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Old November 1st, 2013, 07:07 PM   #3461
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Originally Posted by Penn's Woods View Post
In some parts of the US, you see a sort of call button by the pumps that a disabled person or someone requiring assistance can use to get someone to come out from inside and pump their gas for them. No idea if this is a courtesy initiated by the station owners/gas companies or a legal requirement.
I don't know if you've used the NJ Turnpike, but all of the service/gas stations there have attendants to take your card and fill your tank. It must be quite a recent thing as that wasn't the case in 2011. It's quite annoying in a way because you have to wait forever until it's your turn.
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Old November 1st, 2013, 07:14 PM   #3462
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I grew up in New Jersey (and live two miles outside it now) and it's been full-service-only by law as long as I can remember. I suppose it seemed like a good idea to the Legislature at the time; now it's sort of a local quirk.

If you're saying they're only allowed to take cards, not cash, on the Turnpike, that's news to me. (Although I did buy gas on it within the last few months, but I don't remember how I paid) And if so, that would be a matter of their (the stations') own policy. Turnpike stations tend to be more expensive than those in the surrounding area, so I don't do that that often; indeed don't take the Turnpike that often unless I'm in a hurry. Most of my driving in New Jersey these days is on trips to and from my mother's, but the Turnpike's a bit out of the way for that. Most stations off the Turnpike, as I've said, charge less for cash than card purchases, so I usually pay cash in New Jersey, or else stop at a station I know doesn't do that.
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Old November 1st, 2013, 07:22 PM   #3463
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This one seems to be interesting. A41(M)



A41, 'regular' stretch. Mind, how good and smooth surface is.


Former motorway starts here.


Feature, such as hard shoulder is rather typical for motorways not regular dual carriageways.






Good quality ends up here. Interestingly, former A41(M) bit looks as if it wasn't maintained at all and comparing to the rest of A 41 is rather dull.














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Old November 1st, 2013, 07:33 PM   #3464
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Originally Posted by Penn's Woods View Post
I grew up in New Jersey (and live two miles outside it now) and it's been full-service-only by law as long as I can remember. I suppose it seemed like a good idea to the Legislature at the time; now it's sort of a local quirk.

If you're saying they're only allowed to take cards, not cash, on the Turnpike, that's news to me. (Although I did buy gas on it within the last few months, but I don't remember how I paid) And if so, that would be a matter of their (the stations') own policy. Turnpike stations tend to be more expensive than those in the surrounding area, so I don't do that that often; indeed don't take the Turnpike that often unless I'm in a hurry. Most of my driving in New Jersey these days is on trips to and from my mother's, but the Turnpike's a bit out of the way for that. Most stations off the Turnpike, as I've said, charge less for cash than card purchases, so I usually pay cash in New Jersey, or else stop at a station I know doesn't do that.
They took either cards or cash, but I always use my card anyway. Point was I'd never seen that before and on such a large scale because those gas stations are big. I can't remember the specific service station as it could have been one of maybe 3 in an 80 mile stretch, but I have stopped at 2 and both had the same feature. The biggest problem was the traffic congestion it was causing but being lazy, it was nice to not to have to get out the car.

On another note, I wonder how the widening is going. It's been a year since I last drove that route.
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Old November 1st, 2013, 09:18 PM   #3465
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Originally Posted by piotr71 View Post
This one seems to be interesting. A41(M)
Would have run from Hunton Bridge (M25 J19), and likely Berrygrove (M1 J5), to just past Tring - a commuter motorway pushed by Herts County Council, who wanted all trunk corridors in the county to be at least dual carriageway and bypassing towns.

The A5 and A6 were dealt with quickly (via the M1 St Albans bypass), the A1 had a lot done early, but Hatfield remained a problem until 1986. 1986 was also the year that they sorted out the North Orbital - how they were going to do it flitted between several options, and the M25 route eventually won.

However, 1986 was about when they realised that they weren't going to be able to build the A41(M) as motorway, so in 1987 the Tring bypass was downgraded.

