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Author Topic: Massachusetts  (Read 223183 times)

RobbieL2415

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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1175 on: May 25, 2019, 03:16:41 PM »

-Decommission MA 25 and make it I-495 instead.  Having a primary SR number on a short freeway makes no sense.

Perhaps MassDOT should take a page from the NYSDOT playbook and renumber MA 25 as MA 495.  The only reason MA 25 exists is that it was the original number for I-495 south of I-95 in Mansfield.  Not often that a child route intersects with and then continues past its parent (not counting the new I-95/I-295 crossing in NJ).  I-476 and I-390 are a couple others, and then there's the rare duplex with the parent a la I-287 (which was planned when I-87 followed I-684 then I-84 to Newburgh instead of the Thruway),
Why would you do that when the highway is built to Interstate standards?
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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1176 on: May 25, 2019, 04:15:48 PM »

For ease of exit numbering, if they do not ever go mileage-based and the existing numbers stay, making 25 become part of 195 would be an alternative that would make sense because the numbers would count upward on the extension instead of having to renumber everything on the existing 495.  On the other hand, if Mass goes mileage-based, extending 495 to the Canal would be an ideal time to renumber and extend all at once, but FHWA wanting Interstates to end at other Interstates probably would not allow either to be extended anyway.
I like this idea.  It would still end at a US route and one of the bridges to Cape Cod, so I would think it would be a logical exception.
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Please note: All comments here represent my own personal opinion and do not reflect the official position of NYSDOT or its affiliates.

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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1177 on: May 27, 2019, 04:36:34 PM »

One of three button copy BGS that are related to the Mass Pike.  All pics taken within the last month or so.



The others:



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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1178 on: May 28, 2019, 11:39:25 PM »

Other than the couple other entrance signs around Boston, that might be it. I know the CT-style 33 is gone.

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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1179 on: May 29, 2019, 01:20:17 PM »





I know exactly where this one is, and I thought it was endangered when I still lived in that area thirteen years ago. I think the only thing that's saving it is that it's on a town maintained road, not a state maintained road. AFAIK it's the last one of this style left in the state once the one in Lee was taken down for the AET project.

The ones on the I-91-US 5 connector ramps in Holyoke are doomed, though, pretty sure they're on deck to be replaced soon.
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Beeper1

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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1180 on: May 29, 2019, 07:32:53 PM »

Other than the couple other entrance signs around Boston, that might be it. I know the CT-style 33 is gone.

It's actually still there.  The world's longest ongoing sign replacement contract is not complete and must be saving this one for last.  I was through there earlier this week and the westbound assembly with the button copy signs for MA-33 and I-291 is still in place.  A new gantry has been installed just a few feet behind the old one last fall, but the new signs were never attached and are still MIA.
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Alps

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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1181 on: May 29, 2019, 11:46:56 PM »

Other than the couple other entrance signs around Boston, that might be it. I know the CT-style 33 is gone.

It's actually still there.  The world's longest ongoing sign replacement contract is not complete and must be saving this one for last.  I was through there earlier this week and the westbound assembly with the button copy signs for MA-33 and I-291 is still in place.  A new gantry has been installed just a few feet behind the old one last fall, but the new signs were never attached and are still MIA.

That's funny because someone told me they saw it being taken down. They must have seen the new sign go up and assumed.

Pete from Boston

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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1182 on: May 30, 2019, 09:34:46 AM »

As of this morning, the former HOV lane on I-93 southbound through Somerville and Charlestown is no more.  It's now an express lane, bypassing the Sullivan Square and Storrow Drive exits and open to all traffic.  The reflectorized barriers (which took a severe beating every winter) between the HOV and regular lanes were taken down last week on the portion of 93 before the "lower deck."  They're still up from the police pull-out to the beginning of the concrete median ahead of the Zakim Bridge.
This is only for the duration of the Tobin Bridge/Chelsea Curves reconstruction project, from the MassDOT blog post linked above:
"In order to accommodate travelers during this necessary construction work, MassDOT is opening the I-93 southbound carpool lane between Medford and the Zakim Bridge to all vehicles regardless of the number of occupants. This lane will continue to function as an “express lane” and vehicles in this lane on I-93 southbound will not have access to Exit 28 (Mystic Avenue) or Exit 26 (Storrow Drive)."

