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Author Topic: Proposed US 412 Upgrade  (Read 53700 times)

Bobby5280

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #425 on: January 29, 2022, 11:55:47 AM »

Quote from: MikieTimT
It's not the only good argument.  As delineated in the wording of the legislation, it wouldn't make sense to use I-50.  However, there is much evidence outside of just this legislation that there are plans, for good reason too I might add, to extend eastward from I-49.  ISTEA made all of US-412 from Tulsa to Nashville HPC #8, which means that the intent is to upgrade it to 4 lanes throughout.

Lots of those High Priority Corridors drawn up in legislation 20+ years ago are never going to happen, certainly not as full-blown Interstate routes. Lots of federal legislation ends up scuttled.

Arkansas may intend to upgrade US-412 across Northern Arkansas to 4 lanes, but the 4 lanes can be anything from an undivided 4-lane street to something divided with freeway exits. Chances are very minimal US-412 will upgraded to 100% limited access between Springdale (I-49) and Hayti (I-55). Simple undivided 4-lane upgrades will be difficult to build. I would expect people in the town of Henderson, just East of Mountain Home, would raise hell about highway construction through there.

There is a much better chance for US-60 across Southern Missouri from Springfield to Sikeston to get upgraded to full Interstate standards. But they've already been working on that corridor, building spot upgrades here and there, for decades. And it still has a long way to go before being an Interstate-class facility. US-412 across Northern Arkansas is a very long way behind US-60 in Southern Missouri in terms of corridor development.
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Scott5114

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #426 on: January 29, 2022, 02:22:41 PM »

Problem is, US-60 across southern Missouri, while it serves kind of the same general purpose as US-412 would, is currently very awkward to get to from the NW Arkansas metro. You either have to make an L-shaped route using I-49 and and I-44, or take the winding US-412 route to US-65 and go through Branson. Neither are really appealing. That's probably why when I lived in Springfield I never really heard of people going to NW Arkansas, or people from NW Arkansas visiting Springfield, very often, despite the metros being fairly close to one another.

In an ideal world, you could do a diagonal route between Bentonville and Springfield, but that goes through a lot of very rugged terrain, and the White and James rivers both kind of get in the way. It would also involve plowing through what few suburbs Springfield has.

Part of the problem with US-412 east of I-49 is that it's a very winding road. It's hard to build up much speed there since you're just going to have to brake again to go around another curve. If that stretch is ever going to be four-laned, it's going to have to be done from scratch on a new, straighter alignment anyway. If you're going to go to that trouble, you may as well make it a limited-access corridor, or at least take steps to make it so that it could become one in the future.

Upgrading US-412 to the future I-57 corridor makes some degree of sense, because that would make accessing US-65 to Springfield easier, and give a nice diagonal route up to Kentucky and the Midwest for NW Arkansas residents. 
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Bobby5280

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #427 on: January 29, 2022, 07:16:58 PM »

I didn't mean to suggest US-60 would be an alternative corridor for US-412. The main reason why I brought it up is that US-60 is a somewhat similar corridor in the same general region. Missouri has been working on upgrading it for a long time yet it is still nowhere near finished. US-412 is much farther behind with similar upgrades. US-60 just illustrates how daunting a challenge it would be to upgrade US-412 across Northern Arkansas.

IIRC, US-60 across Southern Missouri was also part of a High Priority Corridor and proposals to radically extend I-66.
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MikieTimT

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #428 on: January 29, 2022, 07:17:44 PM »

Quote from: MikieTimT
It's not the only good argument.  As delineated in the wording of the legislation, it wouldn't make sense to use I-50.  However, there is much evidence outside of just this legislation that there are plans, for good reason too I might add, to extend eastward from I-49.  ISTEA made all of US-412 from Tulsa to Nashville HPC #8, which means that the intent is to upgrade it to 4 lanes throughout.

Lots of those High Priority Corridors drawn up in legislation 20+ years ago are never going to happen, certainly not as full-blown Interstate routes. Lots of federal legislation ends up scuttled.

