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Regional Boards => Mid-Atlantic => Topic started by: cpzilliacus on March 24, 2014, 05:35:54 PM

Title: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on March 24, 2014, 05:35:54 PM
Virginian-Pilot: Bridge, tunnel traffic has ups and downs after tolls (http://hamptonroads.com/2014/03/bridge-tunnel-traffic-has-ups-and-downs-after-tolls)

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Traffic at the Downtown and Midtown tunnels gradually returned - if only slightly - in the first four weeks of tolling, according to the latest look at vehicle counts.

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Average weekday volumes increased by about 5,000 vehicles at the Downtown and by about 1,000 vehicles at the Midtown by the end of February, compared with the first week after tolls started on Feb. 1, an analysis by the Hampton Roads Transportation Planning Organization found.

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Even so, the combined daily vehicle counts at the two crossings remained about 20,000 lower than the average of 126,000 trips that were recorded during a three-day stretch before tolling.

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Meanwhile, a corresponding spike in demand at two untolled crossings held mostly steady. Volumes at the High-Rise Bridge were still up 16 percent at the end of February - the same increase that the bridge saw immediately after tolling. Traffic at the Gilmerton Bridge was up 32 percent at the end of the month, compared with a 34 percent jump initially.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 1 on March 24, 2014, 09:56:56 PM
So now the city will be called Hampton Tolls?
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: hbelkins on March 24, 2014, 10:23:52 PM
Which bridge are they referring to when they mention the High-Rise Bridge?
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on March 24, 2014, 10:30:06 PM
Which bridge are they referring to when they mention the High-Rise Bridge?
The I-64 bridge over the Southern Branch of the Elizabeth River.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: hbelkins on March 24, 2014, 10:33:46 PM
That's what I suspected. I was across it at least three times this past weekend.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Thing 342 on March 25, 2014, 06:57:39 PM
Hampton Roads sure likes giving its bridges excessively generic or utilitarian names. Take the Steel Bridge in Chesapeake for example.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on March 26, 2014, 12:50:15 PM
Hampton Roads sure likes giving its bridges excessively generic or utilitarian names. Take the Steel Bridge in Chesapeake for example.

There is also an assumption that everyone knows what "HRBT" means on the variable message signs that show estimated speeds.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Takumi on March 26, 2014, 03:07:39 PM
So now the city will be called Hampton Tolls?

what

Hampton Roads is the name of the region, containing eight cities. Maybe more, if you expand the region to include Williamsburg and/or Franklin.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: NE2 on March 26, 2014, 03:08:42 PM
Right now it's Hampton Freeze.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on March 26, 2014, 04:16:17 PM
Not quite…we're above freezing.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on March 26, 2014, 05:10:05 PM
Not quite…we're above freezing.

In theory, the D.C. area was above freezing today, but it sure as Hades did not feel that way!
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Thing 342 on March 31, 2014, 10:11:21 PM
So now the city will be called Hampton Tolls?

what

Hampton Roads is the name of the region, containing eight cities. Maybe more, if you expand the region to include Williamsburg and/or Franklin.

I would argue that several of them (Chesapeake, Suffolk, and Virginia Beach) should really go back to being counties. Where is 'downtown' Chesapeake?
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on March 31, 2014, 11:26:31 PM
So now the city will be called Hampton Tolls?

what

Hampton Roads is the name of the region, containing eight cities. Maybe more, if you expand the region to include Williamsburg and/or Franklin.

I would argue that several of them (Chesapeake, Suffolk, and Virginia Beach) should really go back to being counties. Where is 'downtown' Chesapeake?

Certainly those three have land areas (and land use) that one would normally associate with a county. 

But remember that they became cities in part to thwart annexation efforts by the "old" cities in Hampton Roads, Norfolk and Portsmouth.  There have not been any "hostile" annexations of unincorporated areas by cities for many years in Virginia (there is a de-facto moratorium that was imposed by the General Assembly sometime in the 1970's (there were a few pretty ugly annexation wars between Fairfax County and the City of Alexandria in the 1960's that may have helped to put the matter on hold)).

Right now, if counties and cities can agree on land that a city wants to annex, it can be done.  Manassas has annexed some parts of Prince William County along Va. 234 after the city and the county came to an agreement.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: ARMOURERERIC on April 01, 2014, 01:28:20 AM
I lived in Huntington Heights in the early 1990's, I saw a photo of Huntington Ave at 64th street from around 1952, where Huntington was 2 way,  and a sign assembly northbound had a bannered US 60 sign, a 3 line milage sign with Warwick, Williamsburg, and Richmond and below, "Entering Warwick County"
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on April 01, 2014, 08:28:21 AM
Would've been the last days of that sign, as it was in 1952 that Warwick County became an independent city (at first, Warwick, separate from Newport News…the two later merged in 1958).
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on April 16, 2014, 01:36:26 PM
Virginian Pilot opinion: Tunnel toll issues add insult to injury (http://hamptonroads.com/2014/04/tunnel-toll-issues-add-insult-injury)

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Commuters hostage to tolls at the Midtown and Downtown tunnels cannot even take comfort in the precision by which they are charged for every trip.

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Since tolls began on Feb. 1, the all-electronic system that charges motorists for trips through the tunnels has overcharged and delayed charges against E-ZPass accounts.

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Software changes and communications breakdowns in computer hardware have caused the recent glitches. Those hang-ups join a litany of offenses generated by the tolls.

Virginian Pilot:  Tunnel tolls prove cushier than expected for operator (http://hamptonroads.com/2014/04/tunnel-tolls-prove-cushier-expected-operator)

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Lighter traffic at the Downtown and Midtown tunnels since tolling started Feb. 1 hasn't cramped the finances of the private operator.

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Far from it. While fewer vehicles are using the tunnels than before, the number didn't fall nearly as much as Elizabeth River Crossings had forecast.

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That higher-than-expected demand - along with a state subsidy that reduced toll rates until a new Midtown tube is finished in 2016 - means the financial risk continues to shrink for the companies behind a $2 billion public-private deal.

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Combined traffic counts at the tunnels, including weekends, have held steady at about 94,000 vehicles a day since tolling began, Elizabeth River Crossings CFO Tony Evans said.

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That's about 30,000 fewer than what the tunnels saw in February 2013, but well above the 78,000 average daily vehicles the company had budgeted for the start of tolling.

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"The traffic we're getting now is more like what we would have expected to get at end of the year," Evans said.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on April 17, 2014, 01:17:55 PM
Virginia getting rid of E-ZPass monthly fees (https://www.aaroads.com/forum/index.php?topic=294.msg293207#msg293207)
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Duke87 on April 19, 2014, 12:12:33 AM
Hampton Roads sure likes giving its bridges excessively generic or utilitarian names. Take the Steel Bridge in Chesapeake for example.

There is also an assumption that everyone knows what "HRBT" means on the variable message signs that show estimated speeds.

Hardly unique. I remember signs on I-10 heading west out of Los Angeles listing the travel time to "PCH".

New York City as well is commonly guilty of this: "HRD", "BRP", "HRP", "HHP", "GCP", and "CIP" will all show up on VMSs without explanation of what they mean.

Sometimes space is at a premium and you simply can't spell out the name of something more than that.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Alps on April 19, 2014, 01:30:52 PM
Hampton Roads sure likes giving its bridges excessively generic or utilitarian names. Take the Steel Bridge in Chesapeake for example.

There is also an assumption that everyone knows what "HRBT" means on the variable message signs that show estimated speeds.

Hardly unique. I remember signs on I-10 heading west out of Los Angeles listing the travel time to "PCH".

New York City as well is commonly guilty of this: "HRD", "BRP", "HRP", "HHP", "GCP", and "CIP" will all show up on VMSs without explanation of what they mean.

Sometimes space is at a premium and you simply can't spell out the name of something more than that.
VMS around here are saying "NEW YORK BOUND PULASKI SKYWAY CLOSED." If you're limited to an 8x3 grid, I would assume this is "NY BOUND SKYWAY CLOSED" and you're expected to know what the Skyway is. (Or "INBOUND SKYWAY" - and you should know where Inbound is.)
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: amroad17 on April 19, 2014, 09:08:24 PM
So now the city will be called Hampton Tolls?

what

Hampton Roads is the name of the region, containing eight cities. Maybe more, if you expand the region to include Williamsburg and/or Franklin.

I would argue that several of them (Chesapeake, Suffolk, and Virginia Beach) should really go back to being counties. Where is 'downtown' Chesapeake?
Downtown Chesapeake is usually considered to be the Great Bridge area of the city.  City Hall is located at the western edge of the area (along VA 165).  When the new City Hall was finished in the mid 1980's, we used to jokingly call it the "Taj Mahal."

Chesapeake is actually made up of six boroughs: South Norfolk (northern edge of the city near Norfolk), Pleasant Grove (the rural southern portion south of Deep Creek), Butts Road (the rural southeastern portion of the city), Washington (the industrial area near southern Portsmouth along Military Hwy. and US 17), Great Bridge (the area encompassing the center portion of the city), and Western Branch (the west/northwest portion of the city--where I lived for nearly 20 years).  Each borough, except Pleasant Grove and Butts Road to some extent, has a "downtown area."

Virginia Beach is also a city made up of seven boroughs: Bayside, Blackwater, Kempsville, Lynnhaven, Princess Anne, Pungo, and Virginia Beach.  The Virginia Beach "downtown area" is much harder to discern.  City Hall is located out of the way near the Princess Anne community but most people say that the Pembroke area [the Va. Beach Blvd (US 58) and Independence Road (VA 225) intersection] is the de-facto downtown area.   

Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on April 28, 2014, 05:27:15 PM
DelmarvaNow.com: CBBT will bid tunnel (http://www.delmarvanow.com/article/20140426/NEWS40/304260005/CBBT-will-bid-tunnel-project)

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The Chesapeake Bay Bridge and Tunnel Commission has voted to end consideration of an unsolicited proposal to construct the new parallel tunnel at Thimble Shoals, citing a desire to competitively bid the project.

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“The amount of money that’s going to be available in this area for mega-construction projects in going to be drastically increased,” said Fredrick Stant, commission chairman, “so we feel that is going to breed competition.”

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Skanska, parent company of Cape Charles’ Bayshore Concrete, was part of the consortium that submitted the proposal under Virginia’s Public-Private Partnership Act to design, build, and operate the tunnel.

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The end of the consortium’s unsolicited bid does not end the parallel tunnel project; rather, it means the bridge-tunnel staff will continue to develop specifications so that the project can be competitively bid.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on May 15, 2014, 03:38:18 PM
PilotOnline.com: 1 dead after tractor-trailer goes off Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel (http://hamptonroads.com/2014/05/1-dead-after-tractortrailer-goes-chesapeake-bay-bridgetunnel)

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A tractor-trailer plunged over the side of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel this morning, killing the driver who had tried to avoid crashing into a maintenance vehicle.

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It happened shortly after 10 a.m. as a maintenance crew was patching pavement at mile marker 15 of the northbound span, said Tom Anderson, a bridge-tunnel spokesman. The lane was partially closed and the rig hit the maintenance truck, jackknifed and crashed over the west side, near the high-rise section close to the Eastern Shore.

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"The driver of the tractor-trailer must not have seen the detail," Anderson said.

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The maintenance truck hit had a special cushion to protect workers, who were not injured, Anderson said.

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A Navy Special Warfare Combatant-craft Crewman team was training in the area and went to the scene to assist, according to the Navy.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on July 08, 2014, 11:39:22 AM
[H/T Adam (Froggie)]

Chesapeake Bay Bridge and Tunnel District Press Release: CBBT’s Parallel Thimble Shoal Tunnel Project Added to Hampton Roads Long Range Transportation Plan and Transportation Improvement Program (http://www.cbbt.com/paralleltunnelproject/HRTPOlrtptip14.html)

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The Hampton Roads Transportation Planning Organization (HRTPO) approved an amendment to add the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel’s Parallel Thimble Shoal Tunnel Project (the Project) to the Hampton Roads 2034 Long Range Transportation Plan (LRTP) and Hampton Roads 2012-2015 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) at its Board meeting on June 19, 2014. 

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The Project will add an additional two-lane tunnel under the Thimble Shoal Channel to expand the capacity and improve the safety for travelers who utilize the CBBT and to protect the economic competitiveness and livability of the region through enhanced resiliency as the CBBT serves as the sole connection between the Delmarva Peninsula and the Hampton Roads area.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on November 29, 2014, 07:07:48 PM
WAVY.COM: Drivers’ message to ERC: Higher tolls equal less tunnel use (http://wavy.com/2014/11/25/drivers-message-to-erc-higher-tolls-equal-less-tunnel-use/)

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PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — 10 On Your Side is telling your stories about the impact of tunnel tolls, and the projected hardship of increased tolls, possible next year.

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Aliyah Douglass lives in Portsmouth and works in Norfolk. Tim Hatton lives in Virginia Beach, but works in Portsmouth. What do they have in common? They both pay tolls every weekday to get to work through they Downtown and Midtown tunnels. And both say the tolls are changing the way they live.

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“Anytime I use the tunnel, I put it on this spreadsheet,” said Hatton, who works at Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Portsmouth.

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Hatton’s hardcore record keeping is in the spreadsheets he creates. He doesn’t trust Elizabeth River Crossings to get his bill correct: “They had my account incorrect, and I had to call them to fix it. They would say, ‘oh, we’re working on it, I will give you a call back.'”

Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Thing 342 on December 01, 2014, 09:23:03 PM
WAVY.COM: Drivers’ message to ERC: Higher tolls equal less tunnel use (http://wavy.com/2014/11/25/drivers-message-to-erc-higher-tolls-equal-less-tunnel-use/)

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PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — 10 On Your Side is telling your stories about the impact of tunnel tolls, and the projected hardship of increased tolls, possible next year.

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Aliyah Douglass lives in Portsmouth and works in Norfolk. Tim Hatton lives in Virginia Beach, but works in Portsmouth. What do they have in common? They both pay tolls every weekday to get to work through they Downtown and Midtown tunnels. And both say the tolls are changing the way they live.

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“Anytime I use the tunnel, I put it on this spreadsheet,” said Hatton, who works at Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Portsmouth.

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Hatton’s hardcore record keeping is in the spreadsheets he creates. He doesn’t trust Elizabeth River Crossings to get his bill correct: “They had my account incorrect, and I had to call them to fix it. They would say, ‘oh, we’re working on it, I will give you a call back.'”
It seems every other week that WAVY puts out some story about people moaning about the tolls and seeming to forget that the tunnels were tolled as recently as 1989.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on December 01, 2014, 11:13:59 PM
It seems every other week that WAVY puts out some story about people moaning about the tolls and seeming to forget that the tunnels were tolled as recently as 1989.

Your point about the crossings being tolled is spot-on correct.

IMO, expensive bridge and/or tunnel infrastructure like this should not be de-tolled.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on December 24, 2014, 03:42:27 PM
WTOP Radio: Lawmaker: Herring to probe Va. tunnel toll late fees (http://wtop.com/sprawl-crawl/2014/12/lawmaker-herring-probe-va-tunnel-toll-late-fees/)

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — A lawmaker says state Attorney General Mark Herring’s office will look into late fees that Elizabeth River Crossings adds to motorists’ bills on unpaid tunnel toll invoices.

Sen. Kenny Alexander told The Virginian-Pilot (http://bit.ly/1C14nwC (http://bit.ly/1C14nwC)) that Herring’s office agreed to research the $25 fees that are tacked on when an invoice goes unpaid for more than 30 days and again when a second violation notice is sent.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on December 26, 2014, 08:43:19 PM
The Virginian-Pilot op-ed: Tolls are likely here to stay, but do they really have to be everywhere? (http://hamptonroads.com/2014/12/tolls-are-likely-here-stay-do-they-really-have-be-everywhere)

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Everyone wants something for less. From food to clothes, cars to homes, no one wants to pay extra if given the choice.

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So it's no surprise that the Chesapeake City Council unanimously passed a resolution last week urging no tolls on a section of Interstate 64 that includes the High-Rise Bridge. State officials are now studying how to widen an 8-mile stretch of I-64, roughly between I-664 and I-464.

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Did anybody really expect council members to say, "Toll us. We won't mind"? That would be political suicide.

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The no-toll vote occurred even though Aubrey Layne, the state's top transportation official, told The Pilot's Dave Forster "it's a very low probability" the congested section of highway in Chesapeake could be built without tolls. The project will cost around $2 billion.

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It's become an unpleasant fact of life in South Hampton Roads. Even with new state and regional dollars coming in, many highway construction projects are just fancy blueprints if they lack tolls.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Takumi on December 26, 2014, 11:07:09 PM
Driving through the area today, Military Highway traffic was fairly steady (it was rush hour) but nothing bad, especially at the Gilmerton Bridge. I'm sure if I-64 were to get tolled it would be worse.

On a semi-related note, the Dominion Boulevard construction at VA 165 was progressing fairly well.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Tom958 on December 26, 2014, 11:57:18 PM
How can widening the "8-mile stretch of I-64, roughly between I-664 and I-464" possibly cost $2 billion?
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Pink Jazz on December 27, 2014, 12:16:50 AM
How can widening the "8-mile stretch of I-64, roughly between I-664 and I-464" possibly cost $2 billion?

I presume it would require a complete replacement of the High Rise Bridge over the southern branch of the Elizabeth River.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on February 10, 2015, 10:19:16 PM
WVEC TV Channel 13: Survey: Tolls provide some benefit for drivers while unpopularity grows (http://www.13newsnow.com/story/news/local/2015/02/09/survey-tolls-provide-some-benefit-for-drivers-while-unpopularity-grows/23156421/)

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Results from a survey by Christopher Newport University's Judy Ford Wason Center for Public Policy shows there have been some benefits for drivers since tolling began at the Downtown and Midtown Tunnels.

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The popularity of those tolls has lessened since they were put in place in February, 2014.

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The survey is the second part of a two-part poll commissioned by the Hampton Roads Transportation Planning Organization.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 1995hoo on February 11, 2015, 09:21:04 AM
How can widening the "8-mile stretch of I-64, roughly between I-664 and I-464" possibly cost $2 billion?

I presume it would require a complete replacement of the High Rise Bridge over the southern branch of the Elizabeth River.

Almost certainly; in addition, there are likely to be various environmental and wetlands regulations in place now that didn't exist when the road was built that would complicate matters and drive up the cost. The road probably could not be built in that same location were it to be proposed today.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on March 16, 2015, 10:43:02 AM
WAVY-TV (10): Transportation secretary lacks confidence in ERT for new tolls (http://wavy.com/2015/03/13/transportation-secretary-lacks-confidence-in-ert-for-new-tolls/)

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PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — More tolls are guaranteed for Hampton Roads. The question is: how many and when? 10 On Your Side sat down with Transportation Secretary Aubrey Layne Friday, who raised concern about the tolls slated to start next spring at the MLK Expressway.

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“I don’t have a lot of confidence,” Layne said. “We haven’t gotten it right yet, and we’re going to add another level of complexity.”

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Layne referred to the billing troubles incurred with Elizabeth River Tunnels. 10 On Your Side has reported on problems of over billing, billing for trips not taken and late fees for people who never received a bill in the first place.

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The MLK extension project will start new tolls next March, and by design, certain drivers will not have to pay.

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“I’m concerned to make sure we get that right, because that was a negotiated part of the contract that you’re getting on and off in the city of Portsmouth, you shouldn’t have to pay a toll,” Layne said.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: ARMOURERERIC on March 16, 2015, 11:05:56 PM
Has the MLK extension to 264 started yet?
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Thing 342 on March 17, 2015, 08:16:19 AM
Has the MLK extension to 264 started yet?
It started at least a year ago. There have periodic lane closures along I-264 to install girders for overpasses at the interchange. Not sure about when it's supposed to be finished.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Mapmikey on March 17, 2015, 08:24:01 AM
The project website says the MLK Extension is to be completed in the 4th Qtr of 2016...

Mapmikey
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on March 17, 2015, 08:47:01 AM
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Has the MLK extension to 264 started yet?

As others noted, yes.  We toured some of the grading and bridgework at I-264 during the Hampton Roads meet last year.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: ARMOURERERIC on March 17, 2015, 05:40:47 PM
Thanks, was watching GSV, but nothing showed up yet.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on May 05, 2015, 10:43:33 PM
[H/T Adam (Froggie)]

Chesapeake Bay Bridge and Tunnel District Press Release: CBBT’s Parallel Thimble Shoal Tunnel Project Added to Hampton Roads Long Range Transportation Plan and Transportation Improvement Program (http://www.cbbt.com/paralleltunnelproject/HRTPOlrtptip14.html)

The CBBTD is moving ahead with the Parallel Thimble Shoal Tunnel Project, and has added a new section to its Web site, appropriately labeled Parallel Thimble Shoal Channel Tunnel Project (http://cbbt.com/parallelthimbletunneloverview.html).

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The Chesapeake Bay Bridge and Tunnel District is hereby providing advance notice of its intent to issue a Request for Qualifications ("RFQ") for the design and construction of the Parallel Thimble Shoal Tunnel. For more information, click here (http://cbbt.com/paralleltunnelproject/NoticeofIntent15.html).
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on May 19, 2015, 04:42:01 PM
Some late updates regarding the US 17/Dominion Blvd/Steel Bridge project.  Putting them here since the new Steel Bridge will become a toll crossing once construction is complete.  Those who attended my 2014 Hampton Roads meet may recall that this project was a big part of the meet.

According to the city's project page (http://www.cityofchesapeake.net/government/City-Departments/Departments/Public-Works-Department/Divisions/bridges/bridges-steel/bridges-dominion-blvd-improvements.htm), there were some significant realignments that occurred over the winter.  At the time of our meet, construction was well underway on one of the new spans, and US 17 traffic was temporarily rerouted via Bainbridge Blvd.  By December, the future northbound bridge was completed and traffic was rerouted onto it in a 2-lane/2-way configuration.  The website says traffic was shifted on December 15.  The old drawbridge can now be removed so that the future southbound bridge can be built.

With traffic shifted to the new northbound bridge, Bainbridge Blvd is permanently closed at Dominion.  In addition, the connector between Bainbridge and Dominion at Dominion Lakes Blvd is now closed as well as a new permanent connection between Bainbridge and Dominion is built there this year.

At Dominion Lakes Blvd, the east half of the interchange is effectively complete.  Southbound Dominion traffic is using the future northbound bridge, while both northbound Dominion traffic and local traffic to/from Dominion Lakes Blvd are using the future northbound ramps.

At Great Bridge Blvd (VA 190), Dominion Blvd traffic is using the future ramps on each side while the overpasses are built.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on May 19, 2015, 05:31:36 PM
The Virginian-Pilot via hamptonroads.com [Opinion]:  No chance to make lemonade in Portsmouth (http://hamptonroads.com/2015/05/no-chance-make-lemonade-portsmouth)

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Tolls at the Downtown and Midtown tunnels are hampering business and stifling economic recovery in Portsmouth. In other words, they're doing precisely what opponents warned they would.

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The ridiculous fees, foolishly negotiated by former Gov. Bob McDonnell's administration and upheld by the state Supreme Court, are part of a 58-year partnership between the state and Elizabeth River Crossings, the private consortium overseeing construction of a new Midtown tube and renovation of the Downtown Tunnel.

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Under terms of the deal, tolls were set to start in 2013 at $1.84 one way for cars at rush hour, and $1.59 for cars during non-peak hours. McDonnell used other state funds to delay those tolls for a year.

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Shortly after taking office, Gov. Terry McAuliffe used bonds and other undesignated state funds to slash the rush-hour tolls to $1 one way for cars last year, with an increase of 25 cents built in annually until 2017, when rates return to $1.84. In subsequent years, original provisions of the contract would allow ERC to hike tolls by 3.5 percent or more annually.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on May 19, 2015, 05:35:46 PM
Some late updates regarding the US 17/Dominion Blvd/Steel Bridge project.  Putting them here since the new Steel Bridge will become a toll crossing once construction is complete.  Those who attended my 2014 Hampton Roads meet may recall that this project was a big part of the meet.

Thank you.  That was a fine meet, and an interesting project. 

The City of Chesapeake is becoming quite the toll road operator (I cannot name another municipality in the U.S. that directly operates two toll facilities).

Interesting that they are touting the fact that Chesapeake, and not a private operator like ERC (see editorial above) will own the new crossing.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on May 19, 2015, 06:29:50 PM
The Virginian-Pilot via hamptonroads.com [Opinion]:  No chance to make lemonade in Portsmouth (http://hamptonroads.com/2015/05/no-chance-make-lemonade-portsmouth)

Story that is behind the editorial above:

The Virginian-Pilot via hamptonroads.com: Study: Tunnel tolls are hurting Portsmouth badly (http://hamptonroads.com/2015/05/study-tunnel-tolls-are-hurting-portsmouth-badly)

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Tolls, tunnel closures and related road construction projects are hurting Portsmouth badly, according to the latest study on the impact of the Downtown and Midtown tunnel tolls.

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Perhaps the most significant finding is an estimate showing the city is missing out on $24 million in taxable revenue a year.

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"The danger for Portsmouth is what that number is likely to increase to in the future if businesses go out of business," said James Koch, the Old Dominion University economist who did the $18,000 study for the city.

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Tolls on the tunnels began Feb. 1, 2014, to pay for a new Midtown Tunnel and other projects.

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The study also makes clear what many have long suspected: Portsmouth is affected by the tolls much more than any other city, and fewer drivers are passing through the tunnel.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Thing 342 on May 19, 2015, 07:15:14 PM
The Virginian-Pilot via hamptonroads.com [Opinion]:  No chance to make lemonade in Portsmouth (http://hamptonroads.com/2015/05/no-chance-make-lemonade-portsmouth)

Story that is behind the editorial above:

The Virginian-Pilot via hamptonroads.com: Study: Tunnel tolls are hurting Portsmouth badly (http://hamptonroads.com/2015/05/study-tunnel-tolls-are-hurting-portsmouth-badly)

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Tolls, tunnel closures and related road construction projects are hurting Portsmouth badly, according to the latest study on the impact of the Downtown and Midtown tunnel tolls.

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Perhaps the most significant finding is an estimate showing the city is missing out on $24 million in taxable revenue a year.

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"The danger for Portsmouth is what that number is likely to increase to in the future if businesses go out of business," said James Koch, the Old Dominion University economist who did the $18,000 study for the city.

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Tolls on the tunnels began Feb. 1, 2014, to pay for a new Midtown Tunnel and other projects.

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The study also makes clear what many have long suspected: Portsmouth is affected by the tolls much more than any other city, and fewer drivers are passing through the tunnel.

What a load of BS. The article advertises the loss of $24M in taxable revenues, but downplays the fact that this only means a loss of about $360,000 in revenues, a drop in the bucket compared to the city's $242M in annual tax revenues. For comparison,  All this study does is give the city government another excuse for their growing incompetence. It's quite ironic that the ones who complained the loudest for the tunnel expansion are now the ones complaining the loudest about tolls.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on May 20, 2015, 04:17:06 PM
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It's quite ironic that the ones who complained the loudest for the tunnel expansion are now the ones complaining the loudest about tolls.

You may or may not recall that Portsmouth was against the tolls from the onset, and even went as far as pushing a lawsuit against the reinstated tolls before the project even began.

