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Old June 21st, 2010, 06:27 PM   #641
mapman:cz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
What would this topic be without us Dutchmen
I was wondering too, but since Vlaams Gewest might join Nederland, it is clearly forseeable, guys

Besides my likely-funny comment, is it really possible for Belgium to split?
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Old June 21st, 2010, 07:24 PM   #642
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Possibly. But I don't see Flanders joining the Netherlands. They're mature enough to run their own country. Belgium is the most segregated country in Western Europe probably. They don't watch the same TV, don't listen to the same music, almost never have family in the other constituency, often don't speak each others language, don't read the same papers, have separate government and institutions, and are working with a 50-year old administrative language divide that is not according to today's reality. Basically, it's a miracle it's still one country...
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Old June 21st, 2010, 07:38 PM   #643
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Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
Possibly. But I don't see Flanders joining the Netherlands. They're mature enough to run their own country. Belgium is the most segregated country in Western Europe probably. They don't watch the same TV, don't listen to the same music, almost never have family in the other constituency, often don't speak each others language, don't read the same papers, have separate government and institutions, and are working with a 50-year old administrative language divide that is not according to today's reality. Basically, it's a miracle it's still one country...
But the geography of the middle of the country (Brussels: historically Dutch-speaking, theoretically bilingual, currently mostly French-speaking but the Flemish consider it their capital....surrounded by some suburbs that are officially Dutch-speaking (and under Flemish jurisdiction) but in fact mostly French-speaking, and many more places that are likewise officially Dutch-speaking (and Flemish) but in the process of becoming suburbs of Brussels (or already there) with French-speaking minorities) is such a mess. The current crisis started because the francophones and Flemish couldn't - still can't - agree to split up an electoral district that covers all this area. I don't see how the exercise would be any easier if they were no longer talking about electoral boundaries but an international border. (Yes, "Flanders" could probably do all right on its own. But where do we even draw its borders? Does it take Brussels and the disputed suburbs? It presumably would want to, but most of their inhabitants would likely feel otherwise....)

I'm not Belgian, so it's none of my business. But I've spent time there and was very taken by the mixing of cultures and languages, and so I stay on top of its news. If I were Belgian I'd be enthusiastically in favor of the country's staying together, and doing everything I could, personally, to understand "the other side" - being able to understand the media of the other half of the country would seem to me to be reason enough to learn its language. Since I'm not Belgian, I'll just limit myself to saying I wish the country and its people well....
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Old June 21st, 2010, 07:43 PM   #644
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Brussels is theoretically bilingual Dutch and French, but I've read somewhere the amount of non-Dutch and non-French speaking population is pretty high. Almost all people who could afford it have left Brussels for the suburbs (hence the Frenchification of that area), and have been replaced by immigrants (mostly from Northern Africa I believe) who do not always speak French either.
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Old June 21st, 2010, 07:53 PM   #645
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Splitting up Belgium would cause more troubles than only in and around Brussels. There are areas which belong to Flanders of Wallonia but the majority of Dutch- of Frenchspeaking people is not that big (like Komen/Comines and Voeren/Fourons).

And to be more ontopic: Imagine what a split would cause for some roads. Try to find the linguistic border and the Motorway A3/E40 between Leuven and Liege. Or the A25/E25 immidiately after the Dutch/Belgian border. And there are more examples which should not cause any problem if both new countries would join Schengen, but if they don't, travelling would be quite complicated.

Anyway, I like driving in Belgium and for a non-Belgian like me the linguistic border is very interesting.
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Old June 21st, 2010, 11:18 PM   #646
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*If* Belgium would ever split, it'd still be several years from now on. Keep in mind that the majority still votes against a split if you look at the parties that have been voted on.

It is true though, I can't think of any other country where two parts of the country are so different than what we have here. About not speaking eachother's language: I've recently noticed a change in behaviours by our southern neighbours - in the way that they try to speak Dutch to me. I'm certain not all is lost. It's just a shame that the opinions in how to tackle issues have to be so big.


I'd like to say thanks to the Dutch for keeping our topic up to date. I'm not enough on the road to take pictures and I usually don't have the time to take pictures anyway.

Also some news: a motorway is going to be extended: http://www.nieuwsblad.be/article/det...cleid=292RPERL (in Dutch)

Greetings,
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Old June 22nd, 2010, 08:58 AM   #647
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glodenox View Post
Also some news: a motorway is going to be extended: http://www.nieuwsblad.be/article/det...cleid=292RPERL (in Dutch)

Greetings,
Glodenox
It's not clear to me from the article what's going on: they're building the A11 from Bruges to Knokke? (Where's the Blauwe Toren?) The last map I have (a 2009 Michelin sheet 533) shows the A11 running from Antwerp to a point east of Zelzate. What about the segment between Zelzate and Knokke? Is that road (the N49) good enough that it could just have its number changed to A11 (or E34)? Does it need to be upgraded? Is my map out of date?
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Old June 22nd, 2010, 02:43 PM   #648
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I'm not familiar with the area, but from the text I think they're referring to the section starting from here: http://maps.google.be/?ll=51.258182,...55704&t=h&z=15 towards the N49 to the northeast.

