive since it has a couple hundred curves and gains about 5,000 feet in elevation on the uphill climb into the Sierras.  The best part is that unlike the Generals Highway or 180 there is virtually nobody ever on 245 which lets you really test your ability with a car or bike.  This go around I had my new Challenger and really got a chance to see what handling capabilities it had.

I drove it in February, in a pickup truck whose high points don't include handling. It was OK, but I would've preferred to take the Generals Highway (partly closed by snow when I was out there) directly between Kings Canyon and Sequoia.

Quote
Really I wanted was to plug how awesome 245 was and see if anyone had some other alternate scenic routes to other popular Californian sites of interest.  Another one that comes to mind is CA 140 heading through Merced River Gorge as opposed to the tourist favorite CA 41.

It will be nicer once the original alignment is reopened (work is underway), to eliminate a detour with two one-lane bridges (shared by both directions of traffic) across the river.

That was the best part about that trip.  Took 245 up, 180 down to Kings Canyon and the Generals Highway back down to 198. 

The nice thing about that detour on 140 is that it takes you onto the Yosemite Valley Railroad alignment for a short while.  It's too bad you can't stop and take a picture of the rock slide...
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nexus73

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2016, 09:42:28 AM »

197 is about 7 miles long.  You'll see the Smith River as it gets close to the ocean, lots of redwood trees and some pretty countryside.  It connects US 101 to US 199 in between Brookings and Crescent City.

Rick
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2016, 09:22:01 PM »

197 is about 7 miles long.  You'll see the Smith River as it gets close to the ocean, lots of redwood trees and some pretty countryside.  It connects US 101 to US 199 in between Brookings and Crescent City.

Rick

Yeah I blew right past it yesterday when I was heading into Crescent City.  I'll have to check it out on the next pass-thru, I just got way too into high speed mountaineering I was doing out on US 199.   :-D
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sparker

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #5 on: July 03, 2016, 04:59:39 AM »

Funny story from my sometimes misspent youth regarding CA 245:  Prior to late 1970, it had been CA 69 (you can guess where this story's going!).  I was attending UC Riverside at the time and living in a group-housing complex on campus near the dorms; one of my housemates was a guy from Strathmore, a few miles south of the 69 terminus at 198 along CA 65.  Always the roadgeek, I had my room plastered with maps -- local, state, US -- and this fellow made the comment that he had a buddy from nearby Lindsay (which was the site of their local high school) who had me beat at the road appreciation game.  After a phone call, we drove up to the University of Redlands (a private college in that city) to visit this guy.  He was living in a similar complex to ours -- a series of large common rooms, each flanked by several individual small bedrooms.  His bedroom was literally plastered with California 69 shields; he must have had at least 20 in the bedroom alone; the common room was decorated with about a half-dozen more!  It seems like every time he went home to visit his family he'd drive out to 69 with his local friends after several beers and snag a reassurance shield or two (and he said he returned home about once every other month).  Since it turned out the guy was a junior in college; the math more or less added up to 2-3 69 signs pilfered per visit.  Seems that district's normal signage was a shield (sometimes directionally bannered but often not) mounted by a couple of long half-inch bolts through a wooden post (no Loctite or Nylok anti-theft measures!).  It was relatively easy for a carful of half-drunk college guys to have a sign dismounted in a couple of minutes.   All they needed was a pickup or a van, a ladder, and a couple of heavy-duty wrenches -- not uncommon in farming country!

After staring for several minutes with a mixture of awe and dismay, all I could do was shake my head (after all, it was college pranks in the wild, wild '60's and early '70's).  When I saw the 1971 maps with 245 signed in place of 69, I figured Caltrans had finally come to the realization that 69 was a number that was going to be problematic -- particularly in a rural area with only sporadic patrolling.  They haven't tried to recommission that number elsewhere since -- and something tells me they never will! 

