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Author Topic: GAO in 1970: I-180 in Illinois Should Not Have Been Approved  (Read 8606 times)

SEWIGuy

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Re: GAO in 1970: I-180 in Illinois Should Not Have Been Approved
« Reply #50 on: September 20, 2021, 08:57:16 AM »

I asked a retired highway engineer who is not from Illinois on the existence of I-180.

While he was aware of the circumstances of its creation, he said it will probably never get struck from the federal record because it crosses over a federal waterway.

It's very hard to get federally funded highways over federal waterways struck from the record regardless of their utility.

He recited a litany of waterways in the US that are still on the federal record and therefore subject to federal rules and designations. He then told me that many are worthless and haven't been used for navigation in ages, but the rules are there.

Something I had never thought of.


That's really interesting, and likely why none of the state and US highways running through Green Bay have been moved to the freeways bypassing the cities since the Fox River is a federal waterway up to the dam in De Pere.

Do the locks even operate above Des Pere? There are drawbridges all the way to OshKosh until you reach the Tribal Heritage Bridge (I-41). And that definitely wasn't built to Federal standards for a waterway.


You can get recreational boats through the locks at De Pere, but a federal waterway is considered to be more than that.  Basically if it is a significant port, which would include the Port of Green Bay in the Fox River, it is a federal waterway.
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triplemultiplex

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Re: GAO in 1970: I-180 in Illinois Should Not Have Been Approved
« Reply #51 on: September 21, 2021, 03:24:51 PM »

Do the locks even operate above De Pere? There are drawbridges all the way to OshKosh until you reach the Tribal Heritage Bridge (I-41). And that definitely wasn't built to Federal standards for a waterway.

One of those lock sets between De Pere and Kaukauna is permanently closed to try and restrict the movement of invasive species from the Great Lakes deeper into the Fox River system.  Sea lampreys in particular.  I forget which lock it is, though.
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Rick Powell

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Re: GAO in 1970: I-180 in Illinois Should Not Have Been Approved
« Reply #52 on: September 21, 2021, 07:02:45 PM »

Because I-180 is not part of the legacy I-network (eligible for 90% matching funds for maintenance), it is only eligible for 80% matching funds under most of the fed formulas, same as if it were a state or US highway. For all practical purposes, it is not going to cost the feds or the state any more or less $ if the bridge remains an interstate or gets decommissioned as an interstate. It can still be a federal aid route (as are most IL state routes) even if it's not an interstate. As I said before, it's a fairly narrow bridge for a 4 -lane and it is now freshly reconstructed, so it doesn't need any serious work for the next few decades.

Lane removal on either side of the bridge could save money in the long run but would be more expensive in the short run. Many of the exit/entrance ramps and signs would need to be reconfigured as well as the removal, hauling and disposal or stockpiling of the old pavement, and restoration of the pavement area being removed. And probably wider shoulders added for the pavement that remains, on the former inside lane.
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SEWIGuy

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Re: GAO in 1970: I-180 in Illinois Should Not Have Been Approved
« Reply #53 on: September 22, 2021, 09:04:32 AM »

Do the locks even operate above De Pere? There are drawbridges all the way to OshKosh until you reach the Tribal Heritage Bridge (I-41). And that definitely wasn't built to Federal standards for a waterway.

One of those lock sets between De Pere and Kaukauna is permanently closed to try and restrict the movement of invasive species from the Great Lakes deeper into the Fox River system.  Sea lampreys in particular.  I forget which lock it is, though.


The Rapide Croche lock, just above Wrightstown, has been closed by state law since the 1980s and doesn't look likely to open anytime soon.  The Menasha lock, which is the first lock exiting Lake Winnebago, has been closed for the last couple of years due to the round goby invasive species in the Fox River.  They want to keep them out of the lake to protect the lake sturgeon fishery.  (The goby are prolific fish egg eaters, and the sturgeon spawn very slowly.)  They are trying to find a way to reopen that lock but it still looks to be a few years away.
« Last Edit: September 22, 2021, 11:21:31 AM by SEWIGuy »
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