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Regional Boards => Mid-Atlantic => Topic started by: cpzilliacus on December 20, 2012, 10:08:22 PM

Title: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on December 20, 2012, 10:08:22 PM
Maryland Transportation Authority press release: FHWA SIGNS OFF ON NICE BRIDGE PLANNING STUDY (http://www.mdta.maryland.gov/News/MDTA_News_Releases/FHWA_SIGNS_OFF_ON_NICE_BRIDGE_PLANNING_STUDY)

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Selected Alternative Includes New Four Lane Bridge with Bike/Ped Path; Planning Phase of Nice Bridge Improvement Project Now Complete

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The MD Transportation Authority (MDTA) has completed a six-year study to select an alternative to eventually replace the 72-year-old, two-lane Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge (US 301), which connects Charles County, Md., and King George County, Va., across the Potomac River.

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The alternative selected (Modified Alternate 7) consists of a new four-lane bridge built parallel to and north of the existing bridge, with a two-way bicycle/pedestrian path along the south side, and removal of the existing bridge.  A designated path on each shore would guide bikers and pedestrians to the appropriate outside shoulder along the US 301 approach roadway.  Inclusion of a bike/ped path reflects public comments and recently enacted State legislation.

Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: WillWeaverRVA on December 20, 2012, 11:02:32 PM
Would the replacement bridge's design be similar to the old one's?
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on December 20, 2012, 11:12:17 PM
Would the replacement bridge's design be similar to the old one's?

I don't think that has been decided yet, though I think that the probability of a cable-stayed structure is pretty high.

The EIS documents are online here: http://www.mdta.maryland.gov/Nicebridge/nice_index.html (http://www.mdta.maryland.gov/Nicebridge/nice_index.html)
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: WillWeaverRVA on December 20, 2012, 11:54:03 PM
Would the replacement bridge's design be similar to the old one's?

I don't think that has been decided yet, though I think that the probability of a cable-stayed structure is pretty high.

The EIS documents are online here: www.mdta.maryland.gov/Nicebridge/ (http://www.mdta.maryland.gov/Nicebridge/)

Thanks. I find it funny that the maps in the study use Maryland shields for Virginia routes.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: NJRoadfan on December 21, 2012, 12:23:43 AM
Were be nice (ha) if this planning included some upgrades along the US-301 corridor to make it a more viable bypass of the DC area. I-95 isn't getting any easier to drive between Richmond and the Beltway.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Takumi on December 21, 2012, 12:34:21 AM
I got a 404 error with that link.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on December 21, 2012, 12:45:42 AM
Would the replacement bridge's design be similar to the old one's?

I don't think that has been decided yet, though I think that the probability of a cable-stayed structure is pretty high.

The EIS documents are online here: www.mdta.maryland.gov/Nicebridge/ (http://www.mdta.maryland.gov/Nicebridge/)

Thanks. I find it funny that the maps in the study use Maryland shields for Virginia routes.

Good point.  That is annoying, isn't it? 

Especially when the MdTA's sister agency, SHA, knows how to do Virginia  shields (primary and secondary systems, too), on the approaches to the Wilson Bridge.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on December 21, 2012, 12:46:48 AM
I got a 404 error with that link.

Try now.  I redid the URL.  Should work.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on December 21, 2012, 12:48:11 AM
Were be nice (ha) if this planning included some upgrades along the US-301 corridor to make it a more viable bypass of the DC area. I-95 isn't getting any easier to drive between Richmond and the Beltway.

Maryland is taking an incrementalist approach (so I understand) to upgrading U.S. 301 between the Gov. Nice Bridge and U.S. 50 at Bowie.

There's no money in the till for a project to replace all of the at-grade intersections with grade separated interchanges (though that would be nice).
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on December 21, 2012, 01:08:50 AM
TOLLROADSnews: New Nice Bridge MD-VA moves forward (http://www.tollroadsnews.com/node/6327)

Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: froggie on December 21, 2012, 06:35:55 AM
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There's no money in the till for a project to replace all of the at-grade intersections with grade separated interchanges (though that would be nice).

Given the amount of private access along the roadway on both sides of the Potomac, this would be a *VERY* expensive undertaking.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on December 21, 2012, 09:07:12 AM
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There's no money in the till for a project to replace all of the at-grade intersections with grade separated interchanges (though that would be nice).

Given the amount of private access along the roadway on both sides of the Potomac, this would be a *VERY* expensive undertaking.

Adam, absolutely correct.

And made even worse in Maryland, where there is private development in the median of U.S. 301 in Prince George's County (though that did not stop Maryland from building I-97 through Gambrills, where there was much development in the median of the road that preceded it, Md. 3).
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: 1995hoo on December 21, 2012, 09:36:09 AM
Would the replacement bridge's design be similar to the old one's?

I don't think that has been decided yet, though I think that the probability of a cable-stayed structure is pretty high.

The EIS documents are online here: www.mdta.maryland.gov/Nicebridge/ (http://www.mdta.maryland.gov/Nicebridge/)

Thanks. I find it funny that the maps in the study use Maryland shields for Virginia routes.

Good point.  That is annoying, isn't it? 

Especially when the MdTA's sister agency, SHA, knows how to do Virginia  shields (primary and secondary systems, too), on the approaches to the Wilson Bridge.

I've always wondered, how do those sorts of things actually work? I don't know anything about how they manufacture the signs, but the shields appear to be stuck onto the sheet metal. So I've always wondered whether Maryland actually manufactures the shield or whether they simply get one from Virginia's sign shop.



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There's no money in the till for a project to replace all of the at-grade intersections with grade separated interchanges (though that would be nice).

Given the amount of private access along the roadway on both sides of the Potomac, this would be a *VERY* expensive undertaking.

In the case of the portion of the road running through the Waldorf area, it might well be so expensive that it might (I emphasize "might") be more cost-effective to bypass the area, which of course would prompt another round of battles both because of the people along the bypass routing opposing it and the businesses in Waldorf not wanting to be taken off the main road.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on December 21, 2012, 10:50:09 AM
Would the replacement bridge's design be similar to the old one's?

I don't think that has been decided yet, though I think that the probability of a cable-stayed structure is pretty high.

The EIS documents are online here: www.mdta.maryland.gov/Nicebridge/ (http://www.mdta.maryland.gov/Nicebridge/)

Thanks. I find it funny that the maps in the study use Maryland shields for Virginia routes.

Good point.  That is annoying, isn't it? 

Especially when the MdTA's sister agency, SHA, knows how to do Virginia  shields (primary and secondary systems, too), on the approaches to the Wilson Bridge.

I've always wondered, how do those sorts of things actually work? I don't know anything about how they manufacture the signs, but the shields appear to be stuck onto the sheet metal. So I've always wondered whether Maryland actually manufactures the shield or whether they simply get one from Virginia's sign shop.

I don't know.  The Virginia shields on Maryland's signs approaching the WWB are so spot-on authentic looking, maybe they did come from VDOT's sign shop?  Or since they were installed as part of the WWB Project, maybe the contractor knew how to correctly make Virginia shields?

In the other direction, the Maryland shields on the Virginia approach to the WWB are also good, except for one minor "problem" - the Md. 5 shield used the blank for three digit route Maryland route numbers, instead of the one for 1- and 2-digits.  But that's not a big deal - I've seen that repeatedly done in Maryland as well (I recently saw a new one on Md. 3 in Anne Arundel County). 
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on December 21, 2012, 10:56:05 AM
In the case of the portion of the road running through the Waldorf area, it might well be so expensive that it might (I emphasize "might") be more cost-effective to bypass the area, which of course would prompt another round of battles both because of the people along the bypass routing opposing it and the businesses in Waldorf not wanting to be taken off the main road.

It has been discussed and studied. 

The Smart Growth industry has repeatedly tried to stir up opposition to a relocated U.S. 301 in Charles County around Waldorf, but Charles County is not especially fertile ground for such activities - it is about 10 light years away from Montgomery County, Md.

Charles County is Southern Maryland, with an emphasis on South.  If you were to wear a blindfold and not have a GPS unit, and be dropped off in the middle of that county, you might think you were in South  Carolina and not Maryland from the surroundings.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: NJRoadfan on December 21, 2012, 11:58:25 AM
Given the amount of private access along the roadway on both sides of the Potomac, this would be a *VERY* expensive undertaking.

Would be a great candidate for a toll road in both MD and VA. Thats a topic for another thread though.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Alps on December 21, 2012, 04:53:21 PM
Given the amount of private access along the roadway on both sides of the Potomac, this would be a *VERY* expensive undertaking.

Would be a great candidate for a toll road in both MD and VA. Thats a topic for another thread though.
Has such a thing ever been proposed in reality?
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: froggie on December 22, 2012, 10:06:36 PM
No.  Not for that corridor.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: mtantillo on December 23, 2012, 11:10:25 PM

I've always wondered, how do those sorts of things actually work? I don't know anything about how they manufacture the signs, but the shields appear to be stuck onto the sheet metal. So I've always wondered whether Maryland actually manufactures the shield or whether they simply get one from Virginia's sign shop.


Virginia's sign shop does not manufacture BGSs, those are all contracted out. 

Likely someone from Maryland requested the sign files from someone at VDOT, and thus the designs are correct. 
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: tmthyvs on March 22, 2013, 12:22:23 AM
And made even worse in Maryland, where there is private development in the median of U.S. 301 in Prince George's County (though that did not stop Maryland from building I-97 through Gambrills, where there was much development in the median of the road that preceded it, Md. 3).

Maryland did not build I-97 along Md. 3 as far as Gambrills. The development is still in the median of Md. 3 in Gambrills, especially between Md 175 and Waugh Chapel Road and between Johns Hopkins Road and Md 424.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on March 22, 2013, 07:02:16 AM
And made even worse in Maryland, where there is private development in the median of U.S. 301 in Prince George's County (though that did not stop Maryland from building I-97 through Gambrills, where there was much development in the median of the road that preceded it, Md. 3).

Maryland did not build I-97 along Md. 3 as far as Gambrills. The development is still in the median of Md. 3 in Gambrills, especially between Md 175 and Waugh Chapel Road and between Johns Hopkins Road and Md 424.

Yes it did.  The  present  northbound lanes of I-97 were once the southbound lanes of Md. 3 - between Md. 32 and Md. 3 Business.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: bsmart on March 22, 2013, 02:10:07 PM
I wish they would continue I-97 all the way down past the Nice Bridge and ON TO RICHMOND! ( Good reuse of the old Civil War battle cry :-))  It would almost legitimize the use of the I-97 designation
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on March 22, 2013, 03:22:55 PM
Given the amount of private access along the roadway on both sides of the Potomac, this would be a *VERY* expensive undertaking.

Would be a great candidate for a toll road in both MD and VA. Thats a topic for another thread though.
Has such a thing ever been proposed in reality?

Sorry for the long delay - I suppose I missed your question when  you posted it back in December.

The answer is yes, at least in part (but apparently not as a toll road).

Scott Kozel has documented the Washington Bypass studies (Eastern, relevant to this thread, and Western) of the late 1980's and early 1990's (killed mostly because of well-organized opposition in Maryland).

Details on Scott's Roads to the Future site here (http://www.roadstothefuture.com/Wash_Bypass.html).
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: tmthyvs on April 27, 2013, 10:04:33 PM
And made even worse in Maryland, where there is private development in the median of U.S. 301 in Prince George's County (though that did not stop Maryland from building I-97 through Gambrills, where there was much development in the median of the road that preceded it, Md. 3).

Maryland did not build I-97 along Md. 3 as far as Gambrills. The development is still in the median of Md. 3 in Gambrills, especially between Md 175 and Waugh Chapel Road and between Johns Hopkins Road and Md 424.

Yes it did.  The  present  northbound lanes of I-97 were once the southbound lanes of Md. 3 - between Md. 32 and Md. 3 Business.

Nitpicking, but that would be Millersville, hence my confusion. Is the present Veterans Highway (MD 178) then roughly the former northbound lanes of MD 3 in that stretch, with the businesses there formerly being in the median? Were many businesses overrun by I-97? The difficulty I see with the same strategy farther south would be the proliferation of businesses not only in the median but also on both sides of MD 3 and US 301.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on April 28, 2013, 09:46:04 AM
Nitpicking, but that would be Millersville, hence my confusion. Is the present Veterans Highway (MD 178) then roughly the former northbound lanes of MD 3 in that stretch, with the businesses there formerly being in the median? Were many businesses overrun by I-97? The difficulty I see with the same strategy farther south would be the proliferation of businesses not only in the median but also on both sides of MD 3 and US 301.

Millersville is fine with me.

You are correct that there has been a lot of commercial development along Md. 3 since I-97 was completed.  Including at least two massive retail centers on the left going north between Md 424 and Waugh Chapel Road.

Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: roadman65 on June 22, 2013, 09:37:25 AM
I wish they would continue I-97 all the way down past the Nice Bridge and ON TO RICHMOND! ( Good reuse of the old Civil War battle cry :-))  It would almost legitimize the use of the I-97 designation
I am with you on this.  It would not only make a good use out of the I-97 number, but also provide an alternative to the Capital Beltway that is already congested.  Plus, it would be an outer beltway of DC (or at least a half beltway) just like I-495 is for Boston, MA.

I suggested it before years ago on another thread, as I was inspired by another road site that listed the cancelled proposal of another east side beltway around DC and another Potomac crossing.  I always thought anyhow that a new I-95 alignment with a bridge south of Mount Vernon should have been built instead of the Woodrow Wilson Bridge replacement, as most of that crossing's traffic is through I-95 traffic.   An I-97 extension would work just as well if it were extended along US 301 and VA 207 to tie in with I-95 at Ruther Glen, VA, or even connect it with I-295 NE of Richmond and even renumber the eastern leg of I-295 to I-97 and have it continue along I-295 to end south of Petersburg making it a three city bypass and an interstate that is much longer than I-12 in Louisiana.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: WashuOtaku on June 22, 2013, 11:03:18 AM
I wish they would continue I-97 all the way down past the Nice Bridge and ON TO RICHMOND! ( Good reuse of the old Civil War battle cry :-))  It would almost legitimize the use of the I-97 designation

It's a good idea.  Though, I was always a fan of having I-97 go east from Annapolis then follow US 50 to Salisbury to connect with US 13; then from there head south to Norfolk where it would then follow US 17 to Wilmington.   :spin:  But an alternate around Washington is good too.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: froggie on June 23, 2013, 03:16:20 AM
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It would not only make a good use out of the I-97 number, but also provide an alternative to the Capital Beltway that is already congested.

The southeast side of the Beltway is not all that congested.  Not even close to the congestion level of the north and west sides, which an I-97 route would *NOT* help.

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I always thought anyhow that a new I-95 alignment with a bridge south of Mount Vernon should have been built instead of the Woodrow Wilson Bridge replacement, as most of that crossing's traffic is through I-95 traffic.

Ummmmm...no.  The vast majority of Woodrow Wilson Bridge traffic is DC-area traffic or traffic that has an origin or destination within DC.  At best, there is about 30,000 vpd of "through traffic" on I-95.  Per VDOT traffic figures, Wilson Bridge daily traffic is 150,000.  That's 20%, not even close to "most".

Furthermore, where would you put such a bridge?  Even in the 1970s when I-95 was cancelled through DC and rerouted onto the Beltway, development was to the point where you couldn't put a bridge anywhere north of Mason Neck (and if you thought the "Bi-County Parkway" folks were screaming about that road right now, Mason Neck residents would go on a murdering rampage if you were to even think of putting a bridge on Mason Neck).  We're to the point now where there's no way you could put a bridge upriver of about Stafford.  Best bet is just to replace the Nice Bridge and work on incremental improvements to US 301.  As nice as a freeway route along 301 would be, I just don't see it happening anytime soon.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on June 23, 2013, 01:34:24 PM
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It would not only make a good use out of the I-97 number, but also provide an alternative to the Capital Beltway that is already congested.

The southeast side of the Beltway is not all that congested.  Not even close to the congestion level of the north and west sides, which an I-97 route would *NOT* help.

IMO, that part of the Capital Beltway is "on the edge" of getting much worse, probably due to population growth  in places in Calvert, Charles and Anne Arundel Counties (and in Northern Virginia).  Population in Prince George's County has not changed much in recent years.

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I always thought anyhow that a new I-95 alignment with a bridge south of Mount Vernon should have been built instead of the Woodrow Wilson Bridge replacement, as most of that crossing's traffic is through I-95 traffic.

Ummmmm...no.  The vast majority of Woodrow Wilson Bridge traffic is DC-area traffic or traffic that has an origin or destination within DC.  At best, there is about 30,000 vpd of "through traffic" on I-95.  Per VDOT traffic figures, Wilson Bridge daily traffic is 150,000.  That's 20%, not even close to "most".

Within the D.C. metropolitan area, yes.   

Though I have seen how (mismanaged) incidents on the Southeast/Southwest Freeway in D.C. during the morning peak commute period have backed-up all the way down I-295 and onto the Wilson Bridge (before and after the Wilson Bridge widening project was completed).

2011 AADT for the Wilson Bridge (according to the Maryland Highway Location Reference) was 197,460.

Furthermore, where would you put such a bridge?  Even in the 1970s when I-95 was cancelled through DC and rerouted onto the Beltway, development was to the point where you couldn't put a bridge anywhere north of Mason Neck (and if you thought the "Bi-County Parkway" folks were screaming about that road right now, Mason Neck residents would go on a murdering rampage if you were to even think of putting a bridge on Mason Neck).  We're to the point now where there's no way you could put a bridge upriver of about Stafford.  Best bet is just to replace the Nice Bridge and work on incremental improvements to US 301.  As nice as a freeway route along 301 would be, I just don't see it happening anytime soon.

I recall one proposed crossing was near MCB Quantico and Triangle, Virginia (in other words, north of the Town of Quantico) and Chicamuxen, Charles County, Maryland (south of the U.S. Navy  reservation at Indian Head).

There is a  massive 500 kVa electric transmission line that crosses the Potomac near here (it crosses the river at an angle such that the Virginia end of the crossing (near Dominion Virginia Power's Possum Point electric generating station) is further north than the landing on the Maryland side).  The pylons holding the line up are clearly visible on Google Maps (here (https://maps.google.com/maps?q=38.512764,-77.244555&hl=en&ll=38.536552,-77.263069&spn=0.037799,0.077162&sll=38.512868,-77.244874&t=h&z=14)).
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: froggie on June 24, 2013, 01:01:50 AM
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Though I have seen how (mismanaged) incidents on the Southeast/Southwest Freeway in D.C. during the morning peak commute period have backed-up all the way down I-295 and onto the Wilson Bridge (before and after the Wilson Bridge widening project was completed).

To be fair, it's been over a year since I did the Outer Loop morning commute.  But my experience is that it's VERY RARE for that traffic stream to back up onto the Wilson Bridge proper.

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2011 AADT for the Wilson Bridge (according to the Maryland Highway Location Reference) was 197,460.

IMO, the VDOT number is probably closer to the reality.  But a higher number just proves my point more, that "through I-95 traffic" is even lower of a percentage of the overall traffic.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Mapmikey on June 24, 2013, 06:43:18 AM
A useful number for comparison is the traffic count in the segment of I-95 NB just north of VA 207 (43000), which would primarily be through traffic using I-95 to/through the DC area.  Of course, a chunk of this through traffic would be heading for I-270 instead of the Wilson Bridge.

Interestingly, the aadt for I-95 NB just before VA 207 is 46000, so only a modest amount of traffic is doing the VA 207 to US 301 to Maryland through route.

mainline I-95 NB traffic data just before the beltway is 118000.
I-395 NB traffic data just after the beltway is 77000.  Most of this would be coming from I-95 NB, leaving 40000 or so to split between the directions on the beltway from I-95 NB traffic (ramp aadt not available on the 2011 VDOT report).

I-495 EB traffic data just before the beltway is 97000
I-95/495 NB traffic data just after the beltway is 79000

I-95 NB before US 1 Alexandria is 64000
I-95 NB after US 1 Alexandria onto Wilson Bridge is 73000

My sense from doing 15 years of DC area commutes is that the majority of traffic is not through-traffic except Fri/Mon around major holidays.

Mapmikey
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on June 24, 2013, 01:38:47 PM
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Though I have seen how (mismanaged) incidents on the Southeast/Southwest Freeway in D.C. during the morning peak commute period have backed-up all the way down I-295 and onto the Wilson Bridge (before and after the Wilson Bridge widening project was completed).

To be fair, it's been over a year since I did the Outer Loop morning commute.  But my experience is that it's VERY RARE for that traffic stream to back up onto the Wilson Bridge proper.

Agreed that it has been rare, since it takes a severe incident (or a badly mismanaged incident) to get I-295 traffic backed up all the way from the 11th Street Bridge, S.E. to the Wilson Bridge.

Though I wonder if it will become more common when the Coast Guard and other parts of DHS start to move into their new office complex on the old St. Elizabeth's Hospital site across I-295 from Joint Base Anacostia Bolling?  I suspect that a lot of those jobs are held by residents of Northern Virginia.

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2011 AADT for the Wilson Bridge (according to the Maryland Highway Location Reference) was 197,460.

IMO, the VDOT number is probably closer to the reality.  But a higher number just proves my point more, that "through I-95 traffic" is even lower of a percentage of the overall traffic.

During the 1990's EIS process, I think I recall reading someplace that 80% of the auto traffic had at least one trip end within 10 miles of the bridge.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: froggie on June 25, 2013, 05:32:26 AM
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I-395 NB traffic data just after the beltway is 77000.  Most of this would be coming from I-95 NB, leaving 40000 or so to split between the directions on the beltway from I-95 NB traffic (ramp aadt not available on the 2011 VDOT report).

I seem to recall a report sometime after I'd transferred to DC that the I-95 "through movements" at the Springfield Interchange had roughly 40,000 vpd (combined for both directions).  This would've been 2009 or early 2010.  Can't imagine it's changed much, given the recession and the Telegraph Rd construction that has just now finished.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on June 25, 2013, 04:14:09 PM
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I-395 NB traffic data just after the beltway is 77000.  Most of this would be coming from I-95 NB, leaving 40000 or so to split between the directions on the beltway from I-95 NB traffic (ramp aadt not available on the 2011 VDOT report).

I seem to recall a report sometime after I'd transferred to DC that the I-95 "through movements" at the Springfield Interchange had roughly 40,000 vpd (combined for both directions).  This would've been 2009 or early 2010.  Can't imagine it's changed much, given the recession and the Telegraph Rd construction that has just now finished.

That seems pretty reasonable to me.

Though if we discuss truck traffic separately, then the percent of through traffic running in the I-95 corridor (and alternates, such as Va. 207, U.S. 301 and Md. 5) is pretty high.