Norfolk was the one pushing tunnel expansion more than Portsmouth, as they are more directly impacted by tunnel congestion, especially at the Midtown Tunnel.  Hampton Blvd routinely backs up through West Ghent, and on bad days I've seen it backed up as far as ODU.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on May 22, 2015, 06:02:06 PM
WAVY.COM: Hampton Roads leaders discuss long-range transportation projects (http://wavy.com/2015/05/21/hampton-roads-leaders-discuss-transportation-projects/)

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In the annual Hampton Roads Transportation Planning Organization (HRTPO) retreat, leaders found out what projects are part of the long-range plan, that spans over the next 25 years.  They discussed funding and which projects should get priority, when it comes to spending tax dollars.

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“We have to make sure, as a region, that we have consensus on what projects we’re going to go forward with and prioritize, so that’s the challenge,” HRTPO Board Chairman and Newport News Mayor McKinley Price said.

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There were more than 200 projects submitted that would cost more than $24 billion to accomplish. They range from improvements to highways and bridges to the light rail in Virginia Beach and even bike trails. Each project was scored, based on five criteria, and those scores will determine which projects make the long-range plan.

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After the meeting, Secretary Layne told 10 On Your Side’s Brandi Cummings, “I wanted to bring two messages today: one, explain new legislation, working with the state and how their projects could be scored and looked at better to attract state funding. But, also to bring some realism into the process. There are some additional monies, but not nearly enough to do everything.”

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One of the key things Layne discussed at the meeting was the impact of tolls in the future and how they will play into the future development of transportation in Hampton Roads.

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“Unfortunately, there is just not enough money for these large bridge and water process to be constructed. They’re billions of dollars, without additional revenue, and that typically means tolls,” Layne said. “But we can be smart about that … for instance, if we have a toll, we always [should] have a free alternative.”

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Secretary Layne also had a lot to say about Route 460 and the Midtown-Downtown tunnels. He said those projects have some major flaws.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: skluth on May 24, 2015, 12:59:02 AM
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It's quite ironic that the ones who complained the loudest for the tunnel expansion are now the ones complaining the loudest about tolls.

You may or may not recall that Portsmouth was against the tolls from the onset, and even went as far as pushing a lawsuit against the reinstated tolls before the project even began.

Norfolk was the one pushing tunnel expansion more than Portsmouth, as they are more directly impacted by tunnel congestion, especially at the Midtown Tunnel.  Hampton Blvd routinely backs up through West Ghent, and on bad days I've seen it backed up as far as ODU.

Yep. Traffic no longer backs up through Portsmouth residential neighborhoods. Most Portsmouth residents know how to cut through Port Norfolk to get to the Midtown. (Obviously doesn't work for most Churchland residents.) As a former resident of Shea Terrace I was upset when we lost our little ramp to the MLK off Booker Street.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on June 13, 2015, 10:57:00 PM
WAVY-Channel 10: Another issue with tunnel toll billing surfaces (http://wavy.com/2015/06/11/another-issue-with-tunnel-toll-billing-surfaces/)

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A viewer contacted 10 On Your Side, after she got a tunnel toll bill for nearly $750.

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The Elizabeth River Tunnels bill shows her going through the Downtown Tunnel, eastbound AND westbound on the same day — at the exact same time, 12 p.m.

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The bill, with charges dating back to September, is on a pink piece of paper, which the agency says is a final notice. 10 On Your Side has heard from another viewer with the same issue.

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ERT told WAVY.com the dates are correct, but the time stamp is wrong for the final notices from that time period. They say they think it’s because of a glitch from when the company had to stop billing temporarily, amid changes to their billing system in October.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on June 26, 2015, 01:58:37 PM
WAVY-Channel 10: Is toll money being used on inexperienced tunnel washers? (http://wavy.com/2015/06/25/is-toll-money-being-used-on-inexperienced-tunnel-washers/)

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10 On Your Side was told the new company contracted to clean the Midtown Tunnel is inexperienced and can’t do the job. Was that sour grapes from the more experienced company that used to clean the tunnel, or was it truth?

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10 On Your Side went down to check out both tunnels when they were being cleaned Monday and Wednesday nights.

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“He is a wannabe tunnel washer that is bidding on a statewide contract,” said the owner of Ken Barlow Cleaning Services.

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Those are harsh words are from the experienced tunnel washer, Ken Barlow, who cleans several tunnels around the country and has for years. On Monday night, WAVY.com saw his crew moving quickly through the Downtown Tunnel with power washers.

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Barlow is irked that newcomer Saleem Raja and his company, ETI Environmental, is taking away his business.

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“When he submitted the bid, he didn’t have any customers. He is not qualified, and there is no one who can attest to his being qualified,” Barlow said.

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Barlow protested VDOT awarding Raja with a contract for the HRBT and MMMBT when he had no letters of reference from past customers. VDOT agreed and reopened the bids.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: xcellntbuy on June 26, 2015, 08:14:55 PM
Sounds like the Commonwealth of Virginia procurement folks got back door pressure to award the tunnel cleaning contract to a minority, women, historically underutilized or disadvantaged business enterprise and forgot their own specific process and basic specifications.  When a bidder is right, they are right.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on June 27, 2015, 07:20:54 PM
Sounds like the Commonwealth of Virginia procurement folks got back door pressure to award the tunnel cleaning contract to a minority, women, historically underutilized or disadvantaged business enterprise and forgot their own specific process and basic specifications.  When a bidder is right, they are right.

Though the holder of the concession for the Elizabeth River toll crossings does presumably not have to abide by VDOT or Commonwealth of Virginia procurement rules, but whoever is doing the cleaning of the tubes at the MMMBT and HRBT probably does. 

All of them ought to go see how the MdTA cleans the walls of the six  tubes (I-895 and I-95) under Baltimore Harbor.  That's how to do it right - added bonus, they use cleaning equiment mounted on Mercedes Unimog trucks for an added cool factor (I am not much of  a fan of the three-pointed star in general, but the Unimogs (pretty uncommon in the U.S.) are an exception).
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on July 13, 2015, 12:39:36 PM
WAVY-TV (10): AG to probe admin fees added to tunnel toll bills (http://wavy.com/2015/07/10/ag-to-probe-admin-fees-added-to-tunnel-toll-bills/)

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Attorney General Mark Herring says he will work with the transportation department to determine the legality of administrative fees that are added to delinquent toll bills.

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Elizabeth River Crossings adds fees of $25 for delinquent bills, and in some cases $10 per tunnel trip, for drivers who use the Downtown and Midtown tunnels.

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Herring issued a legal opinion on the fees at the request of State Senator Ken Alexander (D-Norfolk). The opinion says fees can be charged, if they are used to cover the actual costs of recovering delinquent tolls. They cannot be charged as means of raising revenue or offsetting a budget shortfall.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Mapmikey on July 21, 2015, 04:27:44 PM
Announced on July 10: Tolls will NOT be imposed on the MLK Freeway Extension project.  Virginia bought out the tolls with $78M that had been set aside for the US 460 boondoggle.

http://www.virginiadot.org/newsroom/statewide/2015/gov._mcauliffe_announces_deal84307.asp

Mike
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on October 18, 2015, 04:11:41 PM
Washington Post: Agreement for new submerged tunnel in Norfolk leaves Virginia underwater (https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/trafficandcommuting/agreement-for-new-submerged-tunnel-in-norfolk-leaves-virginia-underwater/2015/10/17/f03b68f4-566b-11e5-8bb1-b488d231bba2_story.html)

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The private proposal to build a new underwater tunnel in this congested port city was originally billed as a way for Virginia to get a crucial piece of infrastructure without having to put in a single dollar of state money.

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Instead, Virginia officials have agreed to spend slightly more than $580 million on the project, more than twice the investment from the companies behind the deal. With no competition, the companies won the right to collect billions of dollars in tolls over 58 years.

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The state also agreed that the companies — Swedish construction giant Skanska and Sydney-based finance group Macquarie — are entitled to large government payouts if Virginia builds or expands other bridges or tunnels nearby, making fixing other traffic woes more costly for generations to come.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Rothman on October 19, 2015, 10:14:27 AM
Washington Post: Agreement for new submerged tunnel in Norfolk leaves Virginia underwater (https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/trafficandcommuting/agreement-for-new-submerged-tunnel-in-norfolk-leaves-virginia-underwater/2015/10/17/f03b68f4-566b-11e5-8bb1-b488d231bba2_story.html)

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The private proposal to build a new underwater tunnel in this congested port city was originally billed as a way for Virginia to get a crucial piece of infrastructure without having to put in a single dollar of state money.

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Instead, Virginia officials have agreed to spend slightly more than $580 million on the project, more than twice the investment from the companies behind the deal. With no competition, the companies won the right to collect billions of dollars in tolls over 58 years.

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The state also agreed that the companies — Swedish construction giant Skanska and Sydney-based finance group Macquarie — are entitled to large government payouts if Virginia builds or expands other bridges or tunnels nearby, making fixing other traffic woes more costly for generations to come.

Egads.  Along with the US 460 debacle, VA is starting to look like it can waste money like no other state's business.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on October 19, 2015, 10:31:30 AM
Egads.  Along with the US 460 debacle, VA is starting to look like it can waste money like no other state's business.

I really think the Virginia Public Private Transportation Act was not written to benefit Virginia taxpayers and highway users, and the 460 disaster and this deal seem to validate that assertion.

Don't forget about the Va. 895 (Pocahontas Parkway) debacle.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on October 19, 2015, 01:07:54 PM
I think the intentions behind the PPTA act are good.  The problem is that state officials negotiated very poorly on behalf of the state and taxpayers, and the private/business conglomerates taking on these projects took full advantage of that poor bargaining.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on October 19, 2015, 01:31:03 PM
I think the intentions behind the PPTA act are good.  The problem is that state officials negotiated very poorly on behalf of the state and taxpayers, and the private/business conglomerates taking on these projects took full advantage of that poor bargaining.

The PPTA was sold by its advocates in the administration of Gov. George Allen (R) as being a way to build highway infrastructure faster and at lower cost (and especially a way to prevent statewide motor fuel tax increases, since most rural parts of the state, where capacity is not needed, absolutely do not want to help to fund expensive projects in Hampton Roads and Northern Virginia - or along the I-95 and I-81 corridors).
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: AlexandriaVA on October 19, 2015, 02:43:47 PM
I think the intentions behind the PPTA act are good.  The problem is that state officials negotiated very poorly on behalf of the state and taxpayers, and the private/business conglomerates taking on these projects took full advantage of that poor bargaining.

The PPTA was sold by its advocates in the administration of Gov. George Allen (R) as being a way to build highway infrastructure faster and at lower cost (and especially a way to prevent statewide motor fuel tax increases, since most rural parts of the state, where capacity is not needed, absolutely do not want to help to fund expensive projects in Hampton Roads and Northern Virginia - or along the I-95 and I-81 corridors).

And I'm tired of my tax money absolutely supporting rural areas in the form of transfer subsidies. Sorry, but those economically depressed parts are doing much more taking than giving, and your comment only reinforces this odd notion that somehow Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads are the reason why these counties are poor.

The PPTA was sold because lobbyists told Richmond to sell it. McDonnel's plight shows that Virginia policymakers can be bought and sold, and for rather cheap. I'm sure that the political components of most state's highway administrations are similar (i.e. take a guess why so many State-level secretaries of transportation wind up on the board of directotors of some firm relating to road construction after their tentures). Ultimately, the citizens will wind up paying for a project, and instead of money going to a public authority and become invested in public works, it will go to a corporation's profit sheet and distributed to its owners.

Southerners love to goad all things NJ and NY, but at leat the PANY-NJ produces and runs stuff of use. What does Virginia have to show for its wasted experiments with these partnerships? Not much. Frankly, I'd kill for a Northern Virginia authority that could serve the public as well as PANY-NJ could.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on February 12, 2016, 03:59:19 PM
In July [2015], the CBBTD received proposals from six contractor teams to build a new tunnel parallel to the existing Thimble Shoal Tunnel (that's the southern tube of the two).  Details here (http://www.cbbt.com/whats-new/projects/parallel-thimble-tunnel-overview/).

Most of the proposals call for immersed-tube construction, which is how many other tunnels have been constructed.  At least one team is proposing a bored tunnel, which I find peculiar, since both ends of this tunnel are underwater.  So that presumably means that a tunnel boring machine (TBM) has to be lowered into the water to a "launch" trench to start the bore. 

The immersed tube tunnel method seems less-complex to me (and I have zero experience in any of this).  Your thoughts?

Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on February 12, 2016, 04:53:32 PM
A bored tunnel also requires that there be stable rock underneath to bore through.  I don't see that being feasible here since there's considerable muck at the bottom of the Bay.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 1995hoo on February 12, 2016, 05:22:35 PM
A bored tunnel also requires that there be stable rock underneath to bore through.  I don't see that being feasible here since there's considerable muck at the bottom of the Bay.

The islands are man-made islands as well, right? Would that further complicate a bore?
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on February 13, 2016, 12:14:43 AM
A bored tunnel also requires that there be stable rock underneath to bore through.  I don't see that being feasible here since there's considerable muck at the bottom of the Bay.

Yeah, there is not much in the way of rock under the Chesapeake Bay anywhere (the link below has a page that discusses what the geotechnical investigations have revealed).  It appears to be mostly mud and sand.  I am a fan of TBM's, and in spite of the problems with Bertha in Seattle, Washington, these are often a good solution to getting a tunnel built, sometimes even though soft and mucky soils.  The Channel Tunnel between England and France was partly through (relatively) dry chalky marl, but things were wetter toward the French coast. 

But the second Thimble Shoal Tunnel is relatively short (and presumably relatively shallow). According to a CBBT presentation (http://www.cbbt.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/RFQShowingPP0512815.pdf) (.pdf) to prospective bidders, the lowest part of the new tunnel is apparently to be 1,000 feet long at 80 feet below mean low water.

A bored tunnel also requires that there be stable rock underneath to bore through.  I don't see that being feasible here since there's considerable muck at the bottom of the Bay.

The islands are man-made islands as well, right? Would that further complicate a bore?

That's what I was thinking.  How in Sam Hill do you launch the TBM?  Maybe the contractor has to build a huge cofferdam, pump out the water, dig down to the correct depth and then lower the TBM into position (or just assemble it in the cofferdam).   
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Thing 342 on February 14, 2016, 09:21:13 AM
Senate backs HRVA gas tax increase; House works on tolling plan instead - Daily Press
http://www.dailypress.com/news/politics/dp-nws-ga-tolls-20160213-story.html (http://www.dailypress.com/news/politics/dp-nws-ga-tolls-20160213-story.html)

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A key House leader, along with Gov. Terry McAuliffe's administration, has been working for weeks on legislation that would lay down rules for the future tolling that could help fund new water crossings and other highway work in Hampton Roads. The bill sets new limits on state tolling powers, in many cases requiring General Assembly approval before tolls could be charged. Now the Senate has backed an increase in the area's regional gas tax instead, with state Sen. Frank Wagner saying he wants to build a mound of cash while gas is cheap and drivers won't feel the pain of a tax increase. Wagner's tax is tiered, so if gas rises over $3 a gallon, motorists would pay less per gallon than they do under gas tax rules legislators approved in 2013 as part of a landmark transportation funding deal. Wagner's proposal passed the state Senate Friday 23-11, but looks to be dead on arrival in the House. House Appropriations Chairman S. Chris Jones, who is carrying a pair of major toll regulation bills, called Wagner's bill "a nonstarter" Friday afternoon.

That puts leaders in the two chambers at odds with each other. Wagner, R-Virginia Beach, chairs the Senate Commerce and Labor Committee, and Senate Majority Leader Thomas K. "Tommy" Norment Jr., R-James City, voted for Wagner's tax plan Friday. The Senate Transportation Committee laid aside legislation that roughly mirrored Jones' plan on tolls, shelving it for the year. "One would assume that whatever comes over from the House would meet the same fate," Wagner said. Locally, state Sen. Mamie Locke, D-Hampton, voted for Wagner's plan Friday. State Sen. John Miller, D-Newport News, voted against. Miller said he doesn't favor the tax plan or new tolls, and that he's willing to adopt a slower approach to construction than some Peninsula leaders. "Two years ago we told people the transportation plan was going to fix transportation," Miller said. "It's very difficult to go back to people and say, 'We want more money.' ... You've got to be realistic."

Hampton Roads transportation planners have identified more projects than they or the state have money to fund in the coming years. Gas prices are part of the problem, because when legislators approved the regional gas tax in 2013, setting it at 2.1 percent, they didn't put a floor on the price. When gas prices dove unexpectedly, then stayed low, tax collections dipped well below predicted levels. Northern Virginia, which has its own regional gas tax, has the same issue. Wagner included a new floor for Northern Virginia in his bill, something that had been proposed for Hampton Roads. That's been shelved in favor of the tiered system.

Wagner's Senate Bill 742 would replace the current percentage tax with a 14-cents-per-gallon tax when the wholesale price of gasoline is $2.50 a gallon or less. From $2.51 to $3 a gallon, the tax would drop to 8 cents. Above that, it would drop to 5 cents a gallon. "It's a tax increase now, but it's a tax cut (if gas tops $3)," Wagner said. Wagner said his plan will save not just on tolls, but on interest charges, since the state and the regional Hampton Roads Transportation Accountability Commission won't have to borrow as much money to fund projects.

Jones said the region's cash flow situation is better than Wagner indicates. His House Bill 1069 would generally forbid tolls without General Assembly approval on existing highways, bridges and tunnels, but it would allow them on new construction and on existing HOV lanes. Jones has said his bill also will require reasonable free alternatives to tolled routes. Both he and Transportation Secretary Aubrey Layne have said tolling is likely to be fairly common in Hampton Roads in coming years, though, partly due to the cost of water crossings.

Wagner said that, under his bill, "we can take tolls out of the equation" for the region's planned projects, except for Patriot's Crossing.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on February 19, 2016, 10:16:08 PM
The Virginian-Pilot: New bridge crossings for Hampton Roads pushed far into future in new plan (http://pilotonline.com/news/local/transportation/under-revised-funding-plan-new-water-crossings-for-hampton-roads/article_b9aa59e3-2dc1-53d1-ae88-5aa8a6d481ec.html)

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The group in charge of creating a transportation funding plan for the next six years has almost finished its work, but under current assumptions, there’s not enough to pay for all the region’s priority projects by 2040.

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Most notably, only one part of a water crossing could be completed by 2028; the rest is set for 2061 or 2066, according to new projections from the Hampton Roads Transportation Planning Organization, the sister group in charge of planning.

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Just exactly what those water crossings are – the Patriots Crossing with Craney Island Connector and expanded Monitor-Merrimac and Hampton Roads bridge-tunnels, or a combination – is still being identified in a two-year environmental study.

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So planners have put a placeholder dollar amount, $4 billion, for one of those projects to be built by 2028.

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The Hampton Roads Transportation Accountability Commission, created by 2013 legislation to oversee newly created regional tax revenue for transportation, first started meeting in July 2014.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on March 09, 2016, 12:43:17 PM
The Virginian-Pilot: Beach looks for new plan after Southeastern Parkway found to be too costly (http://pilotonline.com/news/government/local/odu-analysis-southeastern-parkway-too-costly-for-little-improvement/article_896fd3fa-73bd-5ffa-aecf-f6887e873ede.html)

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When it comes to building the Southeastern Parkway, another highway link from Chesapeake to Virginia Beach, the cost outweighs the benefits, according to analysis by Old Dominion University’s Center for Innovative Transportation Solutions.

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Now Virginia Beach officials need to figure out what’s next.

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Michael Robinson, the center’s director, presented the findings, determined with micro-level data analysis, at a council briefing Tuesday.

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The model predicts that not many would use the corridor if it were tolled at the necessary rate. It also would have a negligible impact on reducing hurricane evacuation times.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on May 21, 2016, 09:13:06 PM
The Virginian-Pilot: Want to use the carpool lanes on I-64 but driving by yourself? You could soon pay for that. (http://pilotonline.com/news/local/transportation/want-to-use-the-carpool-lanes-on-i--but/article_959cb885-c120-5918-a0a5-97397b8e5379.html)

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The reversible HOV lanes on Interstate 64, usually reserved for carpoolers, may soon be open to anyone.

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Well, anyone who is willing to pay.

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VDOT has almost finished studying the conversion of High Occupancy Vehicle lanes into High Occupancy Toll lanes by 2019.

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If approved, they would be the first HOT lanes in Hampton Roads.

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The lanes would still be free for vehicles carrying two or more people, but solo drivers could pay a toll to use them during peak hours.

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The study, set to be finished in June and voted on in July, analyzed 8.4 miles of two-lane reversible HOV lanes on Interstate 64 from I-564 to I-264 and 6.5 miles of dual-direction HOV diamond lanes from I-264 to Battlefield Boulevard.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Jmiles32 on May 21, 2016, 10:10:05 PM
Haven't traveled on that stretch of I-64 in a while but I guess it must get pretty congested during beach season. I don't mind this HOT lane plan so long that it is VDOT collecting the tolls on the lanes, not some greedy private company(Transburban). The money collected from these lanes could go toward some despertly needed transportation projects in the region(I-64 widening). I also predict that in 15 years, all of today's HOV lanes will eventully become HOT lanes. HOT lanes just seem to be the best way to solve traffic nowadays.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on May 21, 2016, 11:46:55 PM
Apparently the new parallel Thimble Shoal Tunnel of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel (CBBT) will be a bored tunnel after all. 

The CBBTD has gotten proposals from three contractor teams, and all of them are proposing a bored tunnel.  Details on the CBBT's Web site here (http://myemail.constantcontact.com/PTST-Project-Connect---Final-Technical-Proposals-and-Price-Proposals-Received-for-PTST.html?soid=1117799148242&aid=juaQXuhhxhA).

Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Alps on May 22, 2016, 12:54:07 AM
Haven't traveled on that stretch of I-64 in a while but I guess it must get pretty congested during beach season. I don't mind this HOT lane plan so long that it is VDOT collecting the tolls on the lanes, not some greedy private company(Transburban). The money collected from these lanes could go toward some despertly needed transportation projects in the region(I-64 widening). I also predict that in 15 years, all of today's HOV lanes will eventully become HOT lanes. HOT lanes just seem to be the best way to solve traffic nowadays.
I wonder how long it will take to pay off the toll infrastructure including the gantries, dividers, monitoring, revenue collection, billing, and associated personnel?
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on May 22, 2016, 08:41:00 AM
Quote from: Jmiles32
Haven't traveled on that stretch of I-64 in a while but I guess it must get pretty congested during beach season.

From extensive personal experience (stationed in Norfolk twice), beach traffic is not a significant contributor along this stretch of 64 (from 564 to 264).  It's the weekday rush that is by far the biggest culprit.  On a related note, it is often more difficult to leave the Navy base at 3:30pm than it is at 5pm because everyone is trying to get out to "beat the HOV" (HOV restrictions go into effect at 4pm).  I'll be curious to see how HO/T conversion affects the flow leaving base in the afternoon.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on July 19, 2016, 06:16:21 PM
Virginian Pilot/PilotOnline.com: Bids come in hundreds of millions lower on scaled-back Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel project (http://pilotonline.com/news/local/transportation/bids-come-in-hundreds-of-millions-lower-on-scaled-back/article_65965ec3-0cfa-57de-a85a-fd96961dc4b3.html)

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After bids for building a new parallel tunnel on the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel came in hundreds of millions of dollars higher than expected, bridge officials revised the project to save on cost.

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On Friday, officials opened revised bids from three design-build contractors.

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The bids were still higher, but much closer to the original $724.4 million estimate:

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Dragados USA and Schiavone Construction Company: $755,987,318 (previous bid: $1,092,000,000);

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Archer Western-Vinci Construction Tunnelbuilders: $785,883,000 (previous bid: $1,071,683,000);

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Bouygues TP/Traylor/Manson: $848,452,987 (previous bid: $1,016,046,800).

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“We’re very pleased with today’s results,” CBBT Executive Director Jeff Holland said.

Previous article (from April 2016): Proposals for building second tunnel on Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel top $1 billion (http://pilotonline.com/news/local/transportation/proposals-for-building-second-tunnel-on-chesapeake-bay-bridge-tunnel/article_5dcac008-c257-5704-a674-ba62b3272ee2.html)

Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: LM117 on July 28, 2016, 09:41:35 AM
A contract has been awarded to Dragados USA for the construction of a second Thimble Shoals tunnel on the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel. Work is slated to begin in October 2017 and is expected to take 5 years to complete. As of now, construction of a second tunnel at the Chesapeake Channel won't begin until at least 2040 or later.

http://pilotonline.com/news/local/transportation/dragados-awarded-million-contact-for-new-tube-of-chesapeake-bay/article_93a52221-f545-5733-815e-056ac43cd1a5.html (http://pilotonline.com/news/local/transportation/dragados-awarded-million-contact-for-new-tube-of-chesapeake-bay/article_93a52221-f545-5733-815e-056ac43cd1a5.html)
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on July 28, 2016, 12:48:27 PM
As of now, construction of a second tunnel at the Chesapeake Channel won't begin until at least 2040 or later.

I have no problem with  the CBBTD not wanting to have projects involving the twinning of both  tunnels going on at the  same  time. 

But I suspect they are being conservative about the twinning of the Chesapeake Tunnel, and it might get built well before 2040.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on July 28, 2016, 01:18:01 PM
As the project to twin the U.S. 13 Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel's Thimble Shoal Tunnel gets started, the end is near for the restaurant and fishing pier on the southernmost transition island.

Virginian Pilot: Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel restaurant to permanently close, pier to close for years (http://pilotonline.com/news/local/transportation/chesapeake-bay-bridge-tunnel-restaurant-to-permanently-close-pier-to/article_f48bb0f8-c546-501d-8d4e-f41fa298aabe.html)

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The unique pit stop that is Island 1 on the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel will dramatically change next year when construction of a new tube permanently closes the causeway's long-standing restaurant.

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The entire island will close to drivers for nearly five years as a new parallel tunnel on the Thimble Shoals channel is added, starting Oct. 1, 2017. That means no access to the Sea Gull Fishing Pier, which will also be closed during the tunnel's construction.