Herts CC and HMG didn't see the A41(M) as anything other than a commuter route, serving the towns along it and Aylesbury. Bucks took a long time coming around to an Aston Clinton bypass, and the value of serving the A41 east of Aylesbury with an Aylesbury bypass was only as it had slightly more through traffic than the West (neither that high).
Quote:
Good quality ends up here. Interestingly, former A41(M) bit looks as if it wasn't maintained at all and comparing to the rest of A 41 is rather dull.
It's about 20 years older ('73 v '93) - that's why. Plus also the hard shoulder on the A41(ex-M) has been left to rot, giving a shabbier appearance.
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Old November 1st, 2013, 09:52 PM   #3466
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Ok. But It does not change the fact that the rest of A41, actually most of, have its surface replaced recently or being replaced currently. Only left over part is former A41(M) as if it belonged to a different world.
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Old November 2nd, 2013, 02:11 PM   #3467
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Originally Posted by piotr71 View Post
Ok. But It does not change the fact that the rest of A41, actually most of, have its surface replaced recently or being replaced currently. Only left over part is former A41(M) as if it belonged to a different world.
Again, the age difference does matter.

Lets say, hypothetically, the Tarmac lasts 15 years: the Tring bypass would have been resurfaced in '88 and '03. The rest of the route would have been resurfaced in '08 - it would be half the age of the surface on the Tring bypass.

Tarmac on roads like the A41 lasts longer than that though and neither section has been resurfaced in my memory (going back 15 years), save some patches, and areas near the tighter junctions getting grippy tarmac. You could have said exactly the same thing 10 years ago, because nothing has changed other than the roads have gotten 10 years older!

The 40 year old Tring bypass is nearly life-expired. A reconstruction would be needed and a mere resurfacing wouldn't be enough. If Herts had money, they'd do it in the Spring, but it can hold out some more, and no local government has spare cash, so they won't...

If they are currently resurfacing the whole road, they there is no reason why they won't do the Tring section - its just that they haven't got to it yet and it would need more work. I'd be very surprised if they are, as 1) Winter is Coming, and you don't resurface just before the cold comes to muck about with surfaces 2) it's probably too cold already to lay tarmac 3) the '93 section is perfectly fine with '93 vintage tarmac for the medium term.

Even with a decent surface, an early 70s road will look older than an early 90s road. This is because surface isn't everything - landscaping, alignment, etc would all add to the age of the road. The A41(M) also has the bonus of completely unmaintained hard shoulders with no weeding.

Last edited by sotonsi; November 2nd, 2013 at 02:17 PM.
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Old November 2nd, 2013, 03:09 PM   #3468
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I know what you mean buddy and, believe me or not, I can count, add numbers and also put together some facts to make a continuous story.

I asked my question because of that:

a) about 10-13 miles before Tiring by-pass.




b) Tiring by-pass. Good tarmac ends where the by-pass begins.


c) Good surface appears just about where the by-pass ends...


...and lasts to Aylesbury.


Believe me or not again, but I have no problem with that. I am just curious what's they schedule. Why resurfacing works has been carried out on both ends of the former motorway but have not touched that stretch itself.

That's the wrong assumption:

Quote:
1) Winter is Coming, and you don't resurface just before the cold comes to muck about with surfaces 2) it's probably too cold already to lay tarmac 3) the '93 section is perfectly fine with '93 vintage tarmac for the medium term.
There has been hundreds of miles of roads undergoing resurfacing works and many of them have started recently (I mean yesterday, last week or last fortnight)

By the way, recently widened part of M25 between M40 and M1 would need resurfacing soon. It's in really bad condition and may become impassable after winter.
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Old November 2nd, 2013, 04:17 PM   #3469
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I didn't realize that the A41 was such an impressive looking highway. I think they decommissioned the A41(M) a long time ago. Maybe the original intention was to make the entire route from Tring to Watford motorway standard? You're right that the former A41(M) section looks worse than the part that was never built to motorway standard (despite the parking stops and no hard shoulder).

Lovely scenery too Piotr. I forget how gorgeous England looks in nice weather.

Oh and assuming these are your photos, one road I used to enjoy driving on was the A55 North Wales Expressway. It was being upgraded last time I drove it which was probably late 90's, so I'd be keen to see some real life pics from it now.
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Old November 2nd, 2013, 05:46 PM   #3470
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Quote:
Originally Posted by piotr71 View Post
I know what you mean buddy and, believe me or not, I can count, add numbers and also put together some facts to make a continuous story.
But you miss what I was saying entirely.
Quote:
a) about 10-13 miles before Tiring by-pass
Opened '93, though it does look a bit newer than last time I went that way - looking, I find some references to some parts being resurfaced (for the first time) in the summer.
Quote:
b) Tiring by-pass. Good tarmac ends where the by-pass begins.
Opened '73 so twice as old - AFAICS it was resurfaced about '90 (as Hard Shoulders different). Actually, looking on Herts Direct they resurfaced at least parts of it in during the summer*, so I don't know what you are talking about!