Quite possibly over 50% of truck traffic - that also depends on the time of day  and the day of the week.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on June 25, 2013, 04:16:55 PM
Interestingly, the aadt for I-95 NB just before VA 207 is 46000, so only a modest amount of traffic is doing the VA 207 to US 301 to Maryland through route.

Agreed.  Though remember that the two-lane capacity of the current Gov. Harry  Nice Bridge will tend to constrain traffic to some extent  (as do the signalized intersections in LaPlata, Waldorf and Brandywine, all of which have capacity  issues that become obvious if a lot of I-95 bailout traffic heads for U.S. 301).
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: SteveG1988 on June 26, 2013, 05:18:14 PM
if i were to design the bridge, i would base it off the way they built the Key bridge around baltimore, keep the two lane approaches, but have the approaches curve upto the main span, to allow for a proper freeway connection in the near future, i know the original reasoning for the approaches being that way was due to reusing ROW for a tunnel, but i think it would work for allowing future expansion of the road.

(http://www.roadstothefuture.com/Key_Bridge_NB.jpg)
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: mtantillo on June 28, 2013, 10:44:37 AM
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I-395 NB traffic data just after the beltway is 77000.  Most of this would be coming from I-95 NB, leaving 40000 or so to split between the directions on the beltway from I-95 NB traffic (ramp aadt not available on the 2011 VDOT report).

I seem to recall a report sometime after I'd transferred to DC that the I-95 "through movements" at the Springfield Interchange had roughly 40,000 vpd (combined for both directions).  This would've been 2009 or early 2010.  Can't imagine it's changed much, given the recession and the Telegraph Rd construction that has just now finished.

Now the question is, how many of those 40,000 vpd are destined for points in the Washington DC area?  Either from Baltimore and north to points along I-95 in Fairfax and Prince William Counties, or points along I-95 and the east side of the Beltway to points south of Stafford on I-95.  That traffic would be using the through movement at Springfield, but is not through traffic that would be helped by an outer Beltway/301 bypass.  If you take the actual number of through vehicles that traverse I-95 from Stafford and points south to Columbia and points north, my guess is that it would be quite a bit smaller than 40,000. 
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: froggie on June 29, 2013, 06:52:05 AM
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If you take the actual number of through vehicles that traverse I-95 from Stafford and points south to Columbia and points north, my guess is that it would be quite a bit smaller than 40,000.

This is the number that I was estimating earlier could be no higher than 30,000.  Perhaps somewhat higher on long summer weekends, but even on those weekends, a lot of the I-95 crush is traffic going to/from Prince William County (Woodbridge/Potomac Mills/Dale City area in particular).
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on July 16, 2013, 12:47:03 PM
SoMdNews.com:  Engineering for Nice Bridge in state’s plans (http://www.somdnews.com/article/20130710/NEWS/130719773/1074/engineering-for-nice-bridge-in-state-x2019-s-plans&template=southernMaryland)

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The draft version of the state’s six-year transportation plan includes $6 million for preliminary engineering work on a replacement for the Gov. Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge, a high-ranking transportation official wrote to Sen. Thomas “Mac” Middleton two weeks ago.

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In a June 27 letter to Middleton, Maryland Transportation Authority Acting Executive Secretary Bruce Gartner wrote that the draft Consolidated Transportation Plan includes $6 million for preliminary engineering, boring and geotechnical work, as well as ordnance detection and pile testing near the replacement’s approved location, to the immediate north of the current span.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on July 16, 2013, 12:48:50 PM
SoMdNews.com:  Out of mean times, Nice Bridge was born (http://www.somdnews.com/article/20130712/NEWS/130719531/1075/out-of-mean-times-nice-bridge-was-born&template=southernMaryland)

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The country’s economy was struggling, jobs were scarce and a transportation route south of Maryland across the Potomac River was needed.

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The year was 1938.

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The Potomac River Bridge, now known as the Gov. Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge, was built for $5 million, $79.7 million in 2013 dollars, based on federal Consumer Price Index average inflation of 3.76 percent.

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But why was the bridge renamed in 1968 for a lawyer who was born in Washington, D.C., grew up in Baltimore, and became governor of Maryland in 1934?
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: PColumbus73 on August 30, 2013, 10:00:14 PM
I agree with the idea of extending Interstate 97 down to I-95 in Ruther Glen or take over the eastern I-295.

I'd love to see the Nice Memorial Bridge rebuilt as a suspension bridge.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: roadman65 on September 09, 2013, 06:02:36 PM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Governor_Harry_W._Nice_Memorial_Bridge  Here is a wiki article about the future plans for the Nice Bridge that will be fout lanes and have pedestrian and bicycle lanes.

Agreed, I think that I-97 should not only be extended for sake of through I-95 motorists, but for the whole US 301 corridor from Bowie to the current Nice Bridge.  It seems to me that 301 has built up plenty especially around Waldorf and South of LaPlata.  Sprawl has taken over and changed a rural highway into an arterial like elsewhere around the Metro DC area.  When I was there in 97, I remember added signals along US 301 south of MD 6 that were not there in 1980.  Plus you have had MD 5 realigned to bypass Waldorf because of it and putting a freeway south of Annapolis to Richmond or at least Ruther Glen would relieve local congestion in two places not just one.

Many experts even forget that some folks will travel hundreds of miles out of the way to avoid DC by taking I-78 to I-81 and back to I-95 via I-64 or even take US 15 as an alternate as well.  We do not know for sure how many people do this, but it would add to the traffic counts through the Springfield Interchange that is not counted as of now.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: froggie on September 10, 2013, 03:48:31 AM
Quote
Many experts even forget that some folks will travel hundreds of miles out of the way to avoid DC by taking I-78 to I-81 and back to I-95 via I-64 or even take US 15 as an alternate as well.  We do not know for sure how many people do this, but it would add to the traffic counts through the Springfield Interchange that is not counted as of now.

Not enough....the number is small enough to where it'd be considered a rounding error when compared to the Springfield Interchange volumes.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on November 21, 2013, 03:24:33 PM
MdTA press release: GOVERNOR O’MALLEY ANNOUNCES $50 MILLION TO REPLACE NICE BRIDGE OVER POTOMAC RIVER - Funds for design and right of way advance project to replace 72-year-old, two-lane bridge (http://www.mdta.maryland.gov/News/MDTA_News_Releases/GOVERNOR_OMALLEY_ANNOUNCES_50_MILLION_TO_REPLACE_NICE_BRIDGE_OVER_POTOMAC_RIVER)
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on November 25, 2013, 09:18:05 PM
TOLLROADSnews: Maryland moves another slow step toward getting new Nice Bridge on Lower Potomac, but it’s a near-20 year process (http://www.tollroadsnews.com/node/6845)

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2013-11-25: Maryland Transportation  (Toll) Authority (MdTA) has approved the next move on the long  slow journey to a  replacement of a bridge built in the term of one Governor Harry Nice. They have committed some $56m over five years to buying the right-of-way and getting design work done.  There’s no commitment to actual construction yet.

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In the announcement Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley is quoted; “Together, with the support of local elected officials and federal partners, we are making a significant down payment on a wider, safer and more pedestrian-friendly Nice Bridge. Southern Maryland residents have long waited for a new bridge, and this $50 million investment brings the new bridge one step closer to reality. There is more work to be done, but I commend the leadership of U.S. Congressman Steny Hoyer and Maryland Senator Thomas ‘Mac’ Middleton for working with the State to advance this crucial project.”
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: TheOneKEA on November 26, 2013, 06:06:17 PM
The documents posted so far by the MdTA can be found at http://www.mdta.maryland.gov/Nicebridge/nice_documents.html

The map of the selected alternative is at http://www.mdta.maryland.gov/Nicebridge/Documents/12-19-2012_PDF_Postings/08_fonsi_appendix-a_modified_alternate_7.pdf

Interestingly, there is no indication of where and how the toll plaza will be situated on the Maryland side, which suggests a strong commitment to open road tolling and a relatively low provision of toll booths.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on November 26, 2013, 10:36:20 PM
Interestingly, there is no indication of where and how the toll plaza will be situated on the Maryland side, which suggests a strong commitment to open road tolling and a relatively low provision of toll booths.

The environmental documents suggest all-electronic tolling, probably in both directions.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on March 05, 2015, 07:54:31 PM
MdTA is advertising a contract for subsurface boring and samples.

Bid documents (some pretty large) can be found here (https://emaryland.buyspeed.com/bso/external/bidDetail.sdo?bidId=MDJ0731018458&parentUrl=activeBids)
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on August 07, 2015, 07:28:58 PM
Looks like the old Harry Nice Memorial Bridge is going to be around for a while yet, since MdTA has posted an Invitation to Bid for repair work for that old structure, including a new catwalk under the bridge.

You should be able to click directly to this: https://emaryland.buyspeed.com/bso/external/bidDetail.sdo?bidId=MDJ0731022029&parentUrl=activeBids
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on August 31, 2015, 10:38:38 PM
Fredericksburg.com (Free Lance-Star, Fredericksburg, Va.): Comments sought on Harry Nice Bridge project (http://www.fredericksburg.com/news/environment/comments-sought-on-harry-nice-bridge-project/article_1a94e2ea-50d1-5de2-8783-6dfaca0b0333.html)

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The U.S. Coast Guard and the Maryland Transportation Authority are seeking information and comments from boaters and property owners on the planned replacement of the Harry Nice Memorial Bridge.

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The Maryland Transportation Authority recently started preliminary engineering work on the project that will replace the two-lane bridge over the Potomac River between the Dahlgren area of King George County and Maryland. The bridge is 75 years old and functionally obsolete.

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The Coast Guard is asking residents to fill out a “Mariner Survey” form to help determine the proper horizontal and vertical clearances needed for the new bridge.

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Officials also are seeking views from waterfront property owners and mariners on their support or opposition to the project.

Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: The Ghostbuster on September 01, 2015, 04:45:46 PM
Here is my question. Why did this bridge remain two lanes when both of the approaches on US 301 are four lanes?
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: davewiecking on September 01, 2015, 05:00:40 PM
Because it's a lot cheaper to widen a road than build a 1.7 mile long bridge over a navigable river?
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on September 01, 2015, 07:22:12 PM
Here is my question. Why did this bridge remain two lanes when both of the approaches on US 301 are four lanes?

Dave is correct. 

The bridge was built in 1940. I was not around then, but I suspect that the approaches were two lane highways (U.S. 301 was extended north into Maryland [originally to Baltimore] when the bridge opened).  That was plenty of highway capacity for the time.

Because the bridge is a toll crossing, taxes pay for little or nothing associated with the construction, maintenance and operation of bridge (long-standing Maryland policy).  So replacement has had to wait until there was bonding capacity available, and tolls to pay those bonds back.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: SteveG1988 on September 03, 2015, 07:25:43 PM
I would love to see them put in a tied arch bridge.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: ARMOURERERIC on September 03, 2015, 09:51:46 PM
Here is my question. Why did this bridge remain two lanes when both of the approaches on US 301 are four lanes?

Dave is correct. 

The bridge was built in 1940. I was not around then, but I suspect that the approaches were two lane highways (U.S. 301 was extended north into Maryland [originally to Baltimore] when the bridge opened).  That was plenty of highway capacity for the time.

Because the bridge is a toll crossing, taxes pay for little or nothing associated with the construction, maintenance and operation of bridge (long-standing Maryland policy).  So replacement has had to wait until there was bonding capacity available, and tolls to pay those bonds back.
I still remember when US 17 coming north towards 301 was not 4 lanes for the last 17 miles
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on September 04, 2015, 01:02:23 AM
Here is my question. Why did this bridge remain two lanes when both of the approaches on US 301 are four lanes?

Dave is correct. 

The bridge was built in 1940. I was not around then, but I suspect that the approaches were two lane highways (U.S. 301 was extended north into Maryland [originally to Baltimore] when the bridge opened).  That was plenty of highway capacity for the time.

Because the bridge is a toll crossing, taxes pay for little or nothing associated with the construction, maintenance and operation of bridge (long-standing Maryland policy).  So replacement has had to wait until there was bonding capacity available, and tolls to pay those bonds back.
I still remember when US 17 coming north towards 301 was not 4 lanes for the last 17 miles

Me too.  It was two lanes most of the way from Tappahannock to Port Royal.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on March 11, 2016, 09:04:23 PM
Baltimore Sun: Hogan administration says Nice Bridge will last another 30 years. It might have to. (http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/politics/bs-md-nice-bridge-20160303-story.html)

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The only practical connection between Southern Maryland and Virginia is a steep 76-year-old toll bridge with two narrow lanes, no shoulder, no sidewalk and no barrier in the median.

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According to the Hogan administration, that's good enough for at least another 30 years.

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Local residents disagree, but the administration's generally popular decision to cut tolls last year has left the Maryland Transportation Authority with little money for projects like replacing the Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge.

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A bill with powerful support in the General Assembly would force its construction anyway.

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"The bridge is a disaster waiting to happen," Charles County Commissioner Ken Robinson told a Senate committee last week. "Something as simple as a flat tire ties up traffic for hours."
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on March 14, 2016, 02:52:48 PM
Baltimore Sun: Hogan administration says Nice Bridge will last another 30 years. It might have to. (http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/politics/bs-md-nice-bridge-20160303-story.html)

The Hogan Administration responds to this story on Facebook here (https://www.facebook.com/larryhoganmd/photos/a.909053089139457.1073741828.907931509251615/1139171539460943/?type=3&theater).
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on November 21, 2016, 10:45:27 PM
WBAL Radio:  Hogan Announces $765M Replacement For Harry S. Nice Bridge (http://www.wbal.com/article/203790/2/hogan-announces-765m-replacement-for-harry-s-nice-bridge)

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Gov. Larry Hogan on Monday announced $765 million in funding to replace the Gov. Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge.

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The 75-year-old bridge crosses the Potomac River from Charles County to King George County in Virginia. State transportation officials plan to advertise the contract to design and build the new bridge in 2018, start construction in 2020 and open the new, wider bridge in 2023. Officials say the existing bridge would have required a "major rehabilitation project" within five years. Instead, it will be demolished after the new bridge opens.

WTOP Radio: Md. board approves building new $765M Harry Nice bridge (http://wtop.com/maryland/2016/11/maryland-board-approves-building-new-765m-harry-nice-bridge/)

EDIT: Baltimore Sun: Hogan plans $765 million replacement of Nice Bridge in Southern Maryland (http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/politics/bs-md-nice-bridge-20161121-story.html)

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Republican Gov. Larry Hogan announced plans Monday to replace the Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge in Southern Maryland — and to wage a political fight with the legislature over transportation policy.

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The two-fold announcement at the base of the bridge launched a massive infrastructure project, and set the stage for a war of words when the Democratic-controlled General Assembly convenes in January.

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The Nice Bridge carries U.S. 301 from Charles County over the Potomac River to Virginia. The steep, narrow, two-lane span is the only crossing of that river south of the Capital Beltway. It has no shoulder and lacks a median to separate opposing traffic.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: epzik8 on November 22, 2016, 11:19:44 AM
One word: YES.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: ixnay on November 22, 2016, 08:07:25 PM
Part... *part* of this new bridge will be paid for by toll payers.  How much will be underwritten by *tax*payers?

ixnay
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: froggie on November 22, 2016, 09:05:34 PM
Much needed, though I question A) the claim that lowering tolls increased revenue (I think it had more to do with the economy), B) the spat that Hogan had with the state Senator whose district includes the Nice Bridge, and C) whether the Coast Guard has actually signed off on a lower bridge clearance, as they have the authority on clearances over inland waterways.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: ixnay on November 23, 2016, 07:03:02 AM
How high is the new bridge clearance?  The Sun's article doesn't say.  If it's as low as the (newer) Wilson Bridge, it may not be politically feasible iykwim...

ixnay
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on November 23, 2016, 01:36:44 PM
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The Harry Nice Bridge would have needed significant repairs in the next five years if a replacement wasn’t built, according to the Transportation Authority.

In the otherwise not very adequate article from WTOP Radio (linked above (https://www.aaroads.com/forum/index.php?topic=8293.msg2188202#msg2188202)) is the sentence above, which may have motivated Hogan and his administration to drop this claim (also see upthread (https://www.aaroads.com/forum/index.php?topic=8293.msg2132107#msg2132107)):

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According to the Hogan administration, that's good enough for at least another 30 years.

I suspect that the MDTA engineers told Pete Rahn and Hogan what the estimated costs were for keeping the current bridge in a state of good repair might be, and that perhaps there was some "sticker shock," motivating them to walk-back the 30 years claim.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on November 23, 2016, 01:48:39 PM
How high is the new bridge clearance?  The Sun's article doesn't say.  If it's as low as the (newer) Wilson Bridge, it may not be politically feasible iykwim...

ixnay

The environmental documents (prepared 2009 - here (http://www.mdta.maryland.gov/Nicebridge/Documents/august14_09posting/NB_Web_Chapter2_Alternates.pdf) (.pdf)) says Vertical Clearance - Maintain existing 135-foot minimum vertical clearance over navigational channel.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: D-Dey65 on September 28, 2017, 06:11:45 PM
Quote
The Harry Nice Bridge would have needed significant repairs in the next five years if a replacement wasn’t built, according to the Transportation Authority.
When I was there last time, they were getting one, specifically some joint repairs to the southbound lane on the climb from Maryland.

Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: jwolfer on September 28, 2017, 08:52:38 PM
I am surprised that there was not a twin span built in the same era as Bay Bridge and Delaware Memorial Bridge Twinnings.

Wasn't 301 4 laned in the 1960s?

Z981

Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on September 28, 2017, 11:17:28 PM
I am surprised that there was not a twin span built in the same era as Bay Bridge and Delaware Memorial Bridge Twinnings.
Wasn't 301 4 laned in the 1960s?
Z981

Probably in the 1950s and 1960s.  Certainly was all two lanes back when the bridge was built in 1939.

First time I drove the route (VA-207 and US-301 between Bowling Green and Annapolis) was in 1970.  All was four lanes except --
-- VA-207 Bowling Green Bypass not yet built, that was built with two lanes around 1985 and was dualized around 1992.  US-301 part of bypass was four lanes already.
-- US-301 Rappahannock River bridge at Port Royal was two lane drawbridge.  New four lane bridge built in 1980.
-- US-301 Potomac River Bridge was and is two lanes.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: D-Dey65 on November 03, 2017, 08:38:59 AM
I saw the plans for it on MDTA's website, and I have to say while I'm glad they want to replace it with a four-lane version, I'm not a big fan of the design. It doesn't allow big ships to pass under it like the current version does, and it looks like a big long high overpass.

I was also a bit bothered by the fact that both lanes of the new one will be on one side of the old one, but I got over that.

Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: froggie on November 03, 2017, 09:07:10 AM
No need for "big ships" to pass through anymore...there's not much left in the way of port facilities in the D.C. area, and all Navy and shipping functions long ago moved elsewhere.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 03, 2017, 11:31:26 AM
No need for "big ships" to pass through anymore...there's not much left in the way of port facilities in the D.C. area, and all Navy and shipping functions long ago moved elsewhere.

Here's the details --
http://www.mdta.maryland.gov/Capital_Projects/Potomac_River_Bridge_Project/Documents/Nice_Bridge_Presentation_.pdf

Proposed Changes
.................................. Description of Change................................... Estimated Cost Savings
Horizontal Clearance..... Reduce clear width from 700’ to 250’............... $45 million
Vertical Clearance......... Reduce vertical clearance from 135’ to 106.5’...  $6 million
Channel Shift............... Shift C/L of channel 585’ to the west................ $52 million
....

That will still handle large vessels, just not quite as large as it is used to.  As the U.S. Coast Guard and the U.S. Navy is loathe approve any bridge design that even -might- affect future navigational needs, I'm sure that they studied this carefully before approving this design.

Actually the final approval may still be pending, as the document has this statement --
U.S. Coast Guard: No objectionable comments received on USCG “Notice to Mariners”.  USCG verbally indicated that approval is forthcoming on the “Request for Preliminary Determination”.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: 1995hoo on November 03, 2017, 12:11:31 PM
Regarding the size of ships, it seems like nowadays more often than not the only significant larger vessels to come up the Potomac are tall ships coming to Alexandria. I don't know how tall their masts usually are, but it's hard to imagine the Nice Bridge's proposed clearance of 106.5 feet would be that big of a deal. Note, also, the Washington Navy Yard is unlikely to be an issue because the new Douglass Bridge over the Anacostia River is to be a fixed span (the current one is a swing bridge); this is one reason why they had to move the USS Barry out of there when they did, so that it wouldn't get stuck upstream of the new Douglass Bridge. Having the fixed Douglass Bridge effectively means there won't be anything taller than its clearance going to or from the Navy Yard, and it's pretty certain that bridge will have a lower clearance than the new Nice Bridge will. I kind of view it from the assumption that the approval of the Douglass Bridge design is effectively an acknowledgement that the Navy Yard is no longer a navigational issue.

froggie would know better than I, but I believe there is no shipping activity from the naval facility at Indian Head. I can't enter that facility, but a look at a satellite view reveals no infrastructure for vessels. It looks as though the Dahlgren facility probably doesn't have that sort of activity either. The significant port around here is really Baltimore.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on November 03, 2017, 12:30:09 PM
Regarding the size of ships, it seems like nowadays more often than not the only significant larger vessels to come up the Potomac are tall ships coming to Alexandria. I don't know how tall their masts usually are, but it's hard to imagine the Nice Bridge's proposed clearance of 106.5 feet would be that big of a deal. Note, also, the Washington Navy Yard is unlikely to be an issue because the new Douglass Bridge over the Anacostia River is to be a fixed span (the current one is a swing bridge); this is one reason why they had to move the USS Barry out of there when they did, so that it wouldn't get stuck upstream of the new Douglass Bridge. Having the fixed Douglass Bridge effectively means there won't be anything taller than its clearance going to or from the Navy Yard, and it's pretty certain that bridge will have a lower clearance than the new Nice Bridge will. I kind of view it from the assumption that the approval of the Douglass Bridge design is effectively an acknowledgement that the Navy Yard is no longer a navigational issue.

froggie would know better than I, but I believe there is no shipping activity from the naval facility at Indian Head. I can't enter that facility, but a look at a satellite view reveals no infrastructure for vessels. It looks as though the Dahlgren facility probably doesn't have that sort of activity either. The significant port around here is really Baltimore.

There's a petroleum terminal that I think may still get some use at Piney  Point, Maryland (off of MD-249 (https://www.google.com/maps/place/Tall+Timbers,+MD+20690/@38.146251,-76.5400915,3948m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m5!3m4!1s0x89b75e7e2697167f:0x2b19d8d22db11f17!8m2!3d38.1690163!4d-76.5449559) in St. Mary's County).

