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Author Topic: Bridge- and route-clinching trip possibility (PA, VA)  (Read 1178 times)

hbelkins

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Re: Bridge- and route-clinching trip possibility (PA, VA)
« Reply #25 on: August 23, 2018, 03:29:33 PM »

Day 4 (Monday)

I had started noticing the telltale signs of either an allergy attack or the onset of a cold a couple of days prior, and had stopped in Amherst, Va., the day before to get some cough drops and Benadryl. I didn't rise too early on Monday and really was undecided on what I wanted to do. I finally decided on revisiting a couple of routes I had last driven years ago.

From Beckley, I headed south on WV 16. The one and only time I ever drove WV 16 from Beckley to Mullens was about 30 years ago, and it was approaching dark, so that's where I went. From there, I retraced a route in reverse that I had done just a few months prior; that is, taking WV 16 south from Pineville through Welch and War to Bishop. I continued into Virginia, then used Alt. VA 16 to connect to US 19/460. I didn't go searching for Tazewell cutouts on this trip, but the ones at the North Tazewell intersection of VA 16 and its alternate are still standing.

I took US 19 south, stopping for gas at the Claypool Hill Walmart, where it's always been very cheap. Because of my eyes burning and the effects of the Benadryl, I took a short nap at the parking lot there, then continued south on 19. I followed it to Abingdon, then hopped on I-81 south via VA 140 (noticing again the error circle 140 and 372 signs). I used I-381 into downtown Bristol, then US 11E/19 to the 19E/19W split in Tennessee. That intersection has been rebuilt from an at-grade to a grade separation for reasons unknown to me.

I followed 19E south past the spot where no matter which way you turn on US 321, you're headed south, at Elizabethton.

I had driven 19E years ago, but I had forgotten just how bad of a road it is between the two NC 194 intersections (Minneapolis and Spruce Pine). It's really no better than the awful 19W. It might be time to decommission both of those routes and just have US 19 run concurrently with 11E and 23/I-26. Through traffic between Bristol and Asheville is not going to use either split of US 19.

There's work ongoing to widen 19E to four lanes in the Spruce Pine/Burnsville area (they were working on that section the last time I was through there.) Looks like the goal is to eventually have a four-lane route all the way from I-26 to Spruce Pine.

Once I reached I-26, I took it into Tennessee, then stopped at Gray to book a room online. I opted to stay in Kingsport, and I ended up taking TN 75 to TN 36 to TN 93. I need to explore Kingsport a little more thoroughly, as it looks like TN 93 provides a nice little beltline with grade-separated intersections from I-26 all the way around to US 11W.

Day 5 (Tuesday)

The route home from here is very familiar. I used TN 93, which becomes VA 224, to connect with US 23. I made a slight detour onto the business route at Wise to see if any of the old signs are still standing. (There used to be a square Massachusetts state-route-type 23 marker in downtown Wise). It's gone, as are what cutouts were there. There are a couple of older assemblies at the SR 757 intersection, but there's really nothing left of interest in Wise, as opposed to Norton, where there are gobs of cutouts left.

Not a lot of interest to report on the remainder of the route (US 23 north to Jenkins, US 119 south to Whitesburg, KY 15 north to Jackson, then KY 30 and KY 52 on home). The work is progressing on the widening of KY 15 just north of Hazard. There are two separate projects. One starts at the end of the Hazard bypass and runs to near Morton Boulevard, it's only about 5 percent complete. The other continues past the Hal Rogers Parkway/KY 80 interchange for a couple of miles and is 75 percent complete.)
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froggie

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Re: Bridge- and route-clinching trip possibility (PA, VA)
« Reply #26 on: August 23, 2018, 05:24:16 PM »

Quote from: hbelkins
Interesting that eastbound traffic on 60 has to stop at the 24 intersection; it's almost as if the east 24-to east 60 movement is considered the through movement here, and vice versa (west 60 to west 24).

That is correct.  There's twice as much traffic on 24 to the south as there is on 60 to the west.

Quote
There is some work taking place at the northern end of the Blacksburg business route, but I couldn't tell what's going on. I know this location has been discussed often, and its location at the foot of the mountain has been mentioned, but I actually noticed that there's a slight uphill rise on eastbound 460 that would allow vehicles to scrub off some speed should a traffic light be installed there.

It's been discussed in other threads.  VDOT wants to avoid the potential troubles of a signal entirely (even with the slight uphill you mentioned), so they're putting in a J-turn/R-Cut/whatever-you-want-to-call-it.
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74/171FAN

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Re: Bridge- and route-clinching trip possibility (PA, VA)
« Reply #27 on: August 23, 2018, 05:38:15 PM »

Quote
There is some work taking place at the northern end of the Blacksburg business route, but I couldn't tell what's going on. I know this location has been discussed often, and its location at the foot of the mountain has been mentioned, but I actually noticed that there's a slight uphill rise on eastbound 460 that would allow vehicles to scrub off some speed should a traffic light be installed there.

It's been discussed in other threads.  VDOT wants to avoid the potential troubles of a signal entirely (even with the slight uphill you mentioned), so they're putting in a J-turn/R-Cut/whatever-you-want-to-call-it.


See here.
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I am now a PennDOT employee.  My opinions/views do not necessarily reflect the opinions/views of PennDOT.

hbelkins

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Re: Bridge- and route-clinching trip possibility (PA, VA)
« Reply #28 on: August 24, 2018, 02:15:12 PM »

I neglected to mention gas prices the last couple of days. Gas in Beckley was $2.899. In Roxboro, NC, it was around $2.599. South Boston, Va. was $2.499. I filled up at the Walmart in the Pounding Mill/Claypool Hill, Va. area for $2.499. But the cheapest I saw was in Kingsport, Tenn. and just across the border in Virginia, at $2.409.
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