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Old July 1st, 2007, 05:52 PM   #521
algonquin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgk920 View Post
I'm very amazed at that from a national unity standpoint alone. ALL of eastern Canada and ALL of western Canada are held together at one point within Canada (it's actually about a half hour or so northeast of Thunder Bay, ON) by literally one two lane road and two single-track railroads. There aren't even any dirt sideroad alternates there. I really, honestly am very amazed that the country has held together for so long with such weak internal transport connections.

Also, the going is so rough, so incredibly rugged, north of Lake Superior that I have zero doubt that if the USA-Canada border was not where it currently is, neither the present-day TCH nor at least the CP mainline would have been built where they are now, across the top of Lake Superior. The CN mainline - a 'maybe' at most - and only the old CN line through Hearst, ON would be a definite 'yes', IMHO.

With no international border, the major east-west road and railroad connections in that region would have gone through the far, far, far, far easier present-day upper peninsula of Michigan and far northern Wisconsin.

Mike
Yeah, we're amazed too.

Honestly though, it doesn't bother me (and I may get chided for my opinion here). I think it's appropriate that there only be one highway connecting Canada together, considering the nature of the country. Canada is vast, and is made even more so by our small population. The majority of the country doesn't even have roads. In this sense, this stretch of the Trans Canada isn't alone; there are other examples in Canada that are similar and relate to our heritage, our history and our psyche. A few examples: the Arctic Ocean is reached by only one highway (barely). Though we have by far the most coastline of any nation on this earth, look at a road map: hardly any of it is accessible by road. In many places our settlement is linked by strands (Vancouver/Fraser Valley, N.Ontario rail and highway corridors, most of Quebec is situated within a few miles of the St.Lawrence river, all of Newfoundland lives on the coast). I'd go into the historic elements that lend towards my theory, but I'm running out of time. Basically, Canada is a collective of remote areas across a vast distance, and our highways reflect that reality.

So, to sum it up, we could build another east-west highway between Ontario and Manitoba, but there'd really be no point.

As for making the TCH four lanes all the way across, it's already being done. Across the country parts of the highway are being twinned.. it's only a matter of time. Of course, the section near our friend Vid will be the last section to be improved, unfortunately.

Also, I'd like to point out that nowadays air travel plays the largest part for travel within Canada. In many places it's the only option, as building roads is largely impossible throughout the Canadian North.
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Old July 1st, 2007, 05:55 PM   #522
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Quote:
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Yes but North of Superior does have some amazing scenery.
Thanks for posting those photos Vid.
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Old July 1st, 2007, 05:58 PM   #523
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Hmm, 4-lane TCH all the way doesn't sound necessary to me though. Is it true that there's also just one road leading to the Hudson Bay (to its eastern/south-eastern shore)? And a railway to Churchill, of course.

Last edited by Verso; July 1st, 2007 at 06:21 PM.
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Old July 1st, 2007, 06:14 PM   #524
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^ To be fair though, there is no plan to 4-lane the entire TCH across Canada. Certainly in the prairies and in the maritimes there has been aggressive highway construction to twin and improve the highway, however, the section between Kamloops and Banff still requires an awful lot of expensive work Small segments are being widened, but as far as I know nobody has made a commitment to finish twinning and upgrading the whole length of highway in BC. Ontario is even further behind, there are no plans to twin the TCH across the length of this province, and in a lot of areas traffic volumes are quite stagnant, meaning that the operation of these stretches of Highway 17 and 11 aren't getting any worse from year to year -- so twinning is unlikely.
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Old July 1st, 2007, 10:19 PM   #525
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The main concern here is safety though. People want the highway either four laned or twinned. The twinned four lane stretch of Thunder Bay Expressway almost never has accidents on it, and it is one of the busiest roads in NWO. If we could get the TCH from Hodder to Nipigon twinned or four lanes there would be less danger posed by the transports. The posted limit is 90 but every goes over 100, especially transports. Last year driving back from Atikokan, we were followed so closely by a transport that it's headlights were reflected off of the windshield and we couldn't see out. We couldn't stop or pull over either, it was driving to close.

Also, if Lakeshore Drive didn't exist, there would be about 1.5 times the amount of traffic on that road between Hodder and Green Bay. Even people that live west of the 11/17 will go down to Lakeshore to avoid the highway. When driving up to Nipigon, we've always taken Lakeshore Drive.
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Old July 2nd, 2007, 12:43 AM   #526
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Verso View Post
Hmm, 4-lane TCH all the way doesn't sound necessary to me though. Is it true that there's also just one road leading to the Hudson Bay (to its eastern/south-eastern shore)? And a railway to Churchill, of course.
There are actually no roads that lead to Hudson Bay. There are, however, two rail lines that do, one in Manitoba (as you mentioned) and one in Ontario. I've actually had the pleasure of going up the Polar Bear Express in Ontario. It's terminus (Moosonee) is much further south than Churchill, though.

