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Interstate 11 alignment, though Vegas and points north

Started by swbrotha100, October 16, 2012, 09:51:18 PM

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Bobby5280

#1075
Quote from: VoyagerI'd think they'd want it to connect into existing 580, but then that leaves a long jog that the route has to take over some mountains to connect around Walker Lake.

If the United States didn't suck so damned badly at building tunnels an East-West route from Smith Valley thru the mountains next to Walker Lake would be possible.

Americans can build tunnels, but not without it costing billions upon billions of dollars. I look over at Japan and marvel at the number of railroad and highway tunnels they have there. Some of those tunnels are really long too. We just can't manage to do that here. We suck.

I think it's more realistic to start an I-11 route in Clark, where all those big logistics facilities are located. Even if a new freeway would have to be elevated over portions of the existing NV-439 surface street I don't think there would be any objections. There are no homes there. Just gigantic warehouses and assembly plants.

Clark is 15 miles closer to Reno & Sparks than Fernley (the site where some are proposing I-11 connect into I-80).

I really don't like the very crooked route US-95 takes from Tonopah to Schurz (due to all the mountains along that way). And I don't think it's necessary for I-11 to go through Hawthorne either. It's possible for I-11 to take a far more direct route from Tonopah to Schurz by bypassing Walker Lake to the East. Building I-11 over/along Pole Line Road would shave a bunch of miles off the route. In the towns of Hawthorne and Babbit there isn't enough room to expand US-95 into an Interstate with frontage roads. The Army Ammunition Depot there prevents any other alignments from being considered; the only option is upgrading along existing US-95. It would just be easier to bypass all of that. The military might be just fine with that too; better for security purposes.

Quote from: vdeaneI expect they would try to make I-11 parallel to I-10 and go to Tucson regardless of what they do south of there since that bit is proposed as a favor to housing developers.  I don't see them building a parallel road to I-19; instead it seems that they'll route I-11 down I-19 for no reason, probably decommissioning I-19 in the process.

I think the most likely way I-11 ends is simply terminating at I-10 near the Sun Valley Parkway exit. I don't expect it to ever get extended down to the Maricopa and Casa Grande areas, much less extending farther down to Tucson. It's going to take decades for this highway to be built. 20 or so years from now, when more of I-11 is being fleshed out between Las Vegas and Phoenix, the scope of America's looming demographics disaster will become more clear. Those McMansion developments out West of the White Tank mountains will be turning into financial disaster zones. So will many other old folks communities around the Phoenix area.

If I-11 ever gets extended South of I-10 I think the most likely scenario is an upgrade of AZ-85 from Buckeye to Gila Bend.

I wouldn't mind seeing I-19 redesignated as I-11. The I-19 number could be freed up and used elsewhere in maybe Utah or Idaho. But that would require successfully building an I-11 South outer loop through the Maricopa and Casa Grande areas, places where there is a lot of tribal population and resistance to any highway building efforts.


TheStranger

Quote from: Bobby5280 on June 07, 2024, 02:09:02 PM
Quote from: VoyagerI'd think they'd want it to connect into existing 580, but then that leaves a long jog that the route has to take over some mountains to connect around Walker Lake.

If the United States didn't suck so damned badly at building tunnels an East-West route from Smith Valley thru the mountains next to Walker Lake would be possible.

Americans can build tunnels, but not without it costing billions upon billions of dollars. I look over at Japan and marvel at the number of railroad and highway tunnels they have there. Some of those tunnels are really long too. We just can't manage to do that here. We suck.

The Yamate Tunnel in Tokyo that carries the C2 expressway cost approximately 118 billion USD (the article says 93 billion British pounds) -
https://www.express.co.uk/news/world/1884958/yamate-tunnel-japan-second-longest-world

It is also, like most of Japan's expressways, a toll route.

To put this in perspective, the California High Speed Rail project is projected to cost around that same range or higher at full build-out.

Chris Sampang

Great Lakes Roads

Indian Springs (FUTURE I-11) alignment options...

Option 1: Bypass

Option 2: Split

Option 3: Lowered on existing US 95 alignment

Option 4: Raised on existing US 95 alignment
-Jay Seaburg

DenverBrian

The split option seems like a loooooooong stretch of one way, one lane road.