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For many visitors approaching from the north, the pull-off – complete with bird-watching, fishing, restrooms and food – was the first taste of Tidewater. Until a few years ago, travelers enjoyed the free drink coupons handed out at the toll booths. The gift shop once sold sparklers, smoke bombs and other fireworks.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: EricJV95 on July 29, 2016, 09:45:54 PM
Anytime I drive between Norfolk and Suffolk, Here's how I would do it. Some of you may want to use this. So, PAY ATTENTION !!! From the Downtown Norfolk area; Follow I-264 WEST across the Berkley Bridge on the RIGHT 2 Lanes and follow I-464 SOUTH for 5 MILES to EXIT 1B for I-64 (Suffolk-Richmond) and follow I-64 to EXITS 299A-B for I-264, I-664 Suffolk-Newport News-Norfolk. And from Suffolk; I-64 to Chesapeake-Va. Beach and take EXIT 291A to I-464 NORTH to I-264 Downtown Norfolk-Portsmouth. It's a pain; But Elizabeth River Tunnels are the blame for SCREWING drivers !!! As well as VDOT, too.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Thing 342 on July 29, 2016, 11:11:19 PM
Anytime I drive between Norfolk and Suffolk, Here's how I would do it. Some of you may want to use this. So, PAY ATTENTION !!! From the Downtown Norfolk area; Follow I-264 WEST across the Berkley Bridge on the RIGHT 2 Lanes and follow I-464 SOUTH for 5 MILES to EXIT 1B for I-64 (Suffolk-Richmond) and follow I-64 to EXITS 299A-B for I-264, I-664 Suffolk-Newport News-Norfolk. And from Suffolk; I-64 to Chesapeake-Va. Beach and take EXIT 291A to I-464 NORTH to I-264 Downtown Norfolk-Portsmouth. It's a pain; But Elizabeth River Tunnels are the blame for SCREWING drivers !!! As well as VDOT, too.
Here's something that will blow your mind: https://goo.gl/maps/uybCg6A8BYx (https://goo.gl/maps/uybCg6A8BYx)
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on July 30, 2016, 05:46:48 AM
Anytime I drive between Norfolk and Suffolk, Here's how I would do it. Some of you may want to use this. So, PAY ATTENTION !!! From the Downtown Norfolk area; Follow I-264 WEST across the Berkley Bridge on the RIGHT 2 Lanes and follow I-464 SOUTH for 5 MILES to EXIT 1B for I-64 (Suffolk-Richmond) and follow I-64 to EXITS 299A-B for I-264, I-664 Suffolk-Newport News-Norfolk. And from Suffolk; I-64 to Chesapeake-Va. Beach and take EXIT 291A to I-464 NORTH to I-264 Downtown Norfolk-Portsmouth. It's a pain; But Elizabeth River Tunnels are the blame for SCREWING drivers !!! As well as VDOT, too.
Here's something that will blow your mind: https://goo.gl/maps/uybCg6A8BYx (https://goo.gl/maps/uybCg6A8BYx)

I hope he realizes that during rush hour he would have to sit in heavy congestion at the I-64 High Rise Bridge going that route.  I do not know if I-264 usually gets congested in Portsmouth west of the Downtown Tunnel though.  (never heard anything about that on here)
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: LM117 on July 30, 2016, 06:55:46 AM
Anytime I drive between Norfolk and Suffolk, Here's how I would do it. Some of you may want to use this. So, PAY ATTENTION !!! From the Downtown Norfolk area; Follow I-264 WEST across the Berkley Bridge on the RIGHT 2 Lanes and follow I-464 SOUTH for 5 MILES to EXIT 1B for I-64 (Suffolk-Richmond) and follow I-64 to EXITS 299A-B for I-264, I-664 Suffolk-Newport News-Norfolk. And from Suffolk; I-64 to Chesapeake-Va. Beach and take EXIT 291A to I-464 NORTH to I-264 Downtown Norfolk-Portsmouth. It's a pain; But Elizabeth River Tunnels are the blame for SCREWING drivers !!! As well as VDOT, too.
Here's something that will blow your mind: https://goo.gl/maps/uybCg6A8BYx (https://goo.gl/maps/uybCg6A8BYx)

I hope he realizes that during rush hour he would have to sit in heavy congestion at the I-64 High Rise Bridge going that route.  I do not know if I-264 usually gets congested in Portsmouth west of the Downtown Tunnel though.  (never heard anything about that on here)

It's not that big a difference in mileage since his route is only 26 miles compared to 20 miles taking I-264, though I agree that I-64 in Chesapeake is a parking lot during rush hour due to that huge bottleneck. I doubt I-264 would be as congested since I'm sure there are plenty of others using alternate routes to avoid the tolls.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Thing 342 on July 30, 2016, 09:01:43 AM
264 WB west of the tunnel can sometimes get congested during rush hour, but 64 is far, far worse (with average speeds closer to 30mph without an accident), and 464 will occasionally get stacked up near the fairly congested I-64 / VA-168 interchange. However, if you're going during rush hour, it may just be faster to take the Gilmerton Bridge (US-13/460) and use Military Hwy all the way to 58.

Source: I drive this section of 64 on my way to my office in Great Bridge every day.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on July 30, 2016, 09:55:54 AM
264 WB west of the tunnel can sometimes get congested during rush hour, but 64 is far, far worse (with average speeds closer to 30mph without an accident), and 464 will occasionally get stacked up near the fairly congested I-64 / VA-168 interchange. However, if you're going during rush hour, it may just be faster to take the Gilmerton Bridge (US-13/460) and use Military Hwy all the way to 58.

Source: I drive this section of 64 on my way to my office in Great Bridge every day.

I can agree with that.  One time I went to Chesapeake and left during rush hour so I did that except I got onto I-64 EB (going WB) at Exit 297.  I do remember hearing that the Gilmerton Bridge has a decent amount of bridge openings though.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Takumi on July 30, 2016, 01:21:27 PM
I usually take the Gilmerton when I'm out that way. It's a minor pain during rush hour, but nothing close to I-64.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on August 05, 2016, 05:54:38 PM
The SEIS for the Hampton Roads Crossing Study (http://pilotonline.com/news/local/transportation/public-can-comment-on-water-crossing-choices-before-project-chosen/article_483d9b18-0580-569c-aea6-26ef4d743da9.html) is out.  The article is from The Virginian Pilot's website, but VDOT has its own website (http://www.hamptonroadscrossingstudy.org/) for this as well.

Public comments can be made until September 19th (45 days).  There are four alternatives with A only widening I-64 to 6 lanes and D practically building everything in A-C (minus the transit only lanes in C).

B seems to be A with a connection to Craney Island and VA 164 (with widening of VA 164 to 6 lanes from that connection to I-664).

C seems to be similar to the Third Crossing plans from before with the connection from VA 164 to Craney Island.  (note A is not part of C, this plan includes transit only lanes)

Personally, I have always preferred A with 8 lanes on the HRBT. (meaning four tubes)
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on August 05, 2016, 06:25:11 PM
It seems to me that 4 lanes each way (8 lanes total) makes the most sense.  Ideally  all lanes managed, or 4 lanes managed and 4 lanes "free."

Yet the only HRBT alternative proposes to widen the HRBT to 6 lanes.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Takumi on August 07, 2016, 11:49:12 AM
Just do D and put us all out of our misery.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: LM117 on August 07, 2016, 01:13:57 PM
I'd rather Hampton Roads get the D, but A would be my second choice.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on August 07, 2016, 02:56:44 PM
It seems to me that 4 lanes each way (8 lanes total) makes the most sense.  Ideally  all lanes managed, or 4 lanes managed and 4 lanes "free."

Yet the only HRBT alternative proposes to widen the HRBT to 6 lanes.

I think my issue with the Third Crossing idea has always been that it seemed to be some fancy way to solve congestion (via expanding the MMMBT instead) at the HRBT that ultimately would not help that much.  I could see alternative B alleviating some traffic along the VA 337 corridor, but I have always felt that HRBT improvements make the most sense. 
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: plain on August 24, 2016, 01:31:13 PM
Yes it would make the most since to expand the HRBT.... but keep in mind the sheer expense. This tunnel is both the longest and deepest in the entire Hampton Roads area
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on August 26, 2016, 01:45:42 PM
Yes it would make the most since to expand the HRBT.... but keep in mind the sheer expense. This tunnel is both the longest and deepest in the entire Hampton Roads area

All of the alternatives (minus C) involve expanding the HRBT to 6 lanes.  Alt. A (HRBT widening only) has an estimate of $3.3 billion while Alt. C and Alt. D are estimated at about $12 billion.  (in current 2016 dollars)   Anything done would be expensive is basically the point here.

Also the second lane of the new WB Midtown Tunnel (http://wavy.com/2016/08/25/second-lane-of-midtown-tunnel-west-opens-friday/) has opened, the EB Tunnel remains one lane as rehab work continues on it.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on August 31, 2016, 05:34:23 PM
Update:  The city of Norfolk recommends Alternative D (http://southsidedaily.com/2016/08/31/norfolk-recommends-i-64-solution-hosting-public-meeting-tonight/).
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on September 01, 2016, 08:21:33 AM
Yes it would make the most since to expand the HRBT.... but keep in mind the sheer expense. This tunnel is both the longest and deepest in the entire Hampton Roads area

But on the other hand, the HRBT (and its approaches, mostly I-64) might just be the most-congested (in terms of hours of congested conditions, both  weekdays and weekends) part of the Hampton  Roads highway network.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: LM117 on September 01, 2016, 10:13:47 AM
Yes it would make the most since to expand the HRBT.... but keep in mind the sheer expense. This tunnel is both the longest and deepest in the entire Hampton Roads area

But on the other hand, the HRBT (and its approaches, mostly I-64) might just be the most-congested (in terms of hours of congested conditions, both  weekdays and weekends) part of the Hampton  Roads highway network.

After having the displeasure of crossing the HRBT, I agree. Though off-topic, the I-64/I-264 interchange is also a total clusterfuck.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: amroad17 on September 02, 2016, 04:24:14 AM
I remember when it was enjoyable to drive across the HRBT (in 1982).  From what I hear from some acquaintences who live around there, traffic has now become heavier and a giant cluster all through the area than what it was in 1994 before I moved to Northern Kentucky.  I never had an issue with the High Rise Bridge on I-64 in Chesapeake, unless it had to open.  The largest issue then was the Va. Beach-Norfolk Expressway, the HRBT (not as bad as it is now), and the now 30-year roadwork project(s) on I-64 on the Peninsula (yes, this stuff has been going on since the mid-1980's).  Oh, and Battlefield Blvd. was no fun to drive when it came to the weekends in summer.  Too bad the improvement needed to be a tolled highway.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Rothman on September 02, 2016, 08:21:10 AM
For some reason, my first trip through the HRBT in 2005 became the first of more than a few (been a couple of years since I've been to Hampton Roads now).  Horrible congestion every time I had to go through it.  What's more horrifying is the feeling of hopelessness when you think about how to solve that problem -- there's no obvious, feasible solution.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on September 02, 2016, 08:47:26 AM
For some reason, my first trip through the HRBT in 2005 became the first of more than a few (been a couple of years since I've been to Hampton Roads now).  Horrible congestion every time I had to go through it.  What's more horrifying is the feeling of hopelessness when you think about how to solve that problem -- there's no obvious, feasible solution.

I actually only went through the HRBT once back in 2009 on a cold Saturday morning in March (my family always uses US 460 when headed to Hampton Roads).  I am proud to say that I have a 100% success rate when it comes to lack of congestion.   :-D
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on September 02, 2016, 09:06:38 AM
I remember when it was enjoyable to drive across the HRBT (in 1982).  From what I hear from some acquaintences who live around there, traffic has now become heavier and a giant cluster all through the area than what it was in 1994 before I moved to Northern Kentucky.  I never had an issue with the High Rise Bridge on I-64 in Chesapeake, unless it had to open.  The largest issue then was the Va. Beach-Norfolk Expressway, the HRBT (not as bad as it is now), and the now 30-year roadwork project(s) on I-64 on the Peninsula (yes, this stuff has been going on since the mid-1980's).  Oh, and Battlefield Blvd. was no fun to drive when it came to the weekends in summer.  Too bad the improvement needed to be a tolled highway.

First time I crossed the HRBT was sometime in the 1980's as well.  No congestion at all. Traffic was moving at 55 MPH  or better.

I did not like the relatively  sharp curves that are fairly unique to that crossing, as they do not exist at the CBBT tunnel portals, nor on I-664.

EDIT: Or, for that matter, at the two large tunnel crossings in Baltimore, Maryland (though  the I-95 FMT does curve most of the way, but the curves are pretty gentle).
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on September 15, 2016, 11:45:08 PM
(from Daily Press):  Apparently, the chosen HRBT alternative could affect when the I-64 Fort Eustis Interchange Project is done (http://www.dailypress.com/news/hampton/dp-nws-third-crossing-funding-20160915-story.html).  (possibly could be done between 2032 and 2072, with A making it the most likely to be done earliest with D meaning that it would not be done before 2040)
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Rothman on September 16, 2016, 08:49:08 AM
(from Daily Press):  Apparently, the chosen HRBT alternative could affect when the I-64 Fort Eustis Interchange Project is done (http://www.dailypress.com/news/hampton/dp-nws-third-crossing-funding-20160915-story.html).  (possibly could be done between 2032 and 2072, with A making it the most likely to be done earliest with D meaning that it would not be done before 2040)

Here in NY, NYSDOT formally hands out regional funding for less than ten years -- current regional funding essentially stops at the end of FFY 21.  Even then, NYSDOT doesn't really put much faith in projects beyond the current fiscal year and the next.  The idea that Virginia (and other states I see pop up on the forum from time-to-time) is actually putting out estimated dates more than 50 years in the future is simply stupefying.

(personal opinion emphasized)
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on September 20, 2016, 05:37:14 PM
(from Daily Press):  Apparently, the chosen HRBT alternative could affect when the I-64 Fort Eustis Interchange Project is done (http://www.dailypress.com/news/hampton/dp-nws-third-crossing-funding-20160915-story.html).  (possibly could be done between 2032 and 2072, with A making it the most likely to be done earliest with D meaning that it would not be done before 2040)

VDOT recommends Alternative B (http://www.dailypress.com/news/traffic/dp-vdot-staff-make-recommendation-for-water-crossing-20160920-story.html).

Honestly, this would be my preferred option out of the four since it seems that the HRBT having 8 lanes (4 tubes) will not be considered.  Also I do wonder how much the connector to VA 164 via Craney Island would relieve Midtown Tunnel traffic.


Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on September 20, 2016, 10:35:38 PM
Virginian Pilot/PilotOnline.com: Transportation committees dissect funding, sequencing of water crossing projects (http://pilotonline.com/news/local/transportation/transportation-committees-dissect-funding-sequencing-of-water-crossing-projects/article_babf3974-0280-5f94-9b2e-dba4d48ff394.html)

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While the public shares its opinions on the best water-crossing projects for the region, financial wonks are working behind the scenes to identify the most effective way to pay for it.

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“Over the next few months, we will be making the most important regional transportation decision of this generation,” Suffolk Mayor Linda Johnson and Virginia Beach Mayor Will Sessoms wrote in a letter to committee members. “This decision will be critical to the transportation mobility in our region as well as our regional economy, port and military asset.”

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The main goal of the Hampton Roads Water Crossing study is to alleviate congestion on the traffic-plagued Interstate 64 corridor and the Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel.

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The Virginia Department of Transportation is studying four alternatives, ranging from $3.3 billion to $12.5 billion. All of those figures are in 2016 dollars but have a 2.5 percent inflation rate and a 40 percent contingency built in.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: amroad17 on September 22, 2016, 05:10:36 AM
Could there be an Alternative E--none of the above/do nothing?  I mean Alternative D is all of the above.  :D

Seriously though, I believe the best solution would be to make the HRBT eight lanes--if it could be feasibly done.  Building the two new bridge trestles and tunnels would not be the problem; it would be connecting them to where I-64 is on land.  Most people would not really want to drive south on I-664, go east on the third crossing, and take I-564 to I-64 east.  Perceptively, it would be considered out of the way.

Now, as for me driving from Northern Kentucky to Va. Beach, I would take I-664 to Bowers Hill and go on I-64 to I-264 to get to the Oceanfront.  I know how hellish the HRBT can be.  I would go that way just to avoid it--much like I would avoid Chicago by taking I-74 out of Cincinnati to Bloomington-Normal IL and taking I-39 north to Rockford if I needed to go to Madison, WI or Minneapolis/St. Paul.

As far as Alternative A, how would the six lanes work?  I know that the proposed new tunnel will not have two-way traffic.  Would it be set up so four lanes go one way and two go the other and be switched later that day?  Or will it be set up so that the left-most lane in each direction uses the new tunnel (if it is built between the current ones) with a Jersey barrier separating the lanes?  Or if a new tunnel is built either east or west (HRBT actually is north/south) of the current ones, will one of the original tubes be used in the situation described above?

Since I moved out of the Hampton Roads area in 1994, traffic has become a lot more congested.  When I left, I-664 was open for only 2.5 years and was not very busy then.  The last time I was in the area was 2006 and I was a bit surprised at the amount of traffic on it then.  I bet it is very busy now--especially with only two lanes each way.  That area of Chesapeake and Suffolk has built up considerably since I left.  I guess VDOT did not plan on that happening--since I-664 was built with the two lanes in each direction.  I also remember when I could take Towne Point Road from VA 135 to US 17 in Belleville--riding through farms and fields.  That got obliterated when I-664 and VA 164 were built. 

With hindsight being 20/20 (cliche), what should have been done back in the mid-1970's was that I-64 should have been built with 3 lanes in each direction throughout Norfolk--from the HRBT to I-264.  However, this probably would have made westbound traffic worse, merging from three lanes to two when approaching the HRBT as the new bridge-tunnel opened in 1976.  I-664 should also have been built with 3 lanes each way through Suffolk and Chesapeake to anticipate future growth in that area.  As I said before, when I-664 and VA 164 opened in 1992 and 1993, there was nothing around that area.  However, if any DOT builds a freeway near a metropolitan area, there is going to be growth in that area.

As far as the other Alternatives, Alternative B would not be overly bad.  VA 164 would have to widened from the connection both ways for this to work properly.  Doing this would keep VDOT from having to build a massive interchange over the James River to hook up with the MMMBT.  I just cannot wrap my mind about how that interchange would look like from the Tidewater Community College campus shoreline.

I'm glad I do not live in Hampton Roads anymore.  I would be wondering why some of my money is gone--no, I would know!  It has become a modern version of the 1970's and early 1980's--tolls at tunnels, without having to stop at tollbooths.  Also, instead of paying 25 or 50 cents, it now costs $2 or $3.

Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on September 22, 2016, 05:46:34 AM
As far as Alternative A, how would the six lanes work?  I know that the proposed new tunnel will not have two-way traffic.  Would it be set up so four lanes go one way and two go the other and be switched later that day?  Or will it be set up so that the left-most lane in each direction uses the new tunnel (if it is built between the current ones) with a Jersey barrier separating the lanes?  Or if a new tunnel is built either east or west (HRBT actually is north/south) of the current ones, will one of the original tubes be used in the situation described above?


See page 16 from Chapter 2 of the DEIS. (http://hamptonroadscrossingstudy.org/documents/201608/chapter_2-_alternatives.pdf)  (this is based on Alt. A)

Basically, the existing tunnels would become two tubes for I-64 WB (the existing WB HRBT would become one lane while the EB HRBT would be two WB lanes).  A new third tube with 3 lanes would be built for I-64 EB.   
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: amroad17 on September 22, 2016, 07:05:40 AM
That is rather interesting.  I was basing my reasoning on the typical two-lane tunnel--not even giving thought to a three-lane tunnel. 

Got to like the thought of travelling on a 24-foot wide lane instead of a 12-foot wide one.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on September 22, 2016, 11:36:54 AM
Fitch Ratings: Fitch Affirms Chesapeake Bay Bridge & Tunnel Dist, VA's Sub GRBs at 'A-'; Outlook Stable (https://www.fitchratings.com/site/pr/1011838)

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The rating affirmation and Stable Outlook are due to continued solid financial metrics and steadily growing traffic, coupled with a senior lien that remains open. The facility has a mature traffic base with an exposure to cyclical commercial vehicle traffic. Construction of the parallel Thimble Shoal Tunnel will require significant additional debt; as part of the financing it is expected that the existing debt outstanding will be fully cash defeased and, therefore, should not impact the financial profile of the existing bonds.

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Mature Traffic Base with Commercial Exposure: The District's monopolistic bridge and tunnel facility is the only link between the metropolitan Hampton Roads region and Virginia's eastern shore. Volume has been relatively stable over recent years, with a 0.76% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) over the last decade and a more recent five-year 1.9% CAGR. However, the facility is exposed to cyclically volatile seasonal leisure traffic and is moderately dependent on heavy truck volume, which over the past five audited years generated 22% of toll revenues.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Revive 755 on September 22, 2016, 06:04:04 PM
Got to like the thought of travelling on a 24-foot wide lane instead of a 12-foot wide one.

I don't - I see too many drivers trying to use that tunnel as if it had two lanes.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: amroad17 on September 24, 2016, 03:45:48 AM
VDOT should give serious thought about re-striping the proposed westbound lane to 12- or 14-feet wide.  Give drivers an extra foot and they will take an extra 11.  :nod:
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on September 29, 2016, 03:12:02 PM
The Gloucester-Mathews Gazette-Journal: Supervisor works to reduce, eliminate tolls (http://www.gazettejournal.net/index.php/news/news_article/supervisor_works_to_reduce_eliminate_tolls)

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One member of the Gloucester County Board of Supervisors is behind an initiative to push for the elimination or restructuring of the tolls on the Coleman Bridge, making the trip home across the bridge less costly to local commuters.

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York district supervisor Phillip Bazzani, who represents Gloucester as a legislative committee member and voting member on the Hampton Roads Transportation Planning Organization, is encouraging state legislators to ask VDOT to refinance the current debt still owed on the bridge, which is close to $40 million, restructure toll rates to make them less burdensome on local residents or other solutions to the toll dilemma.

Quote
“According to VDOT data, about 70 percent of the (Coleman Bridge) debt is paid by Gloucester residents,” Bazzani said. “This represents an unfair tax to our citizens.” He said the average Gloucester resident spends approximately $700-$800 a year on tolls, while a family of four spends upwards of $1,500 a year on tolls.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Thing 342 on September 29, 2016, 03:44:23 PM
The Gloucester-Mathews Gazette-Journal: Supervisor works to reduce, eliminate tolls (http://www.gazettejournal.net/index.php/news/news_article/supervisor_works_to_reduce_eliminate_tolls)

Quote
One member of the Gloucester County Board of Supervisors is behind an initiative to push for the elimination or restructuring of the tolls on the Coleman Bridge, making the trip home across the bridge less costly to local commuters.

Quote
York district supervisor Phillip Bazzani, who represents Gloucester as a legislative committee member and voting member on the Hampton Roads Transportation Planning Organization, is encouraging state legislators to ask VDOT to refinance the current debt still owed on the bridge, which is close to $40 million, restructure toll rates to make them less burdensome on local residents or other solutions to the toll dilemma.

Quote
“According to VDOT data, about 70 percent of the (Coleman Bridge) debt is paid by Gloucester residents,” Bazzani said. “This represents an unfair tax to our citizens.” He said the average Gloucester resident spends approximately $700-$800 a year on tolls, while a family of four spends upwards of $1,500 a year on tolls.
$700-$800 per year per person doesn't sound right, especially at the bridge's current rate of 2$ / 85¢  EZPass, northbound-only.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Rothman on September 30, 2016, 10:00:04 AM
The Gloucester-Mathews Gazette-Journal: Supervisor works to reduce, eliminate tolls (http://www.gazettejournal.net/index.php/news/news_article/supervisor_works_to_reduce_eliminate_tolls)

Quote
One member of the Gloucester County Board of Supervisors is behind an initiative to push for the elimination or restructuring of the tolls on the Coleman Bridge, making the trip home across the bridge less costly to local commuters.

Quote
York district supervisor Phillip Bazzani, who represents Gloucester as a legislative committee member and voting member on the Hampton Roads Transportation Planning Organization, is encouraging state legislators to ask VDOT to refinance the current debt still owed on the bridge, which is close to $40 million, restructure toll rates to make them less burdensome on local residents or other solutions to the toll dilemma.

Quote
“According to VDOT data, about 70 percent of the (Coleman Bridge) debt is paid by Gloucester residents,” Bazzani said. “This represents an unfair tax to our citizens.” He said the average Gloucester resident spends approximately $700-$800 a year on tolls, while a family of four spends upwards of $1,500 a year on tolls.
$700-$800 per year per person doesn't sound right, especially at the bridge's current rate of 2$ / 85¢  EZPass, northbound-only.

I'd imagine you could get up there if you refused to get E-ZPass in a year, commuting into Hampton Roads.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Mapmikey on September 30, 2016, 10:16:05 AM
$700 a year is 350 round trips a year. To say the average resident does this suggests that some people do even more than that which is dubious because Gloucester County has plenty of businesses. Additionally I'm sure plenty of folks have EZ-pass which would result in an average of $700 requiring well over 350 round trips. So IMO the $ figure is made up
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: jeffandnicole on September 30, 2016, 10:18:56 AM
The average commuter, at 85 cents/day, working 250 days a year, would spend about $212.50 in tolls.

The average tinfoil hat commuter, at $2/day, working 250 days a year, would spend about $500 in tolls.

I don't know if I ever heard of average toll costs in the terms of "a family of four".  It's not like more people in the car equals more tolls.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on September 30, 2016, 10:22:22 AM
The average commuter, at 85 cents/day, working 250 days a year, would spend about $212.50 in tolls.

The average tinfoil hat commuter, at $2/day, working 250 days a year, would spend about $500 in tolls.

That seems more reasonable.

I don't know if I ever heard of average toll costs in the terms of "a family of four".  It's not like more people in the car equals more tolls.

There were once toll roads and toll crossings in Virginia that charged per-passenger.  I think the HRBT may have done that when it was a toll crossing.  Maybe the CBBT too, in its early  days.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Rothman on September 30, 2016, 10:29:13 AM

The average tinfoil hat commuter, at $2/day, working 250 days a year, would spend about $500 in tolls.


...and I suppose the tinfoil hats would stay off the roads on weekends.

Not saying the cost estimate isn't a stretch; just figuring out where it come from.  Probably just had someone multiply 6*52*2, ignoring the E-ZPass discount.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: jeffandnicole on September 30, 2016, 10:30:37 AM

The average tinfoil hat commuter, at $2/day, working 250 days a year, would spend about $500 in tolls.


...and I suppose the tinfoil hats would stay off the roads on weekends.

Not saying the cost estimate isn't a stretch; just figuring out where it come from.  Probably just had someone multiply 6*52*2, ignoring the E-ZPass discount.

Well, you figure there's some vacation days when the person wouldn't be working, but some weekends when they have to cross the bridge for a special event.  It all averages out.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on September 30, 2016, 10:46:31 AM
To say the average resident does this suggests that some people do even more than that which is dubious because Gloucester County has plenty of businesses.

I crossed the Coleman Bridge (U.S. 17) after not having used it for quite a few years earlier this year, and yes, there has been a lot of growth in commecial businesses in Gloucester County over the past 10 or 15 years.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on October 01, 2016, 11:33:52 AM
Quote from: From the article...
“According to VDOT data, about 70 percent of the (Coleman Bridge) debt is paid by Gloucester residents,” Bazzani said. “This represents an unfair tax to our citizens.”

Most of those residents also chose to live across a major river, instead of living closer in to the metropolitan region.  I have zero sympathy for those who live farther out, knowing the tolls are there, and then complain about the tolls.

Nevermind that the tolls are only charged one-way...
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Mapmikey on October 01, 2016, 12:27:52 PM
Quote from: From the article...
“According to VDOT data, about 70 percent of the (Coleman Bridge) debt is paid by Gloucester residents,” Bazzani said. “This represents an unfair tax to our citizens.”



Also...(am I missing something?) shouldn't the majority of the users pay the majority of the tolls?

I can accept arguments along the lines of the bridge prior to that had no tolls for a number of years and now there are tolls.  But people do choose to live up there and commute southward.  And it is likely that if they moved south of the river the cost of their housing alone would outweigh the tolls they pay now.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: plain on October 02, 2016, 10:10:53 AM
Quote from: From the article...
“According to VDOT data, about 70 percent of the (Coleman Bridge) debt is paid by Gloucester residents,” Bazzani said. “This represents an unfair tax to our citizens.”