Greetings,
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Old June 22nd, 2010, 03:43 PM   #649
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
Another video: E42 in eastern Belgium.

What is the name of viaduct in the end of Chris film? It looks quite interesting to me.
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Old June 22nd, 2010, 04:14 PM   #650
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That a high-speed rail viaduct.
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Old June 22nd, 2010, 09:28 PM   #651
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
That a high-speed rail viaduct.
I know this is viaduct for high speed rail because of your text comments during the film, but I thought perhaps it had a name like "Milau" in France.
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Old June 23rd, 2010, 12:58 PM   #652
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The E314 between Aarschot and Diest has been renewed (by the new standards): it now is the best stretch of highway in Belgium. I was impressed by the quality. Looks promising for the future.

Last edited by Thermo; June 23rd, 2010 at 01:04 PM.
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Old June 23rd, 2010, 01:13 PM   #653
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Quote:
Originally Posted by msz2 View Post
I know this is viaduct for high speed rail because of your text comments during the film, but I thought perhaps it had a name like "Milau" in France.
Info about the entire high speed line (all "will"s and "is going to"s can be replaced by "are"s, so the project is completely finished now).

http://www.tucrail.be/EN/projects/Na...s/HSLeast.aspx

Extract for the bridges:

Quote:
Between this residential area and the plateau of Herve, the HSL runs through the so-called Soumagne tunnel. In this 6.2km long tunnel, maximum speed will be 200 km/h.

At the end of the tunnel at Ayeneux (municipality of Soumagne) the HSL is crossing small valleys and regional roads in a densely populated environment. A great number of cut and cover tunnels, open tunnels, underpasses and viaducts have been built in this area.

From José (municipality of Herve), the HSL is running along the E40 again. A 405m long viaduct has been constructed here, almost parallel to the motorway interchange. Between José and Welkenraedt a 470m long viaduct (at Herve) and a 1,300m long viaduct (in order to cross the Battice interchange) have been built.
So I think it's "Viaduc de Battice"


edit: yup: http://www.valens.eu/nl/pages/e/e11.html
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Old June 28th, 2010, 12:41 PM   #654
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E 40 Belgium

Here you have a bunch of photos showing beautiful E40 international road cutting Belgium.


1

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15


I posted more pics in Polish section:
http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showth...504499&page=23 from post 453.
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Old June 28th, 2010, 04:46 PM   #655
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Hi. Where was picture no. 8 taken - the one where you choose between going left for Leuven and Liège and going right for Brussels?

If that's where I think it is - the ramp from the ring to the E40/A3? - it goes to something I was remarking about a few weeks ago. It's unclear to me how the European routes are routed around Brussels. Some maps show them going into the city, ending apparently, and picking up on the other side. Others show them going around the Ring (which seems to me to make more sense, but I'm an American who's used to relying on route numbers in navigating). Someone posted a Google map showing the E40 using the Ring and said something to the effect of, it seems perfectly clear that that's what they do). As I've said, I've seen both routings on printed maps, and that sign seems to have the E40 going into the city....

Same problem in the Paris area, where IGN maps show the E5, E15, E50 using the Francilienne to avoid the city and other maps show them going to the Périphérique. (Google Maps actually shows them using the Périphérique....)
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Old June 28th, 2010, 06:24 PM   #656
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Hi. Where was picture no. 8 taken - the one where you choose between going left for Leuven and Liège and going right for Brussels?
Here: http://maps.google.nl/?ie=UTF8&ll=50...,0.002358&z=19
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Old June 28th, 2010, 06:38 PM   #657
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Thanks. That's where I thought it was. My exchange with Chris about E-numbers (I looked it up, obsessive-compulsively...) was in this thread on April 9. That "Brussel E40" sign seems to contradict other signage that has the E40 going around the Ring.
I guess it's not the most important issue in the world, but if you were trying to make an accurate map....
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Old June 28th, 2010, 07:43 PM   #658
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I think that the E40 goes trough the city, officially. The ring motorway has R0 as route number.
However the cars are routed via the ring, so that's why they put the E40 sign directing the cars over the R0 to the "direction" of E40 Leuven - Liège, for example.

In other words, the sign should be read as follows:" people who want to go to the E411 direction Namur or the E40 direction Liége exit here".
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Old June 28th, 2010, 09:09 PM   #659
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In Belgium you cannot see whether the E-route is direct or indirect signed.
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Old June 28th, 2010, 09:15 PM   #660
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In Belgium you cannot see whether the E-route is direct or indirect signed.
Not sure what you mean by that. I have noticed that the route numbers are sort of associated with destinations ("Namur E411," "Liège E40"...). And Europe doesn't really do reassurance markers the way the US does....
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