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Author Topic: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis  (Read 5448 times)

Hot Rod Hootenanny

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #25 on: October 27, 2021, 08:50:32 PM »

Baton Rouge has just 2 Mississippi River crossings.
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Bobby5280

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #26 on: October 27, 2021, 11:25:42 PM »

One other problem with Memphis and its 2 outdated Mississippi River bridge crossings is the next nearest crossings North and South of Memphis are pretty far away. The I-155 crossing (the Caruthersville Bridge) is over 70 miles up river from I-40. The US-49 Helena Bridge is over 50 miles South of I-55.

Baton Rouge has the old I-10 and I-110 bridges in town. But the newer John James Audubon Bridge (LA-10) isn't very far North. The Sunshine Bridge (LA-70) isn't too far to the South.
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MikieTimT

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #27 on: October 28, 2021, 09:55:39 AM »

One other problem with Memphis and its 2 outdated Mississippi River bridge crossings is the next nearest crossings North and South of Memphis are pretty far away. The I-155 crossing (the Caruthersville Bridge) is over 70 miles up river from I-40. The US-49 Helena Bridge is over 50 miles South of I-55.

Baton Rouge has the old I-10 and I-110 bridges in town. But the newer John James Audubon Bridge (LA-10) isn't very far North. The Sunshine Bridge (LA-70) isn't too far to the South.

And the issue with I-155 is that it's right next to where the last "big one" happened, so it's unlikely that it would be usable in the event of another 8+ magnitude quake.  For that matter, anything that big probably has widespread impacts on I-57, I-55, I-69, I-24, I-40, various US highway bridges around Cairo, some dams in the Lake City, KY area, etc. as well as impacts in the Memphis/AR/MS areas.  I don't know that it's possible to mitigate the infrastructure of a depressed part of the country well enough to prevent widespread travel issues, not to mention the likely lack of fuel, food, and other services that anyone transiting would require as well.  However, a loop around Memphis (particularly a southern bypass connecting I-269/I-22) would make for a better flow around a city I generally dread going through.  It's bad enough that I sometimes choose to go through Pine Bluff, Lake Village, and Tallulah, LA instead for beach vacations to AL/FL.  And no one takes that route for the scenery.
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MikeTheActuary

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #28 on: October 28, 2021, 10:21:52 AM »

Yeah, any extension of the Sam Cooper Blvd freeway is a dead issue. Building a 2.5 mile tunnel from the I-40/I-240 interchange, under Overton Park and to the Sam Cooper Blvd freeway stub would cost billions. That kind of money could be devoted to far bigger needs in the Memphis area.

Finally putting the nail in the coffin in extending roads along the western portion of the aborted I-40 corridor was the last big hurdle that had to be crossed before TDOT reworked the western I-40/I-240 interchange.  There have been discussions in the past couple years about how to develop the right-of-way immediately east of the interchange,  with the neighborhood wanting a park (because they're in a bit of a "park desert"), and developers wanting to build housing given that the neighborhood is seeing a revitalization, thanks to the successful redevelopment of the old Sears Crosstown facility.
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MikeTheActuary

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #29 on: October 28, 2021, 10:25:15 AM »

One other problem with Memphis and its 2 outdated Mississippi River bridge crossings is the next nearest crossings North and South of Memphis are pretty far away. The I-155 crossing (the Caruthersville Bridge) is over 70 miles up river from I-40. The US-49 Helena Bridge is over 50 miles South of I-55.

Baton Rouge has the old I-10 and I-110 bridges in town. But the newer John James Audubon Bridge (LA-10) isn't very far North. The Sunshine Bridge (LA-70) isn't too far to the South.

And the issue with I-155 is that it's right next to where the last "big one" happened, so it's unlikely that it would be usable in the event of another 8+ magnitude quake.  For that matter, anything that big probably has widespread impacts on I-57, I-55, I-69, I-24, I-40, various US highway bridges around Cairo, some dams in the Lake City, KY area, etc. as well as impacts in the Memphis/AR/MS areas.  I don't know that it's possible to mitigate the infrastructure of a depressed part of the country well enough to prevent widespread travel issues, not to mention the likely lack of fuel, food, and other services that anyone transiting would require as well.  However, a loop around Memphis (particularly a southern bypass connecting I-269/I-22) would make for a better flow around a city I generally dread going through.  It's bad enough that I sometimes choose to go through Pine Bluff, Lake Village, and Tallulah, LA instead for beach vacations to AL/FL.  And no one takes that route for the scenery.