Also...(am I missing something?) shouldn't the majority of the users pay the majority of the tolls?

I can accept arguments along the lines of the bridge prior to that had no tolls for a number of years and now there are tolls.  But people do choose to live up there and commute southward.  And it is likely that if they moved south of the river the cost of their housing alone would outweigh the tolls they pay now.

Definitely correct. I have seen homes in Gloucester County listed at $100k-$150k and homes in York County list at $250k for the same sq. footage. To say Gloucester residents shouldn't complain too much about an 85 cent toll one way is an understatement lmao. Whoever that Board Of Supervisors member is they're obviously just trying to set themselves up for a future run in office somewhere. Politics as usual smdh
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on October 02, 2016, 10:52:51 AM
Quote from: From the article...
“According to VDOT data, about 70 percent of the (Coleman Bridge) debt is paid by Gloucester residents,” Bazzani said. “This represents an unfair tax to our citizens.”

Most of those residents also chose to live across a major river, instead of living closer in to the metropolitan region.  I have zero sympathy for those who live farther out, knowing the tolls are there, and then complain about the tolls.

Nevermind that the tolls are only charged one-way...

All correct.  The swing span(s) had to be replaced to allow river traffic and vehicle traffic to cross where U.S. 17 crosses the York River.  VDOT got the replacement done using an innovative approach, which minimized the amount of time that the crossing had to be closed, but since they did not have the cash laying around to fund the project, they  had to borrow to get the project completed.

These people (and their elected officials) have no right to complain.  If they do not like the bridge tolls, there's a simple solution.  Move

My sympathy meter is on zero.

Quote from: From the article...
“According to VDOT data, about 70 percent of the (Coleman Bridge) debt is paid by Gloucester residents,” Bazzani said. “This represents an unfair tax to our citizens.”



Also...(am I missing something?) shouldn't the majority of the users pay the majority of the tolls?

I can accept arguments along the lines of the bridge prior to that had no tolls for a number of years and now there are tolls.  But people do choose to live up there and commute southward.  And it is likely that if they moved south of the river the cost of their housing alone would outweigh the tolls they pay now.


They  made their choices, and it was pretty clear that U.S. 17 at the York River (Coleman Bridge) was going to be (re)tolled several years before the swing span replacement project was done.

Quote from: From the article...
“According to VDOT data, about 70 percent of the (Coleman Bridge) debt is paid by Gloucester residents,” Bazzani said. “This represents an unfair tax to our citizens.”



Also...(am I missing something?) shouldn't the majority of the users pay the majority of the tolls?

I can accept arguments along the lines of the bridge prior to that had no tolls for a number of years and now there are tolls.  But people do choose to live up there and commute southward.  And it is likely that if they moved south of the river the cost of their housing alone would outweigh the tolls they pay now.

Definitely correct. I have seen homes in Gloucester County listed at $100k-$150k and homes in York County list at $250k for the same sq. footage. To say Gloucester residents shouldn't complain too much about an 85 cent toll one way is an understatement lmao. Whoever that Board Of Supervisors member is they're obviously just trying to set themselves up for a future run in office somewhere. Politics as usual smdh

To pay a modest toll and a relatively short added travel distance for that much less in property cost seems like a pretty good deal to me.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on October 03, 2016, 01:28:51 PM
Virginian Pilot/PilotOnline.com [Editorial]: Third crossing will require planning, vision (http://pilotonline.com/opinion/editorial/virginian-pilot-editorial-third-crossing-will-require-planning-vision/article_4f0903bf-1705-5e4c-b393-38907130e6e2.html)

Quote
THERE ARE NOW two ways to cross the harbor: The Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel and the Monitor-Merrimac Memorial Bridge-Tunnel, with the upriver James River Bridge adding a third way north and south.

Quote
It’s not enough. Nowhere near.

Quote
It’s not enough for commerce or tourism. It’s not enough for commuting. It’s not enough for a major American metropolitan region that struggles with connectivity and unity within and without. Or one that must compete, for jobs and people and federal dollars, with regions that are better connected and better united.

Quote
For a generation, doing something about that lack of transportation capacity in Hampton Roads was a frustrating fool’s errand. Richmond’s anti-tax ethos was the primary problem, ensuring that there was never enough transportation money to do what needed doing in the state’s burgeoning metropolitan areas, namely here and Northern Virginia.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on October 07, 2016, 08:37:30 AM
The Navy has concerns with all alternatives except Alternative A. (http://www.dailypress.com/news/traffic/dp-nws-port-navy-water-crossings-20161006-story.html)  This seems to be due to accessibility at Craney Island.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: LM117 on October 07, 2016, 10:50:46 AM
The Navy has concerns with all alternatives except Alternative A. (http://www.dailypress.com/news/traffic/dp-nws-port-navy-water-crossings-20161006-story.html)  This seems to be due to accessibility at Craney Island.

I guess Alternative D was just too good to be true.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on October 07, 2016, 12:45:14 PM
The Navy has concerns with all alternatives except Alternative A. (http://www.dailypress.com/news/traffic/dp-nws-port-navy-water-crossings-20161006-story.html)  This seems to be due to accessibility at Craney Island.

If it was my decision (it's not ;-) ), I would do Alternative A, but with eight lanes instead of six (two new tubes - or maybe one new w-i-d-e tube to carry four lanes of traffic). 

Seems that this is something that the U.S. Navy and their friends at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers could go along with. 

Does anyone know why Alternative A was not proposed as an eight lane crossing?
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on October 07, 2016, 01:22:12 PM
The Navy has concerns with all alternatives except Alternative A. (http://www.dailypress.com/news/traffic/dp-nws-port-navy-water-crossings-20161006-story.html)  This seems to be due to accessibility at Craney Island.

If it was my decision (it's not ;-) ), I would do Alternative A, but with eight lanes instead of six (two new tubes - or maybe one new w-i-d-e tube to carry four lanes of traffic). 

Seems that this is something that the U.S. Navy and their friends at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers could go along with. 

Does anyone know why Alternative A was not proposed as an eight lane crossing?

Looking at Chapter 2 of the DEIS (http://hamptonroadscrossingstudy.org/documents/201608/chapter_2-_alternatives.pdf), the best I could find was this.  (referring to the Build-8 and other alternatives studied)

Quote
During the public review of the HRBT DEIS, there was a clear lack of public or political support for the level
of impacts associated with any of the build alternatives. Specifically, potential impacts to the historic
district at Hampton University, Hampton National Cemetery, and the high number of displacements were
key issues identified by the public, elected officials, and University and Veterans Affairs officials. Given
this public opposition, a Preferred Alternative was not identified and the study did not advance. On August
20, 2015, FHWA rescinded its Notice of Intent to prepare the HRBT DEIS, citing public and agency
comments and concerns over the magnitude of potential environmental impacts to a variety of resources,
such as impacts to historic resources as well as communities and neighborhoods.

I am not sure how eight lanes over six lanes means less significant impacts in this scenario.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on October 07, 2016, 02:37:53 PM
Those who live along 64 in Norfolk have long opposed significant (I.e. 8+ lane) widening because of the property impacts anything above 6 lanes would bring to their neighborhoods (including high-dollar Willoughby Spit).  A wider cross-section would also incur significant wetland and coastline impacts.  Both of these are likely reasons why the alternatives that include HRBT widening call for 6 lanes instead of 8+.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on October 07, 2016, 02:42:06 PM
Those who live along 64 in Norfolk have long opposed significant (I.e. 8+ lane) widening because of the property impacts anything above 6 lanes would bring to their neighborhoods (including high-dollar Willoughby Spit).  A wider cross-section would also incur significant wetland and coastline impacts.  Both of these are likely reasons why the alternatives that include HRBT widening call for 6 lanes instead of 8+.

No opposition on the Hampton side of the crossing?
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on October 08, 2016, 08:25:11 AM
Don't know.  Lived in Norfolk so was more aware of what was happening on the Southside...
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: amroad17 on October 09, 2016, 04:38:34 AM
Those who live along 64 in Norfolk have long opposed significant (I.e. 8+ lane) widening because of the property impacts anything above 6 lanes would bring to their neighborhoods (including high-dollar Willoughby Spit).  A wider cross-section would also incur significant wetland and coastline impacts.  Both of these are likely reasons why the alternatives that include HRBT widening call for 6 lanes instead of 8+.

No opposition on the Hampton side of the crossing?
It always seemed like, "Okay VaDOT, tell us what you are planning on doing and we will just go with it."
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on October 09, 2016, 08:19:09 AM
Not necessarily.  Hampton was very much on-record as opposing the Third Crossing/Patriot's Crossing connector between I-564 and the MMBT.  They supported HRBT widening instead.  How much HRBT widening, I'm not sure.  I know at the time of the Third/Patriot's Crossing studies that the HRBT alternative was for 8 lanes vice 6.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: plain on October 11, 2016, 10:04:19 PM
Trust me... EVERYONE in Hampton Roads wants the HRBT expanded to at least double it's current capacity.. realistically it's going to be extremely difficult to do that without a price tag of well over $1b. And that price tag is going to be extremely difficult without putting tolls back on it. So if making it a 6 lane crossing instead of an 8 lane is feasible then in this case something is definitely better than nothing. Plus it will cost even more to expand the approaches... while the existing 6 lane approaches exist within a mile of the HRBT on the Hampton side, it is still 6 miles away on the Norfolk side. That fact too must be taken into account.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on October 12, 2016, 07:11:49 PM
I doubt this is very newsworthy since the US Army Corps of Engineers and the Navy will not approve any Third Crossing Alternatives such as C and D.

Daily Press:  Newport News mayor submits 'hybrid model' for water-crossing project (http://www.dailypress.com/news/traffic/dp-nws-price-water-crossing-hybrid-20161012-story.html) 

It will not be considered as stated.  See the proposed hybrids as stated in the article below:

Quote
Newport News mayor's proposed hybrid: Alternative D, but without the new roadway along the east side of Craney Island to Route 164 in Portsmouth and without widening a portion of Route 164. Includes transit-only lanes.

Norfolk city manager's proposed hybrid: Same as Newport News mayor's model, but without widening the MMMBT, and without widening I-64 and I-664 on the Peninsula side. Norfolk's first choice is Alternative D, however.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on October 15, 2016, 08:38:42 PM
I doubt this is very newsworthy since the US Army Corps of Engineers and the Navy will not approve any Third Crossing Alternatives such as C and D.

Daily Press:  Newport News mayor submits 'hybrid model' for water-crossing project (http://www.dailypress.com/news/traffic/dp-nws-price-water-crossing-hybrid-20161012-story.html) 

Link was broken.  Fixed above.

It will not be considered as stated.  See the proposed hybrids as stated in the article below:

Quote
Newport News mayor's proposed hybrid: Alternative D, but without the new roadway along the east side of Craney Island to Route 164 in Portsmouth and without widening a portion of Route 164. Includes transit-only lanes.

Norfolk city manager's proposed hybrid: Same as Newport News mayor's model, but without widening the MMMBT, and without widening I-64 and I-664 on the Peninsula side. Norfolk's first choice is Alternative D, however.

Is there demand for transit-only lanes? I am skeptical. 

IMO, much better to price the crossings so they run at free-flow (perhaps with free or discounted passage for HOV-3), and if there is demand for transit, run the transit in the free-flowing mixed-traffic lanes.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on October 17, 2016, 07:24:57 AM
Quote
Is there demand for transit-only lanes? I am skeptical.

Presently, not really.  But in the future, that would be a different story.  Given the huge expense involved with adding regular lanes to the bridge tunnels, they will at some point have to consider a dedicated transit lane to manage higher demand.  Better to add such a lane when they're considering a tunnel expansion now, since it very well may be impossible to add anything else down the road.

Regarding pricing the crossings...that would be severely opposed, if the reaction to re-instituting tolls at the Downtown and the Midtown Tunnels is any indication.  I do believe it would be legal under Federal law....Virginia appears to have a slot under the Value Pricing Pilot Program.  But they'd have some serious public-relation and acceptance hurdles to jump before doing so at the HRBT or Monitor-Merrimac...
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on October 17, 2016, 08:49:51 AM
Quote
Is there demand for transit-only lanes? I am skeptical.

Presently, not really.  But in the future, that would be a different story.  Given the huge expense involved with adding regular lanes to the bridge tunnels, they will at some point have to consider a dedicated transit lane to manage higher demand.  Better to add such a lane when they're considering a tunnel expansion now, since it very well may be impossible to add anything else down the road.

Add them as priced lanes.  I do not think we should be  adding transit-only or HOV-only  links to the highway network any longer, with exceptions for places like New York City and maybe some other very large urban areas (Wilshire Boulevard in Los Angeles being an example).

I am not convinced that the demand for transit will ever arrive in an area like Hampton Roads, even though there are a lot of federal employees there that can be encouraged to take the a bus more than other workers.

Regarding pricing the crossings...that would be severely opposed, if the reaction to re-instituting tolls at the Downtown and the Midtown Tunnels is any indication.  I do believe it would be legal under Federal law....Virginia appears to have a slot under the Value Pricing Pilot Program.  But they'd have some serious public-relation and acceptance hurdles to jump before doing so at the HRBT or Monitor-Merrimac...

Pricing would absolutely need approval by the federal government.  The slot that Virginia has was for tolling I-95, but that's not going to happen. 

Adding new capacity across Hampton Roads is going to be extremely expensive, and it is pretty  clear that the powers-that-be in Richmond are not interested in funding projects like this out of state motor fuel taxes. So they have a choice of no added capacity, or tolled added capacity.

Nothing is free.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on October 17, 2016, 10:01:12 AM
Quote
I am not convinced that the demand for transit will ever arrive in an area like Hampton Roads, even though there are a lot of federal employees there that can be encouraged to take the a bus more than other workers.

However, without giving those buses a dedicated lane, they'll be stuck in the same congestion as everyone else.

Quote
The slot that Virginia has was for tolling I-95, but that's not going to happen.

That's a different pilot tolling program than the one I was referring to.  Look up the Value Pricing Pilot Program.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on October 17, 2016, 10:48:01 AM
Quote
I am not convinced that the demand for transit will ever arrive in an area like Hampton Roads, even though there are a lot of federal employees there that can be encouraged to take the a bus more than other workers.

However, without giving those buses a dedicated lane, they'll be stuck in the same congestion as everyone else.

I vigorously disagree.  Price the lane(s) correctly so they provide at least level-of-service D (less than about 1,800 or 1,900 vehicles per lane per hour), and allow any bus or HOV-3 to use it at no charge, and collect a toll from everyone else.  It may  be a bad idea to allow large trucks in such  lanes, especially  tunnels with steep climbing  lanes, but that's for the engineers and elected officials to work out.

Quote
The slot that Virginia has was for tolling I-95, but that's not going to happen.

That's a different pilot tolling program than the one I was referring to.  Look up the Value Pricing Pilot Program.

I take your word on that.  Bottom line is if it is not tolled, then it's not happening, even now with more state motor fuel tax revenue flowing into VDOT.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on October 18, 2016, 05:43:19 PM
Virginian Pilot/PilotOnline.com:  Midtown Tunnel backups are a thing of the past and commuters are very happy (http://pilotonline.com/news/local/transportation/getting-around/midtown-tunnel-backups-are-a-thing-of-the-past-and/article_17bbdef2-bfd5-5f48-970b-db24c144cf01.html)

Quote
The Lord God Almighty is getting a lot of credit for traffic improvements at the Midtown Tunnel.

Quote
At least that’s what Twitter users are saying, after Elizabeth River Crossings opened up two eastbound lanes of traffic for the first time earlier this month.

Quote
For months, cars have snaked all the way back to Churchland during morning rush hour. Then ERC announced it would open both lanes of the tunnel during morning rush hour.

Quote
If there aren’t any crashes, breakdowns or bad weather, the daily 1½-to-2-mile backups have been eliminated.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: amroad17 on October 19, 2016, 04:05:08 PM
"All the way to Churchland"?  That is close to three to four miles away--unless the other side of the West Norfolk Bridge is considered Churchland.  That's West Norfolk up to Coast Guard Blvd.  After that is Churchland.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on October 19, 2016, 07:40:44 PM
Back when I was still stationed in the area, I saw backups as far back as Cedar Ln, so Churchland (basically the next exit west) is not that far of a stretch...
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on October 19, 2016, 08:19:18 PM
Daily Press: The I-64 reversible HOV lanes in Norfolk are to officially become HOT Lanes next year. (http://www.dailypress.com/news/traffic/dp-nws-hot-lanes-20161019-story.html)
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on October 20, 2016, 06:17:10 PM
The Hampton Roads Transportation Planning Organization (HRTPO) recommends Alternative A (http://www.13newsnow.com/traffic/transportation-board-recommends-expanding-hampton-roads-bridge-tunnel/339248452).
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on October 20, 2016, 08:17:39 PM
The Hampton Roads Transportation Planning Organization (HRTPO) recommends Alternative A (http://www.13newsnow.com/traffic/transportation-board-recommends-expanding-hampton-roads-bridge-tunnel/339248452).

I have not been able to figure out what two more lanes will do.

Is it a new reversible tube (like the HOV (soon HOV/Toll) lanes on I-64 and I-564)?

Or does it add a lane each way with some sort of barrier to prevent head-on crashes?

I probably have not dug through the stuff that's online deep enough.  Enlightenment appreciated.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on October 20, 2016, 09:10:18 PM
As far as Alternative A, how would the six lanes work?  I know that the proposed new tunnel will not have two-way traffic.  Would it be set up so four lanes go one way and two go the other and be switched later that day?  Or will it be set up so that the left-most lane in each direction uses the new tunnel (if it is built between the current ones) with a Jersey barrier separating the lanes?  Or if a new tunnel is built either east or west (HRBT actually is north/south) of the current ones, will one of the original tubes be used in the situation described above?


See page 16 from Chapter 2 of the DEIS. (http://hamptonroadscrossingstudy.org/documents/201608/chapter_2-_alternatives.pdf)  (this is based on Alt. A)

Basically, the existing tunnels would become two tubes for I-64 WB (the existing WB HRBT would become one lane while the EB HRBT would be two WB lanes).  A new third tube with 3 lanes would be built for I-64 EB.   

CPZ See above,  I quoted myself from earlier in the thread.  No managed/tolled reversible lanes are in the plans.

EDIT: Daily Press states that HOT Lanes could be a part of this. (http://www.dailypress.com/news/traffic/dp-regional-transportation-leaders-unexpectedly-endorse-water-crossing-model-20161020-story.htmll)
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on October 20, 2016, 09:55:31 PM
CPZ See above,  I quoted myself from earlier in the thread.  No managed/tolled reversible lanes are in the plans.

EDIT: Daily Press states that HOT Lanes could be a part of this. (http://www.dailypress.com/news/traffic/dp-regional-transportation-leaders-unexpectedly-endorse-water-crossing-model-20161020-story.htmll)

Thanks.  I had not grasped (or maybe forgotten!) that the new proposed tube would be a three-laner.

Still think it is a mistake to not price all lanes on the HRBT, but that's just me. 
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: amroad17 on October 22, 2016, 12:45:47 AM
Back when I was still stationed in the area, I saw backups as far back as Cedar Ln, so Churchland (basically the next exit west) is not that far of a stretch...
Wow!!  That far?  Even before the Pinners Point Connector was built, traffic never backed up that far.  Traffic rarely backed up in Port Norfolk.  Of course, 22 years ago before I moved to Northern Kentucky, there wasn't the traffic there is now.  Must be fun to drive there now!  :-/
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on October 22, 2016, 07:52:43 AM
Traffic didn't back up that far before Pinners Point was built because people knew it was a PITA to connect through Port Norfolk to the Midtown Tunnel.  Building Pinners Point changed all that.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on October 23, 2016, 09:10:16 PM
ABC13 (Hampton Roads Local Station):  Va. Governor McAuliffe to announce toll relief plan (http://www.13newsnow.com/news/local/va-governor-mcauliffe-to-announce-toll-relief-plan/340323139)

I thought that eliminating the tolls off the MLK Freeway was toll relief, but I think the bigger concern is that making Elizabeth River Crossings pay $500,000 a year for 10 years could put them in an Act 44/89 scenario.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on October 23, 2016, 09:38:08 PM
ABC13 (Hampton Roads Local Station):  Va. Governor McAuliffe to announce toll relief plan (http://www.13newsnow.com/news/local/va-governor-mcauliffe-to-announce-toll-relief-plan/340323139)

I thought that eliminating the tolls off the MLK Freeway was toll relief, but I think the bigger concern is that making Elizabeth River Crossings pay $500,000 a year for 10 years could put them in an Act 44/89 scenario.

Will highway users in Northern Virginia ask "where's mine?" 

We know how much money is bleeding out of the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission and into PennDOT as a result of Act 44 and Act 89 and we also know how much revenue PTC collects annually.

We know that Virginia's governor wants $500,000 a year from the ERC group.  I do not think we know is how much revenue is ERC collecting.  Half a million dollars a year might not be that much for them.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on October 23, 2016, 10:36:57 PM
We know that Virginia's governor wants $500,000 a year from the ERC group.  I do not think we know is how much revenue is ERC collecting.  Half a million dollars a year might not be that much for them.

That seems to be the case as I thought about it and made a couple rough calculations (I got $53.8 million assuming 70,000 ADT on the Downtown Tunnel (based on 2015 traffic counts (http://virginiadot.org/info/resources/Traffic_2015/AADT_PrimaryInterstate_2015.pdf)) and 40,000 ADT on the Midtown Tunnel (assuming an increase from the 32,000 in 2015 in the next couple years) using a $1.50 average toll). 

Will highway users in Northern Virginia ask "where's mine?" 

The best they may get is a VA 7 freeway from US 15 to VA 28 that may keep some traffic off VA 267/Dulles Greenway.  (This is the best source I could find on it. (http://www.loudountimes.com/news/article/nvta_considering_fiscal_2017_funding_for_interchange_at_route_7_and_battlef))
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on October 24, 2016, 07:29:37 AM
Quote
(I got $53.8 million assuming 70,000 ADT on the Downtown Tunnel (based on 2015 traffic counts)

Too low of a volume.  Downtown Tunnel is in the 90K vicinity.  The lower value for 2015 is likely due to the ongoing tunnel rehabilitation that year.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on October 24, 2016, 01:47:56 PM
We know that Virginia's governor wants $500,000 a year from the ERC group.  I do not think we know is how much revenue is ERC collecting.  Half a million dollars a year might not be that much for them.

That seems to be the case as I thought about it and made a couple rough calculations (I got $53.8 million assuming 70,000 ADT on the Downtown Tunnel (based on 2015 traffic counts (http://virginiadot.org/info/resources/Traffic_2015/AADT_PrimaryInterstate_2015.pdf)) and 40,000 ADT on the Midtown Tunnel (assuming an increase from the 32,000 in 2015 in the next couple years) using a $1.50 average toll).
 

Even if that is a conservative estimate of revenue, I still think they  can afford a hit of $500,000 a year based on the above, though I wonder if the ERC bondholders can raise objections.

Quote
(I got $53.8 million assuming 70,000 ADT on the Downtown Tunnel (based on 2015 traffic counts)

Too low of a volume.  Downtown Tunnel is in the 90K vicinity.  The lower value for 2015 is likely due to the ongoing tunnel rehabilitation that year.

Concur, based on personal limited knowledge, and your extensive experience driving in this area.

Will highway users in Northern Virginia ask "where's mine?" 

The best they may get is a VA 7 freeway from US 15 to VA 28 that may keep some traffic off VA 267/Dulles Greenway.  (This is the best source I could find on it. (http://www.loudountimes.com/news/article/nvta_considering_fiscal_2017_funding_for_interchange_at_route_7_and_battlef))

I doubt it will happen.  I think there would be a lot of opposition along the Dranesville, Fairfax County part of the  corridor. 
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on October 24, 2016, 02:11:46 PM
Quote from: cpzilliacus
Quote from: 74/171FAN
The best they may get is a VA 7 freeway from US 15 to VA 28 that may keep some traffic off VA 267/Dulles Greenway.  (This is the best source I could find on it.)

I doubt it will happen.  I think there would be a lot of opposition along the Dranesville, Fairfax County part of the  corridor.

Doubtful.  First, that locale is well outside the corridor segment mentioned, as all of VA 7 between US 15 and VA 28 is within Loudoun County.  Second, enough of the Dranesville population wants to see VA 7 widened to 6 lanes between 286 and the DTR.  If there's opposition in Dranesville, it would be because they want VDOT to focus on their widening instead of focusing on a freeway upgrade.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on October 24, 2016, 03:28:14 PM
Quote from: cpzilliacus
Quote from: 74/171FAN
The best they may get is a VA 7 freeway from US 15 to VA 28 that may keep some traffic off VA 267/Dulles Greenway.  (This is the best source I could find on it.)

I doubt it will happen.  I think there would be a lot of opposition along the Dranesville, Fairfax County part of the  corridor.

Doubtful.  First, that locale is well outside the corridor segment mentioned, as all of VA 7 between US 15 and VA 28 is within Loudoun County.  Second, enough of the Dranesville population wants to see VA 7 widened to 6 lanes between 286 and the DTR.  If there's opposition in Dranesville, it would be because they want VDOT to focus on their widening instead of focusing on a freeway upgrade.

My understanding is that there are plenty of people along the  Fairfax County part of VA-7 that want nothing done to the highway at all.

Not widening.  Not a freeway.

Now that's not what the VDOT Six Year Program has in its database, which is Reconstruction w/ Added Capacity (http://syip.virginiadot.org/Pages/lineitemDetails.aspx?syp_scenario_id=226&line_item_id=1180054).   Jarrett Valley Drive is just west of the VA-267 interchange, which is being improved as part of a different project.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on October 24, 2016, 05:14:37 PM
Quote
(I got $53.8 million assuming 70,000 ADT on the Downtown Tunnel (based on 2015 traffic counts)

Too low of a volume.  Downtown Tunnel is in the 90K vicinity.  The lower value for 2015 is likely due to the ongoing tunnel rehabilitation that year.


I am certain you are right.  I need to revisit the Downtown Tunnel ASAP for my own purposes.  (It will probably get done when I get to drive the new Midtown Tunnel.)

Here is the actual toll relief plan (http://wric.com/2016/10/24/toll-relief-program-to-ease-burden-on-norfolk-portsmouth-residents/) for only Norfolk and Portsmouth residents.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on October 25, 2016, 06:36:00 PM
Unsure if tolls will be involved here, but there is a public hearing in Chesapeake on the widening of I-64 (http://pilotonline.com/news/local/transportation/traffic/vdot-to-hold-public-hearing-on-i--widening-project/article_897caf39-0f13-56d8-acf0-72c7cc3db28c.html) from I-664 in Bowers Hill to east of I-464 tomorrow night.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on October 26, 2016, 06:56:36 AM
Per the project website (http://www.virginiadot.org/projects/hamptonroads/i-64_southside__high_rise_bridge_phased_construction.asp), the additional capacity "will operate as managed lanes."  The website does not specify (yet) whether that management option will be HOV, HO/T, or all-lanes-tolled.  VDOT does have the authority to toll all lanes on a new High Rise Bridge.  They might also have the authority to institute congestion pricing on all I-64 lanes elsewhere, but I'm not 100% on that.

