AARoads Forum

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  

News:

New rules to ensure post quality. See this thread for details.

Author Topic: Do any DOT employees have contacts in the design department with selected DOTs?  (Read 1242 times)

Daniel Fiddler

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 458
  • https://dfroads.webador.com/

  • Age: 40
  • Location: Jackson, Tennessee
  • Last Login: January 24, 2022, 09:04:51 PM
    • DF Roads

Greetings!

I am curious if any DOT employees here have any contacts within the design departments of:

TDOT
FDOT
GDOT
KYDOT
ILDOT
INDOT
OHDOT
MIDOT
WIDOT
ALDOT

I am desiring to submit my map (https://www.google.com/maps/d/viewer?hl=en&mid=1C03FXvrg7DVARLSyPtMKticcL3b2p8-J&ll=36.702763491493826%2C-85.20150789999998&z=4) to them to review.

I have contacts with TDOT, although I am not sure if they are with the design department.  I can try them again though.  I don't have contacts with the others though.

Thanks!
Logged

Molandfreak

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 1743
  • Age: 27
  • Last Login: April 25, 2022, 12:28:12 AM

Thatís going to fall on deaf ears. Itís fun to think about what could have happened, but these highways have been established for a long time. Occasionally, someone with power dreams up a crazy idea like I-69, but none of that involved directly renumbering or re-routing a highway.
Logged

1

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 11745
  • Age: 23
  • Location: MA/NH border
  • Last Login: May 17, 2022, 09:42:58 PM
    • Flickr account

Also, it's KYTC.
Logged
Clinched

Traveled, plus
US ⒔50
MA ⒐2⒉40.9⒐10⒎10⒐1⒒1⒘1⒚14⒈159
NH 27,38,111A(E); CA133; NY366; GA 42,140; FL A1A; CT32; VT 5A; QC 16⒉16⒌263

Flickr: Click the globe under my avatar

Rothman

  • *
  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 9891
  • Last Login: May 17, 2022, 09:21:23 PM

Greetings!

I am curious if any DOT employees here have any contacts within the design departments of:

TDOT
FDOT
GDOT
KYDOT
ILDOT
INDOT
OHDOT
MIDOT
WIDOT
ALDOT

I am desiring to submit my map (https://www.google.com/maps/d/viewer?hl=en&mid=1C03FXvrg7DVARLSyPtMKticcL3b2p8-J&ll=36.702763491493826%2C-85.20150789999998&z=4) to them to review.

I have contacts with TDOT, although I am not sure if they are with the design department.  I can try them again though.  I don't have contacts with the others though.

Thanks!
Review for what, exactly?  That said, I do wonder what kind of response you'd get.  Probably "Thanks, but no thanks" in verbose form.
Logged
Please note: All comments here represent my own personal opinion and do not reflect the official position(s) of NYSDOT.

SEWIGuy

  • *
  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 2805
  • Notice: US-2 is not an interstate worthy corridor

  • Last Login: May 17, 2022, 09:09:59 PM

The current numberings aren't problems.  Why would they go through the expense of changing the route numbers?
Logged

tolbs17

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 4630
  • Age: 19
  • Location: Greenville, NC
  • Last Login: March 31, 2022, 07:24:24 PM

Fictional plans...I'm guessing this is to suggest them renumbering the grid? I wonder how the AASHTO would feel about that.
Logged

Daniel Fiddler

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 458
  • https://dfroads.webador.com/

  • Age: 40
  • Location: Jackson, Tennessee
  • Last Login: January 24, 2022, 09:04:51 PM
    • DF Roads

Not just new route numbers.  Review the map in more detail, zoom in, toggle layers.

New auxiliary routes, including a half beltway around Atlanta and 3/4 beltway around Chattanooga.

Widenings.

Speed limit increases.
Logged

Molandfreak

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 1743
  • Age: 27
  • Last Login: April 25, 2022, 12:28:12 AM

Not just new route numbers.  Review the map in more detail, zoom in, toggle layers.

New auxiliary routes, including a half beltway around Atlanta and 3/4 beltway around Chattanooga.

Widenings.

Speed limit increases.
And exactly zero of these things will become a reality due to one rando sending a fictional map to a bunch of state DOTs.
Logged

Scott5114

  • *
  • *
  • Online Online

  • Posts: 14894
  • Nit picker of unprecedented pedantry

  • Age: 32
  • Location: Norman, OK
  • Last Login: Today at 01:37:01 AM
    • Denexa 100% Plastic Playing Cards

As mentioned above, a "thanks but no thanks" response is probably the most likely outcome of going through the trouble to submit your desired improvements to state DOTs. This is not to say you shouldn't do it if you feel strongly about it. But keep in mind why a DOT may not be enthusiastic about your proposals:

Regarding route numbers. By default, state DOTs heavily prefer to keep the status quo in place when it comes to route numbers. While changes might make more sense and make the grid neater, actually changing a route number is a herculean and expensive endeavor. Not only do you have the cost of all the signs, there is the cost of labor of installing all of the signs, and while crews are doing that they're not free to work on other, potentially more important things like replacing safety-critical signage like stop signs, fixing pot holes, etc.