« Last Edit: July 03, 2016, 07:58:00 PM by sparker »
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #6 on: July 03, 2016, 10:01:00 AM »

Funny story from my sometimes misspent youth regarding CA 245:  Prior to late 1970, it had been CA 69 (you can guess where this story's going!).  I was attending UC Riverside at the time and living in a group-housing complex on campus near the dorms; one of my housemates was a guy from Strathmore, a few miles south of the 69 terminus at 198 along CA 65.  Always the roadgeek, I had my room plastered with maps -- local, state, US -- and this fellow made the comment that he had a buddy from nearby Lindsay (which was the site of their local high school) who had me beat at the road appreciation game.  After a phone call, we drove up to the University of Redlands (a private college in that city) to visit this guy.  He was living in a similar complex to ours -- a series of large common rooms, each flanked by several individual small bedrooms.  His bedroom was literally plastered with California 69 shields; he must have had at least 20 in the bedroom alone; the common room was decorated with about a half-dozen more!  It seems like every time he went home to visit his family he'd drive out to 69 with his local friends after several beers and snag a reassurance shield or two (and he said he returned home about once every other month).  Since it turned out the guy was a junior in college; the math more or less added up to 2-3 69 signs pilfered per visit.  Seems that district's normal signage was a shield (sometimes directionally bannered but often not) mounted by a couple of long half-inch bolts through a wooden post (no Loctite or Nylok anti-theft measures!) it was relatively easy for a carful of half-drunk college guys to have a sign dismounted in a couple of minutes.   All they needed was a pickup or a van, a ladder, and a couple of heavy-duty wrenches -- not uncommon in farming country!

After staring for several minutes with a mixture of awe and dismay, all I could do was shake my head (after all, it was college pranks in the wild, wild '60's and early '70's).  When I saw the 1971 maps with 245 signed in place of 69, I figured Caltrans had finally come to the realization that 69 was a number that was going to be problematic -- particularly in a rural area with only sporadic patrolling.  They haven't tried to recommission that number elsewhere since -- and something tells me they never will!

Geeze...makes me wonder what happened to all those signs, you'd think a lot of them would have hit Ebay by now.
  • :-D
  Knowing the area like I do I've always been surprised that 245 just didn't become a northern extension of 65, especially when it got really apparent that the northern segment would never connect to the south.  Probably the most infamous story I heard about renumbering due to rural sign theft was US 666 out in Arizona...man I've never heard of a DOT like ADOT that hated a route number so much.  The great irony is that Arizona 69 is in a largely urban and patrolled environment and those are rarely stolen...AND I actually have one in my personal collection that I got from a scrapper.
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cahwyguy

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #7 on: July 03, 2016, 10:55:40 AM »

Knowing the area like I do I've always been surprised that 245 just didn't become a northern extension of 65, especially when it got really apparent that the northern segment would never connect to the south. 

Well, actually, my notes show that Route 69 (later Route 245) was originally part of Route 65, and was renumbered as Route 69 when a new alignment was proposed for Route 65 in 1964. Route 69 was part of LRN 129, defined in 1933.
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #8 on: July 03, 2016, 11:59:01 AM »

Knowing the area like I do I've always been surprised that 245 just didn't become a northern extension of 65, especially when it got really apparent that the northern segment would never connect to the south. 

Well, actually, my notes show that Route 69 (later Route 245) was originally part of Route 65, and was renumbered as Route 69 when a new alignment was proposed for Route 65 in 1964. Route 69 was part of LRN 129, defined in 1933.

Now that's some irony right there, seems like that whole northern spur was meant to be much greater things just like a lot of the split routes that were never built.  Got any good reference materials on the net for the LRN numbers?  I have some really good sources for Florida and the pre-1945 route numbers but I can't find anything solid for the LRNs.
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sparker

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #9 on: July 03, 2016, 04:36:17 PM »

