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Road Trips / Re: 2024 Road Trip Plans
Last post by Hunty2022 - April 20, 2024, 08:22:19 PM
I've got a trip to the nation's capital city tomorrow!!
Traffic Control / Re: Unique, Odd, or Interestin...
Last post by Rothman - April 20, 2024, 08:11:49 PM
Quote from: roadman65 on April 20, 2024, 03:17:01 PMTA has a truck stop in Baltimore off I-95 at O Donnell Street that is approved by the state as a public rest area just as this Petro Truck is above^^^.

Utah used to partnership with private businesses to have official Rest Stops that would be signed on interstates.

However none with a freeway type of gantry like the one in Waterloo, NY though.

Doubt that this Petro Truck Stop is not "approved by the State" as a public rest area.  It doesn't show up on the Thruway's map and, in any matter, the Thruway =/= "the State," since it is a public authority.
Off-Topic / Re: Buc-ees outside of Texas.
Last post by SSOWorld - April 20, 2024, 08:11:20 PM
Quote from: Jim on April 11, 2024, 08:01:35 PMClean bathrooms vs. "No thanks" bathrooms.
For the Clean Bathrooms - they need 5 people just to clean those huge rooms hourly
Weather / Re: Earthquakes and Volcanoes
Last post by kalvado - April 20, 2024, 08:07:33 PM
Off-Topic / Re: Buc-ees outside of Texas.
Last post by Rothman - April 20, 2024, 08:07:06 PM
South of the Border isn't already obsolete?  Sad to see it slowly go kaput.
Great Lakes and Ohio Valley / Re: Michigan Notes
Last post by michiganguy123 - April 20, 2024, 07:31:58 PM
Quote from: JREwing78 on April 20, 2024, 06:19:20 PM
Quote from: michiganguy123 on April 20, 2024, 01:48:58 PMIs there a way to propose the state to set some more rural highways to 65mph? Lots more highways could be increased than what they included in the bill from 2017.
Leaning on your state representative and senator is a good place to start, particularly if they're a member from Up North or Da U.P., eh! Building a coalition to lobby said legislators is another good step.

What you're up against, however, are folks who have heavy-hitting lobbyists at hand (large insurers, environmentalists, and so on) who are disinterested in raising speed limits due to the safety implications. The original 2017 legislation that opened up the higher speed limits didn't allow said limits to be expanded to other roadways, so you have to go back to the legislature to fix that issue.

I also suspect Gov. Whitmer isn't in a hurry to approve higher speed limits, but who knows. She might surprise us.

I would be fine with a speed limit boost on those state highways that met certain design standards:
  • no stoplights/roundabouts (can drop speed limit to 55 mph 1/2 mile from signals/roundabouts)
  • 12 foot travel lanes with 10-foot shoulders (min 3' paved)
  • rumble strips both along the centerline and on shoulders
  • minimum sight distance, both straight ahead and through curves
  • limit side-road/driveway approaches to no more than 20 per mile
  • minimum amount of mowed grassy runoff area, or guardrails where sufficient runoff is impractical

I would identify M-123 north of M-28 as being ineligible for a 65 mph speed limit, for example, due to lack of shoulder width and clear runoff area (though apparently it was sufficient for MDOT's purposes in 2017). However, M-26, M-38, US-41 (excepting obvious areas like through Baraga and L'anse, Champion, etc), and US-141 are capable. Ditto the existing sections of US-2 in rural areas between Iron River and Escanaba not yet posted for 65, M-94, and M-35 south of Gwinn.

I would be less enthusiastic about pushing for higher speed limits south of US-10. Some highways, like M-60 east of M-40 or M-52 are built to high enough standards to pull it off. Others, like M-43 in Barry County, are too narrow and have poor sight distance. Others are simply not rural enough to qualify (too many homes/driveways, too many cross-streets, etc).

I would consider 4-lane divided highways for the upgrade given sufficient safety measures were in place. US-127 between Ithaca and St. Johns is a good example (no stoplights, limited side-road/driveway access, limited cross-traffic).

What I'm looking for are areas where a higher speed limit is unlikely to result in massive increases in accidents. Otherwise it would spark an outcry that would result in speed limits being slashed back down. That does no good for anyone.

