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Author Topic: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network  (Read 11147 times)

NE2

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Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« on: December 14, 2013, 06:30:52 PM »

http://www.ops.fhwa.dot.gov/freight/infrastructure/pfn/index.htm
Quote
MAP-21 calls for the Secretary of Transportation to designate up to 27,000 miles on existing interstate and other roadways, with a possible addition of 3,000 miles in the future, as a PFN to help states strategically direct resources toward improving freight movement. The Federal Register notice identifies more than 41,000 miles of comprehensive, connected roadway that a Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) analysis shows would be necessary to transporting goods efficiently on highways throughout the nation to make up the highway PFN.
I don't get the 27,000 mile system; it seems to lack basic connectivity. The 41,000 mile system makes more sense (though seems rather designed by committee) and includes most Interstates (but has some strange omissions, such as I-76 west). More interesting is the intercity non-Interstates that are included:
*AK 1, Soldotna to Homer (pretty much an extension of I-A3)
*CA 58, Bakersfield to Barstow (but nothing west to I-5)
*CA 86/78/111/7, Indio to Calexico (they screwed up the Indio end by using the pre-86S route)
*CA 99, Wheeler Ridge to Sacramento, and connections to I-5 (CA 4, CA 120)
*Florida's Turnpike, Orlando to Wildwood
*a bunch of crap in Hawaii and Puerto Rico
*LA 21, Covington to Bush (there must be something major in Shrub)
*US 50-301, Annapolis to Chester (extending I-595)
*US 201, Fairfield to Canada
*US 2/52, Grand Forks to Portal
*US 1/NJ 29, I-95 Langhorne (why not I-276?) to I-295 Trenton (why isn't I-195 part of it? why the hell isn't the NJTP south of exit 6 part of it?)
*US 30, York to Lancaster (why not PA 283?)
*US 57
*US 77/I-69E, Mexico to Robstown (no other major parts of I-69)
*TX 178/NM 136, El Paso to Mexico
*TX 115, McAllen to Mexico
*WA 539/546/9, Bellingham to Sumas
*US 45/41 (I-41), Milwaukee to Green Bay (but not I-43)


For comparison:
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froggie

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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #1 on: December 14, 2013, 06:38:48 PM »

Quote
*US 30, York to Lancaster (why not PA 283?)

Speaking from personal experience, traffic is using a York-Lancaster-Reading-Allentown routing to avoid both Harrisburg and the I-95 corridor.
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NE2

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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #2 on: December 14, 2013, 06:50:37 PM »

A few interesting comments:
http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=FHWA-2013-0050-0003
Quote
We at ALDOT have noticed the omission of I-22 Memphis to Birmingham from the proposed network miles, and attribute this to the uncompleted section and the interchange where it ties into I-65. If there are additional sections or miles added to the network, we want to make sure I-22 is included. This could be a high volume corridor (Memphis I-22 Birmingham I-20 Atlanta) with completion of the interchange.

http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=FHWA-2013-0050-0019
Quote
We [Ozarks Transportation Organization] are currently in the process of requesting that an Interstate Loop around the City of Springfield be designated. This loop would run along US65 to US60 and around to MO360. We would like to request that this new Interstate loop be added to the Primary Freight Network.
(already covered in http://www.aaroads.com/forum/index.php?topic=10896)
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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #3 on: December 14, 2013, 06:52:11 PM »

Quote
*US 30, York to Lancaster (why not PA 283?)

Speaking from personal experience, traffic is using a York-Lancaster-Reading-Allentown routing to avoid both Harrisburg and the I-95 corridor.
The only roads included in this area are I-83 from Harrisburg to York and US 30 to Lancaster.
http://www.ops.fhwa.dot.gov/freight/infrastructure/pfn/state_maps/pa_pennsylvania.pdf
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Alps

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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #4 on: December 15, 2013, 08:00:45 AM »

Quote
*US 30, York to Lancaster (why not PA 283?)

Speaking from personal experience, traffic is using a York-Lancaster-Reading-Allentown routing to avoid both Harrisburg and the I-95 corridor.
The only roads included in this area are I-83 from Harrisburg to York and US 30 to Lancaster.
http://www.ops.fhwa.dot.gov/freight/infrastructure/pfn/state_maps/pa_pennsylvania.pdf
Does the F in FHWA stand for Fail?

(Answer: This is probably more politically driven than it is engineering-based.)

cpzilliacus

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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #5 on: December 15, 2013, 09:15:58 AM »

(Answer: This is probably more politically driven than it is engineering-based.)

