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Old August 15th, 2011, 02:12 AM   #1641
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True. But they were taking the p*ss with the A25. State owned roads are generally not all that bad. The second worst road has to be the A6 between Peage and Paris. In my experience anyway.
A 47 between Lyon and St Etienne is also one of the worst motorway in France, it was also the case for A 35 in Alsace but fortunately some works were done, even if there is still a section north of Colmar which is not classified as motorway
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Old August 15th, 2011, 12:51 PM   #1642
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A35 is bad indeed.. but it's toll free. I was wondering, are the companys of motorways in France state owned or private? http://www.autoroutes.fr/fr/les-soci...autoroutes.htm
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Old August 15th, 2011, 01:00 PM   #1643
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Private as far as I'm aware...
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Old August 15th, 2011, 03:16 PM   #1644
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My understanding is they are, or were, partially state-owned. The government may have privatized its share. A little digging on the Internet, if you can read French, should answer that. (www.autoroutes.fr, if memory serves, is sort of the central web site for the autoroute companies in France - it has an English version - but also Wikipedia articles, or the French roads wiki routes.wikia.com....)

How did that happen anyway? Why do some European countries have free (well, taxpayer-funded, I assume) freeways and others are so reliant on expensive toll roads? I'd sort of expect western European countries to have developed similar ways of going about this. Do people from Germany or the Benelux going to or passing through France complain about having to pay so much to use the roads?

Just curious.
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Old August 15th, 2011, 03:29 PM   #1645
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France has the largest paved road network in Europe, over 1 million kilometers of road. The state has a huge task to maintain them, and generally they are in reasonable to good shape, except in some remote or poorer areas like northern France. The French started to create concessionairs in the 1960's to build and operate the first toll roads, such as A7 from Lyon to Marseille. Most were privatized, some very recently (in the past decade).

The French tolls are generally seen as high, and there are many people shunpiking. However, while the alternate routes are sometimes of high standard, it takes about a day more if you want to travel to southern France from the Low Countries and Germany by national roads. So most people pay it anyway. The French toll roads are generally of superb quality and are - apart from a few busy weekends - generally congestion free. A common trip from Nancy to Perpignan costs about $ 90 in tolls one way. So if you want to go to the Costa Brava from the Netherlands or Germany, you have to expect to pay at least $ 200 in tolls back and forth.
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Old August 15th, 2011, 08:50 PM   #1646
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since when you use dollars as a currency?

I guess motorways would be in worse shape if there weren't so many private companies owning them. but I agree a huge + of toll roads is that they are congestion free, unlike Germany.
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Old August 15th, 2011, 10:00 PM   #1647
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
France has the largest paved road network in Europe, over 1 million kilometers of road. The state has a huge task to maintain them, and generally they are in reasonable to good shape, except in some remote or poorer areas like northern France. The French started to create concessionairs in the 1960's to build and operate the first toll roads, such as A7 from Lyon to Marseille. Most were privatized, some very recently (in the past decade).

The French tolls are generally seen as high, and there are many people shunpiking. However, while the alternate routes are sometimes of high standard, it takes about a day more if you want to travel to southern France from the Low Countries and Germany by national roads. So most people pay it anyway. The French toll roads are generally of superb quality and are - apart from a few busy weekends - generally congestion free. A common trip from Nancy to Perpignan costs about $ 90 in tolls one way. So if you want to go to the Costa Brava from the Netherlands or Germany, you have to expect to pay at least $ 200 in tolls back and forth.
I hope that no one with a right mind from Holland uses the Dijon-Lyon route, when there is a perfectly good route via Paris and Clermont-Ferrand. Shorther in distance, and between Clermont and Montpellier completely toll-free apart from the 5 euros for the Millau Bridge. I use the A75 all the time since they've completed that bridge, the A75 is nice and quiet, and it runs through one of the most beautiful regions of France: The Auvergne and Massif Central.
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Old August 15th, 2011, 11:51 PM   #1648
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Quote:
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True. But they were taking the p*ss with the A25. State owned roads are generally not all that bad. The second worst road has to be the A6 between Peage and Paris. In my experience anyway.
Yes there is a particularly bad 10-km stretch in the southern suburbs south of Evry. The right lane isn't as bad as the two others though. You better keep right if you have a noisy car.


There used to be a similar stretch on A4 in the Paris suburbs too iirc.

But I guess huge toll fees are even more pain in the ass than such roads. Shunpiking ftw.
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Old August 16th, 2011, 12:35 AM   #1649
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You've hit the nail right on the head, that is exactly the one I meant.
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Old August 16th, 2011, 09:28 PM   #1650
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I wonder if this horrible pavement was put here to slow down cars?
The A2 near the belgian border is also pretty bad, worse than the A47.
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Old August 16th, 2011, 09:44 PM   #1651
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I wonder if this horrible pavement was put here to slow down cars?
The A2 near the belgian border is also pretty bad, worse than the A47.
At Valenciennes? I don't find it all that bad...
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Old August 22nd, 2011, 12:48 AM   #1652
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Video of the A16 Boulogne - Calais, northern France, some parts have a nice scenery!
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Old August 23rd, 2011, 01:14 AM   #1653
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What is wrong with a31?

Just drove there from Nancy to the Luxembourguese border.

- really bad pavement before Loraine border and around Metz

- absolutely no 130km/h sector wwhatsoever (and I am not talking of temp/variable signs!!)

- 7-19h blank ban on trucks overtakiing

- it is worse than N57 épernai Nancy
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Old August 23rd, 2011, 01:19 AM   #1654
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We're trying to prevent a Luxembourgian invasion.
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Old August 23rd, 2011, 01:26 AM   #1655
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My dad always used to drive between 100 and 110 with a caravan.
Crazy Dutch people and their caravans!

2 years ago in southern Morocco I met this retired Dutch couple who were returning from Ghana with their caravan. During the entire dinner they only talked about "French colonialism" this, "French colonialism" that.
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Old August 23rd, 2011, 01:40 AM   #1656
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I use the A75 all the time since they've completed that bridge, the A75 is nice and quiet, and it runs through one of the most beautiful regions of France: The Auvergne and Massif Central.
The section between Clermont-Ferrand and Issoire is horrendous though. Sharp turns after sharp turns, very dangerous, all that due to stupid ex-president Giscard d'Estaing who didn't want a motorway near his property up on the plateau, so they used the old winding road in the gorges of the river.
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Old August 23rd, 2011, 09:26 AM   #1657
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That's only a small section though. Shame they've put so many speed camera's on that stretch. I love cruisin' over bendy motorways. A3 between Würzburg and Aschaffenburg is a joy to drive on. Same goes for the AP-8 in northern Spain, Italian A10/A12 around Genova and the A1 between Bologna and Florence.
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Old August 23rd, 2011, 09:30 AM   #1658
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Have you ever driven on Italian A15 Parma-La Spezia? In terms of bendy motorways I find it more fascinating than the Bologna-Florence.
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Old August 23rd, 2011, 10:40 AM   #1659
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No I don't think I have. I had to think there for a minute and got confused with the A11 Viaréggio-Florence, which is not that bendy. How am I doing with this phone anyway? I'm back on the road now, currently in Holland, heading for England later. I miss my Zillertal mountains already. By the way Chris: these new roadsigns in Holland suck big time!
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Old August 23rd, 2011, 01:39 PM   #1660
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what phone is that?
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