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Author Topic: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?  (Read 67866 times)

noelbotevera

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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #100 on: July 14, 2015, 01:34:58 PM »

Why not a bridge that traced John Wilkes Booth's path from where he escaped Maryland into Virginia? A sneaky shortcut to bypass I-95 north of the Beltway to Tysons Corner Vienna? Basically, Dulles-bound traffic could use this to detour around the Beltway and instead end up in Tysons Corner Vienna just near the Dulles Toll Road.

edit: changed Tysons Corner to Vienna
« Last Edit: July 14, 2015, 01:37:19 PM by noelbotevera »
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cpzilliacus

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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #101 on: July 14, 2015, 02:36:28 PM »

Why not a bridge that traced John Wilkes Booth's path from where he escaped Maryland into Virginia? A sneaky shortcut to bypass I-95 north of the Beltway to Tysons Corner Vienna? Basically, Dulles-bound traffic could use this to detour around the Beltway and instead end up in Tysons Corner Vienna just near the Dulles Toll Road.

edit: changed Tysons Corner to Vienna

Because Booth escaped south from Washington, and crossed the Potomac River in the vicinity of the Gov. Harry Nice Memorial Bridge (U.S. 301) between Charles County, Maryland and King George County, Virginia.
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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #102 on: July 14, 2015, 03:23:30 PM »

Why not a bridge that traced John Wilkes Booth's path from where he escaped Maryland into Virginia?

It would be a toll bridge, so it would have the Booth Bridge Toll Booth.  :D
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cpzilliacus

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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #103 on: July 15, 2015, 01:04:50 PM »

WTOP Radio: Va. to offer toll lanes as fix to Legion Bridge bottleneck

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Virginia transportation officials want to extend the 495 Express Lanes into Maryland to reduce congestion on the American Legion Bridge, a major choke point along the Capital Beltway.

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Preliminary materials made available before Wednesday’s Commonwealth Transportation Board meeting show that Virginia Deputy Secretary of Transportation Nick Donohue will recommend pursuing the extension of the tolled lanes across the bridge and all the way to the Interstate 270 Spur in Montgomery County, Maryland.

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The Commonwealth Transportation Board, which must approve such projects, is expected to be asked to sign off on an effort by Virginia officials to reach out to their counterparts across the Potomac River to determine whether Maryland would support the project.

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Charlie Gischlar, with Maryland’s State Highway Administration, says the agency cannot comment because his agency has not seen any proposals yet. But he says the agency looks forward to hearing from Virginia.

Presentation to the Commonwealth Transportation Board can be found here (.pdf).
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cpzilliacus

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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #104 on: July 17, 2015, 10:14:27 AM »

WTOP Radio: Potential new Potomac crossing pits Maryland against Virginia

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A new way to drive across the Potomac River that avoids the traffic-clogged Beltway has the support of Virginia transportation leaders, even if Maryland says it is not going to happen any time soon.

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The Virginia Department of Transportation floated the idea of extending the I-495 Express Lanes over the Legion Bridge to the Interstate 270 Spur in Maryland at a Commonwealth Transportation Board meeting this week. Deputy Transportation Secretary Nick Donohue said his staff would really prefer to add an entire new crossing miles to the west, connecting Fairfax and Montgomery counties.

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“Tysons Corner is located right off of 495 in central Fairfax, and as the development takes place there, because of the Silver Line investment [and] Beltway HOT Lanes, it’s really anticipated that you’ll have a lot more people commuting from Maryland into Tysons Corner and back,” Donohue said.

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“Our focus, looking at river crossings, is addressing the issues at the American Legion Bridge. It has the worst congestion; it has the largest projected growth into the future,” Donohue told the board.

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But Maryland has said it is not interested in building another crossing, especially into the rural areas of northwestern Montgomery County between the Potomac River and 270.

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Other groups opposed to a new Potomac River crossing argue it would simply create more traffic and draw more cars to areas the plan is intended to help.
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iBallasticwolf2

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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #105 on: July 17, 2015, 10:25:16 AM »

I'd love to see the express lanes extended across the Legion Bridge like these plans say but they could split at I-270 Spur with 1 lane going to I-495 and the other lane going to I-270 Spur. Maybe the I-270 express lane could go up to to existing I-270 express lanes. Maybe also have the I-495 express lane continue to I-270 Proper. That could help out with that area especially by improving the 6 lane segment of the Beltway.
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cpzilliacus

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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #106 on: July 17, 2015, 12:03:22 PM »

I'd love to see the express lanes extended across the Legion Bridge like these plans say but they could split at I-270 Spur with 1 lane going to I-495 and the other lane going to I-270 Spur. Maybe the I-270 express lane could go up to to existing I-270 express lanes. Maybe also have the I-495 express lane continue to I-270 Proper. That could help out with that area especially by improving the 6 lane segment of the Beltway.

