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Author Topic: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)  (Read 2641 times)

TheStranger

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #25 on: September 20, 2022, 03:22:19 PM »


Are there any pre-interstate divided highway segments where one of the original carriageways still exists as the frontage road but the I-freeway was built over the other carriageway?  (Such as with much of old M-78 in Michigan when I-69 was built between Charlotte and Perry.)


Close but not quite in California:

Cajon Boulevard (historic 66/91/395) and I-15 (built as 15/66/91/395 in the 1950s/1960s) north of Devore in San Bernardino County.

Cajon actually used to be a four lane divided boulevard, then when the highways were moved to the I-15 alignment, the older divided route basically became one carriageway as a 2-lane road, and the other carraigeway closed off.

For decades there was a segment of Cajon cut off in Devore by the building of I-15 south of there in the 1970s, but a new connection (not historic 66/91/395) was put up in just the last 3-4 years.
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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #26 on: September 20, 2022, 06:25:22 PM »

Lots of people.  In particular many members of the Freeways of Los Angeles Facebook Group last night, which got my mind going on creating this thread.

It would be fair to say that some people (both older and younger) have adopted a view of I-40 as the evil stepchild that bypassed the Mother Road through the Painted Desert.  But even in Arizona, there are plenty of places where I-40 is on the Mother Road alignment (and some where the "Mother Road" appears to be a frontage road).  We get these same type of myths in railroading.

It often goes further than that.  A lot of the late alignments of US 66 were actually concurrent with I-40.  That being the case, there are examples where an alignment of I-40 would also be a legit generational alignment of US 66.  To me denying that stuff like that was a thing was thing is selling the life and service history of 66 short. 

Pertaining to Arizona, at least much of the US 66 fandom in-state does acknowledge the inherited NOTR segments and when they were bypassed largely during the 1930s.  There is at least a more accurate community account as to when that transition occurred, and the alignments modernized from the NOTR (excepting Oatman Highway which was never part of the NOTR).

The frontage roads are often not the same pavement as the original highway.  On occasion the frontage road will be the original pavement but not always.  Not only that when the highway has to make a curve to accommodate lets say I-40 that curve is usually not indicative of US 66.  I-40 itself would be indicative of the original pavement.

Are there any pre-interstate divided highway segments where one of the original carriageways still exists as the frontage road but the I-freeway was built over the other carriageway?  (Such as with much of old M-78 in Michigan when I-69 was built between Charlotte and Perry.)

Also:  What is NOTR?

I think there are some segments in IL that were like this.  One carriageway is I-55 and the other carriageway is the frontage road.
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Dirt Roads

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #27 on: September 20, 2022, 06:42:21 PM »

Are there any pre-interstate divided highway segments where one of the original carriageways still exists as the frontage road but the I-freeway was built over the other carriageway?  (Such as with much of old M-78 in Michigan when I-69 was built between Charlotte and Perry.)

There's one short stretch of four-laned US-301 along I-95 near the Carson exit (Exit 37) in Prince George County, Virginia.  Due to the exit, the Interstate alignment veers off slightly to the east of the US-301 fourlane stretch, such that only a tiny portion of US-301 north and south of the exit actually is glued to the side of I-95 as a frontage road.  Otherwise, US-301 is a two-laned frontage road from just north of Jarratt (Exit 20) to just north of Templeton (Exit 41).  If recall correctly, much of this section of US-301 was actually four-laned before completion of I-95.
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Mapmikey

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #28 on: September 20, 2022, 07:25:17 PM »

Are there any pre-interstate divided highway segments where one of the original carriageways still exists as the frontage road but the I-freeway was built over the other carriageway?  (Such as with much of old M-78 in Michigan when I-69 was built between Charlotte and Perry.)

There's one short stretch of four-laned US-301 along I-95 near the Carson exit (Exit 37) in Prince George County, Virginia.  Due to the exit, the Interstate alignment veers off slightly to the east of the US-301 fourlane stretch, such that only a tiny portion of US-301 north and south of the exit actually is glued to the side of I-95 as a frontage road.  Otherwise, US-301 is a two-laned frontage road from just north of Jarratt (Exit 20) to just north of Templeton (Exit 41).  If recall correctly, much of this section of US-301 was actually four-laned before completion of I-95.

