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Old June 16th, 2012, 02:38 AM   #8121
diablo234
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There are even plans to extend the reversible HOV lanes even further south along I-95 to Fredericksburg.

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Slugging does happen in the Washington, D.C., area. Even non-"liberal" parts.

And the segment of I-66 between the Beltway and the G.W. Parkway (in the not-particularly-liberal-especially-in-1982 state of Virginia) has been HOV-only, during rush hours, since it opened in 1982. One of the first HOV restrictions, if not the first, in the country.
The main reason why carpooling and "slugging" are popular in Northern Virginia is because the DC Metro area has the worst traffic in the country (even surpassing Los Angeles), the fact that there is no room available for freeway expansion, and the fact that most job centers are clustered together in DC, Arlington, Tyson's Corner, Alexandria, etc which enable carpooling and slugging to be more effective.
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Old June 16th, 2012, 02:56 AM   #8122
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There are even plans to extend the reversible HOV lanes even further south along I-95 to Fredericksburg.
So I've read. And there have been stubs at the south end for years now, so it was to be expected.
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Old June 16th, 2012, 04:31 AM   #8123
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When I was in the DC area last month, there was a MASSIVE construction in the middle of the Beltway, they are making HOT lanes in the middle of the highway. Unlike here in Hartford, the HOV lanes are actually used a lot there.
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Old June 16th, 2012, 06:41 PM   #8124
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How long have the HOV lanes in Hartford been open?
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Old June 16th, 2012, 07:10 PM   #8125
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There are even plans to extend the reversible HOV lanes even further south along I-95 to Fredericksburg.
Yep, there are plans to convert it into a HOT facility (tolls) and widen the reversible to 3 lanes. This will accommodate long-distance commuters with reliable travel times - at a price.
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Old June 16th, 2012, 07:36 PM   #8126
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I'm so glad the Midwest doesn't have HOV lanes.
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Old June 16th, 2012, 08:01 PM   #8127
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Yep, there are plans to convert it into a HOT facility (tolls) and widen the reversible to 3 lanes. This will accommodate long-distance commuters with reliable travel times - at a price.
True, to an extent. Aside from the price of buying an E-ZPass if they don't already have one, carpoolers (minimum of 3 per car) can use them for free. Those who travel with 2 or fewer will shoulder the load of toll revenue.

The most glaring oversight of this project, however, is the fact that everyone who uses the Express Lanes (as they're called up there) MUST be an E-ZPass customer. Since I-95 is a major travel route, there are ostensibly thousands of drivers from points south of VA that may want to use these lanes. The problem is that nobody south of VA has any partnership with E-ZPass (whether membership or mutual agreement), so they won't get to take advantage of the free lanes.

Instead, they'll get a letter in the mail and a bill.
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Old June 16th, 2012, 08:10 PM   #8128
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There are plans for interoperability between SunPass and E-ZPass though.
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Old June 16th, 2012, 08:29 PM   #8129
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I'm so glad the Midwest doesn't have HOV lanes.
Minnesota has tons of them, all in the Twin Cities.

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There are plans for interoperability between SunPass and E-ZPass though.
NC is talking about it too. I haven't seen any such plans from anywhere else, though, like SC and GA.
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Old June 16th, 2012, 08:38 PM   #8130
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Minnesota has tons of them, all in the Twin Cities.
The only ones that I know of in the Great Lakes area are on I-394 between MN 100 and I-94 in downtown Minneapolis. These lanes are reversible.

Mike
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Old June 16th, 2012, 09:34 PM   #8131
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The only ones that I know of in the Great Lakes area are on I-394 between MN 100 and I-94 in downtown Minneapolis. These lanes are reversible.

Mike
I was quoting a source I found, but it turns out the majority of what they consider "HOV facilities" are bus-only shoulders. Technically those are HOV facilities, but they fall outside the domain of what we're discussing here.
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Old June 17th, 2012, 03:35 AM   #8132
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How long have the HOV lanes in Hartford been open?
I believe they were installed in the eighties.
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Old June 17th, 2012, 06:58 AM   #8133
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The only ones that I know of in the Great Lakes area are on I-394 between MN 100 and I-94 in downtown Minneapolis. These lanes are reversible.
There are also some on I-35W between DT Minne to just south of the Crosstown Commons.
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Old June 18th, 2012, 05:06 PM   #8134
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True, to an extent. Aside from the price of buying an E-ZPass if they don't already have one, carpoolers (minimum of 3 per car) can use them for free. Those who travel with 2 or fewer will shoulder the load of toll revenue.

