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Author Topic: I-10 East of Houston, Why So Crowded?  (Read 2287 times)

DJStephens

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Re: I-10 East of Houston, Why So Crowded?
« Reply #25 on: October 17, 2020, 09:56:38 PM »

After the pathetic debacle to link Los Angeles and the SF Bay Area with high speed rail I'm going to go with the attitude of "I'll believe it when I see it" in regards to a DFW-Houston high speed rail line. IIRC the LA-SF high speed rail line is now just going to be a Bakersfield to Fresno thing. And even that segment is still going to cost tens of billions of dollars.

To move perhaps a few thousand individuals.  If even that.  A few hundred, perhaps??  The cost of the disconnected HSR segment in the central valley - that could have finished the 710 tunnel and completed I-40 to Bakersfied/I-5.   
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Bobby5280

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Re: I-10 East of Houston, Why So Crowded?
« Reply #26 on: October 18, 2020, 01:02:38 PM »

The cost of that California HSR boondoggle might have been able to fund more than that. In addition to a proper completion of I-40 and the I-710 tunnel in LA there probably would have been money left over for other projects. I think CA-14 needs to be upgraded to Interstate quality all the way through Mojave up to CA-58 (maybe future I-40). CA-86 needs to be upgraded to Interstate quality from I-10 at Indio down to Brawley and CA-111 upgraded the rest of the way down to I-8 and El Centro. Oh, and US-101 needs all sorts of spot improvements between the LA and SF Bay areas.
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Plutonic Panda

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Re: I-10 East of Houston, Why So Crowded?
« Reply #27 on: October 18, 2020, 01:14:41 PM »

The HDC freeway was de facto canceled. The 710 south expansion was effectively indefinitely shelved due to local opposition. The 710 tunnel gap has been killed and it will be a miracle if it ever comes back. The last director of caltrans said new GP lanes are a relic of the past in California.

Color me very shocked if metro embarks on any of its planned highway expansion projects at all for a very long time and after the current round of freeway projects are completed I wonder if we’ll see anymore start up. Los Angeles is a shit hole. I live here and it’s infuriating how anti freeway these nutbag leaders have become.

The train is a joke. It’s “initial” operation is now planned to not be electrified, run 110 MPH, and only connect both ends of the valley. Cost estimates are nearing 100 billion and going up by the month. I won’t be shocked if the real costs of connecting LA to Palmdale are over 50 billion by itself. I doubt this train ever sees the light of day with current leadership. We need reforms on how we build infrastructure and cost reducing measures implemented.
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Bobby5280

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Re: I-10 East of Houston, Why So Crowded?
« Reply #28 on: October 18, 2020, 02:08:11 PM »

I think the situation in the big coastal cities of California and the Northeast is reaching "critical mass." The extreme costs of living, the high tax rates and the overall general level of pain in the ass affecting all aspects of life are starting to yield consequences.

How will local and state politicians be able to hang on to their anti-freeway hysteria if their local economies (particularly the hyper-inflated real estate market) implode into the toilet? They could go from being devoutly anti-freeway to years later pushing street and highway improvement projects to stimulate the economy.

There is a notable exodus of young adults who are moving to more affordable cities. They're either moving a short distance, such as from San Francisco to Sacramento, or they're moving farther away to states like Texas. Even some celebrities are leaving California. The biggest consequence will be if/when major companies pick up and leave. Elon Musk made a lot of headlines by threatening to move Tesla's headquarters out of California; he's still seriously considering it even after his factory in Fremont was allowed to re-open. The newest "gigafactory" will be built near Austin.

Regardless of population shifts, something really has to be done to reign in the exploding costs of infrastructure. It's insane how much time, legal action and money has to be spent to get any big projects, such as a new highway, built in the US. It's really pathetic.
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Scott5114

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Re: I-10 East of Houston, Why So Crowded?
« Reply #29 on: October 18, 2020, 02:46:00 PM »

Regardless of population shifts, something really has to be done to reign in the exploding costs of infrastructure. It's insane how much time, legal action and money has to be spent to get any big projects, such as a new highway, built in the US. It's really pathetic.