Yes, US 301 was 4-lanes from Emporia to VA 35 for years before I-95 was there. I-95 SB from near Jarratt to VA 35 is mostly on the old 301 NB alignment.

I-77/81 also does this with some of the former 4-laned US 11/52.

I-64 between Exit 231-238 also did this with the former VA 168 with F-137 surviving.
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SkyPesos

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #29 on: September 20, 2022, 09:04:37 PM »

Regarding NOTR that is an acronym for National Old Trails Road.  It largely was the forerunner for what became US Route 66 from Santa Fe west Los Angeles.  A lot of the NOTR corridor west from Santa Fe is a match for early US Route 66 alignments but there are exceptions like Oatman Highway and Los Angeles.
How well is that National Old Trails Road signed out west? NOTR is mostly US 40 here in the eastern half, except I haven't seen that much signage for it (not even close to the number of National Road references I've seen).
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Quillz

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #30 on: September 20, 2022, 09:08:05 PM »

Itís signed fairly well as it follows the 15 from Victorville to Barstow. East of there, dunno.
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #31 on: September 20, 2022, 09:45:09 PM »

Itís signed fairly well as it follows the 15 from Victorville to Barstow. East of there, dunno.

Irony being what is currently signed as National Old Trails Road (on the street blades of County Route 66) east of Barstow almost entirely consists of 1930s-onward era US Route 66 alignments.  The actual NOTR alignments east of Barstow are basically now just high clearance dirt roads which can be seen on the ACSC Map on pages 11-15:

https://archive.org/details/nationaloldtrail00autorich/page/n14/mode/1up?view=theater
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mgk920

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #32 on: September 20, 2022, 11:31:54 PM »

Lots of people.  In particular many members of the Freeways of Los Angeles Facebook Group last night, which got my mind going on creating this thread.

It would be fair to say that some people (both older and younger) have adopted a view of I-40 as the evil stepchild that bypassed the Mother Road through the Painted Desert.  But even in Arizona, there are plenty of places where I-40 is on the Mother Road alignment (and some where the "Mother Road" appears to be a frontage road).  We get these same type of myths in railroading.

It often goes further than that.  A lot of the late alignments of US 66 were actually concurrent with I-40.  That being the case, there are examples where an alignment of I-40 would also be a legit generational alignment of US 66.  To me denying that stuff like that was a thing was thing is selling the life and service history of 66 short. 

Pertaining to Arizona, at least much of the US 66 fandom in-state does acknowledge the inherited NOTR segments and when they were bypassed largely during the 1930s.  There is at least a more accurate community account as to when that transition occurred, and the alignments modernized from the NOTR (excepting Oatman Highway which was never part of the NOTR).

The frontage roads are often not the same pavement as the original highway.  On occasion the frontage road will be the original pavement but not always.  Not only that when the highway has to make a curve to accommodate lets say I-40 that curve is usually not indicative of US 66.  I-40 itself would be indicative of the original pavement.

Are there any pre-interstate divided highway segments where one of the original carriageways still exists as the frontage road but the I-freeway was built over the other carriageway?  (Such as with much of old M-78 in Michigan when I-69 was built between Charlotte and Perry.)

Also:  What is NOTR?

I think there are some segments in IL that were like this.  One carriageway is I-55 and the other carriageway is the frontage road.

Much of I-55 between Springfield, IL and a short distance southwest of Joliet, IL. is that way, except that I-55 was built on an entirely new ROW and grade and much of what survives of the previous US 66 is now a local frontage/access road, with one of the old roadways being mostly abandoned and removed, but the grade is mostly still there.  Sections of NE bound I-55 were built using part of the old US 66 ROW.  Also a section of I-55 southwest of Bloomington/Normal, IL where I-55 was built on the SE side of old US 66.  Former US 66 through the Bloomington/Normal area itself is now a major city street.

Mike
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pderocco

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #33 on: September 21, 2022, 11:58:20 PM »

Itís signed fairly well as it follows the 15 from Victorville to Barstow. East of there, dunno.

