spenser1058

Central FL Roads and Highways

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26 minutes ago, spenser1058 said:

How is it a puff piece? It’s an ask the editor type of article. You should only expect the answer to the question with a few quotes and additional/contextual information. I found some of the content, such as Winter Parks history with brick roads, to be interesting.

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14 minutes ago, WAJAS98 said:

How is it a puff piece? It’s an ask the editor type of article. You should only expect the answer to the question with a few quotes and additional/contextual information. I found some of the content, such as Winter Parks history with brick roads, to be interesting.

I've had to deal with brick streets downtown for decades and know how much better quality they once were before the "Glenda-scraper" came along in the '90s. That machine just tore the asphalt off of the underlying brick and no effort was made to stabilize the brick that was often several decades old and badly needed some TLC. 

I also loved how he mentioned how much the road budget increased from 10 years ago. Sure it did. 10 years ago was the crash and the road budget, which had been ignored for much of Buddy's administration, was totally ripped to shreds to shore up the budget. This administration eviscerated several departments early on to pay for other priorities and when things went south, the reserves were shot.

Dale often mentions how great Orlando roads are. They really used to be but brick streets are not cheap to maintain and increasing the number you have to care for doesn't help.

My biggest complaint is that I came up with at least five questions that immediately came to mind that went unanswered. I understand space limitations but this is too important an issue to basically call a couple of city employees and assume if you print their responses, everything's hunky-dory.

For example, a drive down these streets and their insta-potholes mean a lot more maintenance for vehicle owners. Some streets were originally covered for a reason - all the school buses at Howard and the construction vehicles make the brick streets fall apart (Mariposa was a wonderful brick street done right and now it's being destroyed to build 520. Will it be repaired to the same pristine condition? Previous experience suggests not.) Bricks also cause more rolling resistance and, as any train engineer can tell you, the reason trains are economical relative to trucks is due in no small part to rolling on smooth rails. Asphalt has that quality as well relative to rough bricks.

Anyway, as a longtime resident of downtown resident with a love-hate relationship with our streets (and the fact they're in the worst shape overall I remember in almost 45 years of driving on them), I felt like I was reading the  sanitized version. I was trying to keep it short by expressing my displeasure briefly, but since you asked out goes the Reader's Digest version. We should do better on our streets and that piece really skated over several issues.

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On the balance - allowing for construction on I-4, 528, et.al., Orlando road and highway conditions are the best I've experienced. And I have a sample size of most major US cities. Ex: not exaggerating, LA is third world by comparison.

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Agreed. By a pretty sizable margin, Florida’s roads are in incredible shape compared to other states, especially large states like California (Southern California has ATROCIOUS roads), NY, many parts of Texas, Ohio, etc. I don’t know if it’s because Florida is “newer” by comparison or what, but most of the cities I’ve been to in Florida have superb roads and highways.

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Watch out for access to Princeton St EB on I4 to shift back almost two miles near the Colonial Drive exit today:

https://m.orlandoweekly.com/Blogs/archives/2018/09/21/brace-yourself-the-princeton-street-exit-on-i-4-is-about-to-get-weird

From Orlando Weekly

Of course, we may expect Orlando drivers (most of whom are from elsewhere, let's point out) to make a complete hash of it and cross multiple lanes of traffic at the last minute with lots of resulting disasters.

Edited by spenser1058
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I noticed this morning that the "ORLANDO" sign on the Conroy Rd overpass along eastbound I4 has gone rainbow. Don't know if this is just for PRIDE month (the rainbow flags are also up at Eola) or a permanent change, but it looks way cool.

Also, I'm loving the resurfaced Anderson St. east of Magnolia. It's so rare to have a smooth surface to drive on downtown anymore - LIKE BUTTAH.

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On ‎10‎/‎8‎/‎2018 at 8:29 AM, spenser1058 said:

I noticed this morning that the "ORLANDO" sign on the Conroy Rd overpass along eastbound I4 has gone rainbow. Don't know if this is just for PRIDE month (the rainbow flags are also up at Eola) or a permanent change, but it looks way cool.

