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Author Topic: HOV Lanes, Are You For Them or Against?  (Read 24921 times)

Tomahawkin

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HOV Lanes, Are You For Them or Against?
« on: February 14, 2009, 08:22:47 PM »

In Some areas they are efficient in others they are not...I find them useful in the Atlanta area, during peak traffic times, especially on the Connector and the NE expressway (I-85 North)...

What are everyone's HOV's experiences...?

The one's on 95 in S. Florida are useful as well

And I just found out they Allow single passenger cars in the HOV lanes in the Atlanta Area as long as they are AFV (Alt. Fuel Vehicles) Approved...This has probably started taking on elsewhere (Houston, Dallas, LA, Denver, etc)

Thoughts?
« Last Edit: March 12, 2009, 09:38:45 PM by un1 »
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DrZoidberg

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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #1 on: February 14, 2009, 08:26:35 PM »

It depends.  In Portland, there is an HOV lane that runs from north Portland to Vancouver, WA.  It's only seperated by double white lines, so it's not too effective in that numerous people "cheat".

Other cities, like LA our Houston, that have their HOVs blocked off, where you can only enter and exit and certain points, seem much more effective...and income generating as you have cops waiting at the end of an HOV getting those who are riding solo.  :-P
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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #2 on: February 14, 2009, 08:28:03 PM »

I think HOVs need to have full access into general purpose lanes even if that facilitates cheating- but overall I'm for them DURING PEAK TIMES

At 2 in the morning I get ticked off when I can't rally down the HOV lane

Tomahawkin

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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #3 on: February 14, 2009, 08:40:33 PM »

They tried doing the double lines in Atlanta, but people cheat all the time, especially during peak hours. The olny way to keep people from cheating is using the Jersey (concrete) barriers...
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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #4 on: February 14, 2009, 08:53:43 PM »

I adore the HOV lanes on I-64 in Norfolk...  :love: There are entrances/exits at I-564/Granby St., I-264, and some point south of that (they're extending them...). Whenever I need to go to Virginia Beach, I just exit into the HOV lanes at 564, and zip down to 264, which even has dedicated HOV exit ramps. The HOV lanes have a speed limit of 60 as opposed to the regular lanes' speed of 55, and there is almost always traffic in the regular lanes but not HOV lanes. Those have saved me so much time... On the contrary, however, the HOV lanes on I-64 here in Hampton and Newport News, which run from US-258 (Mercury Blvd.) to VA-143 (Jefferson Ave.), are completely and totally pointless. Only running for a few miles on the inside of an 8-lane freeway, by the time you cross all of those lanes to get to them, your exit's coming up, so you need to get back across them all. They're also only separated by a double dashed line, so only long-distance travelers who tend to stick to the left anyway use them...

And I believe in Virginia (at least according to my driver's ed teacher I had) you are allowed to drive in an HOV lane with only 1 passenger if you drive a Low Emissions Vehicle or Alternate Fuel Vehicle or hybrid.

V'Ger

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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #5 on: February 14, 2009, 09:17:31 PM »

They're definitely nice on the weekends on 101. Seems like a lot of the time people ignore them even when they can use them.
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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #6 on: February 14, 2009, 09:23:49 PM »

In Some areas they are efficient in others they are not...I find them useful in the Atlanta area, during peak traffic times, especially on the Connector and the NE expressway (I-85 North)...

The only thing about the HOV lanes is, if you want to exit, you have to fight your way over to the right to exit. There are two HOV-2 exits I-75/85 northbound (Memorial Drive & Piedmont Avenue). There's only one southbound on I-75/85 (Williams Street), if memory serves. They're better served for longer trips.

They tried doing the double lines in Atlanta, but people cheat all the time, especially during peak hours. The olny way to keep people from cheating is using the Jersey (concrete) barriers...

Yeah, I agree, the double white lines don't mean anything to some.


Be well,

Bryant
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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #7 on: February 14, 2009, 10:11:50 PM »

HOV's are the way to go in Los Angeles. However with that stated, I'm for them if they are an addition to the general travel lanes. I am against them if they are a restriping or a reconfiguration, ala Interstate 95 in South Florida.

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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #8 on: February 14, 2009, 11:20:06 PM »

According to MTO, one HOV lane has the ability to carry as much traffic as 4 general purpose lanes.