Not exactly. From Air Expwy up to Hinkley Rd, it's signed as National Trails Hwy, but those are ordinary street signs. They have put up CR-66 signs along that road, though. It's been a long time since I've driven the rest of the road east or west of there, so I don't know how many CR signs they've put up along the entire road in California.
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Avalanchez71

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #34 on: September 22, 2022, 12:34:04 AM »

The section from Essex to Needles via Goffs Road wasn't even part of US 66 as per the 1963 map submitted to ASHO.  The 1963 request to truncate US 99 from LA to Calexico included a map that showed the aforementioned section of US 66.  US 66 was already off of that alignment via Goffs Road.
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #35 on: September 22, 2022, 12:47:51 AM »

The section from Essex to Needles via Goffs Road wasn't even part of US 66 as per the 1963 map submitted to ASHO.  The 1963 request to truncate US 99 from LA to Calexico included a map that showed the aforementioned section of US 66.  US 66 was already off of that alignment via Goffs Road.

There is debate how closely the Goffs section follows the late NOTR/early US 66.  It isn't exact but it is probably close even with the modern improvements to count.  Fenner, Goffs, Bannock and Kleinfelter were bypassed during the 1930s by the direct line to Essex.
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Avalanchez71

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #36 on: September 22, 2022, 01:09:07 AM »

The section from Essex to Needles via Goffs Road wasn't even part of US 66 as per the 1963 map submitted to ASHO.  The 1963 request to truncate US 99 from LA to Calexico included a map that showed the aforementioned section of US 66.  US 66 was already off of that alignment via Goffs Road.

There is debate how closely the Goffs section follows the late NOTR/early US 66.  It isn't exact but it is probably close even with the modern improvements to count.  Fenner, Goffs, Bannock and Kleinfelter were bypassed during the 1930s by the direct line to Essex.
So it would seem to me that most folks that are chasing the US 66 (route 66) dream want to be told what the route was without finding out what the route was.
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #37 on: September 22, 2022, 01:59:27 AM »

The section from Essex to Needles via Goffs Road wasn't even part of US 66 as per the 1963 map submitted to ASHO.  The 1963 request to truncate US 99 from LA to Calexico included a map that showed the aforementioned section of US 66.  US 66 was already off of that alignment via Goffs Road.

There is debate how closely the Goffs section follows the late NOTR/early US 66.  It isn't exact but it is probably close even with the modern improvements to count.  Fenner, Goffs, Bannock and Kleinfelter were bypassed during the 1930s by the direct line to Essex.
So it would seem to me that most folks that are chasing the US 66 (route 66) dream want to be told what the route was without finding out what the route was.

Seemingly some sort of detached perspective on what Americana was is the end goal for most.  I would imagine most have a vision of what US 66 was in their head and generally are unbothered if it meets with actual reality.
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ClassicHasClass

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #38 on: September 23, 2022, 09:51:35 AM »

Quote
so I don't know how many CR signs they've put up along the entire road in California.

For portions within the unincorporated area of San Bernardino county north of Victorville, which is a substantial portion of the road, practically all of it even as far out as Goffs up to the city limit of Needles (Needles is an incorporated city). When I was out on US 95 a few years back the junction was signed conspicuously. The county did a good job with that. I believe there's even some signage on the portion east of Needles up to the Colorado River.

The CR shields aren't in the city limits of Victorville or anywhere beyond that point south, and they obviously aren't on the CA 66 portion. Many of the cities have their own bespoke signage, though, including in Los Angeles county.
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TheStranger

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #39 on: September 23, 2022, 03:38:40 PM »

Quote
so I don't know how many CR signs they've put up along the entire road in California.

For portions within the unincorporated area of San Bernardino county north of Victorville, which is a substantial portion of the road, practically all of it even as far out as Goffs up to the city limit of Needles (Needles is an incorporated city). When I was out on US 95 a few years back the junction was signed conspicuously. The county did a good job with that. I believe there's even some signage on the portion east of Needles up to the Colorado River.