Also, I'm loving the resurfaced Anderson St. east of Magnolia. It's so rare to have a smooth surface to drive on downtown anymore - LIKE BUTTAH.

I remember them replacing the sign about a year or two ago with the color changing LED's.  It's probably for Pride month.

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Well, it may be terribly obsolete but the loop ramp from westbound Colonial Dr to westbound I4 over Lake Concord has always been visually appealing.

Now, it's succumbing to the I4 Ultimate project as soon as Monday. That will require drivers to make a left turn on Hughey to reach I4 West. No doubt that's going to be fun during the rush hour.

Orlando ramp from Colonial Drive to Interstate 4 over Lake Concord closes soon
http://bit.ly/2ywLHdC

From the Sentinel

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On 9/8/2018 at 11:34 AM, spenser1058 said:

Widening is underway (at long last) along the Greeneway (FL 417) near the University Blvd. toll Plaza:


http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/transportation/traffic/os-sr417-construction-ucf-area-20180907-story.html

From the Sentinel

 

I believe they made this into dual protected lefts so they could increase the volume of left turning traffic.   Obviously, a free flow ramp would make things go quicker, but that loop had to go.   I will add, noone seems to be talking about the ramp that was supposed to open to traffic going eastbound that never opened to traffic and now has strain tools on it.   They were forced to rebrace the bridge, and its been sitting being tested ever since.

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Why walkable cities are good for the economy, according to a city planner

People spend more money when cities are less vehicle-oriented.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

https://www.vox.com/the-goods/2018/10/26/18025000/walkable-city-walk-score-economy

Orlando is going the opposite way.

 

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As someone who deals with this equipment on a daily basis, I find some of the photos a stretch as being art, but to each is own.  That said we're entering the phase of construction where MOT will be moving most of the project on the new lanes.  From this point on you're going to see a lot more of the new I-4 and less of he relic that was there before.   Case it point, any semblance of the old Kirkman, Turnpike and Maitland Interchanges are almost long gone.

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I know we had a thread somewhere for potential new parks downtown but I can't seem to find it.  @spenser1058  also posted an article above on the closing of the old Colonial Cloverleaf ramp on I-4. 

I wanted to ask @codypet or some other civil guy if they think it would be possible for the City/FDOT to make a park out of the area where they are changing the ramp out. 

From the drawing, it looks like they are putting a swale in on the north side of Colonial in that area to offset the new pavement, but it seems like a waste as designed. Could they perhaps reconfigure it to make a small pocket park type area with a view of lake Concord?  The ramp had some swampish runoff area under it, but seems like it could be redone for something cool in the area next to the OUT pedestrian ramp and close to Creative Village.  I thought it was a cool idea for a park close to downtown/trails/CV/uptown for a consideration. Maybe a little lookout or something over the lake with a walking path if the space is just going to sit there.  No parking needed or anything, can just walk there with the adjacency to the OUT and nearby apartments/hotels. Could put a pavilion and a bike-rack or something. 

Here's the plan:
911195082_ColonialConcordSwale.thumb.jpg.3df7b603187cebabf2074a75f9d82325.jpg


Here's the aerial:
2079573665_ConcordLakeAerial.thumb.jpg.610cd2a253a82a8949c9ba4e145d5a4e.jpg


Here's the view from the old ramp:
1486468274_ConcordLakeRampView.thumb.jpg.39578941b2999e845d83807a821c9b40.jpg

Edited by dcluley98
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I think it would be great to have some type of development there instead of the pond.  The pond could certainly be re-designed to at least allow some townhomes facing Colonial with garages in the rear.  Connecting the west part of Colonial Drive to the North Quarter area could really help.  I-4 is already a huge barrier.  It seems like a bad idea to make that barrier wider by putting the pond there.

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I'm going to be honest.  As it relates to pond geometry and requirements from the WMD, I don't know how you make that pond any smaller.   Personally I would have gone with exfiltration trenches but like I said earlier, its likely the groundwater is too high for that.

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