Arkansas may intend to upgrade US-412 across Northern Arkansas to 4 lanes, but the 4 lanes can be anything from an undivided 4-lane street to something divided with freeway exits. Chances are very minimal US-412 will upgraded to 100% limited access between Springdale (I-49) and Hayti (I-55). Simple undivided 4-lane upgrades will be difficult to build. I would expect people in the town of Henderson, just East of Mountain Home, would raise hell about highway construction through there.

There is a much better chance for US-60 across Southern Missouri from Springfield to Sikeston to get upgraded to full Interstate standards. But they've already been working on that corridor, building spot upgrades here and there, for decades. And it still has a long way to go before being an Interstate-class facility. US-412 across Northern Arkansas is a very long way behind US-60 in Southern Missouri in terms of corridor development.

US-60 may be easier to turn into an interstate between the endpoints you stated above, but it certainly doesn't connect anything major (Springfield is a major metro area with a pretty stagnant population over the last decade, Sikeston not so much and shrinking since the 90's) while staying on a general latitude, while US-412 does, at least across a couple of states.  US-60 takes a dive to the southwest halfway across Oklahoma (and drops south of US-412 past its concurrency with it past Enid, OK) until it intersects I-40 at Amarillo, so it doesn't make a case as a transcon any more than US-412 does, so anyone with aspirations of reserving I-50 for US-60 would have trouble finding anything more than the portion across Missouri that even somewhat retains a rough latitude.  Missouri also doesn't have a recent history of doing much at all in the way of roadbuilding that didn't involve Arkansas and will update a portion of that very segment for the I-57 project that they'll also share with Arkansas.  That being said, an x44 or x57 between Springfield and Poplar Bluff does make some sense as much of the hard work has already been done.  I don't really see the push past Springfield westward however, unless there was some sort of economic growth between it and Wichita, jumping off the US-60 and onto US-160/400 lateral.
 
As far as Henderson, AR goes, it's an tiny unincorporated retirement community with a handful of people, so the stink they raise will be proportional to how loud they are, not due to any political influence the community has.  It's not like it couldn't be bypassed to the south anyway fairly easily since Mountain Home's 4 lane divided bypass, itself easily converted to limited access and already has a grade separated exit with AR-5, runs to the south.

US-412 between the Huntsville and Harrison, and also from Harrison to Hardy at least, will have to be built on completely new alignment as funding permits between the city bypassing that has already been planned or undertaken all across northern Arkansas as is typical ARDOT fashion, but the current US-412 facility, unsuitable for the traffic counts it already has, will continue to serve everything in between.  The current work to put climb lanes on US-412 is pretty much like they did with US-71 in NWA before it was wholesale replaced with I-49.  Buying time until the real plan can get started.  Having any portion of US-412 in Arkansas as an Interstate will prod consideration to continue it on.

None of this happens within the next 15 years (other than some potential city bypasses, especially Harrison, which everyone, especially my Asian wife, would like to avoid driving through) given I-49 and I-57's priorities. Also, Little Rock's roads are always a perpetual priority in Arkansas despite its growth being slower than even Springfield's metro area, but US-412's upgrade is going to happen due to growth patterns that barely bother to pause growth during recessions whereas all of southern Missouri, other than the 10% growth in the Springfield metro and also the counties between Joplin and NWA, has stagnated or even shrunk, good times and bad.  If you look at the population changes by county for the last 10 years and likely even further back, nearly every single county in Oklahoma and Arkansas along the US-412 corridor, except for the panhandle of Oklahoma, has been growing.  That necessitates addressing the transportation bottlenecks the region has.

« Last Edit: January 29, 2022, 08:00:09 PM by MikieTimT »
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MikieTimT

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #429 on: January 29, 2022, 07:43:33 PM »

Problem is, US-60 across southern Missouri, while it serves kind of the same general purpose as US-412 would, is currently very awkward to get to from the NW Arkansas metro. You either have to make an L-shaped route using I-49 and and I-44, or take the winding US-412 route to US-65 and go through Branson. Neither are really appealing. That's probably why when I lived in Springfield I never really heard of people going to NW Arkansas, or people from NW Arkansas visiting Springfield, very often, despite the metros being fairly close to one another.