The most glaring oversight of this project, however, is the fact that everyone who uses the Express Lanes (as they're called up there) MUST be an E-ZPass customer. Since I-95 is a major travel route, there are ostensibly thousands of drivers from points south of VA that may want to use these lanes. The problem is that nobody south of VA has any partnership with E-ZPass (whether membership or mutual agreement), so they won't get to take advantage of the free lanes.

Instead, they'll get a letter in the mail and a bill.
Is there still talk of tolling 95 in Virginia?
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Old June 18th, 2012, 05:38 PM   #8135
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Is there still talk of tolling 95 in Virginia?
So far, yeah.

And according to the comments in this article, you of course have people up in arms, saying "I'll take alternate routes!"

I'm extremely familiar with US routes 1 and 301 in Virginia. After a certain point, one would just be better off paying the toll on I-95 and maintaining 65+ mph. US 1 is becoming increasingly suburban between Fredericksburg and Richmond (read: stoplights galore).
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Old June 18th, 2012, 05:46 PM   #8136
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There is a difference what people say and what people actually will do. Many may say they will avoid the tolls, but if the average speed on the alternate routes drop to 30 - 40 miles per hour (or even less), you're better off paying the tolls.

North Carolina also wants to toll I-95. I believe short-distance traffic may indeed avoid I-95, but I doubt if many people are willing to drive 200 or 300 miles on two-lane roads to avoid the tolls.
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Old June 18th, 2012, 05:56 PM   #8137
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There is a difference what people say and what people actually will do. Many may say they will avoid the tolls, but if the average speed on the alternate routes drop to 30 - 40 miles per hour (or even less), you're better off paying the tolls.

North Carolina also wants to toll I-95. I believe short-distance traffic may indeed avoid I-95, but I doubt if many people are willing to drive 200 or 300 miles on two-lane roads to avoid the tolls.
Two-lane roads, few bypasses of cities and towns, stoplights. Not to mention the increase in gas used because of the more frequent starting and stopping.

Plus, I think I read that I-95 would only charge up to $2 per axle for the entire stretch between Fredericksburg and the NC border. Considering I've paid much more than that just to enter NYC via a bridge (and paid it again to leave), paying $4-8 to traverse an entire state doesn't sound so bad.
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Old June 18th, 2012, 06:09 PM   #8138
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Toll-free Interstates (unlike all those New York-area bridges and tunnels, not to mention pre-Interstate toll roads) were built with Federal money and should (i.m.h.o.) remain free, just on principle. Yes, I understand we pay for them in other ways....

Former Governor (of Pennsylvania) Ed Rendell wanted to toll I-80 and was vetoed by the feds several times. It would be unfair, after that, to now allow Virginia and/or North Carolina to do it (but I didn't approve of it when it was a Rendell proposal either). And this isn't a partisan issue - current governor of Virginia's a Republican, Rendell's a Democrat - except insofar as...[self-censored, since I've complained recently about politics infecting this forum].
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Old June 18th, 2012, 06:31 PM   #8139
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Toll-free Interstates (unlike all those New York-area bridges and tunnels, not to mention pre-Interstate toll roads) were built with Federal money and should (i.m.h.o.) remain free, just on principle. Yes, I understand we pay for them in other ways....

Former Governor (of Pennsylvania) Ed Rendell wanted to toll I-80 and was vetoed by the feds several times. It would be unfair, after that, to now allow Virginia and/or North Carolina to do it (but I didn't approve of it when it was a Rendell proposal either). And this isn't a partisan issue - current governor of Virginia's a Republican, Rendell's a Democrat - except insofar as...[self-censored, since I've complained recently about politics infecting this forum].
There's a bit of difference when you talk about building a road but then paying to maintain that road in the future. If the Feds had the money to maintain roads, then I'd agree with you completely. But since they don't, I guess the states have to take drastic measures.

Often thrown around is raising the gas tax, but that doesn't look to be a panacea for a few reasons:
1 - Mention raising taxes and all hell breaks loose. Especially in VA.
2 - Quite a few developments, such as increases in mass transit usage (and decreases in driving) and yearly improvements in automobile fuel economy, actually work against the gas tax idea.
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Old June 18th, 2012, 06:54 PM   #8140
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Any thoughts on the impact on other Interstates? I'm visualizing truckers detouring up to 81. 81 through Winchester on a Sunday is enough to make you wish we had a German-style Sunday truck ban.

Hmm. Now that I think of it, there's at least one place in France - or is it Germany? - where trucks only pay a toll. I'm sure Chris knows (Maybe I'm thinking of having read about trucks diverting through Alsace on the (free) A35 to avoid a toll in Germany?)
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