Also, while budgetary constraints are likely why they're proposing a 6 lane section instead of the CTB-approved 8 lanes, it would be a pity if they didn't build the new High Rise Bridge with 4 lanes plus full shoulders.  It's highly unlikely that any such bridge would receive a widening project down the road.  Furthermore, it would enable them to run 3 lanes each direction on that new span when (if?) they ever replace the existing span.  Their current plan is to build a new bridge for Norfolk-bound (i.e. I-64 "West") traffic and leave the existing bridge for Bowers Hill-bound traffic.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: LM117 on October 26, 2016, 09:58:01 AM
Unsure if tolls will be involved here, but there is a public hearing in Chesapeake on the widening of I-64 (http://pilotonline.com/news/local/transportation/traffic/vdot-to-hold-public-hearing-on-i--widening-project/article_897caf39-0f13-56d8-acf0-72c7cc3db28c.html) from I-664 in Bowers Hill to east of I-464 tomorrow night.

It can't come soon enough! Last time I drove through there it was a parking lot. I'd prefer 8 lanes, but even 6 lanes would be an improvement, so I'm happy.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on November 16, 2016, 07:16:16 PM
Tolls are rising again on the Midtown and Downtown Tunnels next year. (http://www.13newsnow.com/traffic/toll-rates-at-midtown-downtown-tunnels-increasing-in-2017/352739142)
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: plain on November 17, 2016, 11:33:31 AM
Tolls are rising again on the Midtown and Downtown Tunnels next year. (http://www.13newsnow.com/traffic/toll-rates-at-midtown-downtown-tunnels-increasing-in-2017/352739142)
right on schedule smh get ready for a load of complaints all over again  :-D
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on November 17, 2016, 02:47:58 PM
Annual toll increases for the first few years were announced when tolling began.  This isn't news except for those drivers/politicians with extremely short memories...
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: plain on November 18, 2016, 01:56:07 AM
Annual toll increases for the first few years were announced when tolling began.  This isn't news except for those drivers/politicians with extremely short memories...
Exactly
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on November 18, 2016, 12:57:59 PM
Annual toll increases for the first few years were announced when tolling began.  This isn't news except for those drivers/politicians (wanting to take cheap shots at ERC and harumph about tolls in general) with extremely short memories...

FTFY.

It's similar to the anger that has been directed at the operators of the Dulles Greenway (VA-267) in Loudoun County by certain elected officials.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on November 29, 2016, 09:21:44 PM
(Quote posted in general VA thread)
  Just saw on the news that the MLK Expressway extension is set to open tomorrow (11/30/16)!! The report showed aerial coverage of it and a BGS was shown displaying "TOLL US 58" on the viaduct. I thought VA 164 would've went on this segment...

I found the  news release from Elizabeth River Tunnels (https://www.driveert.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/11292016_MLKExpresswayOpens_Final.pdf) on this.  The extension is still to be VA 164.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Mapmikey on November 30, 2016, 07:12:04 AM
(Quote posted in general VA thread)
  Just saw on the news that the MLK Expressway extension is set to open tomorrow (11/30/16)!! The report showed aerial coverage of it and a BGS was shown displaying "TOLL US 58" on the viaduct. I thought VA 164 would've went on this segment...

I found the  news release from Elizabeth River Tunnels (https://www.driveert.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/11292016_MLKExpresswayOpens_Final.pdf) on this.  The extension is still to be VA 164.

Does anyone know what the final status of VA 337 ALT in this area will be?

Fixed quote.  -Mark
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on November 30, 2016, 02:44:36 PM
I haven't heard.  But related to the opening, a WVEC reporter posted a video to Twitter this afternoon showing the extension signed as VA 164 from westbound I-264.

Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: plain on November 30, 2016, 03:04:54 PM
Oh ok cool.. it makes more since to have VA 164 there. I'm going to take that drive this weekend while I'm down that way to check things out
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on November 30, 2016, 06:38:39 PM



MLK Expressway Extension is officially open.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: mrsman on December 04, 2016, 08:06:46 AM
Oh ok cool.. it makes more since to have VA 164 there. I'm going to take that drive this weekend while I'm down that way to check things out

Correct.  The freeways in this area are all x64s.  Most are interstate, but VA 164 probably doesn't meet interstate standards for some reason. 

US 58 is basically a surface street routing in this entire area.  From Bowers Hills to the Ocean, US 58 closely relates to I-264.  There is no reason to place US 58 along the extension.

This new extension will make it much easier to get from the I-664 bridge-tunnel to Norfolk and Virginia Beach.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on December 04, 2016, 08:55:31 AM
^ Moreso that the new extension makes it easier to use the Midtown Tunnel to avoid the Downtown Tunnel and vice versa.  Since the Pinners Point Interchange was completed in 2004, it had already been fairly easy to get from 664/MMBT to Norfolk.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: plain on December 05, 2016, 10:15:34 AM

Correct.  The freeways in this area are all x64s.  Most are interstate, but VA 164 probably doesn't meet interstate standards for some reason.

Usually it would be a safe bet to assume that just based off of traditional practices... but trust me on this one: VA 164 is definitely built to interstate standards for it's entire length.

Also, I had a chance to see the extension up close and personal late last night. In true Virginia fashion (by this I mean confusing to the general public smdh), the extension is definitely signed as VA 164 in the BGS' on I-264 as froggie mentioned... however, once on the extension itself, the pull thru BGS at the High St exit only shows US 58 toll with no mention of VA 164, as I saw in the news report. I attempted to take pics but the rain ruined it for me. I will try again sometime this week
 
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Mapmikey on December 05, 2016, 10:51:34 AM
Oh ok cool.. it makes more since to have VA 164 there. I'm going to take that drive this weekend while I'm down that way to check things out

Virginia applied for interstate status for VA 164 in 1968 when Congress allotted additional mileage but was turned down.

Don't believe there is any reason VDOT couldn't reapply if they wanted to, unless there is something deficient about the Western Branch bridge...
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on December 05, 2016, 11:04:50 AM
The median barrier on the Western Branch bridge may be substandard now (too low/short).  Also, with the median rail line, the inside shoulders are now substandard.  These are not insurmountable with one exception:  the eastbound shoulder underneath the VA 135 bridge would require a waiver because of the bridge pier proximity.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: plain on December 05, 2016, 03:52:48 PM
The median barrier on the Western Branch bridge may be substandard now (too low/short).  Also, with the median rail line, the inside shoulders are now substandard.  These are not insurmountable with one exception:  the eastbound shoulder underneath the VA 135 bridge would require a waiver because of the bridge pier proximity.
Don't believe there is any reason VDOT couldn't reapply if they wanted to, unless there is something deficient about the Western Branch bridge...

The original 1978 span of the VA 164 Western Branch Bridge was rebuilt to interstate standards a few years after VDOT completed it's extension and interchange to US 58/MLK Fwy.
https://goo.gl/maps/RBHrYKqzhc72

As for the section where the railroad occupies the median, VDOT has plenty of room to add another foot to the left shoulder of each carriageway if needed for interstate designation, even though I believe the highway can receive it in its present form (I-795 in NC cleared with little problems). I can see why the VA 135 overpass would require a waiver in the eastbound lanes as you said though. I think that's another thing that VDOT didn't plan out well as I'm sure they were also trying to design the highway to be expanded to 6 lanes when warranted.. that bridge support is in the way of even a standard shoulder
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on December 06, 2016, 07:20:41 AM
Quote
The original 1978 span of the VA 164 Western Branch Bridge was rebuilt to interstate standards a few years after VDOT completed it's extension and interchange to US 58/MLK Fwy.

No it wasn't.  I was stationed in Norfolk at the time and up through 2014, and the original 1978 span that wasn't directly redone for the Pinners Point Interchange remains as-is.

Quote
As for the section where the railroad occupies the median, VDOT has plenty of room to add another foot to the left shoulder of each carriageway if needed for interstate designation, even though I believe the highway can receive it in its present form (I-795 in NC cleared with little problems).

In this case, because of the railroad, they would need to pave a full 10' shoulder for it to be Interstate standard.  And there definitely isn't 10' of room underneath VA 135...hence why a waiver would be required there.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: plain on December 06, 2016, 03:23:06 PM
Quote
The original 1978 span of the VA 164 Western Branch Bridge was rebuilt to interstate standards a few years after VDOT completed it's extension and interchange to US 58/MLK Fwy.

No it wasn't.  I was stationed in Norfolk at the time and up through 2014, and the original 1978 span that wasn't directly redone for the Pinners Point Interchange remains as-is.

Quote
As for the section where the railroad occupies the median, VDOT has plenty of room to add another foot to the left shoulder of each carriageway if needed for interstate designation, even though I believe the highway can receive it in its present form (I-795 in NC cleared with little problems).

In this case, because of the railroad, they would need to pave a full 10' shoulder for it to be Interstate standard.  And there definitely isn't 10' of room underneath VA 135...hence why a waiver would be required there.


Well they certainly fooled me as I just went through there the other night and it certainly didn't look the same as it did the last time I went through (2009 or 2010ish) I certainly don't remember the right shoulders on the original span being that wide either. Could've been a simple resurfacing or something fooling my eyes. I'm probably just mistaking or something lol sorry. In any event I don't see why the bridge wouldn't qualify for interstate designation as it sits today.. the Jersey barriers on both the median and the outer parts of the bridge are as standard as standard gets.
I already agreed with you about the VA 135 overpass situation.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on December 06, 2016, 03:42:54 PM
The West Norfolk Bridge has always had a wider right shoulder...that part's not the issue.  The issue is the median barrier...standards call for something taller these days.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on December 07, 2016, 06:57:02 PM
As far as Alternative A, how would the six lanes work?  I know that the proposed new tunnel will not have two-way traffic.  Would it be set up so four lanes go one way and two go the other and be switched later that day?  Or will it be set up so that the left-most lane in each direction uses the new tunnel (if it is built between the current ones) with a Jersey barrier separating the lanes?  Or if a new tunnel is built either east or west (HRBT actually is north/south) of the current ones, will one of the original tubes be used in the situation described above?


See page 16 from Chapter 2 of the DEIS. (http://hamptonroadscrossingstudy.org/documents/201608/chapter_2-_alternatives.pdf)  (this is based on Alt. A)

Basically, the existing tunnels would become two tubes for I-64 WB (the existing WB HRBT would become one lane while the EB HRBT would be two WB lanes).  A new third tube with 3 lanes would be built for I-64 EB.   

CPZ See above,  I quoted myself from earlier in the thread.  No managed/tolled reversible lanes are in the plans.

EDIT: Daily Press states that HOT Lanes could be a part of this. (http://www.dailypress.com/news/traffic/dp-regional-transportation-leaders-unexpectedly-endorse-water-crossing-model-20161020-story.htmll)

CTB chooses Alternative A. (http://pilotonline.com/news/local/transportation/commonwealth-transportation-board-makes-hrbt-expansion-a-top-transportation-project/article_f711d1c5-3a5a-574b-b081-2ef0f6aff05a.html)  Any decisions involving HOT lanes will be decided later.  Also VDOT promises to not affect the property of Hampton University.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Jmiles32 on December 07, 2016, 09:08:20 PM
Assuming that the new lanes are HOT lanes which the article says is likely, then I think it would make the most sense to extend the current reversible HOV lanes(future HOT lanes) from I-564, up I-64, across the new tube, an then possibly further up the peninsula in which the reversible lanes could split and become one HOT lane(using the existing HOV lane) in each direction similar to what I-395 does near the Pentagon going into DC. I guess a problem with this idea though would be limited space along I-64 in Hampton. 
Personally I would like to see the HRBT be expanded to 4 tubes, 2 in each direction similar to Fort Mckenny Tunnel in Baltimore(I-95) but I realize thats a long shot.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on April 03, 2017, 04:34:50 PM
Daily Press:  Potential contractors learn more about project to expand HRBT (http://www.dailypress.com/news/hampton/dp-nws-vdot-hrbt-expansion-0404-20170403-story.html)

Note that it looks like the new lanes will be HOT Lanes.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on April 12, 2017, 04:41:03 PM
Daily Press: The I-64 reversible HOV lanes in Norfolk are to officially become HOT Lanes next year. (http://www.dailypress.com/news/traffic/dp-nws-hot-lanes-20161019-story.html)

ABC13:Details emerge on VDOT's plans for I-64 HOT lane tolling (http://www.13newsnow.com/traffic/vdot-to-announce-hot-lane-tolling-on-i-64/430635507)

Quote
The conversion is scheduled for later this year along an eight-mile stretch of I-64 in Norfolk, from the Interstate 264/64 interchange to Interstate 564.

The HOT lanes will be in effect Monday through Friday from 5 am to 9 am, and then again from 2 to 6 pm. Vehicles with two or more passengers will be able to ride free.

If you're driving solo during peak hours, you can drive in the HOT lane, but you'll have to pay up. At a news conference Wednesday, VDOT Secretary Aubrey Lane said the cost would begin at 50 cents, and then increase based on traffic flow.

Officials say hybrid vehicles are exempt from having a minimum number of people inside in order to use HOV lanes. These vehicles can use the express lanes even if there is only a driver in the car.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on April 12, 2017, 07:12:42 PM
Years overdue.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Jmiles32 on April 14, 2017, 11:02:26 AM
Daily Press: The I-64 reversible HOV lanes in Norfolk are to officially become HOT Lanes next year. (http://www.dailypress.com/news/traffic/dp-nws-hot-lanes-20161019-story.html)

ABC13:Details emerge on VDOT's plans for I-64 HOT lane tolling (http://www.13newsnow.com/traffic/vdot-to-announce-hot-lane-tolling-on-i-64/430635507)

Quote
The conversion is scheduled for later this year along an eight-mile stretch of I-64 in Norfolk, from the Interstate 264/64 interchange to Interstate 564.

The HOT lanes will be in effect Monday through Friday from 5 am to 9 am, and then again from 2 to 6 pm. Vehicles with two or more passengers will be able to ride free.

If you're driving solo during peak hours, you can drive in the HOT lane, but you'll have to pay up. At a news conference Wednesday, VDOT Secretary Aubrey Lane said the cost would begin at 50 cents, and then increase based on traffic flow.

Officials say hybrid vehicles are exempt from having a minimum number of people inside in order to use HOV lanes. These vehicles can use the express lanes even if there is only a driver in the car.

So when the I-64 HOT lanes are not in effect outside of peak hours or during the weekend, will they go back to HOV lanes?
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on May 01, 2017, 11:16:49 AM
The Virginian-Pilot editorial: A relentless, unnecessary tolling quagmire (http://pilotonline.com/opinion/editorial/editorial-a-relentless-unnecessary-tolling-quagmire/article_bab1095e-0444-5e09-8654-12b2eb0d0a13.html)

Quote
RELIEF AT LONG last is coming to some motorists adversely affected by tolls at the Downtown and Midtown tunnels between Norfolk and Portsmouth.

Quote
But the wretched deal between the commonwealth and Elizabeth River Crossings continues to inflict pain on the communities of south Hampton Roads. It’s time for Virginia to consider a radical, expensive but permanent solution.

Quote
In 2012, the administration of Gov. Bob McDonnell helped to effectively cleave the region in two, isolating Portsmouth, Suffolk and western Chesapeake from Norfolk and Virginia Beach, and foisting decades of financial hardship on every community here.

Quote
The whole of Virginia, of course, benefits when the economic engine of Hampton Roads runs smoothly. This deal was like pouring sand in the gas tank.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: jeffandnicole on May 01, 2017, 12:14:40 PM
Quote
The whole of Virginia, of course, benefits when the economic engine of Hampton Roads runs smoothly. This deal was like pouring sand in the gas tank.

From what I read, the whole of Virginia is paying hundreds of millions of dollars to keep Hampton roads running smoothly.  What is Hampton Roads doing to keep Virginia running smoothly?
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on May 01, 2017, 02:53:53 PM
Quote
The whole of Virginia, of course, benefits when the economic engine of Hampton Roads runs smoothly. This deal was like pouring sand in the gas tank.

From what I read, the whole of Virginia is paying hundreds of millions of dollars to keep Hampton roads running smoothly.  What is Hampton Roads doing to keep Virginia running smoothly?

1.  The Commonwealth (IMO) does not give enough dollars to Hampton Roads and to Northern Virginia, the two areas that keep the rest of it running and supplied with tax dollars.

2.  Hampton Roads has the large military bases, and the some of the largest seaport facilities on the East Coast, for importing and exporting things.  It's also something of a tourist draw, including Virginia Beach and the area of Williamsburg and Jamestown.

On more direct note, I personally disagree with  Virginia's emphasis on private sector companies being allowed to take over and improve parts of the transportation infrastructure and then ruin the lives of some people with very high tolls (and more to the point, excessive penalties and  fees, which are often  IMO unconscionable).  Much better for Virginia to have its own statewide toll road and toll crossing agency which is accountable to its citizens.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on May 01, 2017, 07:41:33 PM
Quote
From what I read, the whole of Virginia is paying hundreds of millions of dollars to keep Hampton roads running smoothly.  What is Hampton Roads doing to keep Virginia running smoothly?

I'd like to know where you read this...especially considering that, as CP alluded to, Hampton Roads is the #2 economic engine for the entire state.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on June 15, 2017, 03:59:40 PM
FHWA chooses Alternative A (http://wavy.com/2017/06/15/fhwa-i-64-hrbt-expansion-plan/) in its Record of Decision.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on June 16, 2017, 06:27:04 AM
FHWA chooses Alternative A (http://wavy.com/2017/06/15/fhwa-i-64-hrbt-expansion-plan/) in its Record of Decision.

I personally disagree with retaining "free" crossings of Hampton Roads. That is expensive infrastructure to operate and maintain, and the users should be required to fund at least some of that with tolls.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on June 16, 2017, 08:25:18 AM
I agree that major water crossings are expensive to maintain.  But on the flip side, there is a very real fear that you will isolate the Southside of Hampton Roads if you reinstitute tolls at the HRBT, MMBT, and JRB.  We're already seeing indications that Portsmouth is starting to suffer with the reinstitution of tolls at the Midtown and Downtown tunnels.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: LM117 on June 16, 2017, 08:59:18 AM
FHWA chooses Alternative A (http://wavy.com/2017/06/15/fhwa-i-64-hrbt-expansion-plan/) in its Record of Decision.

I personally disagree with retaining "free" crossings of Hampton Roads. That is expensive infrastructure to operate and maintain, and the users should be required to fund at least some of that with tolls.

I strongly disagree with tolling all crossings. Portsmouth has already been hit hard and Hampton Roads' economy isn't exactly booming thanks to it's heavy reliance on the military. Tolling all crossings is a surefire way to keep the local economy stagnant, if not make it worse.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: roadman65 on June 16, 2017, 09:14:46 AM
FHWA chooses Alternative A (http://wavy.com/2017/06/15/fhwa-i-64-hrbt-expansion-plan/) in its Record of Decision.

I personally disagree with retaining "free" crossings of Hampton Roads. That is expensive infrastructure to operate and maintain, and the users should be required to fund at least some of that with tolls.

I strongly disagree with tolling all crossings. Portsmouth has already been hit hard and Hampton Roads' economy isn't exactly booming thanks to it's heavy reliance on the military. Tolling all crossings is a surefire way to keep the local economy stagnant, if not make it worse.

Might of reinstate the I-264 tolls as well.  Or Richmond area should reinstate the Richmond-Petersburg Turnpike.  You will open a can of worms when you do this

However, they could do it  on this principal that if people keep following their GPSes and ignore road signs as well as  their own ability to orientate themselves, as it would be all AET (Like the Midtown and Downtown currently have with EZPass) and many would not know that its a tolled facility.  They would take advantage of ignorance and probably know of this already, as who cares about us in the minds of people in power.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Rothman on June 16, 2017, 09:37:52 AM
FHWA chooses Alternative A (http://wavy.com/2017/06/15/fhwa-i-64-hrbt-expansion-plan/) in its Record of Decision.

I personally disagree with retaining "free" crossings of Hampton Roads. That is expensive infrastructure to operate and maintain, and the users should be required to fund at least some of that with tolls.
Pfft.  They already pay taxes.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: plain on June 16, 2017, 10:02:19 AM
FHWA chooses Alternative A (http://wavy.com/2017/06/15/fhwa-i-64-hrbt-expansion-plan/) in its Record of Decision.

I personally disagree with retaining "free" crossings of Hampton Roads. That is expensive infrastructure to operate and maintain, and the users should be required to fund at least some of that with tolls.
Pfft.  They already pay taxes.

I'm really not trying to sound like that type of guy but I'm just gonna say it: they don't pay enough taxes.

Anyone remember when the people in that area rejected the tax increase to pay for all this? The main reason for Hampton Roads' ills and almost non-existent population growth is because of the traffic. Every single expressway sees some sort of congestion except for the Chesapeake Expwy and the very recently freewayed Dominion Blvd. When visitors visit the area and catch all sorts of hell doing so, that's not leaving a good impression with them... more likely than not they're going to avoid actually moving there.

I know tolls are not popular at all with anybody but I feel that officials have very little choice. But at least only the new lanes (and tunnel) on the HRBT will be tolled.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on June 16, 2017, 01:56:47 PM
Might of reinstate the I-264 tolls as well.  Or Richmond area should reinstate the Richmond-Petersburg Turnpike.  You will open a can of worms when you do this

With the old cash tolling (especially on the RPT, especially before I-295 was complete) yes, that would be a mistake.

The congestion to pay the cash tolls on the Turnpike were terrible at  times and there are greater crash risks at the toll barriers too.

Not with all-electronic toll collection, however.

However, they could do it  on this principal that if people keep following their GPSes and ignore road signs as well as  their own ability to orientate themselves, as it would be all AET (Like the Midtown and Downtown currently have with EZPass) and many would not know that its a tolled facility.  They would take advantage of ignorance and probably know of this already, as who cares about us in the minds of people in power.

Most GPS software tells the driver that they are being routed onto a road or crossing that charges tolls (I took it  upon myself to have the geographic files for one small toll crossing between Maryland and West Virginia updated because I learned that many drivers were pulling up to the modest toll gate and getting angry when they were asked to pay the toll ($1.50 cash one way)).

I have been on the ERC crossings since they were (re)tolled, but have not had a chance to look closely  at the signage to see if I feel it is clear.

But the signs on cashless toll lanes and roads in Northern Virginia and the two in Maryland seem to me to be pretty clear (IMO it also helped that these were lanes that were new, and there was no  history of "free" operation).
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Mapmikey on June 17, 2017, 02:57:03 PM
Traffic counts in recent years:

2013:
Midtown Tunnel (US 58): 36,000
Downtown Tunnel (I-264): 86,000
Jordan Bridge (VA 337): 6,400

2014 (tolls reinstated at the tunnels):
Midtown Tunnel (US 58): 32,000
Downtown Tunnel (I-264): 65,000
Jordan Bridge (VA 337): 6,200

2015:
Midtown Tunnel (US 58): 32,000
Downtown Tunnel (I-264): 70,000
Jordan Bridge (VA 337): 6,300

2016:
Midtown Tunnel (US 58): 28,000
Downtown Tunnel (I-264): 76,000
Jordan Bridge (VA 337): 7,900

So it appears there were drops in traffic after the tolls went back in place, though I-264 appears to be recovering back towards its pre-toll levels.  It will be interesting to see if the Midtown Tunnel picks up in 2017 because traffic congestion should be lessened by the 2nd tube (perhaps the drop in traffic is partially explained by people not wanting to pay a toll to be stuck in slow congestion trying to use the facility).

As for the bigger picture, I would separate out the idea of toll roads staying toll indefinitely versus distinct facilities like the bridge-tunnels.  Once the tolls are removed from the toll roads, the state can then spread out the maintenance and upgrades over time on various segments and not have to do the whole road at once (e.g. The Richmond-Petersburg Tpk has been updated in much smaller segments than the entire roadway) which fits the VDOT budgeting amount and processes.  The problem with the bridge-tunnels is that other than the CBBT, it isn't very practical to rebuild in pieces - you have to do the whole thing all at once.  The price tags for this approach the entirety of the annual VDOT budget, so unless you want to literally do nothing else in Virginia one year, it seems that tolls or special taxes, etc. are required to ever get it done.

Keep in mind that the only reason (IMO) that MMBT and HRBT (EB lanes) weren't tolled to begin with is that they were funded under the 90/10 rule for interstates and Virginia was able to meet its 10% obligation without tolls or other stuff.  When Virginia has had to foot the entire bill (HRBT WB lanes, CBBT, Midtown and Downtown Tunnels) they instituted tolls.

For other smaller structures (e.g. US 17 York R bridge and VA 3 Rappahannock bridge) it seems like once the tolls have accumulated enough to pay off the original construction cost, tolls should be dropped but maybe not eliminated entirely, which can ease toll amounts when the replacement facilities come along someday.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Rothman on June 18, 2017, 11:06:49 AM



Keep in mind that the only reason (IMO) that MMBT and HRBT (EB lanes) weren't tolled to begin with is that they were funded under the 90/10 rule for interstates and Virginia was able to meet its 10% obligation without tolls or other stuff.  When Virginia has had to foot the entire bill (HRBT WB lanes, CBBT, Midtown and Downtown Tunnels) they instituted tolls.

Given that states have to first instance the entire cost for federal-aid projects I don't see how the fact that VA could cover the match the design and construction cost would lead to them not putting tolls on the facilities.

I would put a much firmer bet on political pressure.  I am also unsure of where FHWA regs stood at the time, especially when the MMBT was built.  Because I-664 was new, it may have had to have been toll-free at that time due to the regulations regarding the use of federal funds at the time.

Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on June 19, 2017, 12:02:16 AM
Keep in mind that the only reason (IMO) that MMBT and HRBT (EB lanes) weren't tolled to begin with is that they were funded under the 90/10 rule for interstates and Virginia was able to meet its 10% obligation without tolls or other stuff.  When Virginia has had to foot the entire bill (HRBT WB lanes, CBBT, Midtown and Downtown Tunnels) they instituted tolls.
Given that states have to first instance the entire cost for federal-aid projects I don't see how the fact that VA could cover the match the design and construction cost would lead to them not putting tolls on the facilities.

I would put a much firmer bet on political pressure.  I am also unsure of where FHWA regs stood at the time, especially when the MMBT was built.  Because I-664 was new, it may have had to have been toll-free at that time due to the regulations regarding the use of federal funds at the time.

VDOT built them as new Interstate construction and as such they qualified for 90% Federal Aid Interstate funding.  FHWA did not allow tolls on such FAI Interstate highways then, plus the region wanted them to be toll-free.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Rothman on June 19, 2017, 02:24:04 PM
Keep in mind that the only reason (IMO) that MMBT and HRBT (EB lanes) weren't tolled to begin with is that they were funded under the 90/10 rule for interstates and Virginia was able to meet its 10% obligation without tolls or other stuff.  When Virginia has had to foot the entire bill (HRBT WB lanes, CBBT, Midtown and Downtown Tunnels) they instituted tolls.
Given that states have to first instance the entire cost for federal-aid projects I don't see how the fact that VA could cover the match the design and construction cost would lead to them not putting tolls on the facilities.

I would put a much firmer bet on political pressure.  I am also unsure of where FHWA regs stood at the time, especially when the MMBT was built.  Because I-664 was new, it may have had to have been toll-free at that time due to the regulations regarding the use of federal funds at the time.