It's not just big projects. I'm trying to remodel a barn in a rural town of 7,000. So far it's required a public hearing, two Planning Commission meetings, and a city council meeting to get it done. Made contact with the city in July to get the necessary permits, and we're looking at the earliest final city council approval on December 10. And this is all just for the zoning nonsense, we haven't even got into building permits yet.
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bwana39

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Re: I-10 East of Houston, Why So Crowded?
« Reply #30 on: October 19, 2020, 10:40:53 AM »

The same on the fringes of smaller towns too. So I hear, in Oregon and some other states, you need building permits to build any non-agricultural structure in completely RURAL areas.  As I understand it, even the agricultural ones need permits in many cases.
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Plutonic Panda

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Re: I-10 East of Houston, Why So Crowded?
« Reply #31 on: October 19, 2020, 01:09:25 PM »

I know this is off topic but regarding the last few posts, now the 605 expansion is possibly being canceled in lieu of “alternative corridor enhancements” or something stupid like that. Anywho, I was just banned from Streetsblog for “repeated as hominem attacks” by Joe Linton who can’t provide to me a single example of where I’ve done so. That was in response to me responding to their anti-freeway article crying the race card opposing the expansion and my criticism of their article.

What a joke. I bet we can soon add to the list of canceled freeway projects the 605 expansion while the transit advocates will cry foul basking in a sea of 100 plus billion in mass transit expansion for LA alone.
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TXtoNJ

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Re: I-10 East of Houston, Why So Crowded?
« Reply #32 on: October 19, 2020, 01:39:36 PM »

I know this is off topic but regarding the last few posts, now the 605 expansion is possibly being canceled in lieu of “alternative corridor enhancements” or something stupid like that. Anywho, I was just banned from Streetsblog for “repeated as hominem attacks” by Joe Linton who can’t provide to me a single example of where I’ve done so. That was in response to me responding to their anti-freeway article crying the race card opposing the expansion and my criticism of their article.

What a joke. I bet we can soon add to the list of canceled freeway projects the 605 expansion while the transit advocates will cry foul basking in a sea of 100 plus billion in mass transit expansion for LA alone.

You're in California. Why not just get an initiative going?
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Plutonic Panda

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Re: I-10 East of Houston, Why So Crowded?
« Reply #33 on: October 20, 2020, 04:55:18 PM »

I know this is off topic but regarding the last few posts, now the 605 expansion is possibly being canceled in lieu of “alternative corridor enhancements” or something stupid like that. Anywho, I was just banned from Streetsblog for “repeated as hominem attacks” by Joe Linton who can’t provide to me a single example of where I’ve done so. That was in response to me responding to their anti-freeway article crying the race card opposing the expansion and my criticism of their article.

What a joke. I bet we can soon add to the list of canceled freeway projects the 605 expansion while the transit advocates will cry foul basking in a sea of 100 plus billion in mass transit expansion for LA alone.

You're in California. Why not just get an initiative going?
lots going on in my life. I plan to eventually.
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Bobby5280

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Re: I-10 East of Houston, Why So Crowded?
« Reply #34 on: October 21, 2020, 01:00:49 AM »

Quote from: Scott5114
It's not just big projects. I'm trying to remodel a barn in a rural town of 7,000. So far it's required a public hearing, two Planning Commission meetings, and a city council meeting to get it done.

I can sympathize, working in the commercial sign industry. Regulations vary widely depending on the city or town where you want to install something new. There are some stipulations where I have no quarrel, such as requiring UL Listing on any electrical sign. That's a win-win even if we don't get the job. Years later if we're having to service some other company's crap our service crew won't have to worry so much about getting electrocuted by it. Nevertheless, the regulations can grow out of control. Edmond banned any new LED-based outdoor variable message signs. And they're adding new restrictions all the time. OKC isn't much easier to deal with, but they're really demanding on the amount of red tape to get anything done.

As much as I can gripe about being forced to draw up an electrical section detail drawing to exact scale of some nothing channel letter sign we'll stick on a restaurant building fascia, that's nothing compared to what highway engineers have to draw up and revise over and over and over and over and over again for all the damned attorneys, politicians, press, neighborhood action groups and any other interested parties just to get one stage of planning done on a highway project or a bridge.