Problem with continuing east along I-495 is the lack of space east of Md. 187, the large (and poorly-designed) interchange at Md. 355, I-270 and I-495; and perhaps even more of a problem, the lack of space for added lanes east of Md. 355 (the Beltway from there to the Mormon Temple was built on parkland, sometime that would likely not win approval these days (see this for some details why)).

IMO, better to have two managed lanes continue north along I-270Y and I-270 all the way to Frederick, perhaps with added ramps from those lanes to I-370/Md. 200.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2015, 12:05:31 PM by cpzilliacus »
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ARMOURERERIC

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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #107 on: July 17, 2015, 02:38:31 PM »

How much Richmond to Harrisburg/Frederick traffic still uses the beltway, is it tile to revive the US 17/29/15 freeway proposal from the late 1980's
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cpzilliacus

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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #108 on: July 18, 2015, 09:16:46 AM »

How much Richmond to Harrisburg/Frederick traffic still uses the beltway, is it tile to revive the US 17/29/15 freeway proposal from the late 1980's

Plenty of I-95 traffic that could benefit from an upgrade of the U.S. 301 corridor on the east side. 

To the west, yes there is some traffic that desires that movement (just look at the truck traffic on U.S. 17 between I-95 and U.S. 29 [Opal] for an indication of same). But I am less sure about car traffic.
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74/171FAN

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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #109 on: July 18, 2015, 06:06:37 PM »

How much Richmond to Harrisburg/Frederick traffic still uses the beltway, is it tile to revive the US 17/29/15 freeway proposal from the late 1980's

Plenty of I-95 traffic that could benefit from an upgrade of the U.S. 301 corridor on the east side. 

To the west, yes there is some traffic that desires that movement (just look at the truck traffic on U.S. 17 between I-95 and U.S. 29 [Opal] for an indication of same). But I am less sure about car traffic.


I have been using the US 17 to I-66 to I-81 route to head to Harrisburg lately (so I do not have to worry so much about traffic).    I will also mention that I am used to driving I-81 in Roanoke and the portion from Winchester to Harrisburg is definitely not IMO any more annoying than Christiansburg to Roanoke.
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TheOneKEA

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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #110 on: July 19, 2015, 01:35:51 PM »

How much Richmond to Harrisburg/Frederick traffic still uses the beltway, is it tile to revive the US 17/29/15 freeway proposal from the late 1980's

Plenty of I-95 traffic that could benefit from an upgrade of the U.S. 301 corridor on the east side. 

To the west, yes there is some traffic that desires that movement (just look at the truck traffic on U.S. 17 between I-95 and U.S. 29 [Opal] for an indication of same). But I am less sure about car traffic.

I agree wholeheartedly; at the very least, bypasses of US 301 in Waldorf and La Plata need to be built, and the former needs to have a freeway-grade spur to MD 5 at the triple left turn and another north of the future MD 373 interchange. Those bypasses alone, combined with some other grade separations in Upper Marlboro and the construction of the quad carriage way project in Bowie, would be a HUGE improvement for through traffic along 301.
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bsmart

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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #111 on: July 20, 2015, 10:53:50 AM »

How much Richmond to Harrisburg/Frederick traffic still uses the beltway, is it tile to revive the US 17/29/15 freeway proposal from the late 1980's

Plenty of I-95 traffic that could benefit from an upgrade of the U.S. 301 corridor on the east side. 

To the west, yes there is some traffic that desires that movement (just look at the truck traffic on U.S. 17 between I-95 and U.S. 29 [Opal] for an indication of same). But I am less sure about car traffic.

I agree wholeheartedly; at the very least, bypasses of US 301 in Waldorf and La Plata need to be built, and the former needs to have a freeway-grade spur to MD 5 at the triple left turn and another north of the future MD 373 interchange. Those bypasses alone, combined with some other grade separations in Upper Marlboro and the construction of the quad carriage way project in Bowie, would be a HUGE improvement for through traffic along 301.

What about continuing I-97 south and having it join I-95 near Richmond?  It isn't like we can't use the capacity.

The problem when attempting to discuss an 'outer crossing' for the Potomac is that MD has always favored an eastern bypass and Virginia has always wanted a western bypass
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iBallasticwolf2

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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #112 on: July 20, 2015, 11:14:31 AM »

How much Richmond to Harrisburg/Frederick traffic still uses the beltway, is it tile to revive the US 17/29/15 freeway proposal from the late 1980's

Plenty of I-95 traffic that could benefit from an upgrade of the U.S. 301 corridor on the east side. 