*I don't use that bit that often as it's out of the way from where I live.
Quote:
c) Good surface appears just about where the by-pass ends...
...and lasts to Aylesbury
Opened '03 - that Tarmac is original and has not been redone (I follow the Bucks Roadworks news page).
Quote:
Why resurfacing works has been carried out on both ends of the former motorway but have not touched that stretch itself.
Because they did the former motorway in the summer? Or waiting for more money to be found this March to do the job that needs to be done properly.

Old roads, even after a resurfacing, will continue to look older than newer counterparts anyway, especially if they have an unmaintained original-tarmac hard shoulder.
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Old November 2nd, 2013, 09:45 PM   #3471
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A45 Northampton by-pass.

Ok, you are right.


=======
This is one of a very few dual carriageways in Britain, not countig those going through tunnels, which has a limitation of use for all vehicles not able to exceed 25 miles an hour speed.

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Old November 5th, 2013, 08:35 PM   #3472
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Mersey Gateway

http://www.merseygateway.co.uk/

There's a new six-lane toll bridge planned across the river Mersey near Runcorn (not far from Liverpool). It will open in 2017.

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Old November 5th, 2013, 09:25 PM   #3473
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Something about the A41(M) - sorry, I don't remember the source; I think it is cbrd.co.uk.

A41(M)

A mostly unbuilt motorway, proposed in the 1960’s by the Ministry of Transport, which came to be a vital part of the outer Ringway proposals despite it being mostly of local or regional importance. While plans reached a very advanced stage, to the extent that they were marked on Ordnance Survey 1:50,000 mapping (an honour usually reserved for schemes that are nothing short of dead certain), nothing of the route was ever built in its intended form except for one short bypass far from London. But since its cancellation, the need for the road turned out to be so great that a fast expressway on the same line was built in the 1990’s.

Entering London from the north-west, the A41(M) would have started out in rural Hertfordshire on the A41 between Aston Clinton and Tring. The first section, the Tring Bypass, was built and opened as an isolated section of A41(M) in the 1970’s. Beyond here, it would have run south-eastward, providing bypasses for the towns of Berkhamsted, Hemel Hempstead and Kings Langley.

At Hunton Bridge Roundabout, the A41(M) would have passed across the top of the junction on a flyover, with the roundabout providing connections to local roads (including the existing A41) and serving as the abrupt terminus of the M25, which formed the Western Section of Ringway 4. Eastward from here there is little evidence to work with, but the most likely outcome would be for the A41(M) to continue as a motorway upgrade of the existing A41 dual carriageway around the north side of Watford to terminate on the M1 somewhere in the vicinity of present-day junction 5.

At Leavesden, the Ringway 4 North Orbital Road would have terminated. Through journeys on Ringway 4 would have used a short section of A41(M) to travel between the Western Section and North Orbital Road.

Though it has been discussed and documented many times (even published in books), the A41(M) is nothing whatsoever to do with the erstwhile M41. The former is the Watford to Tring motorway described above; the latter was the "temporary" number assigned to the short section of Ringway 1's West Cross Route that was built and opened. The claim, which originated in an authoritative-sounding post on the internet was that the M41 and A41(M) Tring Bypass were part of the same proposed road and would have been linked to form a London to Birmingham motorway. This is untrue, and the author of that Usenet post has since made clear that it was conjecture, not fact. The similar numbers of the two roads (and their vaguely similar alignments) are probably coincidental: the A41(M)'s official name was the "Watford to Tring Motorway", while the M41 number is listed in goverment documentation as a "temporary number". The West Cross Route would not have extended further north than Kensal Green and the A41(M) would not have extended beyond Tring, stopping just before the border with Buckinghamshire.

A start was made on the A41(M) back in 1973, when the Tring Bypass was opened. Some fairly switched-on local councillor or MP must have pestered the Ministry long enough to get that section pushed through early, while the rest of the road remained in the planning stage. These two miles of two-lane motorway, far from any other high-standard road, looked quite odd in road atlases for many years until they were downgraded in 1986, when any chance of the rest of the road being built seemed to have vanished.

