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Author Topic: I-49 in Arkansas  (Read 1058893 times)

MikieTimT

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3175 on: September 21, 2021, 02:54:22 PM »

Though I don't remember the details offhand, I seem to recall AHTD/ArDOT's lighting policy is suitably insane that it's been the subject of repeated rounds of criticism here in the pastóI think someone even confronted the AHTD rep here over it when they were around.

The policy is, is that lighting is up to the municipality.  Don't agree with it, but given the inability to get a rather important bridge built to fill a glaring gap in the next phase of I-49 in the state, the funds just aren't there for the state to light the Interstates.  It's a 'pay as you go' state other than some specific bond issues retired by 1/2 cent tax money (CAP), so lighting isn't high on the priority list clearly.
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O Tamandua

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3176 on: September 21, 2021, 04:25:03 PM »

Back to I-49 and the BVB for a moment: if Arkansas had been able to build their side of the Bypass when Missouri was ready to in '05, the Harrisonville(?)-Pineville stretch of 71 still wouldn't have been Interstate for awhile and the new Bypass would have been still viewed as part of the I-49 pipe dream of yesteryear.  (The Texarkana-Shreveport section of I-49 wasn't built then, either, as I recall, nor was the little I-49 "Island" between Barling and Greenwood, let alone all the six-laned sections in NWA.)  In 10 days all the focus will be on that bridge plus the big Greenwood-Texarkana section.  Not saying I'm glad the BVP took so long to complete (and I know Arkansas politics, or rather, payment methods haven't changed), but again, NOT finishing I-49 as soon as possible will look a lot more foolish on October 1, 2021 than it would have on October 1, 2007, or thereabouts.  Amazing to see all the progress that HAS been made in this 16 year time frame.
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Road Hog

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3177 on: September 21, 2021, 10:35:57 PM »

Regarding all the fictional projects in the SE half of the state bisected by US 67, good luck. The NW half is where the economic action is and traffic counts indicate this. Just fill potholes in Warren and El Dorado and they will be fine.
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jbnv

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3178 on: September 22, 2021, 01:24:32 PM »

Regarding all the fictional projects in the SE half of the state bisected by US 67, good luck. The NW half is where the economic action is and traffic counts indicate this. Just fill potholes in Warren and El Dorado and they will be fine.

Well, yeah. Everything in the SE half pretty much depends on Louisiana working with them to have any chance of coming to fruition and not being roads to nowhere. By the same token, the action in Louisiana is along I-10 and the Future I-49 South corridor. I'm not even sure that Louisiana really cares about I-49 north of Shreveport any more.
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Ryctor2018

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3179 on: September 22, 2021, 02:38:18 PM »

Regarding all the fictional projects in the SE half of the state bisected by US 67, good luck. The NW half is where the economic action is and traffic counts indicate this. Just fill potholes in Warren and El Dorado and they will be fine.

Well, yeah. Everything in the SE half pretty much depends on Louisiana working with them to have any chance of coming to fruition and not being roads to nowhere. By the same token, the action in Louisiana is along I-10 and the Future I-49 South corridor. I'm not even sure that Louisiana really cares about I-49 north of Shreveport any more.

I thought I-49 in Northern Louisiana was completed? (Outside of Shreveport's ICC that is).
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MikieTimT

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3180 on: September 22, 2021, 03:20:46 PM »

Regarding all the fictional projects in the SE half of the state bisected by US 67, good luck. The NW half is where the economic action is and traffic counts indicate this. Just fill potholes in Warren and El Dorado and they will be fine.

Well, yeah. Everything in the SE half pretty much depends on Louisiana working with them to have any chance of coming to fruition and not being roads to nowhere. By the same token, the action in Louisiana is along I-10 and the Future I-49 South corridor. I'm not even sure that Louisiana really cares about I-49 north of Shreveport any more.

I thought I-49 in Northern Louisiana was completed? (Outside of Shreveport's ICC that is).

It is completed, other than in Shreveport itself.  I think jbnv is referring to the laughable maintenance since completed.  It's basically closed after ice or snow precipitation of any significance.
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jbnv

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3181 on: September 22, 2021, 03:32:28 PM »

It is completed, other than in Shreveport itself.  I think jbnv is referring to the laughable maintenance since completed.  It's basically closed after ice or snow precipitation of any significance.

