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Author Topic: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?  (Read 81727 times)

vdeane

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Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« on: April 27, 2014, 05:17:27 PM »

I was going through the internet when I found this "Ask the DOT" article in the Providence Journal: http://www.providencejournal.com/cars/ask-the-dot/20131013-ask-the-dot-numbering-exits-on-interstate-highways.ece

The really interesting part is here:
Quote
We have looked into moving to a distance-based exit numbering system. This system would help drivers better judge distances between exits and allow the department to add or change exits without renumbering the signs along the highway.

It is important to note, given our size and geographic location, this change is best made in cooperation with our bordering communities, Massachusetts and Connecticut, who also have sequentially numbered highway exits. We are working closely with them to determine how this system could best be implemented in our region.

So... given that, MA's pending conversion, and CT switching a couple routes soon, do you think we'll see mileage based numbers come to RI soon?
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dgolub

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #1 on: April 27, 2014, 07:23:05 PM »

Interesting.  Sequentially numbered exits really are an endangered species at this point, aren't they?
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Duke87

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #2 on: April 27, 2014, 07:50:34 PM »

I fail to see how the practices of Connecticut and Massachusetts have any real bearing on what Rhode Island does. Delaware has had no qualms numbering its exits differently than all of its neighbors, after all.

This is just classic New England attitude of being reluctant to embrace change.
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bob7374

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #3 on: April 27, 2014, 10:44:04 PM »

Interesting.  Sequentially numbered exits really are an endangered species at this point, aren't they?
It will be interesting to see if RI and neighboring states do coordinate milepost based exits. For example, I-295 around Providence. Currently MA and RI have separate sequential systems, however the 2009 MUTCD recommends that 3di loop or semi-circular routes that cross state lines use one milepost system throughout, like what is done with I-495 on the Capital Beltway, I-275 around Cincinnati, and elsewhere. If this is to be done with I-295, MassDOT and RIDOT would need to cooperate on a single milepost system that would continue 4 mile into MA to I-95.

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #4 on: April 27, 2014, 10:51:52 PM »

I fail to see how the practices of Connecticut and Massachusetts have any real bearing on what Rhode Island does. Delaware has had no qualms numbering its exits differently than all of its neighbors, after all.

This is just classic New England attitude of being reluctant to embrace change.
Absolutely agreed. For such a small state, though, it makes sense for RI to mile-number I-95 and I-295 - and arguably RI 4. I-195's exits probably aren't worth the bother. Presumably RI 10 and US 6 would remain unnumbered.

KEVIN_224

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #5 on: April 27, 2014, 11:47:12 PM »

On I-95, the highest exit number would be 43 in Pawtucket (presently Exit 30), barely a half mile from the Massachusetts border.
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southshore720

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #6 on: April 28, 2014, 12:34:29 AM »

Presumably RI 10 and US 6 would remain unnumbered.
RI 10 received exit numbers in a recent sign replacement project.  The exit numbers on RI 10 end at the US 6 merge.  There are no exit numbers on the "6/10 Connector."  As is the case with both RI 10 and RI 37, the exits are so close together that mileage-based wouldn't make much sense.  I don't see RI going mileage-based for at least 10 more years.
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spooky

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #7 on: April 28, 2014, 06:48:57 AM »

I was going through the internet when I found this "Ask the DOT" article in the Providence Journal: http://www.providencejournal.com/cars/ask-the-dot/20131013-ask-the-dot-numbering-exits-on-interstate-highways.ece

The really interesting part is here:
Quote
We have looked into moving to a distance-based exit numbering system. This system would help drivers better judge distances between exits and allow the department to add or change exits without renumbering the signs along the highway.

It is important to note, given our size and geographic location, this change is best made in cooperation with our bordering communities, Massachusetts and Connecticut, who also have sequentially numbered highway exits. We are working closely with them to determine how this system could best be implemented in our region.

So... given that, MA's pending conversion, and CT switching a couple routes soon, do you think we'll see mileage based numbers come to RI soon?

If by "soon" you mean RI will start to think about it after MA and CT have both finished theirs, then yes, "soon".

If they are basing their actions on their neighbors, then it doesn't make sense to do so until I-95 has been converted in both neighboring states. We know that MassDOT plans a west to east conversion, starting with smaller highways. Based on this we can assume that I-95 will be near the end of the 10-year window MassDOT has forecast for the conversion.
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dgolub

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #8 on: April 28, 2014, 08:50:51 AM »

Interesting.  Sequentially numbered exits really are an endangered species at this point, aren't they?
It will be interesting to see if RI and neighboring states do coordinate milepost based exits. For example, I-295 around Providence. Currently MA and RI have separate sequential systems, however the 2009 MUTCD recommends that 3di loop or semi-circular routes that cross state lines use one milepost system throughout, like what is done with I-495 on the Capital Beltway, I-275 around Cincinnati, and elsewhere. If this is to be done with I-295, MassDOT and RIDOT would need to cooperate on a single milepost system that would continue 4 mile into MA to I-95.

