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Old May 7th, 2011, 02:59 AM   #6801
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Quote:
Originally Posted by I-275westcoastfl View Post
Depends on where in the US you are but yeah some places you would never think the roads are bad.
USA really does have the best roads/highways in the world. I'm up in Canada (Vancouver) and I marvel at the highways the states have whenever I come down.
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Old May 7th, 2011, 06:34 AM   #6802
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Botev1912 View Post
I have driven on a lot of interstates, smaller highways and streets in USA and the roads are in good condition (not perfect like Spain for example). There are roads in perfect condition, there are roads in bad condition (like everywhere), but most of the US roads are fine
Yeah, overall the roads here are pretty good, but given how wealthly our country is they should be perfect
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Old May 7th, 2011, 08:56 AM   #6803
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VoltAmps View Post
USA really does have the best roads/highways in the world. I'm up in Canada (Vancouver) and I marvel at the highways the states have whenever I come down.
Compared to Vancouver yes. When I go there it takes me 1:30 hours from Seattle to the border (around 100 miles or 160 km) and then another 1 hour from the border to Vancouver (for only 30 miles or 48 km) because there is only that 99 highway which has a lot of traffic lights. It's annoying. Why haven't they built a freeway between the border and Vancouver?
But compared to Spain and France, the road surface in US isn't that great. Some western European countries have better highways. I still like the US system better though
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Old May 7th, 2011, 10:22 AM   #6804
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Botev1912 View Post
Compared to Vancouver yes. When I go there it takes me 1:30 hours from Seattle to the border (around 100 miles or 160 km) and then another 1 hour from the border to Vancouver (for only 30 miles or 48 km) because there is only that 99 highway which has a lot of traffic lights. It's annoying. Why haven't they built a freeway between the border and Vancouver?
But compared to Spain and France, the road surface in US isn't that great. Some western European countries have better highways. I still like the US system better though
Vancouver decided to not route a highway through the city to focus more on transit. In terms of a planning and smart growth perspective, it's worked. Vancouver is significantly denser and more homogenous than Seattle with great transit ridership.

My perspective is that highways shouldn't take you into the city, but to the city. Once you get to the city, you take a B-road or a major arterial to get into it. Routing it through a city is never good for the Central Core as it creates major gridlock (like Seattle).
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Old May 7th, 2011, 10:50 AM   #6805
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I have noticed that they don't repave the bridge decks on the freeways. Even if they repave the freeway with brand new asphalt, they leave the old concrete on the bridge decks? Why don't they change it too?

Last edited by Botev1912; May 7th, 2011 at 11:03 AM.
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Old May 7th, 2011, 11:01 AM   #6806
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Originally Posted by HAWC1506 View Post
My perspective is that highways shouldn't take you into the city, but to the city. Once you get to the city, you take a B-road or a major arterial to get into it. Routing it through a city is never good for the Central Core as it creates major gridlock (like Seattle).
This is one thing that really impressed me when I moved to the USA. It's really convenient when a highway takes you into the city. If you live close by the freeway, you get to any place you want fast. Unfortunately the traffic is getting worse and worse
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Old May 7th, 2011, 11:13 AM   #6807
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Here are two pics of the H1 in "town". Note that HI DOT uses those durable white tack looking things instead of painting passing lines on the pavement.

photo by unknown author
don't they come off? There are a lot of roads with missing botts dots here. I still don't know why they keep using these on city roads (Lynnwood, Bellevue, Renton) instead of paint or profiled marking. The reflective markings are good and very helpful but the others are not necessary. They don't survive and they don't replace them either

Last edited by Botev1912; May 7th, 2011 at 11:20 AM.
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Old May 7th, 2011, 11:23 AM   #6808
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There is no snow in Hawaii, hence no snowplows that destroy them.
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Old May 7th, 2011, 11:52 AM   #6809
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It rarely snows in Seattle area. The snow isn't the only problem. The heavy trucks are a bigger problem. They break them
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Old May 7th, 2011, 12:00 PM   #6810
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Botev1912 View Post
Compared to Vancouver yes. When I go there it takes me 1:30 hours from Seattle to the border (around 100 miles or 160 km) and then another 1 hour from the border to Vancouver (for only 30 miles or 48 km) because there is only that 99 highway which has a lot of traffic lights. It's annoying. Why haven't they built a freeway between the border and Vancouver?
But compared to Spain and France, the road surface in US isn't that great. Some western European countries have better highways. I still like the US system better though
Thats a good way of putting it. I love the interstate system. But I agree they could stand to improve the road surfaces in some areas.

Get a luxury SUV and you won't even feel it
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Old May 7th, 2011, 12:10 PM   #6811
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HAWC1506 View Post
Vancouver decided to not route a highway through the city to focus more on transit. In terms of a planning and smart growth perspective, it's worked. Vancouver is significantly denser and more homogenous than Seattle with great transit ridership.

My perspective is that highways shouldn't take you into the city, but to the city. Once you get to the city, you take a B-road or a major arterial to get into it. Routing it through a city is never good for the Central Core as it creates major gridlock (like Seattle).
Vancouver should at least have a by-pass highway from the border though. What about all the traffic going up the west coast past Vancouver?