I wish they would leave it to what they changed it to permanently. Maybe they will if they get feedback that it should stay.

An express lane bypassing the traffic due to the 2 exits is much more valuable than an HOV lane. Many people can't use the HOV lane anyways since a lot of traffic exits at those 2 exits. However, a single occupant vehicle has to sit in that traffic instead of bypassing it. Maybe they'll figure out that this is a net benefit, or better yet nuke the whole lane and possibly squeeze another lane into the already existing deck.

Having navigated the new express lane for three days now:  Traffic is flowing LOTS better, even in the non-express lanes, judging by the average speed of traffic and confirmed using the GoTime signs.  With the HOV restrictions in place, travel time from the beginning of the HOV lane to the Zakim Bridge (three miles) was typically 9 minutes at the time I'm there every work day, between 6:30 and 6:45AM.  Now, with the express lane, it's typically 6 minutes.  The traffic volume does not appear to have changed, but the addition of the express lane has considerably improved the traffic flow.

The suggestion to make this arrangement permanent has merit, IMO.

I only need to drive into Boston about once a week, but I agree about the immediate improvement. I have even started skipping the Leverett Connector and going downtown and turning around to get to Storrow.

But I wonder if it is sustainable. Lots of people are still using the relatively slower left lane of 93, leading me to believe they don’t know the express lane is open for all vehicles. I suspect once time passes and word gets out it will begin to fill up more.
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mrsman

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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1183 on: May 30, 2019, 11:55:54 AM »

As of this morning, the former HOV lane on I-93 southbound through Somerville and Charlestown is no more.  It's now an express lane, bypassing the Sullivan Square and Storrow Drive exits and open to all traffic.  The reflectorized barriers (which took a severe beating every winter) between the HOV and regular lanes were taken down last week on the portion of 93 before the "lower deck."  They're still up from the police pull-out to the beginning of the concrete median ahead of the Zakim Bridge.
This is only for the duration of the Tobin Bridge/Chelsea Curves reconstruction project, from the MassDOT blog post linked above:
"In order to accommodate travelers during this necessary construction work, MassDOT is opening the I-93 southbound carpool lane between Medford and the Zakim Bridge to all vehicles regardless of the number of occupants. This lane will continue to function as an “express lane” and vehicles in this lane on I-93 southbound will not have access to Exit 28 (Mystic Avenue) or Exit 26 (Storrow Drive)."

I wish they would leave it to what they changed it to permanently. Maybe they will if they get feedback that it should stay.

An express lane bypassing the traffic due to the 2 exits is much more valuable than an HOV lane. Many people can't use the HOV lane anyways since a lot of traffic exits at those 2 exits. However, a single occupant vehicle has to sit in that traffic instead of bypassing it. Maybe they'll figure out that this is a net benefit, or better yet nuke the whole lane and possibly squeeze another lane into the already existing deck.

Having navigated the new express lane for three days now:  Traffic is flowing LOTS better, even in the non-express lanes, judging by the average speed of traffic and confirmed using the GoTime signs.  With the HOV restrictions in place, travel time from the beginning of the HOV lane to the Zakim Bridge (three miles) was typically 9 minutes at the time I'm there every work day, between 6:30 and 6:45AM.  Now, with the express lane, it's typically 6 minutes.  The traffic volume does not appear to have changed, but the addition of the express lane has considerably improved the traffic flow.

The suggestion to make this arrangement permanent has merit, IMO.

I only need to drive into Boston about once a week, but I agree about the immediate improvement. I have even started skipping the Leverett Connector and going downtown and turning around to get to Storrow.

But I wonder if it is sustainable. Lots of people are still using the relatively slower left lane of 93, leading me to believe they don’t know the express lane is open for all vehicles. I suspect once time passes and word gets out it will begin to fill up more.

