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Author Topic: New York State Thruway  (Read 355364 times)

cl94

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1825 on: February 19, 2020, 06:53:38 PM »

Do the Thruway service areas not still have mechanics and repair shops?

I think those were taken out with the 90s renovations.
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MASTERNC

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1826 on: February 19, 2020, 08:00:23 PM »

I'm doing some research for a project about the NY Thruway's service plaza. Iím looking for some information that can put NYís thruway stops in perspective. Are they run-of-the-mill, compared to other states? Do some toll roads have stops with more amenities (car wash? Showers? Mechanics? Non-fast food choices?). Is there one standout among rest stops? If so, Iíd love to know about it.
I'm trying to get a feel for how rest stops are reinventing themselves and if thatís a common trend or not and compare how NY stands up to the other states. Any help you can provide is most appreciated!

I think Illinois put car washes in many of their service plazas (oases) during the last renovation.
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SignBridge

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1827 on: February 19, 2020, 09:24:13 PM »

It's regrettable that most rest-stops today only have fast-food fare.
When I was growing up in the 1960's all these service areas had sit-down chain restaurants. Howard Johnsons was the most common, but there were other brands as well.
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Rothman

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1828 on: February 19, 2020, 09:44:22 PM »

Nobody has time to sit down and tip.
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roadman65

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1829 on: February 19, 2020, 09:54:56 PM »

It's regrettable that most rest-stops today only have fast-food fare.
When I was growing up in the 1960's all these service areas had sit-down chain restaurants. Howard Johnsons was the most common, but there were other brands as well.
Not only rest stops but also Dunkin Donuts (now just Dunkin) had sit down with servers waiting on you before it went walk up and wait at counter and seat yourself.

For a while NJ Turnpike had Marriot when they owned Roy Rogers and Bob's Big Boy had your choice.  For sit down it was Bob's and for eat n run it was Roy's.  Do not know if the NYS Thruway had the two eatery concept of one sit down and other pay and wait like NJ did or not.
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vdeane

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1830 on: February 20, 2020, 01:15:05 PM »

It's regrettable that most rest-stops today only have fast-food fare.
When I was growing up in the 1960's all these service areas had sit-down chain restaurants. Howard Johnsons was the most common, but there were other brands as well.
Who wants to spend the time to sit down and wait on service?  When I'm on the road, I want to eat my food, use the bathroom, and top off the gas tank as quickly as possible - not wait for table service.  Besides, sit-down is more awkward if you're traveling on your own and/or don't like making small talk.
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SignBridge

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1831 on: February 20, 2020, 04:38:03 PM »

Well, maybe the best answer is to have both types, as roadman65 said in his above post. That would meet everyone's needs.
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cl94

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1832 on: February 20, 2020, 05:43:48 PM »

There are reasons why table service restaurants have mostly disappeared from service areas around the world and those along rural freeways are mostly limited to truck stop diners and Cracker Barrel/Bob Evans/Denny's/Perkins. All of them are pure economics. Not only do quick serve restaurants cost less to operate, they also get more business, as people willing to pay the higher service area prices are generally in a rush. And the people willing to take a longer meal on the road are truckers or the older demographic, which is served by the establishments I listed above.

Edit: typo
« Last Edit: February 20, 2020, 07:09:46 PM by cl94 »
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kalvado

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1833 on: February 20, 2020, 05:55:17 PM »

There are reasons why table service restaurants have mostly disappeared from service areas around the world and those along rural freeways are mostly limited to truck stop diners and Cracker Barrel/Bob Evans/Denny's/Perkins. All of them are pure economics. Not only do quick serve restaurants cost more to operate, they also get more business, as people willing to pay the higher service area prices are generally in a rush. And the people willing to take a longer meal on the road are truckers or the older demographic, which is served by the establishments I listed above.
If anything, I wonder if new generation semi-fast food places, like Panera or Chipotle, will  show up in rest areas. There is a lot of room between McD and a proper table service place.
« Last Edit: February 20, 2020, 05:57:43 PM by kalvado »
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cl94

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1834 on: February 20, 2020, 06:28:57 PM »

Ohio has Panera in some service areas.
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Beltway

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1835 on: February 20, 2020, 07:04:47 PM »

There are reasons why table service restaurants have mostly disappeared from service areas around the world and those along rural freeways are mostly limited to truck stop diners and Cracker Barrel/Bob Evans/Denny's/Perkins. All of them are pure economics. Not only do quick serve restaurants cost more to operate, they also get more business, as people willing to pay the higher service area prices are generally in a rush. And the people willing to take a longer meal on the road are truckers or the older demographic, which is served by the establishments I listed above.