VDOT built them as new Interstate construction and as such they qualified for 90% Federal Aid Interstate funding.  FHWA did not allow tolls on such FAI Interstate highways then, plus the region wanted them to be toll-free.
Voila.  My suspicions confirmed.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on June 19, 2017, 11:40:37 PM
Keep in mind that the only reason (IMO) that MMBT and HRBT (EB lanes) weren't tolled to begin with is that they were funded under the 90/10 rule for interstates and Virginia was able to meet its 10% obligation without tolls or other stuff.  When Virginia has had to foot the entire bill (HRBT WB lanes, CBBT, Midtown and Downtown Tunnels) they instituted tolls.
Given that states have to first instance the entire cost for federal-aid projects I don't see how the fact that VA could cover the match the design and construction cost would lead to them not putting tolls on the facilities.

I would put a much firmer bet on political pressure.  I am also unsure of where FHWA regs stood at the time, especially when the MMBT was built.  Because I-664 was new, it may have had to have been toll-free at that time due to the regulations regarding the use of federal funds at the time.
VDOT built them as new Interstate construction and as such they qualified for 90% Federal Aid Interstate funding.  FHWA did not allow tolls on such FAI Interstate highways then, plus the region wanted them to be toll-free.
Voila.  My suspicions confirmed.

Very expensive new construction Interstate projects, but generally FHWA funded them if the state would provide the 10% matching funds (which could be a large sum in and of itself).
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on June 20, 2017, 09:25:33 AM
Very expensive new construction Interstate projects, but generally FHWA funded them if the state would provide the 10% matching funds (which could be a large sum in and of itself).

As I think you  know, the federal government allowed Maryland to collect (and they continue to collect) tolls on I-95 at the  FMT (Fort McHenry Tunnel) in Baltimore, even though the state received 90% Interstate funding to build it, presumably in part because the cost of building that crossing was extremely  expensive (and it is not cheap to operate and maintain either).
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on June 20, 2017, 11:32:00 AM
Very expensive new construction Interstate projects, but generally FHWA funded them if the state would provide the 10% matching funds (which could be a large sum in and of itself).
As I think you  know, the federal government allowed Maryland to collect (and they continue to collect) tolls on I-95 at the  FMT (Fort McHenry Tunnel) in Baltimore, even though the state received 90% Interstate funding to build it, presumably in part because the cost of building that crossing was extremely expensive (and it is not cheap to operate and maintain either).

Yes I did, and after 32 years where they would have had plenty of time to pay off that 10%, they are still allowed to have tolls; I wonder how FHWA provided for the toll extension.  The other two tolled harbor crossings (I-895 and I-695) did not receive federal funds.  There would be a traffic balance issue whereby making the I-95 crossing toll-free would cause a major imbalance in traffic distribution between the crossings, unless all three were made toll-free and that would be unlikely.  I'm sure that MdTA wants to keep tolls on all three.

The I-77 West Virginia Turnpike expansion in the 1980s was also funded with 90% federal funds, and they were allowed to continue collecting tolls, it was another very expensive project.

But these were exceptional cases, the rule for nearly every other major Interstate project funded with 90% federal funds was that it would be toll-free.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on June 20, 2017, 12:35:21 PM
Very expensive new construction Interstate projects, but generally FHWA funded them if the state would provide the 10% matching funds (which could be a large sum in and of itself).
As I think you  know, the federal government allowed Maryland to collect (and they continue to collect) tolls on I-95 at the  FMT (Fort McHenry Tunnel) in Baltimore, even though the state received 90% Interstate funding to build it, presumably in part because the cost of building that crossing was extremely expensive (and it is not cheap to operate and maintain either).

Yes I did, and after 32 years where they would have had plenty of time to pay off that 10%, they are still allowed to have tolls; I wonder how FHWA provided for the toll extension.  The other two tolled harbor crossings (I-895 and I-695) did not receive federal funds.  There would be a traffic balance issue whereby making the I-95 crossing toll-free would cause a major imbalance in traffic distribution between the crossings, unless all three were made toll-free and that would be unlikely.  I'm sure that MdTA wants to keep tolls on all three.

The MDTA wants the revenue, and they really need it, even for the FMT (I-95), which is starting to  show signs of age, even though it is much newer than  the BHT (I-895).   I have read that they are replacing or rehabilitating the FMT tunnel decks, the lighting system in the tunnel tubes, the high-mast lighting at the approaches to the tunnel portals and toll plaza and the exhaust fan systems (among other things).

Quote
The I-77 West Virginia Turnpike expansion in the 1980s was also funded with 90% federal funds, and they were allowed to continue collecting tolls, it was another very expensive project.

Agreed.

Quote
But these were exceptional cases, the rule for nearly every other major Interstate project funded with 90% federal funds was that it would be toll-free.

Also agreed, though I think with sections of Interstate that are uniquely expensive to operate and maintain (and the two "free"  bridge tunnel crossings over and under Hampton Roads definitely qualify), I think  tolling should be allowed, if the state agency wants to do that.  Beyond that, the "original" HRBT (when it was two lanes undivided) was a toll crossing (I think we crossed it once or twice when I was a child).

This is one reason I do not  have a problem with the Pennsylvania Turnpike, with its many tunnels charging tolls (though I am not a fan of the Act 44/Act 89 exorbitant toll rates with the dollars  then diverted  to subsidize things having nothing to do with the Turnpike).
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on July 15, 2017, 06:19:10 AM
Daily Press:  Rep. Rob Wittman eyes Defense dollars to reduce toll on Coleman Bridge (http://www.dailypress.com/news/gloucester-county/dp-nws-gloucester-county-wittman-coleman-bridge-20170714-story.html)

Considering the toll is only $2 for cars that is NB only ($0.85 with an EZPASS), I have a hard time believing that the Navy would justify this.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: plain on July 15, 2017, 07:54:50 AM
Daily Press:  Rep. Rob Wittman eyes Defense dollars to reduce toll on Coleman Bridge (http://www.dailypress.com/news/gloucester-county/dp-nws-gloucester-county-wittman-coleman-bridge-20170714-story.html)

Considering the toll is only $2 for cars that is NB only ($0.85 with an EZPASS), I have a hard time believing that the Navy would justify this.

Yeah I doubt this will occur
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on July 16, 2017, 09:49:34 PM
Daily Press:  Rep. Rob Wittman eyes Defense dollars to reduce toll on Coleman Bridge (http://www.dailypress.com/news/gloucester-county/dp-nws-gloucester-county-wittman-coleman-bridge-20170714-story.html)

Considering the toll is only $2 for cars that is NB only ($0.85 with an EZPASS), I have a hard time believing that the Navy would justify this.

IMO ridiculous. 

People that moved to the Middle Peninsula of Virginia after the most-recent  imposition of tolls (or when it  was being discussed) knew darned well that there would be  a modest toll to cross the Coleman Bridge.

If Department of Defense employees and contractors do not want to pay that toll, then there are plenty of places in Virginia and even North Carolina where they can live without having cross that bridge.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on July 26, 2017, 04:11:34 PM
Virginian-Pilot:Could ERC be eyeing changes to the way it tolls Midtown, Downtown tunnels? Survey asks for opinion on HOV (https://pilotonline.com/news/local/transportation/elizabeth-river-crossings-may-be-eyeing-changes-to-the-way/article_44d53c58-c5ba-5c9e-a1d2-f9f35755a59b.html)

Most notably, there is no mention of the EZPASS Flex.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Jmiles32 on September 22, 2017, 06:36:16 PM
Quote
Quote from: Jmiles32 on August 16, 2017, 12:09:52 AM
IMO I-64 needs to be 8 lanes from I-664 to I-564 with four separate two lane tubes/bridges at the HRBT, basically like the I-95 Fort McHenry Tunnel in Baltimore.

Looks like something similar may happen after all
http://www.dailypress.com/news/politics/dp-nws-hrbt-extra-lanes-20170921-story.html
Quote
The Virginia Department of Transportation is working on an idea to add four tunnel lanes, instead of two, to the Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel to speed traffic between the Peninsula and South Hampton Roads.

The idea is to add one lane each way over land, in order to keep VDOT’s promise to keep approaches to the HRBT within the current right of way for Interstate 64, but to add two lanes in each direction once the roadway goes over and then under the water, said Kevin Page, executive director of the Hampton Roads Transportation Accountability Commission, the regional transportation funding body.

Quote
The three-by-land, four-by-water approach is similar to I-95’s Baltimore Harbor Tunnel, Page said.

“Based on what we know now, it looks feasible,” said Martha Gross, major projects manager for VDOT.

“In addition to dealing with congestion, it’s a chance to get the tunnel capacity we need now, instead of 20 years from now,” she added.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on September 22, 2017, 08:30:23 PM
The idea is to add one lane each way over land, in order to keep VDOT’s promise to keep approaches to the HRBT within the current right of way for Interstate 64, but to add two lanes in each direction once the roadway goes over and then under the water, said Kevin Page, executive director of the Hampton Roads Transportation Accountability Commission, the regional transportation funding body.
Quote
The three-by-land, four-by-water approach is similar to I-95’s Baltimore Harbor Tunnel, Page said.
“Based on what we know now, it looks feasible,” said Martha Gross, major projects manager for VDOT.
“In addition to dealing with congestion, it’s a chance to get the tunnel capacity we need now, instead of 20 years from now,” she added.

That's baloney any way you slice it.

That is NOT similar to I-95 in Baltimore, as it was built as an 8 lane (4 each way) highway thru Baltimore, with lane drops to 3 lanes at the planned interchanges with I-70 and I-83, given the large amounts of traffic that would exit before and enter after the junction.  After the I-70 and I-83 extensions were canceled, the highway was widened to 4 lanes each way at unbuilt I-70 and soon will be at unbuilt I-83.  North of Eastern Avenue I-95 will be widened to 4 lanes each way as well up to the I-895 split. 

VDOT needs to either provide 4 lanes each way on I-64 between I-664 in Hampton and I-564 in Norfolk, or forget about widening this segment at all.

Spending $3.4 billion to merely widen this segment to 6 lanes (3 each way), is a fantastic waste of money, for a highway that would be obsolete when completed, and I can't believe that they can actually assemble that size of funding package in the first place.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on September 23, 2017, 08:45:03 AM
You can stop your blow-up, Scott.  It's been well documented that water crossings are far more of a chokepoint than regular highways-on-land.  Given the tendency for drivers to slow down considerably for tunnel crossings, going to 4 lanes each way through the tunnel makes a lot of sense.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on September 23, 2017, 12:30:42 PM
You can stop your blow-up, Scott.  It's been well documented that water crossings are far more of a chokepoint than regular highways-on-land.  Given the tendency for drivers to slow down considerably for tunnel crossings, going to 4 lanes each way through the tunnel makes a lot of sense.

Why are you defending this project, Adam?   I have never heard of building more lanes in a highway tunnel than on the approaches.  It is a waste of resources.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: compdude787 on September 23, 2017, 08:22:25 PM
You can stop your blow-up, Scott.  It's been well documented that water crossings are far more of a chokepoint than regular highways-on-land.  Given the tendency for drivers to slow down considerably for tunnel crossings, going to 4 lanes each way through the tunnel makes a lot of sense.

Makes sense to me.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on September 24, 2017, 11:30:57 AM
That is NOT similar to I-95 in Baltimore, as it was built as an 8 lane (4 each way) highway thru Baltimore, with lane drops to 3 lanes at the planned interchanges with I-70 and I-83, given the large amounts of traffic that would exit before and enter after the junction.  After the I-70 and I-83 extensions were canceled, the highway was widened to 4 lanes each way at unbuilt I-70 and soon will be at unbuilt I-83.  North of Eastern Avenue I-95 will be widened to 4 lanes each way as well up to the I-895 split. 

I-95 in Baltimore City will be continuously four lanes each way for a total of 8 from just north of the Fort McHenry Tunnel toll plaza to the I-95/I-895 junction on the northeast side of Baltimore.  There were (are, for now) three lane sections between the tolls and Exit 59, MD-150, Eastern Avenue, but these will be gone soon enough.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on September 24, 2017, 02:35:07 PM
^^^ It's not a "waste" when you consider the particulars of traffic at the HRBT.  I'd have preferred an 8 lane facility throughout, but I'll take 6 lanes on land and 8 lanes across the HRBT any day over the current situation.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on September 24, 2017, 02:44:24 PM
^^^ It's not a "waste" when you consider the particulars of traffic at the HRBT.  I'd have preferred an 8 lane facility throughout, but I'll take 6 lanes on land and 8 lanes across the HRBT any day over the current situation.

Not worth $3.4 billion, as I already stated, to gain one thru lane each way.

The transportation authority claims that they have the funding package, but I can't believe that, especially when the only toll revenue would be from one HOT lane each way.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on September 24, 2017, 02:53:34 PM
^^^ It's not a "waste" when you consider the particulars of traffic at the HRBT.  I'd have preferred an 8 lane facility throughout, but I'll take 6 lanes on land and 8 lanes across the HRBT any day over the current situation.

Perversely, you have nearly the opposite when approaching from the  Hampton side - a nice wide freeway coming down the Peninsula (and work is in progress there now), that gets narrower and narrower as traffic approaches the last exit eastbound at VA-169, leading predictably to long queues of traffic. 

IMO, the HRBT should be 8  lanes, and ideally toll-supported (along with the I-664 and U.S. 17 crossings of the lower James River).
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: LM117 on September 24, 2017, 04:56:50 PM
IMO, the HRBT should be 8  lanes, and ideally toll-supported (along with the I-664 and U.S. 17 crossings of the lower James River).

I agree that the HRBT should be 8 lanes, but there's no chance in hell of Hampton Roads supporting the idea of tolling all the major crossings. It's a good way to put a damper on an already anemic Hampton Roads economy. Ask Portsmouth how well the tolled crossings over the Elizabeth River benefitted them...
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on September 24, 2017, 08:19:11 PM
IMO, the HRBT should be 8  lanes, and ideally toll-supported (along with the I-664 and U.S. 17 crossings of the lower James River).
I agree that the HRBT should be 8 lanes, but there's no chance in hell of Hampton Roads supporting the idea of tolling all the major crossings. It's a good way to put a damper on an already anemic Hampton Roads economy. Ask Portsmouth how well the tolled crossings over the Elizabeth River benefitted them...

The Elizabeth River Tunnels Project has huge benefits to Portsmouth and other South Hampton Roads cities, but the re-tolling of tunnels that were de-tolled in 1987, has been a hard pill to swallow for many people in the region.

If they try to re-toll the Hampton Roads crossings (actually I-664 has never been tolled), I would expect enormous public opposition to the point to where it probably would be impossible to approve.

The block to making the HRBT corridor 8 lanes, is the approaches in Hampton and Norfolk between I-664 and I-564.  You can see on Google Maps Satellite View how the original highway sliced thru neighborhoods and across estuarial creeks.  Widening the highway to 8 lanes would have major right-of-way impacts to many homes and those estuarial creeks.  Again, approving this widening would be close to impossible if not actually impossible.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on September 24, 2017, 09:41:19 PM
IMO, the HRBT should be 8  lanes, and ideally toll-supported (along with the I-664 and U.S. 17 crossings of the lower James River).

I agree that the HRBT should be 8 lanes, but there's no chance in hell of Hampton Roads supporting the idea of tolling all the major crossings. It's a good way to put a damper on an already anemic Hampton Roads economy. Ask Portsmouth how well the tolled crossings over the Elizabeth River benefitted them...

The HRBT (I-64 and U.S. 60) and the  James River Bridge (U.S. 17 and U.S. 258) were originally toll crossings.  The MMMBT (I-664) was always "free" to cross.

All of them are expensive to maintain and require constant monitoring and patrol for obvious reasons. 

If people in the area want more highway capacity across the Hampton Roads, they have three choices:

(1) Get the Virginia General Assembly to approve another (large) increase in motor fuel taxes to fund the construction of more capacity;
(2) Go along with tolling; or
(3) Continue to deal with extensive and worsening congestion approaching the crossings.

There's no "free" opinion available.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on September 24, 2017, 10:13:46 PM
The HRBT (I-64 and U.S. 60) and the  James River Bridge (U.S. 17 and U.S. 258) were originally toll crossings.  The MMMBT (I-664) was always "free" to cross.
All of them are expensive to maintain and require constant monitoring and patrol for obvious reasons. 
If people in the area want more highway capacity across the Hampton Roads, they have three choices:
(1) Get the Virginia General Assembly to approve another (large) increase in motor fuel taxes to fund the construction of more capacity;
(2) Go along with tolling; or
(3) Continue to deal with extensive and worsening congestion approaching the crossings.
There's no "free" opinion available.

(4) They could extend I-564 to I-664 for $4 billion and have a whole new 4-lane bridge-tunnel which could exploit the much lower traffic volumes on I-664 in both directions, between Norfolk and Newport News, and between Norfolk and Suffolk.  It would also serve as an uptown crossing of the Elizabeth River and provide more capacity beyond that of the existing two Elizabeth River tunnels.  It would also complete a South Hampton Roads Beltway.  It could be tolled.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on September 25, 2017, 02:10:55 AM
The HRBT (I-64 and U.S. 60) and the  James River Bridge (U.S. 17 and U.S. 258) were originally toll crossings.  The MMMBT (I-664) was always "free" to cross.
All of them are expensive to maintain and require constant monitoring and patrol for obvious reasons. 
If people in the area want more highway capacity across the Hampton Roads, they have three choices:
(1) Get the Virginia General Assembly to approve another (large) increase in motor fuel taxes to fund the construction of more capacity;
(2) Go along with tolling; or
(3) Continue to deal with extensive and worsening congestion approaching the crossings.
There's no "free" opinion available.

(4) They could extend I-564 to I-664 for $4 billion and have a whole new 4-lane bridge-tunnel which could exploit the much lower traffic volumes on I-664 in both directions, between Norfolk and Newport News, and between Norfolk and Suffolk.  It would also serve as an uptown crossing of the Elizabeth River and provide more capacity beyond that of the existing two Elizabeth River tunnels.  It would also complete a South Hampton Roads Beltway.  It could be tolled.

Could that $4 billion purchase four (not 2) added lanes of capacity across Hampton Roads at the HRBT?
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on September 25, 2017, 06:40:38 AM
They could extend I-564 to I-664 for $4 billion and have a whole new 4-lane bridge-tunnel which could exploit the much lower traffic volumes on I-664 in both directions, between Norfolk and Newport News, and between Norfolk and Suffolk.  It would also serve as an uptown crossing of the Elizabeth River and provide more capacity beyond that of the existing two Elizabeth River tunnels.  It would also complete a South Hampton Roads Beltway.  It could be tolled.
Could that $4 billion purchase four (not 2) added lanes of capacity across Hampton Roads at the HRBT?

No.  They have not estimated the cost of widening to 8 lanes the 10 miles of I-64 approaches in Hampton and Norfolk between I-664 and I-564.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on September 25, 2017, 07:28:32 AM
Despite appearances, the MMBT is not as "clear sailing" as it used to be.  And it wouldn't take much coming from the proposed "Patriots Crossing" to put it at a level rivaling that of the HRBT.  There's currently (per VDOT 2016 volumes) about a 26,000 vpd difference between the MMBT and HRBT.  That's less than half of what they're projecting for the Patriots Crossing (forecasting roughly 78K in "2018" per the project's 2012 traffic technical report (http://www.virginiadot.org/projects/resources/hampton_roads/DRAFT_TrafficTechnical_Report-2-28-2012.pdf).  By the numbers of that same traffic technical report, the Patriots Crossing would trade today's HRBT mess for an even worse MMBT mess (roughly 20K vpd more than today's HRBT).

In short, the Patriots Crossing won't work without a corresponding widening of the MMBT.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on September 25, 2017, 12:30:53 PM
Despite appearances, the MMBT is not as "clear sailing" as it used to be.  And it wouldn't take much coming from the proposed "Patriots Crossing" to put it at a level rivaling that of the HRBT.  There's currently (per VDOT 2016 volumes) about a 26,000 vpd difference between the MMBT and HRBT.  That's less than half of what they're projecting for the Patriots Crossing (forecasting roughly 78K in "2018" per the project's 2012 traffic technical report (http://www.virginiadot.org/projects/resources/hampton_roads/DRAFT_TrafficTechnical_Report-2-28-2012.pdf).  By the numbers of that same traffic technical report, the Patriots Crossing would trade today's HRBT mess for an even worse MMBT mess (roughly 20K vpd more than today's HRBT).
In short, the Patriots Crossing won't work without a corresponding widening of the MMBT.

I don't see where this Michael Baker study has actually been validated by VDOT or the regional TA.  I wonder if this is where the current HRBT widening scheme came from??

In any event, they can't just post a number if there is nowhere for that much traffic to go.  They also make the assumption that the Craney Island Connector would be included, which would considerably boost the numbers.  I would not necessarily include that connector in the project.

The I-564 Extension could distribute traffic to both directions of I-664, as I said, between Norfolk and Newport News, and between Norfolk and Suffolk.  So just for example, 52,000 on I-564, with 26,000 to/from each side of I-664.  Major benefits from the outset, more to accrue in the future if the I-664 tunnel (I find that "Merrimac" appellation to be irritating for several reasons) and Newport News approaches is widened to 8 lanes.

The I-564 Extension proposal has some limitations.  The current HRBT widening scheme is a bad project.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on September 25, 2017, 01:05:29 PM
It was validated enough to where VDOT used it in their draft 2011 Reevaluation (http://www.virginiadot.org/projects/resources/hampton_roads/Draft_HRCS_EA_11-30-11.pdf) of the previous CBA 9/Third Crossing project.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on September 25, 2017, 01:19:38 PM
It was validated enough to where VDOT used it in their draft 2011 Reevaluation (http://www.virginiadot.org/projects/resources/hampton_roads/Draft_HRCS_EA_11-30-11.pdf) of the previous CBA 9/Third Crossing project.

The I-564 Extension and the Craney Island Connector.

Not a "Draft 2011 Reevaluation of the previous CBA 9", just of 2 of the 5 segments (those I listed above) of CBA 9.

I would like to see the figures without the Craney Island Connector.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on September 25, 2017, 05:32:12 PM
The HRBT (I-64 and U.S. 60) and the  James River Bridge (U.S. 17 and U.S. 258) were originally toll crossings.  The MMMBT (I-664) was always "free" to cross.
All of them are expensive to maintain and require constant monitoring and patrol for obvious reasons. 
If people in the area want more highway capacity across the Hampton Roads, they have three choices:
(1) Get the Virginia General Assembly to approve another (large) increase in motor fuel taxes to fund the construction of more capacity;
(2) Go along with tolling; or
(3) Continue to deal with extensive and worsening congestion approaching the crossings.
There's no "free" opinion available.
(4) They could extend I-564 to I-664 for $4 billion and have a whole new 4-lane bridge-tunnel which could exploit the much lower traffic volumes on I-664 in both directions, between Norfolk and Newport News, and between Norfolk and Suffolk.  It would also serve as an uptown crossing of the Elizabeth River and provide more capacity beyond that of the existing two Elizabeth River tunnels.  It would also complete a South Hampton Roads Beltway.  It could be tolled.

Why did I forget to post this?

(5) Get the U.S. Congress  to approve an increase in motor fuel taxes to properly fund the Interstate highway system.  This would mean ample funding to provide 90% FHWA funds for improving the Interstate highway system as was the case up to the mid-1990s or so.  That is how I-664 was funded and how the parallel HRBT and parallel Downtown Tunnel were funded, for example.  That is how today's expansions to the Interstate highway system could be funded.

(6) Given the massive military presence in the Hampton Roads area and the consequent major traffic generation, the case should be made to provide special FHWA allocations above and beyond normal Interstate highway system funding.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Jmiles32 on December 29, 2017, 01:20:42 PM
http://www.13newsnow.com/traffic/i-64-express-lanes-begin-on-january-10/503183144
Quote
NORFOLK, Va. (WVEC) -- The Virginia Department of Transportation has set a date to begin tolled Express Lanes on Interstate 64: Wednesday, January 10, 2018.

VDOT had originally wanted the tolls to be activated in December, but further testing forced them to push it back.

Virginia Secretary of Transportation Aubrey Layne said VDOT was not in a position to open the new tolls and he directed the agency to perform an additional 60 days of testing because "this facility's credibility will not be called into question."

The Express Lanes are intended to help ease congestion on an 8.4-mile stretch between the I-264 and I-564 interchanges.

Once tolling begins, Express Lanes will be free and open to all drivers outside of the Express Lane operating hours, which will be Monday through Friday from 5 to 9 a.m. and 2 to 6 p.m. Motorists will need an E-ZPass or E-ZPass Flex to use the lanes during operating hours
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on December 29, 2017, 04:24:32 PM
http://www.13newsnow.com/traffic/i-64-express-lanes-begin-on-january-10/503183144
Quote
NORFOLK, Va. (WVEC) -- The Virginia Department of Transportation has set a date to begin tolled Express Lanes on Interstate 64: Wednesday, January 10, 2018.
VDOT had originally wanted the tolls to be activated in December, but further testing forced them to push it back.
Virginia Secretary of Transportation Aubrey Layne said VDOT was not in a position to open the new tolls and he directed the agency to perform an additional 60 days of testing because "this facility's credibility will not be called into question."
The Express Lanes are intended to help ease congestion on an 8.4-mile stretch between the I-264 and I-564 interchanges.
Once tolling begins, Express Lanes will be free and open to all drivers outside of the Express Lane operating hours, which will be Monday through Friday from 5 to 9 a.m. and 2 to 6 p.m. Motorists will need an E-ZPass or E-ZPass Flex to use the lanes during operating hours

What happens with the concurrent-flow HOV lanes between just south of I-264 and VA-168 Battlefield Blvd.?  Do they become HOT as well, which would be a logical part of the above scheme?
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on December 29, 2017, 04:54:12 PM
More details here:

The Virginian-Pilot:  High Occupancy Toll lanes on I-64 will open in early January (https://pilotonline.com/news/local/transportation/article_f7278908-1ccb-5853-82ff-5a55cfbcd56a.html)

Quote
High Occupancy Toll lanes on a stretch of Interstate 64 will begin in early January, the Virginia Department of Transportation announced Friday.

Quote
Drivers without passengers will be able to pay to use an 8.4-mile stretch between the I-264 interchange and I-564 during certain hours.

Quote
The lanes will open Jan. 10, VDOT said. They'll be available to paying drivers from 5-to-9 a.m. westbound and 2-to-6 p.m. eastbound, Monday through Friday. Drivers will need an E-ZPass or E-ZPass Flex to access them.

Quote
Outside of those hours, the lanes will remain free and open to everyone.