I think you have the correct diagnosis, Doctor.

Congress did indeed mandate that the network could be no more than 27,000 miles long.

According to this, the entire freight network serving the District of Columbia is the D.C. section of the Woodrow Wilson Bridge.  And there are pieces arbitrarily excluded from I-66 between Front Royal and Haymarket in Virginia; and a section of I-83 between I-695 and the Maryland/Pennsylvania state line was also chopped out.
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Anthony_JK

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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #6 on: December 15, 2013, 10:08:29 AM »

One thing I find hilarious about this "network": the segment of I-10 between Lafayette and Baton Rouge isn't included in the primary network in spite of I-10 being the principal anchor of traffic in South Louisiana...but the proposed and unconstructed I-49 Connector project (part of the I-49 South/US 90 freeway upgrade) through Lafayette *is* included. (Update: The segment of US 90/Future I-49 South down to LA 88 is also included as well.) A sign, perhaps, of a possible funding source??
« Last Edit: December 15, 2013, 10:20:27 AM by Anthony_JK »
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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #7 on: December 15, 2013, 04:15:36 PM »

The 27,000 mile network is literally "WTF?".  Such as that tiny segment of I-90 in western NY that was excluded, even though it's way too short to include any interchanges.  Even the larger system excludes I-87 between the Berkshire Spur (which has the non-interstate segment missing, odd given that the I-87 freight section ends there but trucks can't go anywhere else!  Do they really want the trucks to go through Albany rather than an under-utilized segment of Thruway?) and I-84 for some reason.  The entire thing makes no sense.

Even the extended system encourages shunpiking via I-290 and I-495 in MA.

I can understand DC having hardly any miles, though, given that any trucks inside the beltway are probably local deliveries.
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cpzilliacus

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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #8 on: December 15, 2013, 05:39:06 PM »

I can understand DC having hardly any miles, though, given that any trucks inside the beltway are probably local deliveries.

Truck drivers using GPS and coming north on I-95 approaching Springfield frequently blunder onto I-395 come across the 14th Street Bridge, S.W. into D.C.  It used to be they had a choice to go through Third Street Tunnel (posted maximum height 13' 0") or to continue straight ahead to I-295 south. 

Thanks to the 11th Street Bridge, S.E. project, it is now possible for traffic to go north on D.C. 295 in the direction of U.S. 50 and the Baltimore-Washington Parkway ("Secret" Md. 295).

So thanks to GPS, D.C. has more (unwanted/unintentional) truck traffic than it did before.
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NE2

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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #9 on: December 15, 2013, 05:41:50 PM »

This thread has more unwanted/offtopic CP than it did before.
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J N Winkler

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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #10 on: December 15, 2013, 06:08:06 PM »

A couple of thoughts:

*  We have been talking about heavy-traffic routes that have been excluded from either the 27,000-mile or 41,000-mile proposed networks.  Which, if any, of these omissions carry heavy freight traffic?

*  Is "need to spend" an implicit criterion?  In other words, might some routes (perhaps even carrying heavy freight traffic) be excluded on the basis that they have enough capacity to handle existing and projected volumes without bottlenecking?  (This might account for the omission of Nebraska/Colorado I-76.)
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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #11 on: December 15, 2013, 06:22:00 PM »

*  We have been talking about heavy-traffic routes that have been excluded from either the 27,000-mile or 41,000-mile proposed networks.  Which, if any, of these omissions carry heavy freight traffic?
The New Jersey Turnpike?

Also, http://www.ops.fhwa.dot.gov/freight/freight_analysis/nat_freight_stats/nhsmajortrkrts2007.htm shows that US 69-75 north of Dallas should perhaps be included.
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Revive 755

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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #12 on: December 15, 2013, 08:27:04 PM »

Does the F in FHWA stand for Fail?

If FHWA along selected some of the routes in Chicagoland, then yes.  For the route that appears to break off I-55 at I-294, it goes up I-294 to I-290, apparently goes through that bloody awful loop ramp to WB I-290, then up I-290 to I-90.  However, I-294 appears back on the network north of I-90.

The I-29/Nebraska 2 corridor ought to be part of the network more so than I-70 across Kansas and eastern Colorado.

And how can I-335 in Kansas be on the network?  (Yeah, I know - less mileage than using I-35)
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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #13 on: December 15, 2013, 10:22:40 PM »

A couple of thoughts:

*  We have been talking about heavy-traffic routes that have been excluded from either the 27,000-mile or 41,000-mile proposed networks.  Which, if any, of these omissions carry heavy freight traffic?

