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Author Topic: I49 in LA  (Read 501078 times)

brownpelican

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #250 on: June 02, 2012, 01:31:40 AM »

Also, whats the opinion of people on here when discussing hurricane evacuation? I was thinking the DOTD could sign a state highway (or create US 251) with signs saying "TO I-55/I-10" from Houma over the Gramercy Bridge, and tie in the I-55/I-10 interchange. It's an idea, and a super sensible one for evacuation. Maybe even six lanes since it's going to evacuate the entire Houma/Thibodaux area. Just my 2 cents!

Absolutely not! As Anthony said, the last thing you need is more traffic on I-10 or I-55. People need to start discovering state and US routes...and some parishes are encouraging that (Tangipahoa, Saint Tammany). The Westbank has a great evacuation route in LA 3127 (from I-310). Yes, it's only two lanes, but it's a straight shot to Donaldsonville and LA 1.

US 90 is sufficient to carry traffic from Houma to Lafayette and I-49 north/I-10 west. LA 1 north to I-10 or US 190 is another good option.

Post Merge: June 04, 2012, 06:06:25 AM

Maybe it's time to implement evacuation by parish. I-49 South is going to be sending in so much traffic from the southern parts of the state into the CCC.

Highly unlikely. If a storm is approaching New Orleans or Acadiana, I doubt DOTD and state police will allow traffic to go into New Orleans/Jefferson Parish to evacuate. They would implement contraflow to Lafayette, with the contraflow lanes going to Lake Charles and normal westbound lanes going to Alexandria.
« Last Edit: June 04, 2012, 06:06:25 AM by rickmastfan67 »
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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #251 on: June 02, 2012, 02:38:10 AM »

New I-49 Shreveport to Arkansas article with pictures and video from the air of the construction progress
http://www.shreveporttimes.com/article/20120531/NEWS01/205310311/I-49-construction-moving-along
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Grzrd

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Shreveport I-49 Inner City Connector Website
« Reply #252 on: June 02, 2012, 09:42:03 PM »

It had been a while since I checked the Shreveport ICC website, but it looks like it has been revitalized by the transition from Stage 0 to Stage 1. It now has has an interactive map which shows the businesses, churches, etc. that will potentially be affected by the ICC.  Also, it has an April 2012 Newsletter, which is the first newsletter since June 2010.  In addition, page 4/4 of the April 2012 Newsletter pdf has a good map which shows the locations of two possible interchanges between I-20 and I-220.

It should be interesting to follow the communication efforts with the local community to see if they will keep the necessary support to build this project.  I wonder if outside anti-intown-freeway groups will begin participating in this process?
« Last Edit: June 05, 2012, 09:17:49 AM by Grzrd »
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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #253 on: June 03, 2012, 10:27:02 AM »

New I-49 Shreveport to Arkansas article with pictures and video from the air of the construction progress
http://www.shreveporttimes.com/article/20120531/NEWS01/205310311/I-49-construction-moving-along

Let's hope AHTD picks up the pace a bit...or a LOT.
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Grzrd

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #254 on: June 03, 2012, 09:02:04 PM »

This article includes a 16 min. 24 sec. video of construction from LA 1 to the Arkansas state line, and a photo gallery with twenty photos of construction ....:
Quote
Segment J: The portion between Martin Luther King Boulevard and La. 1 is scheduled to be out for bids this fall and expected to cost $50 million to $70 million.
Let's hope AHTD picks up the pace a bit...or a LOT.

LaDOTD is continuing ITS relatively torrid pace by tentatively scheduling Segment J for a November 14 letting:

Quote
Parish-Caddo
Letting Date-2012-11-14
Project-H.003496 455-09-0002
Route-I-49
Project Name- I-49 North (Mlk Jr Dr-la 1) Seg J

LA. shows you can work on Bridges and the paving at the same time. It is a shame AR. can't do the same and finish there last 4 miles so they could both open up I49 from LA 1 to Texarkana in the spring of 2013.