We either have HWY 99 that is a freeway that ends abruptly at the edge of Vancouver. Or we have the "Pacific Highway" that connects the alternate border crossing in Surrey with HWY 1 and cuts through Langley. But its nothing more than a 4 lane road with many MANY traffic lights. Both routes are inadequate
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Old May 7th, 2011, 12:51 PM   #6812
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I-405 road work. The concrete is really old and rough so it has been diamond-grounded as a temporary fix before repaving next year.
Is that northbound or southbound? Because I-405 northbound before and a little after Bellevue hasn't been fixed. It's still that old rough concrete 3 years later

Last edited by Botev1912; May 7th, 2011 at 01:10 PM.
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Old May 7th, 2011, 05:33 PM   #6813
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Originally Posted by Botev1912 View Post
But compared to Spain and France, the road surface in US isn't that great. Some western European countries have better highways. I still like the US system better though
In our defense, a higher proportion of Spain's and France's freeways are newer than most of ours: I recently came across some road maps from my first trip to France in 1985 and was surprised by how many of the autoroutes I'm familiar with are not on the map, not even under construction. In the U.S., I'd guess roughly 90 percent of today's Interstate system was open by then.

Which doesn't excuse lack of maintenance, of course....
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Old May 7th, 2011, 05:42 PM   #6814
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True. France had a surprisingly small Autoroute network until the 1980's, only the most important routes were completed at that time. Around 1967-1969 France and the Netherlands had the same network length (France is 16 times larger). It should be noted that the French government owned Autoroutes are generally of much lower quality than the toll routes, especially in the North and East.

However, I do agree that age does not justify bad road quality. We have freeways in the Netherlands that are over 50 years old and still have impeccable quality.
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Old May 7th, 2011, 07:02 PM   #6815
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Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
[snip]It should be noted that the French government owned Autoroutes are generally of much lower quality than the toll routes, especially in the North and East.[snip]
I was looking the other day at...is it Piotr71?'s...pictures of the A25/N225. Can't remember if it was here or on his Picasa page. I was stunned, particularly at the N225. In fact, would it be fair to say that U.S. government-owned, toll-free Interstates (which is most of them) are generally better in quality than French government-owned, toll-free autoroutes and voies express? :-D
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Old May 7th, 2011, 10:17 PM   #6816
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Beskedy's I think, and I was also surprised
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Old May 8th, 2011, 04:44 AM   #6817
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Interstate 40 closed for traffic in Arkansas, around mile 202, due to flooding.
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Old May 9th, 2011, 04:20 AM   #6818
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Old May 9th, 2011, 10:00 AM   #6819
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Botev1912 View Post
I have noticed that they don't repave the bridge decks on the freeways. Even if they repave the freeway with brand new asphalt, they leave the old concrete on the bridge decks? Why don't they change it too?
I have no idea, I've been wondering that myself. I think it has to do with the difficulty of dealing with expansion joints, approach slabs, and the effort required to make the pavement on the bridge deck completely level with its surroundings. I'll ask around and try to get an answer though.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Botev1912 View Post
don't they come off? There are a lot of roads with missing botts dots here. I still don't know why they keep using these on city roads (Lynnwood, Bellevue, Renton) instead of paint or profiled marking. The reflective markings are good and very helpful but the others are not necessary. They don't survive and they don't replace them either
They come off all the time. WSDOT started using plastic profiled pavement markings instead of raised pavement markings. Apparently they last almost four times as long. I guess City jurisdictions haven't really caught on yet, but they don't deal with the traffic intensity or wear and tear that highways get, so it might be a cost issue. Profiled markings cost twice as much as the raised pavement markings.


Quote:
Originally Posted by VoltAmps View Post
Vancouver should at least have a by-pass highway from the border though. What about all the traffic going up the west coast past Vancouver?
That's true, driving through Vancouver is a pain. A bypass sure would be nice. The Downtown area is a huge hassle to get through, and there are barely any designated turning lanes for traffic turning left so it clogs everything up.


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Originally Posted by Botev1912 View Post
Is that northbound or southbound? Because I-405 northbound before and a little after Bellevue hasn't been fixed. It's still that old rough concrete 3 years later
That would be northbound. The rehabilitated section on I-405 was actually a quieter-pavement test section, where WSDOT evaluated methods to reduce noise associated with pavement. I don't think the section closer to Bellevue will be repaved in the near future. For the most part, the Open-Graded asphalt sections have failed (miserably...) because of studded tire use. The test sections on SR 520 are rutted and are starting to develop potholes. They also sound just as loud as regular HMA at this point.

The asphalt section on I-405 was different in that WSDOT wanted to evaluate whether or not installing the pavement at a higher temperature would affect its performance over time, so they waited until the weather was above 65 degrees before installing the pavement. The concrete section was diamond grinding.
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Old May 9th, 2011, 10:05 AM   #6820
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On another note, the SR 520 bridge replacement project will introduce managed shoulder running for the first time in conjunction with Active Traffic Management (although there won't be a dedicated lane control sign above the shoulder).

I believe this sign will also be used, in LED form. What makes it even more interesting is that this sign isn't in the MUTCD yet.



It makes me wonder whether one day we will switch completely to International Vienna Convention style road signs.
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