Easy enough to determine with sources published by many (most?) state DOT's.  Truck traffic is usually a pretty decent surrogate for freight traffic.  Some well-known roads that exclude trucks should presumably be automatically excluded from the network, such as: part of I-35E in Minnesota; I-66 inside the Capital Beltway; Ca. 110 north of downtown L.A.; Garden State Parkway north of Exit 105; and the New York State (and City) Parkways.

*  Is "need to spend" an implicit criterion?  In other words, might some routes (perhaps even carrying heavy freight traffic) be excluded on the basis that they have enough capacity to handle existing and projected volumes without bottlenecking?  (This might account for the omission of Nebraska/Colorado I-76.)

My understanding of the stated need for this network is to develop added/enhanced performance metrics for this network (as compared to other sections of Interstates). 
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J N Winkler

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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #14 on: December 16, 2013, 12:59:12 AM »

*  We have been talking about heavy-traffic routes that have been excluded from either the 27,000-mile or 41,000-mile proposed networks.  Which, if any, of these omissions carry heavy freight traffic?

The New Jersey Turnpike?

It is included north of the Pennsylvania Turnpike connector; south of it I-295 (the logical shunpike route) is included.  It's been a while since I was on the NJ Turnpike, but I don't recall it having heavy truck volumes south of I-276.

The I-29/Nebraska 2 corridor ought to be part of the network more so than I-70 across Kansas and eastern Colorado.

I'm not sure I agree.  First, I don't recall SR 2 in Nebraska handling particularly heavy truck volumes.  Second, part of the stated purpose of these networks is targeting freight debottlenecking initiatives, and any improvements in the SR 2 corridor are primarily of benefit to Kansas City outbound traffic cutting the corner to Lincoln, which is a regional movement, while I-70 between Denver and Kansas City serves interregional movements.

The maps use orange lines to indicate segments that are part of the 41,000-mile network but not the 27,000-mile network (the smaller network being a proper subset of the larger).  With the exception of a short length of I-135 within Sedgwick County, I-35 between the Missouri state line and the intermodal center near Gardner, and three disjoint lengths of I-70 between the state line and the west side of Topeka, all of the proposed network extent in Kansas is orange, while I-80 in Nebraska is purple all the way to I-76.  Based on their relative truck volumes, it seems to me reasonable that I-80 in Nebraska gets the purple while most of I-70 in Kansas doesn't.  (I don't know on what basis the three disjoint lengths of I-70 in Kansas were purpled.  Topeka used to have the AT&SF business offices and may still have opportunities for road/rail transfer, and I-70 in Kansas City, Kansas runs just north of the Argentine rail classification yard, but I don't understand why Lecompton would be purpled.  It might have a truck terminal, but if that is so, then why isn't the length of I-70 near Junction City--which has large warehouses at the I-70/US 77 interchange--also purpled?)

Quote
And how can I-335 in Kansas be on the network?  (Yeah, I know - less mileage than using I-35)

It is orange mileage only and I think it gets there because of terminal facilities in the vicinity of Topeka and Lawrence, plus whatever there is in Lecompton that justifies purpling.  Between Emporia (Exit 127) and the I-35/I-70 interchange in downtown Kansas City, the Turnpike route is actually a few miles longer.

I haven't studied the rulemaking notices to determine what specific criteria have been developed for determining the networks.  Presumably some measure of prospective overburden by trucks (or freight-related movements generally) is involved if these networks are being developed to guide freight debottlenecking initiatives.  If this is the case, then it is surprising that some lightly trafficked lengths of freeway (like Kansas I-335) are included--I would expect there to be others not making the cut that do serve interregional freight movements or serve as terminal accesses and are heavily enough used, and cheap enough to improve, to take higher priority for investment.
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NE2

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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #15 on: December 16, 2013, 01:46:34 AM »

*  We have been talking about heavy-traffic routes that have been excluded from either the 27,000-mile or 41,000-mile proposed networks.  Which, if any, of these omissions carry heavy freight traffic?
The New Jersey Turnpike?
It is included north of the Pennsylvania Turnpike connector; south of it I-295 (the logical shunpike route) is included.  It's been a while since I was on the NJ Turnpike, but I don't recall it having heavy truck volumes south of I-276.
And how do trucks get from I-276 to I-295? Note that none of I-195 is included.

According to the 2007 FAF data, AADTT on the Turnpike south of exit 6 is about 6-7K; I-295 has only slightly more with 8-9K. North of exit 6 is closer to 20K (but the data's a little wonky). I-276 has 7-8K, jumping to 11K west of US 1.