The Segment J project apparently includes both grading and paving:

Quote
Type Improvement-Conc. New Pavement (Seg J)
Estimated Cost Range-$30,000,000 to $50,000,000
Length(miles)-4.09
Project Manager-Umeozulu, Joe
« Last Edit: June 22, 2012, 09:51:25 AM by Grzrd »
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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #255 on: June 03, 2012, 09:46:40 PM »

If it was in Little Rock there would be a paving contract letting. Look at the AHTD Home site and at the I430,I630 interchange and also the Broadway Bridge.They even gave a change order for 10 million for the interchange. We need two Highway departments for Arkansas: Little Rock and the rest of the state.
« Last Edit: June 04, 2012, 12:54:49 PM by US71 »
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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #256 on: June 05, 2012, 02:38:24 AM »

New I-49 Shreveport to Arkansas article with pictures and video from the air of the construction progress
http://www.shreveporttimes.com/article/20120531/NEWS01/205310311/I-49-construction-moving-along
I'll be so glad when this project is finished! Louisiana is really on the ball. Get it together Arkansas.
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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #257 on: June 05, 2012, 09:15:11 AM »

I will be glad when I-49 North is done. They can get to the real I-49 problem in Louisiana. Yes that slow, slow, slow slog called I-49 south. After my Watkins lights in KC the I-49 south project is the most important in the US. Yes a real Interstate to help the Cajuns and Nawlins folks out of Hurricanes paths.
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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #258 on: June 05, 2012, 12:17:15 PM »

I will be glad when I-49 North is done. They can get to the real I-49 problem in Louisiana. Yes that slow, slow, slow slog called I-49 south. After my Watkins lights in KC the I-49 south project is the most important in the US. Yes a real Interstate to help the Cajuns and Nawlins folks out of Hurricanes paths.

I-49 north will be completed and signed by December.  The parts from north of Shreveport to Doddridge should be open in the next few years.  The Bella Vista bypass should be done within 10 years.  It's the part between Texarkana and Alma that we're going to be waiting for for a while.  I'm 38, and I don't expect to see I-49 completed in my lifetime.
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mcdonaat

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #259 on: June 05, 2012, 05:14:51 PM »

I will be glad when I-49 North is done. They can get to the real I-49 problem in Louisiana. Yes that slow, slow, slow slog called I-49 south. After my Watkins lights in KC the I-49 south project is the most important in the US. Yes a real Interstate to help the Cajuns and Nawlins folks out of Hurricanes paths.
From the people that I have talked to, including those working at the DOTD on the I-49 South project, the documents are referred to as I-49 South, but everyone calls it the US 90 Corridor project. I think upgrading US 90 is needed, but an Interstate designation isn't required. People are too scared of the fact that I-49 will be signed as North 49 - Houma, Westwego on the BGS, but will actually be facing south. You have a major N-S Interstate, but it's going E-W for 200 or so miles. Why not I-6? :P

Anthony_JK

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #260 on: June 05, 2012, 06:17:01 PM »

I will be glad when I-49 North is done. They can get to the real I-49 problem in Louisiana. Yes that slow, slow, slow slog called I-49 south. After my Watkins lights in KC the I-49 south project is the most important in the US. Yes a real Interstate to help the Cajuns and Nawlins folks out of Hurricanes paths.
From the people that I have talked to, including those working at the DOTD on the I-49 South project, the documents are referred to as I-49 South, but everyone calls it the US 90 Corridor project. I think upgrading US 90 is needed, but an Interstate designation isn't required. People are too scared of the fact that I-49 will be signed as North 49 - Houma, Westwego on the BGS, but will actually be facing south. You have a major N-S Interstate, but it's going E-W for 200 or so miles. Why not I-6? :P

The reason most people refer to I-49 South as the US 90 corridor project is because it consists almost entirely of upgrading the US 90 corridor, and it would be a logical extension of I-49.

