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Author Topic: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world  (Read 106182 times)

Chris

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Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« on: April 23, 2009, 12:02:55 PM »

Ontario traffic volumes 2005

Busiest:

Quote
401 HWY400 IC 359 -N.YORK WESTON RD IC 357 -N.YORK: AADT 426,400

Satellite picture of this section:


I wonder how long it's gonna take before some Phoenix, Houston or Atlanta freeway is gonna overtake the 401 to be the busiest in the world. The busiest freeway in the United States is the I-405 near Seal Beach, California with 397,000 vehicles per day.

un1

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2009, 01:42:40 PM »

Yep, though the traffic is going down, it was 600,000 a few years ago.
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Thunder Bay Expressway - Highway 61 and 11/17 Ontario - Thunder Bay, Ontario

Chris

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2009, 01:55:06 PM »

600,000 are you sure?

A simple traffic engineering fact says that you can multiply the number of lanes (16) by 2200 vehicles per hour by 10 - 12 hours (depending on situation), which would give a maximum capacity of about 16*2200*12 = 422,000 vehicles per day.

So 600,000 seems a bit unlikely to me. Do you have a source?

un1

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2009, 02:10:37 PM »

I believe it was the 2002 AADT, but I will double check, if I can find it...
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Thunder Bay Expressway - Highway 61 and 11/17 Ontario - Thunder Bay, Ontario

haljackey

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #4 on: April 23, 2009, 09:01:13 PM »

Perhaps 600k was the highest recorded traffic flow in one day.

Seriously, the 401 in the summertime is madness!  Commuters, JIT inventory trucking routes, and a recreational route all in one!  I was stuck at the 400 interchange one day for over 2 hours on my way to Canada's Wonderland (a theme park in the region).  Amazingly busy road!

Doesn't help that its the only "true" east-west highway in Toronto.  (Gardiner ends at DVP, 407 outside city limits.)

Yep, the 401's a monster.  The 407 was supposed to help take some traffic off it, but with high tolls to use the 407 and exceptional growth in the region, the 401 remains the busiest highway in North America, perhaps the world.

Here's a pic of one of the busiest sections of the highway:


Crazy interchanges too!
« Last Edit: April 23, 2009, 09:10:16 PM by haljackey »
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vdeane

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #5 on: April 24, 2009, 02:11:57 PM »

401 is certainly a highway of extremes - perhaps the busiest in the world in Toronto, but just 300 km to the east it's your typical rural freeway.  And the speed limit's the same!
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haljackey

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #6 on: April 28, 2009, 01:08:53 PM »

Yep its so extreme they not only rely on CCTV cameras for info, the highway even has its own traffic simulator!

Here's an example of simulating traffic patterns compared to CCTV feed:


Interesting eh?
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Bryant5493

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #7 on: April 28, 2009, 11:35:34 PM »

Going to have to ride on the 401 one day.


Be well,

Bryant
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Chris

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #8 on: April 29, 2009, 04:51:27 AM »

Bryant5493

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #9 on: April 29, 2009, 10:11:07 AM »

^^ Touché. :-D

Let me re-phrase. One day, I hope to ride on the 401 in Toronto, Ontario.


Be well,

Bryant
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Sykotyk

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #10 on: May 01, 2009, 10:44:46 PM »

I drove on the 401, but, oddly enough, never the 'busy' stretch. I've gone in from Sarnia to the QEW and down along the SkyDome, and then back to the 401 on my way to Montreal.

Ontario's freeways are fun to drive. Once the Autoroutes in Quebec get a little more connectivity (and that gap on the A20 is removed) will make for a nice drive from Windsor or Sarnia to Quebec City.

Sykotyk
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Truvelo

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #11 on: June 13, 2009, 02:44:58 PM »

I've just come back from Ontario which involved using part of the 401.

These pictures were taken at around 3pm and the traffic was stationary in places. The VMS signs are amusing though, such as the ones about idling and keeping your distance.




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Hellfighter

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #12 on: June 13, 2009, 08:03:16 PM »

Why are there both blue and green signs?
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Alps

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #13 on: June 13, 2009, 08:24:34 PM »

Why are there both blue and green signs?
Blue = C/D road, green = main freeway

Hellfighter

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #14 on: June 13, 2009, 09:30:49 PM »

Why are there both blue and green signs?
Blue = C/D road, green = main freeway

Oh, so like the blue signs are for the local lanes and the green signs are for the express lanes?
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Bickendan

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #15 on: June 29, 2009, 07:37:46 PM »

Exactly.
The 401 is one fun freeway to drive.
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mightyace

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #16 on: June 29, 2009, 07:40:39 PM »

Exactly.
The 401 is one fun freeway to drive.

To each his own, I drove the 401 once in 1994 and that was enough for me.  I'll take a rural freeway with great scenery any day.
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haljackey

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #17 on: August 16, 2009, 01:12:55 PM »

This is a rare sight:


IMG WIDTH=800.  NOT 1024.  PLEASE GET IT RIGHT! <- your friendly but incessant moderator

Full size:  http://img220.imageshack.us/img220/3581/evacuatedhighway401.jpg
« Last Edit: December 14, 2009, 07:51:06 AM by AlpsROADS »
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agentsteel53

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #18 on: August 16, 2009, 07:31:15 PM »

who's the schmuck?  clearly an SUV driver!
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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #19 on: August 16, 2009, 10:22:01 PM »

^^Kind of reminds me of the streets of Pyongyang (and North Korea in general). There are empty streets and freeways because most people don't/aren't allowed to own cars.
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Hellfighter

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #20 on: August 17, 2009, 07:36:42 PM »

Uhh, who told everybody they can't drive?  :-o
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Bickendan

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #21 on: August 18, 2009, 02:04:04 AM »

Yeah, that's just a little bit bizarre... OTOH, empty freeway, one lone SUV in the local lanes... shot for an apocalyptic movie, perhaps?
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mightyace

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #22 on: August 18, 2009, 11:50:06 AM »

Or maybe, one hell of an impressive Photoshop job!  :-D
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yanksfan6129

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #23 on: August 18, 2009, 08:22:39 PM »

I'm pretty sure that was from a time when the highway was evacuated after an accident.
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Bickendan

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Re: Highway 401 in Ontario - busiest freeway in the world
« Reply #24 on: August 18, 2009, 10:24:13 PM »

Possibly the plane crash near the freeway a few years back?
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