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JerseyBoy

Triad Traffic Congestion and Highway Construction

81 posts in this topic

Thread on the Triad's roads and its effects on the area.

To start this thread off, the NCDOT will be going door to door in the Ardmore neighborhood in Winston-Salem to ask residents what their opinion is on either closing Business 40 for about two years to modernize and replace bridges or leave it open while construction may take five years.

http://www.journalnow.com/servlet/Satellit...d=1173353086971

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Got home this afternoon and had a little orange paper stating that the DOT will be visiting my neighborhood in the upcoming weeks.

It has a website listed for project details:

www.business40nc.com

If any of you want more information, call:

336-722-0565

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I would choose to just have it closed for 2 years. There are some fairly large one way roads in downtown and I'm sure traffic can be detoured over them efficiently. With the 6 year plan, there would be even more gridlock than now and people would eventually try to aviod the highway anyway. However I belive the time frame for this project is 2013 so things might be alot diffrent then.

Edited by Noneck_08

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I wish by the time they're getting ready to rehabilitate the road, that they would set up the light rail line along Stratford to alleviate some of the traffic headaches that are sure to be caused by this.

I agree, I'm opting for the two year plan as well. I'm sure the commuters will primarily use First Street as the alternative route, which is sure to have a positive effect on business along that street.

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"What can we do to avoid gridlock?" Mass transit, re-orienting communities to a walkable scale, conservative fuel use, long-term regional planning...

One thing I'd like to see is for DoT and local communities to take some leadership in the land use immediately adjacent to freeway intersections. I've said it before somewhere on the UP forums... How often have we all observed a 'roadway improvement project' focused on alleviating congestion that just enables more traffic with more lanes? A rural crossroad today, is a major traffic hotspot tomorrow.

I am encouraged by DoT's 'door to door' tactic, as it recognizes that this is ultimately a human problem.

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Are those the only two options? It seems a little chaotic to completely close THE major artery into and out of downtown...why can't they do the work from 10 pm to 6 am and on weekends?

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If they were to do the work at your suggested hours, then the road construction would take about six years or more. One member on another forum suggested closing one side of the highway and having both directions of traffic traveling on the other side. I'm for closing the highway completely as the work will go by faster and DOT won't have to worry about shifting lanes, which takes up a good amount of time.

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If they were to do the work at your suggested hours, then the road construction would take about six years or more. One member on another forum suggested closing one side of the highway and having both directions of traffic traveling on the other side. I'm for closing the highway completely as the work will go by faster and DOT won't have to worry about shifting lanes, which takes up a good amount of time.

Why would it take more time than any other proposal? Maybe you misread my post - I suggested working 7 days a week, and on weekdays work the graveyard shift when there is little to no traffic. The crews would still work 8-10 hours per day and 7 days each week. They wouldn't work more than that if the highway is closed...and the roadway could remain open to rush hour traffic with occasional diversions and lane closures like you suggested.

It's the scenario that many other cities use for major roadwork, bridge repair and construction, or anything that would impede daytime traffic.

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Is it just me, or does it seem that I-40 around US 311 and Union Cross Rd in Forsyth Co. is quite a dangerous stretch of road? This weekends 5-fatality crash seems to underscore this. It seems that 'quite a few' accidents happen on this stretch.

I travel this section frequently, and except for a short section around the 311 interchange that seems easy to 'misguide' your car on, it's a fairly standard interstate. Traffic levels seem quite manageable except during the rush periods in the morning and afternoons. Does this section need to be 'upgraded' or 'redesigned' by DOT? :dontknow:

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Is it just me, or does it seem that I-40 around US 311 and Union Cross Rd in Forsyth Co. is quite a dangerous stretch of road? This weekends 5-fatality crash seems to underscore this. It seems that 'quite a few' accidents happen on this stretch.