Agreed

In an ideal world, you could do a diagonal route between Bentonville and Springfield, but that goes through a lot of very rugged terrain, and the White and James rivers both kind of get in the way. It would also involve plowing through what few suburbs Springfield has.

Part of the problem with US-412 east of I-49 is that it's a very winding road. It's hard to build up much speed there since you're just going to have to brake again to go around another curve. If that stretch is ever going to be four-laned, it's going to have to be done from scratch on a new, straighter alignment anyway. If you're going to go to that trouble, you may as well make it a limited-access corridor, or at least take steps to make it so that it could become one in the future.

^^^^
This

Upgrading US-412 to the future I-57 corridor makes some degree of sense, because that would make accessing US-65 to Springfield easier, and give a nice diagonal route up to Kentucky and the Midwest for NW Arkansas residents.

US-65 is 4 lane divided with few at-grade intersections from Harrison to I-44, and it would be trivial to upgrade to a limited access facility.  FedEx Freight (LTL branch of FedEx) is headquartered in Harrison, so there's trucking benefits to upgrading the roads fanning out from it, although that by itself isn't enough an impetus.  Wal-Mart Store number 2 is there as well, so there's that too.
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Bobby5280

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #430 on: January 29, 2022, 10:51:38 PM »

Quote from: MikieTimT
US-60 may be easier to turn into an interstate between the endpoints you stated above, but it certainly doesn't connect anything major (Springfield is a major metro area with a pretty stagnant population over the last decade, Sikeston not so much and shrinking since the 90's) while staying on a general latitude, while US-412 does, at least across a couple of states.

Neither US-60 across Southern Missouri or US-412 across Northern Arkansas are particularly significant corridors. There is a difficult case to make for upgrading either corridor to full Interstate standards.

When Missouri's portion of US-60 was included as part of a much larger I-66 proposal it had much more potential. I think that was one of the motivations for MO DOT to upgrade nearly all of it to 4-lane divided and have sporadic stretches of freeway and limited access exits. Perhaps when I-57 is built up thru Poplar Bluff and over to Sikeston it might provide some extra incentive to do more limited access spot upgrades along the route. Nevertheless, without a larger multi-state big picture effort it's going to be a long time before US-60 across Southern Missouri is fully an Interstate-quality freeway, much less something that carries an Interstate number.

There is little point of upgrading US-412 East of Springdale to Interstate standards. If AR DOT is going to 4-lane it, I'll bet the end product ends up being a LOT of undivided 4-lane road. There are no major destinations along US-412 going East of Springdale. Memphis would be the next one to the East. But motorists in NWA would be better off taking I-49 down to Fort Smith and I-40 across. US-412 takes such a curvy, winding path from Springdale to Walnut Ridge there would likely be little in the way of mileage/time savings versus the existing I-49/I-40 route.

BTW, Henderson wouldn't be the only town with residents crying foul about highway construction thru their areas. There are other spots along the way with scenic/recreational use locals there wouldn't want adversely affected. Then there's the other usual matter of small towns not wanting to be fully bypassed by a highway either. Henderson is an obvious example because of the Norfolk Lake area there. Even building a non-divided 4-lane road there will likely meet a lot of resistance.
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US 89

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #431 on: January 29, 2022, 11:13:11 PM »

I don't know that it needs to be interstate standard, but if Arkansas is going to spend money on road improvements in the northeast part of the state, I think it'd be better spent on four-laning US 63. That is the main route from Kansas City and much of the western part of the US to Memphis and points southeast, and as a result in my experience there is a fair bit of truck traffic on it. Part of it is concurrent with US 412, so maybe something happens with it?

skluth

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #432 on: January 30, 2022, 12:35:12 PM »