I was referring to the parts that aren't finished outside of Louisiana, namely Texarkana to Fort Smith. I wasn't aware of the laughable maintenance.
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MikieTimT

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3182 on: September 22, 2021, 03:41:28 PM »

It is completed, other than in Shreveport itself.  I think jbnv is referring to the laughable maintenance since completed.  It's basically closed after ice or snow precipitation of any significance.

I was referring to the parts that aren't finished outside of Louisiana, namely Texarkana to Fort Smith. I wasn't aware of the laughable maintenance.

I was thinking you might have been referring to another forum topic with your statement:    
I-49 in Northern Louisiana (Louisiana closes I-49 way too soon in cold weather.)


Now I understand you were not referring to Louisiana at all.  You're probably right in that using political capital to help Arkansas at this stage of I-49 development isn't high on their priority list, what with the large amount of I-49 still to be done in Louisiana itself within Shreveport, Lafayette, and the US-90 corridor.
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jbnv

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3183 on: September 22, 2021, 04:23:59 PM »

Now I understand you were not referring to Louisiana at all.  You're probably right in that using political capital to help Arkansas at this stage of I-49 development isn't high on their priority list, what with the large amount of I-49 still to be done in Louisiana itself within Shreveport, Lafayette, and the US-90 corridor.

Exactly.
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ChimpOnTheWheel

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3184 on: September 22, 2021, 06:20:53 PM »

https://www.4029tv.com/article/bella-vista-bypass-work-wrapping-up/37669448#

Work is wrapping up on the BVB (soon-to-be I-49). Interestingly, at 0'31" you can see a SPEED LIMIT 75 sign at the Arkansas line, heading southbound on I-49 from Missouri.
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sprjus4

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3185 on: September 22, 2021, 06:40:08 PM »

^ I had questioned the speed limit being either 70 mph or 75 mph, depending on what Arkansas would decide to do, and this same image had been posted, but with a 70 mph speed limit.

Looks like Arkansas decided to bump this stretch to 75 mph, likely the entire section north of US-71. Itís generous, but as I also mentioned before, it will only be about 13 miles of 75 mph zone with 70 mph on either side for significant distances. Iím not opposed to them going for the increase, but wouldnít have complained if they just stuck 70 mph uniform, at least while Missouri stays capped at 70 mph.

Itíll probably be posted at 70 mph in Missouri. As for Arkansas, 70 or 75 mph, depends what they go for north of Bentonville.

70mph in Arkansas.
https://www.4029tv.com/article/missouri-portion-of-bella-vista-bypass-on-schedule/35906021

@ 1:05, you can clearly see an already posted 70mph sign.
That makes sense, the area could probably be 75 mph, but considering it's not much of a distance between the urban segment in Bentonville and Missouri, where the speed limit is capped at 70 mph, they probably did not want a variability in speed limit (70 mph -> 75 mph -> 70 mph) and decided to keep it uniform throughout. If Missouri ever goes to 75 mph, I could see Arkansas I-49 north of US-71 being increased to 75 mph as well.
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O Tamandua

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3186 on: September 22, 2021, 11:18:28 PM »

1. 
Quote
(From the 40/29 story 2 posts above) AR-DOT officials said they have plans for a new state-of-the-art welcome center that will be built at the first exit for Highway 72 on the bypass.

CONFIRMATION, finally (though no surprise).

2.
Quote
Now I understand you were not referring to Louisiana at all.  You're probably right in that using political capital to help Arkansas at this stage of I-49 development isn't high on their priority list, what with the large amount of I-49 still to be done in Louisiana itself within Shreveport, Lafayette, and the US-90 corridor.

The bigger question I would wonder is whether Texas would be willing to use political capital (whether joined or not by Louisiana) on this unfinished segment, especially given it will bump up to their state line.  A finished Arkansas I-49 might mean more to the Greater Houston Area and the Brownsville region than it even would to Baton Rouge/New Orleans.
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jbnv

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3187 on: September 23, 2021, 10:07:17 AM »

The bigger question I would wonder is whether Texas would be willing to use political capital (whether joined or not by Louisiana) on this unfinished segment, especially given it will bump up to their state line.  A finished Arkansas I-49 might mean more to the Greater Houston Area and the Brownsville region than it even would to Baton Rouge/New Orleans.