Also, since the bulk of I-49 will be facing northwards when the extension is built, I really don't think that regular travellers will be confused by the cardinal directions. Just as people in the extended I-64 in St. Louis will still refer to US 40, most travellers on I-49 South will still reference US 90 in the same way.  I don't see the problem that you see.
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mcdonaat

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #261 on: June 05, 2012, 07:31:50 PM »

The problem that I see is that you would have a N-S highway starting off in the opposite direction, you would have to resign the exit numbers north of I-10 to new numbers, and a logical extension is not needed. I doubt that it would be faster to get to the Port of New Orleans via I-49 South versus I-10 through Baton Rouge if I-10 is widened. These days, if someone is trying to get to a point south of New Orleans, a GPS will most likely send someone via US 90 when it's upgraded. I think that once US 167/90 is upgraded through Lafayette, and the freeway is complete, an Alternate I-10 banner could be given. The following quote shows some, if not a large percentage, of the sentiment towards signing US 90 as I-49.

Quote
If sanity prevails, the request to the Federal Highway Administration for proposed I-49 south from Lafayette to New Orleans to become I-49 should be rejected and the route should remain US 90.  The principal purpose for I-49 south was to slake the thirst of the screamers from Lafayette that have been referring to the unimproved segments of US 90 “Blood Alley.”  The freeway upgrade will work just as well as US 90 as it will as I-49.  The only advantage of an interstate designation is direct access to unique interstate programs and there may be a small advantage in the federal funds prorated to Louisiana.  If mild insanity prevails an interstate route number other than I-49 will be approved and established according to national policies and the related principles.
-Mr. Jim Porter, DOTD Planning Support Engineer

However, if it's an east-west Interstate you want, why not name it I-6? It's between I-4 and I-6 geographically...

Anthony_JK

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #262 on: June 05, 2012, 09:36:31 PM »

First of all, Mr. Porter should understand that I-49 South is a joint effort of many states to create a New Orleans-to-Kansas City freeway corridor. The majority of that corridor has already been assigned or signed as I-49. What's wrong with continuity??

Secondly, US 90 does NOT connect with I-10 or currently existing I-49 directly in Lafayette, but uses the Evangeline Thruway (US 167) as the connection. How would he sign the proposed I-49 Connector, then, if it can't be I-49?? And, if he moves US 90 and US 167 to the upgraded freeway, then what happens to the existing Evangeline Thruway??

Third...the proposed I-49 South would bypass US 90 mostly between Des Alemands and Boutte, and would use the unfinished Westbank Expressway to New Orleans. How would Mr. Porter sign those segments??

Finally, it's not the FHWA's call anyway, since the corridor is legislatively set as I-49 as a High Priority Corridor (#37) by Congress. I-6 would be viable only if the Lafayette Metro Expressway loop is built on its westerly/southwesterly quadrant between US 90 and I-10.

Resigning and renumbering exits is not an impossible task, and the improved access will more than justify it.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2012, 11:49:37 PM by Anthony_JK »
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mcdonaat

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #263 on: June 05, 2012, 11:29:56 PM »

First of all, Mr. Porter should understand that I-49 South is a joint effort of many states to create a New Orleans-to-Kansas City freeway corridor. The majority of that corridor has already been assigned or signed as I-49. What's wrong with continuity??

Secondly, US 90 does NOT connect with I-10 or I-49 directly in Lafayette, but uses the Evangeline Thruway (US 167) as the connection. How would he sign the proposed I-49 Connector, then, if it can't be US 90??

Third...the proposed I-49 South would bypass US 90 mostly between Des Alemands and Boutte, and would use the unfinished Westbank Expressway to New Orleans. How would Mr. Porter sign those segments??

Finally, it's not the FHWA's call anyway, since the corridor is legislatively set as I-49 as a High Priority Corridor (#37) by Congress. I-6 would be viable only if the Lafayette Metro Expressway loop is built on its westerly/southwesterly quadrant between US 90 and I-10.

Resigning and renumbering exits is not an impossible task, and the improved access will more than justify it.
It might be a joint task between states to connect Kansas City to New Orleans, but if it was, other states would be pressing their own segments more... look at Future I-49 north of Texarkana for an example.

The way around that would be to sign the Evangeline Thruway as TO US 90. The signage could stay the same, in fact... and if it does take less time between Lafayette and New Orleans via US 90 than I-10, then sign put a smaller sign saying to use US 90 as the route instead of I-10. I-49 in Alexandria has the same thing, where traffic to Monroe is directed along US 167 instead of US 165.