Generally speaking, converting an HOV lane to general traffic improves the flow for all users.  The only question is whether giving everybody a small benefit is better than giving the preferred user (i.e. HOVs) a huge benefit.  The thinking is that if you encourage more people to carpool, there will be less overall cars.  However, I am not sure that HOV is working as it was intended in the Boston area.
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Pete from Boston

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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1184 on: May 30, 2019, 05:10:18 PM »

As of this morning, the former HOV lane on I-93 southbound through Somerville and Charlestown is no more.  It's now an express lane, bypassing the Sullivan Square and Storrow Drive exits and open to all traffic.  The reflectorized barriers (which took a severe beating every winter) between the HOV and regular lanes were taken down last week on the portion of 93 before the "lower deck."  They're still up from the police pull-out to the beginning of the concrete median ahead of the Zakim Bridge.
This is only for the duration of the Tobin Bridge/Chelsea Curves reconstruction project, from the MassDOT blog post linked above:
"In order to accommodate travelers during this necessary construction work, MassDOT is opening the I-93 southbound carpool lane between Medford and the Zakim Bridge to all vehicles regardless of the number of occupants. This lane will continue to function as an “express lane” and vehicles in this lane on I-93 southbound will not have access to Exit 28 (Mystic Avenue) or Exit 26 (Storrow Drive)."

I wish they would leave it to what they changed it to permanently. Maybe they will if they get feedback that it should stay.

An express lane bypassing the traffic due to the 2 exits is much more valuable than an HOV lane. Many people can't use the HOV lane anyways since a lot of traffic exits at those 2 exits. However, a single occupant vehicle has to sit in that traffic instead of bypassing it. Maybe they'll figure out that this is a net benefit, or better yet nuke the whole lane and possibly squeeze another lane into the already existing deck.

Having navigated the new express lane for three days now:  Traffic is flowing LOTS better, even in the non-express lanes, judging by the average speed of traffic and confirmed using the GoTime signs.  With the HOV restrictions in place, travel time from the beginning of the HOV lane to the Zakim Bridge (three miles) was typically 9 minutes at the time I'm there every work day, between 6:30 and 6:45AM.  Now, with the express lane, it's typically 6 minutes.  The traffic volume does not appear to have changed, but the addition of the express lane has considerably improved the traffic flow.

The suggestion to make this arrangement permanent has merit, IMO.

I only need to drive into Boston about once a week, but I agree about the immediate improvement. I have even started skipping the Leverett Connector and going downtown and turning around to get to Storrow.

But I wonder if it is sustainable. Lots of people are still using the relatively slower left lane of 93, leading me to believe they don’t know the express lane is open for all vehicles. I suspect once time passes and word gets out it will begin to fill up more.

Generally speaking, converting an HOV lane to general traffic improves the flow for all users.  The only question is whether giving everybody a small benefit is better than giving the preferred user (i.e. HOVs) a huge benefit.  The thinking is that if you encourage more people to carpool, there will be less overall cars.  However, I am not sure that HOV is working as it was intended in the Boston area.

The complaints I read online are from express bus users.  It’ll be interesting to see how those are affected in the long run. But right now, they’re probably getting into the city pretty well.
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Pete from Boston

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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1185 on: June 04, 2019, 10:43:09 AM »

As of this morning, the former HOV lane on I-93 southbound through Somerville and Charlestown is no more.  It's now an express lane, bypassing the Sullivan Square and Storrow Drive exits and open to all traffic.  The reflectorized barriers (which took a severe beating every winter) between the HOV and regular lanes were taken down last week on the portion of 93 before the "lower deck."  They're still up from the police pull-out to the beginning of the concrete median ahead of the Zakim Bridge.
This is only for the duration of the Tobin Bridge/Chelsea Curves reconstruction project, from the MassDOT blog post linked above:
"In order to accommodate travelers during this necessary construction work, MassDOT is opening the I-93 southbound carpool lane between Medford and the Zakim Bridge to all vehicles regardless of the number of occupants. This lane will continue to function as an “express lane” and vehicles in this lane on I-93 southbound will not have access to Exit 28 (Mystic Avenue) or Exit 26 (Storrow Drive)."

I wish they would leave it to what they changed it to permanently. Maybe they will if they get feedback that it should stay.

An express lane bypassing the traffic due to the 2 exits is much more valuable than an HOV lane. Many people can't use the HOV lane anyways since a lot of traffic exits at those 2 exits. However, a single occupant vehicle has to sit in that traffic instead of bypassing it. Maybe they'll figure out that this is a net benefit, or better yet nuke the whole lane and possibly squeeze another lane into the already existing deck.

Having navigated the new express lane for three days now:  Traffic is flowing LOTS better, even in the non-express lanes, judging by the average speed of traffic and confirmed using the GoTime signs.  With the HOV restrictions in place, travel time from the beginning of the HOV lane to the Zakim Bridge (three miles) was typically 9 minutes at the time I'm there every work day, between 6:30 and 6:45AM.  Now, with the express lane, it's typically 6 minutes.  The traffic volume does not appear to have changed, but the addition of the express lane has considerably improved the traffic flow.