It doesn't just bump up on their line; it currently ends right on it and part of that stretch will pass through Texas. So yes, Arkansas needs Texas to care about the stretch at all for it to get done. And maybe there's private conversation between the two states that's moving this forward behind the scenes.

What benefit does Louisiana get from I-49 complete in Arkansas anyway? The only one I can think of is better access to NWA for evacuations.
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edwaleni

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3188 on: September 23, 2021, 10:34:16 AM »

The bigger question I would wonder is whether Texas would be willing to use political capital (whether joined or not by Louisiana) on this unfinished segment, especially given it will bump up to their state line.  A finished Arkansas I-49 might mean more to the Greater Houston Area and the Brownsville region than it even would to Baton Rouge/New Orleans.

It doesn't just bump up on their line; it currently ends right on it and part of that stretch will pass through Texas. So yes, Arkansas needs Texas to care about the stretch at all for it to get done. And maybe there's private conversation between the two states that's moving this forward behind the scenes.

What benefit does Louisiana get from I-49 complete in Arkansas anyway? The only one I can think of is better access to NWA for evacuations.

Port of New Orleans will benefit from certain commerce moving to/from Kansas City in a more effective manner.

A lot of ag products going to Europe exit through the Port of NOLA. Railroads have all but abandoned the 800 mile or less market. That leaves lots of room for markets between KCMO and NOLA to get product to port without railroad overhead.

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MikieTimT

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3189 on: September 23, 2021, 12:50:23 PM »

The bigger question I would wonder is whether Texas would be willing to use political capital (whether joined or not by Louisiana) on this unfinished segment, especially given it will bump up to their state line.  A finished Arkansas I-49 might mean more to the Greater Houston Area and the Brownsville region than it even would to Baton Rouge/New Orleans.

It doesn't just bump up on their line; it currently ends right on it and part of that stretch will pass through Texas. So yes, Arkansas needs Texas to care about the stretch at all for it to get done. And maybe there's private conversation between the two states that's moving this forward behind the scenes.

What benefit does Louisiana get from I-49 complete in Arkansas anyway? The only one I can think of is better access to NWA for evacuations.

If Texas doesn't connect to the short segment in their state with some sort of NW bypass of Texarkana, I question their will to want any of I-49 in their state as they'd be on the hook for half of the Red River crossing.  I certainly see Arkansas' desire for splitting the cost.  I swear this state has more river border crossings...

I doubt that many evacuees would go all the way to NWA in the event of a hurricane as they are always tropical storm level or less by the time they work their way to the LA/AR border.  They'd be just as likely to go to Texarkana or Little Rock as continuing up a completed I-49.  In most storms, they likely wouldn't need to go further than Shreveport, unless flooding was a major concern as it sometimes still can be with remnants.
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jbnv

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3190 on: September 23, 2021, 01:40:50 PM »

I doubt that many evacuees would go all the way to NWA in the event of a hurricane as they are always tropical storm level or less by the time they work their way to the LA/AR border.  They'd be just as likely to go to Texarkana or Little Rock as continuing up a completed I-49.  In most storms, they likely wouldn't need to go further than Shreveport, unless flooding was a major concern as it sometimes still can be with remnants.

I have a relative that lives "down the bayou" that got slammed by Ida. I heard she had gone all the way to Fredricksburg, Texas. I've heard of people evacuating to places like Atlanta and St. Louis. The simple fact is that hotels along the interstates fill up quickly in these situations and the states need places to send people. Also, NWA has the University of Arkansas. I figure that if it's not a home-game weekend, NWA should have plenty of hotel rooms that can accommodate evacuees.

For the record, you're supporting my argument that Louisiana gets little benefit from the completion of I-49 from Texarkana to Ft. Smith.
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ChiMilNet

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3191 on: September 23, 2021, 03:16:22 PM »

I doubt that many evacuees would go all the way to NWA in the event of a hurricane as they are always tropical storm level or less by the time they work their way to the LA/AR border.  They'd be just as likely to go to Texarkana or Little Rock as continuing up a completed I-49.  In most storms, they likely wouldn't need to go further than Shreveport, unless flooding was a major concern as it sometimes still can be with remnants.

