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Author Topic: I-55 in Arkansas  (Read 4888 times)

CapeCodder

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I-55 in Arkansas
« on: December 14, 2021, 10:23:03 PM »

I stated in another thread that I find I-55 in Arkansas (and in extreme S. MO) creepy. What's with those awfully short death ramps? When was this stretch built? Who else has the same feeling towards I-55 in AR?
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ozarkman417

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #1 on: December 14, 2021, 10:31:16 PM »

1. The old state-named shields are, from my experience in Arkansas, by far the most abundant along I-55.

2. This interchange stands out to me in terms of its lack of safety. It is just bad design (as a result of cost cutting or issues with taking land from adjacent farmers?) with how the outer roads intersect the off-ramps, rather than just making a separate junction. Besides, in addition to it being more safe, the outer roads would be more accessable.

3. Part of what makes it so creepy (if you would call it that), is that its so... flat.
« Last Edit: December 14, 2021, 10:37:13 PM by ozarkman417 »
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Flint1979

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #2 on: December 14, 2021, 10:33:19 PM »

I know I agreed with you.
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SkyPesos

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #3 on: December 14, 2021, 10:36:39 PM »

Who's the one that decided this shitty interchange design should be used at rural exits on I-55 AR instead of a standard diamond?
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Flint1979

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #4 on: December 14, 2021, 10:47:00 PM »

Who's the one that decided this shitty interchange design should be used at rural exits on I-55 AR instead of a standard diamond?

That highway leads to one of those creepy towns. Luxora, Arkansas.
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CoolAngrybirdsrio4

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #5 on: December 14, 2021, 10:57:59 PM »

One interchange south of that is a standard diamond too
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edwaleni

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #6 on: December 14, 2021, 11:48:55 PM »

Who's the one that decided this shitty interchange design should be used at rural exits on I-55 AR instead of a standard diamond?


These exits should be in a museum. They use the original redstone that was popular when the Interstate system was being built in the 60's.

I used to think someone threw a big can of red paint into the concrete mixer until you look at it up close.

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bwana39

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #7 on: December 15, 2021, 12:19:13 AM »

I have said this before. I have questioned how I-55 actually must have been foisted upon Arkansas by the powers in Washington. It had and still has limited usefulness to Little Rock. These dinosaur relics on the road is because it has been minimally maintained and absolutely not upgraded in any manner.

I still hold that I-57 will be completed to I-20 long before I-69 gets its first mile of controlled access in Arkansas.
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sprjus4

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #8 on: December 15, 2021, 01:26:17 AM »

I have said this before. I have questioned how I-55 actually must have been foisted upon Arkansas by the powers in Washington. It had and still has limited usefulness to Little Rock. These dinosaur relics on the road is because it has been minimally maintained and absolutely not upgraded in any manner.
I-55, in combination with I-40, via West Memphis is a vital connection between Missouri and Little Rock. It does have utility for that city.

Quote
I still hold that I-57 will be completed to I-20 long before I-69 gets its first mile of controlled access in Arkansas.
I-30 definitely… I-20 is certainly questionable.
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LilianaUwU

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #9 on: December 15, 2021, 01:51:52 AM »

While we're talking about how substandard that freeway is: how is this acceptable as an offramp on the Interstate system?
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CapeCodder

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #10 on: December 15, 2021, 04:57:00 AM »

While we're talking about how substandard that freeway is: how is this acceptable as an offramp on the Interstate system?

I don't know if it's the camera, but that ramp looks far too narrow. Add in that road that branches off and it's a recipe for disaster. It's like a prehistoric version of what we have today.
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Mapmikey

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #11 on: December 15, 2021, 06:50:03 AM »

While we're talking about how substandard that freeway is: how is this acceptable as an offramp on the Interstate system?



I don't know if it's the camera, but that ramp looks far too narrow. Add in that road that branches off and it's a recipe for disaster. It's like a prehistoric version of what we have today.

It's better than the NC version of this.  The NC version makes it a lot easier to incorrectly come down the ramp the wrong way.  They still have at least one left with no concrete median (but at least the lane marking exists to turn left) - https://goo.gl/maps/hRwNUrbMHFLM4tB69
« Last Edit: December 15, 2021, 08:33:31 AM by Mapmikey »
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bwana39

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #12 on: December 15, 2021, 08:29:30 AM »

I have said this before. I have questioned how I-55 actually must have been foisted upon Arkansas by the powers in Washington. It had and still has limited usefulness to Little Rock. These dinosaur relics on the road is because it has been minimally maintained and absolutely not upgraded in any manner.
I-55, in combination with I-40, via West Memphis is a vital connection between Missouri and Little Rock. It does have utility for that city.