When talking about earthquake vs infrastructure concerns in that part of the country, it's worth noting that the regional geology means that liquefaction is a much bigger concern there than in other places exposed to the risk of big earthquakes.
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rlb2024

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #30 on: October 28, 2021, 10:47:44 AM »

One other problem with Memphis and its 2 outdated Mississippi River bridge crossings is the next nearest crossings North and South of Memphis are pretty far away. The I-155 crossing (the Caruthersville Bridge) is over 70 miles up river from I-40. The US-49 Helena Bridge is over 50 miles South of I-55.

Baton Rouge has the old I-10 and I-110 bridges in town. But the newer John James Audubon Bridge (LA-10) isn't very far North. The Sunshine Bridge (LA-70) isn't too far to the South.
True, but the roads to get to both of those bridges -- especially on the west side of the river -- are a royal pain with very limited capacity.
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MikieTimT

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #31 on: October 28, 2021, 11:46:44 AM »


When talking about earthquake vs infrastructure concerns in that part of the country, it's worth noting that the regional geology means that liquefaction is a much bigger concern there than in other places exposed to the risk of big earthquakes.

Put my response in the thread more appropriate for this tangent:https://www.aaroads.com/forum/index.php?topic=30360.msg2675876#msg2675876
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CoreySamson

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #32 on: October 28, 2021, 01:08:26 PM »

One other problem with Memphis and its 2 outdated Mississippi River bridge crossings is the next nearest crossings North and South of Memphis are pretty far away. The I-155 crossing (the Caruthersville Bridge) is over 70 miles up river from I-40. The US-49 Helena Bridge is over 50 miles South of I-55.

Baton Rouge has the old I-10 and I-110 bridges in town. But the newer John James Audubon Bridge (LA-10) isn't very far North. The Sunshine Bridge (LA-70) isn't too far to the South.
Counterpoint: The John James Audubon Bridge and Sunshine Bridge are too far away from Baton Rouge proper to be useful to it (or any thru traffic, for that matter), much like how the I-155 and Helena crossings are to Memphis. The LA-10 bridge is almost completely abandoned, testifying to its uselessness on a national level. It would be a dumb idea to bypass Baton Rouge on that bridge or the Sunshine Bridge, but at least you could use the Helena or Caruthersville bridges to bypass Memphis in a pinch. If anything, the situations for both cities are very similar.

Further discussion about the Baton Rouge-Memphis debate can go in this thread I made a couple months ago:
https://www.aaroads.com/forum/index.php?topic=28262

Echostatic

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #33 on: October 28, 2021, 02:00:34 PM »

The LA 10 bridge has an ADT of just over 5k. Hardly abandoned. The US 190 bridge in Baton Rouge itself has just over 7k. I-10 is of course much much busier with over 100,000 crossings daily.

mrsman

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #34 on: December 28, 2021, 03:31:59 PM »

The City of Memphis actually owns the road instead of TDOT. And good luck trying to assign a route number to it, x40 or not.

Following this conversation about the lack of a number for Sam Cooper Blvd.  [Sorry, I'm behind on my forum reading!]

Anyway, as mentioned upthread having a shield of some sort is very compact and removes a lot of the wordiness of "Sam Cooper Blvd" at the 40/240 interchange.  So while the idea of I-540 or TN-540 seem to be a really good way of dealing with this, Henry correctly notes that this roadway is not owned by TDOT.