There was actually a LRN for the never-developed segment of 65 between 198 and I-80; it was LRN 249.  That whole segment has existed as a "line on a map" since the first iteration of the master "California Freeway & Expressway System" was devised in 1959.  There was never a formal adoption of alignment for any portion of this corridor except for a short time in the '70's east of Sacramento; even that was later rescinded.  The only rumblings of anything being done to advance this corridor came in the early '90's, when eastward expanding housing in the Fresno/Clovis area prompted some locals to opine that an eastern bypass of the metro area partially using the 65 corridor would be appropriate to address traffic needs.  This segment would have struck out northwest from the 65/198 junction as previously planned, crossing 180 just east of Minkler and the San Joaquin River immediately downstream from Friant Dam.  But the Fresno-initiated plans included intersecting 41 a few miles north of 145, and then turning west on another proposed alignment -- an eastern extension of 152, also a longstanding "dotted line" on the same statewide planning map.  The whole thing was envisioned as a large arc around the eastern side of metro Fresno, providing more immediate egress from the expanding eastern suburbs.  The concept got legs for a while, but was "back-burnered" by the later part of the decade.  I haven't heard of any plans for reviving this plan recently; housing in that area has yet to recover from the recession, so I'm surmising that the corridor is pretty much shelved.   
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #10 on: July 03, 2016, 04:59:30 PM »

It's interesting that so much north of the San Joaquin River really never ended up developing in the foot hills.  It's pretty bare country out there north of Fresno and Lake Millerton.  It's interesting to see how few really good ways there to connect to 41 or 180 once 168 ceases to be a freeway.  Looks like the project was abandoned for all the right reasons.
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sparker

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #11 on: July 03, 2016, 07:29:11 PM »

Pretty much the whole length of the 65 corridor was intended to extend along the delineation point of "usable" Valley enterprises (agricultural, housing, etc.) to the west and foothills to the east.  Incidentally, it was intended to serve as the termination point for CA 59 near Snelling -- part of the reason that route never continued northward along County J59 to either 132 or 108/120 (aside from the $$ it would take to make that road a safe & efficient thoroughfare to and from Gold Country recreational points). 
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #12 on: July 03, 2016, 07:40:38 PM »

Pretty much the whole length of the 65 corridor was intended to extend along the delineation point of "usable" Valley enterprises (agricultural, housing, etc.) to the west and foothills to the east.  Incidentally, it was intended to serve as the termination point for CA 59 near Snelling -- part of the reason that route never continued northward along County J59 to either 132 or 108/120 (aside from the $$ it would take to make that road a safe & efficient thoroughfare to and from Gold Country recreational points).

Yeah that terrain gets pretty rough by the Merced River despite the low elevation.  It's a hell of a wild drive even using O'Byrnes Ferry (which is actually fairly decent given the rough terrain) from CA 108 to CA 4 in Copperopolis which I gather is probably roughly where 65 would have been routed along?  That probably explains why J59 never became part of CA 59 north of Snelling. 
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sparker

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #13 on: July 04, 2016, 02:46:49 PM »

Speaking of other obscure California state routes -- but keeping the discussion in the Valley -- it's interesting to note that after the West Valley segment of I-5 was completed circa 1972, Caltrans adopted/extended several localized routings to serve as connections.  While that in itself is not all that uncommon, Caltrans tends to "stick to the plan", adopting routings that have been previously legislatively established and subsequently shown as dotted lines on the official state highway maps.  Curiously, none of these routes were shown on previous route listings or maps prior to their adoption & signage.  These are (1) the extension of 145 from 180 near Kerman south to 5 Points, then SW to I-5 (and CA 33) north of Coalinga (this is the infamous interchange where a I-5 traveler needs to have his/her windows all the way up to avoid the (mal)odor of the adjacent Harris Ranch stockyards!); (2) the establishment of CA 269 south of 5 Points, along a southern extension of the north-south portion of 145; this crosses I-5 and terminates at CA 33 in Avenal; and (3) CA 165, which serves as a southerly egress connector from I-5 to Los Banos, but which extends north of there to CA 99 at Turlock.  In addition to these newly-established routes, 33 was removed from its original surface routing which crossed over I-5 a couple of times before striking out on Derrick Road toward Mendota and multiplexed with I-5 from Harris Ranch to Derrick Rd. 

