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Author Topic: Open houses for tolling I-80 across Wyoming  (Read 50816 times)

NE2

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Re: Open houses for tolling I-80 across Wyoming
« Reply #100 on: March 27, 2021, 02:39:22 PM »

US-6 between Provo/I-15 and Green River/I-70[...]that's the main gateway between Salt Lake and Denver.
Bullshit.
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Re: Open houses for tolling I-80 across Wyoming
« Reply #101 on: March 29, 2021, 10:35:47 PM »

US-6 between Provo/I-15 and Green River/I-70[...]that's the main gateway between Salt Lake and Denver.
Bullshit.
Then what is the main gateway?
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US 89

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Re: Open houses for tolling I-80 across Wyoming
« Reply #102 on: March 29, 2021, 10:47:01 PM »

US-6 between Provo/I-15 and Green River/I-70[...]that's the main gateway between Salt Lake and Denver.
Bullshit.
Then what is the main gateway?

I have posted about this in probably three other threads: I-80. From city center to city center, I-25 to US 287 to I-80 is 15 minutes and 7 miles shorter than I-70 to US 6 to I-15. Obviously these numbers will vary a bit depending on exactly where in either metro your origin and destination are, but the point stands.

I-80, while not particularly scenic, is a much flatter route and is far better suited for truck traffic under normal conditions. I-70 has two values as a SLC-Denver route: 1) as a slightly longer, far more scenic route for recreational travelers and 2) as an alternate for when it's blizzarding in Wyoming and I-80 is closed. Believe it or not, despite its ski traffic and high mountain passes 70 is probably a more reliable route over the continental divide than 80 for precisely this reason.

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Re: Open houses for tolling I-80 across Wyoming
« Reply #103 on: March 29, 2021, 10:49:53 PM »

US-6 between Provo/I-15 and Green River/I-70[...]that's the main gateway between Salt Lake and Denver.
Bullshit.
Then what is the main gateway?

I have posted about this in probably three other threads: I-80. From city center to city center, I-25 to US 287 to I-80 is 15 minutes and 7 miles shorter than I-70 to US 6 to I-15. Obviously these numbers will vary a bit depending on exactly where in either metro your origin and destination are, but the point stands.

I-80, while not particularly scenic, is a much flatter route and is far better suited for truck traffic under normal conditions. I-70 has two values as a SLC-Denver route: 1) as a slightly longer, far more scenic route for recreational travelers and 2) as an alternate for when it's blizzarding in Wyoming and I-80 is closed. Believe it or not, despite its ski traffic and high mountain passes 70 is probably a more reliable route over the continental divide than 80 for precisely this reason.
Why is I-80 more prone to blizzards?
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thenetwork

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Re: Open houses for tolling I-80 across Wyoming
« Reply #104 on: March 29, 2021, 11:50:37 PM »

US-6 between Provo/I-15 and Green River/I-70[...]that's the main gateway between Salt Lake and Denver.
Bullshit.
Then what is the main gateway?

I have posted about this in probably three other threads: I-80. From city center to city center, I-25 to US 287 to I-80 is 15 minutes and 7 miles shorter than I-70 to US 6 to I-15. Obviously these numbers will vary a bit depending on exactly where in either metro your origin and destination are, but the point stands.

I-80, while not particularly scenic, is a much flatter route and is far better suited for truck traffic under normal conditions. I-70 has two values as a SLC-Denver route: 1) as a slightly longer, far more scenic route for recreational travelers and 2) as an alternate for when it's blizzarding in Wyoming and I-80 is closed. Believe it or not, despite its ski traffic and high mountain passes 70 is probably a more reliable route over the continental divide than 80 for precisely this reason.
Why is I-80 more prone to blizzards?

While I cannot speak of the meteorological reasons why it gets so damn windy in Wyoming,, much of South-Central Wyoming (including I-80) is either flat or very-gently rolling hills with not much in the form of trees, buildings, etc... that will block or slow the winds.

And the reason why WyDOT tends to close large swaths of roadway during inclement weather is likely because:

A) The traffic counts per mile vs. Snow maintenance costs per mile is very costly.

B) There is not enough manpower to keep the roads passable when there are near-blizzard conditions.  Instead, they close down the roads and wait until the weather tones down.

There are advance warning signs on US-191 in Utah that will flash when the road is closed in Wyoming at the border.  At least there, the alternate route is UT-44/UT-43/WY-530 which will get you to I-80 Green River, and is less than a 30-minute difference if you take that route to Rock Springs.

However, if you want to get into Wyoming from CO-13 in Colorado, and they close WY-789 at Baggs, you're pretty much screwed if you want to go further north into the state.
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Re: Open houses for tolling I-80 across Wyoming
« Reply #105 on: March 30, 2021, 12:01:34 AM »

While I cannot speak of the meteorological reasons why it gets so damn windy in Wyoming,, much of South-Central Wyoming (including I-80) is either flat or very-gently rolling hills with not much in the form of trees, buildings, etc... that will block or slow the winds.