To the west, yes there is some traffic that desires that movement (just look at the truck traffic on U.S. 17 between I-95 and U.S. 29 [Opal] for an indication of same). But I am less sure about car traffic.

I agree wholeheartedly; at the very least, bypasses of US 301 in Waldorf and La Plata need to be built, and the former needs to have a freeway-grade spur to MD 5 at the triple left turn and another north of the future MD 373 interchange. Those bypasses alone, combined with some other grade separations in Upper Marlboro and the construction of the quad carriage way project in Bowie, would be a HUGE improvement for through traffic along 301.

What about continuing I-97 south and having it join I-95 near Richmond?  It isn't like we can't use the capacity.

The problem when attempting to discuss an 'outer crossing' for the Potomac is that MD has always favored an eastern bypass and Virginia has always wanted a western bypass

This is getting OT and into fictional territory but I would love to see I-97 be extended to Norfolk by running concurrent with I-64 from somewhere around Williamsburg to I-664 where I-97 would replace it. It could have a spur (I-197?) go to Richmond.
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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #113 on: July 20, 2015, 02:39:07 PM »

Quote
What about continuing I-97 south and having it join I-95 near Richmond?  It isn't like we can't use the capacity.

The problem when attempting to discuss an 'outer crossing' for the Potomac is that MD has always favored an eastern bypass and Virginia has always wanted a western bypass

Even so, there are plenty of people along the 301 corridor who are opposed to improvements to that corridor as it would induce even more growth than the already-insane development along the corridor that's already happened, especially between Waldorf and La Plata.

Realistically, I think the best one can expect in the next 20 years is a replacement of the Nice Bridge (eliminating that bottleneck) and completing the freeway conversion of MD 5 between the 301 split and the Beltway.  Aside from the Nice Bridge, I highly doubt you'll see any improvements to 301 proper.

Which is both a shame and no big deal.  It's a shame in that it would give long-distance travelers a better alternative to 95.  It's "no big deal" because long-distance travelers are really not a large chunk of I-95 DC-area traffic...you might see a little improvement through NoVA on the weekends, but effectively zero improvement to the weekday slogs through Woodbridge/Dale City, the Wilson Bridge, and Greenbelt.
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bsmart

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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #114 on: July 21, 2015, 09:34:32 AM »

How much Richmond to Harrisburg/Frederick traffic still uses the beltway, is it tile to revive the US 17/29/15 freeway proposal from the late 1980's

I live in the Frederick area and while I take 15 south to 17 when heading down towards Richmond I run into the problem that I still have to join I-95 on the north side of the Rappahanock river at Fredericksburg.  I wish there was a good crossing that would let me avoid that bottleneck
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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #115 on: July 21, 2015, 01:08:53 PM »

^ You could stay on 15/29 to Brandy Station then take SR 669 down to VA 3.  Would avoid the Rappahannock crossing on 95, but then you'd be dealing with the western Fredericksburg sprawl along VA 3.  The sprawl on 3, though, could be avoided by "cutting the corner" and taking SR 613 to Spotsylvania and eventually catching I-95 at Thornburg.  This routing is 7 miles longer than taking 17, but it's almost 20 minutes longer, so unless the delays at the Rappahannock are more than 20 minutes long you're certainly not saving any time.
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cpzilliacus

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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #116 on: July 21, 2015, 01:21:11 PM »

How much Richmond to Harrisburg/Frederick traffic still uses the beltway, is it tile to revive the US 17/29/15 freeway proposal from the late 1980's

I live in the Frederick area and while I take 15 south to 17 when heading down towards Richmond I run into the problem that I still have to join I-95 on the north side of the Rappahanock river at Fredericksburg.  I wish there was a good crossing that would let me avoid that bottleneck

That is a notoriously bad spot, at least in part because of all of the truck traffic that comes south on U.S. 17 from Opal and wants to enter I-95 southbound at the Exit 133 interchange at Falmouth. 
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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #117 on: July 21, 2015, 07:22:07 PM »

Quote
What about continuing I-97 south and having it join I-95 near Richmond?  It isn't like we can't use the capacity.

The problem when attempting to discuss an 'outer crossing' for the Potomac is that MD has always favored an eastern bypass and Virginia has always wanted a western bypass

Even so, there are plenty of people along the 301 corridor who are opposed to improvements to that corridor as it would induce even more growth than the already-insane development along the corridor that's already happened, especially between Waldorf and La Plata.