The Ghostbuster

I don't see Interstate 11 extended beyond NV 157 any time soon. It is good that they are looking at alternatives for the Indian Springs area. That will be the biggest part of getting Interstate 11 extended further up US 95.

brad2971

Quote from: The Ghostbuster on June 07, 2024, 08:47:26 PMI don't see Interstate 11 extended beyond NV 157 any time soon. It is good that they are looking at alternatives for the Indian Springs area. That will be the biggest part of getting Interstate 11 extended further up US 95.

While I-11 may not be needed for a while as a full freeway past NV 157, a single interchange serving both Indian Springs and Creech AFB would go a long way. And judging from the raised alternative, it looks like NDOT already has a preferred alternative in mind for that interchange (on the east side of both the town and the air force base).

cl94

Going back to where I-11 would hit I-80 if it ever gets that far, preferred alternatives have it hitting in Fernley. The area around Exit 32 has frequent driveway access, TRIC is only going to continue expanding, and there's a lot of rough terrain in there. NV 439 is not expressway grade and there are no plans to make it such. How it gets from Walker Lake to Fernley is up for debate, but Fernley is where NDOT has it ending.

Why Fernley, despite a routing along 95A and 439 being slightly shorter? Far smoother terrain, more that could be easily upgraded in place, and it would provide a connection to NAS Fallon. Even now, 95A-50-439 is only slightly faster than 95A-80 or 95-50-50A-80, and I routinely will choose one of the latter two routes if heading NB to take advantage of cheaper gas in Fernley. I will also note that Fernley is becoming a distribution hub in its own right, so it would make sense to have something that could serve both Fernley and TRIC.
Please note: All posts represent my personal opinions and do not represent those of my employer or any of its partner agencies.

Travel Mapping (updated weekly)

Scott5114

Quote from: Bobby5280 on June 07, 2024, 10:47:24 AMI don't see how I-11 would provide any benefit to New Mexico or Texas (much less Oklahoma).

Guess which Interstate I took when I moved out of Oklahoma. :bigass:
uncontrollable freak sardine salad chef

rickmastfan67


FightingIrish

Quote from: Bobby5280 on June 07, 2024, 02:09:02 PM
Quote from: VoyagerI'd think they'd want it to connect into existing 580, but then that leaves a long jog that the route has to take over some mountains to connect around Walker Lake.

If the United States didn't suck so damned badly at building tunnels an East-West route from Smith Valley thru the mountains next to Walker Lake would be possible.

Americans can build tunnels, but not without it costing billions upon billions of dollars. I look over at Japan and marvel at the number of railroad and highway tunnels they have there. Some of those tunnels are really long too. We just can't manage to do that here. We suck.

I think it's more realistic to start an I-11 route in Clark, where all those big logistics facilities are located. Even if a new freeway would have to be elevated over portions of the existing NV-439 surface street I don't think there would be any objections. There are no homes there. Just gigantic warehouses and assembly plants.

Clark is 15 miles closer to Reno & Sparks than Fernley (the site where some are proposing I-11 connect into I-80).

I really don't like the very crooked route US-95 takes from Tonopah to Schurz (due to all the mountains along that way). And I don't think it's necessary for I-11 to go through Hawthorne either. It's possible for I-11 to take a far more direct route from Tonopah to Schurz by bypassing Walker Lake to the East. Building I-11 over/along Pole Line Road would shave a bunch of miles off the route. In the towns of Hawthorne and Babbit there isn't enough room to expand US-95 into an Interstate with frontage roads. The Army Ammunition Depot there prevents any other alignments from being considered; the only option is upgrading along existing US-95. It would just be easier to bypass all of that. The military might be just fine with that too; better for security purposes.

Quote from: vdeaneI expect they would try to make I-11 parallel to I-10 and go to Tucson regardless of what they do south of there since that bit is proposed as a favor to housing developers.  I don't see them building a parallel road to I-19; instead it seems that they'll route I-11 down I-19 for no reason, probably decommissioning I-19 in the process.