The suggestion to make this arrangement permanent has merit, IMO.

I only need to drive into Boston about once a week, but I agree about the immediate improvement. I have even started skipping the Leverett Connector and going downtown and turning around to get to Storrow.

But I wonder if it is sustainable. Lots of people are still using the relatively slower left lane of 93, leading me to believe they don’t know the express lane is open for all vehicles. I suspect once time passes and word gets out it will begin to fill up more.

Generally speaking, converting an HOV lane to general traffic improves the flow for all users.  The only question is whether giving everybody a small benefit is better than giving the preferred user (i.e. HOVs) a huge benefit.  The thinking is that if you encourage more people to carpool, there will be less overall cars.  However, I am not sure that HOV is working as it was intended in the Boston area.

Another thing that occurred to me is that it’s quite possible these lanes are written into law as part of the state’s implementation plan under the Clean Air Act. If that’s the case, a permanent removal would require study and EPA approval.
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roadman

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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1186 on: June 04, 2019, 11:07:46 AM »

Another thing that occurred to me is that it’s quite possible these lanes are written into law as part of the state’s implementation plan under the Clean Air Act. If that’s the case, a permanent removal would require study and EPA approval.

You would be correct.  Back when the Zakim Bridge was first opened to traffic, MassHighway had to relocate the entrance to the lane to just south of Mystic Avenue.  As the south end of the lane was shortened to account for the Lower Deck to Zakim transition, the north end had to be extended to maintain the total HOV lane length as stipulated in the Clean Air Act agreement.
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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1187 on: June 21, 2019, 11:32:34 AM »

On 495 today, found some new pull-through signs at the 140 exit in Mansfield (exits 11-12). Wasn't able to get a picture, but the signs have only one destination, Cape Cod SB / Marlboro NB
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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1188 on: June 21, 2019, 12:05:42 PM »

On 495 today, found some new pull-through signs at the 140 exit in Mansfield (exits 11-12). Wasn't able to get a picture, but the signs have only one destination, Cape Cod SB / Marlboro NB
I believe somebody on Facebook posted pics of some of those new signs in that area and such indeed confirms those single control points for I-495.
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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1189 on: July 08, 2019, 06:40:16 PM »

Most of the Route 128 signs between Lowell Street and Grant Circle, with the exception of Route 114 to Route 62, were last updated in 2004.
I didn't know that those newer signs were that old.  Such still look in great shape IMHO.

...the signs between Route 114 and Endicott Street will be replaced as part of a separate project to redo the bridge over the Waters River, which will include some minor widening to allow for a third lane between Route 114 and Endicott Street each way.
That widening's a long time coming.  Although such will make cemetery entrance along the northbound lanes very interesting*.

*to be read in Arte Johnson/Wolfgang voice.

Edit to add:

Will this widening also mean that the Endicott St. overpass will be replaced as well?  The openings underneath the current structure don't appear wide enough to accommodate the additional two lanes.

The other option would be to convert the half-cloverleaf into a diamond interchange (is that indeed the plan?).  That way the additional lanes/lead-in ramps between the Endicott St. and MA 114 Westbound won't impact the overpass structure.

That's the ONLY way into the cemetery too. You'd be driving along and "oops, gotta make a funeral pit stop."
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bob7374

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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1190 on: July 30, 2019, 11:56:31 PM »

MassDOT has posted its new 2019 Transportation Map on its website: https://www.mass.gov/files/documents/2019/04/05/State%20Map%202019.pdf

Not very impressed with their US route shields, nor circle shields for state routes. They do have mileage based exit numbers posted, for I-395 in CT, but not for I-295 or RI 4 in RI. The Boston inset could use more route numbers besides those on expressways. Maybe they thought the numbers would be confused with those marking points of interest.

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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1191 on: July 31, 2019, 09:00:18 AM »

MassDOT has posted its new 2019 Transportation Map on its website: https://www.mass.gov/files/documents/2019/04/05/State%20Map%202019.pdf
Where can one get print versions of that map without going into Boston?
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roadman

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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1192 on: July 31, 2019, 09:56:14 AM »

MassDOT has posted its new 2019 Transportation Map on its website: https://www.mass.gov/files/documents/2019/04/05/State%20Map%202019.pdf
Where can one get print versions of that map without going into Boston?