I have a relative that lives "down the bayou" that got slammed by Ida. I heard she had gone all the way to Fredricksburg, Texas. I've heard of people evacuating to places like Atlanta and St. Louis. The simple fact is that hotels along the interstates fill up quickly in these situations and the states need places to send people. Also, NWA has the University of Arkansas. I figure that if it's not a home-game weekend, NWA should have plenty of hotel rooms that can accommodate evacuees.

For the record, you're supporting my argument that Louisiana gets little benefit from the completion of I-49 from Texarkana to Ft. Smith.

Thinking big picture here. TX should have a lot of incentive to do that little part of I-49 along with AR finishing the central portion. When you combine that with the I-369/69 corridor from Texarkana to Houston, which TX does seem committed to, you suddenly have a very viable and relatively direct route to get from NW AR, KC, and other cities in the Central US further North down to Houston while relieving the pressure on the DFW freeways, plus also bypassing the OK turnpikes. Fact is, Houston is one of the faster growing and a top ten metropolitan area in the US, which also can get slammed by hurricanes. There needs to be as many routes out of the coastal areas for evacuations, as well as commerce. Right now, the only Interstate North out of Houston that is a complete route is the already overcrowded I-45. I-69/369/49 creates a much-needed access from Houston to the Central US. TX should know this, and realize it has a lot of stakes in its portion of I-49, though short it may be.
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MikieTimT

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3192 on: September 23, 2021, 03:59:50 PM »

I doubt that many evacuees would go all the way to NWA in the event of a hurricane as they are always tropical storm level or less by the time they work their way to the LA/AR border.  They'd be just as likely to go to Texarkana or Little Rock as continuing up a completed I-49.  In most storms, they likely wouldn't need to go further than Shreveport, unless flooding was a major concern as it sometimes still can be with remnants.

I have a relative that lives "down the bayou" that got slammed by Ida. I heard she had gone all the way to Fredricksburg, Texas. I've heard of people evacuating to places like Atlanta and St. Louis. The simple fact is that hotels along the interstates fill up quickly in these situations and the states need places to send people. Also, NWA has the University of Arkansas. I figure that if it's not a home-game weekend, NWA should have plenty of hotel rooms that can accommodate evacuees.

For the record, you're supporting my argument that Louisiana gets little benefit from the completion of I-49 from Texarkana to Ft. Smith.

I'm sure some folks do go that far in an evacuation, but I'd bet that most go that far due to family contacts as opposed to finding the first open room.  NWA is more than 500 miles from Lafayette, and even if there was a completed I-49, there'd be little in the way of services between Texarkana and Ft. Smith for quite a few years.  Sure, there will be truck stops and hotels go up pretty quick along the Waldron and Mena bypasses, but I'd be shocked if they amounted to many rooms until some infill occurs over the course of decades as there aren't much in the way of jobs at either to otherwise draw migrants.

I'm sure that those in Louisiana for the most part don't see as much benefit to Arkansas' remaining mileage, just as I personally won't see as much benefit to it either once the segment across the Arkansas River between I-40 and AR-22 are completed as I don't have much call to go south of Ft. Smith anymore as my family down there have all moved on.  And that goes doubly so for any of Louisiana's remaining gaps.  But there's plenty of others that I'm sure have different needs, so it's not like they don't have value.  The higher value portions (AADT) will inevitably be built first.  It's ISTEA HPC route #1, so it'll all get done eventually.
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bassoon1986

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3193 on: September 23, 2021, 05:33:22 PM »

The bigger question I would wonder is whether Texas would be willing to use political capital (whether joined or not by Louisiana) on this unfinished segment, especially given it will bump up to their state line.  A finished Arkansas I-49 might mean more to the Greater Houston Area and the Brownsville region than it even would to Baton Rouge/New Orleans.

It doesn't just bump up on their line; it currently ends right on it and part of that stretch will pass through Texas. So yes, Arkansas needs Texas to care about the stretch at all for it to get done. And maybe there's private conversation between the two states that's moving this forward behind the scenes.

What benefit does Louisiana get from I-49 complete in Arkansas anyway? The only one I can think of is better access to NWA for evacuations.

If Texas doesn't connect to the short segment in their state with some sort of NW bypass of Texarkana, I question their will to want any of I-49 in their state as they'd be on the hook for half of the Red River crossing.  I certainly see Arkansas' desire for splitting the cost.  I swear this state has more river border crossings...