I think the most likely way I-11 ends is simply terminating at I-10 near the Sun Valley Parkway exit. I don't expect it to ever get extended down to the Maricopa and Casa Grande areas, much less extending farther down to Tucson. It's going to take decades for this highway to be built. 20 or so years from now, when more of I-11 is being fleshed out between Las Vegas and Phoenix, the scope of America's looming demographics disaster will become more clear. Those McMansion developments out West of the White Tank mountains will be turning into financial disaster zones. So will many other old folks communities around the Phoenix area.

If I-11 ever gets extended South of I-10 I think the most likely scenario is an upgrade of AZ-85 from Buckeye to Gila Bend.

I wouldn't mind seeing I-19 redesignated as I-11. The I-19 number could be freed up and used elsewhere in maybe Utah or Idaho. But that would require successfully building an I-11 South outer loop through the Maricopa and Casa Grande areas, places where there is a lot of tribal population and resistance to any highway building efforts.
I-19 is fine as-is. There is zero need for running more N-S interstate highways through Utah and Idaho. The mountains, sparse population, environmental concerns and low traffic counts negate the whole idea.

And, as I said before, running a separate interstate (I-11) south and parallel to I-8 is a foolish waste of money and a major headache. AZ 85 to I-8 will work fine. And it doesn't matter if and/or when housing developments start sprouting around Buckeye. It's referred to as the Phoenix Bypass, and for heavy truck freight traffic between Nogales, Las Vegas and I-15 north to the Canadian border, it looks like a pretty good idea, as it frees up I-10 congestion in the immediate Phoenix area. And a combo of I-10 and I-11 provides a direct interstate connection between Phoenix and Las Vegas. It seems like the smart, economical choice.

pderocco

Quote from: cl94 on June 08, 2024, 12:56:36 AMGoing back to where I-11 would hit I-80 if it ever gets that far, preferred alternatives have it hitting in Fernley. The area around Exit 32 has frequent driveway access, TRIC is only going to continue expanding, and there's a lot of rough terrain in there. NV 439 is not expressway grade and there are no plans to make it such. How it gets from Walker Lake to Fernley is up for debate, but Fernley is where NDOT has it ending.

Why Fernley, despite a routing along 95A and 439 being slightly shorter? Far smoother terrain, more that could be easily upgraded in place, and it would provide a connection to NAS Fallon. Even now, 95A-50-439 is only slightly faster than 95A-80 or 95-50-50A-80, and I routinely will choose one of the latter two routes if heading NB to take advantage of cheaper gas in Fernley. I will also note that Fernley is becoming a distribution hub in its own right, so it would make sense to have something that could serve both Fernley and TRIC.
Then, when circumstances warrant it, they could build a spur to Carson City along US-50 and call it I-111.

DenverBrian

Quote from: rickmastfan67 on June 08, 2024, 07:03:13 AM
Interesting that they focused solely on the change from US-95 to I-11. Poor I-515, the red headed stepchild of Nevada shields, now dead. :)

US 395

Quote from: cl94 on June 08, 2024, 12:56:36 AMGoing back to where I-11 would hit I-80 if it ever gets that far, preferred alternatives have it hitting in Fernley. The area around Exit 32 has frequent driveway access, TRIC is only going to continue expanding, and there's a lot of rough terrain in there. NV 439 is not expressway grade and there are no plans to make it such. How it gets from Walker Lake to Fernley is up for debate, but Fernley is where NDOT has it ending.

Why Fernley, despite a routing along 95A and 439 being slightly shorter? Far smoother terrain, more that could be easily upgraded in place, and it would provide a connection to NAS Fallon. Even now, 95A-50-439 is only slightly faster than 95A-80 or 95-50-50A-80, and I routinely will choose one of the latter two routes if heading NB to take advantage of cheaper gas in Fernley. I will also note that Fernley is becoming a distribution hub in its own right, so it would make sense to have something that could serve both Fernley and TRIC.