There are winter roads that skirt the coast of Hudson Bay (and James Bay, the smaller bay at the southern portion of Hudson Bay). A winter road is simply plowed snow over frozen water or tundra, and obviously are not permanent. These roads are only reachable by rail, though.
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Old July 2nd, 2007, 12:53 AM   #527
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Originally Posted by sonysnob View Post
Ontario is even further behind, there are no plans to twin the TCH across the length of this province, and in a lot of areas traffic volumes are quite stagnant, meaning that the operation of these stretches of Highway 17 and 11 aren't getting any worse from year to year -- so twinning is unlikely.
There may be no plans for the entire length, but major construction is happening. The 417 is being extended regularly west from Ottawa (it's as far as Arnprior now). Hwy 69 (the forgotten part of the TCH) is quickly disapearing... Hwy 400 now extends as far north as Parry Sound, and they've begun construction of an expressway south of Sudbury to replace a 20-30km portion of the 69. There's even a new expressway by-pass planned around Sault Ste Marie, but I don't know it's status.
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Old July 2nd, 2007, 01:12 AM   #528
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There may be no plans for the entire length, but major construction is happening. The 417 is being extended regularly west from Ottawa (it's as far as Arnprior now). Hwy 69 (the forgotten part of the TCH) is quickly disapearing... Hwy 400 now extends as far north as Parry Sound, and they've begun construction of an expressway south of Sudbury to replace a 20-30km portion of the 69. There's even a new expressway by-pass planned around Sault Ste Marie, but I don't know it's status.
True, but the fact that there is construction on the Trans-Canada doesn't mean that there are any plans to complete the Trans-Canada as a 4-lane highway across the country.
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Old July 2nd, 2007, 03:38 AM   #529
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Through the western provinces, the speed limit is generally 100 km/h (62 mph) on the Trans-Canada, though limited-access portions in Alberta and Saskatchewan may have higher limits of 110 km/h (68 mph).
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trans-Canada_Highway


I thought the entire Canada had max. speed limit of 100 km/h (62 mph).
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Old July 2nd, 2007, 07:44 AM   #530
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgk920 View Post
I'm very amazed at that from a national unity standpoint alone. ALL of eastern Canada and ALL of western Canada are held together at one point within Canada (it's actually about a half hour or so northeast of Thunder Bay, ON) by literally one two lane road and two single-track railroads. There aren't even any dirt sideroad alternates there. I really, honestly am very amazed that the country has held together for so long with such weak internal transport connections.
All of Canada connected by 1 road:

http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&ll=4...3584&z=10&om=1
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Old July 2nd, 2007, 11:06 AM   #531
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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trans-Canada_Highway


I thought the entire Canada had max. speed limit of 100 km/h (62 mph).
It's 90 through Thunder Bay, but in some places where it goes through towns as their main street (We don't have by-passes here) it can go as low as 40km/h. That's about 25 miles/hour. On the Trans-Canada Highway.
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Old July 2nd, 2007, 01:11 PM   #532
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Just south of Moncton, New Brunswick is another stretch that has a 110km/h speed limit.
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Old July 2nd, 2007, 02:58 PM   #533
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Traffic flow in the Greater Lakehead



Again, the demand for twinning/four laning/dividing is due to safety issues, not capacity issues.

There images are from Pearl, between Ouimet Road and 587, and it happens more often than it should. We were lucky to have been near a road. The detour was around 35 kilometres long, and took over an hour.



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Old July 2nd, 2007, 03:02 PM   #534
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Jesus Christ OMG, what is taht, albanian national roads look way better.
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Old July 2nd, 2007, 03:09 PM   #535
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It does the job, at least it has shoulders. You don't see many roads in Europe which have shoulders and aren't up to motorway standards.
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Old July 2nd, 2007, 03:14 PM   #536
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It only has a shoulder there because there is an intersection. When cars are turning, transports pass you on the paved shoulder to the right. (Which is illegal but they do it anyway.) The rest of the highway is dirt shoulder, in some places it isn't even compacted, and just falls into swampy land a few feet from the road surface. In other places, there is an 8 to 24 inch shoulder, because of rock cuts.

This stretch of the highway isn't too bad, but when you go past the city and onto 11 towards Fort Frances, there is no shoulder at all. (And that's also part of the Trans Canada.)
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Old July 2nd, 2007, 03:23 PM   #537
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Oh boy, I love traffic jams in the middle of nowhere.
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Old July 4th, 2007, 12:55 AM   #538
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Quote:
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Jesus Christ OMG, what is taht, albanian national roads look way better.

Do you always see the Lord in the cracks of roadways?
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Old July 4th, 2007, 02:12 AM   #539
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Cheesh, the English daily outta here reported past Saturday (extra long edition of the week here) that the provincial government wishes to build a replacement to the Turcott interchange, and then demolish what presently serves this junction (there`s also a railway junction underneath it). Umm, does this mean that the expressway for miles west of it do away with its driving on the left-hand side (due to planning around the three parallel train tracks back in the 60s)? This interchange is 2Km west of the shifted pillar(s), and amounts to absurdly high-stilted el sections, whereafter their (our?!?) replacement is to be starkly close to the ground if not upon it.

What a stupid idea -- where the heck are the electric trains, huh? Paralleling all this upon an escarpment just 500 metres north is a three-track train line that`s screaming to overcome being marginally utilized, and wailing for full-on electrification.

WTF, wake up America !! It`s time we made it into western culture by becoming a fully ''developed'' place.

How embarassing -- we're such a bunch of slow pokes (mentally too, by all my experience) . . .
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Old July 4th, 2007, 02:42 AM   #540
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Quote:
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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trans-Canada_Highway


I thought the entire Canada had max. speed limit of 100 km/h (62 mph).
Vancouver island highway 19 is 110km/h, and should realistically be 130km/h due to it's flat and strait nature. I guess people in Canada/US need to brush up on their driving skills in order for this to happen however...as I've seen way worse highway with higher speed limits in Europe.
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