Since none of these routings -- or even the West Valley region in general -- were previously planned by Caltrans or its predecessor before these deployments and reroutings took place (all, IIRC, between 1975 and 1983), exploring the impetus for their establishment would be an interesting exercise.  Likely scenario:  local state legislators and/or county officials, realizing that the West Valley had always been given short shrift by Caltrans, saw the opening of I-5 through their midst as an opportunity to correct a longstanding situation of either oversight or neglect, and took action to manifest their concerns.  Alternate scenario:  since this Valley area is dominated by large-scale agribusiness, those various firms pressured Caltrans (directly or indirectly) to provide state-maintained facilities for their transport needs.  Either way, the establishment and signage of these routes occurred within a relatively short timespan (at least, historically, for road projects in California!). 
« Last Edit: July 04, 2016, 03:05:11 PM by sparker »
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #14 on: July 04, 2016, 03:03:28 PM »

Speaking of other obscure California state routes -- but keeping the discussion in the Valley -- it's interesting to note that after the West Valley segment of I-5 was completed circa 1972, Caltrans adopted/extended several localized routings to serve as connections.  While that in itself is not all that uncommon, Caltrans tends to "stick to the plan", adopting routings that have been previously legislatively established and subsequently shown as dotted lines on the official state highway maps.  Curiously, none of these routes were shown on previous route listings or maps prior to their adoption & signage.  These are (1) the extension of 145 from 180 near Kerman south to 5 Points, then SW to I-5 (and CA 33) north of Coalinga (this is the infamous interchange where a I-5 traveler needs to have his/her windows all the way up to avoid the (mal)odor of the adjacent Harris Ranch stockyards!); (2) the establishment of CA 269 south of 5 Points, along a southern extension of the north-south portion of 145; this crossed I-5 and terminated at CA 33 in Avenal; and (3) CA 165, which serves as a southerly egress connector from I-5 to Los Banos, but which extends north of there to CA 99 at Turlock.  In addition to these newly-established routes, 33 was removed from its original surface routing which crossed over I-5 a couple of times before striking out on Derrick Road toward Mendota and multiplexed with I-5 from Harris Ranch to Derrick Rd. 

Since none of these routings -- or even the West Valley region in general -- were previously planned by Caltrans or its predecessor before these deployments and reroutings took place (all, IIRC, between 1975 and 1983), exploring the impetus for their establishment would be an interesting exercise.  Likely scenario:  local state legislators and/or county officials, realizing that the West Valley had always been given short shrift by Caltrans, saw the opening of I-5 through their midst as an opportunity to correct a longstanding situation of either oversight or neglect, and took action to manifest their concerns.  Alternate scenario:  since this Valley area is dominated by large-scale agribusiness, those various firms pressured Caltrans (directly or indirectly) to provide state-maintained facilities for their transport needs.  Either way, the establishment and signage of these routes occurred within a relatively short timespan (at least, historically, for road projects in California!).

Funny...wasn't there something about Amazon wanting to open a distribution center near Fresno but they wanted Caltrans to open up CA 198, 41 and 43 to full freeways?  Looks like Caltrans balked at that idea (rightfully so in my opinion) and Amazon decided on Tracy instead?
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sparker

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #15 on: July 04, 2016, 03:17:42 PM »

Although it is much farther from Southern California than Fresno, Tracy -- or even neighboring Manteca -- is a very logical place to locate a distribution point:  it has rail lines extending in 3 directions (N, S, and W to the Bay Area) as well as Interstate routes doing the same (5,580,205).  The only drawback is the regional congestion due to the area being a lower-housing-cost series of "bedroom communities" for the Bay.  Amazon will need to engage in some serious logistical planning to avoid having their inbound & outbound shipments caught up in the area's infamous "rush hours" (this from more personal experience than I care to recall)!
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #16 on: July 04, 2016, 03:27:23 PM »

Although it is much farther from Southern California than Fresno, Tracy -- or even neighboring Manteca -- is a very logical place to locate a distribution point:  it has rail lines extending in 3 directions (N, S, and W to the Bay Area) as well as Interstate routes doing the same (5,580,205).  The only drawback is the regional congestion due to the area being a lower-housing-cost series of "bedroom communities" for the Bay.  Amazon will need to engage in some serious logistical planning to avoid having their inbound & outbound shipments caught up in the area's infamous "rush hours" (this from more personal experience than I care to recall)!