So I have two possible suggestions on addressing this:

Memphis-540 shields.  This has to be somewhat unique.  The closest similar shield is the Clark County-215 near Las Vegas that uses the blue pentagon county shield.  It is also a freeway that is not also a state highway.

https://www.google.com/maps/@36.2744667,-115.0482918,3a,15y,278.69h,99.75t/data=!3m7!1e1!3m5!1sAdRUsWgGGoFH0x1vnwJyFw!2e0!6shttps:%2F%2Fstreetviewpixels-pa.googleapis.com%2Fv1%2Fthumbnail%3Fpanoid%3DAdRUsWgGGoFH0x1vnwJyFw%26cb_client%3Dmaps_sv.tactile.gps%26w%3D203%26h%3D100%26yaw%3D32.485462%26pitch%3D0%26thumbfov%3D100!7i16384!8i8192

Memphis-SC shields.  No number, but still a shield with a symbol.  The closest corollaries to this that I can think of are the Long Island Parkways with their own unique shields, that highlight the name of the parkway with letters. 

https://www.google.com/maps/@40.8982338,-73.2673845,3a,15y,142.91h,92.21t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sc_NT_MOzcDpZMPKCUSVOSw!2e0!7i13312!8i6656
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CoolAngrybirdsrio4

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #35 on: December 29, 2021, 02:51:06 AM »

Yeah, any extension of the Sam Cooper Blvd freeway is a dead issue. Building a 2.5 mile tunnel from the I-40/I-240 interchange, under Overton Park and to the Sam Cooper Blvd freeway stub would cost billions. That kind of money could be devoted to far bigger needs in the Memphis area.

New Mississippi River bridge crossings are badly needed for I-55 and even I-40. Plus I think I-269 needs to two Mississippi River crossings of its own both North and South of the Memphis area; the route should be a full outer loop of Memphis. Then there is the issue of I-22. That could be routed along a Western I-269 to I-40 in Arkansas. Or they could keep chipping away at the Lamar Avenue problem. I-22 (or a spur of it) needs to be completed to I-240. Memphis International Airport needs improved access to both I-240 and I-22. The trick is how to deliver on that. Upgrades along Winchester Road and/or Democrat Rd wouldn't be easy. But we're talking about a major shipping hub in this vicinity.

When the Hernando De Soto (I-40) Bridge closed back in the summer, traffic built up on the older Memphis & Arkansas (I-55) bridge, and there were safety concerns of that bridge as well. Memphis easily needs new bridges and soon, especially when the next crossings are dozens if not near a hundred miles away. Extending the Outer Loop for Memphis into Arkansas could solve this by requiring another 2 bridges (eventually).
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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #36 on: December 29, 2021, 11:57:37 AM »

One other problem with Memphis and its 2 outdated Mississippi River bridge crossings is the next nearest crossings North and South of Memphis are pretty far away. The I-155 crossing (the Caruthersville Bridge) is over 70 miles up river from I-40. The US-49 Helena Bridge is over 50 miles South of I-55.

Baton Rouge has the old I-10 and I-110 bridges in town. But the newer John James Audubon Bridge (LA-10) isn't very far North. The Sunshine Bridge (LA-70) isn't too far to the South.

And the issue with I-155 is that it's right next to where the last "big one" happened, so it's unlikely that it would be usable in the event of another 8+ magnitude quake.  For that matter, anything that big probably has widespread impacts on I-57, I-55, I-69, I-24, I-40, various US highway bridges around Cairo, some dams in the Lake City, KY area, etc. as well as impacts in the Memphis/AR/MS areas.  I don't know that it's possible to mitigate the infrastructure of a depressed part of the country well enough to prevent widespread travel issues, not to mention the likely lack of fuel, food, and other services that anyone transiting would require as well.  However, a loop around Memphis (particularly a southern bypass connecting I-269/I-22) would make for a better flow around a city I generally dread going through.  It's bad enough that I sometimes choose to go through Pine Bluff, Lake Village, and Tallulah, LA instead for beach vacations to AL/FL.  And no one takes that route for the scenery.
Hear hear!
As to why (other than money and whatnot) Memphis has only 2 river bridges to this day is anyone's guess. But getting back to route from roughly central AR to beach cities in MS, AL, FL, I also dread the drive through Memphis. Since I-269 opened up, I now stay away from Lamar (US 78) and instead take I-55 south out from Memphis and then go east on I-269 and on to I-22 to Birmingham; I-65 and then US 231 to I-10 or further down to Panama City Beach.
About Sam Cooper Blvd, I would just say keep it as is.
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Plutonic Panda