I don't know that it needs to be interstate standard, but if Arkansas is going to spend money on road improvements in the northeast part of the state, I think it'd be better spent on four-laning US 63. That is the main route from Kansas City and much of the western part of the US to Memphis and points southeast, and as a result in my experience there is a fair bit of truck traffic on it. Part of it is concurrent with US 412, so maybe something happens with it?
Upgrading the highway between Cherokee Village and Walnut Ridge for US 412 also upgrades US 63 between the same two towns. The only other two lane segment of US 63 in Arkansas is a short but not easy to upgrade segment north from Hardy to Missouri.
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skluth

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #433 on: January 30, 2022, 01:02:07 PM »

(text deleted)
Little Rock's roads are always a perpetual priority in Arkansas despite its growth being slower than even Springfield's metro area
Just wanted to point out that Little Rock is still experiencing decent growth, especially when compared to the rest of Arkansas. It's just not the explosive growth of NWA. Little Rock grew by 4.7% during the teens. The metro grew 6.9%. Both are still better than Arkansas as a whole which only grew by 3.3%. Little Rock's metro is growing over twice the rate of the state. Little Rock isn't close to the near 25% growth of NWA, but that doesn't mean Little Rock isn't experiencing growing pains. I'd be more concerned about the 70% of Arkansas counties that lost population yet still want new highways.
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US 89

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #434 on: January 30, 2022, 01:02:58 PM »

I don't know that it needs to be interstate standard, but if Arkansas is going to spend money on road improvements in the northeast part of the state, I think it'd be better spent on four-laning US 63. That is the main route from Kansas City and much of the western part of the US to Memphis and points southeast, and as a result in my experience there is a fair bit of truck traffic on it. Part of it is concurrent with US 412, so maybe something happens with it?
Upgrading the highway between Cherokee Village and Walnut Ridge for US 412 also upgrades US 63 between the same two towns. The only other two lane segment of US 63 in Arkansas is a short but not easy to upgrade segment north from Hardy to Missouri.

Right. I guess I'm saying that instead of upgrading US 412 with a side benefit of improving US 63, they should be upgrading US 63 with a side benefit of improving US 412. Obviously Missouri would also have to do some work south of West Plains, but as far as that area goes, US 63 seems more worthy of improving than 412.

skluth

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #435 on: January 30, 2022, 04:03:57 PM »

I don't know that it needs to be interstate standard, but if Arkansas is going to spend money on road improvements in the northeast part of the state, I think it'd be better spent on four-laning US 63. That is the main route from Kansas City and much of the western part of the US to Memphis and points southeast, and as a result in my experience there is a fair bit of truck traffic on it. Part of it is concurrent with US 412, so maybe something happens with it?
Upgrading the highway between Cherokee Village and Walnut Ridge for US 412 also upgrades US 63 between the same two towns. The only other two lane segment of US 63 in Arkansas is a short but not easy to upgrade segment north from Hardy to Missouri.

Right. I guess I'm saying that instead of upgrading US 412 with a side benefit of improving US 63, they should be upgrading US 63 with a side benefit of improving US 412. Obviously Missouri would also have to do some work south of West Plains, but as far as that area goes, US 63 seems more worthy of improving than 412.
I agree US 63 should be four lanes; I also wanted it four lanes from Rolla to Cabool when I lived in St Louis. I remember US 51 becoming much busier south of the Illinois River once the I-39 Lincoln Bridge was built which made the need for finishing I-39 between Peru and Bloomington an even higher priority. From my POV, I'd prioritize upgrading US 62/63/412 from Cherokee Village to Walnut Ridge and see how that affects traffic. I wouldn't be surprised to see even more truck traffic use US 63 if the only two lane stretch was for under 20 miles.

I do wonder if Missouri's effort to upgrade US 67 to the Arkansas line will prompt Arkansas to prioritize upgrading the rest of US 67 north of Walnut Ridge (or Pocahontas if the routing stays north of the Black River) over US 412 in NE Arkansas.