You can request printed copies of the 2019 State Transportation Map here:

https://www.mass.gov/forms/contact-massdot
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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1193 on: July 31, 2019, 10:08:18 AM »

MassDOT has posted its new 2019 Transportation Map on its website: https://www.mass.gov/files/documents/2019/04/05/State%20Map%202019.pdf
Where can one get print versions of that map without going into Boston?

You can request printed copies of the 2019 State Transportation Map here:

https://www.mass.gov/forms/contact-massdot
Thanks.  I just send in my request via that web-link.
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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1194 on: July 31, 2019, 12:34:16 PM »

Can MassDOT and other entities finally finish repainting lines on the Mass Pike and other interstates? Some of the lines have faded out completely. Driving on I-90 through the Berkshires in the rain was difficult enough. Not having any painted lines for guidance - and plenty of broken reflectors made the drive miserable. Even worse - I was behind some paint trucks a month ago on the Pike, but it doesn't appear the project was ever finished. New paint lines come and go almost at random.
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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1195 on: July 31, 2019, 02:38:18 PM »

Some Massachusetts questions from last month, as an outsider:

-Why are US 3's mileposts artificially high? The freeway starts at (roughly) MP 15 but the first milepost is MP 72.4.
-Why are there service plazas on only MA 128 (and I-95)?
-Does Massachusetts post town line changes on freeways? I can tell when the town line changes based on overpasses, but I can't recall if town lines on freeways are signed.
-Where is the "Mass Turnpike Points West" sign? I couldn't find any button copy in the state.
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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1196 on: July 31, 2019, 02:54:43 PM »

Some Massachusetts questions from last month, as an outsider:

-Why are US 3's mileposts artificially high? The freeway starts at (roughly) MP 15 but the first milepost is MP 72.4.
US 3's mileage includes MA 3's mileage.  MassDOT views US/MA 3 as one route.

-Why are there service plazas on only MA 128 (and I-95)?
Those existed prior to I-95's rerouting onto MA 128 & hence were allowed to remain.  Prior to the Interstate highway system taking effect; it was not uncommon to have service plazas along free highways in Massachusetts.

-Does Massachusetts post town line changes on freeways? I can tell when the town line changes based on overpasses, but I can't recall if town lines on freeways are signed.
Yes they do, but the signs tend to be small... except for the ones along the Mass Pike (I-90).

-Where is the "Mass Turnpike Points West" sign? I couldn't find any button copy in the state.
In Boston, along Trinity Place off Clarendon St. (MA 28)

As far as button-copy signs are concerned; such is becoming more rarer in the Bay State.
Here's this gem at Copley Square in Boston.
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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1197 on: August 05, 2019, 01:29:10 PM »

Can MassDOT and other entities finally finish repainting lines on the Mass Pike and other interstates? Some of the lines have faded out completely. Driving on I-90 through the Berkshires in the rain was difficult enough. Not having any painted lines for guidance - and plenty of broken reflectors made the drive miserable. Even worse - I was behind some paint trucks a month ago on the Pike, but it doesn't appear the project was ever finished. New paint lines come and go almost at random.

The state only appears to restripe freeways when they're resurfaced. God help you if you were driving on 290 from Auburn to Worcester in the past few years and wanted any kind of lane stripes; thankfully it's being resurfaced as we speak.
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Re: Massachusetts
« Reply #1198 on: August 06, 2019, 11:41:58 AM »

MassDOT is permanently closing the Clarendon Street on-ramp to I-90 (Mass Pike) West arguing that due to lower traffic counts vs. surrounding ramps and a higher accident rate that this will improve driver safety:
http://blog.mass.gov/transportation/massdot-highway/boston-i-90-westbound-clarendon-street-on-ramp-closing-permanently/?hootPostID=db9e7c67563a8a8bd421c7ef038173f5

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Massachusetts
« Reply #1199 on: August 06, 2019, 03:09:31 PM »

-Where is the "Mass Turnpike Points West" sign? I couldn't find any button copy in the state.
In Boston, along Trinity Place off Clarendon St. (MA 28)

Enjoy it while it lasts. This ramp closes for good 9/3 (honestly, I only remembered it was there about a month ago for the first time in years).
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