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Old March 4th, 2010, 12:15 AM   #601
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wover View Post
Some people actually feel 'bad' about having to change the colors (only yellow-black and white-black are allowed). "If the Dutch can keep theirs, why do we have to change ours".. :p
Please save us from yellow-black
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Old March 8th, 2010, 10:55 AM   #602
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E40 Leuven - Brussel has had a temporary widening a while ago, the shoulder was turned into a 4th lane. Some pics by Ditho.

This section is still congested, there is a huge peak from the whole region towards Brussels during the morning rush. E40 east of Leuven has low traffic volumes though, so it seems that most traffic originates from Leuven and E314.











comprehend this in 2 seconds:


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Old March 26th, 2010, 07:40 PM   #603
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Some pics of the notorious Boirs viaduct in E313 Liège - Antwerpen.

It is in dire need of replacement, and it looks structurally unsound, although I'm not an expert on that. Let's say it doesn't look safe.





















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Old March 27th, 2010, 01:30 AM   #604
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When are they finally going to do something about it ? I heard on the news that the Belgian government is getting quite a lot of critics on the state of the roads in the country, especially after the winter period which lead to even more holes in the roads then there were already before that.

I suppose that these winter conditions didn't improve the situation either for this viaduct which indeed makes a scary impression...
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Old March 28th, 2010, 01:43 PM   #605
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About the Boirs viaduct, I came across these pics...

image hosted on flickr


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Some angry Fleming has written on the viaduct "Finish/fix this bridge, lazy Walloons!". I don't approve the language, but I can understand his frustration...
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Old March 29th, 2010, 08:02 PM   #606
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Always nice this Flemish/Walloon struggle...

The Flemish guy could have done a little effort of writing it in French, such that the Walloon workers can actually understand what he wrote...

Anyhow, this is not the way you treat your fellow countrymen. I'm sure the Walloon people living here are having a more important impact of these renovation works than the Flemish that might pass this way.
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Old March 29th, 2010, 11:08 PM   #607
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Originally Posted by crcorp View Post
Always nice this Flemish/Walloon struggle...

The Flemish guy could have done a little effort of writing it in French, such that the Walloon workers can actually understand what he wrote...

Anyhow, this is not the way you treat your fellow countrymen. I'm sure the Walloon people living here are having a more important impact of these renovation works than the Flemish that might pass this way.
I agree with your first statement, but not with your second one : most of the traffic on that piece of highway are Flemish and Dutch drivers going South, where much less Walloons are driving North. The first exit northbound of this "bridge" is already in Flanders...
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Old March 29th, 2010, 11:44 PM   #608
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
Some pics of the notorious Boirs viaduct in E313 Liège - Antwerpen.

It is in dire need of replacement, and it looks structurally unsound, although I'm not an expert on that. Let's say it doesn't look safe.
I must say that this condition is totally unacceptable for a motorway viaduct. And yes, with holes between reinforcing steel and concrete it is also structurally unsafe. Good, that Belgium is not earthquake active.
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Old March 30th, 2010, 09:16 AM   #609
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Quote:
Originally Posted by keber
Good, that Belgium is not earthquake active.
Hmm unfortunately this is not true. Earthquakes do occur in Belgium. The area called "De Peel" (stretching out over parts of north-east Belgium and south-east Netherlands) does tend to give some earthquakes from time to time. They're never extremely heavy (the heaviest one I felt when living in Maastricht back in the 90s just caused some cracks in some of the older buildings). But given the extremely bad shape of this viaduct, even such a small quake could cause really severe damage.
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Originally Posted by SkyView
(..) not with your second one : most of the traffic on that piece of highway are Flemish and Dutch drivers going South, where much less Walloons are driving North. The first exit northbound of this "bridge" is already in Flanders...
Ah yes, in that case the Flemish could be bothered more by this... anyway, they didn't yet put signs "Déviation" and "Omleiding" (Dutch/Flemish equivalent) in opposite directions... I encountered that several times in Belgium. If it were not that pathetic, you can really laugh a lot when driving there
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Old March 30th, 2010, 07:11 PM   #610
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Yeah, that viaduct has started to rot. My guess: corruption resulting in contractors that used very cheap concrete.