For that, and environmental and congestional reasons, I'm for them.  Besides, they are great when there isn't enough room to widen a highway too much.
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deathtopumpkins

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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #9 on: February 15, 2009, 12:04:09 AM »

Do they actually say HOW, Hal? That doesn't make sense to me...

FreewayDan

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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #10 on: February 15, 2009, 12:34:01 AM »

A couple of HOV lanes in Orange County (SR 22 and SR 55) have continuous access, meaning you can use and leave the HOV lane whenever you please.
« Last Edit: February 15, 2009, 12:36:05 AM by FreewayDan »
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Marc

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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #11 on: February 15, 2009, 12:57:46 AM »

I have mixed emotions about HOV lanes.

In cities the size of Houston, Atlanta, or L.A. I totally get it and they should install HOV lanes. However, there is an example of how HOV's are installed without good intentions. When widening a freeway, a lot of cities will install HOV's just to get the extra federal funding for the project (HOVs promote carpooling, which leads to less carbon emissions; therefore, the federal government promotes the installation of HOVs with incentives). I guarantee this is why Memphis installed HOV lanes in the 1990s when they widened I-40 on the east side. Memphis does not have the population or the traffic congestion for them to justify installing HOV lanes. As a matter of fact, a few years ago, I heard they stopped enforcing the HOV lane on I-40. Signs are still there as of early last month when I was last there, but they haven't enforced HOV rules in years.

But overall I do agree with HOV lanes, the city just has to have the population to justify them.
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mightyace

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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #12 on: February 15, 2009, 01:46:35 AM »

Well Nashville is about the same as Memphis on HOV lanes except that I don't think they were ever enforced that well to begin with.

In any case, the HOV lanes are just the leftmost lane of the freeways (I's 24, 40 and 65).  They are only active from 7-9am one way inbound and 4-6pm one way outbound.

I agree with KatyFreeway that they make sense only when the traffic is heavy enough.  Here, they seem to increase traffic congestion when people obey them.
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Revive 755

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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #13 on: February 15, 2009, 02:14:14 AM »

Plain HOV, maybe.  I'd prefer HOT (High Occupancy Toll) lanes, preferably equipped to handle EZpass, so if I find myself traveling alone and running late, I can pay to use them.  Of course, all HOV lanes are really HOT lanes, just with a different method of payment.
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Chris

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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #14 on: February 15, 2009, 08:24:54 AM »

As for taking a regular lane and converting it to a HOV lane, I'm against that, but an additional lane immediatly adjacent to the regular lanes are okay. Separating it with barriers is a waste of space, you can almost fit two regular lanes there.

There was a test with them in the Netherlands during the late 1990's, but it failed and they've turned it into a tidal lane. I don't remember other places in Europe with HOV lanes, but then again, in most European states, the amount of commuting traffic is relatively low compared to US cities, and traffic volumes are also lower. For instance, there are only a few spots in Germany which have volumes over 150 k.

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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #15 on: February 15, 2009, 08:29:05 AM »

Katy/Ace:  another reason to consider why TDOT went with HOV lanes in Memphis and Nashville is thus:  Federal Interstate Maintenance (IM) funds *CANNOT* be used for normal Interstate widening, but they CAN be used for auxiliary lanes and HOV lanes.

Could these funds have been used for the currently unused HOV bridges on I-95 in Nova after the end of the HOV lanes in Dumfries for the possible extension of the HOV lanes as far south as VA 3 in Fredericksburg? By the way, the HOV lanes north of VA 234 are extremely useful in the mornings, however, going south in the afternoon works until the HOV lanes end just past VA 234.
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SSOWorld

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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #16 on: February 15, 2009, 09:34:56 AM »

welcome to the world of politics :crazy:
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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #17 on: February 15, 2009, 01:30:29 PM »

According to MTO, one HOV lane has the ability to carry as much traffic as 4 general purpose lanes.

For that, and environmental and congestional reasons, I'm for them.  Besides, they are great when there isn't enough room to widen a highway too much.

Do they actually say HOW, Hal? That doesn't make sense to me...

Yes indeed. I can dig it up for you:

"HOV lanes are a critical part of the Province’s transportation strategy because of their ability to increase the efficiency of Ontario’s transportation system. HOV lanes have proven to be a successful strategy in many North American cities for moving more people and increasing the efficiency of the transportation network. An HOV lane has the ability to move as many people as four general-purpose lanes."