Guess directly connecting the only two metro areas of our state was never high enough on the totem pole. Shame.

cl94

Engineering constraints and cost. Why spend a ton more money to shave off a few minutes? Same reason I-11 itself isn't a super high priority- thanks to terrain, you may chop half an hour off of a 7-8 hour drive with a freeway. Not worth the many billions it would cost, especially if the feds won't kick in more funding for an Interstate designation. I assume much of the route would get a 75 MPH speed limit at most given terrain, but even 80 wouldn't significantly decrease travel times.

Nevada has much higher priorities than building a freeway along a corridor that sees 3-5k vehicles/day. The segment they're looking at now is cheap to convert, a high-crash corridor, and the busiest part of 95 north of Vegas. And I'm not even convinced the next round of upgrades will make that full freeway.

(personal opinion emphasized)
Please note: All posts represent my personal opinions and do not represent those of my employer or any of its partner agencies.

Travel Mapping (updated weekly)

Great Lakes Roads

https://storymaps.arcgis.com/stories/bc52e5ebdc5b430eaa3a9742f2abaa01

Here is NDOT's virtual public meeting on the future I-11 from Las Vegas (Kyle Canyon Road interchange) to the Mercury interchange.

Proposed Interchange Improvements
A set of 10 interchanges are proposed to be built or improved along U.S. 95 within the study corridor, along with a new truck parking facility. The existing Kyle Canyon Road interchange will remain as is. Generally, the new interchange configuration will consist of a traditional diamond layout, providing access to both sides of I-11 and maximizing the distance between the ramp terminals for future operational benefit.

Sheep Mountain Road Interchange (New): This interchange is proposed to connect to the planned Sheep Mountain Parkway corridor, which will provide north-south access west of CC-215 through the City of Las Vegas and Clark County.

Snow Mountain Interchange (Existing): This interchange currently provides access to the Las Vegas Paiute tribal land and golf course.  The Snow Mountain interchange would remain as is, although the geometric layout of the ramps do not meet current interstate design standards for increased speeds and would be reconstructed with larger curves. In addition, a new access road to Tule Springs National Monument will be constructed.

Corn Creek Road Interchange (New): This new interchange would provide access to the community of Corn Creek and the Corn Creek Visitor Center and Desert National Wildlife Refuge. A frontage road connection would also be constructed along the north side of existing U.S. 95 to provide connectivity to a popular public hiking trail head accessing the Tule Springs Fossil Beds.

Lee Canyon Road Interchange (Existing): A new interchange would replace the existing Lee Canyon Road and U.S. 95 intersection to provide interstate access to the Lee Canyon and Mt. Charleston recreation and residential areas south of U.S. 95 and a connection to the Creech AFB facility known as 63C to the north of U.S. 95. Upgrading the existing at-grade intersection will eliminate the crashes that commonly occur at this location.

Truck Parking Facility: A new truck parking facility will be constructed that provides a safe pull off area for long-haul trucks to rest. No additional facilities will be constructed at this location.

Cold Creek Road Interchange (New):  An interchange would replace the existing at-grade intersection that provides access to the Southern Desert Correctional Center and the community of Cold Creek. A frontage road will be built on the north side of existing U.S. 95 to provide access to the Creech AFB facility known as Point Bravo.

Indian Springs Interchanges (2) (New): These interchanges will be placed on both ends of the community, as shown in the "Corridor Alternatives at Indian Springs" section.

Big Timber Spring Interchange (New): A new interchange would be constructed at this location to provide access to public lands located south of U.S. 95. This would replace the existing at grade intersection.

Rock Spring Interchange (New): A new interchange would be constructed at this location to provide access to public lands located south of U.S. 95. This would replace the existing at grade intersection.

Mercury Interchange (Existing): The existing Mercury interchange would be replaced to meet interstate standards and improve access to and from the USDOE facilities to the north of U.S. 95.
-Jay Seaburg

vdeane

Quote from: Great Lakes Roads on June 11, 2024, 12:00:40 AMLee Canyon Road Interchange (Existing): A new interchange would replace the existing Lee Canyon Road and U.S. 95 intersection to provide interstate access to the Lee Canyon and Mt. Charleston recreation and residential areas south of U.S. 95 and a connection to the Creech AFB facility known as 63C to the north of U.S. 95. Upgrading the existing at-grade intersection will eliminate the crashes that commonly occur at this location.
I'm curious why they call this "existing".  Aren't most/all of the "new" interchanges also at existing at-grade intersections?  What makes this one so special that it's noted similarly to the existing full interchanges?
Please note: All comments here represent my own personal opinion and do not reflect the official position of NYSDOT or its affiliates.