That's why I'm thinking that the Fresno And Kings County areas were looked at seriously by Amazon, that traffic is going to be a total abortion.  It's intriguing to think how much of the character of San Joaquin Valley...specifically Fresno could have changed with all those upgrades Amazon wanted.  There are a couple freight lines that run roughly the corridors of 198 and 43 that would have needed some upgrades as well.
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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #17 on: July 04, 2016, 04:34:19 PM »

If Amazon was pressing for upgrades of 41, 43, and 198, that indicates to me that the actual facility would have been located more  toward Hanford or Lemoore than in the denser central Fresno area.  If Fresno itself were the location, then they would have more likely pressed for a westward extension of the 180 freeway (perhaps all the way west past Mendota to I-5) and/or a drastic advancement of the timetable for Interstate conversion of 99.  Hanford makes sense, because it's right on the main BNSF line through the Valley; while Lemoore is at the western end of the UP spur line extending west from Goshen Junction through Hanford; it used to extend to Coalinga to serve the old oilfields there, but was cut back to Lemoore (to serve the NAS there) back in the late '80's.  So those locations would have featured rail and road access -- but without the inherent congestion levels of the Fresno metro area.  Also, it would have been even closer to the L.A. market.  Since 41 is already expanded to 4-lane expressway standards north of 198, Amazon would likely have pushed for similar (or even full-freeway) upgrades south on that route to I-5 for quicker southbound egress; the same would apply to 198 west to I-5 for north/west movements.  From Hanford, Lemoore, or some point in between, I think that Amazon planners would have considered I-5 to be their primary corridor rather than 99 -- principally due to the lack of urbanization along that route.  As an aside, they probably never travelled I-5 on a holiday weekend!   
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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #18 on: July 04, 2016, 05:31:41 PM »

If Amazon was pressing for upgrades of 41, 43, and 198, that indicates to me that the actual facility would have been located more  toward Hanford or Lemoore than in the denser central Fresno area.  If Fresno itself were the location, then they would have more likely pressed for a westward extension of the 180 freeway (perhaps all the way west past Mendota to I-5) and/or a drastic advancement of the timetable for Interstate conversion of 99.  Hanford makes sense, because it's right on the main BNSF line through the Valley; while Lemoore is at the western end of the UP spur line extending west from Goshen Junction through Hanford; it used to extend to Coalinga to serve the old oilfields there, but was cut back to Lemoore (to serve the NAS there) back in the late '80's.  So those locations would have featured rail and road access -- but without the inherent congestion levels of the Fresno metro area.  Also, it would have been even closer to the L.A. market.  Since 41 is already expanded to 4-lane expressway standards north of 198, Amazon would likely have pushed for similar (or even full-freeway) upgrades south on that route to I-5 for quicker southbound egress; the same would apply to 198 west to I-5 for north/west movements.  From Hanford, Lemoore, or some point in between, I think that Amazon planners would have considered I-5 to be their primary corridor rather than 99 -- principally due to the lack of urbanization along that route.  As an aside, they probably never travelled I-5 on a holiday weekend!   

Correct I think that they planned to build something at the intersection of 41 and 198 somewhere.  The one part of the plans that I thought was actually really beneficial was upgrading 41 north of Lemoore to Fresno as a full freeway.  I could in theory seeing completing the 198 expressway to I-5 but it would be a tough sell for the whole route to be a freeway, same thing with 41 south to Kettleman.  Apparently all of CA 43 had to be included as a full freeway for whatever reason...I guess they wanted another I-5 connector. 
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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #19 on: July 04, 2016, 05:59:23 PM »