Link to source:
http://www.mto.gov.on.ca/english/traveller/hov/plan2007.htm

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Chris

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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #18 on: February 15, 2009, 01:36:18 PM »

Quote
An HOV lane has the ability to move as many people as four general-purpose lanes."

That sentence is a bit biased. Yes, it could be possible if all the cars on it would carry 4.8 people on average, but I don't think that's the reality.

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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #19 on: February 15, 2009, 04:43:34 PM »

I have yet to drive on the only HOV lanes in Pennsylvania, and they've been around since the first Bush administration.  I do like that they are separate from the mainline 279 lanes since they are just another Port Authority busway, which removes buses from the regular lanes, but allows private vehicles.
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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #20 on: February 15, 2009, 04:59:38 PM »

There were HOV lanes in New Jersey at one time on I-80 and I-287.  They were proposed in order to justify the widening done along the two corridors.  As it ends up, the I-80 lane was marginally successful and the I-287 lane bombed, so both were removed in the late 1990s.  (I was involved in some of the studies.)  Too many cheaters, and the lanes looked empty.  The public felt like since their tax dollars paid for the construction, they had the right to use the lanes.  I suppose the governor finally caved in.

Personally, I am for HOV and HOT lanes.  I think HOT lanes would have helped the situation in central New Jersey.
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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #21 on: February 15, 2009, 08:47:03 PM »

Conversion of existing HOV lanes into HOT lanes is being studied in the San Francisco Bay Area.  However, many opponents to HOT lanes have labeled them as "Lexus Lanes," because they feel that only the rich will be able to use them on a regular basis.
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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #22 on: February 15, 2009, 09:37:07 PM »

As for taking a regular lane and converting it to a HOV lane, I'm against that, but an additional lane immediatly adjacent to the regular lanes are okay. Separating it with barriers is a waste of space, you can almost fit two regular lanes there.

Yes and no.  Yes, I don't like reducing capacity to turn it into an HOV lane.  In NJ that actually failed on I-287 and I-80, because the same amount of traffic was suddenly crammed into one less lane, and the HOV lane was rescinded.  Guess what?  When you're commuting from on suburb to another, it's not easy to carpool.  And no, I disagree with your separation quote.  If you don't separate the lane enough, it becomes far too easy to violate, and you increase the chance of sideswipe accidents because one lane is moving much faster than the others.  Now, on the other hand, when you do what Connecticut did and provide 18 feet between HOV and regular lanes, that's wasted pavement.

I used to be against the NJ Turnpike having separated Car and General lanes from 8A to 14 (soon to be 6 to 14), until I learned the Turnpike's philosophy.  If there's an incident, they want to be able to route traffic onto the other roadway, or manage traffic between roadways, to keep things flowing as well as possible.  I always figured 7 lanes would be better than 3 and 3, but in this era we have to think disaster, and the NJ Turnpike has its own emergency bypass built in.

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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #23 on: February 15, 2009, 11:39:56 PM »

Quote
An HOV lane has the ability to move as many people as four general-purpose lanes."

That sentence is a bit biased. Yes, it could be possible if all the cars on it would carry 4.8 people on average, but I don't think that's the reality.

Exactly what I was thinking... no one here even pays attention to the 2+ rule, and even if they did, who is actually able to commute with 4 or more people in the same car!? It just doesn't work! So if they only carried 2 people on average, it would only move as many people as less than 2 general-purpose lanes. Plus fewer cars are using them. So you have 2 people per car but half as many cars using the HOV lanes, equating to about the same amount of traffic moved for a whole lot more trouble.

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Re: HOV Lanes, R u them or against them?
« Reply #24 on: February 16, 2009, 01:07:36 AM »

Conversion of existing HOV lanes into HOT lanes is being studied in the San Francisco Bay Area.  However, many opponents to HOT lanes have labeled them as "Lexus Lanes," because they feel that only the rich will be able to use them on a regular basis.

This is what will be done on I-10 (Katy Freeway) west of Houston. Since the widening project finished, they've had the lanes setup as HOV lanes, but the permanent signage designating it as the "Katy Tollway" can be seen flipped over on the opposite side of overheard gantries. I believe the temporary HOV lanes were setup as a trial period to see how much traffic would travel on them. Honestly, I can say that they're pretty empty. Even during peak hours.
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