I really believe we are weakening ourselves as a nation with this inward fixation of bureaucratic nitpicking. I've said it before. the United States is literally losing its ability to build big things. Building big things is a big part of what made this nation great in the first place. Look back 50 years or more. There's all sorts of civil engineering projects that were ground-breaking for their time. All the various suspension bridges in the New York City area are testaments to that. How about the Hoover Dam, the Gateway Arch, the Pentagon or even the Interstate Highway System? It may not be Germany's Autobahn, but it covers a lot more mileage. And the Autobahn doesn't match the sheer scale of some of our highways, much less match some of the far more advanced freeway to freeway interchanges. But America is pricing itself out of building that kind of stuff.
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rte66man

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Re: I-10 East of Houston, Why So Crowded?
« Reply #35 on: October 21, 2020, 08:54:14 AM »

Quote from: Scott5114
It's not just big projects. I'm trying to remodel a barn in a rural town of 7,000. So far it's required a public hearing, two Planning Commission meetings, and a city council meeting to get it done.

I can sympathize, working in the commercial sign industry. Regulations vary widely depending on the city or town where you want to install something new. There are some stipulations where I have no quarrel, such as requiring UL Listing on any electrical sign. That's a win-win even if we don't get the job. Years later if we're having to service some other company's crap our service crew won't have to worry so much about getting electrocuted by it. Nevertheless, the regulations can grow out of control. Edmond banned any new LED-based outdoor variable message signs. And they're adding new restrictions all the time.

When I first read about Edmond's action, I agreed with you. However, I've changed my mind. One of those LED VM signs was installed on NW Expressway just east of Portland. During the day it isn't a problem, but at night it nearly caused me to have a wreck when it changed in my peripheral vision from a muted background to harsh white. I thought someone was coming out of a side drive straight at me.  Same goes for those stupid panel trucks with those ads on their sides.
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kphoger

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Re: I-10 East of Houston, Why So Crowded?
« Reply #36 on: October 21, 2020, 10:38:20 AM »

the commercial sign industry

When the company I work for built its current building here in Park City (KS), city ordinances wouldn't permit our company sign to be put up.  One of the city officers worked with the owner to come up with an alternate solution:  build the "sign" into the façade of the building itself, thereby making it a design feature no longer subject to said ordinances.

The city officer who helped develop that solution?  Oh, that was BTK.
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Bobby5280

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Re: I-10 East of Houston, Why So Crowded?
« Reply #37 on: October 21, 2020, 09:04:12 PM »

Quote from: rte6man
However, I've changed my mind. One of those LED VM signs was installed on NW Expressway just east of Portland. During the day it isn't a problem, but at night it nearly caused me to have a wreck when it changed in my peripheral vision from a muted background to harsh white. I thought someone was coming out of a side drive straight at me.

That sounds like the business didn't have the LED sign setup correctly. Any outdoor LED board worth a damn will have timers or solar sensors built-in to automatically adjust the brightness of the display between day and night. It's not difficult for a local sign code to take that factor into account.

The problem with Edmond is that suburb just wants to ban or severely restrict as many types of signs as possible. The funny thing is Edmond still has shitty looking signs. A hack-quality sign designer can make a tiny, modest sign look just as shitty as a big one. Squeezed and stretched default Arial type, bad color combinations and disorganized, cluttered layouts are just as common on small signs as big signs. Maybe even more common since the little modest signs are relatively cheap.

Aside from a LED sign's brightness problem there are standards and practices anyone creating ads for LED-based variable message signs should follow. Stark white backgrounds are not visually pleasing on most kinds of signs. On LED signs a white background can blow out lettering via overglow, especially if the letter strokes are narrow at all.
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Scott5114

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Re: I-10 East of Houston, Why So Crowded?
« Reply #38 on: October 22, 2020, 03:32:17 AM »

Since the Oklahoma contingent is here, you all might get a kick out of knowing that it's Blanchard handing out the red tape. Everyone we've dealt with has been nice and professional, it's just...you know, still red tape, despite how small the town is.
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