Yeah, having the I-295 exit numbers start over at the state line really doesn't make sense considering how short I-295 is in Massachusetts.  Certainly, if the Hutchinson Parkway/Merritt Parkway exit numbers can (sort of) continue across a state line, then there's certainly no reason why it can't happen here.  There are some other places where it happens not involving a three-digit interstate.  I'm pretty sure that I-86 uses a single exit numbering scheme across the New York-Pennsylvania border.
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signalman

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #9 on: April 28, 2014, 11:54:35 AM »

Interesting.  Sequentially numbered exits really are an endangered species at this point, aren't they?
It will be interesting to see if RI and neighboring states do coordinate milepost based exits. For example, I-295 around Providence. Currently MA and RI have separate sequential systems, however the 2009 MUTCD recommends that 3di loop or semi-circular routes that cross state lines use one milepost system throughout, like what is done with I-495 on the Capital Beltway, I-275 around Cincinnati, and elsewhere. If this is to be done with I-295, MassDOT and RIDOT would need to cooperate on a single milepost system that would continue 4 mile into MA to I-95.

Yeah, having the I-295 exit numbers start over at the state line really doesn't make sense considering how short I-295 is in Massachusetts.  Certainly, if the Hutchinson Parkway/Merritt Parkway exit numbers can (sort of) continue across a state line, then there's certainly no reason why it can't happen here.  There are some other places where it happens not involving a three-digit interstate.  I'm pretty sure that I-86 uses a single exit numbering scheme across the New York-Pennsylvania border.
A better (and longer) example is I-24 where it dips into Georgia from Tennessee.  It's in Georgia for 3-4 miles and Tennessee's mileposts are maintained, there's even two exits within Georgia.

Big John

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #10 on: April 28, 2014, 12:14:32 PM »

Interesting.  Sequentially numbered exits really are an endangered species at this point, aren't they?
It will be interesting to see if RI and neighboring states do coordinate milepost based exits. For example, I-295 around Providence. Currently MA and RI have separate sequential systems, however the 2009 MUTCD recommends that 3di loop or semi-circular routes that cross state lines use one milepost system throughout, like what is done with I-495 on the Capital Beltway, I-275 around Cincinnati, and elsewhere. If this is to be done with I-295, MassDOT and RIDOT would need to cooperate on a single milepost system that would continue 4 mile into MA to I-95.

Yeah, having the I-295 exit numbers start over at the state line really doesn't make sense considering how short I-295 is in Massachusetts.  Certainly, if the Hutchinson Parkway/Merritt Parkway exit numbers can (sort of) continue across a state line, then there's certainly no reason why it can't happen here.  There are some other places where it happens not involving a three-digit interstate.  I'm pretty sure that I-86 uses a single exit numbering scheme across the New York-Pennsylvania border.
A better (and longer) example is I-24 where it dips into Georgia from Tennessee.  It's in Georgia for 3-4 miles and Tennessee's mileposts are maintained, there's even two exits within Georgia.
The Georgia portion uses GA milepost numbers, but uses Tennessee exit numbers for both exits.
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signalman

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #11 on: April 28, 2014, 12:27:51 PM »

The Georgia portion uses GA milepost numbers, but uses Tennessee exit numbers for both exits.
Sorry, I've never driven it.  I just assumed (apparently incorrectly) that since TN's exits are maintained so were the mileposts.

PHLBOS

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #12 on: April 28, 2014, 01:37:59 PM »

It will be interesting to see if RI and neighboring states do coordinate milepost based exits. For example, I-295 around Providence. Currently MA and RI have separate sequential systems, however the 2009 MUTCD recommends that 3di loop or semi-circular routes that cross state lines use one milepost system throughout, like what is done with I-495 on the Capital Beltway, I-275 around Cincinnati, and elsewhere.
Wow, I didn't realize that the I-495 exits on the VA side changed over to follow the ones on the MD side.  That must've been a fairly recent change.

If this is to be done with I-295, MassDOT and RIDOT would need to cooperate on a single milepost system that would continue 4 mile into MA to I-95.
IIRC, when I-295 was first built in the late 60s/early 70s, the RI-based sequential exit numbers indeed spilled over into MA; the US 1 interchange in MA was originally Exit 12 (N & S) & the I-95 interchange was originally Exit 12 (N & S).