Then, there is the public outreach associated with the educating the public about the change. Businesses along the route may need to revise advertising materials, USPS may need to revise addresses, the word needs to get out to the DOT GIS department, Google, OSM, and Rand McNally... And even after all that the change may fail to catch on with the public. Go to St. Louis and you'll run into people who have no idea what I-64 is, but they can tell you how to get to Highway Farty. And, of course, the DOT is a government agency subject to politics; if a proposed renumbering scheme appears to have no benefit to the public, the DOT will be criticized for wasting taxpayer money, which could jeopardize the jobs of its leadership.

Basically, the DOT view is that unless there is an overriding concern that justifies all of this, route renumbering is to be avoided if at all possible.

New construction and widening. DOTs have a budget, of course. And they also have lots and lots of data on traffic volumes and even destination-origin points of traffic. They use that data to determine where to spend the dollars they have to maximize their effectiveness. Even where there is an identified need for a new construction highway and the funding to build it, determining the best place for a highway is more than you can do at home on Google Maps; it takes a staff of dozens of geologists and engineers to determine the exact alignment for a highway. And even that is sometimes not enough; local landowners can be a feisty bunch, and if enough of them are unhappy with the plans they can be blocked. And, of course, the DOT is a government agency subject to politics; if a DOT tries to build something that appears to have no benefit to the public, the DOT will be criticized for wasting taxpayer money, which could jeopardize the jobs of its leadership.

Speed limit increases. In many places maximum speed limits are set by the state Legislature. In Oklahoma, for instance, state law caps speed limits at 75 mph on freeways and 80 mph on turnpikes. Even if ODOT wanted to set a freeway's speed limit to 80 or even 85 mph, it would be illegal for them to do so. In other cases, local conditions have caused the DOT to lower speed limits, or local residents have even campaigned for them out of a perceived safety benefit. And, of course, the DOT is a government agency subject to politics; if a DOT tries to set a speed limit that the public feels is inappropriate, the DOT will be criticized for risking the safety of the populace, which could jeopardize the jobs of its leadership.

Constituency. How much a DOT will listen to you is, fairly or unfairly, a function of where you live. If you are in Tennessee, Tennessee DOT is, by default, obliged to make at least a token attempt listen to you because you can vote in Tennessee. Therefore, you can exert a small amount of influence over who the Governor is, and thus, who is in charge of TDOT. You are also responsible for paying taxes that TDOT uses to operate, so they have a degree of obligation to you to use that money responsibly.

Other state DOTs have no such obligation. If you can't vote in that state and pay no taxes there, they have no real reason to care what you want. Nothing you can do really carries much consequence to them, so they certainly will not jump to spend millions of dollars on your say-so, unless their data or comments from their citizens are already along the same lines of what you're asking for.
Logged

Daniel Fiddler

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 458
  • https://dfroads.webador.com/

  • Age: 40
  • Location: Jackson, Tennessee
  • Last Login: January 24, 2022, 09:04:51 PM
    • DF Roads

That makes complete sense.  Thanks!
Logged

hbelkins

  • *
  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 17512
  • It is well, it is well, with my soul.

  • Age: 60
  • Location: Kentucky
  • Last Login: Today at 12:11:41 AM
    • Millennium Highway

In the case of your Kentucky interstate requests, your best bet is to contact the office of Sen. Rand Paul. He has been behind most of the designations of the former toll roads as interstates.

Other than that, the proper contact for construction projects in Kentucky would be the state legislature. They are the ones who have final say on the state's construction plan. KYTC submits a proposal every biennium, but the legislature can add to and delete projects. My guess is that KYTC already has its plan pretty well ready to submit to the General Assembly for the 2022 budgetary session which starts next week, but individual legislators have influence on which projects get funded and prioritized.
Logged


I identify as vaccinated.

Rothman

  • *
  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 9891
  • Last Login: May 17, 2022, 09:21:23 PM

In the case of your Kentucky interstate requests, your best bet is to contact the office of Sen. Rand Paul. He has been behind most of the designations of the former toll roads as interstates.

Other than that, the proper contact for construction projects in Kentucky would be the state legislature. They are the ones who have final say on the state's construction plan. KYTC submits a proposal every biennium, but the legislature can add to and delete projects. My guess is that KYTC already has its plan pretty well ready to submit to the General Assembly for the 2022 budgetary session which starts next week, but individual legislators have influence on which projects get funded and prioritized.
Send a map of proposed routes to the State Legislature?  He'd need to figure out which ones and figure out a way for his proposals to rise to the importance of their other priorities.

