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Old September 16th, 2010, 06:57 PM   #401
Rebasepoiss
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Another thing that has to go is the requirement for motorways to be fully lit. Considering the current electricity prices, environmental concerns and traffic densities in Estonia(especially at night), this is just plain stupidity.
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Old September 16th, 2010, 10:26 PM   #402
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In UK lot of motorways are not lit. I think same in Sweden. so why in Estonia?
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Old September 18th, 2010, 02:14 AM   #403
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I agree, continuous lighting is superfluous.

The lawmakers have taken an overly cautious approach when working out motorway standards. But most probably there are other (Northern) European countries, too, that have mandated illuminated motorways; it's unlikely that Estonian legislators came up with that requirement all by themselves.

(However, lighting at junctions and interchanges is very useful and should still be required, I believe; not only for motorways, but for all 2x2 roads.)


Two more interesting aspects about E263 Kose-Mäo project that I found in the documentation:

* Median will be filled with shrubs. A very good idea, in my opinion; avoids blinding. I am actually starting to think that a narrow median (as per 1st class highway standards) might possibly be a safer and better solution than a motorway-class wide median


* Preliminary project draft called for five ecoducts (total length of the new road is about 40 km). Since these are expensive facilities and none have been constructed in Estonia so far, only two will be initially built. Sites of remaining three ecoducts will be simply left unfenced, allowing wildlife to freely cross the road. These crossings will be monitored and studied to see which locations would need additional ecoducts. To provide some safety, crossings will be equipped with animal sensors and warning lights for drivers.

So, basically, E263 will have zebra crossings for animals, without the zebras
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Old September 18th, 2010, 04:30 AM   #404
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Quote:
Originally Posted by albeva View Post
In UK lot of motorways are not lit. I think same in Sweden. so why in Estonia?
The same in western Canada. Once past the municipal boundary, that's the end of the lighting. Smaller communities may, or may not have lighting. Aside from interchanges, there's no lighting.
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Old September 18th, 2010, 06:53 PM   #405
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grisent View Post
(However, lighting at junctions and interchanges is very useful and should still be required, I believe; not only for motorways, but for all 2x2 roads.)
And it is required:
Quote:
8.3. Valgustus

(1) Maanteevalgustus peab tagama ohutu liikluse keerukatel ja suure liiklussagedusega teelõikudel.

(2) Kiirteedele kogu ulatuses ja I klassi maanteede ristmike ning bussipeatuste piirkonda tuleb projekteerida valgustussüsteem.

(3) II ja III klassi maantee ühetasandilisel ristmikul ja maantee lõikumisel raudteega peab igal harul olema projekteeritud valgustussüsteem vähemalt 250 m ulatuses. Kui valgustusega naaberlõikude vahe jääb alla 250 m, tuleb kavandada katkematu valgustus.
All requirements for building roads and highways in Estonia can be found here: http://www.riigiteataja.ee/ert/act.jsp?id=26215
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Old September 18th, 2010, 09:18 PM   #406
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Fantastic place
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Old September 19th, 2010, 12:57 AM   #407
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I felt like posting some signage photos again, haven't done that for a while.

Here's a variety of roundabout signs -- from Tallinn and elsewhere.


Near Viljandi, in southern Estonia. Intersection of T49 and T92 (the latter of which is a trunk route, despite an unusual number).



Saku, a settlement 16 km south of Tallinn. T11340 passing through the settlement. Arrow layout is a bit unusual.



Another roundabout on the same road, about a kilometre further.



T11 Tallinn bypass westbound, approaching the settlement of Jüri.



And a couple of roundabouts within Jüri itself:





T11 Tallinn bypass eastbound, approaching T2/E263. My special interest, the old typeface again :-)



T11106 in Kuusalu, at an E20 junction.



And a couple of examples from Tallinn as well. Tallinn's signage has slightly more design variations, and the look is much less uniform.