Seriously, 43?  To serve as a connector to 5 you'd need to circumnavigate Corcoran, Wasco, and Shafter as well as the smaller towns in between -- not to mention the proximity of the adjacent BNSF tracks.  The only way that I can see Amazon even remotely justifying wanting 43 upgrades was if there were to be two facilities along 198; one near the 41 junction as a main distribution warehouse for maximum truck access, plus some sort of office complex/secondary warehouse near the larger town of Hanford, primarily for the convenience (read perks!) of Amazon site management.  But even so, 43 upgrades merely evoke a WTF reaction from anyone with access to a map! 
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #20 on: July 04, 2016, 06:40:42 PM »

Seriously, 43?  To serve as a connector to 5 you'd need to circumnavigate Corcoran, Wasco, and Shafter as well as the smaller towns in between -- not to mention the proximity of the adjacent BNSF tracks.  The only way that I can see Amazon even remotely justifying wanting 43 upgrades was if there were to be two facilities along 198; one near the 41 junction as a main distribution warehouse for maximum truck access, plus some sort of office complex/secondary warehouse near the larger town of Hanford, primarily for the convenience (read perks!) of Amazon site management.  But even so, 43 upgrades merely evoke a WTF reaction from anyone with access to a map!

Exactly my thoughts.  There was an earlier thread somewhere on the subject a couple months back actually with the news article.  I can't see any possibly justification for 43, the route is actually pretty adequate other than the slow speed limit.  A lot of folks were trying to argue with me that there was a traffic problem which I've NEVER seen on 43...not even near Selma during the morning rush. 
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #21 on: July 04, 2016, 06:57:02 PM »

Found the thread in question:

http://www.aaroads.com/forum/index.php?topic=17629.0

Apparently I didn't remember 43 correctly, they wanted north of 198 to at minimum an expressway.  Still seems like overkill to me.....
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sparker

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #22 on: July 04, 2016, 10:17:30 PM »

Yeah...even though some of those improvements might have been initiated or prompted by Amazon, it seems Kings County is pretty eager to get in on the Valley freeway bandwagon.  I can see at least a 2-lane expressway (with ROW protection & channelization)  from 198 to Corcoran along 43, but for the present I just don't see the need for anything more.  Unless someone figured that Hanford residents (or, prior to the Tracy decision, future Amazon employees) would be jonesing for some of those fine Selma raisins, an expressway north of 198 would likely not be a cost-effective venture; there is too much driveway access to the present roadway to practically utilize it as an expressway/freeway ROW; new alignment, with the accompanying property-acquisition cost, would be necessary.  Even without Amazon, I can see 198 as an expressway facility west to I-5 in my lifetime (and I'm an old fart!) -- but not much else.   
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coatimundi

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #23 on: July 05, 2016, 01:40:02 AM »

I've been surprised how low the traffic volumes are west of the Lemoore NAS on 198. I think part of the reason is that no one uses it for a trans-mountain route like I do - they'd rather (or Google tells them to) take 152 or 46 - and there's really nothing west of Lemoore. Looking at a map, a freeway all the way to I-5 is obvious, but I don't know that it's actually necessary. Then again, it shouldn't be that expensive to do.
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sparker

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Re: California 245 and other more obscure California State Highways
« Reply #24 on: July 05, 2016, 04:01:03 AM »

Coatimundi....thanks for the post; this thread had been turning into the "Max & Scotty Show (we'll be here all week; don't forget to tip your waitress!)".   :)   For a largely trans-state road, 198's traffic volume is concentrated between 41 and Sequoia Park.  Once, back in 1999,  I took 198 west from Coalinga to 25, then north, just to see what the area looked like.  Beteween Coalinga and the east CA 146 entrance to the Pinnacles, I don't think I passed more than a dozen vehicles (IIRC, 2 of them were UPS trucks!).  And you're right about the likely need for a freeway upgrade for 198 between 5 and 41: unless there's some political pressure emanating from Hanford and/or Visalia regarding the need for enhanced access to and from I-5 (now that Amazon didn't bite on the area), it'll likely stay as is for the time being; the most anyone could expect in the foreseeable future would be an expressway -- a full freeway wouldn't be justified.
« Last Edit: July 05, 2016, 04:58:36 AM by sparker »
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