There was a time when certain petroleum products (mostly home heating oil, maybe Diesel fuel) would be shipped by barge from Piney Point to a terminal on the lower Anacostia River in D.C. Those barges and tugboats would seem to fit under a lower Harry Nice Bridge. This facility was built and run by Steuart Petroleum for many years, but Steuart as a company disappeared by merger sometime in the 1990's or maybe 1980's.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on November 03, 2017, 12:33:31 PM
No need for "big ships" to pass through anymore...there's not much left in the way of port facilities in the D.C. area, and all Navy and shipping functions long ago moved elsewhere.

District of Columbia and City of Alexandria have recently  raised concerns that the lower height would make it impossible for many tall ships to call on the two cities. 
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 03, 2017, 01:38:48 PM
District of Columbia and City of Alexandria have recently  raised concerns that the lower height would make it impossible for many tall ships to call on the two cities. 

A quick search didn't find a comprehensive list of tall ships, but I found enough to see that current tall ships have heights ranging from 100 feet to 190 feet, plenty are over 135 feet.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: 1995hoo on November 03, 2017, 02:09:00 PM
District of Columbia and City of Alexandria have recently  raised concerns that the lower height would make it impossible for many tall ships to call on the two cities. 

A quick search didn't find a comprehensive list of tall ships, but I found enough to see that current tall ships have heights ranging from 100 feet to 190 feet, plenty are over 135 feet.

Thanks. I stand corrected. I had no idea they were that tall. No doubt pictures of them being dwarfed by the raised bascule spans on the new Wilson Bridge probably misled me.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 03, 2017, 04:40:50 PM
District of Columbia and City of Alexandria have recently  raised concerns that the lower height would make it impossible for many tall ships to call on the two cities. 
A quick search didn't find a comprehensive list of tall ships, but I found enough to see that current tall ships have heights ranging from 100 feet to 190 feet, plenty are over 135 feet.
Thanks. I stand corrected. I had no idea they were that tall. No doubt pictures of them being dwarfed by the raised bascule spans on the new Wilson Bridge probably misled me.

Neither did I, I had thought that 110 feet would cover all of them.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on November 05, 2017, 07:36:20 AM
A quick search didn't find a comprehensive list of tall ships, but I found enough to see that current tall ships have heights ranging from 100 feet to 190 feet, plenty are over 135 feet.

If they are over 135 feet, then the current HWN structure serves as a barrier.   Should the new HWN be lower?  Maryland seems to think so, but I believe the final decision is vested in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, with input from the U.S. Navy and U.S. Coast Guard - and presumably governments upstream from the proposed bridge have input to that process.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: froggie on November 05, 2017, 08:01:24 AM
IIRC, the Coast Guard (not the ACoE) has final approval over bridge heights given their authority regarding navigation.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on November 05, 2017, 12:14:48 PM
IIRC, the Coast Guard (not the ACoE) has final approval over bridge heights given their authority regarding navigation.

Ideally, all federal regulation of matters involving Waters of the United States would be vested in one federal agency, but that will likely never happen.

The reason I assumed Corps of Engineers was that in various controversies involving the late Robert Moses and his TBTA bridge projects, in Caro's Power Broker Moses biography, there is specific mention of the War Department (read: Corps of Engineers but probably President (and former New York Governor) Franklin D. Roosevelt) vetoing the proposal by Moses for a big bridge between Manhattan and Brooklyn (where the Hugh L. Carey (Brooklyn Battery) Tunnel now runs).
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: 1995hoo on November 05, 2017, 12:33:49 PM
The stated reason for the feds blocking the Battery Bridge project was that the Brooklyn Navy Yard was upriver from the proposed location such that the bridge could be a navigational hazard, although of course that overlooked that the Brooklyn and Manhattan Bridges already existed downstream from the Navy Yard and the Williamsburg, 59 Street, and Triboro Bridges already existed upstream.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on November 05, 2017, 03:09:12 PM
The stated reason for the feds blocking the Battery Bridge project was that the Brooklyn Navy Yard was upriver from the proposed location such that the bridge could be a navigational hazard, although of course that overlooked that the Brooklyn and Manhattan Bridges already existed downstream from the Navy Yard and the Williamsburg, 59 Street, and Triboro Bridges already existed upstream.

Absolutely correct.  But curiously, at least then, the Navy could not veto the bridge project "on its own" (presumably because the Navy did not have the legal authority) but had to get help from the War Department, which did have that power.

Caro implied that there was significant bad blood between Robert Moses and Franklin Roosevelt that dated back to Roosevelt's days as governor of New York. According to Caro, Roosevelt wanted the Taconic State Parkway constructed in part because it would improve road access to his place in New Hyde Park, N.Y., but Moses was opposed to the (long) route that now runs all the way from the I-90 N.Y. Thruway Berkshire Spur to Westchester County.  According to Caro, that bad blood came back to kill the proposal to build the bridge from the southern tip of Manhattan to Brooklyn, and the veto was ordered by FDR himself.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 05, 2017, 04:34:38 PM
A quick search didn't find a comprehensive list of tall ships, but I found enough to see that current tall ships have heights ranging from 100 feet to 190 feet, plenty are over 135 feet.
If they are over 135 feet, then the current HWN structure serves as a barrier.   Should the new HWN be lower?  Maryland seems to think so, but I believe the final decision is vested in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, with input from the U.S. Navy and U.S. Coast Guard - and presumably governments upstream from the proposed bridge have input to that process.

I attended the Commonwealth Transportation Board workshop meeting in Richmond today, and one of the agenda items is authorizing the $14.5 million that VDOT will give to MDTA to fund the improvements to the Virginia approach and to giving authorization to MDTA to administer the portions of the project that are in Virginia.  The CTB has not yet provided the authorization.

"Action on Delegation of Authority for Commissioner of Highways to Enter into and Execute Agreements with the Maryland Transportation Authority and Other Entities Relating to the Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge Improvement Project."

Discussion occurred about the reduction in vertical navigational clearance.  This point was made, and they don't yet have the answer -- given that Maryland owns the river and the bridge and are the party that will negotiate an agreement with the federal government concerning vertical navigational clearance, did they consult with Virginia as to whether they may have knowledge of any proposed industrial developments in Virginia that might be impacted by the reduction in vertical navigational clearance?
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: froggie on December 05, 2017, 07:34:08 PM
They wouldn't necessarily need to consult with Virginia.  MdTA would be consulting with the Coast Guard which ultimately sets navigational requirements and clearances.  And if Virginia was proposing such industrial developments that would require a certain ship size, it'd be up to Virginia to notify the Coast Guard.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 05, 2017, 07:58:18 PM
They wouldn't necessarily need to consult with Virginia.  MdTA would be consulting with the Coast Guard which ultimately sets navigational requirements and clearances.  And if Virginia was proposing such industrial developments that would require a certain ship size, it'd be up to Virginia to notify the Coast Guard.

The document posted earlier in the thread is comprehensive but doesn't go into any detail about the "Stakeholder Coordination" that led to the reduced clearances.
http://www.mdta.maryland.gov/Capital_Projects/Potomac_River_Bridge_Project/Documents/Nice_Bridge_Presentation_.pdf

It did say this, but such an inquiry might not necessarily have reached all industrial concerns --
U.S. Coast Guard: No objectionable comments received on USCG “Notice to Mariners”.  USCG verbally indicated that approval is forthcoming on the “Request for Preliminary Determination”.

I would hope that the three jurisdictions (MD, DC, VA) have been working together on this design.  At the CTB meeting it didn't sound like VA had been involved much yet, but it certainly will be fully involved soon, and before they give authorization to build the approaches.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on December 06, 2017, 12:46:19 AM
I would hope that the three jurisdictions (MD, DC, VA) have been working together on this design.  At the CTB meeting it didn't sound like VA had been involved much yet, but it certainly will be fully involved soon, and before they give authorization to build the approaches.

I head representatives of the City of Alexandria express unhappiness with the lower bridge height because it could deter tall ships from being able to reach Old Town.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 06, 2017, 07:19:35 AM
I would hope that the three jurisdictions (MD, DC, VA) have been working together on this design.  At the CTB meeting it didn't sound like VA had been involved much yet, but it certainly will be fully involved soon, and before they give authorization to build the approaches.
I head representatives of the City of Alexandria express unhappiness with the lower bridge height because it could deter tall ships from being able to reach Old Town.

But as posted earlier many tall ships are taller than the current 135 feet clearance.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on December 06, 2017, 03:02:48 PM
But as posted earlier many tall ships are taller than the current 135 feet clearance.

I do not know what or how the tall ships make it past the existing HWN, but I know that they have done so, because I have seen them in the Potomac north of the Wilson Bridge (I think this might have been before the  Wilson  was replaced, but no matter, the HWN has stood where it is since before it opened to traffic in 1940).
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 06, 2017, 03:32:16 PM
But as posted earlier many tall ships are taller than the current 135 feet clearance.
I do not know what or how the tall ships make it past the existing HWN, but I know that they have done so, because I have seen them in the Potomac north of the Wilson Bridge (I think this might have been before the  Wilson  was replaced, but no matter, the HWN has stood where it is since before it opened to traffic in 1940).

I would presume that they make the trip by tow and not by sail, so no sails would be deployed on the masts.  The masts could be partly or fully taken down if there was sufficient need or desire to pass under an obstacle such as a bridge or power lines.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: froggie on December 06, 2017, 03:52:53 PM
Some tall ships and ship replicas (such as the French Hermione (https://www.hermione.com/en/home/) or the Bounty before she sank during Sandy) have auxiliary engines installed so that they can move if needed while not under sail.  Such ships would not need to be towed.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 06, 2017, 04:41:52 PM
Some tall ships and ship replicas (such as the French Hermione (https://www.hermione.com/en/home/) or the Bounty before she sank during Sandy) have auxiliary engines installed so that they can move if needed while not under sail.  Such ships would not need to be towed.

I had thought of that, that at least in the case of replicas, they would be modern constructions that could easily have been built with a small diesel engine for inboard power for docking and for times when there is insufficient winds.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on December 07, 2017, 06:58:28 AM
Some tall ships and ship replicas (such as the French Hermione (https://www.hermione.com/en/home/) or the Bounty before she sank during Sandy) have auxiliary engines installed so that they can move if needed while not under sail.  Such ships would not need to be towed.

The USCGC Eagle (WIX-327) has visited.  Her masts are apparently too high to pass under the HWN, so I suppose the  Coast Guard has a way of dealing with that (and yes, she does have a Diesel engine for propulsion when desired).

She was in Alexandria earlier this year (details (https://www.visitalexandriava.com/tall-ship-eagle/)).
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 07, 2017, 07:22:42 AM
The USCGC Eagle (WIX-327) has visited.  Her masts are apparently too high to pass under the HWN, so I suppose the  Coast Guard has a way of dealing with that (and yes, she does have a Diesel engine for propulsion when desired).
She was in Alexandria earlier this year (details (https://www.visitalexandriava.com/tall-ship-eagle/)).

http://www.cga.edu/eagle.aspx?id=689
Height of mainmast - 147.3 feet
Height of foremast - 147.3 feet
Height of mizzenmast - 132.0 feet

Obviously if it got to Alexandria the masts must be at least partly retractable.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on February 09, 2018, 12:08:48 AM
The USCGC Eagle (WIX-327) has visited.  Her masts are apparently too high to pass under the HWN, so I suppose the  Coast Guard has a way of dealing with that (and yes, she does have a Diesel engine for propulsion when desired).
She was in Alexandria earlier this year (details (https://www.visitalexandriava.com/tall-ship-eagle/)).
http://www.cga.edu/eagle.aspx?id=689
Height of mainmast - 147.3 feet
Height of foremast - 147.3 feet
Height of mizzenmast - 132.0 feet
Obviously if it got to Alexandria the masts must be at least partly retractable.

Now they are proposing 135 feet of vertical navigational clearance, and in order to save costs they are proposing 2-foot shoulders rather than the 10-foot right shoulders previously proposed.

Slide show -- http://www.mdta.maryland.gov/Capital_Projects/NewNiceBridgeProject/Home

There is a button for a comment page, I submitted a comment, please do likewise.

"Great new bridge project that I support, with 4 lanes and 135 feet of vertical navigational clearance. I support all elements except -- in order to save costs you are proposing 2-foot shoulders rather than the 10-foot right shoulders previously proposed.  You cited the Key and Hatem bridges as similar examples, but these are 50+ year old designs.  Today's requirements for a 4-lane high speed highway bridge should include 10-foot right shoulders for safety and capacity reasons.  Please include 10-foot right shoulders."
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: jwolfer on February 10, 2018, 11:32:43 AM
The USCGC Eagle (WIX-327) has visited.  Her masts are apparently too high to pass under the HWN, so I suppose the  Coast Guard has a way of dealing with that (and yes, she does have a Diesel engine for propulsion when desired).
She was in Alexandria earlier this year (details (https://www.visitalexandriava.com/tall-ship-eagle/)).
http://www.cga.edu/eagle.aspx?id=689
Height of mainmast - 147.3 feet
Height of foremast - 147.3 feet
Height of mizzenmast - 132.0 feet
Obviously if it got to Alexandria the masts must be at least partly retractable.

Now they are proposing 135 feet of vertical navigational clearance, and in order to save costs they are proposing 2-foot shoulders rather than the 10-foot right shoulders previously proposed.

Slide show -- http://www.mdta.maryland.gov/Capital_Projects/NewNiceBridgeProject/Home

There is a button for a comment page, I submitted a comment, please do likewise.

"Great new bridge project that I support, with 4 lanes and 135 feet of vertical navigational clearance. I support all elements except -- in order to save costs you are proposing 2-foot shoulders rather than the 10-foot right shoulders previously proposed.  You cited the Key and Hatem bridges as similar examples, but these are 50+ year old designs.  Today's requirements for a 4-lane high speed highway bridge should include 10-foot right shoulders for safety and capacity reasons.  Please include 10-foot right shoulders."
And there is a toll on the bridge, it has been making money since built and will continue making money.



Z981

Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on February 10, 2018, 01:41:22 PM
And there is a toll on the bridge, it has been making money since built and will continue making money.

Increasing from 2 lanes to 4 lanes will allow the traffic to grow considerably, thus increasing the toll revenues.

I see that MDTA will also instituted all-electronic tolling (AET) primarily thru E-ZPass and secondarily thru video license plate reading on the new bridge.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on February 11, 2018, 12:58:08 PM
There is a button for a comment page, I submitted a comment, please do likewise.

"Great new bridge project that I support, with 4 lanes and 135 feet of vertical navigational clearance. I support all elements except -- in order to save costs you are proposing 2-foot shoulders rather than the 10-foot right shoulders previously proposed.  You cited the Key and Hatem bridges as similar examples, but these are 50+ year old designs.  Today's requirements for a 4-lane high speed highway bridge should include 10-foot right shoulders for safety and capacity reasons.  Please include 10-foot right shoulders."

I do not feel that it is appropriate for me to submit a comment, but I agree with you.   There should be shoulders there for the benefit of motorized traffic, and to allow bikes to cross without needing to be shuttled (the next bridge upstream is the Woodrow Wilson Bridge, which does have a good bike and pedestrian trail adjacent).   But that's a long distance upstream from the site of the HWN.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on February 11, 2018, 03:06:17 PM
There is a button for a comment page, I submitted a comment, please do likewise.
"Great new bridge project that I support, with 4 lanes and 135 feet of vertical navigational clearance. I support all elements except -- in order to save costs you are proposing 2-foot shoulders rather than the 10-foot right shoulders previously proposed.  You cited the Key and Hatem bridges as similar examples, but these are 50+ year old designs.  Today's requirements for a 4-lane high speed highway bridge should include 10-foot right shoulders for safety and capacity reasons.  Please include 10-foot right shoulders."
I do not feel that it is appropriate for me to submit a comment, but I agree with you.   There should be shoulders there for the benefit of motorized traffic, and to allow bikes to cross without needing to be shuttled (the next bridge upstream is the Woodrow Wilson Bridge, which does have a good bike and pedestrian trail adjacent).   But that's a long distance upstream from the site of the HWN.

I submitted written comments on VDOT projects when I worked for VDOT, but I stopped short of ever giving a spoken comment at a public hearing.  As a citizen I felt the right to submit written comments.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on May 25, 2018, 06:23:00 PM
The MDTA is holding two pre-bid conferences for the HWN replacement project, one in Waldorf, Charles County, Maryland (Wednesday, June 6, 2018) and one in Dahlgren, King George County, Virginia (Tuesday, June 12, 2018).

Details can be viewed on the EMaryland Marketplace site here (https://emaryland.buyspeed.com/bso/external/bidDetail.sdo?docId=MDJ0731037794&external=true&parentUrl=bid).

If the link above does not work visit the project's Web site here (http://mdta.maryland.gov/Capital_Projects/NewNiceBridgeProject/Home) (has much of the same information as the EMaryland Marketplace site). 
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: skluth on June 06, 2018, 12:13:36 PM
The stated reason for the feds blocking the Battery Bridge project was that the Brooklyn Navy Yard was upriver from the proposed location such that the bridge could be a navigational hazard, although of course that overlooked that the Brooklyn and Manhattan Bridges already existed downstream from the Navy Yard and the Williamsburg, 59 Street, and Triboro Bridges already existed upstream.

Absolutely correct.  But curiously, at least then, the Navy could not veto the bridge project "on its own" (presumably because the Navy did not have the legal authority) but had to get help from the War Department, which did have that power.

Caro implied that there was significant bad blood between Robert Moses and Franklin Roosevelt that dated back to Roosevelt's days as governor of New York. According to Caro, Roosevelt wanted the Taconic State Parkway constructed in part because it would improve road access to his place in New Hyde Park, N.Y., but Moses was opposed to the (long) route that now runs all the way from the I-90 N.Y. Thruway Berkshire Spur to Westchester County.  According to Caro, that bad blood came back to kill the proposal to build the bridge from the southern tip of Manhattan to Brooklyn, and the veto was ordered by FDR himself.

It's more than a navigation hazard. The Navy doesn't allow any bridges in Hampton Roads because a bridge can be bombed which would trap the fleet in Norfolk and prevent access to the Norfolk Navy Yard in Portsmouth. No bridges can be built between the Navy Yard, the shipyard in Newport News, and the Atlantic. http://www.roadstothefuture.com/Bridge_Tunnels_VA.html
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on June 06, 2018, 04:33:17 PM
It's more than a navigation hazard. The Navy doesn't allow any bridges in Hampton Roads because a bridge can be bombed which would trap the fleet in Norfolk and prevent access to the Norfolk Navy Yard in Portsmouth. No bridges can be built between the Navy Yard, the shipyard in Newport News, and the Atlantic. http://www.roadstothefuture.com/Bridge_Tunnels_VA.html

As the author of that article, which was last updated 14 years ago, I could add that some of the recent alternates for expanding the Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel were for a high-level bridge.  The Navy may or may not go along with something like that today.  The selected alternate for HRBT expansion is another bridge-tunnel.

As I pointed out in the article, there are 4 separate factors that each militate against a bridge
1)  A high-level bridge crossing near the Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel or at the Elizabeth River crossing would conflict with the required aerial clear zone of the Norfolk Naval Air Station.
2) The Navy historically has opposed a high level bridge over channels used by their ships in the Hampton Roads area, in case the bridge was collapsed.
3) Concern by the Hampton Roads Maritime Association that a high level bridge may limit ship size and hinder future access to the ports of Hampton Roads.
4) For HRBT the high level bridge approach grades on the north side will have to begin inland a mile or more from the shoreline to conform with Interstate design requirements.

Another benefit of a tunnel is that it provides a mile or more of unobstructed horizontal clearance, rather than the 1,600 to 2,000 feet that would be typical for a suspension or cable-stayed bridge.

Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: froggie on June 06, 2018, 09:06:18 PM
Quote
1)  A high-level bridge crossing near the Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel or at the Elizabeth River crossing would conflict with the required aerial clear zone of the Norfolk Naval Air Station.

How so?  The Chambers Field runway is east-west, while the HRBT is to the north of the runway.

The other three reasons are legit, but this one just sounds foolish.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on June 06, 2018, 09:19:50 PM
Quote
1)  A high-level bridge crossing near the Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel or at the Elizabeth River crossing would conflict with the required aerial clear zone of the Norfolk Naval Air Station.
How so?  The Chambers Field runway is east-west, while the HRBT is to the north of the runway.
The other three reasons are legit, but this one just sounds foolish.

Aircraft can use various flight paths as they approach an airport before they line up with a runway, and use various flight paths after takeoff.  The speed of jet aircraft cause these Terminal Control Areas to be large.  In wartime the air traffic may be quite heavy and chaotic at times.

Looks like the Terminal Control Area for Norfolk NAS encompasses most of the HRBT.
http://vfrmap.com/?type=vfrc&lat=36.937&lon=-76.289&zoom=10

Bridge towers would be about 400 feet tall, and the Navy may have some definite objections to that.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on June 07, 2018, 10:07:31 PM
As the author of that article, which was last updated 14 years ago, I could add that some of the recent alternates for expanding the Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel were for a high-level bridge.  The Navy may or may not go along with something like that today.  The selected alternate for HRBT expansion is another bridge-tunnel.

VDOT and friends made the right choice with the added capacity being a bridge-tunnel.  As I read it, the new capacity will mean that the HRBT will no  longer be a barrier for trucks and semitrailers higher than 13' 6" which is the current height limit for I-64 westbound truck traffic. 

Carriers of HAZMAT cargo will still be banned, but IMO they usually represent a fairly small percentage of truck traffic, and can cross upstream via the U.S. 17/U.S. 258 James River Bridge between Isle of Wight County and Newport News (IIRC, no HAZMAT restrictions there), or just follow U.S. 460 or U.S. 58 to get to and from the I-95 or I-85 corridors if they are on the south side of Hampton Roads.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on June 07, 2018, 10:31:18 PM
VDOT and friends made the right choice with the added capacity being a bridge-tunnel.  As I read it, the new capacity will mean that the HRBT will no  longer be a barrier for trucks and semitrailers higher than 13' 6" which is the current height limit for I-64 westbound truck traffic. 

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.   :rolleyes:
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Alps on June 08, 2018, 01:30:14 AM
VDOT and friends made the right choice with the added capacity being a bridge-tunnel.  As I read it, the new capacity will mean that the HRBT will no  longer be a barrier for trucks and semitrailers higher than 13' 6" which is the current height limit for I-64 westbound truck traffic. 