I do remember seeing CR 66 stuff entering Barstow in my big roadtrip last year, then some on that Barstow-Amboy stretch:
https://flickr.com/photos/csampang/albums/72157719853716044/with/51480380112/

CR 66 shield somewhere between Barstow and Ludlow
DSC_5991 by Chris Sampang, on Flickr

A few shield shots at Ludlow near a closed Dairy Queen
DSC_6026 by Chris Sampang, on Flickr
DSC_6029 by Chris Sampang, on Flickr
DSC_6031 by Chris Sampang, on Flickr
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Stephane Dumas

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #40 on: September 23, 2022, 05:32:26 PM »

Myth:  The Grapes of Wrath is mainly about US Route 66.
Reality:  Sort of, for whatever reason the book doesn't mention US Route 466 over Tehachapi Pass.  I always wondered if Steinbeck just considered all the X66 routes to be part of US Route 66? 


Steinbeck didn't care (IMO) about being factually accurate about Route 66.  It was used as a symbol for a road to paradise.

Or road to adventure as shown in the tv series Route 66.
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Avalanchez71

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #41 on: September 23, 2022, 05:33:29 PM »

Are folks stealing the CR 66 signs?
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #42 on: September 23, 2022, 07:49:18 PM »

Are folks stealing the CR 66 signs?

Maybe, I see too many in museums not to be suspicious.  All the same they donít pop up on eBay like the CA 66 shields do.
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pderocco

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #43 on: September 24, 2022, 05:12:54 AM »

Seemingly some sort of detached perspective on what Americana was is the end goal for most.  I would imagine most have a vision of what US 66 was in their head and generally are unbothered if it meets with actual reality.

One thing you see along the old US-66 east of Amboy is rock writing in the berm north of the road that guides storm runoff into the culverts under the road. (You also see this on CA-62 further south.) 15 years ago, I ran across this:



It turned out to refer to the charming web site of a young couple who had spent months exploring the entirety of route 66. I wish it still existed, but the link went dead some years ago. You can also see the writing in this ancient Street View imagery: https://goo.gl/maps/2i9VirHC7NJ22mbc7
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pderocco

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #44 on: September 24, 2022, 05:34:37 AM »

Unfortunately, much of the eastern part of the old US-66 in CA has been closed for years, and is likely to remain closed for a lot longer.

Isn't that something? In the middle of a drought, and Route 66 washes out. Only in California...
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bing101

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #45 on: September 24, 2022, 11:31:34 AM »

 

Myth:  US Route 66 was the most important US Route out west.
Reality:  This definitely isn't true.  In California US Route 66 wouldn't have even been in the top five of most important US Routes.  US Route 80 was by far more important US Route in Arizona. 


US-66 most important to the West?
If this is the case then Lincoln Highway, US-40, US-50,US-60 and US-70 would be important routes to join US-80 as most important routes heading to the West Coast from the East Coast.
US-101 and US-99 if it's in a North South direction within the Pacific Coast.
I would put US-66 in the same rankings as US-91, US-466, US-6 and US-395 and that it had regional importance but it was mainly a rural highway.
« Last Edit: September 24, 2022, 11:35:28 AM by bing101 »
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TheStranger

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #46 on: September 25, 2022, 01:06:24 AM »

Unfortunately, much of the eastern part of the old US-66 in CA has been closed for years, and is likely to remain closed for a lot longer.


I did see stuff last year regarding some funding for culvert reconstruction east of Amboy:
https://www.route66news.com/2020/07/25/engineering-pact-approved-for-10-new-route-66-bridges-in-amboy-essex-areas/
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pderocco

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #47 on: September 25, 2022, 07:52:54 PM »

Yeah, I saw a lot of stuff online about it, too. But it looks like they've got one guy with a shovel working on it, so it won't be done for a few years.

Odd that all these old bridges would die at the same time. Were they in a cult?
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Avalanchez71

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #48 on: September 25, 2022, 08:37:19 PM »

Isn't the current detour another former alignment of US 66 (I-40)?
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: US Route 66 (myth versus reality)
« Reply #49 on: September 25, 2022, 09:53:22 PM »

Isn't the current detour another former alignment of US 66 (I-40)?

Not between Ludlow and Fenner.  The rest of I-40 in California is later generation US 66.
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