No not really. US-67 has ALWAYS been the route from Little Rock to Saint Louis. 67 is over 50 miles closer to Saint Louis AND half an hour closer at the speed limit. At real road speed,  the time difference is actually even greater. For a limited group of people, the all freeway routing may hold some sway. For the VAST majority it will not.

As to the completion of I-57 to I-20 my comparison was versus I-69 in Arkansas. I agree with your maybe on that one, but it is still seems more likely than I-69.
« Last Edit: December 15, 2021, 05:34:14 PM by bwana39 »
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silverback1065

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #13 on: December 15, 2021, 08:38:35 AM »

Whoever designed those interchanges was clearly drunk.  :-D
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Road Hog

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #14 on: December 15, 2021, 11:49:32 AM »

I-55 was the first interstate completed in Arkansas in the early 60s. The design is substandard for that reason. The multiple low clearances were the first tip-off.
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Bobby5280

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #15 on: December 15, 2021, 12:17:09 PM »

Quote from: bwana39
As to the completion of I-57 to I-20 my comparison was versus I-69 in Arkansas. I agree with your maybe on that one, but it is still seems more likely than I-69.

A contest between which will be completed first, I-69 thru AR & MS or a possible but not officially planned I-57 extension down to LA, sounds like a contest between two impossible scenarios. Which will happen first? Pigs sprouting wings and flying or Joan Crawford coming back from the dead with an army of zombies to terrorize Hollywood?

The I-69 projects through Southern Arkansas and NW Mississippi at least have had official plans on the books for decades now. The problem there is just a general lack of funding for all those projects. And the cost estimates for the Great River Bridge keep rising.

It would be easier financially to make an extension of I-57 Southward from Little Rock, consuming I-530 to Pine Bluff and Southward. But there are no official intentions or discussions about making any sort of Interstate extension South of current US-278 between Warren and Monticello. The current AR-530 route South of Pine Bluff has remained an unfinished Super 2 with a pair of disconnected segments for a long time. Intersections are at-grade. AR-530 is basically nothing more than a rural 2-lane highway with more gradual than usual grading. AR DOT doesn't appear to be moving quick at all to double-barrel the route and add limited access exits. They basically can't seem to get that 30 some odd miles of Interstate route finished. Adding another 80 miles of road South of that to Monroe seems far more improbable.
« Last Edit: December 15, 2021, 12:20:00 PM by Bobby5280 »
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silverback1065

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #16 on: December 15, 2021, 01:40:59 PM »

Quote from: bwana39
As to the completion of I-57 to I-20 my comparison was versus I-69 in Arkansas. I agree with your maybe on that one, but it is still seems more likely than I-69.

A contest between which will be completed first, I-69 thru AR & MS or a possible but not officially planned I-57 extension down to LA, sounds like a contest between two impossible scenarios. Which will happen first? Pigs sprouting wings and flying or Joan Crawford coming back from the dead with an army of zombies to terrorize Hollywood?

The I-69 projects through Southern Arkansas and NW Mississippi at least have had official plans on the books for decades now. The problem there is just a general lack of funding for all those projects. And the cost estimates for the Great River Bridge keep rising.

It would be easier financially to make an extension of I-57 Southward from Little Rock, consuming I-530 to Pine Bluff and Southward. But there are no official intentions or discussions about making any sort of Interstate extension South of current US-278 between Warren and Monticello. The current AR-530 route South of Pine Bluff has remained an unfinished Super 2 with a pair of disconnected segments for a long time. Intersections are at-grade. AR-530 is basically nothing more than a rural 2-lane highway with more gradual than usual grading. AR DOT doesn't appear to be moving quick at all to double-barrel the route and add limited access exits. They basically can't seem to get that 30 some odd miles of Interstate route finished. Adding another 80 miles of road South of that to Monroe seems far more improbable.

69 will never be finished in MS, AK, or LA. and what purpose would 57 serve in LA?
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capt.ron

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #17 on: December 15, 2021, 01:59:21 PM »

Whoever designed those interchanges was clearly drunk.  :-D
Most of the interchanges on Arkansas' freeways have a LOT to be desired, like the excessive curvature on a lot of the on-ramps for example. Most work against you when you're trying to accelerate up to freeway speeds and have to deal with a sharp curve on the on ramp (!!!). But yes, the engineers that somehow got their "design" of on ramps to be approved defies description (and logic).
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bwana39

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #18 on: December 15, 2021, 05:33:04 PM »

Quote from: bwana39
As to the completion of I-57 to I-20 my comparison was versus I-69 in Arkansas. I agree with your maybe on that one, but it is still seems more likely than I-69.

A contest between which will be completed first, I-69 thru AR & MS or a possible but not officially planned I-57 extension down to LA, sounds like a contest between two impossible scenarios. Which will happen first? Pigs sprouting wings and flying or Joan Crawford coming back from the dead with an army of zombies to terrorize Hollywood?

The I-69 projects through Southern Arkansas and NW Mississippi at least have had official plans on the books for decades now. The problem there is just a general lack of funding for all those projects. And the cost estimates for the Great River Bridge keep rising.

It would be easier financially to make an extension of I-57 Southward from Little Rock, consuming I-530 to Pine Bluff and Southward. But there are no official intentions or discussions about making any sort of Interstate extension South of current US-278 between Warren and Monticello. The current AR-530 route South of Pine Bluff has remained an unfinished Super 2 with a pair of disconnected segments for a long time. Intersections are at-grade. AR-530 is basically nothing more than a rural 2-lane highway with more gradual than usual grading. AR DOT doesn't appear to be moving quick at all to double-barrel the route and add limited access exits. They basically can't seem to get that 30 some odd miles of Interstate route finished. Adding another 80 miles of road South of that to Monroe seems far more improbable.

69 will never be finished in MS, AK AR, or LA.


I agree fully!

and what purpose would 57 serve in LA?

What purpose would I-57 serve in LA?  I-57 could complete two separate corridors.  One would wind up in  Baton Rouge (US-425 to Natchez and US-61 to Baton Rouge and I-10.) The other to Alexandria and Possibly Lake Charles.

First US-425 to Natchez. Secondly US-165 to Alexandria. Hurricane evacuation routes.  If you were in LOUISIANA, you would be hearing this. Right now, the discussion is all on I-49 to NOLA, I-10 widening & rebuild, Solving the traffic dilemmas in Baton Rouge, a new bridge in Both Baton Rouge and Lake Charles. (Additional in Baton Rouge. Replacement in LC.) Some possible projects in Shreveport and Bossier City PROPER.

Beyond that the discussion ends, When this list is completed, the next project would be a new North / South Project.  I-57 would fit that mold. I 69 doesn't. It would skirt into the state above the hurricane line and the Northeasterly direction is all wrong...

I stand by my idea that I-57 gets to I-20 before any of I-69 is built to interstate standards in Arkansas and before any of I-69 is built north of I-20 in Louisiana and likely west of I-49 as well. 

If it were Texas, it would likely wind up as 4-lane divided highway. Louisiana and Arkansas will build freeway.



« Last Edit: December 15, 2021, 06:07:49 PM by bwana39 »
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Tomahawkin

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #19 on: December 15, 2021, 06:10:04 PM »

Has anyone noticed the bumps on IH55 In the right lanes on both sides after the US 64 interchange that continue past the IH 555 Interchange? Those bumps seem to be every 150-200 feet where the pavement/concrete slabs connect. Those bumps have been there for years. I will be out there next week, so I will take continued notice...
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CapeCodder

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #20 on: December 15, 2021, 06:54:15 PM »

Whoever designed those interchanges was clearly drunk.  :-D
Most of the interchanges on Arkansas' freeways have a LOT to be desired, like the excessive curvature on a lot of the on-ramps for example. Most work against you when you're trying to accelerate up to freeway speeds and have to deal with a sharp curve on the on ramp (!!!). But yes, the engineers that somehow got their "design" of on ramps to be approved defies description (and logic).

Could be a "favor" to get in the good graces of local government?
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Rick Powell

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #21 on: December 16, 2021, 10:27:31 AM »

Whoever designed those interchanges was clearly drunk.  :-D
Most of the interchanges on Arkansas' freeways have a LOT to be desired, like the excessive curvature on a lot of the on-ramps for example. Most work against you when you're trying to accelerate up to freeway speeds and have to deal with a sharp curve on the on ramp (!!!). But yes, the engineers that somehow got their "design" of on ramps to be approved defies description (and logic).

Could be a "favor" to get in the good graces of local government?