You would simply sign it as US 90 and the older road as LA 182, or US 90 Business through Des Allemands. US 90 through Boutte would be signed as a 3XXX state highway, or sign the newer road as US 90 Business.

From the looks of the High Priority Corridor, it is designated as US 90, not I-49. I just think that the people in South Louisiana want an Interstate number. Maybe even sign a bypass of Lafayette as I-410 or I-249.

Just the idea of an Interstate hooking around to meet an interstate a second time seems weird... We have Bypass routes, Truck routes, and Alternate routes at our disposal. I'll probably see the Baton Rouge Loop built and HOV lanes in New Orleans and Baton Rouge before the US 90 corridor is designated as I-49!

By the way, I remember seeing some giant radio tower right in the middle of the grassy median on US 90 between Lafayette and Baldwin... any word on if it's gonna be moved? I never go that way anymore... it's all basin bridge and US 190 for me!

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #264 on: June 06, 2012, 12:15:15 AM »

Once again, you miss my point.

Evangeline Thruway (at least, the ground level portion) is already signed as US 90 south of Cameron St./Mudd Ave. It is signed as US 167 from the current southern end of I-49 (remember that I-49 overlaid US 167 to Opelousas, and then extends US 167 to Exit 23 near Nuba) to Johnston St. There is an overlap between Mudd Ave. and Johnston St.

If the freeway portion of the I-49 Connector is built, what name would you designate it?? You simply can't say "TO US 90/I-49" because it still would require a designated number. You could designate it the same way as Evangeline Thruway is currently, but then what would you do with the surface portion?? LA 182 is out, because it has its own route (University Avenue/Pinhook Road), and AASHTO policy is not to return US highways onto their former routes anyway.

Just because some portions of US 90 are complete and up to freeway standards doesn't mean that the unfinished portions can be neglected...and unless Louisiana plans to fully fund the entirity of upgrading the rest of US 90 and the I-49 Connector, it's mostly going to be Federal money used to complete the project. Typically, that means an Interstate designation...and since the Evangeline Thruway/US 90 corridor is a seamless extension of existing I-49, why waste continunity by requiring a different route number??  And NO, a 3di is not an option here...otherwise, I-12 or I-10 between Baton Rouge and NOLA/Slidell would have earned a similar designation.

An "I-6" or "I-4" would solve a lot of the "wrong way" concerns...but it would only be compatible if there was an outer freeway/tollway loop from I-10 near Scott to US 90 between Broussard and New Iberia which carried such a designation; then you could have a shorter I-49 extension that didn't violate the "wrong way" status. (The same would be true if you switched I-10 to run this combined corridor, as froggie's old "Louisiana Shuffle" would have proposed.) I-10's not going to be switched anytime soon, though, and the LMX is right now DOA, so you have to fight with the road you have...and right now, even with the "wrong way" sections in NOLA, "I-49" makes the most sense. I really don't think the regulars who travel on that road once it is upgraded will give a rats behind about "going south on I-49 to go north", since they are used to that already.

And, once again, AASHTO/FHWA rules disallow moving US routes off of their main routes and returning them to their old routes..so you can't recreate LA 182. Besides, LA 182 is its own roadway between Raceland and Morgan City, anyway.

Why Arkansas is so slow with developing their segments of I-49 is their problem, not mine. I want I-49 South built in my lifetime..and it's probably more important than any of the other routes, anyway.
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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #265 on: June 06, 2012, 12:34:22 AM »

I could see a beltway being built around Lafayette under the auspices of hurricane evacuation. Name it I-410 or I-810, since both ends will connect to I-10. What you would have is an Interstate, with federal funding. You could simply take I-49 South (make it a short route from I-10 through Lafayette to the beltway I-810) and create a messy interchange at Willow Street. Then you pull a Woodall Rodgers-type Interstate and have it buried twenty feet under... sounds crazy, but Lafayette isn't New Orleans. That way, surface streets stay intact, the current Thruway can still exist as frontage roads, and you have a true connector. Plus, all that dirt can be used to build the beltway! The only problem is the stretch near the airport.. Kaliste Saloom might have to be changed to a small trumpet-style interchange, but you gotta give and take. That's my newly-updated idea for south Louisiana.