There's still definitely some highways south of US-10 that could be included in a newer bill, M-20 from New Era to US-131 is a good example, when we were doing a trip up north that was so boring to drive all the way, it's a very straight highway with few curves and 2 towns, and less than 5000 vehicles per day. I've also driven the entirety of 2-lane US-10 and would probably be fine for 65mph (ending at Scottville), although there are more towns, and MDOT doesn't seem to like to increase the speed limit of highways that go anywhere near towns... The entire thumb region could be 65mph too, but was ignored in 2017.

Really all they have to do is look at their own aadt map and increase the speed limit on all the yellow/tan highways (under 5000-6000AADT which seems to be the limit they used for 65mph)

I feel like the only reason they skipped many highways that would be fine was because there was a set limit of mileage in the bill they couldn't go over.
Weather / Re: Earthquakes and Volcanoes
Last post by bing101 - April 20, 2024, 07:29:42 PM

Here is an update on the Indonesian volcano.

QuoteMANADO, Indonesia (AP) — More than 2,100 people living near an erupting on Indonesia's Sulawesi Island were evacuated Friday due to the dangers of spreading ash, falling rocks, hot volcanic clouds and the possibility of a tsunami.
Indonesia's Center for Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation recorded at least three eruptions since Friday afternoon, with the maximum height of the eruption column reaching 1,200 meters (3,900 feet).
An international airport in Manado city, less than 100 kilometers (60 miles) from the erupting Mount Ruang, is still temporarily closed as volcanic ash was spewed into the air.
Satellite imagery from the Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency shows the ash has spread to the west, northwest, northeast and southeast, covering Manado and North Minahasa, according to a statement from Indonesia's Transportation Ministry
Great Lakes and Ohio Valley / Re: Madison Area
Last post by Big John - April 20, 2024, 07:25:57 PM
^^ For your first item, WisDOT is adding DDIs at several interchanges in the I-41 expansion project, including Ballard Rd, identified as a school route for pedestrians. So the inconsistency is there.
Great Lakes and Ohio Valley / Re: Madison Area
Last post by JREwing78 - April 20, 2024, 07:12:39 PM
Some thoughts:
- On what planet do pedestrians and bikes have any business existing on US-51 south of E. Washington Ave (US-151)? That is, apparently, a justification for not doing a diverging diamond interchange at Hwy 30.

- The jughandle option at US-151, honestly, is a good plan. It's addressing the majority of the issues with turning traffic without absurdly inflating the price tag. It doesn't preclude a future grade separation of NBD US-51 should that become necessary.

- I'm amused at the bus-only passage connecting Mendota St to Anderson St and US-51. It makes total sense to prevent people from using Mendota St as a back-way onto eastbound E. Washington Ave. I'm curious how it's going to be executed - I presume in the form of a gate or barrier activated by the bus.
Central States / Re: Oklahoma
Last post by Bobby5280 - April 20, 2024, 07:04:26 PM
Quote from: rte66manJust because Lawton "seems" to be getting the short end of the stick from ODOT doesn't mean the rest of the SW quadrant is ignored.

Lawton has been getting the short end of the stick for a LOT of things, including highway funding. There is no "seems" about it. And, yeah, Rogers Lane absolutely is going to get a lot more dangerous to drive on once all those trucks from Goodyear and the other industrial plants have direct access to it.

I'll agree about Loyd Benson unfairly pulling strings to get US-183 four-laned from Frederick to Snyder over 20 years ago. But quite a bit of US-183 from Snyder to Clinton is still 2-laned. ODOT has been slowly expanding segments of it. A section South of New Cordell is pretty new. Back in the 1990's some state lawmakers and other rich people with connections were trying to get new turnpikes built from Snyder to Clinton and from Duncan to Davis. Those efforts failed. OK-7 is four-laned between Lawton and Duncan (and rightfully so), but OK-7 is still a 2-lane road from Duncan to Davis.

Overall, that hardly makes Southwest Oklahoma the "king of pork barrel spending" on highway funding.

Oklahoma has all kinds of other sections of 4-lane divided rural highways elsewhere around the state. Some of the rural 4-lane projects that have been built were built due to fatal collisions happening in certain locations. I know for a fact the 4-lane expansion of OK-49 in Medicine Park (from I-44 to the OK-58 intersection) was done in response to a rising number head-on collisions there.

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