Humorous observation: Someone messed up US 412 in the database for Google Maps. It's currently showing a BUS for Business Route above the shield the entire length of US 412.  :-/
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Bobby5280

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #436 on: January 30, 2022, 04:56:48 PM »

US-63 in NE Arkansas has more potential as a long distance corridor since it points directly to I-555 and I-22. I'd like to see I-22 extended farther SE from Birmingham down thru Opelika; Columbus, GA; Albany, GA; Waycross, GA and Jacksonville, FL. Nearly all the existing route from Birmingham to Jacksonville is divided 4-lane. But it would probably carry a lot more traffic as an Interstate.

US-63 drops to mostly 2-lanes NW of Walnut Ridge up to Willow Springs and the junction with US-60. If that was upgraded to 4-lane divided then there would at least be a divided highway going from Springfield, MO down to Jacksonville, FL. From Springfield highway links can be improved to Kansas City and/or Wichita.
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MikieTimT

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #437 on: January 30, 2022, 09:36:52 PM »

Humorous observation: Someone messed up US 412 in the database for Google Maps. It's currently showing a BUS for Business Route above the shield the entire length of US 412.  :-/

Submitted a request to correct this in Google Maps for the entire route.  It's only at certain zoom levels that this seems to be incorrect.
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edwaleni

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #438 on: January 31, 2022, 12:19:29 AM »

Coming from the east, we never use US-412 past Imboden. Always go up to West Plains and take US-60 to Springfield. If headed to NWA, its I-40 to I-49.

Coming from the north its I-49, but coming from Springfield, sometimes we will take US-60 through Republic and Monett for the scenic route.

I have driven both US-62 and US-412 east of NWA. US-62 is really for tourism traffic for places like Eureka Springs, all the AirBnB and condos on North Beaver Lake, Pea Ridge, etc.

But if you want to make good time, use US-412 east of Springdale. The geometry is much more modern, has overtake lanes and shoulders. Something US-62 is missing east of Pea Ridge.

Once I had to go to Berryville and Green Forest, but I took US-412 from Springdale and AR-21 through Cabanal. Much faster, much safer.

But US-412 east of Alpena where US-65 meets up south of Branson @ Harrison, on bad days its a spider web of RV's, towed fifth wheels, boat trailers, semi-trucks, all headed to Bull Shoals and Mountain Home.

I simply avoid it.
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Bobby5280

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #439 on: January 31, 2022, 10:11:36 AM »

Quote from: MikieTimT
Submitted a request to correct this in Google Maps for the entire route.  It's only at certain zoom levels that this seems to be incorrect.

The error has been present at pretty much any level in Google Earth where US-412 shields are actually visible. Zoomed out far they're replaced by other shields that overlap US-412 on the same route.
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Plutonic Panda

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #440 on: January 31, 2022, 05:57:03 PM »

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MikieTimT

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #441 on: January 31, 2022, 10:11:07 PM »

Arkansas Democrat Gazelle Article(paywall): https://www.arkansasonline.com/news/2022/jan/30/portion-of-us-412-in-arkansas-oklahoma-designated/

Methinks the route indicated through Siloam Springs is not actually going to be making the interstate designation as indicated.

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Plutonic Panda

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #442 on: January 31, 2022, 10:16:41 PM »

Why?
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MikieTimT

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #443 on: January 31, 2022, 11:18:10 PM »

Why?

It's going to require a bypass.  The lines shown are running right through the middle of Siloam Springs, which is where US-412 is currently 6-laned through with hundreds of driveways directly accessing the road, precluding any way to convert to limited access where it is currently.  As has been stated numerous times upthread, Siloam Springs will require a bypass, likely to the north if they can actually get the ROW that's most conducive topographically before it all fills up with subdivisions.  This image isn't accurate on the Arkansas side in Siloam Springs, nor with the part that's shown east of I-49.  Since its source is an Arkansas media outlet, you'd think they'd get the small part of this Interstate that's actually in Arkansas right, but alas...
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Anthony_JK

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #444 on: February 01, 2022, 12:56:05 AM »

Why?