Haabersti roundabout, a big hub for commuter traffic, long overdue for reconstruction.

There were other similar roundabouts in Tallinn during Soviet times, but all achieved their peak capacity long ago and were converted into traffic-lights-controlled intersections. (Sõpruse-Endla-Tulika intersection was rebuilt somewhere in the 80's if I remember correctly; and Ülemiste intersection, formerly 2 roundabouts, was rebuilt as late as 1998).

Haabersti, however, missed the intermediate step of being rebuilt into an intersection. It is to become a grade-separated, 3-level interchange (an overpass, an underpass, and a roundabout inbetween), but as an expensive project, it has been pushed around and postponed a lot.

And just as the roundabout is quite inadequate itself, signage was pretty much on the same level. The sign below is the first modern one (I think there aren't any similar ones on other approach directions, yet), but rather overdone. I'd say a sign of such complexity should at least be repeated; moreover, that particular one is obscured by trees and seen only shortly before passing it.



An example from Lasnamäe. Strange layout, with unusual proportions. Oh, and the exit to the right is "wishful thinking" - it does not exist. At all. That side of the roundabout is fenced.



Somebody has experimented with tangential arrows, instead of radial ones It makes kind of sense when you think about it, but... come on.

In the background you can see lane guidance signs that are now becoming a standard on most multi-lane roundabouts.



Roundabout on Tehnika tn. extension. In another thread, Rebasepoiss posted a very nice aerial photo of the same roundabout.



Viimsi, a settlement directly next to, and a de facto suburb of, Tallinn


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Old October 1st, 2010, 07:47 PM   #408
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Today Mäp bypass was officially opened. Unfortunately the photos were made a bit earlier so everything hasn't been done yet.

Interchange between T2/T5, looking towards Tallinn. (T2 is below)


Interchange between T2/T5, looking towards Tallinn(T2 is below)


Interchange between T2/T5, looking towards Tartu(T2 is below)


Interchange between T2/T5, looking towards Tartu.


Interchange between T2/T5, looking towards Tartu.


A rather small interchange at the southern part of the bypass. It enables you to go towards Mäo when coming from Tartu.


Aerial of the T5 right next to the T2/T5 interchange. T2 is under the overpass in the background.


The same place as in the previous photo but taken from ground level.




Edit: photos are taken from here - http://www.mnt.ee/mm/

Last edited by Rebasepoiss; October 1st, 2010 at 08:00 PM.
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Old October 1st, 2010, 07:54 PM   #409
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Wow, great pics
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Old October 1st, 2010, 10:05 PM   #410
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rebasepoiss View Post
Interchange between T2/T5, looking towards Tallinn. (T2 is below)


Aerial of the T5 right next to the T2/T5 interchange. T2 is under the overpass in the background.

This road really looks like a real motorway.

So I can't understand why they don't have any motorway signs on it.
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Old October 1st, 2010, 10:06 PM   #411
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Look closely in the background of that last picture. A left-turn exit.
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Old October 4th, 2010, 10:27 PM   #412
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Great photos. Road looks really high standartd. Just I have few concerns:
1) Why is it not even an expressway status road?
2) What's the point is of building viaduct and leaving left turn allowed? (http://img826.imageshack.us/img826/7930/imgp8884.jpg visible in this photo)
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Old October 4th, 2010, 11:41 PM   #413
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1) The 6 km section on 2/E263/Tallinn-Tartu is an expressway, though the speed limit won't be raised to 110 km/h this autumn (it would have to be lowered to 90 km/h in this month anyway). The crossing road (5/Pärnu-Rakvere) has only 2 km of 2+2 and these infamous left turns, so it won't be an expressway.
2) The crossing road has lower traffic levels, building a more sophisticated junction would probably have been overkill. It must be admitted though, that the realized solution is somewhat of a blunder.
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Old October 4th, 2010, 11:50 PM   #414
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maanus_j View Post
1) The 6 km section on 2/E263/Tallinn-Tartu is an expressway, though the speed limit won't be raised to 110 km/h this autumn (it would have to be lowered to 90 km/h in this month anyway). The crossing road (5/Pärnu-Rakvere) has only 2 km of 2+2 and these infamous left turns, so it won't be an expressway.
2) The crossing road has lower traffic levels, building a more sophisticated junction would probably have been overkill. It must be admitted though, that the realized solution is somewhat of a blunder.
But there is no expressway sign at the road. I dont think Estonia have the expressway sign that look something like this.