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #37 on: December 29, 2021, 11:59:43 AM »

About Sam Cooper Blvd, I would just say keep it as is.
A tunnel to connect to the western section part of I-40 wouldn’t upset me. ;)
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The Ghostbuster

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #38 on: December 29, 2021, 02:28:04 PM »

While a tunnel under Overton Park would have been nice, it is never going to happen. Sam Cooper Boulevard will likely remain as-is for the rest of eternity.
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Bobby5280

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #39 on: December 29, 2021, 02:48:32 PM »

A 2 mile long tunnel from the I-40/I-240/I-49 interchange, under Crosstown and Overton Park, to Sam Cooper Blvd would cost at least a couple or so billion dollars. For the first 1.5 miles of Sam Cooper Blvd going East from the park the road is an at-grade boulevard before finally turning into a freeway. And the freeway itself is not entirely up to Interstate standards.
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US71

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #40 on: December 29, 2021, 02:52:27 PM »

While a tunnel under Overton Park would have been nice, it is never going to happen. Sam Cooper Boulevard will likely remain as-is for the rest of eternity.

Only if a benevolent overlord wishes it so. ;)
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Plutonic Panda

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #41 on: December 29, 2021, 03:42:47 PM »

Memphis definitely has more pressing needs that’s for sure.
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rlb2024

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #42 on: December 29, 2021, 05:44:36 PM »

About Sam Cooper Blvd, I would just say keep it as is.
A tunnel to connect to the western section part of I-40 wouldn’t upset me. ;)
That was actually looked into back in the 70s.  It was deemed impractical for a number of reasons (money, exhaust fumes being dumped into the zoo, money, hard to build, money, etc.).
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Plutonic Panda

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #43 on: December 30, 2021, 12:14:54 AM »

About Sam Cooper Blvd, I would just say keep it as is.
A tunnel to connect to the western section part of I-40 wouldn’t upset me. ;)
That was actually looked into back in the 70s.  It was deemed impractical for a number of reasons (money, exhaust fumes being dumped into the zoo, money, hard to build, money, etc.).
Well to be fair they could dump the exhaust fumes elsewhere but alas that would require more money which is the main reason it isn’t and likely won’t be built any time soon if ever.
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rlb2024

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #44 on: January 10, 2022, 01:02:57 PM »

About Sam Cooper Blvd, I would just say keep it as is.
A tunnel to connect to the western section part of I-40 wouldn’t upset me. ;)
That was actually looked into back in the 70s.  It was deemed impractical for a number of reasons (money, exhaust fumes being dumped into the zoo, money, hard to build, money, etc.).
Well to be fair they could dump the exhaust fumes elsewhere but alas that would require more money which is the main reason it isn’t and likely won’t be built any time soon if ever.
I am very confident it won't ever be built.  That ship sailed long ago.  Way more pressing issues are a new bridge (or bridges) across the river.
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Brooks

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #45 on: January 10, 2022, 01:14:58 PM »

About Sam Cooper Blvd, I would just say keep it as is.
A tunnel to connect to the western section part of I-40 wouldn’t upset me. ;)
That was actually looked into back in the 70s.  It was deemed impractical for a number of reasons (money, exhaust fumes being dumped into the zoo, money, hard to build, money, etc.).
Well to be fair they could dump the exhaust fumes elsewhere but alas that would require more money which is the main reason it isn’t and likely won’t be built any time soon if ever.
I am very confident it won't ever be built.  That ship sailed long ago.  Way more pressing issues are a new bridge (or bridges) across the river.
As much as I would love to see it connected, it almost certainly won’t ever happen. Even if the money was there it would not surprise me if it went to Middle TN instead.
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bwana39

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #46 on: January 10, 2022, 11:38:42 PM »

The LA 10 bridge has an ADT of just over 5k. Hardly abandoned. The US 190 bridge in Baton Rouge itself has just over 7k. I-10 is of course much much busier with over 100,000 crossings daily.