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #266 on: June 06, 2012, 04:04:55 AM »

Why not just have the signage change to east-west at some point south of Lafayette? It's not like it's the first time we've had an Interstate do that (I-69 changes from N-S to E-W in Michigan.)
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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #267 on: June 06, 2012, 04:11:03 AM »

By the way, I remember seeing some giant radio tower right in the middle of the grassy median on US 90 between Lafayette and Baldwin... any word on if it's gonna be moved? I never go that way anymore... it's all basin bridge and US 190 for me!

The tower has been relocated, the overpass construction completed and opened last year.
http://goo.gl/maps/2Va2
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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #268 on: June 06, 2012, 07:45:29 AM »

Finally, it's not the FHWA's call anyway, since the corridor is legislatively set as I-49 as a High Priority Corridor (#37) by Congress.
Are you sure? All I can find is that it's "designated as future parts of the Interstate System" along with some other corridors. Others have numbers assigned, but I don't see one for Corridor 37.
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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #269 on: June 06, 2012, 01:23:54 PM »

The way around that would be to sign the Evangeline Thruway as TO US 90. The signage could stay the same, in fact... and if it does take less time between Lafayette and New Orleans via US 90 than I-10, then sign put a smaller sign saying to use US 90 as the route instead of I-10. I-49 in Alexandria has the same thing, where traffic to Monroe is directed along US 167 instead of US 165.

Going to to New Orleans via Morgan City vs via Baton Rouge would probably add only 30 minutes. Besides the need for branding (to encourage "economic development/growth"), I don't see why it can't just be left as U.S. 90. Just drag it to the Huey P. and put the 910 shields up on the WB Expwy after finishing it through Westwego.

Quote
From the looks of the High Priority Corridor, it is designated as US 90, not I-49. I just think that the people in South Louisiana want an Interstate number. Maybe even sign a bypass of Lafayette as I-410 or I-249.

They don't care, they just want something built.

Quote
Just the idea of an Interstate hooking around to meet an interstate a second time seems weird... We have Bypass routes, Truck routes, and Alternate routes at our disposal. I'll probably see the Baton Rouge Loop built and HOV lanes in New Orleans and Baton Rouge before the US 90 corridor is designated as I-49!

New Orleans already has HOV lanes and I think the that the Baton Rouge loop idea will be impacted by the outcome of the CCC toll extension vote in November.
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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #270 on: June 07, 2012, 03:29:28 AM »

I'd take the guaranteed 30 minutes extra over the uncertainty of the I-10 corridor in Baton Rouge. My solution would be to build a loop around BR, to the south roughly paralleling the Burbank corridor, but force ALL truck traffic that is traveling to N.O. onto the highway... And make it four lanes for truck traffic, grade-separated from the rest of the loop.

Per HOV lanes, I meant adding elevated HOV on mainline I-10 and I-610. I could see the US 90 corridor left as US 90, older alignments given La 19X as a number other than La 191 or 190, and the new US 90 act as a 70 MPH freeway, with bumps to 75 through farmland and rural stretches. But with the freeway, also have a designated and marked Old Spanish Trail, cosigned with La 182, encouraging travelers to pull off and visit the towns.

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #271 on: June 07, 2012, 09:57:09 AM »

I think Lafyette needs both a bypass and a straight thru I-49. Since I have old Navy buddies from Acadia. I pronounce myself a self appointed Cajun.
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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #272 on: June 08, 2012, 01:56:55 AM »

I think Lafyette needs both a bypass and a straight thru I-49. Since I have old Navy buddies from Acadia. I pronounce myself a self appointed Cajun.