I travel this section frequently, and except for a short section around the 311 interchange that seems easy to 'misguide' your car on, it's a fairly standard interstate. Traffic levels seem quite manageable except during the rush periods in the morning and afternoons. Does this section need to be 'upgraded' or 'redesigned' by DOT? :dontknow:

I think it could use another lane in each direction, like the stretch of I-40 in Durham, especially with the development starting in the Union Cross Rd area. To me, the vast difference in driver's speeds make it dangerous at times. Many drivers do 80+ in that area, along with the slower cars and semis traveling at or below the speed limit. Some people tend to get impatient behind the slower people and often make unsafe moves in traffic, like cutting other drivers off, tailgating, etc.

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I use this road quite frequently, myself, and have a few concerns with it. The merging areas are extremely tight at the 52 interchange. This interchange wasn't built new but rather incorporated into the new 40 bypass.

I-40 needs to be widened between the Business 40/I-40 junction and 311. There is too much traffic being crammed onto this road, coupled with the insane speeds that drivers do in that area, just makes a huge mess. As jasoniman pointed out, this section is fairly identical to the portion of I-40 through Orange and western Durham counties in design and era of construction. I could see a possible Durham-like widening but it is highly unlikely given that most DOT money for the Triad in the upcoming years will be for the Greensboro and Winston-Salem beltways along with the costs of widening 85 in Rowan and Davidson counties.

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Why would it take more time than any other proposal? Maybe you misread my post - I suggested working 7 days a week, and on weekdays work the graveyard shift when there is little to no traffic. The crews would still work 8-10 hours per day and 7 days each week. They wouldn't work more than that if the highway is closed...and the roadway could remain open to rush hour traffic with occasional diversions and lane closures like you suggested.

It's the scenario that many other cities use for major roadwork, bridge repair and construction, or anything that would impede daytime traffic.

Heavy construction work is extremely dangerous. Typically, paving is done at night and some minor structural work. However for a project which involves such complicated work as totaly reconstructing the facility. Not all work can be accomplished during the night time. Just like with any type of work, doing it at night lowers productivity and efficiency of the construction crews, thus lengthening the construction duration.

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While I was home for Christmas I had the chance to ride on the newly widened and redesigned Friendly Avenue between Holden Road and Westridge. It turned out really nice. The utility poles, however, are an eyesore.

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On a trip to West Virginia this past weekend, I noticed that the DOT is widening 77 to 4 lanes in each direction from 421 to Elkin. :dontknow: And here we sit with crumbling bridges and outdated inner city freeways...

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On a trip to West Virginia this past weekend, I noticed that the DOT is widening 77 to 4 lanes in each direction from 421 to Elkin. :dontknow: And here we sit with crumbling bridges and outdated inner city freeways...

Why??

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Why??

I would say because it handles more interstate commercial traffic than I-40 or US52. Winston-Salem in NOT on a major N/S corridor for NC (I-85/I-77/I-95 being those.)

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I would say because it handles more interstate commercial traffic than I-40 or US52. Winston-Salem in NOT on a major N/S corridor for NC (I-85/I-77/I-95 being those.)

True, but I want to know what the DOT's justification is for widening a stretch of road that really does not need it. The part(s) of 77 they should've rehabilitated are in North Meck or Iredell County, not near a cow pasture in Rena. Yadkin County is a part of the same division as Forsyth County, and I don't recall ever coming across anything in the paper or the DOT website about this project. What irks me the most is that there are projects in the Triad that have been postponed for decades, and we get pushed to the side for a small exurban area. There must be some justification for it, but I'm just not seeing it.

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I would be curious to know daily traffic counts for that stretch of I-77 compared to the highways in Winston-Salem that need rehabbing or are planned for construction..

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I would be curious to know daily traffic counts for that stretch of I-77 compared to the highways in Winston-Salem that need rehabbing or are planned for construction..

I checked the DOT's website and this stretch of 77 gets between 30,000-33,000 cars a day, compared to I-40 in South Winston that gets between 74,000-96,000 vehicles.

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That's not a widening project, I don't think. You can do a search of project in the area here by route or county. Searching Yadkin Co & I-77, there are some repaving projects, but that's about it. More details here (p. 39).

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This evening I went to the Ardmore informational meeting for the Business 40 widening project. There really isn't much to report on except for a few tid-bits.

Overall there was about 25-30 people who showed up from all walks of life (old, young, male, female, etc.).