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.   :rolleyes:
Unless VDOT realized what's going on and allowed them through the HOT tube.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on June 08, 2018, 06:16:08 AM
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: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: ixnay on June 09, 2018, 06:32:54 PM
3) Concern by the Hampton Roads Maritime Association that a high level bridge may limit ship size and hinder future access to the ports of Hampton Roads.

A concern that the Baltimore port interests apparently did not partake of when that state's Bay Bridge(s) and Key Bridge were being planned.  I've yet to hear demands for a tunnel at whatever site is chosen for a third Bay Bridge in MD, either.

ixnay
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on June 09, 2018, 08:16:18 PM
3) Concern by the Hampton Roads Maritime Association that a high level bridge may limit ship size and hinder future access to the ports of Hampton Roads.
A concern that the Baltimore port interests apparently did not partake of when that state's Bay Bridge(s) and Key Bridge were being planned.  I've yet to hear demands for a tunnel at whatever site is chosen for a third Bay Bridge in MD, either.
ixnay

The planning for the Bay Bridge was in the late 1940s.  Commercial ships were smaller back then and 180 feet of vertical navigational clearance was deemed plenty adequate.  The second bridge was planned in the late 1960s, and there wasn't any advocate for more clearance then either.  Once that bridge existed, unless they are going to replace the whole thing with a tunnel (and they are not) then there is no reason why not to build bridges upstream of there.

As I pointed out previously, there are 4 separate factors that militate against a bridge across Hampton Roads, not just one or two or three.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on November 21, 2019, 05:12:19 PM
Looks like a joint venture led by Skanska is the winning bidder to replace the HWN, and there will not be a bike/ped trail built with the four new lanes for motorized traffic.
 
MDTA press release:  MDTA BOARD UNANIMOUSLY APPROVES TOLL MODERNIZATION PACKAGE SAVING CUSTOMERS $28 MILLION OVER 5 YEARS (https://mdta.maryland.gov/blog-category/mdta-news-releases/mdta-board-unanimously-approves-toll-modernization-package-saving?fbclid=IwAR1tlzKqTjUY2K46yGmi3CVxmB7dvRb_FEBx7o_TigjZJETHVrSxFHcqWtU)

Quote
MDTA approves contract for Nice/Middleton Bridge

Quote
The Board also approved a $463 million contract for Skanska-Corman-McLean (SCM) Joint Venture to design and build the new US 301 bridge to replace the Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial/Senator Thomas “Mac” Middleton Bridge over the Potomac River, which is used by about 18,000 vehicles daily. The project is one of the state’s largest transportation initiatives and will improve mobility, safety and economic opportunities for southern Maryland, northeastern Virginia and the region. Virginia will contribute $13 million to the project.

Quote
“We’re implementing a major infrastructure project that’s affordable, invests in safety and will improve our citizens’ quality of life today – not years down the road,” said MDTA Chairman and Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) Secretary Pete K. Rahn.

Quote
The Hogan Administration has long committed to building a new, wider and safer bridge to replace the 1.9-mile Nice/Middleton span, which opened in December 1940 and connects Charles County, Md., to King George County, Va. The project will replace the existing two-lane bridge with a new, four-lane span that will be aligned with the existing roadway approaches in Maryland and Virginia. The four, 12-foot-wide lanes with 2-foot shoulders will double capacity and improve safety, enhancing emergency response and maintenance/inspection activities.

Quote
SCM, a joint venture comprised of firms with local ties, had the highest rated proposal and the lowest bid price for the project. Construction will begin in early 2020 and will create more than 500 jobs. The new bridge is expected to open by 2023. The height of the new span will accommodate tall vessels, and it will have all-electronic (cashless) tolling. The bridge will have a 100-year service life.

Quote
The MDTA had previously offered to make repairs to the bridge and turn it over to Charles County for a pedestrian/bicycle crossing, but county officials declined the offer. Due to Charles County’s decision, the existing bridge now will be demolished as part of this approved contract.

Quote
As part of the procurement process, MDTA requested a bid option to add a separated bicycle/pedestrian path to the new structure. The proposal from SCM would cost an additional $64 million for a separated path with limited daily use. After a thorough discussion and analysis, as well as public testimony, the board voted instead to move forward with a project to improve safety and capacity for thousands along the I-95 corridor.

Quote
To expand practical access, the new Nice/Middleton Bridge will include several safety enhancements for bicyclists, including bicycle-friendly roadway joints and intelligent transportation systems tools such as lighting and signage.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on November 21, 2019, 05:25:43 PM
The four, 12-foot-wide lanes with 2-foot shoulders will double capacity and improve safety, enhancing emergency response and maintenance/inspection activities.
2 foot shoulders... Wow.

What a joke - that's how Maryland saves some money by eliminating a major safety feature on a high-rise bridge, on a heavily used roadway.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: jeffandnicole on November 21, 2019, 07:19:10 PM
The four, 12-foot-wide lanes with 2-foot shoulders will double capacity and improve safety, enhancing emergency response and maintenance/inspection activities.
2 foot shoulders... Wow.

What a joke - that's how Maryland saves some money by eliminating a major safety feature on a high-rise bridge, on a heavily used roadway.

And going back to CP's last quoted paragraph, by "bicycle-safe", do they mean bikes will be riding in the bridges's travel lanes or on that 2 foot shoulder?
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on November 21, 2019, 07:57:16 PM
And going back to CP's last quoted paragraph, by "bicycle-safe", do they mean bikes will be riding in the bridges's travel lanes or on that 2 foot shoulder?

IMO that is a bad, bad idea. 

Allowing bikes on that new bridge (without a barrier-separated trail/path) will (again, IMO) almost mean certainly mean that there will be fatal crashes involving bikes. 
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Alps on November 21, 2019, 08:05:27 PM
And going back to CP's last quoted paragraph, by "bicycle-safe", do they mean bikes will be riding in the bridges's travel lanes or on that 2 foot shoulder?

IMO that is a bad, bad idea. 

Allowing bikes on that new bridge (without a barrier-separated trail/path) will (again, IMO) almost mean certainly mean that there will be fatal crashes involving bikes. 
Waiting for an advocacy group to sue and force their hand.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cl94 on November 21, 2019, 08:12:25 PM
And going back to CP's last quoted paragraph, by "bicycle-safe", do they mean bikes will be riding in the bridges's travel lanes or on that 2 foot shoulder?

IMO that is a bad, bad idea. 

Allowing bikes on that new bridge (without a barrier-separated trail/path) will (again, IMO) almost mean certainly mean that there will be fatal crashes involving bikes. 
Waiting for an advocacy group to sue and force their hand.

I give it 6 months.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on November 21, 2019, 08:35:50 PM
And going back to CP's last quoted paragraph, by "bicycle-safe", do they mean bikes will be riding in the bridges's travel lanes or on that 2 foot shoulder?

IMO that is a bad, bad idea. 

Allowing bikes on that new bridge (without a barrier-separated trail/path) will (again, IMO) almost mean certainly mean that there will be fatal crashes involving bikes.
Not to mention, they're worried about cost, but it's a toll financed bridge. Any extra costs would just be picked up by tolls, ditto with adding shoulders which should be a standard feature.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cl94 on November 21, 2019, 08:39:11 PM
Not to mention, they're worried about cost, but it's a toll financed bridge. Any extra costs would just be picked up by tolls, ditto with adding shoulders which should be a standard feature.

Larry Hogan kept blocking it because of the "cost", so they had an incentive to cut the cost so they get a replacement before it falls down.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on November 21, 2019, 08:42:41 PM
Not to mention, they're worried about cost, but it's a toll financed bridge. Any extra costs would just be picked up by tolls, ditto with adding shoulders which should be a standard feature.

Larry Hogan kept blocking it because of the "cost", so they had an incentive to cut the cost so they get a replacement before it falls down.
Bad idea in the long-run. They are building a bridge to serve the next 100 years on a major north-south arterial corridor between two states, and they're designing it with a narrow cross section with practically no shoulder and no bike/pedestrian accommodations.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 22, 2019, 06:01:03 AM
Quote
MDTA approves contract for Nice/Middleton Bridge
The Board also approved a $463 million contract for Skanska-Corman-McLean (SCM) Joint Venture to design and build the new US 301 bridge to replace the Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial/Senator Thomas “Mac” Middleton Bridge over the Potomac River, which is used by about 18,000 vehicles daily. The project is one of the state’s largest transportation initiatives and will improve mobility, safety and economic opportunities for southern Maryland, northeastern Virginia and the region.
That bid is far below the $750 million estimate, which is good news.  They should go ahead and provide full shoulders.  Use a work order to add that design and construction to the contract that was just awarded.

Was there a competitive bid process or was this a sole source design-build contract award?  Sounds like the latter.
 
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: hbelkins on November 22, 2019, 11:02:04 AM
The Navy doesn't allow any bridges in Hampton Roads because a bridge can be bombed which would trap the fleet in Norfolk and prevent access to the Norfolk Navy Yard in Portsmouth. No bridges can be built between the Navy Yard, the shipyard in Newport News, and the Atlantic. http://www.roadstothefuture.com/Bridge_Tunnels_VA.html

Under what authority? Where's the relevant statute that would prohibit the state from building a bridge?
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 22, 2019, 11:31:04 AM
The Navy doesn't allow any bridges in Hampton Roads because a bridge can be bombed which would trap the fleet in Norfolk and prevent access to the Norfolk Navy Yard in Portsmouth. No bridges can be built between the Navy Yard, the shipyard in Newport News, and the Atlantic. http://www.roadstothefuture.com/Bridge_Tunnels_VA.html
Under what authority? Where's the relevant statute that would prohibit the state from building a bridge
Federal government, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Coast Guard. 

They get to approve or deny building of structures that impact marine navigation.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Duke87 on November 22, 2019, 11:43:40 AM
The Navy doesn't allow any bridges in Hampton Roads because a bridge can be bombed which would trap the fleet in Norfolk and prevent access to the Norfolk Navy Yard in Portsmouth. No bridges can be built between the Navy Yard, the shipyard in Newport News, and the Atlantic. http://www.roadstothefuture.com/Bridge_Tunnels_VA.html

Under what authority? Where's the relevant statute that would prohibit the state from building a bridge?

Section 9 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899, the General Bridge Act of 1946, and... a few other miscellaneous laws and amendments thereto.

The short if it is that in order to build a crossing of any navigable waterway, you need a permit from the US Coast Guard (https://www.dco.uscg.mil/Portals/9/DCO%20Documents/5pw/Office%20of%20Bridge%20Programs/COAST%20GUARD%20BRIDGE%20PERMITTING_August2016.pdf?ver=2017-06-23-123008-217).

As part of the permitting process, they have the authority to set vertical clearance requirements for said structures, which by proxy means they can if they deem fit require that the crossing be a tunnel.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: jeffandnicole on November 22, 2019, 01:20:27 PM
The Navy doesn't allow any bridges in Hampton Roads because a bridge can be bombed which would trap the fleet in Norfolk and prevent access to the Norfolk Navy Yard in Portsmouth. No bridges can be built between the Navy Yard, the shipyard in Newport News, and the Atlantic. http://www.roadstothefuture.com/Bridge_Tunnels_VA.html

Under what authority? Where's the relevant statute that would prohibit the state from building a bridge?

Section 9 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899, the General Bridge Act of 1946, and... a few other miscellaneous laws and amendments thereto.

The short if it is that in order to build a crossing of any navigable waterway, you need a permit from the US Coast Guard (https://www.dco.uscg.mil/Portals/9/DCO%20Documents/5pw/Office%20of%20Bridge%20Programs/COAST%20GUARD%20BRIDGE%20PERMITTING_August2016.pdf?ver=2017-06-23-123008-217).

As part of the permitting process, they have the authority to set vertical clearance requirements for said structures, which by proxy means they can if they deem fit require that the crossing be a tunnel.


For what it's worth, the US's ability to move around and handle a battle has changed a lot from 1899 and even from 1946. 

Wanna trap some ships now?  There's a whole lotta fighter jets out there that'll take care of the initiator within minutes.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 22, 2019, 04:28:01 PM
For what it's worth, the US's ability to move around and handle a battle has changed a lot from 1899 and even from 1946. 
Wanna trap some ships now?  There's a whole lotta fighter jets out there that'll take care of the initiator within minutes.
How about a cargo ship getting commandeered by foreign powers and rammed into one of the main towers, as in the old Sunshine Skyway Bridge (which of course was accidental in that case)?

Torpedoes, or ballistic missiles, launched by submarine? 
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 22, 2019, 04:59:15 PM
The short if it is that in order to build a crossing of any navigable waterway, you need a permit from the US Coast Guard (https://www.dco.uscg.mil/Portals/9/DCO%20Documents/5pw/Office%20of%20Bridge%20Programs/COAST%20GUARD%20BRIDGE%20PERMITTING_August2016.pdf?ver=2017-06-23-123008-217).
As part of the permitting process, they have the authority to set vertical clearance requirements for said structures, which by proxy means they can if they deem fit require that the crossing be a tunnel.
Horizontal clearances as well.

That is another advantage of tunnels, 4,000 to 6,000 feet of horizontal navigational clearance in the case of I-64, I-664 and CBBT.

Bridges get really expensive when the main span gets longer than the 1,500 to 2,000 foot range.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: jeffandnicole on November 22, 2019, 05:07:16 PM
For what it's worth, the US's ability to move around and handle a battle has changed a lot from 1899 and even from 1946. 
Wanna trap some ships now?  There's a whole lotta fighter jets out there that'll take care of the initiator within minutes.
How about a cargo ship getting commandeered by foreign powers and rammed into one of the main towers, as in the old Sunshine Skyway Bridge (which of course was accidental in that case)?

Torpedoes, or ballistic missiles, launched by submarine? 

Might as well never build a bridge anywhere if we're gonna bring up every hypothetical scenerio.

If a cargo ship was commandeered, there's probably gonna be sufficient time before that ship was near a bridge unless they managed to secretly take it over just before the bridge.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 22, 2019, 05:11:22 PM
For what it's worth, the US's ability to move around and handle a battle has changed a lot from 1899 and even from 1946. 
Wanna trap some ships now?  There's a whole lotta fighter jets out there that'll take care of the initiator within minutes.
How about a cargo ship getting commandeered by foreign powers and rammed into one of the main towers, as in the old Sunshine Skyway Bridge (which of course was accidental in that case)?
Torpedoes, or ballistic missiles, launched by submarine? 
Might as well never build a bridge anywhere if we're gonna bring up every hypothetical scenerio.
If a cargo ship was commandeered, there's probably gonna be sufficient time before that ship was near a bridge unless they managed to secretly take it over just before the bridge.
21st Century threats.

The cargo ship example assumes that nobody suspects it is not under normal harbor pilot control until it crashes into the bridge tower.

The outcome would be the bottling up of every Navy ship in the main east coast naval base and shipyards, plus the civil marine terminals.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cl94 on November 22, 2019, 05:34:28 PM
Might as well never build a bridge anywhere if we're gonna bring up every hypothetical scenerio.

Maybe he was doing what he implied HRTPO was doing here (https://www.aaroads.com/forum/index.php?topic=18354.msg2445167#msg2445167).  :-D

(kidding, kidding, but it was quite the outlandish response given that it hasn't happened).

But back on topic...

The Navy doesn't allow any bridges in Hampton Roads because a bridge can be bombed which would trap the fleet in Norfolk and prevent access to the Norfolk Navy Yard in Portsmouth. No bridges can be built between the Navy Yard, the shipyard in Newport News, and the Atlantic. http://www.roadstothefuture.com/Bridge_Tunnels_VA.html

Under what authority? Where's the relevant statute that would prohibit the state from building a bridge?

Section 9 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899, the General Bridge Act of 1946, and... a few other miscellaneous laws and amendments thereto.

The short if it is that in order to build a crossing of any navigable waterway, you need a permit from the US Coast Guard (https://www.dco.uscg.mil/Portals/9/DCO%20Documents/5pw/Office%20of%20Bridge%20Programs/COAST%20GUARD%20BRIDGE%20PERMITTING_August2016.pdf?ver=2017-06-23-123008-217).

As part of the permitting process, they have the authority to set vertical clearance requirements for said structures, which by proxy means they can if they deem fit require that the crossing be a tunnel.


There's quite a bit of precedent for the Coast Guard setting high vertical clearance requirements or limiting traffic across a crossing in order to ensure a certain level of water movements are possible. Amtrak and commuter rail operators are constrained by this in a few places, most notably Connecticut.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on November 22, 2019, 10:16:22 PM
WTOP Radio: Maryland approves narrower Nice Bridge replacement option (https://wtop.com/dc-transit/2019/11/maryland-approves-narrower-nice-bridge-replacement-option/)

Quote
The new Nice-Middleton Bridge between Maryland and Virginia will be significantly slimmed down from originally promised plans.

Quote
The Maryland Transportation Authority Board voted Thursday to approve a $463 million construction contract for a new U.S. 301 bridge that will have two lanes in each direction for car traffic, but little else.

Quote
Virginia is contributing $13 million to the project for the pieces on the Virginia side of the river.

Quote
The current 1.7-mile bridge that opened in 1940 is only one lane each way. It cost $5 million to build over nearly three years.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 22, 2019, 11:25:21 PM
WTOP Radio: Maryland approves narrower Nice Bridge replacement option (https://wtop.com/dc-transit/2019/11/maryland-approves-narrower-nice-bridge-replacement-option/)
Quote
The new Nice-Middleton Bridge between Maryland and Virginia will be significantly slimmed down from originally promised plans.
Quote
The Maryland Transportation Authority Board voted Thursday to approve a $463 million construction contract for a new U.S. 301 bridge that will have two lanes in each direction for car traffic, but little else.
Again, far below the engineer's estimate of $750 million.

Why not revise the design and re-award, or add a work order to the contract to include the design with the 10-foot right shoulders?
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Alps on November 23, 2019, 01:14:14 AM
WTOP Radio: Maryland approves narrower Nice Bridge replacement option (https://wtop.com/dc-transit/2019/11/maryland-approves-narrower-nice-bridge-replacement-option/)
Quote
The new Nice-Middleton Bridge between Maryland and Virginia will be significantly slimmed down from originally promised plans.
Quote
The Maryland Transportation Authority Board voted Thursday to approve a $463 million construction contract for a new U.S. 301 bridge that will have two lanes in each direction for car traffic, but little else.
Again, far below the engineer's estimate of $750 million.

Why not revise the design and re-award, or add a work order to the contract to include the design with the 10-foot right shoulders?
If this is a construction contract, they're not going back to design.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 23, 2019, 05:08:40 AM
Quote
The Maryland Transportation Authority Board voted Thursday to approve a $463 million construction contract for a new U.S. 301 bridge that will have two lanes in each direction for car traffic, but little else.
Again, far below the engineer's estimate of $750 million.
Why not revise the design and re-award, or add a work order to the contract to include the design with the 10-foot right shoulders?
If this is a construction contract, they're not going back to design.
The reports said it was design-build.  I still have the question about whether it was bid competitively or was a sole-source contract.

The ideal time to revise the design would have been before the award, then to rebid.

A work order is a possibility but it would be a big one. 

The VA-648 overpass and connecting roadway was a work order added to the I-95 contract under construction for 5 miles of Interstate highway plus the VA-40 interchange and bypass.  The awarded design had the easterly service road dead-ending 3 miles south of where it connected to VA-40.  A work order was issued to revise the design and add almost a mile of roadway plus the overpass bridge, to connect the easterly service road to US-301 on the west side of I-95.  Source:  I was a construction inspector on the project.

Granted a Nice Bridge work order would be far larger than that one, probably looking at $100 million or more.
 
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 23, 2019, 05:29:01 AM
The news release did mention a bid option (not selected) for a bicycle/pedestrian path --
https://mdta.maryland.gov/Capital_Projects/NewNiceBridgeProject/Home

As part of the procurement process, MDTA requested a bid option to add a separated bicycle/pedestrian path to the new structure.  The proposal from SCM would cost an additional $64 million for a separated path with limited daily use.  After a thorough discussion and analysis, as well as public testimony, the board voted instead to move forward with a project to improve safety and capacity for thousands along the I-95 corridor.
 
To expand practical access, the new Nice/Middleton Bridge will include several safety enhancements for bicyclists, including bicycle-friendly roadway joints and intelligent transportation systems tools such as lighting and signage.

. . . . . . . .

Not a good idea to allow bikes to use the bridge with only a 2-foot shoulder, somebody is going to have to get shoveled up.

Just 3 years ago they allocated $756 million to construct the project --
https://mdta.maryland.gov/blog-category/mdta-news-releases/governor-larry-hogan-announces-765-million-new-harry-w-nice-memorial-bridge
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: froggie on November 23, 2019, 12:30:03 PM
Some of the arguments against a separate bike/ped path on the Nice Bridge were also used against building one on the new Wilson Bridge.  Granted, the Wilson Bridge is in a major metropolitan area and there was nearby bike infrastructure on at least one side.  That said, both Prince George County and even Charles County to a degree have (separately) discussed improving bike accommodations along the 301 corridor.  A path on the Nice Bridge would have greatly improved that and increased the opportunity for bike tourism (yes, it does exist).  A path also would have given pedestrians an opportunity that doesn't exist now.  Length of the bridge is inmaterial here...the Wilson Bridge path is not much shorter than a Nice Bridge path would be and is heavily used by pedestrians.

As a bicyclist, I would have accepted 10ft shoulders, though I'm in a minority of bicyclists who would do that.  2ft, as Scott noted, is insane.  Nevermind that there are a whole host of safety reasons unrelated to bicycling that would warrant a 10ft shoulder here.  This is an obscenely short-sighted decision on the part of Maryland.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cl94 on November 23, 2019, 12:34:57 PM
Some of the arguments against a separate bike/ped path on the Nice Bridge were also used against building one on the new Wilson Bridge.  Granted, the Wilson Bridge is in a major metropolitan area and there was nearby bike infrastructure on at least one side.  That said, both Prince George County and even Charles County to a degree have (separately) discussed improving bike accommodations along the 301 corridor.  A path on the Nice Bridge would have greatly improved that and increased the opportunity for bike tourism (yes, it does exist).  A path also would have given pedestrians an opportunity that doesn't exist now.  Length of the bridge is inmaterial here...the Wilson Bridge path is not much shorter than a Nice Bridge path would be and is heavily used by pedestrians.

When it comes to these things, "if you build it, they will come". I could definitely see people biking or jogging across it. Put a parking lot at either end and it works. It would still be little more than half the length of the Tappan Zee/Mario Cuomo Bridge path they're opening next year.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 23, 2019, 01:25:02 PM
As a bicyclist, I would have accepted 10ft shoulders, though I'm in a minority of bicyclists who would do that.  2ft, as Scott noted, is insane.  Nevermind that there are a whole host of safety reasons unrelated to bicycling that would warrant a 10ft shoulder here.  This is an obscenely short-sighted decision on the part of Maryland.
Especially give the fact that the current economic state of the heavy construction industry provided such a low bid, $463 million as opposed the official estimate of $756 million in Nov. 2016.