roadfro

Quote from: vdeane on June 11, 2024, 12:59:13 PM
Quote from: Great Lakes Roads on June 11, 2024, 12:00:40 AMLee Canyon Road Interchange (Existing): A new interchange would replace the existing Lee Canyon Road and U.S. 95 intersection to provide interstate access to the Lee Canyon and Mt. Charleston recreation and residential areas south of U.S. 95 and a connection to the Creech AFB facility known as 63C to the north of U.S. 95. Upgrading the existing at-grade intersection will eliminate the crashes that commonly occur at this location.
I'm curious why they call this "existing".  Aren't most/all of the "new" interchanges also at existing at-grade intersections?  What makes this one so special that it's noted similarly to the existing full interchanges?
I was wondering this myself. The only thing I can think of is that the southbound US 95 direction does have a separate right turn ramp to Lee Canyon Rd (there's actually an unnumbered exit gore sign too) and another ramp from Lee Canyon Rd to SB US 95. (Kyle Canyon Rd was set up the same way before the DDI was constructed.) But those improvements don't rise to the level of interchange, especially since northbound movements are at grade.
Roadfro - AARoads Pacific Southwest moderator since 2010, Nevada roadgeek since 1983.

Sub-Urbanite

I'm honestly surprised by this level of research and work by NDOT. It's encouraging to see they're developing tangible plans moving forward.

What I see here are a couple of construction packages – maybe three packages – that can be funded one batch at a time from the Legislature. NDOT can go to Carson City in 2025 and ask for $150 million for the first 20 miles to Indian Springs, come back in '27 for the Indian Springs bypass, and then see where they're at in '29 and whether there's support for the segment to Mercury.

Simultaneous to that they can start design on the Mercury-to-Beatty segment so that it's ready for funding asks in the 2030s. It's a pretty slick approach if it's what they're doing, and it shows more momentum than I expected.


Quote from: The Ghostbuster on June 07, 2024, 08:47:26 PMI don't see Interstate 11 extended beyond NV 157 any time soon. It is good that they are looking at alternatives for the Indian Springs area. That will be the biggest part of getting Interstate 11 extended further up US 95.

Bobby5280

Quote from: Sub-UrbaniteWhat I see here are a couple of construction packages – maybe three packages – that can be funded one batch at a time from the Legislature. NDOT can go to Carson City in 2025 and ask for $150 million for the first 20 miles to Indian Springs, come back in '27 for the Indian Springs bypass, and then see where they're at in '29 and whether there's support for the segment to Mercury.

Regarding Indian Springs, a bypass isn't necessary. There is enough space for them to upgrade the existing US-95 highway to Interstate standards. Frontage roads are flanking US-95 for a couple of blocks in the brief main part of town. The existing median, which incorporates some left turn lanes, uses a good amount of space. That can be re-used by the freeway main lanes.

A bypass of Indian Springs probably wouldn't be feasible. Creech AFB borders the North side of the highway. The town is built from the South of the highway to the edge of the mountains. A South bypass of Indian Springs would have to go well South of town behind the first cluster of mountains. It would be less expensive (and less detrimental) to relocate the couple of businesses next to the road, if that was even necessary. The situation in Indian Springs looks a lot easier to deal with than the US-281 (Future I-69C) upgrade thru Falfurrias, TX.

Towns like Beatty and Tonopah pose more difficult Interstate routing problems. Tonopah will probably need a bypass around the South and West sides of Siebert Mountain and Mount Butler to get I-11 past that point. It doesn't look feasible at all to route I-11 into Tonopah. Beatty might be easier, but the route would have to skirt the town on its East side and could involve cuts into the neighboring hillsides.

The Ghostbuster

I find it interesting that while Exit 99 (Snow Mountain) has its exit number signposted, Exit 136 (Mercury Hwy.) does not have its exit number posted in either direction (although it is marked on Google Maps). Probably because Exit 99 is a standard interchange near Las Vegas, while Exit 136 is a podunk, substandard interchange in the middle of nowhere.