- The DOT is trying to bring all groups of people together (engineers, neighborhood associations, City of W-S)

- Several of the 11 bridges on the stretch of road scheduled to be rehabilitated are in need of either total replacement of major reconstruction.

- NCDOT wants to complete all major reconstruction problems at one time (Get in, Get out!).

- NCDOT wants to resurface the road, improve the width of the lanes, and remove/reconfigure exit and entrance ramps.

- They want to relocate/replace 11 bridges, replace utilities, and set up better drainage systems.

- Drew, planner of Business 40 rehabilitation, says that if the road was left open for 6 years then there would be no bridges or ramps open.

- Construction is scheduled to being in 2015

- The DOT wants the road to last another 50 years, though there aren't 100% sure of the final cost.

I asked the DOT whether they will make this a unique project by giving the bridges unique designs (i.e. not your standard interstate one) and incorporate pedestrian friendly features and bike lanes into the bridges. They said that they will try to work with local arts groups to make the road aesthetically pleasing. Though they mentioned that their budget is limited but that they would work with the community.

I also asked whether they will work with the City of Winston-Salem to implement alternative modes of transportation to help commuters and core neighborhood residents get around the project. When FDOT widened 95 in Palm Beach and Broward Counties they set up a temporary service known as 'Tri-Rail' to help commuters but it grew to be so successful that they left in place. I asked, since the project won't start for another 7 years, if they could speed up the light rail along Stratford Road or the streetcar line from WFUBMC to Downtown. The DOT responded by saying they are looking into all modes of transportation to incorporate into this project.

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This is a big decision, that is, how the repairs and improvements will be done. Once complete, it will be to interstate standards, and the green I 40 designation should be removed, and a regular interstate standard be used. The problem is that it must be even, and I 240, 440, 640, and 840 are taken now in North Carolina. Actually, the Greensboro Beltway probably should have been I 885 using I 85 as the parent instead of I 40 thereby leaving I 840 for W-S. Now, the only alternatives are to make what is now green I 40 in W-S I 1040, the first four digit interstate, or to make it I 474, 674, or 874 since the western leg of the W-S beltway will be I 274.

Edited by yadkinv

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This is a big decision, that is, how the repairs and improvements will be done. Once complete, it will be to interstate standards, and the green I 40 designation should be removed, and a regular interstate standard be used. The problem is that it must be even, and I 240, 440, 640, and 840 are taken now in North Carolina. Actually, the Greensboro Beltway probably should have been I 885 using I 85 as the parent instead of I 40 thereby leaving I 840 for W-S. Now, the only alternatives are to make what is now green I 40 in W-S I 1040, the first four digit interstate, or to make it I 474, 674, or 874 since the western leg of the W-S beltway will be I 274.

I'd say if NCDOT were to agree to implement some form of commuter rail to downtown Winston-Salem and Forsyth county, then go for the 2 year closing and get the project over and done with (6-7 years is alot longer than you think). With the synchonization of lights through out downtown and use of proper signage it doesn't have to be that bad. There is I 40 bypass less than 2 miles south of the existing I-40 business. I agree that NCDOT should have used I-885 (Or 685 making it a numeric progression of 285 in Atlanta, and 485 in Charlotte). Using x74 on the Winston-Salem beltway isn't that bad though. Anyone know if Green 40 be up to interstate standards along its entirety once this project is complete?

Edited by Creasy336

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Business 40 will not be up to interstate standards when these upgrades are complete. The recently rehabilitated sections of this road from the I-40/421 interchange in western Winston-Salem to Peters Creek and MLK Drive to Linville Road were not built to interstate standards. The lanes are far too small, the emergency lanes are not wide enough, and most ending points of ramps are not multi-lane (a requirement for interstates). When the DOT reconstructed parts of this road, their intention was to not make the road an interstate but as a limited access multi-lane road to funnel local and commuter traffic through the inner core neighborhoods of Winston.

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JerseyBoy, in your next to last pic it seems as if people prefer to drag this out over 6-7 years. However, the Journal is reporting the majority of folks prefer the 2 year option. What was the outcome of the meeting you attended? This seems contradictory.

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