I don't know where I'd even start to plant the seed of a designation change.  With NYSDOT, I'd think it would actually be the Policy Bureau rather than someone in Design or Engineering.
Logged
Please note: All comments here represent my own personal opinion and do not reflect the official position(s) of NYSDOT.

SkyPesos

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 4410
  • Age: 19
  • Location: Cincinnati, OH/Lafayette, IN
  • Last Login: Today at 01:25:02 AM

DOTs donít care about highway renumbering ideas, and they have no reason to. Thatís why almost all fictional stuff here stay in fictional.
Logged
My Fictional Highways

Fundamental Theorem of AARoads - Let "y" represent the elevation above sea level in a certain area. If "Δy" between the highest and lowest values of y equals to 0, it's Illinois.

tolbs17

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 4630
  • Age: 19
  • Location: Greenville, NC
  • Last Login: March 31, 2022, 07:24:24 PM

DOTs donít care about highway renumbering ideas, and they have no reason to. Thatís why almost all fictional stuff here stay in fictional.
Like if you want to as PDOT renumber I-99 it won't happen.
Logged

Daniel Fiddler

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 458
  • https://dfroads.webador.com/

  • Age: 40
  • Location: Jackson, Tennessee
  • Last Login: January 24, 2022, 09:04:51 PM
    • DF Roads

I attempted to e-mail Senator Rand Paul, his e-mail does not accept hyperlinks.  How can I share my map if I don't include a hyperlink?
Logged

jeffandnicole

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 13221
  • Age: 47
  • Location: South Jersey
  • Last Login: May 17, 2022, 10:23:15 PM

I attempted to e-mail Senator Rand Paul, his e-mail does not accept hyperlinks.  How can I share my map if I don't include a hyperlink?

You could make a written list of all your changes.
Logged

hbelkins

  • *
  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 17512
  • It is well, it is well, with my soul.

  • Age: 60
  • Location: Kentucky
  • Last Login: Today at 12:11:41 AM
    • Millennium Highway

In the case of your Kentucky interstate requests, your best bet is to contact the office of Sen. Rand Paul. He has been behind most of the designations of the former toll roads as interstates.

Other than that, the proper contact for construction projects in Kentucky would be the state legislature. They are the ones who have final say on the state's construction plan. KYTC submits a proposal every biennium, but the legislature can add to and delete projects. My guess is that KYTC already has its plan pretty well ready to submit to the General Assembly for the 2022 budgetary session which starts next week, but individual legislators have influence on which projects get funded and prioritized.
Send a map of proposed routes to the State Legislature?  He'd need to figure out which ones and figure out a way for his proposals to rise to the importance of their other priorities.

I don't know where I'd even start to plant the seed of a designation change.  With NYSDOT, I'd think it would actually be the Policy Bureau rather than someone in Design or Engineering.

That's the thing: Construction projects developed by the agency, or area development districts or MPOs go through all sorts of hurdles and bureaucracy before they ever get included in a submitted plan. There are all sorts of forms to fill out (I still have to figure out the differences between PIFs and CHAFs) and Kentucky has complicated the process by implementing a priority scoring system called SHIFT.

The legislature, OTOH, can do what it wants, and the executive branch is statutorily bound to implement the directives of the legislative branch. The agency can rank adding lanes to I-65 between Louisville and Elizabethtown at the top of its priority and funding list, but if the General Assembly approves a plan that instead calls for building a new road between Harlan and Hazard as its top project, then the legislation controls. When Kentuckians advocate for projects that aren't included in the six-year plan, they are advised to contact their legislators to get a project added.

In terms of route renumbering, in Kentucky's case, the Division of Planning makes those determinations. Occasionally they will undertake renumbering efforts for a variety of reasons. The most recent ones I can think of was the relocation of KY 227 in Owen County from the traditional US 227 route (a concurrency with US 127 and KY 36 between Owenton and New Liberty) to a new route along a different route, which I think was numbered KY 978; and the renumbering of KY 57 in Nicholas and Fleming counties to eliminate a gap at the Licking River and making KY 57 a continuous route. It involved having KY 57 take over the route of a 3xxx-series route and a concurrency with KY 32. A pretty compelling logical case would have to be made for a renumbering.
Logged


I identify as vaccinated.

Molandfreak

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 1743
  • Age: 27
  • Last Login: April 25, 2022, 12:28:12 AM

If you want a shot at this actually being read and taken seriously, I would also suggest removing the renumbering ideas from the email you send.
Logged

 


Opinions expressed here on belong solely to the poster and do not represent or reflect the opinions or beliefs of AARoads, its creators and/or associates.