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Author Topic: VDOT "A Tale of 2 Tunnels" describes VA Beach alternate  (Read 2568 times)

HighwayMaster

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VDOT "A Tale of 2 Tunnels" describes VA Beach alternate
« on: April 13, 2012, 04:57:08 PM »

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Beltway

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Re: VDOT "A Tale of 2 Tunnels" describes VA Beach alternate
« Reply #1 on: April 13, 2012, 05:40:34 PM »

Why do they call it "Monitor-Merrimac"?

The ironclads in the battle were the USS Monitor and the CSS Virginia, and the CSS Virginia was built only a few miles from there.
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Scott M. Savage
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1995hoo

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Re: VDOT "A Tale of 2 Tunnels" describes VA Beach alternate
« Reply #2 on: April 13, 2012, 05:48:39 PM »

Why do they call it "Monitor-Merrimac"?

The ironclads in the battle were the USS Monitor and the CSS Virginia, and the CSS Virginia was built only a few miles from there.

It's always been referred to that way here. Growing up in Virginia we learned about "the Merrimac and the Monitor" in school (always listed in that order). I believe the CSS Virginia was built using the hull of the USS Merrimac (or Merrimack according to some sources), so it's not 100% inaccurate, and I don't doubt that they want to avoid any potential ambiguity that might occur from using the word "Virginia" in the name ("Virginia–Monitor Bridge Tunnel" or "Monitor–Virginia Bridge Tunnel" might be confusing to some people).

I believe federal funds were used as part of the construction, so perhaps there was some federal objection to using the Confederate name? Wouldn't surprise me. We have a lot of roads and schools and other things named for Confederate generals and the like (Robert E. Lee High School is near my house; Mosby Woods Elementary; Lee–Jackson Memorial Highway; Jefferson Davis Highway; etc.), but a lot of those have been around a lot longer than the MMMBT, which is relatively new (1992).
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HighwayMaster

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Re: VDOT "A Tale of 2 Tunnels" describes VA Beach alternate
« Reply #3 on: April 13, 2012, 07:55:12 PM »

There's only 2 M's.

According to VDOT, the alternate route involves using I-264 through downtown Norfolk. Why not use I-64 over the High Rise instead?

Edit: Sorry, 1995hoo. There are 3 M's, I forgot 'Memorial' is in the name.
« Last Edit: April 13, 2012, 08:46:50 PM by HighwayMaster »
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Takumi

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Re: VDOT "A Tale of 2 Tunnels" describes VA Beach alternate
« Reply #4 on: April 13, 2012, 08:41:36 PM »

The 3rd M stands for Memorial.
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HighwayMaster

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Re: VDOT "A Tale of 2 Tunnels" describes VA Beach alternate
« Reply #5 on: April 13, 2012, 08:47:16 PM »

The 3rd M stands for Memorial.

I just realized that a minute ago. Me>:banghead:
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Beltway

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Re: VDOT "A Tale of 2 Tunnels" describes VA Beach alternate
« Reply #6 on: April 13, 2012, 10:10:04 PM »

The USS Merrimac was set afire, burned to the waterline, and basically scuttled by retreating Union troops, so it was essentially destroyed.  It was a sailing ship with steam engines.  The ironclad was a very different ship built on top of the lower hull of the former ship.

The Commonwealth Transportation Board officially approved the name for the bridge-tunnel, and the federal government had no say over the matter.  This happened several months before opening in 1992.

Actually before that, it had an already tenatively approved name, the James River Bridge-Tunnel.

The new name was to commemerate the battle that was fought a mile from the site.

I still maintain that "Monitor-Merrimac" is historically inaccurate. :-)
« Last Edit: April 13, 2012, 10:15:03 PM by Beltway »
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