I doubt that many evacuees would go all the way to NWA in the event of a hurricane as they are always tropical storm level or less by the time they work their way to the LA/AR border.  They'd be just as likely to go to Texarkana or Little Rock as continuing up a completed I-49.  In most storms, they likely wouldn't need to go further than Shreveport, unless flooding was a major concern as it sometimes still can be with remnants.
You would be surprised. I knew people from Houma, LA after Hurricane Ida that had to travel as far as Hot Springs. Thatís still a ways from NWA but further than I would have thought you could find accommodations.


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O Tamandua

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3194 on: September 23, 2021, 11:51:53 PM »

The bigger question I would wonder is whether Texas would be willing to use political capital (whether joined or not by Louisiana) on this unfinished segment, especially given it will bump up to their state line.  A finished Arkansas I-49 might mean more to the Greater Houston Area and the Brownsville region than it even would to Baton Rouge/New Orleans.

It doesn't just bump up on their line; it currently ends right on it and part of that stretch will pass through Texas. So yes, Arkansas needs Texas to care about the stretch at all for it to get done. And maybe there's private conversation between the two states that's moving this forward behind the scenes.

What benefit does Louisiana get from I-49 complete in Arkansas anyway? The only one I can think of is better access to NWA for evacuations.

Texarkana is making preparations to grow significantly when, as expected, I-369 and I-69 Texas are complete.  Bet there's a lot of private conversation on this subject going on, as you speculate.
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MikieTimT

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3195 on: September 24, 2021, 10:16:23 AM »

The iDriveArkansas camera viewing the south end sure looks different now with that hill mostly gone.  Still looks like a lot of work to be done before the end of next week, though.  Maybe the US-71 exit will still be closed southbound after Oct. 1.
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jbnv

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3196 on: September 24, 2021, 11:16:15 AM »

What benefit does Louisiana get from I-49 complete in Arkansas anyway? The only one I can think of is better access to NWA for evacuations.

Just thought of a real benefit to Louisiana: a faster trip for LSU and Arkansas fans for the Battle of the Boot.

(This is sarcasm.)
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Anthony_JK

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3197 on: September 24, 2021, 08:16:27 PM »

They could just as easily move that game to Shreveport (Independence Bowl Stadium) and/or Little Rock.


Well, I-49 would, especially when I-49 South is completed, give better access to the main Louisiana ports (Port of South Louisiana, Port Fourchon, NOLA), which would not suck for commerce.
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O Tamandua

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3198 on: September 26, 2021, 11:37:44 AM »

BVB WEEK BEGINS!

(EDIT: It appears to be the lead story in today's Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette - it's at the top of their web site right now, regardless.  The I-49 pincer is about to shut to between Alma and north Texarkana.):

Missing link in I-49 ready to open, ribbon cutting set

https://www.nwaonline.com/news/2021/sep/26/missing-link-in-i-49-ready-to-open-ribbon-cutting/
« Last Edit: September 26, 2021, 01:05:22 PM by O Tamandua »
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MikieTimT

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Re: I-49 in Arkansas
« Reply #3199 on: September 27, 2021, 09:18:37 AM »

BVB WEEK BEGINS!

(EDIT: It appears to be the lead story in today's Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette - it's at the top of their web site right now, regardless.  The I-49 pincer is about to shut to between Alma and north Texarkana.):

Missing link in I-49 ready to open, ribbon cutting set

https://www.nwaonline.com/news/2021/sep/26/missing-link-in-i-49-ready-to-open-ribbon-cutting/

Sure looks like they've got quite a bit left to finish on the overpass and the southbound US-71 exit in Bentonville looking at the live feed from the iDriveArkansas.com camera.  Still got lots of rock on the offramp, which will likely need a resurface at minimum after they clear all of the tailings from the blasting.  Still need to finish striping the southbound carriageway across the overpass, and they haven't done any striping of the northbound carriageway for a little ways past the ends of the overpass.  That likely can be done in a day, though.  Is the SPUI underneath scheduled to be done by Oct. 1, or is that considered its own project?  I'd probably expect some cleanup projects and lane closures after Oct. 1 for a month or so regardless.
« Last Edit: September 27, 2021, 09:20:39 AM by MikieTimT »
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