Some ten years later, that decision proved short-sighted when traffic on the A41 had become quite unbearable and work got under way to build the present A41 dual carriageway, a dual two-lane grade separated route that follows the line of the original motorway plan. However, the current road ends at the M25 and gets nowhere near funnelling traffic onto the M1. It is also built to a lower specification, with no hard shoulders and substandard junction designs.
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Old November 5th, 2013, 10:39 PM   #3474
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A 419 'Autumn'





























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Old November 5th, 2013, 10:55 PM   #3475
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A nice road that, although one I've unfortunately always associated with work
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Old November 6th, 2013, 03:04 PM   #3476
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
http://www.merseygateway.co.uk/

There's a new six-lane toll bridge planned across the river Mersey near Runcorn (not far from Liverpool). It will open in 2017.
Disgracefully tolling the existing bridge that it is relieving, due to not wanting a reasonable alternative route (especially given it is the aim to relieve that alternative). One hopes that Halton BC residents will get a heavy discount!
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Originally Posted by ea1969 View Post
Something about the A41(M) - sorry, I don't remember the source; I think it is cbrd.co.uk.
It is.
Quote:
in rural Hertfordshire on the A41 between Aston Clinton and Tring.
Actually until a boundary review that moved the border to follow the motorway (and the roundabout at the end of it), the western end was in Buckinghamshire. There's an old OS Map on www.pathetic.org.uk which shows the county boundary crossing the motorway.
Quote:
Eastward from here there is little evidence to work with, but the most likely outcome would be for the A41(M) to continue as a motorway upgrade of the existing A41 dual carriageway around the north side of Watford to terminate on the M1 somewhere in the vicinity of present-day junction 5.
That section lasted a long time, being partially to blame for the lack of south-facing slip roads at the M1/M25 junction.
Quote:
the A41(M) would not have extended beyond Tring, stopping just before the border with Buckinghamshire.
Despite the Tring bypass entering Bucks when built, Bucks archives have no reference to the A41(M) (I doubt the council was clever enough to transfer files relating to areas handed over to other counties - after all they have Slough bypass and Windsor & Eton relief road documents. In fact it wasn't until the late 80s that Bucks even acted on the 50 year complaints of Aston Clinton residents and proposed building a bypass - mostly to tie in the dual carriageway to the Oxford-East Coast Ports road, and didn't get further than a dashed line 'possible connection'. Then, when all hope of the East Coast Ports route being built from Puckeridge to Wheatley (or Bicester), Bucks actually came up with plans for bypassing Aston Clinton.
Quote:
downgraded in 1986
1987, but when Chris wrote that, there wasn't an online searchable database of SIs that went back that far.
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Old November 6th, 2013, 10:38 PM   #3477
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A5, Weedon-Milton Keynes (part1)

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Old November 10th, 2013, 12:57 PM   #3478
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M1, traffic management.

In this short video we can watch how traffic managed part of M1 works. It's about 16:20 hrs and traffic grows significantly around Luton. As far as I know, improvement was carried out on this stretch mainly to ease congestion during busy periods, because of the limited capacity of M1, designed in fifties. So, they implemented hard shoulder running to reduce congestion by increasing road capacity and variable speed limits, which works together with induction loops beneath the surface of the road, which are to detect traffic flow and with sophisticated matrix system, which is to inform drives . Everything sounds brilliantly, however, there is one 'but'. I drive there from time to time and I noticed that they open the additional shoulder lane much too late. It's also in use long after congestion ends, when the traffic may easily fit in 3 lanes. As it is seen on the video traffic stops and goes but pictograms on the matrixes still don't allow for using running shoulder.


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Old November 10th, 2013, 04:45 PM   #3479
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Quote:
Originally Posted by piotr71 View Post
In this short video we can watch how traffic managed part of M1 works. It's about 16:20 hrs and traffic grows significantly around Luton. As far as I know, improvement was carried out on this stretch mainly to ease congestion during busy periods, because of the limited capacity of M1, designed in fifties. So, they implemented hard shoulder running to reduce congestion by increasing road capacity and variable speed limits, which works together with induction loops beneath the surface of the road, which are to detect traffic flow and with sophisticated matrix system, which is to inform drives . Everything sounds brilliantly, however, there is one 'but'. I drive there from time to time and I noticed that they open the additional shoulder lane much too late. It's also in use long after congestion ends, when the traffic may easily fit in 3 lanes. As it is seen on the video traffic stops and goes but pictograms on the matrixes still don't allow for using running shoulder.


I don't like the hard shoulder running thing. Hard shoulders were put there for a reason. It seems dangerous. What happens if you break down? It's not like an A-road dual carriageway where at least you wouldn't have so many vehicles traveling at high speed.

On another note, I grew up in Luton before moving to the Midlands. Both my brothers were born in Luton & Dunstable Hospital which is on the right side of the A505 in this clip. Still looks exactly the same as it did in the mid 90's.
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Old November 10th, 2013, 06:30 PM   #3480
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It's not like an A-road dual carriageway where at least you wouldn't have so many vehicles traveling at high speed.
Like the A1, A2 and A14?
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