That's what you get when politicians only plan things they can accomplish in their reigning period. As usual, I'm afraid a bridge will have to collapse before the politicians will realise they really need to get some work done on those bridges.

In Flanders we've had a similar situation and we've learnt from it. Now Wallonia apparently first has to go through that same learning process...

More photos and information (in Dutch) can be found here: http://www.wegenforum.nl/viewtopic.php?f=216&t=10198

Apparently one of the two will be replaced by 2011, the other one by 2013... *sigh*

Greetings,
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Old April 9th, 2010, 05:34 PM   #611
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
Belgium



Belgium has a very extensive motorway system, one of the densest in the world. Most motorways are 2x3 lanes, and the amount of trucktraffic is incredible. However, traffic jams do occur often around Brussels and Antwerp.
In the French-speaking Wallonie region are less traffic jams, but mostly the right 2 lanes are taken by trucks, so traffic can be busy, especially around Liège, Namur, Charleroi and Mons.

The map above shows the A and R-3 numbers. A means Autoroute/Autosnelweg (sometimes called Autostrade), and R-numbers represent the Ringroads, which isn't nessecarily a motorway standards road.

However, in daily use, the European E-numbers are used. A numbers only appear on signs when there isn't an E-number, and A-numbers can be found on every milemarker in Belgium, despite being an E-route.

The Brussels ringroad is the R0, this is the busiest road in Belgium. Fast after that, we see the Antwerp R1, which is very busy as well, because of the lack of better ringroads around the city.

The E313 has only 2x2 lanes, and is crowded with trucks, so traffic jams in excess of 20km occur often here.


This is a map of the more daily used E-numbers.

Some Autoroutes in Wallonie do have names, like the E42 is the Autoroute de Wallonie and the E411 is the Autoroute des Ardennes. The A54 is named La Caroloregienne.

The Belgian non-motorway network is quite extensive too, sometimes with 2x2 lanes and a 120km/h limit. Some are very motorway-like, like the N25 between Louvain-la-Neuve and Nivelles, or the N97 near Dinant.

Unlike the Netherlands, Belgian cities tends to have a lot of suburbs, which create a lot of traffic. The busy Antwerp port generates a lot of truck traffic along the E19, E34 and E313.

Belgium is one of the busiest transitcountries in Europe. The quality of the roads was extremely poor a few years ago, with almost every Autoroute filled with potholes and trackformation, however, most of that has changed, but there are some worse motorways still leftover. Maintenance wasn't much of an issue the last 30 years, so there is a lot of construction to do. Motorways like the E25 and the E411 to the south are completely renovated, and of good quality now.

Chris, where did you find those maps? Are they from a government or official source? I'm particularly interested in whether there's an "official" answer about the routings of European routes in Belgium (and France) because of inconsistencies among printed maps. Must be my American obsession with route numbers. ;-)
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Old April 9th, 2010, 05:39 PM   #612
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E-routes are well signposted in Belgium. I'm not sure where this inconsistency would come from, since it's usually pretty clear how an E-route runs.

These maps are from Wikipedia.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motorways_in_Belgium
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Old April 9th, 2010, 05:48 PM   #613
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
E-routes are well signposted in Belgium. I'm not sure where this inconsistency would come from, since it's usually pretty clear how an E-route runs.

These maps are from Wikipedia.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motorways_in_Belgium
Examples:
does the E40 bypass Brussels using the Ring, or does it go in the A10, dead-end, then pick up again on the A3?
Does the E25 go into Liège on the A25, disappear, and then reappear on the A26, or does it follow the sequence (from north to south) A25, A40, A602, A26? I've seen both options for both of these instances on different maps.
In France, do the E5, E15 and E50 avoid Paris using the Francilienne (as IGN maps have it), go all the way to the Périphérique and disappear (as Michelin, and if memory serves Blay, maps show), or even actually follow the Périphérique (Google Maps)?
Again in France, the IGN road atlas shows the E21 routed over the A39 between Dijon and Bourg-en-Bresse; other maps have it going the long way, through Beaune and Mâcon.
And I've seen photos of E15 markers along the A46 east of Lyon, but every map I've seen shows it running through the city on the A6/A7.
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Old April 9th, 2010, 05:52 PM   #614
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E25 and E40 are both routed on their respective ring roads.