I also believe that the original exit numbers for I-195 in MA may have also sequenced after the RI numbers as well.

Both roads in MA switched to their current numbers (reset at the state line) sometime during the mid-70s.
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froggie

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #13 on: April 28, 2014, 02:02:31 PM »

Quote
Wow, I didn't realize that the I-495 exits on the VA side changed over to follow the ones on the MD side.  That must've been a fairly recent change.

No later than 2001.
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southshore720

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #14 on: April 28, 2014, 02:08:11 PM »

Prior to I-295's sign replacement in the mid-to-late 2000's, old BGSs between Exits 7-10 contained exit tabs that had both the sequential exit number and the mile marker.  A road geek out there may have more historical background on the significance of that... ;-)
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PHLBOS

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #15 on: April 28, 2014, 04:12:36 PM »

Quote
Wow, I didn't realize that the I-495 exits on the VA side changed over to follow the ones on the MD side.  That must've been a fairly recent change.

No later than 2001.
I was out at IAD in 2005 for a site visit and used I-495 to get there and I believe the previous I-495-VA exit numbers (Exit 1 being I-95 South/395 North and increasing to the MD State Line) were still present then. 

Forgive me but is that listed 2001 date a typo for 2011?  I have some older AAA maps of the area at home to verify but even if AAA was off by a year or two; it'll give me a rough ballpark figure towards when the change took place.

Prior to I-295's sign replacement in the mid-to-late 2000's, old BGSs between Exits 7-10 contained exit tabs that had both the sequential exit number and the mile marker.  A road geek out there may have more historical background on the significance of that... ;-)
That was an experiment that was tried & ultimately dropped.  I-93 in MA, north of Boston, had similar as well until the mid-80s when the exit numbers changed to the current ones.
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1995hoo

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #16 on: April 28, 2014, 05:16:19 PM »

Virginia's portion of I-495 was renumbered in 2000. I've lived at my current house since July 2001 and the exit numbers had already been changed before I moved here.

Previously Exit 1 was just to the west of the Wilson Bridge in Alexandria at the interchange with US-1 and the numbers ascended up to Exit 14 at the GW Parkway just south of the American Legion Bridge. (An Exit 3A was added between Exits 2 and 3, though I don't remember when.) Prior to 1980, the numbering continued sequentially in a clockwise direction around the Beltway through Maryland up to Exit 38 at I-295, just across the river from Exit 1. In 1980 Maryland decided to use sequential numbering. At that time, the eastern half of the Beltway was numbered solely as I-95, so the FHWA guideline that numbering proceed from south to north took precedence due to the 2di status. Accordingly, Exit 38 became Exit 2 and the numbering proceeded up to Exit 27 at the "College Park Interchange" where I-95 turned north towards Baltimore; beyond that point, I-495's exit numbering continued the I-95 numbers on up to Exit 41 at what was then the Maryland portion of the GW Parkway (now the Clara Barton Parkway) just north of the American Legion Bridge. Virginia didn't change its numbers. Apparently some people found the duplication of numbers in the two states confusing.

When Virginia eventually did change its numbers, the decision was to continue Maryland's numbering up to the Springfield Interchange (Exit 57 on the Outer Loop) but then to apply I-95's exit numbers to the remaining portion from Springfield to the Wilson Bridge. The result is that when you head anti-clockwise around the Beltway, say if you're going from Fairfax to Alexandria, you pass Exit 54 (Braddock Road), Exit 57 (I-95 and I-395), and then the next exit is Exit 173 (Van Dorn Street), on up to Exit 177 at the Wilson Bridge. (On the Inner Loop, the Springfield Interchange is Exit 170 instead of Exit 57 due to I-95's numbering taking precedence). It confuses the crap out of visitors to the area. Exit 173 is the closest to my house and I always tell people not to be fooled by the exit numbering—if I tell them Exit 173, visitors who don't know the area understandably think it's a long way yet to go when they're passing Exit 54!

I really don't understand why some people found it confusing that the exit numbering changed at the Maryland state line. After all, it's pretty standard for exit numbering to reset when you cross into another state. The thing that may have been weirder was the way Virginia's numbers went clockwise (per the original numbering and the normal practice on a beltway) but Maryland's went anticlockwise. At the same time, how hard is it to give someone clear enough directions for it not to be an issue?

"bob7374" mentions the MUTCD expressing a preference for continued milepost numbering on loop or partial-circle 3di routes. Is the concern the potential for duplication of numbers between the two states?
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dgolub

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #17 on: April 28, 2014, 07:11:37 PM »

A better (and longer) example is I-24 where it dips into Georgia from Tennessee.  It's in Georgia for 3-4 miles and Tennessee's mileposts are maintained, there's even two exits within Georgia.