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Old October 4th, 2010, 11:53 PM   #415
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Actually, in Estonian road legislation there is no such thing as an expressway(which in most countries is a road meant exclusively for motorised vehicles but is not quite up to motorway standards) We have requirements for motorways but we haven't built any. The next best thing is a I class road which is in fact allowed to have some at-grade junctions and U-turns. So practically all of the 2x2 highways in Estonia are I class highways and so is this one.

BTW, to make things clear, Tallinn-Tartu highway/T2/E263 has no level crossings or left turns at Mäo bypass. The left turns exist on Pärnu-Rakvere highway/T5 at the intersection with T2.
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Old October 11th, 2010, 07:10 PM   #416
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In the news last week - Google is rumored to expand Street View to Tallinn.

Google's image capturing vehicles, eight black Opel Astras with Hamburg licence plates have been spotted in a parking lot in Tallinn's outskirts.

Google has been previously collecting Street View data both in Riga and Helsinki and caused controversy in both cities. In Helsinki, a criminal lawsuit was filed; in Riga, Google's Street View operations were stopped by authorities.

Estonian data protection agency says they are taking a cautious stance, but they don't plan to step in unless they receive complaints from people.

No comments from Google, yet.



Image from Eesti Päevaleht.



Google Street View car in Berlin. Image from E24.ee
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Old October 12th, 2010, 08:29 PM   #417
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Well, it didn't take long - the first traffic accident on just-opened Mäo interchange was recorded yesterday evening. A car was making a left turn from T5 (onto T2 towards Tartu) and collided with an oncoming vehicle.

I am not really surprised

The article: http://www.jt.ee/?id=325283

In the picture below: drivers coming from top left need to use the median gap to turn onto T2 sliproad - that is where the accident took place.



As you see, 1) there is no separate turn lane and no indication for through-traffic that second lane may be obstructed by standing vehicles, waiting for a turn; 2) driver's view is nicely blocked by a curved median barrier and 3) the same gap is also used by vehicles coming up from the sliproad (on the left-hand side of the image) and wanting to turn left, too.
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Old October 12th, 2010, 09:09 PM   #418
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Every time I see a design that is obviusly flawed, I ask myself: "How come did someone get payed for doing this?"
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Old October 13th, 2010, 12:58 AM   #419
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Another "nice" feature of the new road is these slots in the central crash barrier (you can see one in this image: http://img444.imageshack.us/img444/3564/imgp8246.jpg).

I didn't understand their purpose until I drove past a week ago and saw that these are used by the law enforcement to catch speeders - a nice speed trap.
That's actually fcking disappointing that such features are planned in advance. The police should really think what are their priorities - sitting and waiting for speeders on a 2+2 expressway doesn't contribute much to road safety. Some guy driving at 120 kmh and continuously overtaking others on the curvy section between Ardu and Anna is a lot more dangerous. Sure, thanks to the speed cameras the situation there has improved, but we have still enough of reckless and stupid drivers, who need to be looked after - but in places where they pose the most danger. As for Mäo bypass, I wouldn't really care about someone driving there at 150 kmh.
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Old October 13th, 2010, 01:08 AM   #420
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
Look closely in the background of that last picture. A left-turn exit.
I don't think it is a left turn exit, as the arrows on the pavement indicate straight through only. I think the gap is a U-Turn place for service and emergency vehicles.
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