Scott5114

Quote from: Sub-Urbanite on June 12, 2024, 02:49:52 PMI'm honestly surprised by this level of research and work by NDOT. It's encouraging to see they're developing tangible plans moving forward. ... It's a pretty slick approach if it's what they're doing, and it shows more momentum than I expected.

Nevada's government is probably the most effective one I've ever worked with. (Though that isn't a terribly high bar to clear, I suppose.) I've been quite impressed by them in my time here.
uncontrollable freak sardine salad chef

pderocco

None of this makes sense unless there is actual residential development going on along that corridor. That may happen to some degree, but it takes a lot of traffic to make it necessary to upgrade a 4-lane divided expressway to freeway, let alone Interstate, standards. If there's a busy intersection, say, at Indian Springs, they could grade separate it without doing the full monty.

I wonder if over the next 20 years there won't be more of a demand for upgrading the 160 corridor to Pahrump. That's the biggest population center within commuting distance from the LV area.

Scott5114

Quote from: pderocco on June 13, 2024, 02:30:24 AMNone of this makes sense unless there is actual residential development going on along that corridor.

There's an Air Force base in Indian Springs (Creech AFB), and the Mercury exit is basically a gate to the whole glob of top-secret stuff Area 51 is part of. So, if nothing else, this particular part of I-11 would be serving the "defense highway" mandate of the IHS by providing an all-freeway route between Nellis and Creech air force bases and Mercury.

Quote from: pderocco on June 13, 2024, 02:30:24 AMI wonder if over the next 20 years there won't be more of a demand for upgrading the 160 corridor to Pahrump. That's the biggest population center within commuting distance from the LV area.

In addition to Pahrump, the southwest part of the Las Vegas Valley is currently the hot spot for growth, and the median income in that part of the valley recently surpassed Summerlin and Henderson, according to local news reports. A lot of that growth is along the NV 160 (Blue Diamond Road) corridor. That being said, the NV 160 corridor is getting fairly built up, and it looks like there wouldn't be enough ROW to squeeze in a freeway east of Rainbow or so. So if you wanted to have a freeway that connects to I-15, you'd have to swing south and connect somewhere near the Sloan exit. The topography that far south starts getting dicey, though, so NDOT would have some hard choices to make regarding that corridor. (Kind of reminds me of the OK-9 corridor's connection to I-35, but with more mountains and rich people in the way.)
uncontrollable freak sardine salad chef

Sub-Urbanite

Quote from: The Ghostbuster on June 12, 2024, 06:37:44 PMI find it interesting that while Exit 99 (Snow Mountain) has its exit number signposted, Exit 136 (Mercury Hwy.) does not have its exit number posted in either direction (although it is marked on Google Maps). Probably because Exit 99 is a standard interchange near Las Vegas, while Exit 136 is a podunk, substandard interchange in the middle of nowhere.

The Mercury interchange predates *all* of the exits on US 95 down to Jones Boulevard. When it was built, there were a lot of contractors commuting from Vegas to Mercury daily, so much so that there was even a Park & Ride lot up by the Ann Road crossing.

Sub-Urbanite

Have we learned nothing in the last 50 years?

Stop. Building. Interstates. Close. To. Or. Through. Communities.

Quote from: Bobby5280 on June 12, 2024, 03:39:21 PM
Quote from: Sub-UrbaniteWhat I see here are a couple of construction packages – maybe three packages – that can be funded one batch at a time from the Legislature. NDOT can go to Carson City in 2025 and ask for $150 million for the first 20 miles to Indian Springs, come back in '27 for the Indian Springs bypass, and then see where they're at in '29 and whether there's support for the segment to Mercury.

Regarding Indian Springs, a bypass isn't necessary. There is enough space for them to upgrade the existing US-95 highway to Interstate standards. Frontage roads are flanking US-95 for a couple of blocks in the brief main part of town. The existing median, which incorporates some left turn lanes, uses a good amount of space. That can be re-used by the freeway main lanes.



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