That is in fact the meteorological reason why - central Colorado has mountains that help block wind. Most of Wyoming does not.

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Re: Open houses for tolling I-80 across Wyoming
« Reply #106 on: March 30, 2021, 12:32:00 AM »

I have posted about this in probably three other threads: I-80. From city center to city center, I-25 to US 287 to I-80 is 15 minutes and 7 miles shorter than I-70 to US 6 to I-15. Obviously these numbers will vary a bit depending on exactly where in either metro your origin and destination are, but the point stands.
While US-287 is a "cutoff", how much of an advantage is following that connection rather than simply I-25 to I-80?

Google Maps shows the route saves a mere 9 minutes, and traverses city streets in Fort Collins and many rural 2 lane segments.

For a long distance trucker or even average motorist, I'd see more advantage of simply sticking with the interstate.
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Re: Open houses for tolling I-80 across Wyoming
« Reply #107 on: March 30, 2021, 12:05:44 PM »


I have posted about this in probably three other threads: I-80. From city center to city center, I-25 to US 287 to I-80 is 15 minutes and 7 miles shorter than I-70 to US 6 to I-15. Obviously these numbers will vary a bit depending on exactly where in either metro your origin and destination are, but the point stands.
While US-287 is a "cutoff", how much of an advantage is following that connection rather than simply I-25 to I-80?

Google Maps shows the route saves a mere 9 minutes, and traverses city streets in Fort Collins and many rural 2 lane segments.

For a long distance trucker or even average motorist, I'd see more advantage of simply sticking with the interstate.

If a traveler is sticking to only Interstates, then they're not taking US-6 to begin with.

Limon (CO) → Salt Lake City (UT)

612 miles = I-70 / I-270 / I-25 / I-80
595 miles = I-70 / I-270 / I-25 / US-287 / I-80

766 miles = I-70 / I-15
684 miles = I-70 / US-50 / I-15
610 miles = I-70 / US-6 / I-15

Going through Wyoming on the all-Interstate route is only two miles longer than using even the shortest of the routes through the Colorado Rockies (using E-740 instead of I-270 would shave off one mile), and its highest elevation is less than 9000 feet.
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JayhawkCO

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Re: Open houses for tolling I-80 across Wyoming
« Reply #108 on: March 30, 2021, 01:01:15 PM »

I have posted about this in probably three other threads: I-80. From city center to city center, I-25 to US 287 to I-80 is 15 minutes and 7 miles shorter than I-70 to US 6 to I-15. Obviously these numbers will vary a bit depending on exactly where in either metro your origin and destination are, but the point stands.
While US-287 is a "cutoff", how much of an advantage is following that connection rather than simply I-25 to I-80?

Google Maps shows the route saves a mere 9 minutes, and traverses city streets in Fort Collins and many rural 2 lane segments.

For a long distance trucker or even average motorist, I'd see more advantage of simply sticking with the interstate.

The city streets in Fort Collins aren't all that bad for a trucker.  It bypasses the heaviest traffic areas (Old Town, College Ave.).  The rural 2-lane section (US287) is probably 50% truck traffic.  It might only save 9 minutes, but it also saves on gas which is obviously a consideration.

More or less, in the summer, going I-80 in Wyoming is faster.  In the winter, despite the mountains seemingly risky for trucks, at least the road doesn't shut down nearly as often (and for as long) in Colorado, so I would think more trucks would go the southern route.

Chris

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Re: Open houses for tolling I-80 across Wyoming
« Reply #109 on: March 30, 2021, 04:33:05 PM »

Another reason I-80 can be helpful along with being flatter with little to no steep grades, is that west of Rawlins the speed limit raises up to 80mph, except in bad weather.
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Re: Open houses for tolling I-80 across Wyoming
« Reply #110 on: March 30, 2021, 04:36:18 PM »

As for the bad weather, I-80 between Laramie & Rawlins was placed close to the Medicine Bow Mountains. The winds come off these mountains and when mixed with even light snow can cause road conditions that cause the road to have to be closed. Long ago, from what has been said, local Wyoming residents advised them to use the US 30 footprint for I-80 as it is far enough away from the mountains to not have to be closed as much due to bad road conditions. However, the engineers thought they knew better.
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JayhawkCO

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Re: Open houses for tolling I-80 across Wyoming
« Reply #111 on: March 30, 2021, 04:39:21 PM »

As for the bad weather, I-80 between Laramie & Rawlins was placed close to the Medicine Bow Mountains. The winds come off these mountains and when mixed with even light snow can cause road conditions that cause the road to have to be closed. Long ago, from what has been said, local Wyoming residents advised them to use the US 30 footprint for I-80 as it is far enough away from the mountains to not have to be closed as much due to bad road conditions. However, the engineers thought they knew better.

Maybe they should have also done something with I-25 between Fort Collins and Cheyenne.  I've had bluebird days down here in Denver and then when you get up right near the border, it is howling.  Ain't no wind like a Wyoming wind.