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Old April 9th, 2010, 06:03 PM   #615
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Originally Posted by Timon91 View Post
On the Dutch news they said that Belgium has lowered the speed limit on some motorways to 90 km/h, due to smog. By lowering the speed limit they want to prevent that the smog gets heavier.
Have they lifted the limits back to what they were?
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Old April 10th, 2010, 06:54 PM   #616
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Of course they're back to normal Such smog limitations are very temporarily and as such only for about 2 days or so. It's very easy to see when this limit is put in place because there are numerous signs saying "90" with an undersign "Smog" when this limit is active.

So if you don't see any sign saying "90" at the motorways, there's no limit. Nothing too complicated, I think.

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Old April 11th, 2010, 08:59 PM   #617
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I took the E42 this afternoon driving back to Paris and I noticed that they are starting some large-scale renovation works for a length of 10 km. It was somewhere near Namur, on the "old nostalgic concrete" section. Perhaps the concrete will finally disappear?
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Old April 11th, 2010, 09:11 PM   #618
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It's about time, E42 is one of the worst motorways in Belgium.
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Old April 11th, 2010, 09:25 PM   #619
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
It's about time, E42 is one of the worst motorways in Belgium.
Sure, but it represents also a little bit of nostalgy for me lol

So I hope they will keep at least a small strip
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Old April 21st, 2010, 11:15 AM   #620
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The Brussels road system is said to be the worst congested in Europe, according to TomTom, ahead of cities like London and Paris.

However, their methodology is slightly flawed, for example, they count something as congestion if you can't drive at least 70% of the maximum speed. This this is close to impossible on roads with traffic lights, you automatically have a lot of cities without a big freeway system high on the list. This also explains why cities like Dublin, Belfast, Warszawa and Wroclaw are in the top 10. And London, naturally.

However, Brussels congestion is fairly bad. This has a couple of reasons, the most important being that Brussels (as I've read) has the highest amount of commuters of any city in the world, relative to it's population. This is because it's Dutch-speaking commuters to not live in this French-language city and commute from outside Brussels, the so-called "edge of Brussels". Another reason is the huge amount of international institutions in the city, which attract people from a large region. E40, for example, is backed up almost from Gent, which is 50 kilometers away.

Although Brussels does have a rather well-developed urban road system with dozens of tunnels and dive-unders, the number of freeways getting into the city (inside the R0) is fairly limited, only the A3 makes it's way deep into the city.

The whole list:

1.Brussels
2.Warszawa
3.Wroclaw
4.London
5.Edinburgh
6.Dublin
7.Belfast
8.Marseille
9.Paris
10.Luxembourg
11.Milano
12.Rotterdam
13.Birmingham
14.Roma
15.Amsterdam
16.Oslo
17.Barcelona
18.Budapest
19.Napoli
20.Poznan
21.Lódz
22.Torino
23.Palermo
24.Praha
25.Genève
26.Cardiff
27.Wien
28.München
29.Leeds
30.Kraków
31.Essen
32.Hamburg
33.Lissabon
34.Sheffield
35.Stuttgart
36.Köln
37.Düsseldorf
38.Berlin
39.Tallinn
40.Helsinki
41.Nürnberg
42.Madrid
43.Frankfurt
44.Hannover
45.Glasgow
46.Bremen
47.København
48.Bratislava
49.Sevilla
50.Bern
51.Vilnius
52.Leipzig
53.Dresden
54.Dortmund
55.Málaga
56.Stockholm
57.Zagreb
58.Valencia
59.Zaragoza
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