So they could have repackaged, re-bid, work ordered, whatever the best method as they deem appropriate, and included the $64 million for the separated bicycle/pedestrian path, and the $100 million or whatever to add full shoulders to the bridge, and still have been far below the 2016 estimate.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on November 23, 2019, 01:37:45 PM
The Jordan Bridge linking Chesapeake / Portsmouth in Hampton Roads was replaced about a decade with a 1.2 mile long 2-lane high-rise bridge and includes a multi-use trail separated from the roadway. The city also constructed a new Elizabeth River park on the eastern end, and since then the bridge has had pretty decent usage as far as pedestrians / bicycles are concerned. A simple street view from April 2019 imagery shows at least 7 people crossing the bridge.

The US-17 Veterans Bridge crossing the Elizabeth River that was constructed a few years back as apart of the Dominion Blvd project is also a 1.2 mile long 4-lane high-rise bridge and includes a multi-use trail separated from the roadway on the southbound span. Contrary to the Jordan Bridge though, I haven't seen as much activity on this bridge, but you do see people utilize it occasionally. There's a residential area on the northern end and the Cedar Rd retail corridor on the southern end, so there's definitely potential.

Both of these bridges also include shoulders, 8 foot on the Jordan Bridge and 10 foot on the Veterans Bridge, the latter being a freeway facility.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on November 23, 2019, 01:39:48 PM
Not a good idea to allow bikes to use the bridge with only a 2-foot shoulder, somebody is going to have to get shoveled up.
With no shoulder, you might have to shovel some cars up to if someone breaks down in the wrong place on the travel lane (the only place to break down).
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 23, 2019, 01:47:40 PM
Not a good idea to allow bikes to use the bridge with only a 2-foot shoulder, somebody is going to have to get shoveled up.
With no shoulder, you might have to shovel some cars up to if someone breaks down in the wrong place on the travel lane (the only place to break down).
Wreckers and heavy wreckers would be utilized to remove wrecked cars and trucks from the bridge.

The police and fire department units would need to bring some body bags as well.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: jeffandnicole on November 23, 2019, 04:10:12 PM
The ideal time to revise the design would have been before the award, then to rebid.

Ludicrous.  That's like a table getting dealt cards face up in a poker hand, then telling everyone to bet.

You can't go back to rebid just because the bids are lower than expected, then add stuff to the package and rebid the entire package.  The bridge had now been engineered and designed based on public comment, in which it was decided to eliminate that bike/ped walkway. Significantly changing the design will also mean to hell with the public comments, change many other aspects of the bridge, and the resulting price tag of the bridge.

Everyone has also seen everyone else's cards.  In the next round of bidding, the pricing for every line item can vary greatly, and there's certainly no guarantee bids will be even close to the already lowest-bid plus $46 million or so.  Not to mention - the same companies may not even bother bidding.  It takes companies a wealth of time and money to bid.  The higher bidders probably won't even bother bidding again, so now you have fewer companies bidding, and when there's fewer players at the plate, it's almost guaranteed bids will come in higher than before.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 23, 2019, 05:46:36 PM
The ideal time to revise the design would have been before the award, then to rebid.
Ludicrous.  That's like a table getting dealt cards face up in a poker hand, then telling everyone to bet.
You can't go back to rebid just because the bids are lower than expected, then add stuff to the package and rebid the entire package. 
Actually you can, and the Maryland Transportation Authority (MdTA) has done so in the past.

Their Key Bridge was originally planned as a tunnel.

http://www.roadstothefuture.com/Balt_Outer_Harbor.html

The Outer Harbor Crossing, an 11-mile-long toll facility between MD-10 Arundel Freeway and MD-151 North Point Boulevard, was opened to traffic on March 23, 1977, and this completed the Baltimore Beltway.  The Outer Harbor Crossing was planned as a two-lane freeway on four-lane right-of-way, with a single-tube two-lane 6,200-foot-long harbor tunnel.  The two-lane freeway was placed under construction, the causeways (landfill for roadway across a water body) for the tunnel portals were built, and when the tunnel was advertised for construction in 1970, the bids received on July 30, 1970 were so high that it was determined that a four-lane high-level bridge could be built for about the same cost as the revised estimate for the tunnel project, about $50 million.  So the bridge was built, well-known to motorists as the Francis Scott Key Bridge.

The substructure contract bids for the bridge were received on August 24, 1972, so the new design took 2 years to complete.
 
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Alps on November 23, 2019, 07:09:04 PM
Scott: You are looking at the wrong side of things - if bids were too HIGH, then you can go back and rework. Jeff is right. When bids are too LOW, you don't reverse course. You go ahead and see what you can add on. But you don't restart the design phase.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 23, 2019, 07:23:17 PM
Scott: You are looking at the wrong side of things - if bids were too HIGH, then you can go back and rework. Jeff is right. When bids are too LOW, you don't reverse course. You go ahead and see what you can add on. But you don't restart the design phase.
That is why I mentioned several different methods.

Revising the design and issuing a work order is one method.  That would be a major revision to build a substructure and superstructure that is 16 to 20 feet wider.  Not sure whether it would mean total redesign or not.

But I would like to see them take advantage of the low bidding environment and add full shoulders to the bridge (yeah some people might think that is a pipe dream!).
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: hbelkins on November 23, 2019, 07:31:40 PM
Scott: You are looking at the wrong side of things - if bids were too HIGH, then you can go back and rework. Jeff is right. When bids are too LOW, you don't reverse course. You go ahead and see what you can add on. But you don't restart the design phase.

Wonder how much preliminary design work may have been done on other options?

I get the impression, though, that in design work, it's easier and cheaper to cut back than to add on. In one close-to-home project, the initial design was for 12-foot lanes, 10-foot shoulders and truck lanes on a nine-mile section of road. But TPTB decided they wanted to save money, so they re-engineered it into a route with 11-foot lanes, 4-foot shoulders, and no truck lanes. I'm guessing it was simpler to cut back than it would have been to add on.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 23, 2019, 09:50:59 PM
I get the impression, though, that in design work, it's easier and cheaper to cut back than to add on. In one close-to-home project, the initial design was for 12-foot lanes, 10-foot shoulders and truck lanes on a nine-mile section of road. But TPTB decided they wanted to save money, so they re-engineered it into a route with 11-foot lanes, 4-foot shoulders, and no truck lanes. I'm guessing it was simpler to cut back than it would have been to add on.
There may well be an "agency mindset" in most agencies to be more resistant to expanding a design as opposed to vice versa.

The costs of modifying the design plans should be about equal for either direction, though.  That would depend too on how much needed to be changed.  Depends on how many hours of design work needs to be performed.

An expanded design could impact other project elements such as requiring more right-of-way, obtaining new USCG permits, etc.  A reduced design might not impact those things.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: dlsterner on November 23, 2019, 11:24:37 PM
Was it ever considered to re-purpose the old bridge as bicycle/pedestrian rather than demolishing it upon completion of the new bridge?  Or would the maintenance and upkeep on the old bridge be prohibitive?
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: jeffandnicole on November 24, 2019, 09:56:57 AM
The ideal time to revise the design would have been before the award, then to rebid.
Ludicrous.  That's like a table getting dealt cards face up in a poker hand, then telling everyone to bet.
You can't go back to rebid just because the bids are lower than expected, then add stuff to the package and rebid the entire package. 
Actually you can, and the Maryland Transportation Authority (MdTA) has done so in the past.

Their Key Bridge was originally planned as a tunnel.

http://www.roadstothefuture.com/Balt_Outer_Harbor.html

The Outer Harbor Crossing, an 11-mile-long toll facility between MD-10 Arundel Freeway and MD-151 North Point Boulevard, was opened to traffic on March 23, 1977, and this completed the Baltimore Beltway.  The Outer Harbor Crossing was planned as a two-lane freeway on four-lane right-of-way, with a single-tube two-lane 6,200-foot-long harbor tunnel.  The two-lane freeway was placed under construction, the causeways (landfill for roadway across a water body) for the tunnel portals were built, and when the tunnel was advertised for construction in 1970, the bids received on July 30, 1970 were so high that it was determined that a four-lane high-level bridge could be built for about the same cost as the revised estimate for the tunnel project, about $50 million.  So the bridge was built, well-known to motorists as the Francis Scott Key Bridge.

The substructure contract bids for the bridge were received on August 24, 1972, so the new design took 2 years to complete.
 

New Jersey (and I'm sure many other states and agencies) have done this as well.  When bids come in too high, they throw out all bids.  As mentioned, nothing unusual about that.  They go back to see what can be eliminated or reworked, then they put the project out to bid again.  However, this certainly impacts the original timeline of the project.  When it comes to waterway crossings especially, there's some things certain things that can be worked on during certain periods of time due to marine or environmental factors.

It would also be very questionable how a project comes in nearly 40% below estimates.  The economy is doing quite well, and most projects are coming in around their estimates.  Did the agency never updated their estimate, either in house or publically?  Did they greatly miscalculate materials?  What did the other bidders bid?  The NJ Turnpike website is good for posting minutes of their meetings.  This includes bid results and contract awards.  Whenever the winning bid comes in much higher or lower than expected, they will review the bids.  Sometimes, if all the bids are similarly received, they determine what line items were the cause for it and usually approve the winning bid if deemed reasonable.  If the low bid contractor gave a bid sufficiently below estimates, they'll consider other work they've done for the Turnpike and will even have a meeting with them to determine if they properly bid the project.  A low-ball bid sometimes doesn't work out if the company doesn't have the expertise, and winds up costing everyone more in the long-run.

You're gonna be real hard pressed to find a project where the bids all came in so low that they threw them out and redesigned the entire project for more work. Small modifications during a project are fine.  A wholesale large-scale change is actually probably gonna cause the losing firms to consider legal action.

Scott: You are looking at the wrong side of things - if bids were too HIGH, then you can go back and rework. Jeff is right. When bids are too LOW, you don't reverse course. You go ahead and see what you can add on. But you don't restart the design phase.

Wonder how much preliminary design work may have been done on other options?

I get the impression, though, that in design work, it's easier and cheaper to cut back than to add on. In one close-to-home project, the initial design was for 12-foot lanes, 10-foot shoulders and truck lanes on a nine-mile section of road. But TPTB decided they wanted to save money, so they re-engineered it into a route with 11-foot lanes, 4-foot shoulders, and no truck lanes. I'm guessing it was simpler to cut back than it would have been to add on.

Certainly all depends.  Sometimes during those preliminary designs, they come upon something that is so costly to change or remove that it's worth it to rework the design and request exceptions.  Usually we're not talking about utilities which can usually be reworked, but something more major like a small piece of federal property that'll take decades to convince DC to sell (yeah, stupid stuff like that happens).

In most design phases, they go thru numerous design options for the best fit.  If a project needs to be reworked, they can often pull up a previous design that was discarded and utilize that.

I did see one project near me that went the opposite way though.  An intersection with US 322 and CR 551 is just a simple single-lane each way, no turn lanes intersection, which caused horrendous backups.  Adding to the issue is a school right there and a hump on 322 that caused slight-line issues.  At a public meeting, the preliminary design option proposed just adding a left turn lane in each direction.  I remember talking with a consultant at the meeting stating that they should expand this wider, and he accused me of wanting to make it a full blown highway.  What was a little ironic about this conversation is that the engineer company's website includes work on other projects in other states, where they literally widened sleepy 2 lane roads to become 6 lane wide urban arterials!  In the end, NJDOT increased the scope of the project, to allow a more significant widening to 2 lanes per direction and a left turn lane on US 322, and wider lanes and shoulders on CR 551.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 24, 2019, 02:00:01 PM
It would also be very questionable how a project comes in nearly 40% below estimates.  The economy is doing quite well, and most projects are coming in around their estimates.  Did the agency never updated their estimate, either in house or publically?  Did they greatly miscalculate materials?  What did the other bidders bid?
It can happen for a variety of reasons, it all depends on how hungry the contractors are for work, these ones could be in between major projects and in need for more work, and there are very few construction firms or consortiums that can build a project of that magnitude (whether the Outer Harbor Crossing Tunnel or the new US-301 Nice Bridge), so that increases the difficulty of estimating.

The fact that three firms, the Skanska-Corman-McLean (SCM) Joint Venture, coordinated to build the bridge, could create synergy to bid a much lower price and still be able to generate a profit for the firms.

I have been watching contracting for 50 years, it is apparent that sometimes bids can come in much higher or much lower than the engineers' estimate.

The Fort McHenry Tunnel had a similar situation
http://www.roadstothefuture.com/Fort_McHenry_Tunnel.html#Cut-and-Cover

The 2,300-foot-long West Approach Contract was awarded in November 1981 to Lane Construction Corp. of Meriden, Conn., and the award amount was $64 million.  The Interstate Division for Baltimore City (IDBC), a joint city-state agency established to administer the construction of Interstate highways in the City of Baltimore, had estimated the cost at $126 million, so the low bid was 51% of the estimated cost.  National recession and shortfall in state and federal highway funding in the early 1980s caused heavy construction contractors to be hungry for work, and in many cases around the country they bid individual projects far below the agency estimate. 

The West Approach contract included the relocation of existing railroads, the addition of 2,800 feet of new track, the construction of cut-and-cover cast-in-place reinforced concrete tunnel structure, the construction of open depressed approaches, and the erection of the west ventilation building.

The 1,600-foot-long East Approach Contract was awarded in June 1982 to S.J. Groves & Sons Co. of Minneapolis, Minn., and the award amount was $37 million.  IDBC had estimated the cost at $50 million, so the low bid was 26% below the agency estimated cost. 

The East Approach contract included the construction of cut-and-cover cast-in-place reinforced concrete tunnel structure, the construction of open depressed approaches, and the erection of the east ventilation building.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on November 24, 2019, 05:36:50 PM
^

Didn't a similar situation happen with the US-17 relocation in Southern Chesapeake, coming out far lower than engineer estimate?
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: hbelkins on November 24, 2019, 06:33:39 PM
I'm wondering if adjustments in labor costs can result in bids coming in below estimates.

A couple of years ago, Kentucky repealed its state prevailing wage law for school construction contracts. (I'm pretty sure it didn't apply to road construction contracts, especially since many of those projects are federally funded and thus would be subject to federal laws such as Davis-Bacon). Shortly thereafter, a contract was let for construction of a new school in a county about an hour away. I'm told the bids came in $6 million below estimates because the cost of labor was drastically reduced.

I really wish states would use their ability to estimate project costs to get bids down. Most of the contractors who bid on road projects don't do anything else. If the state would start setting lower estimates and rejecting bids, the companies would have to reduce their bids accordingly to get work.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 24, 2019, 08:03:47 PM
Didn't a similar situation happen with the US-17 relocation in Southern Chesapeake, coming out far lower than engineer estimate?
Yes, and what I wrote on my website in 2007 is another example of what I am talking about. 

What the construction industry is willing to bid on a contract can vary considerably depending on the current state of that industry.

If the bids come in too high, the agency may decide to re-advertise the contract.  If the bids are too low, then they can enjoy the windfall.

http://www.roadstothefuture.com/US17-VA-Chesapeake.html

The prime construction contractor on the project was Barnhill Contracting Company, and the construction contract cost $41.96 million.

The contract bid amount was well below the engineering estimate for the project, and that provided a benefit to VDOT and the taxpayers.  As of the December 2002 bid opening, the VDOT Six-Year Program entry for that project was $76.566 million programmed for Construction.  There were 8 bids distributed between $41,039,684.75 (Barnhill) and $46,929,719.80.  For 11.6 miles of mostly new-location four-lane highway at a cost of $41.96 million, that works out to an average per mile cost of $3.62 million.  The project has two bridges, twin bridges over wetlands, each 984 feet long.  Sometimes the state of the national economy is such that contractors are hungry for work and will bid much lower on a project than ordinarily.  That was a very good deal for that amount of highway construction, and the quality of work is very good.  The 2006 Six-Year Program entry for this project shows expenditures of $3.46 million for Preliminary Engineering, and $12.338 million for Right-of-Way acquisition.  Total costs for the project amount to $57.758 million.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Alps on November 24, 2019, 09:50:25 PM
I really wish states would use their ability to estimate project costs to get bids down. Most of the contractors who bid on road projects don't do anything else. If the state would start setting lower estimates and rejecting bids, the companies would have to reduce their bids accordingly to get work.
"I really wish construction workers weren't paid fairly." "I really wish construction companies weren't allowed to make profits."
They're bidding what they need to bid to do the job, knowing that contingencies arise during construction. Companies will only take a loss or work for no profit if they desperately need the work to avoid letting their workers go.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Rothman on November 24, 2019, 09:55:52 PM
On top of that, few states would jeopardize their capital program schedule to pick fights with the contracting community, which may have considerable sway over the DOTs' bosses -- the Governors.  Bringing a program to a crashing halt in a gambit to lower bids would be politically infeasible.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on November 25, 2019, 05:47:28 PM
I'm wondering if adjustments in labor costs can result in bids coming in below estimates.

Probably not if there is federal money involved (and the Davis-Bacon Act applies).  Davis-Bacon requires
contractors on construction projects with federal dollars to pay "prevailing" (as in union-scale) wages to
employees. 

In some places, an advertisement for bids will say something like "Wage rates to be paid on this project
have been pre-determined by the U.S. Department of Labor," which almost certainly means that the
Davis-Bacon Act applies.

A couple of years ago, Kentucky repealed its state prevailing wage law for school construction contracts. (I'm pretty sure it didn't apply to road construction contracts, especially since many of those projects are federally funded and thus would be subject to federal laws such as Davis-Bacon). Shortly thereafter, a contract was let for construction of a new school in a county about an hour away. I'm told the bids came in $6 million below estimates because the cost of labor was drastically reduced.

I really wish states would use their ability to estimate project costs to get bids down. Most of the contractors who bid on road projects don't do anything else. If the state would start setting lower estimates and rejecting bids, the companies would have to reduce their bids accordingly to get work.

In order for that to happen, Kentucky would need to stop using federal dollars on highway projects - or
get Congress to repeal Davis-Bacon.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Duke87 on November 25, 2019, 11:53:43 PM
I really wish states would use their ability to estimate project costs to get bids down. Most of the contractors who bid on road projects don't do anything else. If the state would start setting lower estimates and rejecting bids, the companies would have to reduce their bids accordingly to get work.
"I really wish construction workers weren't paid fairly." "I really wish construction companies weren't allowed to make profits."
They're bidding what they need to bid to do the job, knowing that contingencies arise during construction. Companies will only take a loss or work for no profit if they desperately need the work to avoid letting their workers go.

FWIW there is still the issue that public infrastructure construction costs more in the US than it does anywhere else in the world. Somewhere, somehow, it must be possible to drag those costs down and still get work done.

But I don't think beating up contractors on price is going to be an effective way to do it.

Tort reform might be, though. Liability is expensive.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Alps on November 27, 2019, 12:33:42 AM
I really wish states would use their ability to estimate project costs to get bids down. Most of the contractors who bid on road projects don't do anything else. If the state would start setting lower estimates and rejecting bids, the companies would have to reduce their bids accordingly to get work.
"I really wish construction workers weren't paid fairly." "I really wish construction companies weren't allowed to make profits."
They're bidding what they need to bid to do the job, knowing that contingencies arise during construction. Companies will only take a loss or work for no profit if they desperately need the work to avoid letting their workers go.

FWIW there is still the issue that public infrastructure construction costs more in the US than it does anywhere else in the world. Somewhere, somehow, it must be possible to drag those costs down and still get work done.

But I don't think beating up contractors on price is going to be an effective way to do it.

Tort reform might be, though. Liability is expensive.
Willing to bet you if we had higher taxes, everyone had a higher base wage, free health care, subsidized or free secondary education, etc. etc., these costs would come down.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Duke87 on November 27, 2019, 12:44:08 AM
Willing to bet you if we had higher taxes, everyone had a higher base wage, free health care, subsidized or free secondary education, etc. etc., these costs would come down.

Indeed, this is one thing that has been posited is that much of the higher costs of construction in the US are effectively a matter of accounting - that the quoted costs of projects in the US are inflated by virtue of including expenses like healthcare for the workers which in another country would be an entirely separate budget item in an entirely different department.

That only goes so far though. And it has been observed that construction costs are inflated in all countries whose legal systems are based on the English common law system - i.e. countries where it is easy to file a lawsuit and they are the standard means of resolving contractual disputes. Hence why I bring up tort reform.

Construction costs in the US are about 4x what they are in Australia, for example (also an English common law country), but are as much as 10x what they are in continental Europe (different legal system entirely).
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on November 27, 2019, 11:18:05 AM
Some blowback regarding the decision to not build a bike and pedestrian trail across the new Nice/Middleton Bridge.

Note that I disagree with the comments in this article about the incomplete ICC (MD-200) trail - the fault for that not being completed rests with the county government agencies in Montgomery County and Prince George's County Planning Boards as well as both County Councils, who should have insisted that the trail be completed as described in their master plan documents.  MdTA would have built a complete trail if the counties had insisted upon it, as they should have.

Opinion: Implications of the Broken Promise on the Nice Bridge (https://www.marylandmatters.org/2019/11/27/opinion-implications-of-the-broken-promise-on-the-nice-bridge/)
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 27, 2019, 03:25:00 PM
Some blowback regarding the decision to not build a bike and pedestrian trail across the new Nice/Middleton Bridge.

I am much more concerned about the lack of full shoulders than I am about the bike and pedestrian trail.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on November 27, 2019, 03:39:55 PM
Some blowback regarding the decision to not build a bike and pedestrian trail across the new Nice/Middleton Bridge.

I am much more concerned about the lack of full shoulders than I am about the bike and pedestrian trail.
Problem is - RE/T groups don't care about the safety of motorists, only bicyclists and pedestrians.

Ideally, they should build both a shoulder and a bicycle / pedestrian trail, even with the extra costs it's better in the long-run, but if only one, a shoulder should be far greater of a need than a trail.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 27, 2019, 03:51:20 PM
I am much more concerned about the lack of full shoulders than I am about the bike and pedestrian trail.
Problem is - RE/T groups don't care about the safety of motorists, only bicyclists and pedestrians.
Ideally, they should build both a shoulder and a bicycle / pedestrian trail, even with the extra costs it's better in the long-run, but if only one, a shoulder should be far greater of a need than a trail.
And still be far below the $762 million estimate of Nov. 2016.