Chris

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Re: Open houses for tolling I-80 across Wyoming
« Reply #112 on: March 30, 2021, 04:56:06 PM »

As for the bad weather, I-80 between Laramie & Rawlins was placed close to the Medicine Bow Mountains. The winds come off these mountains and when mixed with even light snow can cause road conditions that cause the road to have to be closed. Long ago, from what has been said, local Wyoming residents advised them to use the US 30 footprint for I-80 as it is far enough away from the mountains to not have to be closed as much due to bad road conditions. However, the engineers thought they knew better.

Maybe they should have also done something with I-25 between Fort Collins and Cheyenne.  I've had bluebird days down here in Denver and then when you get up right near the border, it is howling.  Ain't no wind like a Wyoming wind.

Chris
Agreed. Wyoming wind can reach gusts above 75 mph even during periods of otherwise fair weather. When these winds are sustained at 30 or 40 mph and there is enough loose snow around, it will create "ground blizzards" that can obscure driver visibility even on clear days. The blowing snow can even fly off ridges and hills to produce areas of reduced visibility.

I've seen this effect in Thanksgiving Weekend 2019, where a storm blew through that left quite a bit of loose snow on the ground. The winds picked up after the storm moved out, and there were ground blizzards all along Interstate 25, US 287, and WYO 220. Visibility was often terrible, especially on WYO 220 in the high plains near Independence Rock. These winds combined with fresh blowing snow made for treacherous travel conditions.

And then there's the ice...

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Re: Open houses for tolling I-80 across Wyoming
« Reply #113 on: March 30, 2021, 08:51:18 PM »

As for the bad weather, I-80 between Laramie & Rawlins was placed close to the Medicine Bow Mountains. The winds come off these mountains and when mixed with even light snow can cause road conditions that cause the road to have to be closed. Long ago, from what has been said, local Wyoming residents advised them to use the US 30 footprint for I-80 as it is far enough away from the mountains to not have to be closed as much due to bad road conditions. However, the engineers thought they knew better.

Maybe they should have also done something with I-25 between Fort Collins and Cheyenne.  I've had bluebird days down here in Denver and then when you get up right near the border, it is howling.  Ain't no wind like a Wyoming wind.

Chris
Agreed. Wyoming wind can reach gusts above 75 mph even during periods of otherwise fair weather. When these winds are sustained at 30 or 40 mph and there is enough loose snow around, it will create "ground blizzards" that can obscure driver visibility even on clear days. The blowing snow can even fly off ridges and hills to produce areas of reduced visibility.

I've seen this effect in Thanksgiving Weekend 2019, where a storm blew through that left quite a bit of loose snow on the ground. The winds picked up after the storm moved out, and there were ground blizzards all along Interstate 25, US 287, and WYO 220. Visibility was often terrible, especially on WYO 220 in the high plains near Independence Rock. These winds combined with fresh blowing snow made for treacherous travel conditions.

And then there's the ice...

SM-G975U



I hear you on those icy patches where the snow drifts over the highway.  I was on WY-789 south with a 60+ MPH wind.  I came upon a lone patch of snowdrift on the road, slowed down, and it felt like the wind itself was pushing my Ford Transit van into the opposing lane.

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Re: Open houses for tolling I-80 across Wyoming
« Reply #115 on: March 31, 2021, 08:17:24 PM »

Good info, Plutonic Panda. The doorway to tolling remains open even if the bill to create tolls on Interstate 80 did not advance in this legislative session. The excerpt below contains good info on toll rates and whether Wyoming residents could be exempt from the tolls.

https://k2radio.com/wyoming-i-80-toll-road-authority-bill-tabled-for-now/

Quote
A bill that could eventually lead to Interstate 80 in Wyoming becoming a toll road has been tabled for now by a Wyoming legislative committee.

But it doesn't sound like the idea behind the bill is dead, judging from comments made by the committee chair at the end of the hearing. In fact, it could be revisited during a special session of the legislature that is widely expected to be called later this year. ...

In his testimony, the bill's primary sponsor, Rep. Cale Case [R-Fremont County] told the committee ''From a revenue standpoint, we don't have much to hang our hats on." Case said that while he has been voting for budget cuts in the Wyoming Senate "I'm also voting for revenue measures. I haven't seen any yet." He went on to say ''This tolling bill is a tool in that." He said the bill could "potentially solve our revenue problems with Interstate 80, and free up a lot of money that could be spent elsewhere."

He urged committee members to 'think big," adding "it's a mountain of money, depending on how the tolls are set." Case told the committee that using a 'very modest' tolling rate of $10.00 per passenger car and $100.00 for commercial trucks, toll road could raise $170 million per year.

Federal rules would require that money be spent on Interstate 80. The federal guidelines also would prohibit only imposing the fees on out-of-state motorists, so Wyoming vehicles could not be exempt from the tolls. ...

The committee ended up tabling the bill on a voice vote. But (Committee Chair Rep. Don) Burkhart told Case to "hang with this committee. We are going to look at this in the interim, and potentially before the special session." He added, "I think it's something we need to look at."


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