Quote
This will be the first time solo drivers in Hampton Roads will be able to use the lanes during peak travel times, VDOT said.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Jmiles32 on December 29, 2017, 10:50:17 PM
http://www.13newsnow.com/traffic/i-64-express-lanes-begin-on-january-10/503183144
Quote
NORFOLK, Va. (WVEC) -- The Virginia Department of Transportation has set a date to begin tolled Express Lanes on Interstate 64: Wednesday, January 10, 2018.
VDOT had originally wanted the tolls to be activated in December, but further testing forced them to push it back.
Virginia Secretary of Transportation Aubrey Layne said VDOT was not in a position to open the new tolls and he directed the agency to perform an additional 60 days of testing because "this facility's credibility will not be called into question."
The Express Lanes are intended to help ease congestion on an 8.4-mile stretch between the I-264 and I-564 interchanges.
Once tolling begins, Express Lanes will be free and open to all drivers outside of the Express Lane operating hours, which will be Monday through Friday from 5 to 9 a.m. and 2 to 6 p.m. Motorists will need an E-ZPass or E-ZPass Flex to use the lanes during operating hours

What happens with the concurrent-flow HOV lanes between just south of I-264 and VA-168 Battlefield Blvd.?  Do they become HOT as well, which would be a logical part of the above scheme?
Correct and that is Segment 2 of a plan to eventually have HOT lanes on I-64 from Exit 255(Jefferson Avenue) all the way to Exit 299(I-264/I-664).
https://pilotonline.com/news/local/transportation/article_a1e8e6a8-ed57-5b42-88a4-94fa3f4a90e4.html
Quote
Segment 2: Adds 15 miles of new HOT lanes in each direction from Bowers Hill to the I-464 interchange. Converts existing HOV lanes to HOT lanes from I-464 to I-264 interchange. Will be voted on in September. Would open in 2021.
Unlike the first segment, these lanes will have HOT rules 24/7, though the toll will be minimal during times of low congestion. Part of this route was originally studied a year ago, but VDOT determined it wasn’t viable on its own.
Title: Re: Virginia
Post by: Beltway on December 30, 2017, 10:12:54 PM
Completion of the Elizabeth River Tunnels Project.

"Despite using a tunnel design rarely used in the U.S., a joint venture of Skanska, Kiewit Construction and Weeks Marine safely delivered the $2.1-billion Elizabeth River Tunnels project in September, one year ahead of schedule. The new, nearly 3,800-ft-long tunnel under the Elizabeth River between Portsmouth and Norfolk, Va., is one of the first U.S. all-concrete, immersed-tube tunnels designed for deep water.

The project was developed under a public-private partnership between the Virginia Dept. of  Transportation and Elizabeth River Crossings, the Macquarie-Skanska consortium that financed the project and will operate and maintain the tunnels and other facilities for a 58-year concession period. The construction joint venture, dubbed SKW Constructors, held the design-build contract for site and bridge work and constructing a new tunnel as well as rehabilitating three existing tunnels and constructing an expressway extension. Virginia DOT maintains ownership of the infrastructure and will continue to oversee the developer’s activities and operation."

Project of the Year/Excellence Award in Safety: Elizabeth River Tunnels Project
https://www.enr.com/articles/43071-project-of-the-yearexcellence-award-in-safety-elizabeth-river-tunnels-project

Moved post here to be consistent with most other information on this project.  -Mark
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Thing 342 on January 08, 2018, 03:58:11 PM
The I-64 reversible lanes in Norfolk / VB are set to go into HOT mode starting this Wednesday (01/10). Here's a bit of new signage: (taken by VDOT)
(https://lintvwavy.files.wordpress.com/2018/01/express-lanes-january-6-2018-3.jpg?w=648&zoom=3)

I'm having a bit of trouble figuring out what happens to the lanes outside of the rush periods (5-9a WB, 2-6p EB). All the stuff I've seen about them says that HOT only applies for these hours, but does that mean they become open to all traffic after hours? Do you still need an EZ-Pass in that case?
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Jmiles32 on January 08, 2018, 04:19:26 PM
I'm having a bit of trouble figuring out what happens to the lanes outside of the rush periods (5-9a WB, 2-6p EB). All the stuff I've seen about them says that HOT only applies for these hours, but does that mean they become open to all traffic after hours? Do you still need an EZ-Pass in that case?
Yes like the I-66 HOT lanes inside the beltway, outside of rush hour the lanes are free to all traffic. Not positive whether or not one would still need an EZ-Pass during off hours travel such as on a weekend, but I'm sure VDOT encourages it regardless.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: VTGoose on January 08, 2018, 08:41:39 PM
I'm having a bit of trouble figuring out what happens to the lanes outside of the rush periods (5-9a WB, 2-6p EB). All the stuff I've seen about them says that HOT only applies for these hours, but does that mean they become open to all traffic after hours? Do you still need an EZ-Pass in that case?
Yes like the I-66 HOT lanes inside the beltway, outside of rush hour the lanes are free to all traffic. Not positive whether or not one would still need an EZ-Pass during off hours travel such as on a weekend, but I'm sure VDOT encourages it regardless.

"Drivers don’t need an E-ZPass to use the lanes on weekends or during the 16 hours of each weekday when they are not tolled."

See https://pilotonline.com/news/local/transportation/article_00b922b9-94e0-51b3-b50e-48c3270122c7.html
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Jordanes on January 08, 2018, 09:22:33 PM
(https://lintvwavy.files.wordpress.com/2018/01/express-lanes-january-6-2018-3.jpg?w=648&zoom=3)

How is the E-ZPass reader able to determine that there are 2 or more people in a car? I really can't figure that one out.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on January 08, 2018, 09:35:09 PM
How is the E-ZPass reader able to determine that there are 2 or more people in a car? I really can't figure that one out.

Because it does not.  You have to have an EZPASS Flex that is switched into HOV mode when you have 2 or more in the vehicle.  With a normal EZPASS, you pay the toll no matter how many people are in a vehicle.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: VTGoose on January 09, 2018, 09:39:21 AM
How is the E-ZPass reader able to determine that there are 2 or more people in a car? I really can't figure that one out.

Because it does not.  You have to have an EZPASS Flex that is switched into HOV mode when you have 2 or more in the vehicle.  With a normal EZPASS, you pay the toll no matter how many people are in a vehicle.

It uses the "trust but verify" caveat. From the Virginian-Pilot article above:

"Cheaters will be caught using information from E-ZPass transponders and police spot checks. There’s also the honor system. Officers will be on hand occasionally to check and cite drivers for violations.

Officials say nearly a fifth of drivers cheated on the carpool lanes in Northern Virginia. That dropped to 1 percent after HOT lanes were installed. People were willing to pay to use them if they could, officials said."
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Mapmikey on January 09, 2018, 07:20:54 PM
I can confirm that VSP do patrol I95 HOT lanes solely for cheaters using the flex pass in the HOV position without the requisite number of occupants, in addition to having no EZpass at all.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Jordanes on January 10, 2018, 06:10:01 PM
How is the E-ZPass reader able to determine that there are 2 or more people in a car? I really can't figure that one out.

Because it does not.  You have to have an EZPASS Flex that is switched into HOV mode when you have 2 or more in the vehicle.  With a normal EZPASS, you pay the toll no matter how many people are in a vehicle.

Okay, then I'll rephrase my question: how does the E-ZPass Flex know that there are 2 or more people in the car? I really can't figure that one out.  :spin:
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: plain on January 10, 2018, 06:40:44 PM
How is the E-ZPass reader able to determine that there are 2 or more people in a car? I really can't figure that one out.

Because it does not.  You have to have an EZPASS Flex that is switched into HOV mode when you have 2 or more in the vehicle.  With a normal EZPASS, you pay the toll no matter how many people are in a vehicle.

Okay, then I'll rephrase my question: how does the E-ZPass Flex know that there are 2 or more people in the car? I really can't figure that one out.  :spin:
On the FLEX there's a switch that you flip when you want to be in HOV mode, hence the name.
Picture: (not mine)
(http://connection.media.clients.ellingtoncms.com/img/photos/2012/07/30/V0801-202_t670.jpg?b3f6a5d7692ccc373d56e40cf708e3fa67d9af9d)

I know what Jordanes is actually getting at... VTGoose & Mapmikey answered his question but he seems to still be a little confused on it. Maybe in the future the cops will have some kind of detector in their cruisers that lets them know if a single occupied car passing by them has the HOV switched on or not, who knows. But for now they're using the techniques that have been mentioned.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: VTGoose on January 11, 2018, 09:37:05 AM
How is the E-ZPass reader able to determine that there are 2 or more people in a car? I really can't figure that one out.

Because it does not.  You have to have an EZPASS Flex that is switched into HOV mode when you have 2 or more in the vehicle.  With a normal EZPASS, you pay the toll no matter how many people are in a vehicle.

Okay, then I'll rephrase my question: how does the E-ZPass Flex know that there are 2 or more people in the car? I really can't figure that one out.  :spin:

As mentioned above, there is a switch on the E-ZPass transponder that a driver moves to activate the HOV mode -- but that only changes the signal that is returned when a detector hits the transponder. It is up to the honesty of the driver to flip the switch when and IF there are two or more people in the car. If there is only the driver in the car and he flips the switch to take advantage of the HOT lane then the driver is breaking the law and could be pulled over and issued a ticket. Those who try to get around the rules (HOT lane, using carpool lane when alone in the car, speeding, etc. et al) are playing the odds that they won't get caught. If a driver gets from Point A to Point B without seeing a police car, they "win" and will play the game again. The ethics of any of this could be debated for days and is best left up to personal integrity.

Bruce in Blacksburg
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 1995hoo on January 11, 2018, 10:03:13 AM
I will add that the I-66 HO/T operations inside the Beltway add a wrinkle to all this. I-66 inside the Beltway is HOV-2 rides free with an E-ZPass Flex. I-495 and I-95 are HOV-3 rides free. Ms1995hoo and I have taken advantage of the free ride on I-66 twice since HO/T operations began, and we have to remember to flip the HOV switch to the off position after we pass the last gantry on I-66 and before we pass the first gantry on the Beltway. This is not all that big a deal for me other than leaning over and having to remember which direction to flip the switch (I can't see the E-ZPass Flex itself because the rearview mirror blocks it from my view), but I could see it maybe being a problem for short people because Ms1995hoo says she can't reach it.

More likely people in that situation will either forget to flip the switch or "forget" to flip the switch (quotation marks denoting people deliberately cheating). Indeed I got an e-mail from ezpassva.com on December 11 that read as follows (boldface in original). It made me wonder how many tickets were issued to HOV-mode violators on the Beltway during the first week of I-66 HO/T operations (which began December 4).

Quote
Dear E-ZPass Customer,

The I-66 Express Lanes Inside the Beltway facility is open with new rules in effect during rush hour periods. As an E-ZPass Flex customer who travels between I-66 and the 95/495 Express Lanes, we want to remind you of the different carpool rules on each road.

If you are traveling on the I-66 Express Lanes with 2 occupants in the vehicle and your E-ZPass Flex set to HOV mode, do not forget to switch your E-ZPass Flex from HOV mode prior to using 495 or 95 Express Lanes. Otherwise, you could be stopped by Virginia State Police enforcing the HOV-3 requirements.

  95/495 Express LanesI-66 Express Lanes
Inside the Beltway
HOV occupancy
requirements
32
HOV rules in effectAt all timesEastbound 5:30 to 9:30 a.m.

Westbound 3 to 7 p.m.
For more informationExpressLanes.com66ExpressLanes.org
To reach
customer service
with questions
customercare@expresslanes.com
or
1-855-495-9777
66ExpressLanes.org/contact 
or
1-877-762-7824

Safe Travels,

Questions? Please contact customercare@Expresslanes.com
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on January 11, 2018, 01:25:28 PM
I will add that the I-66 HO/T operations inside the Beltway add a wrinkle to all this. I-66 inside the Beltway is HOV-2 rides free with an E-ZPass Flex. I-495 and I-95 are HOV-3 rides free. Ms1995hoo and I have taken advantage of the free ride on I-66 twice since HO/T operations began, and we have to remember to flip the HOV switch to the off position after we pass the last gantry on I-66 and before we pass the first gantry on the Beltway. This is not all that big a deal for me other than leaning over and having to remember which direction to flip the switch (I can't see the E-ZPass Flex itself because the rearview mirror blocks it from my view), but I could see it maybe being a problem for short people because Ms1995hoo says she can't reach it.
More likely people in that situation will either forget to flip the switch or "forget" to flip the switch (quotation marks denoting people deliberately cheating). Indeed I got an e-mail from ezpassva.com on December 11 that read as follows (boldface in original). It made me wonder how many tickets were issued to HOV-mode violators on the Beltway during the first week of I-66 HO/T operations (which began December 4).

Must be complicated keeping track of all the HOV and HOT rules in the D.C. area, given rule differences between highways, which can be subject to change as we have seen recently.  Maryland has its own set of rules for each of theirs, I-270 and US-50.

Those are just the freeways.  D.C. and VA have some arterials with HOV lanes.

My own usage is uncomplicated, I use the I-95 and I-495 HOT lanes about 4 times per year, and without the FLEX feature.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 1995hoo on January 11, 2018, 01:48:43 PM
The Maryland restrictions are irrelevant to me, other than the 24/7 left-lane restriction on US-50, and even that one's not a big deal because I don't use that road very often and when I do it's usually a weekend when traffic is light.

Keeping track of the HO/T restriction for purposes of the free ride is easy enough because I-66 inside the Beltway is the only road in Northern Virginia where the HOV aspect requires two people rather than three.

The thing I've always found harder to remember has been the differing HOV hours on the different roads in Northern Virginia. I-395's afternoon HOV hours are 3:30 to 6:00. I-66's former afternoon HOV hours were 4:00 to 6:30; the HO/T hours are, I believe, 3:00 to 7:00 (same as the outside-the-Beltway HOV hours on I-66). I have no idea what the HOV hours are on the Dulles Toll Road. The afternoon HOV hours on Route 1 through Old Town are, I believe, 4:00 to 6:00, and the inbound hours are 7:00 to 9:00. I-66's former inbound HOV hours inside the Beltway were 6:00 to 9:00; I believe I-395's are the same. I-66 outside the Beltway was 5:30 to 9:30 and the inside-the-Beltway HO/T hours now match that.

I always found the various mishmash of HOV hours to be somewhat confusing to try to remember. (I hear someone asking, "Why does it matter when a sign will tell you what the HOV hours are?" It matters because I have to commit to a particular route before I reach the HOV facility in question.) But you know, it's something you get used to over time.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: mrsman on January 12, 2018, 11:03:03 AM
How is the E-ZPass reader able to determine that there are 2 or more people in a car? I really can't figure that one out.

Because it does not.  You have to have an EZPASS Flex that is switched into HOV mode when you have 2 or more in the vehicle.  With a normal EZPASS, you pay the toll no matter how many people are in a vehicle.

Okay, then I'll rephrase my question: how does the E-ZPass Flex know that there are 2 or more people in the car? I really can't figure that one out.  :spin:
On the FLEX there's a switch that you flip when you want to be in HOV mode, hence the name.
Picture: (not mine)
(http://connection.media.clients.ellingtoncms.com/img/photos/2012/07/30/V0801-202_t670.jpg?b3f6a5d7692ccc373d56e40cf708e3fa67d9af9d)

I know what Jordanes is actually getting at... VTGoose & Mapmikey answered his question but he seems to still be a little confused on it. Maybe in the future the cops will have some kind of detector in their cruisers that lets them know if a single occupied car passing by them has the HOV switched on or not, who knows. But for now they're using the techniques that have been mentioned.

I'm not sure if this is done in VA, but in some areas with a flex transponder, a light is displayed on the gantry indicating what was read by the gantry.  So if a police officer is parked on the shoulder downstream from the gantry, the police officer can see as each car passes whether the car was a) no EZ-pass b) regular EZ-Pass or c) EZ-Pass HOV mode.  I believe that each different indication has a different light.  If the (a) light is indicated, the police officer will pursue all the time.  If the (b) light is indicated, the police officer will ignore.  If the (c) light is indicated, the police officer will pursue if he can see that there are not enough occupants in the car.

In San Diego, they allow for HOV drivers to drive the I-15 express lanes for free without a transponder.  There, the police officer will pursue every solo driver unless the Fastrak indicator light comes on.  For some reason, it was determined that doing something similar along the Virginia express lanes (and even the express lanes in the LA area where they incorporate a flexible version of the Fastrak) would be too difficult to enforce the HOV requirements unless they force all drivers to have some type of transponder.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Mapmikey on January 12, 2018, 02:12:49 PM
The VSP have portable scanners that read which transponder is in your car.

They have also returned to occasionally staking out the ends of off ramps to nab violators (thankfully they don’t do this at the end of the lanes themselves much anymore like they were constantly doing during the HOV-only days)
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: cpzilliacus on January 15, 2018, 10:30:35 PM
The VSP have portable scanners that read which transponder is in your car.

They have also returned to occasionally staking out the ends of off ramps to nab violators (thankfully they don’t do this at the end of the lanes themselves much anymore like they were constantly doing during the HOV-only days)

There's also a red line that flashes when you drive under any of those gantries when the transponder is in  HOV mode.  If the trooper does not see enough heads, then a traffic stop will likely result.  If there are enough  people in the car, then the stop is over and the driver is sent on his or her way.
Title: Re: Virginia
Post by: Beltway on May 19, 2018, 10:15:26 PM
No update on the VDOT website news releases yet.

The latest on the HRBT expansion: a fourth lane for the tunnel, one project team pulls its bid
The Virginian-Pilot
May 18, 2018
https://pilotonline.com/news/local/transportation/article_7fcaa2a6-5a19-11e8-9eff-ab11613e206d.html

It’s official: The Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel expansion will widen the tunnel to four lanes instead of three.
Jim Utterback, newly named HRBT project manager, said during a Thursday transportation meeting that the cost difference would be negligible and that the four-lane version would actually be easier to build.
The idea was floated early in the concept design in 2015 but officials decided to go with it earlier this year.
The land sections of I-64 will have three lanes in each direction.
The existing tunnels will be converted to all westbound traffic (toward the Peninsula), and the new tube will take traffic eastbound (to South Hampton Roads).
The “3-4-3 configuration” may alleviate some of the congestion and slowdowns that come with entering the tunnels. The design could increase hourly capacity from 4,700 to 6,300 cars.
During peak summer traffic, more than 100,000 vehicles a day cross the span, according to VDOT.
The bridge-tunnel will keep two free lanes and add one permanent High Occupancy Toll lane and a HOT lane shoulder that can be used during peak congestion.
The expansion, the largest roads project in Virginia history, is estimated to cost more than $3.6 billion by the time construction is finished in 2024.


The article has a diagram that is not very clear, but it looks like the trestles will be widened to 4 lanes plus a full right shoulder.  Implied is that the new tube will have 4 lanes.  The I-64 land sections between I-664 and I-564 will have 6 lanes.

I asked at a CTB meeting and they have a whole funding package arranged and only about 15% of it needs to be funded by tolls.
Title: Re: Re: Virginia
Post by: plain on May 19, 2018, 11:05:31 PM
No update on the VDOT website news releases yet.

The latest on the HRBT expansion: a fourth lane for the tunnel, one project team pulls its bid
The Virginian-Pilot
May 18, 2018
https://pilotonline.com/news/local/transportation/article_7fcaa2a6-5a19-11e8-9eff-ab11613e206d.html

It’s official: The Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel expansion will widen the tunnel to four lanes instead of three.
Jim Utterback, newly named HRBT project manager, said during a Thursday transportation meeting that the cost difference would be negligible and that the four-lane version would actually be easier to build.
The idea was floated early in the concept design in 2015 but officials decided to go with it earlier this year.
The land sections of I-64 will have three lanes in each direction.
The existing tunnels will be converted to all westbound traffic (toward the Peninsula), and the new tube will take traffic eastbound (to South Hampton Roads).
The “3-4-3 configuration” may alleviate some of the congestion and slowdowns that come with entering the tunnels. The design could increase hourly capacity from 4,700 to 6,300 cars.
During peak summer traffic, more than 100,000 vehicles a day cross the span, according to VDOT.
The bridge-tunnel will keep two free lanes and add one permanent High Occupancy Toll lane and a HOT lane shoulder that can be used during peak congestion.
The expansion, the largest roads project in Virginia history, is estimated to cost more than $3.6 billion by the time construction is finished in 2024.


The article has a diagram that is not very clear, but it looks like the trestles will be widened to 4 lanes plus a full right shoulder.  Implied is that the new tube will have 4 lanes.  The I-64 land sections between I-664 and I-564 will have 6 lanes.

I asked at a CTB meeting and they have a whole funding package arranged and only about 15% of it needs to be funded by tolls.

Since WB traffic will also use the existing EB tube,  it will help tremendously with the over height truck situation WB.

I like the added lane in the tunnel and on the bridges. Even though the land portion will be 6 lanes, who cares?!! The more capacity across the harbor, the better!
Title: Re: Re: Virginia
Post by: Beltway on May 19, 2018, 11:35:15 PM
HRBT expansion
….
Since WB traffic will also use the existing EB tube,  it will help tremendously with the over height truck situation WB.
I like the added lane in the tunnel and on the bridges. Even though the land portion will be 6 lanes, who cares?!! The more capacity across the harbor, the better!

But the WB HOT lanes would be in the newer tube (existing EB tube), and the WB general purpose lanes would be in the older tube (existing WB tube).  That means that the WB trucks would be in the tube with 12 inches less clearance than the tube where trucks could be excluded, and presumably with at least 12 inches less clearance than the to-be-constructed new EB tube.  The height differential is what confuses some truckers.

It could be another VDOT stealth widening project, if they do the 6-lane widening on the land sections and install a 12-foot left shoulder built to full depth pavement standards that could be used for a 4th lane in the future.  The Willoughby Spit Bridge is a mile long and they could deck in the whole section between the two bridges and have width for future 8 lanes.
Title: Re: Re: Virginia
Post by: plain on May 20, 2018, 09:06:03 PM
HRBT expansion
….
Since WB traffic will also use the existing EB tube,  it will help tremendously with the over height truck situation WB.
I like the added lane in the tunnel and on the bridges. Even though the land portion will be 6 lanes, who cares?!! The more capacity across the harbor, the better!

But the WB HOT lanes would be in the newer tube (existing EB tube), and the WB general purpose lanes would be in the older tube (existing WB tube).  That means that the WB trucks would be in the tube with 12 inches less clearance than the tube where trucks could be excluded, and presumably with at least 12 inches less clearance than the to-be-constructed new EB tube.  The height differential is what confuses some truckers.

It could be another VDOT stealth widening project, if they do the 6-lane widening on the land sections and install a 12-foot left shoulder built to full depth pavement standards that could be used for a 4th lane in the future.  The Willoughby Spit Bridge is a mile long and they could deck in the whole section between the two bridges and have width for future 8 lanes.

I didn't think about the fact that the HOT tunnel would be on the existing EB side, you're right, that problem will still exist.

As for creating an option for future expansion to 8 lanes on the land portions, that would be great too!!!!! Of course only if that's included in the $3.6 billion price tag. The approach from Norfolk is already expensive enough on top of the actual HBRT
Title: Re: Re: Virginia
Post by: Beltway on May 20, 2018, 09:13:33 PM
I didn't think about the fact that the HOT tunnel would be on the existing EB side, you're right, that problem will still exist.
As for creating an option for future expansion to 8 lanes on the land portions, that would be great too!!!!! Of course only if that's included in the $3.6 billion price tag. The approach from Norfolk is already expensive enough on top of the actual HBRT

The I-64/I-564 interchange will need some major upgrades, to handle the three I-64 lanes each way thru the interchange area.  Presumably that is in the $3.6 billion.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on June 19, 2018, 11:13:13 PM
At the monthly CTB meeting today, Jim Utterback, the HRBT project manager gave a detailed status report and overview of the project.

He showed a typical section of the current westbound tube, and the plan is to fully renovate and remove the ceiling and install jet fans (both existing tubes in fact).  My concern about the vertical clearance is unfounded, as the plan is to add at least 12 inches.

The new bridge-tunnel will have 4 lanes and will be utilized for eastbound traffic.  The existing bridge-tunnels will be utilized for westbound traffic.

All existing marine bridges are over 40 years old and the plan is to replace them with bridges that are higher above water.  This includes the Willoughby Spit bridges to be replaced with an 8-lane bridge.

Tunnel renovations and bridge replacements are part of what makes this project so expensive to construct.

Only about 8% of the funding is toll financed.  A large chunk is from local taxes.  So they are able to fund this project with the only tolls being on the HOT lanes.  Four general purpose lanes will still be toll-free.

I posted the following on June 8th in the thread "U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge"
Quote
That is the current westbound tube.  The new bridge-tunnel would be to the west, and both existing tubes would carry traffic westbound.  That would mean that the westbound general purpose lanes would be in the tube with the lower clearance, and the westbound HOT lanes would be in the tube with the higher clearance.  IOW westbound trucks would still be in the tube with the lower clearance.   
Unless VDOT realized what's going on and allowed them through the HOT tube.
That would mean signs telling their drivers to note their height and if more than 13.5 feet then to get in the left lane and to take the inner tube.  So there would be large truck weaving movements both approaching and leaving the tube.   Would be disruptive to traffic when the general purpose lanes are congested and moving slowly.  Seems like lot to ask of certain truck drivers who already aren't able to properly manage the height restrictions of their vehicle, and if they stay in the general purpose lanes then we still have the current problem.
This is one of the reasons why I opposed this project and wanted to see the money put to the I-564 extension instead.  All-modern height clearances on I-564 and I-664.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on June 19, 2018, 11:22:52 PM
Hampton Roads Bridge Tunnel Expansion Project Update to Commonwealth Transportation Board June 19, 2018
http://www.ctb.virginia.gov/resources/2018/june/pres/1_hampton_road_bridge_tunnell_briefing.pdf

During the pavements condition / bridges condition item presented at CTB meeting, it was mentioned that all new Interstate highway bridges are (since 2007) being built to a 91,000 lbs large truck standard.  Older bridges were built to a 72,000 lb or 80,000 lb standard depending on when built.  Even though it may be awhile before a corridor segment is all modern bridge standard, any new replacement bridge is being built to the 91,000 lb standard which also includes a much higher volume of such vehicles.

So this project would not only increase capacity but also bring the pre-existing infrastructure up to modern Interstate standards.  The newest of the existing marine bridges would be 48 years old in 2024, and there are 6 bridges totaling 6.6 miles.

Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Jmiles32 on June 21, 2018, 06:02:02 PM
It will be interesting to see how exactly the future HOT lane in each direction north of the I-564 interchange will merge into the current reversible HOT lanes south of the interchange. Will it be similar to the current northern terminus of the I-395 reversible HOV lanes near the Pentagon or be different? There will also be new access to I-564 from the HOT lanes.
http://www.dailypress.com/news/traffic/dp-nws-hrbt-expansion-environment-meeting-20180620-htmlstory.html
Quote
The whole road has gotten 8 feet wider,” Smizik said. “And also with HOT lanes, when you get down to the eastern end at I-564, we're proposing new ramps to have a direct connection from the HOT lanes to I-564.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on June 26, 2018, 09:10:46 PM
It will be interesting to see how exactly the future HOT lane in each direction north of the I-564 interchange will merge into the current reversible HOT lanes south of the interchange. Will it be similar to the current northern terminus of the I-395 reversible HOV lanes near the Pentagon or be different? There will also be new access to I-564 from the HOT lanes.

Per aerial map review, I can see ways to do that within existing right-of-way, but with substantial lengths of bridges on ramps, flyovers if you will.   A major expansion of the I-64/I-564 interchange may be needed, and may already be part of the $3.66 billion figure for the whole HRBT Expansion Project.