Granted that a 10-foot shoulder could be used by bicycles and pedestrians, but it would be a very noisy environment, based on my experiences with the new VA-147 Huguenot Bridge, which has a 45 mph speed limit (appropriate given the nature of Huguenot Road), and very low truck traffic.  The new Nice Bridge will see 55 to 60 mph speeds, and currently carries about 26,000 AADT and 1,500 large truck AADT, which will undoubtedly increase.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on November 27, 2019, 03:58:01 PM
based on my experiences with the new VA-147 Huguenot Bridge, which has a 45 mph speed limit (appropriate given the nature of Huguenot Road), and very low truck traffic.
Looking at Street View, doesn't that bridge also have sidewalks on both sides, plus that 8-10 foot shoulder?

And agree completely. I've crossed a few different bridges utilizing the paved shoulder due to lack of trail / sidewalk, and even with speeds as low as 35 mph, it's still better off having at minimum a sidewalk.

The new Nice Bridge would be effectively a freeway with traffic doing 60-70 mph (especially on the descend) and I wouldn't want to be riding a bicycle or walking on a 10 foot shoulder, and certainly not a 2 foot shoulder as they are going forth with. It's not some minor rural road bridge. I don't even like being parked in my car on the shoulder of a flat freeway, walking / biking on a shoulder being unprotected from the travel lanes, you're just asking for something to happen.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 27, 2019, 04:06:27 PM
based on my experiences with the new VA-147 Huguenot Bridge, which has a 45 mph speed limit (appropriate given the nature of Huguenot Road), and very low truck traffic.
Looking at Street View, doesn't that bridge also have sidewalks on both sides, plus that 8-10 foot shoulder?
10 foot shoulder and 5 foot sidewalk on each side.

I walked across it once and biked across it once, way too noisy.  Very few people do it, even though it is well positioned for neighborhoods and the University of Richmond, and has beautiful views of the James River; the -average- number I see is less than one per trip, and I cross it several times a week and have for years.

South of the river there is Riverside Drive paralleling the river, with almost unlimited enjoyment for walkers and cyclists; no need to cross the river if you live on that side.
 
I recently got a boat, so that is another way that I will be enjoying the river.
 
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on November 27, 2019, 04:10:49 PM
https://www.google.com/maps/@36.7411678,-76.3450989,3a,64.7y,133.75h,81.82t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1s5QjiUVYkYjld1h6QE9qgxw!2e0!7i16384!8i8192!5m1!1e1

This bridge in the Deep Creek area of Chesapeake was built in the 1934 even features a sidewalk that's physically separated from the roadway.

It's not bad crossing despite the heavy traffic load, though in fairness the only time I've crossed it was during peak hours, and Deep Creek is a parking lot during peak hours and the fastest traffic moved was 25 - 30 mph. The sidewalk is in terrible shape, but doable.

The bridge is getting replaced with a 5-lane bridge beginning early next year. Will be a major improvement to the area, mainly traffic wise doubling the capacity, and will feature a multi-use path, and a traffic signal at George Washington Hwy South / Moses Grandy Trl along with improved sidewalk access and crosswalks.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 27, 2019, 04:13:45 PM
This bridge in the Deep Creek area of Chesapeake was built in the 1934 even features a sidewalk that's physically separated from the roadway.
The bridge is getting replaced with a 5-lane bridge beginning early next year. Will be a major improvement to the area, mainly traffic wise doubling the capacity, and will feature a multi-use path, and a traffic signal at George Washington Hwy South / Moses Grandy Trl along with improved sidewalk access and crosswalks.
How much vertical navigational clearance on the new bridge?

Drawbridge openings and very low clearance over the canal are a major part of the problem.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on November 27, 2019, 04:29:34 PM
How much vertical navigational clearance on the new bridge?

Drawbridge openings and very low clearance over the canal are a major part of the problem.
The vertical clearance will still be the current ~5 ft. There's no room to build a higher bridge. Similar situation with the Great Bridge bridge replacement a decade ago in Great Bridge, still low clearance.

The drawbridge openings aren't the problem here honestly. It's the road network, and the massive traffic chokepoint the crossing is.

The bridge has a restricted opening schedule (http://www.cityofchesapeake.net/government/city-departments/departments/Public-Works-Department/Divisions/bridges/deep-creek-bridge.htm), and only opens at 8:30 am, 11 am, 1:30 pm, and 3:30 pm. It doesn't present any traffic issues at peak hours as it does not lift then.

Here's the design for the new bridge and roadway improvements (large file) - https://media.defense.gov/2018/Aug/14/2001954208/-1/-1/1/080814-A-EN999-102.JPG

Project websites -
https://www.nao.usace.army.mil/About/Projects/AIWW-Deep-Creek-Bridge/
http://www.cityofchesapeake.net/government/city-departments/departments/Public-Works-Department/Deep-Creek-AIW-Bridge.htm

The biggest chokepoints - the merge from 2 to 1 lane heading WB on Moses Grandy Trl, the 1-2 mile backup of traffic (that impedes the mainline) SB waiting to turn left onto the bridge, the ~1/2 mile backup NB on George Washington Hwy on the east side waiting to turn onto the bridge at an intersection controlled by a stop sign, and the lack of dedicated right turn lane heading WB over the bridge, where vehicles going straight frequently block turning traffic (since it only takes 1-2 vehicles to block it) resulting in heavier congestion on the east side - would all be alleviated with this project. Continuous 3 lanes over the bridge WB, double left and 2 lanes over the bridge EB, traffic signal at George Washington Hwy on the east side with a double left NB, and a dedicated right turn lane heading WB, allowing a free-flowing movement.

Interestingly, after looking at the design plans, I noticed they are eliminating the separation between the sidewalk and roadway, and it will be a similar setup to the VA-147 bridge you mentioned above, except no shoulder.



An ultimate solution would be to build the western part of the Pleasant Grove Pkwy - between US-17 and Military Hwy / US-17. Since a majority of the traffic in Deep Creek is thru traffic, and it has spiked 5,000 AADT after Dominion Blvd tolling began, this parkway would provide a bypass of Deep Creek and a straight shot to I-64 West (eastbound) towards Suffolk. Whether it's built as a freeway design as originally proposed, or the more recent arterial 45 mph design, it would significantly relieve congestion and could provide a high-rise bridge over the canal (about 65 ft would be needed if the US-17 fixed-span 4-lane bridge in North Carolina is any indication).

But this itself would cost an enormous amount of money, and if Chesapeake's previous projects are any indication, tolls would likely be involved, especially if it's a freeway design. Still would be a helpful connection, notably to the west for traffic coming from North Carolina though, which either has to traverse Deep Creek, or take the circuitous route to I-64 over the congested High Rise Bridge.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 27, 2019, 04:39:23 PM
How much vertical navigational clearance on the new bridge?
Drawbridge openings and very low clearance over the canal are a major part of the problem.
The vertical clearance will still be the current ~5 ft. There's no room to build a higher bridge. Similar situation with the Great Bridge bridge replacement a decade ago in Great Bridge, still low clearance.
The drawbridge openings aren't the problem here honestly. It's the road network, and the massive traffic chokepoint the crossing is.
That is surprising, as that is the Dismal Swamp Canal, connects to Albemarle Sound, I'll bet that plenty of boaters don't like that schedule.

Overridden by road traffic needs.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on November 27, 2019, 04:44:49 PM
How much vertical navigational clearance on the new bridge?
Drawbridge openings and very low clearance over the canal are a major part of the problem.
The vertical clearance will still be the current ~5 ft. There's no room to build a higher bridge. Similar situation with the Great Bridge bridge replacement a decade ago in Great Bridge, still low clearance.
The drawbridge openings aren't the problem here honestly. It's the road network, and the massive traffic chokepoint the crossing is.
That is surprising, as that is the Dismal Swamp Canal, connects to Albemarle Sound, I'll bet that plenty of boaters don't like that schedule.

Overridden by road traffic needs.
Pretty sure it's been that way for decades though. It's set by the Coast Guard and the ACOE, not the City, though surely the city had input in that decision.

Annual boaters likely are aware of these types of things and consider it as much as possible.

The Great Bridge bridge is similar, though less restrictive since it does open on the hour every hour.

The city's Centerville Tpke bridge lifts on demand, except is restricted during peak hours. Since August, it's been non-existent as the bridge has been moved off to the side for the major rehabilitation project underway, with the roadway closed to traffic. That will be placed back and re-opened by February though. The city is currently undergoing a feasibility study to ultimately replace it with a 4-6 lane high rise bridge. That's expected to be completed next year.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on November 27, 2019, 07:41:13 PM
That is surprising, as that is the Dismal Swamp Canal, connects to Albemarle Sound, I'll bet that plenty of boaters don't like that schedule.
Overridden by road traffic needs.
Pretty sure it's been that way for decades though. It's set by the Coast Guard and the ACOE, not the City, though surely the city had input in that decision.
Annual boaters likely are aware of these types of things and consider it as much as possible.
Given traffic patterns, the bridge and US-17 was probably pretty congested in peak hours even 30 years ago.  So they probably restricted openings even back then, but that doesn't mean that boaters weren't being inconvenienced in a major way as seen from their perspective.

Where I grew up in Florida, we had a cruising sailboat, and the drawbridges over the Intracoastal Waterway (ICW) at Melbourne and Eau Gallie needed to be raised to allow our passage.  The signal was 3 blasts from a Freon horn.  Sometimes we had wait because of traffic congestion.  But I got a really good perspective of how mariners view drawbridges.  These bridges have since been replaced with fixed high level bridges.

Sounds like the one at Deep Creek doesn't have enough vertical clearance for even a small powerboat that has no mast.

The ones in Florida were swingspan and had about 20 feet of vertical navigational clearance when the swingspan was closed.

More info here -- http://www.roadstothefuture.com/Florida_Trip.html
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on November 27, 2019, 07:54:58 PM
^
Since the original discussion related to the Nice bridge replacement not featuring a shoulder, it's interesting how that I-295 bridge in Jacksonville (https://www.google.com/maps/@30.3842954,-81.5567303,3a,75y,341.45h,80.7t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sT-2-51TdV8FpIMucWpjH0Q!2e0!7i16384!8i8192) was built in 1989 without full left or right shoulders, and 6-lanes...
(http://www.roadstothefuture.com/Dames_Point_Bridge_1.jpg)

...but another bridge such as the arterial US-17 bridge in Savannah (https://www.google.com/maps/@32.0867692,-81.1004954,3a,49.2y,45.59h,87.53t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1svvyN6XjPdSGiJaV-1aDgjg!2e0!7i13312!8i6656) built in 1991 did feature a full right shoulder, such the design the Nice bridge should have. And as you mention in your article, US-17 still hasn't been widened to 4-lanes north of there and goes 6-miles into South Carolina before widening out to 4-lane divided highway. SCDOT currently has plans to finally expand the last remaining 2-lane section and twinning the Back River bridge with a new parallel one slated for construction in a couple of years.

(http://www.roadstothefuture.com/US17_Savannah_River_Br.jpg)

Interesting article overall.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: kevinb1994 on November 28, 2019, 03:44:26 AM
^
Since the original discussion related to the Nice bridge replacement not featuring a shoulder, it's interesting how that I-295 bridge in Jacksonville (https://www.google.com/maps/@30.3842954,-81.5567303,3a,75y,341.45h,80.7t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sT-2-51TdV8FpIMucWpjH0Q!2e0!7i16384!8i8192) was built in 1989 without full left or right shoulders, and 6-lanes...
(http://www.roadstothefuture.com/Dames_Point_Bridge_1.jpg)

...but another bridge such as the arterial US-17 bridge in Savannah (https://www.google.com/maps/@32.0867692,-81.1004954,3a,49.2y,45.59h,87.53t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1svvyN6XjPdSGiJaV-1aDgjg!2e0!7i13312!8i6656) built in 1991 did feature a full right shoulder, such the design the Nice bridge should have. And as you mention in your article, US-17 still hasn't been widened to 4-lanes north of there and goes 6-miles into South Carolina before widening out to 4-lane divided highway. SCDOT currently has plans to finally expand the last remaining 2-lane section and twinning the Back River bridge with a new parallel one slated for construction in a couple of years.

(http://www.roadstothefuture.com/US17_Savannah_River_Br.jpg)

Interesting article overall.
I've been over both of those bridges you mentioned, and wondered how the Dames Point Bridge was built with such a narrow width! Whenever there is an incident or traffic buildup going towards it on the I-295 East Beltway, we take the Buckman Bridge via the I-295 West Beltway instead. Maybe they'll address the problem once HOT lanes are extended in the near future.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 06, 2019, 09:45:26 PM
Skanska-Led Team Aims for Early 2020 Start on $463M Maryland Bridge
Excerpts:

A joint venture of Skanska, Corman Kokosing Construction Co. and McLean Contracting Co. is moving toward an early 2020 construction start for a $463-million replacement for a 79-year-old bridge across the Potomac River, south of Washington, D.C.

The Maryland Transportation Authority (MdTA) on Nov. 21 announced its board’s approval of the design-build contract award for the Nice-Middleton Bridge to the Skanska-Corman-McLean team.  AECOM is the team's main design firm.

The authority said the joint venture submitted the low bid and also had the highest technical score among those that made proposals.

Like the current bridge, the replacement would extend for 1.9 miles and carry U.S. Route 301 from Charles County in southern Maryland to King George County in Virginia.

The new bridge will have four lanes, double the number on the existing bridge.  The lanes will be 12 ft wide and be accompanied by 2-ft-wide shoulders.
[vomit makes a sickening sound when it hits the floor]

It also will have prestressed concrete girders for much of its length and steel plate girders in the spans over the navigation channel in the Potomac.  The present Nice-Middleton bridge is a steel truss structure.

Construction is to begin in early 2020 and the bridge is expected to open in 2023, the MdTA said.


See the URL for the rest of the article.
https://www.enr.com/articles/48262-skanska-led-team-aims-for-early-2020-start-on-463m-maryland-bridge
 
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on December 06, 2019, 10:27:21 PM
A sneak peak at Maryland's idea of a modern, standard 21st century bridge on a major route carrying interstate volumes.

https://www.google.com/maps/@39.2109858,-76.5363762,3a,37.6y,61.6h,84.09t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sIEVDIIMu_B0FTkqhHCCpZw!2e0!7i13312!8i6656!5m1!1e1
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 06, 2019, 10:34:25 PM
A sneak peak at Maryland's idea of a modern, standard 21st century bridge on a major route carrying interstate volumes.
The Francis Scott Key Bridge was opened in 1977, or 42 years ago.

That has quite a bit of age upon it.

Look at this one from 2008 --
https://www.google.com/maps/@38.7930359,-77.0424633,3a,30y,96.65h,86.2t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sfz3KUV5qgZeCbklGi4_gRg!2e0!7i13312!8i6656

Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on December 06, 2019, 10:38:35 PM
A sneak peak at Maryland's idea of a modern, standard 21st century bridge on a major route carrying interstate volumes.
The Francis Scott Key Bridge was opened in 1977, or 42 years ago.

That has quite a bit of age upon it.

Look at this one from 2008 --
https://www.google.com/maps/@38.7930359,-77.0424633,3a,30y,96.65h,86.2t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sfz3KUV5qgZeCbklGi4_gRg!2e0!7i13312!8i6656
My point is that Maryland is utilizing a bridge design from over 40 years ago on a modern 21st century bridge on a major route carrying interstate volumes over a major river.

That Street View imagery of the Francis Scott Key Bridge I provided is exactly what the Nice Bridge replacement will look like from a driver view, except it will obviously have a brand new deck, railing, etc. Cross section wise, no different.

Here could be a view very similar to approaching the Virginia landing in 2023 on Maryland's modern, "standard" 21st century bridge. https://www.google.com/maps/@39.2207197,-76.5234082,3a,43.1y,48.22h,81.82t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sBE1_2yHSHOo3bxIfavnF8Q!2e0!7i13312!8i6656!5m1!1e1

IMO, even 4 foot shoulders would have been more of an improvement over 2 foot. Even minimal interstate standards allow this. Granted, it's not an interstate highway route, but it should at least have a cross section of an interstate highway.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: seicer on December 06, 2019, 10:44:31 PM
And no provisions for pedestrians or cyclists on a dedicated path. I get cost-cutting, but eliminating the provisions that helped define the project in the first place, and making the shoulders extremely narrow with no possibility of widening is just asinine.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 06, 2019, 10:58:53 PM
Quote from: sprjus4 link=topic=8293.msg2461464#msg2461464
My point is that Maryland is utilizing a bridge design from over 40 years ago on a modern 21st century bridge on a major route carrying interstate volumes over a major river.
That Street View imagery of the Francis Scott Key Bridge I provided is exactly what the Nice Bridge replacement will look like from a driver view, except it will obviously have a brand new deck, railing, etc. Cross section wise, no different.
Nothing new to me, I have complained about it multiple times.

I suppose that the rationale may have been that it is not an Interstate highway or freeway, but a rural arterial highway.  Even so, it should have full shoulders even as an arterial.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 06, 2019, 11:03:02 PM
And no provisions for pedestrians or cyclists on a dedicated path. I get cost-cutting, but eliminating the provisions that helped define the project in the first place, and making the shoulders extremely narrow with no possibility of widening is just asinine.
No practical engineering way to add lanes to a bridge like that with or without shoulders, they would build a parallel span.  Unless the shoulders were converted to a lane, and then you have a bridge without shoulders.

Granted that design would accommodate three 12-foot lanes and full shoulders on each side.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on December 06, 2019, 11:08:28 PM
Granted that design would accommodate three 12-foot lanes and full shoulders on each side.
With about 58 foot of roadway, that could indeed accommodate three 12 foot lanes and 11 foot left and right shoulders.

For a parallel span, a proper design would be another bridge with the same cross sections, along with a properly completed multi-use path.

I could only see a second parallel span being constructed though if the bridge component of US-301 was incorporated into an Eastern Bypass highway, and at this rate, the chances of that getting built are slim to none.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 06, 2019, 11:13:27 PM
I could only see a second parallel span being constructed though if the bridge component of US-301 was incorporated into an Eastern Bypass highway, and at this rate, the chances of that getting built are slim to none.
That's a shame.

Maryland did a really good job of building a system of highways, bridges and tunnels in the Baltimore area, granted partly thru heavy use of permanent tolling.

In the Washington area, they have really fallen short.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: DJStephens on December 08, 2019, 05:05:50 PM
And no provisions for pedestrians or cyclists on a dedicated path. I get cost-cutting, but eliminating the provisions that helped define the project in the first place, and making the shoulders extremely narrow with no possibility of widening is just asinine.

Guessing this is the decision making coming from Pete rahn, the Maryland DOT chief.  His legacy in New Mexico was simply horrible.   Cost cutting, design regression, and poor construction quality on most jobs.   
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 08, 2019, 05:27:20 PM
And no provisions for pedestrians or cyclists on a dedicated path. I get cost-cutting, but eliminating the provisions that helped define the project in the first place, and making the shoulders extremely narrow with no possibility of widening is just asinine.
Guessing this is the decision making coming from Pete rahn, the Maryland DOT chief.  His legacy in New Mexico was simply horrible.   Cost cutting, design regression, and poor construction quality on most jobs.   

The sad thing is, that given the low bid of $463 million, they should easily have been able to add the full shoulders and bike/ped path, and still be well within the the $762 million estimate of Nov. 2016.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on December 08, 2019, 05:27:55 PM
And no provisions for pedestrians or cyclists on a dedicated path. I get cost-cutting, but eliminating the provisions that helped define the project in the first place, and making the shoulders extremely narrow with no possibility of widening is just asinine.
Guessing this is the decision making coming from Pete rahn, the Maryland DOT chief.  His legacy in New Mexico was simply horrible.   Cost cutting, design regression, and poor construction quality on most jobs.   

The sad thing is, that given the low bid of $463 million, they should easily have been able to add the full shoulders and bike/ped path, and still be well within the the $762 million estimate of Nov. 2016.
Maybe Maryland thinks those minor components would add over $300 million?
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 08, 2019, 05:36:42 PM
The sad thing is, that given the low bid of $463 million, they should easily have been able to add the full shoulders and bike/ped path, and still be well within the the $762 million estimate of Nov. 2016.
Maybe Maryland thinks those minor components would add over $300 million?
I would certainly hope not, although they are not 'minor'. 

Maybe $100 to $120 million?

Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: jeffandnicole on December 08, 2019, 07:47:32 PM
And no provisions for pedestrians or cyclists on a dedicated path. I get cost-cutting, but eliminating the provisions that helped define the project in the first place, and making the shoulders extremely narrow with no possibility of widening is just asinine.
Guessing this is the decision making coming from Pete rahn, the Maryland DOT chief.  His legacy in New Mexico was simply horrible.   Cost cutting, design regression, and poor construction quality on most jobs.   

The sad thing is, that given the low bid of $463 million, they should easily have been able to add the full shoulders and bike/ped path, and still be well within the the $762 million estimate of Nov. 2016.

Back to that again, eh?
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 08, 2019, 09:35:23 PM
The sad thing is, that given the low bid of $463 million, they should easily have been able to add the full shoulders and bike/ped path, and still be well within the the $762 million estimate of Nov. 2016.
Back to that again, eh?
Based on my financial background, and highway engineering background, it really does kind of jump right out.

Plus the MDTA news release said there was a bid option to add a separated bicycle/pedestrian path to the new structure, and that it would cost $64 million, so it was both designed and costed, so we know exactly what would be involved in that element.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on December 09, 2019, 03:38:00 PM
Opinion: Maryland’s 100-year transportation decision (https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/local-opinions/marylands-100-year-transportation-decision/2019/12/06/5cea48ac-0636-11ea-b17d-8b867891d39d_story.html?fbclid=IwAR2urGl3J-2Mra9TJYoF4GyD8ig_8E5rmj3N94394scufjFLZRZhTwnFPd0)

Quote
Maryland is planning on a multigenerational bridge project to last far into the next century. This is the proposed replacement for the Nice-Middleton two-lane bridge over the Potomac River connecting Charles County with King George County, Va. Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) expressed his early support for the construction of a new four-lane bridge that includes a barrier-separated path for hikers and cyclists. The obsolete Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge, constructed in 1938, was designed at a time when cyclists and hikers were in no planner’s mind. The proposed Nice-Middleton Bridge will be with us for another 100 years, so it is imperative that it be done right.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on December 09, 2019, 04:51:23 PM
Opinion: Maryland’s 100-year transportation decision (https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/local-opinions/marylands-100-year-transportation-decision/2019/12/06/5cea48ac-0636-11ea-b17d-8b867891d39d_story.html?fbclid=IwAR2urGl3J-2Mra9TJYoF4GyD8ig_8E5rmj3N94394scufjFLZRZhTwnFPd0)

Quote
Maryland is planning on a multigenerational bridge project to last far into the next century. This is the proposed replacement for the Nice-Middleton two-lane bridge over the Potomac River connecting Charles County with King George County, Va. Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) expressed his early support for the construction of a new four-lane bridge that includes a barrier-separated path for hikers and cyclists. The obsolete Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge, constructed in 1938, was designed at a time when cyclists and hikers were in no planner’s mind. The proposed Nice-Middleton Bridge will be with us for another 100 years, so it is imperative that it be done right.
Agreed completely, and a full 10-12 foot right shoulder needs to be added to the design as well. Ideally, a minimum of a 4 foot left shoulder, preferably 10-12 foot left shoulder should also be added, but that's not nearly as important as having at least a full right shoulder, and a multi-use trail that's barrier separated.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 09, 2019, 05:08:28 PM
Agreed completely, and a full 10-12 foot right shoulder needs to be added to the design as well. Ideally, a minimum of a 4 foot left shoulder, preferably 10-12 foot left shoulder should also be added, but that's not nearly as important as having at least a full right shoulder, and a multi-use trail that's barrier separated.
A 4-foot left shoulder is Interstate-standard on a 2-lane roadway.