No, the LA-10 (Audubon) Bridge has an ADT of around 3,000 (2019 NBI) which is lower than the LA-1 Atchafalaya River Bridge. The BR Long Bridge has an ADT over 20K. The 7K figure is more in line with the traffic at the Atchafalaya River on US-190. As a note the percentage of truck traffic on the Long Bridge is  low (around 5%)

Back to the Audubon Bridge.
US-90 Bus (NOLA) Over 175K
US-90 (NOLA) 37K (This figure feels really LOW!)
I-310 (Luling) 55K
LA-3213 (Gramercy) 12K
LA-70 (Sunshine Bridge) 16K
I-10 (Wilkinson) 101K
US-190 (BR) 20K
LA-10 (New Road) 3K
US-84 (Natchez) 12K
I-20 (Vicksburg) 11K (This number is all over the place. It runs as high as 30 K and as low as 11K)
US-82 (Greenville) 6K
US-49 (Helena)  5K
I-55 (Memphis) 55K
I-40 (Memphis) 37K
I-155 (Caruthersville) 8K

As an Aside, there are over 9K per day that cross the Red River on US-84 or 3,500 cross the red on US-67 half a mile from I-30.

The audubon bridge is not abandoned, but it has less traffic on its 4-lanes than many two laned bridges. Add that it is only about 30 miles from the nearest crossing. I still wonder why it was built where it was built.




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rlb2024

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #47 on: January 11, 2022, 03:55:17 PM »

The LA 10 bridge has an ADT of just over 5k. Hardly abandoned. The US 190 bridge in Baton Rouge itself has just over 7k. I-10 is of course much much busier with over 100,000 crossings daily.

No, the LA-10 (Audubon) Bridge has an ADT of around 3,000 (2019 NBI) which is lower than the LA-1 Atchafalaya River Bridge. The BR Long Bridge has an ADT over 20K. The 7K figure is more in line with the traffic at the Atchafalaya River on US-190. As a note the percentage of truck traffic on the Long Bridge is  low (around 5%)

Back to the Audubon Bridge.
US-90 Bus (NOLA) Over 175K
US-90 (NOLA) 37K (This figure feels really LOW!)
I-310 (Luling) 55K
LA-3213 (Gramercy) 12K
LA-70 (Sunshine Bridge) 16K
I-10 (Wilkinson) 101K
US-190 (BR) 20K
LA-10 (New Road) 3K
US-84 (Natchez) 12K
I-20 (Vicksburg) 11K (This number is all over the place. It runs as high as 30 K and as low as 11K)
US-82 (Greenville) 6K
US-49 (Helena)  5K
I-55 (Memphis) 55K
I-40 (Memphis) 37K
I-155 (Caruthersville) 8K

As an Aside, there are over 9K per day that cross the Red River on US-84 or 3,500 cross the red on US-67 half a mile from I-30.

The audubon bridge is not abandoned, but it has less traffic on its 4-lanes than many two laned bridges. Add that it is only about 30 miles from the nearest crossing. I still wonder why it was built where it was built.
It replaced a ferry crossing -- as did most of the bridges between Baton Rouge and New Orleans that have been built in the last 40 years.  The Sunshine Bridge was already there when I moved to Louisiana in 1981, but the I-310, Gramercy-Wallace, and Reserve-Edgard bridges are all newer and all replaced ferry boats that crossed the river.  Those ferry crossings were really treacherous in the winter fog season, and at least one was hit by a ship with devastating consequences.
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Hot Rod Hootenanny

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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #48 on: January 12, 2022, 01:33:26 PM »

And in the case of Audubon, you have Riverbend & Big Cajun power plants (on either side of the bridge) they wanted to improve access to.
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Re: Sam Cooper Boulevard Through Memphis
« Reply #49 on: January 17, 2022, 02:55:44 PM »

Putting this thing back on track.

Sam Cooper Boulevard does not go through Memphis. A lot of people would seem to like that to happen, but short of some sort of miracle (or disaster depending on how you see it), it is not going to happen.

50+ years ago, had they chosen a slightly different path past the park and zoo, it might have. In the 3rd millennium AD, it is not a happening thing!
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