Per the project PDF above --

Three scope options included in Draft RFP:
• Direct connect ramps from I-64 HOT to I-564
• Increase height clearance at the existing WB Tunnel
• Replace existing marine approach bridges

Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: froggie on June 27, 2018, 04:29:38 PM
I read some of the revised EA.  They mentioned that they are still studying options for connecting the I-64 HOT lanes to I-564.  No alternatives were shown.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on June 27, 2018, 04:50:12 PM
I read some of the revised EA.  They mentioned that they are still studying options for connecting the I-64 HOT lanes to I-564.  No alternatives were shown.

https://www.google.com/maps/@36.9187547,-76.2708403,727m/data=!3m1!1e3

A 3-way freeway-to-freeway semi-directional interchange with local ramps and ramp connections between the I-64 reversible roadway to the I-64 general purpose lanes and the I-564 HOV lanes.

A confined area when it comes to making that new connection.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Vagator on August 23, 2018, 10:41:40 AM
http://www.dailypress.com/news/dp-news-vdot-bridge-tunnel-20180816-story.html (http://www.dailypress.com/news/dp-news-vdot-bridge-tunnel-20180816-story.html)

Hello guys. My first post. Don't be too harsh on me.

Latest from VDOT. The HRBT expansion will be 4 HOT Lanes west of the current Eastbound Lanes.  Am I crazy, but I don't see how this will fit on in the current right of way on the Hampton side? I also find interesting that they supposedly want to start the HOT lane entrance near the Settlers Landing Road off-ramp. I would have thought the HOT entrance would be near the 664 interchange so people would pay for the privilege to bypass all the traffic heading to the tunnel. Are people going to sit in traffic for 10-20 minutes during to summer to pay for HOT Lanes near Settlers Landing Road? Just a thought.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on August 23, 2018, 12:42:18 PM
Hello guys. My first post. Don't be too harsh on me.
Latest from VDOT. The HRBT expansion will be 4 HOT Lanes west of the current Eastbound Lanes.  Am I crazy, but I don't see how this will fit on in the current right of way on the Hampton side? I also find interesting that they supposedly want to start the HOT lane entrance near the Settlers Landing Road off-ramp. I would have thought the HOT entrance would be near the 664 interchange so people would pay for the privilege to bypass all the traffic heading to the tunnel. Are people going to sit in traffic for 10-20 minutes during to summer to pay for HOT Lanes near Settlers Landing Road? Just a thought.

Eight lanes on I-64 between Mallory Street and 4th View Street, basically the HRBT and Willoughby Bay Bridge and approaches.  Replacement of existing marine approach bridges on HRBT and WBB.  Increase the vertical clearance in the westbound tunnel.

No widening of I-64 between I-664 and Mallory Street.  Median I-64 widening to 6 lanes between 4th View Street and I-564.  Those would be widened on the outside of the roadways to 8 lanes at some undetermined time in the future.  Major future upgrade of I-64/I-564 interchange.


Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Thing 342 on August 23, 2018, 12:52:38 PM
Pretty sure that any widening west of Settler's Landing past the existing 6 lanes would require a replacement of the Hampton River Bridge, which I can't imagine being cheap to do.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on August 23, 2018, 05:10:17 PM
Pretty sure that any widening west of Settler's Landing past the existing 6 lanes would require a replacement of the Hampton River Bridge, which I can't imagine being cheap to do.

I-64 Between I-664 and Mallory Street

The bridges look like they can be widened but indeed that would be expensive.  Basically they need to widen the land roadways 20 feet on each side (add 12 foot lane, add 2 feet to right shoulder, add 6 feet to left shoulder, plus rebuild the roadside drainage systems.  With all those creeks that I-64 passes over and the houses near the highway, there will be considerable human and natural environmental impacts to assess and mitigate.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Vagator on August 24, 2018, 11:59:10 AM
Pretty sure that any widening west of Settler's Landing past the existing 6 lanes would require a replacement of the Hampton River Bridge, which I can't imagine being cheap to do.

I-64 Between I-664 and Mallory Street

The bridges look like they can be widened but indeed that would be expensive.  Basically they need to widen the land roadways 20 feet on each side (add 12 foot lane, add 2 feet to right shoulder, add 6 feet to left shoulder, plus rebuild the roadside drainage systems.  With all those creeks that I-64 passes over and the houses near the highway, there will be considerable human and natural environmental impacts to assess and mitigate.

You are right. Even with the HOT Lanes starting at Settlers Landing,  no way I take it over the MMBT considering the bottleneck you have to go through to get to them. They should have just built a third crossing.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on August 24, 2018, 12:35:59 PM
The 8-lane HRBT and approaches will have one HOT lane each way.  Just won't be continuous with the existing I-64 HOT lanes until the aforementioned future 8-lane widening takes place.

I too favored the 2000 decision to build the third crossing (I-564 extension and I-664 expansion), which would have made that the busiest crossing and left the HRBT with its current 4 lanes and managable traffic levels.

One of the things that has changed since 2000 is the age of the marine approach bridges on the HRBT and Willoughby Bay Bridge, now ranging from 42 to 61 years old.  Enough wear and tear and salt spray deterioration that VDOT sees the need to replace all of them.  Plus rebuild the westbound tunnel to provide the same roadway vertical clearance as the newer eastbound tunnel.  Hard to do outside of an expansion project that can carry the traffic on the new bridges and tunnels while the old are rebuilt.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on September 18, 2018, 09:43:54 PM
Latest updates per the CTB --

Hampton Roads Bridge Tunnel Expansion Project
Major Business Terms
to Commonwealth Transportation Board, Sept 17, 2018
http://www.ctb.virginia.gov/resources/2018/sept/pres/2_hrbt.pdf

Execute Comprehensive Agreement ....……….……….. Mar 2019
Contractor LNTP (Limited Notice(s) to Proceed) ..... Mar 2019
Project Complete ............................................... Nov 2025
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: LM117 on November 16, 2018, 01:19:03 PM
New toll rates on the CBBT to take effect January 1.

http://www.cbbt.com/travel-information/toll-schedule/ (http://www.cbbt.com/travel-information/toll-schedule/)
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Thing 342 on November 16, 2018, 10:08:48 PM
New toll rates on the CBBT to take effect January 1.

http://www.cbbt.com/travel-information/toll-schedule/ (http://www.cbbt.com/travel-information/toll-schedule/)
TLDR: Tolls for cars increasing to $18 each way during peak periods (Friday to Sunday, May thru Sept), $14 for non-peak. Return trips within 24h are $2 for peak periods, $6 otherwise (so a round trip will always be $20 regardless of period, if I'm reading it correctly)
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: sprjus4 on January 11, 2019, 06:26:54 PM
At the monthly CTB meeting today, Jim Utterback, the HRBT project manager gave a detailed status report and overview of the project.

He showed a typical section of the current westbound tube, and the plan is to fully renovate and remove the ceiling and install jet fans (both existing tubes in fact).  My concern about the vertical clearance is unfounded, as the plan is to add at least 12 inches.

The new bridge-tunnel will have 4 lanes and will be utilized for eastbound traffic.  The existing bridge-tunnels will be utilized for westbound traffic.

All existing marine bridges are over 40 years old and the plan is to replace them with bridges that are higher above water.  This includes the Willoughby Spit bridges to be replaced with an 8-lane bridge.

Tunnel renovations and bridge replacements are part of what makes this project so expensive to construct.

Only about 8% of the funding is toll financed.  A large chunk is from local taxes.  So they are able to fund this project with the only tolls being on the HOT lanes.  Four general purpose lanes will still be toll-free.
Just reading this forum now... trying to understand this.

So they would replace the Willoughby Spit bridge with a one single eight-lane bridge with a barrier in the median? Would the HRBT bridges also be replaced to have one single eight-lane bridge with a barrier in the median, or two bridges with four lanes on each? Or still this three bridges confusing stuff?
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on January 11, 2019, 10:43:33 PM
So they would replace the Willoughby Spit bridge with a one single eight-lane bridge with a barrier in the median? Would the HRBT bridges also be replaced to have one single eight-lane bridge with a barrier in the median, or two bridges with four lanes on each? Or still this three bridges confusing stuff?

I don't think the design has been finalized yet, but based on my basic design knowledge, the Willoughby Bay Bridge could either be one 8-lane bridge or two 4-lane bridges, the existing Hampton Roads bridges are too far apart to be replaced by a single bridge, the new tunnels will probably be twin 2-lane bored tunnels about 50 feet apart, and the new Hampton Roads bridge will probably be a 4-lane bridge.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: sprjus4 on January 11, 2019, 11:02:38 PM
So they would replace the Willoughby Spit bridge with a one single eight-lane bridge with a barrier in the median? Would the HRBT bridges also be replaced to have one single eight-lane bridge with a barrier in the median, or two bridges with four lanes on each? Or still this three bridges confusing stuff?

I don't think the design has been finalized yet, but based on my basic design knowledge, the Willoughby Bay Bridge could either be one 8-lane bridge or two 4-lane bridges, the existing Hampton Roads bridges are too far apart to be replaced by a single bridge, the new tunnels will probably be twin 2-lane bored tunnels about 50 feet apart, and the new Hampton Roads bridge will probably be a 4-lane bridge.
Yeah, if they are going to replace the bridges, they should be smart about it - like said build all lanes in one direction on one bridge, not split like originally proposed with 3 separate bridges. I think they could do with one 4 lane tunnel, but there could be issues with that. I think the overall "build" if the corridor is ever fully 8-laned should be to have 3 GP + 1 HO/T in each direction, similar to the other sections of I-64 with 3 GP + 1 HOV lane, or 3 GP + 2 Reversible HOV lanes. Likely though, it will be 2 GP + 2 HO/T creating an inconsistency with the rest of the corridor, just like proposed on the High Rise Bridge. IMHO, doing it that way still creates congestion where lanes go from 3 to 2 on the GP, simply to add lanes to the HO/T section. It seems like a backup purposely created just to get more people to pay the toll to "bypass" the congestion that was created w/ poor design, once the final build is completed.

Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on January 11, 2019, 11:35:08 PM
Yeah, if they are going to replace the bridges, they should be smart about it - like said build all lanes in one direction on one bridge, not split like originally proposed with 3 separate bridges. I think they could do with one 4 lane tunnel, but there could be issues with that. I think the overall "build" if the corridor is ever fully 8-laned should be to have 3 GP + 1 HO/T in each direction, similar to the other sections of I-64 with 3 GP + 1 HOV lane, or 3 GP + 2 Reversible HOV lanes. Likely though, it will be 2 GP + 2 HO/T creating an inconsistency with the rest of the corridor, just like proposed on the High Rise Bridge. IMHO, doing it that way still creates congestion where lanes go from 3 to 2 on the GP, simply to add lanes to the HO/T section. It seems like a backup purposely created just to get more people to pay the toll to "bypass" the congestion that was created w/ poor design, once the final build is completed.

Widening I-64 to 8 lanes between HRBT and I-664 will have major environmental impacts, and will take a separate NEPA EIS/location process to work that out.   Likewise with outside widening between 4th View Street and I-564 (inside 3rd lane widening will be in the current project).  Likewise with the ultimate improvement to the I-64/I-564 interchange.

The final format for GP and HOT lanes has not been determined.  Most likely it will be 3+1 each way thruout the region excepting the 3-2-3 format between I-564 and I-264.

The new High Rise Bridge will be an interim measure, because a second stage will replace the existing bridge with a wider fixed high-level bridge to match the bridge now under construction.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: sprjus4 on January 11, 2019, 11:46:04 PM
Yeah, if they are going to replace the bridges, they should be smart about it - like said build all lanes in one direction on one bridge, not split like originally proposed with 3 separate bridges. I think they could do with one 4 lane tunnel, but there could be issues with that. I think the overall "build" if the corridor is ever fully 8-laned should be to have 3 GP + 1 HO/T in each direction, similar to the other sections of I-64 with 3 GP + 1 HOV lane, or 3 GP + 2 Reversible HOV lanes. Likely though, it will be 2 GP + 2 HO/T creating an inconsistency with the rest of the corridor, just like proposed on the High Rise Bridge. IMHO, doing it that way still creates congestion where lanes go from 3 to 2 on the GP, simply to add lanes to the HO/T section. It seems like a backup purposely created just to get more people to pay the toll to "bypass" the congestion that was created w/ poor design, once the final build is completed.

Widening I-64 to 8 lanes between HRBT and I-664 will have major environmental impacts, and will take a separate NEPA EIS/location process to work that out.   Likewise with outside widening between 4th View Street and I-564 (inside 3rd lane widening will be in the current project).  Likewise with the ultimate improvement to the I-64/I-564 interchange.

The final format for GP and HOT lanes has not been determined.  Most likely it will be 3+1 each way thruout the region excepting the 3-2-3 format between I-564 and I-264.

The new High Rise Bridge will be an interim measure, because a second stage will replace the existing bridge with a wider fixed high-level bridge to match the bridge now under construction.
My comment about the HO/T lanes is that for the High Rise Bridge they want 2 HO/T lanes + 2 GP lanes in each direction as opposed to 1 HO/T lane + 3 GP lanes when they build Phase #2. I'm aware of the whole buildout with the two phases, etc. for the High Rise corridor.

And this project between I-564 and I-664 (I don't know how they plan on doing this on the Hampton side) will have 1 full time HO/T lane in each direction + 1 HO/T shoulder during rush hour. It was revised a few months back to include this. So during rush hour, the HRBT corridor will actually have 8 functioning lanes when it opens in 2024, with 2 HOT lanes + 2 GP.

To sum up what the whole "concept" that regional planners want, here it is -
2 GP + 2 HO/T between I-664 (Bowers Hill) and I-464
3 GP + 1 HO/T between I-464 and I-264
3 GP + 2 HO/T reversible between I-264 and I-564
2 GP + 2 HO/T between I-564 and I-664 (Hampton)

The better concept IMHO is -
3 GP + 1 HO/T between I-664 (Bowers Hill) and I-264
3 GP + 2 HO/T reversible between I-264 and I-564
3 GP + 1 HO/T between I-564 and I-664 (Hampton)

You see the inconsistency with the officially proposed idea compared to the constant 3 GP lanes in my idea?
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on January 12, 2019, 12:09:03 AM
You see the inconsistency with the officially proposed idea compared to the constant 3 GP lanes in my idea?

There is no "officially proposed idea" for the whole corridor because two segments have not even been officially studied (as in NEPA process) for 8-laning yet, HRBT to I-664 Hampton, and 4th View to I-564; they will have 3 lanes each way until some future widening project that like I said has not been officially determined.

Whether a 4-lane roadway has 3 GP and one HOT, or 2 GP and 2 HOT, is just a matter of how the lines are painted and what the overhead signs say.  The cost of changing that is trivial compared to the cost of building these highways.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: sprjus4 on January 12, 2019, 12:16:16 AM
You see the inconsistency with the officially proposed idea compared to the constant 3 GP lanes in my idea?

There is no "officially proposed idea" for the whole corridor because two segments have not even been officially studied (as in NEPA process) for 8-laning yet, HRBT to I-664 Hampton, and 4th View to I-564; they will have 3 lanes each way until some future widening project that like I said has not been officially determined.

Whether a 4-lane roadway has 3 GP and one HOT, or 2 GP and 2 HOT, is just a matter of how the lines are painted and what the overhead signs say.  The cost of changing that is trivial compared to the cost of building these highways.
For the High Rise Bridge, that is currently the decision for Phase #2, and for the HRBT, I mentioned above they are doing 2 HO/T + 2 GP during peak times. They could've done a 1 HO/T + 3 GP using an outside "shoulder" lane but they chose to make that shoulder lane an additional HO/T.

And you are right, these easily could change. But right now, that's currently the decision made.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on January 12, 2019, 12:43:46 AM
For the High Rise Bridge, that is currently the decision for Phase #2, and for the HRBT, I mentioned above they are doing 2 HO/T + 2 GP during peak times. They could've done a 1 HO/T + 3 GP using an outside "shoulder" lane but they chose to make that shoulder lane an additional HO/T.
And you are right, these easily could change. But right now, that's currently the decision made.

HRBT will be a four-tube tunnel with 2 lanes in each tube.  I could see a difficulty in running one HOT and one GP in a tube as there would be no passing allowed.

I-64 Southside Widening and High Rise Bridge financial plan is not really clear about the configuration and the wording seems to imply one HOT lane each way added in each phase.  I don't think that is correct.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on February 19, 2019, 05:04:55 PM
Hampton Roads Bridge Tunnel Expansion Project Procurement Update to Commonwealth Transportation Board Feb 19, 2019
http://www.ctb.virginia.gov/resources/2019/feb/pres/1_hrbt.pdf

Excerpts:

Scope of HRBT Expansion Project
-- Settlers Landing in Hampton to I-564 Norfolk (10 Miles)
-- I-64 improvements include 6 lanes of highway + drivable shoulder and construction of 4 lane bridge/tunnel
-- New HRBT tunnels will serve Eastbound traffic
-- Existing HRBT tunnels will serve Westbound traffic
-- Design-Build Contract Value:  $3.3B
-- VDOT will pay for South Island Trestle Bridge Replacement Work (180 days option to identify funding sources)
-- Execute Comprehensive Agreement NLT (no later than):  Apr 15, 2019
-- Contractor LNTP (Limited Notice to Proceed):  Apr 2019
-- Project Complete:  Nov 2025

. . . . . . . .

I talked to the Chief Engineer and asked for some design details.

HRBT will be 8 lanes on 4 separate 2-lane roadways/tubes.
New tunnels will be bored with TBM.
HRBT existing marine bridges will be replaced.
Willoughby Bay bridges will be widened to 8 lanes.
The "driveable shoulder" will be a 12-foot left lane of full-depth pavement.
Two general purpose lanes each way between Mallory Street and I-564.
Two HOT lanes each way between Mallory Street and I-564, seamlessly connecting with 2-lane reversible roadway.
No major rehab of existing tunnels.  No addressing of increase of vertical clearance in westbound tube. (*)
No major upgrade of I-564 interchange. (*)
Mallory Street to I-664 widening will be a future project not yet studied.

(*) At least not in this particular project.
 
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: sprjus4 on February 19, 2019, 05:30:35 PM
Hampton Roads Bridge Tunnel Expansion Project Procurement Update to Commonwealth Transportation Board Feb 19, 2019
http://www.ctb.virginia.gov/resources/2019/feb/pres/1_hrbt.pdf

Excerpts:

Scope of HRBT Expansion Project
-- Settlers Landing in Hampton to I-564 Norfolk (10 Miles)
-- I-64 improvements include 6 lanes of highway + drivable shoulder and construction of 4 lane bridge/tunnel
-- New HRBT tunnels will serve Eastbound traffic
-- Existing HRBT tunnels will serve Westbound traffic
-- Design-Build Contract Value:  $3.3B
-- VDOT will pay for South Island Trestle Bridge Replacement Work (180 days option to identify funding sources)
-- Execute Comprehensive Agreement NLT (no later than):  Apr 15, 2019
-- Contractor LNTP (Limited Notice to Proceed):  Apr 2019
-- Project Complete:  Nov 2025

. . . . . . . .

I talked to the Chief Engineer and asked for some design details.

HRBT will be 8 lanes on 4 separate 2-lane roadways/tubes.
New tunnels will be bored with TBM.
HRBT existing marine bridges will be replaced.
Willoughby Bay bridges will be widened to 8 lanes.
The "driveable shoulder" will be a 12-foot left lane of full-depth pavement.
Two general purpose lanes each way between Mallory Street and I-564.
Two HOT lanes each way between Mallory Street and I-564, seamlessly connecting with 2-lane reversible roadway.
No major rehab of existing tunnels.  No addressing of increase of vertical clearance in westbound tube. (*)
No major upgrade of I-564 interchange. (*)
Mallory Street to I-664 widening will be a future project not yet studied.

(*) At least not in this particular project.
 
Do they plan on releasing technical drawings / schematics of the project?

Interesting about the westbound tube... so the HO/T lanes without trucks will have a higher clearance than the GP lanes with trucks... I don't see why the HO/T shoulder couldn't be a full time HO/T lane, or hell, if they're playing the shoulder game, why not give the GP lanes a shoulder lane as well? It would involve increasing the cross-section on the outside from a 12 foot shoulder to 14 foot or 16 foot, but worth it IMHO. The only issue is the tunnel - it'd have to be 3-lanes wide, instead of two, but I guess they didn't consider this as an option, and again, fled to more HO/T lanes. It would surely help with traffic congestion by adding another GP lane as well in the long run, but I guess it's too late. This could bite in 20 years.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: wriddle082 on January 07, 2020, 09:04:13 PM
So the new High Rise Bridge project, when completed, will only have tolls for the HO/T lanes?  Meaning it will still offer free lanes, unlike the Downtown and Midtown Tunnels and Jordan and Veterans Memorial Bridges?

I’m working in Norfolk again this week, staying on the water in Virginia Beach, and crossed the High Rise last night around 7:30 despite Waze telling me to take the Downtown Tunnel for a $1.80 toll.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: Beltway on January 07, 2020, 09:15:29 PM
So the new High Rise Bridge project, when completed, will only have tolls for the HO/T lanes?  Meaning it will still offer free lanes, unlike the Downtown and Midtown Tunnels and Jordan and Veterans Memorial Bridges?
If they open as HOT and not HOV, they will be tolled.

Two general purpose lanes each way will remain toll-free.

I have been seeing that project on a near-weekly basis, and it is steadily coming together.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: sprjus4 on January 07, 2020, 09:31:13 PM
So the new High Rise Bridge project, when completed, will only have tolls for the HO/T lanes?  Meaning it will still offer free lanes, unlike the Downtown and Midtown Tunnels and Jordan and Veterans Memorial Bridges?
If they open as HOT and not HOV, they will be tolled.

Two general purpose lanes each way will remain toll-free.

I have been seeing that project on a near-weekly basis, and it is steadily coming together.
As it’s planned now, the lanes will only be HO/T during peak hours. Like the rest of the area HOV & HO/T lanes, they will be open to all traffic free of charge during off peak hours, weekends, and holidays, though will still be barrier separated.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: wriddle082 on January 07, 2020, 09:37:22 PM
So the new High Rise Bridge project, when completed, will only have tolls for the HO/T lanes?  Meaning it will still offer free lanes, unlike the Downtown and Midtown Tunnels and Jordan and Veterans Memorial Bridges?
If they open as HOT and not HOV, they will be tolled.

Two general purpose lanes each way will remain toll-free.

I have been seeing that project on a near-weekly basis, and it is steadily coming together.

Indeed, I passed through last month also and I think it’s made progress since then.  I would suspect that beams will start to be laid across the finished piers in the very near future.

Will probably be making more semi-regular trips to Norfolk for work in the future, since one particular customer site has been moved from our NE installation manager to our SE installation manager, due to customer reps preferring mine and my co-worker’s work and the closest person in the NE installation group perpetually tied up with work in MD.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: 74/171FAN on January 08, 2020, 07:11:35 AM
So the new High Rise Bridge project, when completed, will only have tolls for the HO/T lanes?  Meaning it will still offer free lanes, unlike the Downtown and Midtown Tunnels and Jordan and Veterans Memorial Bridges?
If they open as HOT and not HOV, they will be tolled.

Two general purpose lanes each way will remain toll-free.

I have been seeing that project on a near-weekly basis, and it is steadily coming together.
As it’s planned now, the lanes will only be HO/T during peak hours. Like the rest of the area HOV & HO/T lanes, they will be open to all traffic free of charge during off peak hours, weekends, and holidays, though will still be barrier separated.

I had not been keeping close eyes on this, but it seems to me that they must not want to charge those traveling to the Outer Banks.  (even though VA 168 gets them already)
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: sprjus4 on January 08, 2020, 07:48:04 AM
So the new High Rise Bridge project, when completed, will only have tolls for the HO/T lanes?  Meaning it will still offer free lanes, unlike the Downtown and Midtown Tunnels and Jordan and Veterans Memorial Bridges?
If they open as HOT and not HOV, they will be tolled.

Two general purpose lanes each way will remain toll-free.

I have been seeing that project on a near-weekly basis, and it is steadily coming together.
As it’s planned now, the lanes will only be HO/T during peak hours. Like the rest of the area HOV & HO/T lanes, they will be open to all traffic free of charge during off peak hours, weekends, and holidays, though will still be barrier separated.

I had not been keeping close eyes on this, but it seems to me that they must not want to charge those traveling to the Outer Banks.  (even though VA 168 gets them already)
One of the potential options was looking at “maximizing revenue on peak weekends”, so there’s is a chance peak weekend HO/T tolling may be implemented later on, but as of now it is not a thing.

That $8 peak weekend toll on the Expressway definitely grabs the tourists, at least the ones who aren’t smart enough to take parallel 6-mile Battlefield Blvd, though it’s only going to the city of Chesapeake and helping to repay debt on the Expressway and Dominion Blvd. The two toll roads merged into one operation and revenue collected on both facilities goes to repay debt on the two. There’s no profit made from the toll road, at least that’s publicly announced.
Title: Re: Hampton Roads, Va. area toll crossings and toll roads
Post by: sprjus4 on January 08, 2020, 05:04:48 PM
An update was provided to the TTAC today on the proposed Segment 2 of the HO/T lane network stretching between I-264 and I-464.

The current plan calls for converting the existing HOV lane each way into HO/T by installing toll gantries, assosaiated signage, and a 4 foot barrier.

The project is slated to cost $32 million.

Construction could begin by July 2020 and be open to traffic by December 2021, around the time the I-64 High Rise Bridge HO/T lanes will be opened between I-464 and Bowers Hill. This would complete a substantial portion of the proposed network by the end of 2021, providing continuous lanes for 23 miles.

https://www.hrtpo.org/uploads/docs/P13-Regional_Express_Lanes_Network_Update.pdf



Here are some issues I see with this project. In my opinion, it's being done on the cheap, and not being fully built out. I believe ultimately there needs to be 2 lanes each way utilizing there "part time shoulder" concept (IMO, I say nix the shoulder and just make it a full time HO/T lane on all the areas they are proposing this, many urban areas have this configuration with no issues). Secondly, direct connectors between I-64 East (towards Bowers Hill) to VA-168 / US-17 South, and between VA-168 North and I-64 East are needed. These are two major movements, and the interchange is already substandard as it is. If the current HO/T lanes are any indication with high usage, there will be heavy traffic loads dumping out of the HO/T lanes 1-2 miles prior to the Oak Grove Interchange trying to weave 3-4 lanes over just to make the exit, and the same will be true people getting on I-64 East then trying to get over 2-3 lanes to enter the HO/T lanes. Then there's the issue that the interchange already congests heading from I-64 East to VA-168 / US-17 South for 1-2 miles, so you dump them into congestion, usually with the left lanes flowing and the right lanes parked because of the narrow, substandard weaving cloverleaf bound to VA-168 / US-17 South. They are underestimating the traffic load that will use these lanes during peak hours, and ultimately I feel it's just going to make congestion even worse than it is at the Oak Grove Interchange, and the HO/T lanes will be packed with the heavy load using the lanes down to 1 lane for 7 miles.

They are reconstructing the entire freeway on the Hampton side to accommodate 2 HO/T lanes each way, and are proposing direct connectors at I-564. The same needs to hold true for Segment 2 as well. Delay the project for a couple of years, put it through a NEPA study as the other phases involving major construction are getting, and then come back with a high-capacity project that will actually work.