There's a similar situation with I-684 crossing into Connecticut from New York for a mile or two, but there's no exit there.
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vdeane

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #18 on: April 28, 2014, 07:33:17 PM »

If they are basing their actions on their neighbors, then it doesn't make sense to do so until I-95 has been converted in both neighboring states. We know that MassDOT plans a west to east conversion, starting with smaller highways. Based on this we can assume that I-95 will be near the end of the 10-year window MassDOT has forecast for the conversion.
10 YEARS!?!  That's certainly a long time for an exit number conversion.

I'm pretty sure that I-86 uses a single exit numbering scheme across the New York-Pennsylvania border.
It does.  I have no idea why exit 3 was missing before PA adopted mile-based numbers.  If NY adopts mile-based numbers, they'll probably reset at the border (less expensive than re-mileposting the entire route).
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andy3175

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #19 on: April 28, 2014, 11:12:46 PM »

If they are basing their actions on their neighbors, then it doesn't make sense to do so until I-95 has been converted in both neighboring states. We know that MassDOT plans a west to east conversion, starting with smaller highways. Based on this we can assume that I-95 will be near the end of the 10-year window MassDOT has forecast for the conversion.
10 YEARS!?!  That's certainly a long time for an exit number conversion.

Nah, 10 years seems fairly realistic. Just ask Caltrans, which starting numbering its freeway exits in 2002 and is still not done with their project (as of 2014) with plenty of unnumbered exit numbers remaining.
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Duke87

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #20 on: April 28, 2014, 11:15:32 PM »

I-195's exits probably aren't worth the bother.

1A/B = 0A/B
2 = 1A
3 = 1B
4 = 1C
5 = 1D
6 = 2
7 = 3A
8 = 3B

Yeah, not exactly a helpful conversion.
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PHLBOS

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #21 on: April 29, 2014, 12:55:36 PM »

I-195's exits probably aren't worth the bother.

1A/B = 0A/B
2 = 1A
3 = 1B
4 = 1C
5 = 1D
6 = 2
7 = 3A
8 = 3B

Yeah, not exactly a helpful conversion.
Believe it or not & given the above; I could actually see similar happening.  Though I'm not 100% sure RIDOT will actually use Exit 0; if they don't, I could see the above listings will increase by 1.
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vdeane

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #22 on: April 29, 2014, 04:58:12 PM »

Nah, 10 years seems fairly realistic. Just ask Caltrans, which starting numbering its freeway exits in 2002 and is still not done with their project (as of 2014) with plenty of unnumbered exit numbers remaining.
IMO Caltrans isn't exactly an agency of exit numbering excellence.  Just look at those boxes...

I usually think about Pennsylvania and Maine with respect to numbering conversions.

I-195's exits probably aren't worth the bother.

1A/B = 0A/B
2 = 1A
3 = 1B
4 = 1C
5 = 1D
6 = 2
7 = 3A
8 = 3B

Yeah, not exactly a helpful conversion.
Believe it or not & given the above; I could actually see similar happening.  Though I'm not 100% sure RIDOT will actually use Exit 0; if they don't, I could see the above listings will increase by 1.
Current 1 is I-95 so the number could also be dropped.
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PHLBOS

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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #23 on: April 29, 2014, 06:21:16 PM »

Current 1 is I-95 so the number could also be dropped.
Actually, the current Exit 1B is Eddy St. & 1A is Point St.  The ramps to I-95 currently have no exit number (they never did); however, the fore-mentioned Exit 1B-A ramps are located within the I-95 ramps (1B branches off the I-95 SB ramp, 1A off the I-95 NB ramp)

Whether or not RIDOT decides to actually place Exit 0B-A or move the Exit 1B-A tabs for the I-95 ramps themselves is anybody's guess.  While such a scenario would warrant the use of Exit 0s; most northeastern states tend not to use them.  Likely because northeastern states mostly numbered their interchanges sequentially... although I-195 in NJ was mile-marker-based from the get-go yet NJDOT signed its I-295 exits w/the 295 numbers (60A-B) rather than 0A-B. 
« Last Edit: April 29, 2014, 06:25:22 PM by PHLBOS »
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Re: Rhode Island mileage based exit numbers?
« Reply #24 on: April 29, 2014, 11:46:51 PM »

I just did it the "pure" way - take the mile marker and round to the nearest integer. This means anything at less than mile 0.5 is an exit 0.

Different states have their own varying methods of pegging exit numbers to mile markers - what Rhode Island does may make the actual numbers posted slightly different from mine. But the general point remains: they have 8 exits in 3 miles, so they are going to have a bunch of alphabet soup no matter what unless they leave it sequential.
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