Realistically, I think the best one can expect in the next 20 years is a replacement of the Nice Bridge (eliminating that bottleneck) and completing the freeway conversion of MD 5 between the 301 split and the Beltway.  Aside from the Nice Bridge, I highly doubt you'll see any improvements to 301 proper.

Which is both a shame and no big deal.  It's a shame in that it would give long-distance travelers a better alternative to 95.  It's "no big deal" because long-distance travelers are really not a large chunk of I-95 DC-area traffic...you might see a little improvement through NoVA on the weekends, but effectively zero improvement to the weekday slogs through Woodbridge/Dale City, the Wilson Bridge, and Greenbelt.

Unfortunately, I agree with you. My only expectation is to see the Nice Bridge replaced and the segment through Bowie reconstructed. Nothing else will happen until/unless there is congestion so horrible that even the locals won't oppose removing it.
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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #118 on: July 21, 2015, 09:14:40 PM »

I could never understand MD's objections to the US 15 upgrade when the ROW already exists.  BTW lived in Brunswick 1988-1991.
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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #119 on: July 22, 2015, 07:29:02 AM »

IIRC, it's moreso northern Loudoun County that objects to US 15 upgrade than Maryland.  They want to keep the road as-is in order to discourage development, and have convinced the county board of supervisors to follow suit.  As long as they get their way, you won't see anything more than spot safety updates north of Leesburg.
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noelbotevera

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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #120 on: July 22, 2015, 09:07:28 AM »

IIRC, it's moreso northern Loudoun County that objects to US 15 upgrade than Maryland.  They want to keep the road as-is in order to discourage development, and have convinced the county board of supervisors to follow suit.  As long as they get their way, you won't see anything more than spot safety updates north of Leesburg.
True, but if Loudoun County does not get their way, this improves connections to Leesburg and Dulles Airport for people in all the way up to Gettysburg. Traffic can flow faster through Loudoun and Fairfax Counties as a bonus too.

There isn't really much development between the US 15/US 340 split and Leesburg (about 15-16 miles). I don't think any development would grow even if US 15 got an upgrade.
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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #121 on: July 22, 2015, 09:51:15 AM »

You really don't understand Northern Virginia, Noel.
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noelbotevera

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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #122 on: July 22, 2015, 09:54:42 AM »

Part of it, but not all of it. I really still don't and do understand Northern Virginia.
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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #123 on: July 22, 2015, 10:48:47 AM »

IIRC, it's moreso northern Loudoun County that objects to US 15 upgrade than Maryland.  They want to keep the road as-is in order to discourage development, and have convinced the county board of supervisors to follow suit.  As long as they get their way, you won't see anything more than spot safety updates north of Leesburg.

Agreed.  U.S. 15 carries heavy, heavy traffic nearly every day between Leesburg and Point of Rocks, but the people living there complain that they have a hard time getting out onto U.S. 15, and I believe they are reporting that accurately. 

Maryland has long touted an upgraded Potomac River crossing at U.S. 15, but I suspect that is with the knowledge that Loudoun County does not want to upgrade the road on their side of the river. The curious thing is that there has been plenty of McMansion development all along that part of U.S. 15 in the past 15 or 20 years, which puts even more traffic on the road.
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74/171FAN

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Re: New crossings of the Potomac River between Md. and Va.?
« Reply #124 on: July 22, 2015, 10:50:42 AM »

IIRC, it's moreso northern Loudoun County that objects to US 15 upgrade than Maryland.  They want to keep the road as-is in order to discourage development, and have convinced the county board of supervisors to follow suit.  As long as they get their way, you won't see anything more than spot safety updates north of Leesburg.

IIRC, it's moreso northern Loudoun County that objects to US 15 upgrade than Maryland.  They want to keep the road as-is in order to discourage development, and have convinced the county board of supervisors to follow suit.  As long as they get their way, you won't see anything more than spot safety updates north of Leesburg.

Agreed.  U.S. 15 carries heavy, heavy traffic nearly every day between Leesburg and Point of Rocks, but the people living there complain that they have a hard time getting out onto U.S. 15, and I believe they are reporting that accurately. 

Maryland has long touted an upgraded Potomac River crossing at U.S. 15, but I suspect that is with the knowledge that Loudoun County does not want to upgrade the road on their side of the river. The curious thing is that there has been plenty of McMansion development all along that part of U.S. 15 in the past 15 or 20 years, which puts even more traffic on the road.

I think that the four-laning of US 340 through the two-lane part just east of Harpers Ferry should be a higher priority (especially since the current Potomac River Bridge has no shoulders).  Of course I have no idea how/when that would get built.
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