I have patronized Wendy's for at least 20 years, very good burgers and other fare.  Fast food in the sense of no table waiters.  Not very expensive.  All over the country.  Easy to find on nav system.
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froggie

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1836 on: February 21, 2020, 09:35:25 AM »

Nobody has time to sit down and tip.

Disagree.  My wife is an example of the type of traveler who prefers to do sit down restaurants on trips.
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Rothman

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1837 on: February 21, 2020, 09:45:01 AM »

Nobody has time to sit down and tip.

Disagree.  My wife is an example of the type of traveler who prefers to do sit down restaurants on trips.
Yeah, my wife used to be that way. :D
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deathtopumpkins

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1838 on: February 21, 2020, 10:32:44 AM »

If anything, I wonder if new generation semi-fast food places, like Panera or Chipotle, will  show up in rest areas. There is a lot of room between McD and a proper table service place.

Connecticut's newly renovated I-95 service plazas include either a Chipotle (Darien), a Qdoba (Fairfield), or a Moe's (Milford), in addition to the range of fast food options. East of New Haven they're smaller and have just Dunk's, Subway, McDonald's, etc.

New Hampshire's new Hooksett service plazas on I-93 include no national chain restaurants at all, instead including two counter-serve options: The Common Man (NH local chain) and "Hi-Way Diner".
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froggie

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1839 on: February 21, 2020, 10:37:47 AM »

Quote
"Hi-Way Diner"

Also part of the Common Man family...as is the 104 Diner in New Hampton, the Airport Diner in Manchester, and the Tilton Diner.
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deathtopumpkins

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1840 on: February 21, 2020, 10:40:04 AM »

Interesting. I'm guessing NHDOT just franchised out the whole food operation to the Common Man, and they chose to open two separate "brands" there? Seems like a weird decision and it would have been more efficient to just have one.
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Rothman

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1841 on: February 21, 2020, 10:54:48 AM »

Quote
"Hi-Way Diner"

Also part of the Common Man family...as is the 104 Diner in New Hampton, the Airport Diner in Manchester, and the Tilton Diner.
Love those diners.
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webny99

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1842 on: February 21, 2020, 12:26:55 PM »

Nobody has time to sit down and tip.
Disagree.  My wife is an example of the type of traveler who prefers to do sit down restaurants on trips.
Yeah, my wife used to be that way. :D

But, would they want to do so at a service area?

Service areas are mostly designed for quick stops: bathroom, fuel, vending, etc.
The purpose of sit-down is for a higher quality, but slower-paced, experience, and that seems to align more with an off-route type of stop -- maybe even traveling on a US or state route instead of the interstate to begin with!
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vdeane

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1843 on: February 21, 2020, 01:27:39 PM »

Thinking about it more, I wonder if sit-down restaurants will come back into fashion when electric cars become more common, as they won't be able to quickly refuel for a couple minutes and will instead need an hour to charge most of the way.  Electric vehicle road trips inherently require longer, more frequent stops.
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froggie

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1844 on: February 21, 2020, 01:35:07 PM »

But, would they want to do so at a service area?

Service areas are mostly designed for quick stops: bathroom, fuel, vending, etc.
The purpose of sit-down is for a higher quality, but slower-paced, experience, and that seems to align more with an off-route type of stop -- maybe even traveling on a US or state route instead of the interstate to begin with!

Service areas, despite their higher prices, eliminate the need to significantly navigate off the tollway, as well as reduces the inherent toll penalty incurred in exiting off a tollway then later hopping back on at the same exit.