The 10-foot right shoulder would be as well.

Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on December 09, 2019, 05:13:53 PM
Agreed completely, and a full 10-12 foot right shoulder needs to be added to the design as well. Ideally, a minimum of a 4 foot left shoulder, preferably 10-12 foot left shoulder should also be added, but that's not nearly as important as having at least a full right shoulder, and a multi-use trail that's barrier separated.
A 4-foot left shoulder is Interstate-standard on a 2-lane roadway.

The 10-foot right shoulder would be as well.
A 4-foot left and 4-foot right shoulder would be interstate standard, as reduced design standards are permitted over long bridges. Doesn't mean it's preferred.

VDOT has been providing up to 14 foot shoulders on new construction projects such as the new High Rise Bridge, and is on the new HRBT proposal.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 09, 2019, 05:22:46 PM
A 4-foot left shoulder is Interstate-standard on a 2-lane roadway.
The 10-foot right shoulder would be as well.
A 4-foot left and 4-foot right shoulder would be interstate standard, as reduced design standards are permitted over long bridges.
No it is not.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on December 09, 2019, 05:35:33 PM
A 4-foot left shoulder is Interstate-standard on a 2-lane roadway.
The 10-foot right shoulder would be as well.
A 4-foot left and 4-foot right shoulder would be interstate standard, as reduced design standards are permitted over long bridges.
No it is not.
Yes it is.

A Policy on Design Standards - Interstate System - May 2016 (https://www.dot.state.al.us/dsweb/pdf/A%20Policy%20on%20Design%20Standards%20-%20Interstate%20System%20May%202016.pdf)

For new bridge construction -
Quote
Bridges and Other Structures - Cross Section
The width of bridges less than or equal to 200 ft in length shall not be less than the full paved width of the approach roadway, including shoulders. The bridge width is measured between the bridge railing, parapet, or barrier. Long bridges, defined by bridges having an overall length in excess of 200 ft, may have a lesser width and should be analyzed individually. On long bridges, a reduced shoulder width of 4 ft may be used on both the left and the right sides.

For existing bridges being incorporated into the interstate highway system -
Quote
Bridges and Other Structures - Existing Bridges to Remain in Place
Mainline bridges on the Interstate system and bridges on routes to be incorporated into the system may remain in place if, as a minimum, they meet all of the following criteria:
  • For bridges less than or equal to 200 ft in length, the bridge cross section consists of at least 12 ft lanes, 10 ft shoulder on the right, and 3.5 ft shoulder on the left;
  • For long bridges, shoulder width on both the left and right is at least 3.5 ft measured from the edge of the nearest travel lane; and
  • Bridge railing meets or will be upgraded to current standards.

Modern day, interstate highways have been incorporated into the system that traverse long bridges with reduced width, as it is permitted under interstate standards. If it was substandard, FHWA would not permit it or require a design exception.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 09, 2019, 06:03:37 PM
<<< Long bridges, defined by bridges having an overall length in excess of 200 ft >>>

Who was the "engineer" who wrote a statement like that?  Or was it just a paper-pusher with no engineering credentials"
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on December 09, 2019, 06:22:35 PM
<<< Long bridges, defined by bridges having an overall length in excess of 200 ft >>>

Who was the "engineer" who wrote a statement like that?  Or was it just a paper-pusher with no engineering credentials"
I don’t know, but it was also in the 2005 edition, so for the past at least 14 years, bridges with 4 foot left and 4 foot right shoulders do meet interstate standards.

While you may disagree, that’s fine, but that’s straightforward the guidelines if a bridge with such cross section was incorporated into the system. I-295 around Fayetteville, NC was recently approved to be incorporated into the system by the FHWA and it has two bridges over 200 feet in length that have 4 foot right and 4 foot left shoulders. The rest of the interstate has a full cross section and carries over all other bridges. There’s other examples around the country on a case-by-case basis that have had similar treatment in the past decade or two. There’s not any standard requiring the use of full shoulders, it’s simply just a standard procedure on new construction.

I’m not saying either that bridges should be encouraged to be built reduced width. But it shouldn’t be the only thing preventing an entire route to be designated as an interstate highway, such as the case with I-295.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 09, 2019, 09:59:14 PM
Skanska-Led Team Aims for Early 2020 Start on $463M Maryland Bridge
Excerpts:
A joint venture of Skanska, Corman Kokosing Construction Co. and McLean Contracting Co. is moving toward an early 2020 construction start for a $463-million replacement for a 79-year-old bridge across the Potomac River, south of Washington, D.C.
There were other bidders --

The other contenders, in order of MdTA's overall rankings, along with their bids were: Archer Western, $498.4 million; a Granite-Parsons-Middlesex team, $479.1 million; and a Wagman-Trumbull-Weeks team, $605.6 million.

These huge contracts nowadays are usually a consortium of 3 or more contractors.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Alps on December 09, 2019, 10:59:07 PM
<<< Long bridges, defined by bridges having an overall length in excess of 200 ft >>>

Who was the "engineer" who wrote a statement like that?  Or was it just a paper-pusher with no engineering credentials"
Yeah, I've had issues with that, as many overpasses are longer than that. And I also agree that it should not be an exception anymore. We know better. I'm especially concerned with narrow shoulders on a bridge with Nice's profile. If it's a relatively straight and flat bridge, fine, you could coast for a bit if your engine dies for example, but if you're on an upgrade or downgrade, you really need a place to stop. I wish someone from MdSHA would read this thread.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 09, 2019, 11:17:20 PM
<<< Long bridges, defined by bridges having an overall length in excess of 200 ft >>>
Who was the "engineer" who wrote a statement like that?  Or was it just a paper-pusher with no engineering credentials"
Yeah, I've had issues with that, as many overpasses are longer than that. And I also agree that it should not be an exception anymore. We know better. I'm especially concerned with narrow shoulders on a bridge with Nice's profile. If it's a relatively straight and flat bridge, fine, you could coast for a bit if your engine dies for example, but if you're on an upgrade or downgrade, you really need a place to stop. I wish someone from MdSHA would read this thread.
Indeed, calling a 201 foot length bridge a "long bridge."

One mile (5,280 feet) would be my threshold for a "long bridge," and even then there are plenty much longer than that that have full shoulders.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: vdeane on December 10, 2019, 12:50:20 PM
I would probably set the "long bridge" threshold at half a mile, but in any case, I'd argue that the longer the bridge, shoulders only become more necessary, not less.

If I had my way, the long bridge exemption would only be for adding interstates on existing roads with older bridges, and not allowed for new construction.

(personal opinion)
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on December 10, 2019, 02:21:28 PM
I would probably set the "long bridge" threshold at half a mile, but in any case, I'd argue that the longer the bridge, shoulders only become more necessary, not less.

If I had my way, the long bridge exemption would only be for adding interstates on existing roads with older bridges, and not allowed for new construction.

(personal opinion)

I very much agree with your personal opinion.  Long bridges with no shoulders are terribly vulnerable to long queues even for minor incidents like disabled vehicles and fender benders.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 10, 2019, 05:33:18 PM
I would probably set the "long bridge" threshold at half a mile, but in any case, I'd argue that the longer the bridge, shoulders only become more necessary, not less.  If I had my way, the long bridge exemption would only be for adding interstates on existing roads with older bridges, and not allowed for new construction.  (personal opinion)
I very much agree with your personal opinion.  Long bridges with no shoulders are terribly vulnerable to long queues even for minor incidents like disabled vehicles and fender benders.
I would agree with the 0.5 mile or 2,640 foot length threshold.

Even a short bridge of less than 200 feet still can be a problem if there is not a full shoulder.The I-664 bridge-tunnel has 7.7 miles of bridges and all have full 10-foot right shoulders, and that was opened in 1992.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on December 10, 2019, 05:45:47 PM
As I've said before, I think that's really intended for pre-existing roadways being incorporated into the system, less so for new construction.

IMO, replacing / widening an adequate bridge on a future interstate corridor simply to meet the width of the remainder of the roadway shouldn't be the only thing preventing an entire corridor from being designated. Also, there's more than likely other pre-existing substandard bridges on busier interstate routes in the state (whatever state is at question) that have far more priority to be replaced / widened.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 10, 2019, 05:59:07 PM
IMO, replacing / widening an adequate bridge on a future interstate corridor simply to meet the width of the remainder of the roadway shouldn't be the only thing preventing an entire corridor from being designated. Also, there's more than likely other pre-existing substandard bridges on busier interstate routes in the state (whatever state is at question) that have far more priority to be replaced / widened.

Fine.  Focus on them first before allowing Interstate designation on a highway that has bridges that would have been substandard back in the 1970s.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on December 10, 2019, 06:09:23 PM
IMO, replacing / widening an adequate bridge on a future interstate corridor simply to meet the width of the remainder of the roadway shouldn't be the only thing preventing an entire corridor from being designated. Also, there's more than likely other pre-existing substandard bridges on busier interstate routes in the state (whatever state is at question) that have far more priority to be replaced / widened.

Fine.  Focus on them first before allowing Interstate designation on a highway that has bridges that would have been substandard back in the 1970s.
My point is if the rest of the road meets interstate standards with the exception of a single bridge, that should not restrict the other 99.9% of the road to be designated, and it doesn't. That's reflected under official interstate standards, and FHWA has and continue to permit it. See my above comments about I-295 in North Carolina.

If you restrict the designation because a single bridge, now the state is going to have to take out funds to widen / replace it, even if it's completely adequate as is, and competing with other actual needed bridge widening / replacement projects.

Now, if an entire routing is substandard, meaning a narrow cross section thruout, low clearance bridges, numerous narrow bridges, etc. then it definitely needs a full face lift before receiving the designation, and that would be a project for the road itself mostly, not strictly for an interstate designation.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 10, 2019, 08:21:43 PM
Fine.  Focus on them first before allowing Interstate designation on a highway that has bridges that would have been substandard back in the 1970s.
My point is if the rest of the road meets interstate standards with the exception of a single bridge, that should not restrict the other 99.9% of the road to be designated, and it doesn't.
Oh, come on, it's not "99.9%."

The ones I complain about it's more like 10-20% or more, effectively.  Multiple bridges, including the 1,000+ foot long bridge where disabled vehicles and minor-accident vehicles can't get off of the roadway; plus "short" bridges where the cost of shoulders on a bridge 200 feet long or less is a proportionally small cost and it obviates the aforementioned problems that even a small shoulderless bridge can cause.

The parallel HRBT trestle was built with full shoulders and opened in 1976.  A typical example.  I have no sympathy for substandard shoulder designs in 2019.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on December 10, 2019, 08:36:38 PM
Oh, come on, it's not "99.9%."
You're right... the completed I-295 beltway will be 39 miles long from either end of I-95, and the two bridges combined are 1,530 feet that have 4 foot right shoulders.

That's only 99.3% of the length remaining that has an interstate cross section, not 99.9%.

Reasonably though, the two bridges could have the outside 4 foot shoulders widened to 10 feet eventually. The two bridges are 840 and 690 feet long, and were only built back in 2003. I think the biggest priority now though is completing the remaining southern half of the beltway. A new 7-mile section just opened two weeks ago, and another on tract to open next year. After that, there's two more sections to be built, one from I-95 northwards currently under construction, and the last piece slated to begin construction next year.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 10, 2019, 09:00:48 PM
Oh, come on, it's not "99.9%."
You're right... the completed I-295 beltway will be 39 miles long from either end of I-95, and the two bridges combined are 1,530 feet that have 4 foot right shoulders.
That's only 99.3% of the length remaining that has an interstate cross section, not 99.9%.
So averaging that is two bridges each 765 feet long, where disabled vehicles and minor-accident vehicles can't get off of the roadway.

So when the highway backs up for 2 miles (or more), we can exult in the fact that only 0.7% of the mileage has no shoulders. 

Hopefully nobody will have to be shoveled up.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on December 10, 2019, 09:05:24 PM
Oh, come on, it's not "99.9%."
You're right... the completed I-295 beltway will be 39 miles long from either end of I-95, and the two bridges combined are 1,530 feet that have 4 foot right shoulders.
That's only 99.3% of the length remaining that has an interstate cross section, not 99.9%.
So averaging that is two bridges each 765 feet long, where disabled vehicles and minor-accident vehicles can't get off of the roadway.

So when the highway backs up for 2 miles (or more), we can exult in the fact that only 0.7% of the mileage has no shoulders. 

Hopefully nobody will have to be shoveled up.
Anybody ever been shoveled up here (https://www.google.com/maps/@37.5264436,-77.4287062,3a,75y,355.94h,87.78t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sVM2GbG70M6z5AN4iAtFr9w!2e0!7i16384!8i8192!5m1!1e1)? Here (https://www.google.com/maps/@36.5869167,-78.1643017,3a,75y,50.93h,82.21t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1suCOsDh8pCzUM7mvrQdWIHA!2e0!7i13312!8i6656!5m1!1e1)?
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 10, 2019, 09:30:24 PM
So averaging that is two bridges each 765 feet long, where disabled vehicles and minor-accident vehicles can't get off of the roadway.
So when the highway backs up for 2 miles (or more), we can exult in the fact that only 0.7% of the mileage has no shoulders. 
Hopefully nobody will have to be shoveled up.
Anybody ever been shoveled up here (https://www.google.com/maps/@37.5264436,-77.4287062,3a,75y,355.94h,87.78t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sVM2GbG70M6z5AN4iAtFr9w!2e0!7i16384!8i8192!5m1!1e1)? Here (https://www.google.com/maps/@36.5869167,-78.1643017,3a,75y,50.93h,82.21t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1suCOsDh8pCzUM7mvrQdWIHA!2e0!7i13312!8i6656!5m1!1e1)?
Not sure, but that is a 1958 design and a 1965 design; probably subtract 3 years for design approval year, as those are the opening years.

Things were permissible back then that would be substandard if designed today.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on December 10, 2019, 09:42:50 PM
So averaging that is two bridges each 765 feet long, where disabled vehicles and minor-accident vehicles can't get off of the roadway.
So when the highway backs up for 2 miles (or more), we can exult in the fact that only 0.7% of the mileage has no shoulders. 
Hopefully nobody will have to be shoveled up.
Anybody ever been shoveled up here (https://www.google.com/maps/@37.5264436,-77.4287062,3a,75y,355.94h,87.78t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sVM2GbG70M6z5AN4iAtFr9w!2e0!7i16384!8i8192!5m1!1e1)? Here (https://www.google.com/maps/@36.5869167,-78.1643017,3a,75y,50.93h,82.21t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1suCOsDh8pCzUM7mvrQdWIHA!2e0!7i13312!8i6656!5m1!1e1)?
Not sure, but that is a 1958 design and a 1965 design; probably subtract 3 years for design approval year, as those are the opening years.

Things were permissible back then that would be substandard if designed today.
Whether built in 1958, 1965, or 2003, they all equally serve today's traffic needs, and your criticism (though valid) to I-295 applies equally to I-95 and I-85. Just as much as NCDOT should widen the bridge to include full shoulders, VDOT should widen those bridges to include full shoulders. Just as much as Maryland should include full shoulders on the Nice bridge.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 10, 2019, 09:56:40 PM
Whether built in 1958, 1965, or 2003, they all equally serve today's traffic needs, and your criticism (though valid) to I-295 applies equally to I-95 and I-85. Just as much as NCDOT should widen the bridge to include full shoulders, VDOT should widen those bridges to include full shoulders. Just as much as Maryland should include full shoulders on the Nice bridge.
No. 

New freeways and freeway segments and major bridges should be built to modern standards, and that includes the Nice Bridge.  The idea that they should be allowed without shoulders just because every 50+ year old bridge hasn't been widened is fallacious.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Alps on December 10, 2019, 10:55:33 PM
Whether built in 1958, 1965, or 2003, they all equally serve today's traffic needs, and your criticism (though valid) to I-295 applies equally to I-95 and I-85. Just as much as NCDOT should widen the bridge to include full shoulders, VDOT should widen those bridges to include full shoulders. Just as much as Maryland should include full shoulders on the Nice bridge.
No. 

New freeways and freeway segments and major bridges should be built to modern standards, and that includes the Nice Bridge.  The idea that they should be allowed without shoulders just because every 50+ year old bridge hasn't been widened is fallacious.
What do you mean "no"? He just said the exact point you're saying.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 10, 2019, 11:05:36 PM
Whether built in 1958, 1965, or 2003, they all equally serve today's traffic needs, and your criticism (though valid) to I-295 applies equally to I-95 and I-85. Just as much as NCDOT should widen the bridge to include full shoulders, VDOT should widen those bridges to include full shoulders. Just as much as Maryland should include full shoulders on the Nice bridge.
No. 

New freeways and freeway segments and major bridges should be built to modern standards, and that includes the Nice Bridge.  The idea that they should be allowed without shoulders just because every 50+ year old bridge hasn't been widened is fallacious.
What do you mean "no"? He just said the exact point you're saying.
I see that the "no" applies to his first two sentences.

The third would indeed be a "yes."
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Alps on December 11, 2019, 08:05:31 AM
Whether built in 1958, 1965, or 2003, they all equally serve today's traffic needs, and your criticism (though valid) to I-295 applies equally to I-95 and I-85. Just as much as NCDOT should widen the bridge to include full shoulders, VDOT should widen those bridges to include full shoulders. Just as much as Maryland should include full shoulders on the Nice bridge.
No. 

New freeways and freeway segments and major bridges should be built to modern standards, and that includes the Nice Bridge.  The idea that they should be allowed without shoulders just because every 50+ year old bridge hasn't been widened is fallacious.
What do you mean "no"? He just said the exact point you're saying.
I see that the "no" applies to his first two sentences.

The third would indeed be a "yes."
Why shouldn't existing bridges be widened to full shoulders for safety?
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on December 11, 2019, 08:14:20 AM
Whether built in 1958, 1965, or 2003, they all equally serve today's traffic needs, and your criticism (though valid) to I-295 applies equally to I-95 and I-85. Just as much as NCDOT should widen the bridge to include full shoulders, VDOT should widen those bridges to include full shoulders. Just as much as Maryland should include full shoulders on the Nice bridge.
No.   New freeways and freeway segments and major bridges should be built to modern standards, and that includes the Nice Bridge.  The idea that they should be allowed without shoulders just because every 50+ year old bridge hasn't been widened is fallacious.
What do you mean "no"? He just said the exact point you're saying.
I see that the "no" applies to his first two sentences.
The third would indeed be a "yes."
Why shouldn't existing bridges be widened to full shoulders for safety?
I didn't say that existing bridges shouldn't be widened to full shoulders for safety.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on February 13, 2020, 11:54:37 PM
Contract awarded for the replacement of the Harry W. Nice/Thomas "Mac" Middleton Bridge that carries U.S. 301 between King George County, Virginia and Charles County, Maryland.

This was apparently awarded by the MDTA Board in 2019, but I just heard about it.

MDTA announcement (https://mdta.maryland.gov/Capital_Projects/NewNiceBridgeProject/Home) (includes video).

ENR: Skanska-Led Team Aims for Early 2020 Start on $463M Maryland Bridge (https://www.enr.com/articles/48262-skanska-led-team-aims-for-early-2020-start-on-463m-maryland-bridge)
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on February 14, 2020, 05:50:41 AM
Extensive discussion upthread, including complaints about lack of full shoulders!
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: seicer on February 14, 2020, 07:52:09 AM
"To expand practical access, the new Nice/Middleton Bridge will include several safety enhancements for bicyclists, including bicycle-friendly roadway joints and intelligent transportation systems tools such as lighting and signage."

Bull****.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: jeffandnicole on February 14, 2020, 07:57:46 AM
"To expand practical access, the new Nice/Middleton Bridge will include several safety enhancements for bicyclists, including bicycle-friendly roadway joints and intelligent transportation systems tools such as lighting and signage."

Bull****.

Note they didn't say bicycle-friendly lanes! LOL
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on February 14, 2020, 08:07:19 AM
"To expand practical access, the new Nice/Middleton Bridge will include several safety enhancements for bicyclists, including bicycle-friendly roadway joints and intelligent transportation systems tools such as lighting and signage."
That 2 foot shoulder besides 60+ mph traffic will be a major improvement!
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: ixnay on February 14, 2020, 08:35:16 AM
Contract awarded for the replacement of the Harry W. Nice/Thomas "Mac" Middleton Bridge that carries U.S. 301 between King George County, Virginia and Charles County, Maryland.

This was apparently awarded by the MDTA Board in 2019, but I just heard about it.

MDTA announcement (https://mdta.maryland.gov/Capital_Projects/NewNiceBridgeProject/Home) (includes video).

ENR: Skanska-Led Team Aims for Early 2020 Start on $463M Maryland Bridge (https://www.enr.com/articles/48262-skanska-led-team-aims-for-early-2020-start-on-463m-maryland-bridge)

Skanska also presided over the building of the cable-stayed Delaware 1 bridge over Indian River Inlet.

ixnay
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on February 14, 2020, 10:09:30 AM
"To expand practical access, the new Nice/Middleton Bridge will include several safety enhancements for bicyclists, including bicycle-friendly roadway joints and intelligent transportation systems tools such as lighting and signage."  Bull****.
Body bag up for safety.

Skanska also presided over the building of the cable-stayed Delaware 1 bridge over Indian River Inlet.
They did a good job from a construction management standpoint.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: vdeane on February 14, 2020, 01:04:09 PM
Seriously, they should at least have full right shoulders.  IMO they should just ban bikes from the bridge, given that it will be a four-lane divided highway with traffic going by at 60 mph and nowhere for the bikes to go but the travel lanes.  The shoulders would also have provided space for a vehicle to go if they break down.  I don't understand how this travesty was allowed.

