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Traffic Congestion and Highway Construction


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Agreed. I think the problem is that was the original intent of "Business 74" and "Bypass 74" -- but local leaders and developers were greedy, so they glued everything they could onto the "Bypass 74" strip. The new bypass essentially takes it out of local hands.

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Some new pics were posted of the I-77 toll project. Also, a newsletter update was posted. Pics: https://www.i77express.com/gallery/i-77-express-construction-works-april-2019/ Newsletter: htt

Assortment of recent I-77 traffic/construction photos via NCDOT 

I meant to mention this the other day last week sometime the new on ramp flyover from 277 to 77 south opened. 

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Yeah, that's the general idea of a bypass.

 

Right... but they are also stating that the purpose is for 'economic development.' By taking all of the 'through' traffic away from the current 74 route, it will result in the gradual economic decay of that route, just like it did for downtown.

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I gotta say, from my own experience, I hated the access road "culture" in Texas. It felt like there was no escaping the freeway. For several weeks I lived literally a 1/4 mile from the office I was temporarily at, but walking was miserable because I was always walking along freeway and access road. The access road system also effectively adds 4+ lanes of width (more commonly 8 lanes add'l) to any given freeway ROW, which makes them that much more of a barrier between neighborhoods, etc.

 

From an urban standpoint, freeways should never, ever, ever be front and center like that, and the entire state of Texas is built that way. 

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At least some of these Texas freeways were built by upgrading arterials. The frontage roads were the only way to maintain access to the businesses. But for a greenfield freeway I agree, frontage roads are not desirable. Development should be focused on the cross streets not the freeways themselves.

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That is awesome!  That means the private company subsidizes our roadway expansion and then doesn't even profit.   For our i77 contract, if Cintra can't make a profit or goes bankrupt, then we get to keep the lanes.   It is unlikely for them to have too many periods of time where they fail to lower to the toll charge to the point that they raise demand and make a profit.    

 

 

As for the distinction made by the top commenter, HOT lanes are intentionally run in the red, as part of a philosophy similar to that of transit.   Transit operates in the red as a social subsidy.   Frankly, I think they should operate fully in the red and have fare-free usage so that society pays for the full costs and then gets the maximum benefits by allowing for the use without a fare.  That being because it either provides transport to the poor and as a an alternative to traditional car on the road which has high costs to society.

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^ its far from an authoritative source but this implies that the Atlanta lanes operate at a deficit and they are unable to keep their promise of 'free flowing traffic' even at $10 tolls. In other words the Atlanta HOT lanes may be money loosers even at max capacity -- whoever did that pro forma needs to be fired yesterday.

http://www.peachpundit.com/2014/12/15/new-top-price-ride-85-hot-lanes/

Edited by kermit
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The issues with the toll lanes in Virginia and Atlanta is the 'end point' of the lanes. In Virginia, the issue is if you're in free-flowing traffic traveling at 65 miles per hour and the traffic next to you is at a stand still, the lanes end. When your two toll lanes have to merge down with no additional capacity to the general purpose lanes, you lose as much time at the end of the system trying to merge as you would if you were to just start in the general purpose lanes.

 

Atlanta's problem is entirely different since there is nothing to separate the lanes from the general lanes but two stripes of paint and a dream that nobody will cross them. If you're in the toll lanes going 65 mph and the traffic to your right is stopped and you have to exit then the rest of the toll lane behind you must slow down with you and hope someone allows you to merge. As you can imagine, anyone trying to enter or exit the lanes causes massive delays in the lanes which make them travel almost as slow as the general purpose lanes at times making their high cost to dissuade additional users not worth it.

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Drove over the Prosperity Church/485 bridge yesterday.  The cement plant in the middle of future 485 has been disassembled and is sitting in pieces on already paved sections.  Looks like this last thousand or so feet is all that is left to be completed, aside from paint.  Anyone hear a date yet?  I remember seeing March 2015 and "Spring" 2015 before, so it shouldn't be too far off from finally finishing the 25+ year long-project.

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Drove over the Prosperity Church/485 bridge yesterday.  The cement plant in the middle of future 485 has been disassembled and is sitting in pieces on already paved sections.  Looks like this last thousand or so feet is all that is left to be completed, aside from paint.  Anyone hear a date yet?  I remember seeing March 2015 and "Spring" 2015 before, so it shouldn't be too far off from finally finishing the 25+ year long-project.

I posted the same question a few weeks back but got no answer. Maybe the second time is the charm.

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I posted the same question a few weeks back but got no answer. Maybe the second time is the charm.

Yea, digging on the internet has only led to finding out that the media sure does love the widening project on south 485.  The only recent article about the loop's completion was a WCNC article a few weeks ago that said "on track."

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Yea, digging on the internet has only led to finding out that the media sure does love the widening project on south 485.  The only recent article about the loop's completion was a WCNC article a few weeks ago that said "on track."

 

 

I read that it would be complete by late May.

 

Latest estimate (1/31/2015) on NCDOT Construction Progress Report is 5/22/2015 for 100% completion. They will probably announce an opening date (or delay) soon.

 

EDIT: Just saw the revised completion date of 7/20/2015. It's possible it will be open to traffic before then, with any remaining signage, final lane markings, etc. taking place at night.

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That's insane. In early Dec they said it was on track to be finish in Dec. Then a week later the said they wouldn't be able to pave with the cold weather and it would have to wait till Spring. How does that translate into late JULY? Holy crap the contractor is incompetent.

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I rode my bike along the majority of the extension a few months back and signage was in place for the most part.  Dirving around last night, the final signage is being installed on the Prosperity Church Road round-about intersection, and looks like it should be completed this week.  The majority of the concrete appears to be completely laid and grinded, except for the area where the concrete mill was set up, and for a few areas where exit ramps join to 485.

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