So for some, the answer would be "yes".
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empirestate

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1845 on: February 21, 2020, 05:08:49 PM »

I'm doing some research for a project about the NY Thruway's service plaza. Iím looking for some information that can put NYís thruway stops in perspective. Are they run-of-the-mill, compared to other states? Do some toll roads have stops with more amenities (car wash? Showers? Mechanics? Non-fast food choices?). Is there one standout among rest stops? If so, Iíd love to know about it.
I'm trying to get a feel for how rest stops are reinventing themselves and if thatís a common trend or not and compare how NY stands up to the other states. Any help you can provide is most appreciated!

I'd also be curious to know if there was ever any intention of architectural significance behind the design of the renovated buildings? There are definitely some regionally relevant styles that could be (are?) invoked, but I'm not sure if that was ever deliberate.

Angola is the only service area that stands out to me, mainly because of the pedestrian bridges crossing the Thruway, and the fact that the food and restrooms are in the median.

IMO there's not really any other particular ones that are very unique or outstanding, at least not between the PA line and Albany.

Iroquois and Indian Castle were once in that category; located opposite each other, they were formerly connected by a pedestrian bridge like Ramapo/Sloatsburg.

Who wants to spend the time to sit down and wait on service?  When I'm on the road, I want to eat my food, use the bathroom, and top off the gas tank as quickly as possible - not wait for table service.  Besides, sit-down is more awkward if you're traveling on your own and/or don't like making small talk.

Oh I do, for sure. But I'm more likely to want to do so in an off-Thruway context. (And I've long moved beyond feeling the awkwardness of solo dining. It's just so commonplace in the city, and avoiding small talk couldn't be easier in this age of personal devices.)
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cl94

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1846 on: February 21, 2020, 05:57:14 PM »

I'd also be curious to know if there was ever any intention of architectural significance behind the design of the renovated buildings? There are definitely some regionally relevant styles that could be (are?) invoked, but I'm not sure if that was ever deliberate.

The most notable architectural difference is between the McDonald's buildings and the "everything else" buildings.
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webny99

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1847 on: February 21, 2020, 07:08:59 PM »

the inherent toll penalty incurred in exiting off a tollway then later hopping back on at the same exit.

In what states is this an issue?
Never heard of it happening anywhere in the Northeast.
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cl94

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1848 on: February 21, 2020, 07:12:00 PM »

the inherent toll penalty incurred in exiting off a tollway then later hopping back on at the same exit.

In what states is this an issue?
Never heard of it happening anywhere in the Northeast.

It's more of a thing on barrier toll systems, such as the Garden State Parkway and Illinois Tollway, that have ramp tolls. NY and MA have no penalty, can't remember the other ticket systems.
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RobbieL2415

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Re: New York State Thruway
« Reply #1849 on: February 21, 2020, 07:41:47 PM »

Amenities in NY are pretty typical compared to other states with toll roads, as far as I have seen. A couple of fast food outlets, a coffee shop, convenience store, gas, restrooms (including 1 single-occupant unisex), tourist info, wifi is the typical set of amenities. Many locations have a farmer's market during the growing season.

-Sloatsburg (NB between 15A and 16) is by far the largest single-direction facility and the only one with two public levels. This one also has a parking garage.
-Directly opposite is Ramapo (SB between 16 and 15A), the smallest service area. This is basically a glorified McDonald's and, before the 1990s, required crossing the Thruway via a bridge to Sloatsburg for most services.
-Angola (both directions between 57A and 58) is the only facility in the median. Parking lots and fuel on the outside of the roadways, building in a wide median accessible by enclosed bridges. Angola is about the same size as Sloatsburg, but it serves both directions.
-New Baltimore (both directions between 21B and 21A) has a separate rest area/tourist info center/playground accessible only from NB.
-A closed pair of service areas is on the Berkshire Spur east of the Castleton-on-Hudson Bridge. These closed shortly after I-90 through Albany opened due to a lack of traffic.
-Combined service areas and welcome centers were planned on I-90 WB near Exit B3 and I-90 EB near Exit 61 in the 1990s, but never built. McDonald's would have been a major funding partner.
It would appear as though the closed SPs on the Berkshire Extension are now a catering business and a maintenance yard.

There's the truck stop off the Austerlitz/New Lebanon exit, so perhaps it didn't make sense for them to build a SP.  But then again, no services from Lee to Pattersonville.
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