It's not good for cars either - who wants to slow down from 60 to 15 because they're stuck behind a bike?  And that's assuming they even see the bike, since nobody would expect a bike to be in the main travel lane on that type of road!  What was Maryland even thinking?
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: 1995hoo on February 14, 2020, 02:20:26 PM
I respect the idea of having a bicycle facility, especially given that there is nowhere else to cross the Potomac south of the Wilson Bridge, but I really wonder how many cyclists they actually expect to get on that bridge. While I know there is a naval facility on the Virginia side, are there really that many bike commuters heading there from Southern Maryland? I highly doubt it. I'm sure there might be some long-distance cyclists on occasion, or the occasional person like my brother who used to do 100-mile rides while training for a Pittsburgh-to-DC charity ride, but are there really enough to justify the expense of a fully-separated bike facility?
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on February 14, 2020, 02:49:23 PM
I respect the idea of having a bicycle facility, especially given that there is nowhere else to cross the Potomac south of the Wilson Bridge, but I really wonder how many cyclists they actually expect to get on that bridge. While I know there is a naval facility on the Virginia side, are there really that many bike commuters heading there from Southern Maryland? I highly doubt it. I'm sure there might be some long-distance cyclists on occasion, or the ocasional person like my brother who used to do 100-mile rides while training for a Pittsburgh-to-DC charity ride, but are there really enough to justify the expense of a fully-separated bike facility?

What is being built now does not accommodate bike traffic.  A two foot shoulder next to freeway-speed traffic is IMO inherently unsafe. 

$64 million sounds like a lot of money, but spread over an expected 100 year lifespan of this structure, it's  a lot less. 

This is also prime long-distance bike riding territory - fairly flat, and a long biking season.  On the Virginia side of the bridge, there's also the King George Rail Trail, which uses the old railroad to NSF Dahlgren. The trail runs west to VA-605 near the landfill and refuse incinerator at Sealston and ends there because trash is brought in by railroad to this facility, so the Navy rail spur is an active railroad between Sealston and the RF&P subdivision of CSX in Fredericksburg.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: 1995hoo on February 14, 2020, 03:05:03 PM
I respect the idea of having a bicycle facility, especially given that there is nowhere else to cross the Potomac south of the Wilson Bridge, but I really wonder how many cyclists they actually expect to get on that bridge. While I know there is a naval facility on the Virginia side, are there really that many bike commuters heading there from Southern Maryland? I highly doubt it. I'm sure there might be some long-distance cyclists on occasion, or the ocasional person like my brother who used to do 100-mile rides while training for a Pittsburgh-to-DC charity ride, but are there really enough to justify the expense of a fully-separated bike facility?

What is being built now does not accommodate bike traffic. ....

Right, I understood that, but the other folks were speculating on whether there should be a facility.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: froggie on February 14, 2020, 04:00:09 PM
Full shoulders would have offered a facility...not as safe as a separate path, to be fair, but at least a path out of traffic, given that bicycles typically need a minimum of 4-5ft of width.

And there are safety benefits for shoulders that go far beyond a place for bikes to ride.  Not including them is a serious shortcoming.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: hbelkins on February 14, 2020, 04:07:21 PM
Full shoulders would have offered a facility...not as safe as a separate path, to be fair, but at least a path out of traffic, given that bicycles typically need a minimum of 4-5ft of width.

And there are safety benefits for shoulders that go far beyond a place for bikes to ride.  Not including them is a serious shortcoming.

How was Kentucky able to build two four-lane bridges across two major lakes with separate bike facilities, but Maryland can't build one on a toll facility?
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: sprjus4 on February 14, 2020, 04:26:10 PM
^

Here's (https://www.google.com/maps/@36.7393183,-76.2921179,3a,75y,232.79h,85.75t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1s4J2ygKi7cxe5zA1R-nh2gQ!2e0!7i16384!8i8192) a good example of how such a bridge should be constructed.

Here's (https://www.google.com/maps/@39.2128787,-76.533546,3a,39.8y,49.53h,85.61t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sqelaTSF3q3KkbrqtmEWD8Q!2e0!7i13312!8i6656) what is actually being constructed.

It's laughable IMO. If it was a roadway with light traffic volumes and no need for bicycle access, I could understand it, but that's not the case here.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on February 14, 2020, 05:35:21 PM
Here's (https://www.google.com/maps/@36.7393183,-76.2921179,3a,75y,232.79h,85.75t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1s4J2ygKi7cxe5zA1R-nh2gQ!2e0!7i16384!8i8192) a good example of how such a bridge should be constructed.
Drove under and over them today.   In the ballpark of the length and height of the US-301 bridge. 
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: DJStephens on February 16, 2020, 02:56:19 PM
Seriously, they should at least have full right shoulders.  IMO they should just ban bikes from the bridge, given that it will be a four-lane divided highway with traffic going by at 60 mph and nowhere for the bikes to go but the travel lanes.  The shoulders would also have provided space for a vehicle to go if they break down.  I don't understand how this travesty was allowed.

It's not good for cars either - who wants to slow down from 60 to 15 because they're stuck behind a bike?  And that's assuming they even see the bike, since nobody would expect a bike to be in the main travel lane on that type of road!  What was Maryland even thinking?

Guessing Maryland has greater jurisdiction over this bridge, versus Virginia, so Maryland is the primary decision maker?   Given it is Rahn (their DOT chief) am not surprised at the decision here of design regression.  Have viewed a great deal of his design regression here in New Mexico. 
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on February 16, 2020, 03:06:17 PM
Seriously, they should at least have full right shoulders.  IMO they should just ban bikes from the bridge, given that it will be a four-lane divided highway with traffic going by at 60 mph and nowhere for the bikes to go but the travel lanes.  The shoulders would also have provided space for a vehicle to go if they break down.  I don't understand how this travesty was allowed.

It's not good for cars either - who wants to slow down from 60 to 15 because they're stuck behind a bike?  And that's assuming they even see the bike, since nobody would expect a bike to be in the main travel lane on that type of road!  What was Maryland even thinking?

Guessing Maryland has greater jurisdiction over this bridge, versus Virginia, so Maryland is the primary decision maker?   Given it is Rahn (their DOT chief) am not surprised at the decision here of design regression.  Have viewed a great deal of his design regression here in New Mexico. 

Dating back to the 1632 royal grant of land by King Charles I to the Calvert family (including the Lords Baltimore who headed the Calvert family) that is now Maryland, the entire Potomac River, up to the "low water mark" on the Virginia shore, is Maryland territory. 

Pete Rahn was the Secretary of the Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) and that job is the chair of the Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) board, which makes the secretary the leader of MDTA too (MDTA is the state's toll road, toll bridge and toll tunnel agency). 

I say this in past-tense because Rahn retired from the job in January 2020. 
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: DJStephens on February 16, 2020, 03:11:20 PM
Thank you for the clarification(s).  Figured it was something like that - most of the crossing was in Maryland's jurisdiction.  So where is Rahn heading next??  Having been in New Mexico, Kansas, Missouri and most recently Maryland.   
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on February 16, 2020, 03:28:36 PM
Thank you for the clarification(s).  Figured it was something like that - most of the crossing was in Maryland's jurisdiction.  So where is Rahn heading next??  Having been in New Mexico, Kansas, Missouri and most recently Maryland.

News media here said that he was moving back to New Mexico to be with his wife.  Apparently he is not looking for another job. 

Baltimore Sun ran an article in December 2019 about his (then impending) retirement here (https://www.baltimoresun.com/politics/bs-md-pol-20191209-bsuwzpnnv5ht3ot2e7ogkvkl2i-story.html).
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on February 16, 2020, 03:29:03 PM
Guessing Maryland has greater jurisdiction over this bridge, versus Virginia, so Maryland is the primary decision maker?   Given it is Rahn (their DOT chief) am not surprised at the decision here of design regression.  Have viewed a great deal of his design regression here in New Mexico. 
Dating back to the 1632 royal grant of land by King Charles I to the Calvert family (including the Lords Baltimore) that is now Maryland, the entire Potomac River, up to the "low water mark" on the Virginia shore, is Maryland territory. 
… meaning that Maryland has complete ownership and administration of this bridge project.

Virginia has ownership and administration of the southern land approaches part of the project.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on February 16, 2020, 03:41:41 PM
Guessing Maryland has greater jurisdiction over this bridge, versus Virginia, so Maryland is the primary decision maker?   Given it is Rahn (their DOT chief) am not surprised at the decision here of design regression.  Have viewed a great deal of his design regression here in New Mexico. 
Dating back to the 1632 royal grant of land by King Charles I to the Calvert family (including the Lords Baltimore) that is now Maryland, the entire Potomac River, up to the "low water mark" on the Virginia shore, is Maryland territory. 
… meaning that Maryland has complete ownership and administration of this bridge project.

Virginia has ownership and administration of the southern land approaches part of the project.

MDTA is building the re-alignment of U.S. 301 to the new crossing on the King George County, Virginia approach, though VDOT was in charge of real estate acquisition needed and that part of the project is being designed and engineered to comply with VDOT design standards.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: vdeane on February 16, 2020, 08:03:25 PM
Seriously, they should at least have full right shoulders.  IMO they should just ban bikes from the bridge, given that it will be a four-lane divided highway with traffic going by at 60 mph and nowhere for the bikes to go but the travel lanes.  The shoulders would also have provided space for a vehicle to go if they break down.  I don't understand how this travesty was allowed.

It's not good for cars either - who wants to slow down from 60 to 15 because they're stuck behind a bike?  And that's assuming they even see the bike, since nobody would expect a bike to be in the main travel lane on that type of road!  What was Maryland even thinking?

Guessing Maryland has greater jurisdiction over this bridge, versus Virginia, so Maryland is the primary decision maker?   Given it is Rahn (their DOT chief) am not surprised at the decision here of design regression.  Have viewed a great deal of his design regression here in New Mexico. 
Still, there are landings and approaches in VA, and I imagine VDOT approval would be needed to touch them.  Plus the project would have to go through a federal environmental review process, likely obtaining permits from several agencies.  And, of course, there are the decision makers in Maryland, who must be completely brain dead to think that this was a good idea.  I cannot possibly believe that nobody had a problem with this.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: interstate73 on February 16, 2020, 08:38:16 PM
Might they be able to keep the old bridge for bike and pedestrian traffic? Still wouldn't excuse the lack of full shoulders on a brand new bridge in the year of our Lord 2020 even if they did though...

Edit: Just took a look at the project website and yeah they are planning to take down the old bridge. Really inexcusable that this design made it to approval
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on February 16, 2020, 09:18:00 PM
Still, there are landings and approaches in VA, and I imagine VDOT approval would be needed to touch them.  Plus the project would have to go through a federal environmental review process, likely obtaining permits from several agencies.  And, of course, there are the decision makers in Maryland, who must be completely brain dead to think that this was a good idea.  I cannot possibly believe that nobody had a problem with this.
VDOT developed their project for widening/realigning the southern land approach, with preliminary engineering, design, public hearings and right-of-way acquisition.

Cost - $13 million
Purpose – Widen and realign the Virginia approach to the Route 301 bridge over the
Potomac River in support of, and coordination with, the Maryland Transportation Authority’s Nice-Middleton Bridge Replacement project. 
Improvements – Widen Route 301 to four lanes, relocate Roseland Road intersection, install southbound turn lane at Barnesfield Road.
 
State Project – 0301-048, P101, UPC 114048
Federal Project: NHPP-048-6(058)

http://www.virginiadot.org/Projects/Fredericksburg/asset_upload_file711_135477.pdf
. . . . . . .

They also have it programmed in the Six Year Program --

UPC  114048
Project  NICE BRIDGE REPLACEMENT - APPROACH ROADWAY IMPROVMENTS
Scope of Work   Reconstruction w/o Added Capacity
Estimated Cost     (Thousands) Schedule
Prelim. Eng. (PE)     $1,000      Underway
Right of Way (RW)   $2,800      FY2022
Construction (CN)    $9,200      FY2023
Total Estimate        $13,000

http://syip.virginiadot.org/Pages/lineitemDetails.aspx?syp_scenario_id=247&line_item_id=1576035
. . . . . . . . .

It appears to me that VDOT will award their own contract for the Virginia portion … or is MDTA going to construct it as part of their contract for the bridge and northern approaches?
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on February 16, 2020, 09:24:09 PM
Might they be able to keep the old bridge for bike and pedestrian traffic? Still wouldn't excuse the lack of full shoulders on a brand new bridge in the year of our Lord 2020 even if they did though...
Edit: Just took a look at the project website and yeah they are planning to take down the old bridge. Really inexcusable that this design made it to approval
The old bridge would cost way too much to maintain, and while small there would be some water flow friction that would necessitate removing the old bridge.

The solution would be to include 10-foot right shoulders on the new bridge.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: D-Dey65 on February 16, 2020, 10:29:20 PM
Still, there are landings and approaches in VA, and I imagine VDOT approval would be needed to touch them.  Plus the project would have to go through a federal environmental review process, likely obtaining permits from several agencies.  And, of course, there are the decision makers in Maryland, who must be completely brain dead to think that this was a good idea.  I cannot possibly believe that nobody had a problem with this.
VDOT developed their project for widening/realigning the southern land approach, with preliminary engineering, design, public hearings and right-of-way acquisition.

Cost - $13 million
Purpose – Widen and realign the Virginia approach to the Route 301 bridge over the
Potomac River in support of, and coordination with, the Maryland Transportation Authority’s Nice-Middleton Bridge Replacement project. 
Improvements – Widen Route 301 to four lanes, relocate Roseland Road intersection, install southbound turn lane at Barnesfield Road.
 
State Project – 0301-048, P101, UPC 114048
Federal Project: NHPP-048-6(058)

http://www.virginiadot.org/Projects/Fredericksburg/asset_upload_file711_135477.pdf
. . . . . . .

They also have it programmed in the Six Year Program --

UPC  114048
Project  NICE BRIDGE REPLACEMENT - APPROACH ROADWAY IMPROVMENTS
Scope of Work   Reconstruction w/o Added Capacity
Estimated Cost     (Thousands) Schedule
Prelim. Eng. (PE)     $1,000      Underway
Right of Way (RW)   $2,800      FY2022
Construction (CN)    $9,200      FY2023
Total Estimate        $13,000

http://syip.virginiadot.org/Pages/lineitemDetails.aspx?syp_scenario_id=247&line_item_id=1576035
. . . . . . . . .

It appears to me that VDOT will award their own contract for the Virginia portion … or is MDTA going to construct it as part of their contract for the bridge and northern approaches?
I'd better get a picture of the Blue Star Memorial Highway marker at the current bridge before they start working on the replacement. Originally I was torn between going on US 301 so I could get some shots of the run down no-frills motels across the Potomac, and the newer version of the US 1 Occoquan River Bridges. Now I realize I'm going to have to get US 1 on the way back down.

Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: ixnay on February 17, 2020, 08:22:42 AM
Thank you for the clarification(s).  Figured it was something like that - most of the crossing was in Maryland's jurisdiction.  So where is Rahn heading next??  Having been in New Mexico, Kansas, Missouri and most recently Maryland.

News media here said that he was moving back to New Mexico to be with his wife.  Apparently he is not looking for another job. 

Baltimore Sun ran an article in December 2019 about his (then impending) retirement here (https://www.baltimoresun.com/politics/bs-md-pol-20191209-bsuwzpnnv5ht3ot2e7ogkvkl2i-story.html).

The acting secretary is Greg Slater.

http://www.mdot.maryland.gov/newMDOT/Secretarys_Welcome/secretary_message.html

ixnay
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on February 17, 2020, 09:00:06 AM
The old bridge would cost way too much to maintain, and while small there would be some water flow friction that would necessitate removing the old bridge.

The solution would be to include 10-foot right shoulders on the new bridge.

The old bridge dates to 1940, when it was completed and opened to traffic. 

I am not aware of any formal study having been made of retaining the old structure as a pedestrian and bike crossing.  The question that would need to be answered is this - what are the costs to keep it safe for use for that purpose?  Presumably the costs would go down since there would no longer be heavy trucks crossing, but even with just light use, the structure still needs to be inspected on a periodic basis and the structural steel needs to be painted every so often too.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on February 17, 2020, 10:59:48 AM
It appears to me that VDOT will award their own contract for the Virginia portion … or is MDTA going to construct it as part of their contract for the bridge and northern approaches?

My understanding is that the MDTA contract for the bridge and northern approach will also cover the re-alignment of U.S. 301 in King George County. 
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: vdeane on February 17, 2020, 09:00:47 PM
Still, there are landings and approaches in VA, and I imagine VDOT approval would be needed to touch them.  Plus the project would have to go through a federal environmental review process, likely obtaining permits from several agencies.  And, of course, there are the decision makers in Maryland, who must be completely brain dead to think that this was a good idea.  I cannot possibly believe that nobody had a problem with this.
VDOT developed their project for widening/realigning the southern land approach, with preliminary engineering, design, public hearings and right-of-way acquisition.

Cost - $13 million
Purpose – Widen and realign the Virginia approach to the Route 301 bridge over the
Potomac River in support of, and coordination with, the Maryland Transportation Authority’s Nice-Middleton Bridge Replacement project. 
Improvements – Widen Route 301 to four lanes, relocate Roseland Road intersection, install southbound turn lane at Barnesfield Road.
 
State Project – 0301-048, P101, UPC 114048
Federal Project: NHPP-048-6(058)

http://www.virginiadot.org/Projects/Fredericksburg/asset_upload_file711_135477.pdf
. . . . . . .

They also have it programmed in the Six Year Program --

UPC  114048
Project  NICE BRIDGE REPLACEMENT - APPROACH ROADWAY IMPROVMENTS
Scope of Work   Reconstruction w/o Added Capacity
Estimated Cost     (Thousands) Schedule
Prelim. Eng. (PE)     $1,000      Underway
Right of Way (RW)   $2,800      FY2022
Construction (CN)    $9,200      FY2023
Total Estimate        $13,000

http://syip.virginiadot.org/Pages/lineitemDetails.aspx?syp_scenario_id=247&line_item_id=1576035
. . . . . . . . .

It appears to me that VDOT will award their own contract for the Virginia portion … or is MDTA going to construct it as part of their contract for the bridge and northern approaches?
Even so, Google has the state border here (https://www.google.com/maps/@38.3592741,-77.0145741,3a,81.6y,277.77h,66.48t/data=!3m7!1e1!3m5!1sH7ZOaFOOYAmbowLyp3OExA!2e0!6s%2F%2Fgeo3.ggpht.com%2Fcbk%3Fpanoid%3DH7ZOaFOOYAmbowLyp3OExA%26output%3Dthumbnail%26cb_client%3Dmaps_sv.tactile.gps%26thumb%3D2%26w%3D203%26h%3D100%26yaw%3D255.62326%26pitch%3D0%26thumbfov%3D100!7i13312!8i6656), and in any case it's defined as the low watermark, not inland, so the footing of the bridge is still in Virginia and therefore VDOT jurisdiction, regardless of whether Maryland is doing the work or not.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on February 17, 2020, 09:16:10 PM
It appears to me that VDOT will award their own contract for the Virginia portion … or is MDTA going to construct it as part of their contract for the bridge and northern approaches?
My understanding is that the MDTA contract for the bridge and northern approach will also cover the re-alignment of U.S. 301 in King George County. 
It is hard to tell from the VDOT cites and the MDTA news releases.

The SYIP lists it as an 0.5 mile VDOT project, with right-of-way acquisition not yet complete, and construction 2 years in the future --
Right of Way (RW)   $2,800      FY2022
Construction (CN)    $9,200      FY2023

Nevertheless, this could be part of the bridge and approaches contract, and the VA part won't need to be built immediately when the bridge will take 3 years to build.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: Beltway on February 17, 2020, 09:20:51 PM
Even so, Google has the state border here (https://www.google.com/maps/@38.3592741,-77.0145741,3a,81.6y,277.77h,66.48t/data=!3m7!1e1!3m5!1sH7ZOaFOOYAmbowLyp3OExA!2e0!6s%2F%2Fgeo3.ggpht.com%2Fcbk%3Fpanoid%3DH7ZOaFOOYAmbowLyp3OExA%26output%3Dthumbnail%26cb_client%3Dmaps_sv.tactile.gps%26thumb%3D2%26w%3D203%26h%3D100%26yaw%3D255.62326%26pitch%3D0%26thumbfov%3D100!7i13312!8i6656), and in any case it's defined as the low watermark, not inland, so the footing of the bridge is still in Virginia and therefore VDOT jurisdiction, regardless of whether Maryland is doing the work or not.
Indeed, about 305 feet of the bridge is in Virginia.

The Woodrow Wilson Bridge has about 2,020 feet in Virginia, but the project agreement gave the whole bridge project to MSHA for construction administration.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on February 17, 2020, 10:29:06 PM
Indeed, about 305 feet of the bridge is in Virginia.

The Woodrow Wilson Bridge has about 2,020 feet in Virginia, but the project agreement gave the whole bridge project to MSHA for construction administration.

This is consistent with how the American Legion Bridge on I-495 between Great Falls, Virginia and Carderock, Maryland was re-decked and widened out to 10 total lanes in the late 1980's or early 1990's.  The construction contract went a short distance beyond the first expansion joint of the bridge on the Virginia side (which is well into the Commonwealth), since work to hook up to Virginia's part of I-495 had to be done with the new configuration of the bridge.  It may have gone as far back as the bridge that carries the George Washington Memorial Parkway over I-495, but I do not remember any longer (it was a long time ago).
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: D-Dey65 on May 08, 2020, 02:34:59 PM
Is the construction of the new bridge still on the same schedule? Because I have a bad feeling there's no way in hell I'm going to get a picture of the Blue Star Memorial Highway marker near the Dahlgren Wayside Park.
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: cpzilliacus on May 08, 2020, 11:42:34 PM
Is the construction of the new bridge still on the same schedule? Because I have a bad feeling there's no way in hell I'm going to get a picture of the Blue Star Memorial Highway marker near the Dahlgren Wayside Park.

A contract has been awarded, but I have not been down there since before the Maryland lock-down started (come to think of it, I was there last November). 
Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: D-Dey65 on May 09, 2020, 12:32:50 AM
A contract has been awarded, but I have not been down there since before the Maryland lock-down started (come to think of it, I was there last November). 
Yeah, that's when I was there. I snapped a few pics of the wayside park, but didn't think to get the Blue Star Memorial Highway plaque.

Title: Re: U.S. 301 Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge
Post by: jmacswimmer on July 29, 2020, 09:40:29 AM
MDTA posted a short video on their twitter showing, among other things, early mobilization efforts by the contractor: