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Started by Alex, February 11, 2009, 10:22:27 PM

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I'll post Delaware road related articles here. Comments welcomed.

Tests begin for new Indian River bridge
Builder seeks to avoid errors of first design

By MOLLY MURRAY - The News Journal - February 11, 2009

Preliminary work on the $150 million Indian River bridge is starting with the basics -- a series of test pilings and load reviews to make sure the new bridge has a solid base.

And on Tuesday, Jay Erwin, project engineer with design-build contractor Skanska USA Civil Southeast Inc., said the first load test on the sample piling worked as expected.

State officials want to avoid any problems with this new bridge design.

In the fall of 2007, they were forced to abandon an earlier design because of compaction problems with two mounds of dirt that were built in preparation for construction of the bridge approaches. State engineers discovered that the massive dirt piles were shifting to the west by as much as a foot as they settled. They concluded it would take seven years for the mounds to compact enough for bridge construction to begin.

At the time, the setback was estimated to cost the state $20 million to $30 million. Much of the dirt had to be removed and trucked off site.

Erwin said the test piles are the first step in his company's construction schedule. Once they are installed and tested, permanent precast pilings -- 284 of them in all -- we be pounded into the ground to form the foundation for the bridge approaches.

Skanska designers plan a multi-step approach to building the bridge, working on each side of the bridge at the same time, he said.

Once the pilings are driven, the bridge supports -- including the pylons, piers and foundations -- will be laid. This work is expected to start this summer.

Erwin said having two separate crews work on each side of the bridge trims construction time.

"We think it leads to very healthy competition," he said.

Many of the structural components of the bridge are being built from pre-cast concrete that will come from Cape Charles, Va.-based Bayshore Concrete Products. The company is a subsidiary of Skanska.

Although many of the components will be precast, they are custom made to fit the Indian River Inlet Bridge, said Doug Robb, the project manager for the state Department of Transportation.

The bridge is expected to be completed in spring or summer of 2011. In addition to bridge construction, other work will also be done, including construction of roadways that will lead to the new bridge and reconstruction of Delaware Seashore State Park facilities that were closed to provide a staging area for bridge construction.

Once the new bridge is complete, state officials plan to demolish the old bridge.

Meanwhile, Robb said, state officials continue to do extensive testing and monitoring on the current bridge to make sure it is structurally sound.

"We believe this is one of the most monitored bridges in the country," he said. "The good news is we're seeing stabilization of erosion."

The old bridge has pilings that extend into Indian River Inlet. Rapid movement of water through the inlet has washed away sediment from the pilings and created a series of deep holes. State officials brought in stone to stabilize the pilings and to limit erosion. But they continue to run extensive tests, including special sensors that detect whether the bridge is tilting.

The new bridge won't have pilings that extend into Indian River Inlet. It will be 2,600 feet long, including a 900-foot clear span over the inlet, with 1,700 feet of bridge over land. The bridge will be supported by cable stays in a design similar to the William V. Roth Bridge over the Chesapeake & Delaware Canal.


Quote from: froggie on February 12, 2009, 10:30:04 PM
Speaking of Delaware...I noticed this evening that DelDOT is using "bubble shields" on I-495...

Interstate 495 went from vastly no reassurance shields, many of which had white cardinal direction banners, to an overhaul with consistent bubble shields in 2000. The signing of those shields were done in conjunction with the project to shut down Interstate 95 for repaving (when they closed a direction three months at a time). DelDOT wanted to emphasize Interstate 495 as the through route. This is also why the signs on the southbound I-95/495 split in Pennsylvania still display "Thru Traffic" and "Local Traffic" (PennDOT has not gotten the message!).


Toll Road News article: Stimulus $s to bring open road tolling to Delaware's I-95 toll plaza

This article talks about the reconstruction of the Delaware Turnpike toll plaza to accommodate open road tolling (2x2) lanes down the middle. They've talked about reconfiguring this plaza for years, and the article indicates that work could begin in 2011 or 2012, so its still a couple more years away...

When I was last in Delaware, there were daily back-ups southbound on several days all the way to the Delaware Service Plaza (even toward late evening). To me, this is unacceptable, but I suppose the traveling public there has come to accept it as normal. Because of this, I did not use Interstate 95 once between Exit 109 in Maryland and Exit 3 in Delaware.


Quote from: aaroads on February 16, 2009, 02:16:04 PMI did not use Interstate 95 once between Exit 109 in Maryland and Exit 3 in Delaware.
I can't remember the last time I actually drove THROUGH the toll booths in Delaware, especially with a free alternate available with little or no time penalty.


No one that I know of actually goes through the toll plaza, unless they did it to clinch that stretch of highway. I've done it about 4 times since 1990.

I've thought about posting a map for those who want to avoid the toll road.  :) There are a couple of routes to take, the main is using the state routes, but I have a couple of others I frequent when back in Newark when visiting family in Elkton.

Unfortunately my favorite, which utilizes Otts Otts Chapel Road and Welsh Tract Road (which takes you over Interstate 95 twice), is changing for the worse as the woods on Welsh Tract Road near its eastbound beginning have succumbed to brand new sprawl.  :-(


Well, from first hand experience, I would much rather take that extra few minutes to bypass around. First, I would at least be moving at a faster rate of speed and second, yes, I would be saving $4. And given this current economic rut our country is in, every $4 counts!

And how did you achieve your "average" traffic time?

**I was incorrect in my dollar figure for the toll all this time! It's $4.00, not $5.00 as I previously indicated way back in February...**


Quote from: froggie on February 17, 2009, 05:24:44 PM
A combination of speed limit-distance computation and personal experience (of which I've had a bit lately, with all these DC-Vermont trips I've been taking).

One thing I don't understand about your comment.  If it takes longer to bypass around, how can that be "moving at a faster rate of speed"?

Nice deduction.

Well, if someone is moving constantly along a side road at 40 mph, then aren't they moving faster than someone who is constantly crawling along the freeway (or tollway in this case) at 10 mph??


It feels better to go 40 than 10 even if the trip will be a hair longer because of it.  I'd do that every time just because it's not annoying.


The article does not give the full list.

State installing more red-light cameras

Associated Press - March 11, 2009

DOVER – State transportation officials say 10 more red-light cameras are set to be installed on state highways this year.

The state already has 20 cameras and state transportation officials say they handed out 40,000 red-light citations last year and made around $2 million off the cameras, but imagine several will be in New Castle County.

Transportation officials say red-light cameras make intersections safer, but some drivers say the cameras can be a safety hazard.

Crews started installing cameras this week at the Old Landing Road and Munchy Branch Road intersections on Del. 1 near Rehoboth Beach. Another camera is set to go up at the intersection of Scarborough Road and U.S. 13 in north Dover.

Transportation officials say they have the funding, but not the final approval from the state for the rest of the cameras.


Big brother is watching you!   :-P
My Flickr Photos:

I'm out of this F***KING PLACE!


I've seen many near-accidents on the beltway of my city because people brake like crazy once the light pops on orange, afraid of getting ticketed by the red light camera.

They can make intersections safer though, on places where many people are running a red light.


Historic byway gaining support
Route would traverse scenic Sussex County

April 6, 2009

A coalition of historic preservation advocates is gaining support for a proposed scenic and historic byway through western Sussex County -- basically a driving tour to attract people to the picturesque rural areas.

The 22-mile route would wind its way along country roads past an old Seaford mill, by farmhouses and mansions, crossing the Nanticoke River via the Woodland Ferry, and ending at the historic Old Christ Church outside of Laurel.

"What we'd eventually like to do is pull the corridors together and bring people from the East to the West, so they can enjoy the heritage of the western side of the county," said Dan Parsons, Sussex County's historic preservation planner.

The proposal, which has been the subject of discussions for several years, picked up some backing last week from Sussex County, which signed on as a sponsor and lent its weight to the coalition.

Officials eventually hope to gain federal funding, channeled through the Delaware Department of Transportation, for signs and information at interpretive sites, such as the Cannon-Maston House outside Seaford.

"We hope that this will bring people to the area and educate them on how the agrarian towns and sprawling farms across the route came to be, and how the passage of time has shaped and changed it," Parsons said.

The effort so far has involved historical societies and municipal officials from towns in the area, said David Ames of the University of Delaware, who has been working on the project.

"Now we need to pull it all together," Ames said.

With the county's backing, the byway application can now be sent to DelDOT for approval. Federal funding would initially go toward a corridor management plan, helping make note of and connect some of the landmarks and sites. The application is aimed for approval by next March.

"I think it's a great project," said County Councilman Mike Vincent, R-Seaford, who represents much of the area. "It's a good thing for the western part of the county."


Anyone seen what is posted on these sign bridges installed last year? I asked PennDotFan to photograph them, but I welcome anyone's.


Something about use I-495 if over 14'6", I think.


Quote from: elsmere241 on July 22, 2009, 01:44:01 PM
Something about use I-495 if over 14'6", I think.

But they already plaster that on the bottom of every Interstate 95/U.S. 202 north sign beyond the I-295 split, so why have even more signage?  :crazy:


Quote from: AARoads on July 22, 2009, 08:14:46 PM
Quote from: elsmere241 on July 22, 2009, 01:44:01 PM
Something about use I-495 if over 14'6", I think.

But they already plaster that on the bottom of every Interstate 95/U.S. 202 north sign beyond the I-295 split, so why have even more signage?  :crazy:
Because it's DelDOT and oversigning things is right up there with carbon copying signs on their priority list.
NJ Roads FTW!
Quote from: agentsteel53 on September 30, 2009, 04:04:11 PM
I-99... the Glen Quagmire of interstate routes??


Quote from: elsmere241 on July 22, 2009, 01:44:01 PM
Something about use I-495 if over 14'6", I think.

And it was briefly posted, but isn't now.  It may have been the font size being so small, like a few other newer signs that did get replaced.


DelDOT's web site lists all of the current ARRA projects now:

I've perused the list and its mostly bridge maintenance, repaving and signal improvements. The largest project I could find is money allocated to the rebuilding of the Interstate 95 Newark toll plaza to accommodate four high-speed EZPass lanes. That project has been touted for many years now and there is no indication of when it will start outside of the article mentioning 2010 or 2011.

Other projects include converting the left-hand turn lane on Delaware 2 at Albertson Boulevard to a fully protected turn and upgrading signals at a couple of other intersections.


Indian River Inlet Bridge plans previewed

The $150 million project is slated to be completed by spring 2011 after years of work. A previous attempt to build the bridge ended after sand piles used to build the approaches began to sink.


Section of Del. 9 closed near Dover AFB

QuoteA section of Del. 9 near Dover Air Force Base is closed for construction, the Delaware Department of Transportation says.

The closing will allow for connection of new interchange ramps at Del. 1 with Del. 9 and Kitts Hummock Road.

Del. 9 will be closed between Kitts Hummock Road and Bergold Lane.


So Delaware has both State Route 9 and U.S. Route 9? I thought they didn't have identical numbers within the Interstate/US Highway/State Route numbering systems?  :confused:


About time...that location has needed an interchange for a long while.

Though I wish DelDOT would include project maps in with their project webpages.  This one lacks a map, so it's hard to tell from the description if it will include eliminating the signal on southbound 1 that the dump trucks all use (about halfway between DE 9 and the Air Force Base interchange).  I hope it does...if so, this would officially extend the freeway section on DE 1 down at least through this interchange.


Quote from: Chris on September 15, 2009, 01:16:53 PM
So Delaware has both State Route 9 and U.S. Route 9? I thought they didn't have identical numbers within the Interstate/US Highway/State Route numbering systems?  :confused:
Not in Delaware.  Old US 202 is DE 202.  I can't tell you how awful that situation is.  They should have taken a page from US 322 in NJ and numbered it DE 204.  Or Business 202 would work.  At least US 9 doesn't come close to intersecting DE 9.


US-9 is a relatively recent addition to Delaware.  It used to end at the ferry in south New Jersey until the 1970s.  DE-9 has been around forever.

that said... this is Delaware - any two roads are, by definition, close together!  :pan:
live from sunny San Diego.


[sarcasm]Hey... when you have a state as big as Delaware, they may need all the numbers they can get.[/sarcasm]

I don't have opinions anymore. All I know is that no one is better than anyone else, and everyone is the best at everything

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