The feds allowed a lot more leeway in the late 50s and early 60s on design than they would now. Freeway design, including safety standards using real world data on what worked and what didn't, was not as advanced as it is now. Left hand ramps, median turnarounds, woefully short or hairpin curved entrance and exit ramps were once allowed to happen and would rarely make it past the design exception process today.
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bwana39

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #22 on: December 16, 2021, 11:40:07 AM »

Whoever designed those interchanges was clearly drunk.  :-D
Most of the interchanges on Arkansas' freeways have a LOT to be desired, like the excessive curvature on a lot of the on-ramps for example. Most work against you when you're trying to accelerate up to freeway speeds and have to deal with a sharp curve on the on ramp (!!!). But yes, the engineers that somehow got their "design" of on ramps to be approved defies description (and logic).

Could be a "favor" to get in the good graces of local government?

The feds allowed a lot more leeway in the late 50s and early 60s on design than they would now. Freeway design, including safety standards using real world data on what worked and what didn't, was not as advanced as it is now. Left hand ramps, median turnarounds, woefully short or hairpin curved entrance and exit ramps were once allowed to happen and would rarely make it past the design exception process today.

As a nutshell, I -55 was built to minimal 1950's standards. It has had minimal to no upgrades and improvement. As far as that goes, even the maintenance has been minimalist.  Arkansas views it as something they want minimally and are stuck taking care of. For Arkansas, It has virtually no utility outside the path it runs along. While the rural counties it runs through (and even Jacksonville)  stand to benefit from it. The power base in Little Rock  (and  even NWA) have virtually no investment It is like taking care of an aged aunt or a distant cousin's  orphan child. You do it, but perhaps minimally and more out of obligation or requirement than actually wanting to help.
« Last Edit: December 16, 2021, 12:28:54 PM by bwana39 »
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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #23 on: December 16, 2021, 12:51:19 PM »

As a nutshell, I -55 was built to minimal 1950's standards. It has had minimal to no upgrades and improvement. As far as that goes, even the maintenance has been minimalist.  Arkansas views it as something they want minimally and are stuck taking care of. For Arkansas, It has virtually no utility outside the path it runs along. While the rural counties it runs through (and even Jacksonville)  stand to benefit from it. The power base in Little Rock  (and  even NWA) have virtually no investment It is like taking care of an aged aunt or a distant cousin's  orphan child. You do it, but perhaps minimally and more out of obligation or requirement than actually wanting to help.
Wouldn't it be part of the route between Little Rock and places like Chicago (I-40/I-55/I-57)?  That might change once I-57 gets extended, but as of right now, it's only 6 minutes longer per Google than taking the future I-57 corridor, and it avoids the at-grades and stays on the interstate system.
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edwaleni

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Re: I-55 in Arkansas
« Reply #24 on: December 16, 2021, 01:30:10 PM »

Whoever designed those interchanges was clearly drunk.  :-D
Most of the interchanges on Arkansas' freeways have a LOT to be desired, like the excessive curvature on a lot of the on-ramps for example. Most work against you when you're trying to accelerate up to freeway speeds and have to deal with a sharp curve on the on ramp (!!!). But yes, the engineers that somehow got their "design" of on ramps to be approved defies description (and logic).

Could be a "favor" to get in the good graces of local government?

The feds allowed a lot more leeway in the late 50s and early 60s on design than they would now. Freeway design, including safety standards using real world data on what worked and what didn't, was not as advanced as it is now. Left hand ramps, median turnarounds, woefully short or hairpin curved entrance and exit ramps were once allowed to happen and would rarely make it past the design exception process today.

As a nutshell, I -55 was built to minimal 1950's standards. It has had minimal to no upgrades and improvement. As far as that goes, even the maintenance has been minimalist.  Arkansas views it as something they want minimally and are stuck taking care of. For Arkansas, It has virtually no utility outside the path it runs along. While the rural counties it runs through (and even Jacksonville)  stand to benefit from it. The power base in Little Rock  (and  even NWA) have virtually no investment It is like taking care of an aged aunt or a distant cousin's  orphan child. You do it, but perhaps minimally and more out of obligation or requirement than actually wanting to help.

When you have a road to connect two metro areas (St Louis - Memphis) that aren't in your state, I guess that would be the posture.

I recall the same with I-55 from Memphis to New Orleans. Other than Jackson, the exits were pretty sparse and services very rare. I could have been driving across a desert.
« Last Edit: December 16, 2021, 10:08:59 PM by edwaleni »
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