The trouble lies in the long-distance FAF model, which completely cocks up the Turnpike (I believe the DHPFN was based on this). Take a peep, it's in a sheep:


(This same data is the source for the image in the first post of this thread, but it's impossible to see the Turnpike. Strangely I-335 has less long-distance traffic than I-35 there, but they included the former in the DHFPN.)
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NE2

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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #16 on: December 19, 2013, 06:08:17 PM »

It's indeed possible to get it down to 27K if you're willing to make some major cuts:


In before "you forgot Kansas"...
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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #17 on: December 19, 2013, 07:08:33 PM »

I don't know if there's an appreciable difference in truck traffic between I-81 south of Syracuse and I-81 north of Syracuse.  You could easily add that and still be under 27k.
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NE2

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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #18 on: December 19, 2013, 08:27:45 PM »

I don't know if there's an appreciable difference in truck traffic between I-81 south of Syracuse and I-81 north of Syracuse.  You could easily add that and still be under 27k.
I kept south of Syracuse because NYC-Toronto should be included (yes, I know I-390 is slightly shorter, but probably hillier). I could add I-81 north of Syracuse back in, but if I did that for every short piece I removed I'd soon be way over 27K.

And yes, removing MSP-Winnipeg and Boston-Calais would give a fair amount more room, but I wanted to at least pay lip service to the international border criterion.
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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #19 on: January 02, 2014, 03:31:38 PM »

Anyone know where the missing comments are? http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=FHWA-2013-0050 says 37 received, but only 30 appear below. It's been like that for about a week. Thanks, Obama.
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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #20 on: January 02, 2014, 05:06:33 PM »

It's indeed possible to get it down to 27K if you're willing to make some major cuts:
The Florida Turnpike's inclusion seems superfluous. I-15 north of I-40 seems to serve little strategic purpose, especially given the omission below.

A cut too far is a route from Texas to the NE. You'd only need to add OKC - Denver. Truck traffic is rather high on that route compared to I-76 (west), I-15 (north of I-40) and many of the smaller links like Louisville - I-75.

However, it's far better than the hodgepodge of routes that makes up the real 27k system!
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NE2

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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #21 on: January 02, 2014, 05:18:30 PM »

The Florida Turnpike's inclusion seems superfluous.
How else would you go to Miami? US 27 has become sprawl-choked.

I-15 north of I-40 seems to serve little strategic purpose, especially given the omission below.
Maybe, but it seems to connect Socal to a bunch of the Midwest (assuming the 45 mile increase over I-70 is worth avoiding I-70's grades).

A cut too far is a route from Texas to the NE. You'd only need to add OKC - Denver.
Which is rather long. Getting it down to 27K is like playing whack-a-mole.
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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #22 on: January 02, 2014, 05:46:33 PM »

The Florida Turnpike's inclusion seems superfluous.
How else would you go to Miami? US 27 has become sprawl-choked.
I-10 then I-95? Not much longer than the Turnpike: 689mi vs 662mi. You are happy with these sorts of doglegs elsewhere (eg anywhere S of Denver to Denver).
Quote
Maybe, but it seems to connect Socal to a bunch of the Midwest (assuming the 45 mile increase over I-70 is worth avoiding I-70's grades).
I didn't realise how much further the US66 route is over the via Denver routes.
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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #23 on: January 02, 2014, 09:38:28 PM »

It's also perhaps more important to include major non-Interstates, since the "national freight network" is the PFN plus all other Interstates. Not that I realized this until after making the map.

As for the Turnpike specifically, the main reason I kept it in is that at 160 miles it was too minor of a mole to whack.
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Re: Draft Highway Primary Freight Network
« Reply #24 on: January 10, 2014, 08:14:54 PM »

Anyone know where the missing comments are? http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=FHWA-2013-0050 says 37 received, but only 30 appear below. It's been like that for about a week. Thanks, Obama.
Hey, they're all there now. In particular, this is part of what I wrote:
Quote
But also note that the "national freight network" comprises the PFN, all other Interstates, and the "critical rural freight corridors". The only mention of the PFN, as opposed to the NFN, outside the definition of the PFN, is that eligible projects may include BUT ARE NOT LIMITED TO "efforts to reduce the environmental impacts of freight movement on the primary freight network". So is there any benefit to putting an Interstate on the PFN? Or should the PFN be drawn to use as little Interstate mileage as possible in order to include more non-Interstate mileage?
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