Dude, if those buddies of yours found out that you kept mispronouncing the name of their home region (it's still ACADIANA), they might want a word with you out back. :D
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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #273 on: June 08, 2012, 02:06:18 AM »

I could see a beltway being built around Lafayette under the auspices of hurricane evacuation. Name it I-410 or I-810, since both ends will connect to I-10. What you would have is an Interstate, with federal funding. You could simply take I-49 South (make it a short route from I-10 through Lafayette to the beltway I-810) and create a messy interchange at Willow Street. Then you pull a Woodall Rodgers-type Interstate and have it buried twenty feet under... sounds crazy, but Lafayette isn't New Orleans. That way, surface streets stay intact, the current Thruway can still exist as frontage roads, and you have a true connector. Plus, all that dirt can be used to build the beltway! The only problem is the stretch near the airport.. Kaliste Saloom might have to be changed to a small trumpet-style interchange, but you gotta give and take. That's my newly-updated idea for south Louisiana.

Depressing the I-49 Connector below ground was one of the options seriously considered in the enviromental process, but it was ultimately rejected because of hydraulic issues, and because of the centrality of I-49 being a hurricane evac route.

Kaliste Saloom Road can't be a trumpet interchange due to the proximity of both the airport  runway, which limits ROW and airspace immediately east of the US 90 corridor, and the presence of the UP/BNSF railroad line that parallels US 90 southeast to Broussard. Plus, a directional interchange as is proposed fits well with both the mainline and the parallel access roads that will carry local traffic and access the major cross streets.

The principal reason why they chose a fully elevated alignment was due to it allowing for full accessibility through keeping major cross streets open. A depressed or "cut-and-cover" option, while better than an at-grade option, would still sever some major cross streets, plus it would have made it less feasible to provide direct access to the adjacent downtown area and the CBD.
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I-49 South Studies Progressing
« Reply #274 on: June 12, 2012, 08:16:32 AM »

This article indicates that at least three major studies are progressing: (1) LaDOTD's study of tolling all of I-49 South, (2) the Lafayette Metropolitan Expressway Commission's study of tolling a shorter section of I-49 South in the Lafayette area, and (3) LaDOTD's study of how to lower the projected cost of the Raceland to Westbank Expressway section:

Quote
The state Department of Transportation and Development will issue a report by year’s end on using tolls to help pay for the completion of Interstate 49 south from Lafayette to New Orleans .... “It’s another funding tool for consideration and public discussion,” DOTD Deputy Secretary Eric Kalivoda said .... The DOTD study comes as the Lafayette Metropolitan Expressway Commission is researching the toll option. The Expressway Commission has taken the local lead in the search for I-49 funding.
The group has not looked at using tolls for the entire I-49 south project but instead has studied two shorter options: an 18-mile stretch from Lafayette going south and a 37-mile stretch from Lafayette through Iberia Parish.
The cost for those segments would range from $1 billion to $1.4 billion.
In a preliminary report last year, consultants hired by the Expressway Commission said tolls of 16 cents per mile for passenger vehicles could cover about half the cost for the 18-mile or 37-mile options, bringing the projects into the realm of feasibility .... DOTD estimated $5 billion worth of work remains, with most of that tied to the estimated $1.1 billion to build the partially elevated section through Lafayette and the estimated $3.7 billion for the 36-mile southern stretch from Raceland to the Westbank Expressway in Jefferson Parish.
There are few options for trimming the costs of the section through Lafayette, Kalivoda said, but DOTD is revisiting the plans for the stretch south of Raceland to determine if all of that portion needs to elevated.
Existing plans call for that section to be raised because of flooding concerns.
“It’s desirable, but it may not be essential that it is elevated,”
he said.

In order for tolls to be implemented, LaDOTD would need to see strong local support for tolls:

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For tolls to be seriously considered as an option for I-49 south, he said, DOTD would want to see strong local support. .... The idea of tolls has attracted opposition, most vocally from state Rep. Sam Jones, D-Franklin.
Jones said he felt slighted that I-49 north was built through Shreveport without tolls but there seems to be no sense of urgency to find state and federal money to complete I-49 south.
“When is it time for us to be a priority?” Jones said.
« Last Edit: June 12, 2012, 11:15:00 AM by Grzrd »
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