It's going to require a bypass.  The lines shown are running right through the middle of Siloam Springs, which is where US-412 is currently 6-laned through with hundreds of driveways directly accessing the road, precluding any way to convert to limited access where it is currently.  As has been stated numerous times upthread, Siloam Springs will require a bypass, likely to the north if they can actually get the ROW that's most conducive topographically before it all fills up with subdivisions.  This image isn't accurate on the Arkansas side in Siloam Springs, nor with the part that's shown east of I-49.  Since its source is an Arkansas media outlet, you'd think they'd get the small part of this Interstate that's actually in Arkansas right, but alas...

I'm guessing that line shown is simply a general description of the corridor, and not a final alignment; and that a Siloam Springs bypass is on the table.
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edwaleni

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #445 on: February 01, 2022, 12:56:46 AM »

Why?

It's going to require a bypass.  The lines shown are running right through the middle of Siloam Springs, which is where US-412 is currently 6-laned through with hundreds of driveways directly accessing the road, precluding any way to convert to limited access where it is currently.  As has been stated numerous times upthread, Siloam Springs will require a bypass, likely to the north if they can actually get the ROW that's most conducive topographically before it all fills up with subdivisions.  This image isn't accurate on the Arkansas side in Siloam Springs, nor with the part that's shown east of I-49.  Since its source is an Arkansas media outlet, you'd think they'd get the small part of this Interstate that's actually in Arkansas right, but alas...

What if they elevate it like they do in Texas? Use frontage roads below for the local access?

As it stands now, their only saving grace for a bypass is to use a power line easement. But they will have to consume private property even with that approach.
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sprjus4

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #446 on: February 01, 2022, 12:58:02 AM »

Why?

It's going to require a bypass.  The lines shown are running right through the middle of Siloam Springs, which is where US-412 is currently 6-laned through with hundreds of driveways directly accessing the road, precluding any way to convert to limited access where it is currently.  As has been stated numerous times upthread, Siloam Springs will require a bypass, likely to the north if they can actually get the ROW that's most conducive topographically before it all fills up with subdivisions.  This image isn't accurate on the Arkansas side in Siloam Springs, nor with the part that's shown east of I-49.  Since its source is an Arkansas media outlet, you'd think they'd get the small part of this Interstate that's actually in Arkansas right, but alas...

What if they elevate it like they do in Texas? Use frontage roads below for the local access?

As it stands now, their only saving grace for a bypass is to use a power line easement. But they will have to consume private property even with that approach.
Texas would likely bypass the town.
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skluth

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #447 on: February 01, 2022, 10:43:13 AM »

Why?

It's going to require a bypass.  The lines shown are running right through the middle of Siloam Springs, which is where US-412 is currently 6-laned through with hundreds of driveways directly accessing the road, precluding any way to convert to limited access where it is currently.  As has been stated numerous times upthread, Siloam Springs will require a bypass, likely to the north if they can actually get the ROW that's most conducive topographically before it all fills up with subdivisions.  This image isn't accurate on the Arkansas side in Siloam Springs, nor with the part that's shown east of I-49.  Since its source is an Arkansas media outlet, you'd think they'd get the small part of this Interstate that's actually in Arkansas right, but alas...

I'm guessing that line shown is simply a general description of the corridor, and not a final alignment; and that a Siloam Springs bypass is on the table.
I agree. I wouldn't put an official stamp of approval on an unofficial newspaper graphic.
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yakra

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #448 on: February 02, 2022, 11:20:22 AM »

A southern 4-lane bypass of Light in western Greene County AR opened in November 2020.
Google shows the old route as 412 Business (though this doesn't necessarily mean much), with no changes to AR228.
OSM, OTOH shows old 412 as a plain county road with no known name or number, with 228 truncated to the bypass.
All of this is too new to have made it into the Greene county map or ARDOT's Road Inventory shapefiles.

Has anyone checked this out in the field?
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edwaleni

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Re: Proposed US 412 Upgrade
« Reply #449 on: February 02, 2022, 03:13:27 PM »

Here is the locale of the power line easement south of Siloam Springs. I am not saying the bypass would follow it religiously, but it does provide a clear path through several residential developments south of town.



If it is used, I would assume a gradual curve to reach it by purchasing private property.
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