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The Induced Traffic Principle, aka Latent Demand


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#51 hannerhan

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Posted 25 August 2014 - 07:43 AM

If it's backed up, people can just do what they did for the past 50 years (Bryant Irvin, Vickery, Hulen, I-35, etc.). 

 

I totally get the induced traffic principle.  But the question I have is whether that's a bad thing. 



#52 mmmdan

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Posted 25 August 2014 - 10:28 AM

If the goal is to have more people living along the CTP and more automotive traffic in these areas, then building a highway is the perfect thing.

 

However, if what people want is a smooth quick ride into Fort Worth from the burbs, then building a highway will only work temporarily.  There is a certain amount of traffic that people will deal with.  Once an area hits that point, growth slows and things tend to hit an equilibrium.

 

As we can see by the already announced developments, the CTP is inducing more people to live along it.  For the people that were pushing for the CTP to reduce travel times, the effect of the CTP is only temporary.  At some point in the near future, there will be enough additional people living along the CTP that the travel times will be the same as they were before the CTP was built.

 

The answer to this increased congestion will be to create more travel lanes, which will ease the traffic, which will make the area more attractive to new people, and these new people will increase the congestion, and around and around we go.



#53 Fort Worthology

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Posted 25 August 2014 - 11:46 AM

It's a never-ending cycle of build more roads, get more traffic, build more roads, get more traffic, on and on, all tied into building areas totally designed around one single mode of transportation.  If you're a subdivision builder or a TxDOT highway engineer or NTTA, I'm sure it's a grand thing.  If you're looking for a city that's more economically and environmentally sustainable and which doesn't enforce mandatory car usage for everything and which offers a good mixture of various housing types and transportation methods, it's not so great.


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#54 Austin55

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Posted 25 August 2014 - 04:00 PM

Well I watched a short documentary on the subject last night so I'm a bit jaded, but it seems like self driving automobiles are going to be here very soon, and they promise to be able to relieve traffic. Could these smart and networked vehicles break the cycle? And how efficient could they be? Are we overbuilding our infrastructure? 

 

SDA's could also change parking. If your car can come pick you up rather than you walking to it, premium spaces in places like downtown could be a thing of the past. 

 

Perhaps a subject for a new topic?



#55 Fort Worthology

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Posted 26 August 2014 - 07:41 AM

One thing always missing from those shiny self-driving car documentaries seems to be "pedestrians."

 

Just making cars self-driving doesn't solve nearly all of their problems - whether I'm driving it or the computer's driving it, it's still eating up real estate to be stored when not moving.


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#56 PeopleAreStrange

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Posted 26 August 2014 - 07:31 PM

(Tried to find appropriate place to put this. Feel free to move it if there's a better thread).

 

My neighborhood (Oakhurst) is directly to the east of the massive I-35W project that is about to get underway. Last week we had a neighborhood meeting where we received a briefing from NTTA and the City on the project as it gets underway.

 

As I'm sure everyone who travels I-35W knows, there is currently a bottleneck that occurs northbound at 28th Street where the highway goes from 3 lanes to 2. This same bottleneck occurs again north of 820 where it again goes from 3 lanes to 2 just north of Western Center. Not surprisingly, these bottlenecks are a major contributor to the gridlock that we see on I-35W on a daily basis.

 

I was interested to learn at this meeting that the bottleneck at 28th Street is going to be reconstructed just as it is now! There will be two tolled lanes added in each direction, but this bottleneck design of 3 to 2 lanes northbound is going to be replicated when the entire highway is rebuilt. I'm sure this will recreate the gridlock effect quite well, and drive additional revenue onto the tolled lanes. Unbelievable.

 

Last time I checked the preliminary 35W renderings on YouTube, there were supposed to be four free lanes in each direction. That's disappointing to hear freeway lanes with 35W and Loop 820 have been reduced.

 

The design flaw with the North Tarrant Express that I'm most concerned about is how three or four free lanes *and* two or three free lanes (up to seven lanes) will merge into three lanes heading east on 183 into Dallas county. It is a traffic nightmare waiting to happen.

 

These freeways needed to be widened, but as time goes on, I'm less and less happy with this terrible split freeway/tollway design.


- Dylan


#57 Volare

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Posted 26 August 2014 - 09:20 PM

 

Last time I checked the preliminary 35W renderings on YouTube, there were supposed to be four free lanes in each direction. That's disappointing to hear freeway lanes with 35W and Loop 820 have been reduced.

 

That is apparently the "ultimate plan" which is not what they are building now. They don't have money for that. So they are merely rebuilding the exact number of free lanes that we already have, aka not fixing anything.

 

There were some pretty incredulous people when we heard this bit of news.



#58 renamerusk

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Posted 26 August 2014 - 09:24 PM

 

 

The design flaw with the North Tarrant Express that I'm most concerned about is how three or four free lanes *and* two or three free lanes (up to seven lanes) will merge into three lanes heading east on 183 into Dallas county. It is a traffic nightmare waiting to happen.

 

 I think it has been reported that the 183 portion in Dallas County will be a combination of toll and free lanes and that it will align with the Tarrant County portion.



#59 hannerhan

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 07:51 AM

I don't mind the I-35 setup at all.  The people who are willing to pay the toll will reduce traffic on the main lanes for everyone else, and I (as a taxpayer) don't have to pay for it.  There isn't a silver bullet...either we raise the gas tax so public money can fix the freeways like I-35 or we allow private enterprise to come in and do their thing.  Since politicians don't want to raise the tax, this is what we get and I'm OK with it.  It's certainly going to be a lot better than it is now.



#60 PeopleAreStrange

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 09:05 PM

 

The design flaw with the North Tarrant Express that I'm most concerned about is how three or four free lanes *and* two or three free lanes (up to seven lanes) will merge into three lanes heading east on 183 into Dallas county. It is a traffic nightmare waiting to happen.

 

 I think it has been reported that the 183 portion in Dallas County will be a combination of toll and free lanes and that it will align with the Tarrant County portion.

 

The Tarrant County portion of 183 is nearing completion; the Dallas county portion was just announced.


- Dylan


#61 JBB

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Posted 29 August 2014 - 10:16 AM

I don't mind the I-35 setup at all.  The people who are willing to pay the toll will reduce traffic on the main lanes for everyone else, and I (as a taxpayer) don't have to pay for it.  There isn't a silver bullet...either we raise the gas tax so public money can fix the freeways like I-35 or we allow private enterprise to come in and do their thing.  Since politicians don't want to raise the tax, this is what we get and I'm OK with it.  It's certainly going to be a lot better than it is now.


I agree with this. And before we judge NTE's ability to handle traffic, I think we should wait until everything is fully operational, like all of the entrance and exit ramps and the toll lanes. Just my limited anecdotal evidence: I drive the 183 portion of the project at least 2 days a week going to work (I bypass it on days when I drop the kid off at school) and 5 days a week coming home. Since the main lane work has largely been completed, west bound morning traffic 183 still backs up from Pipeline/Glenview due to the criss-cross merging of traffic from 820/183. That was a problem before this construction and will be until the 820/121 interchange is rebuilt (not part of the NTE project and not on the books as far as I know). It's not stop and go, but it's not full speed. In the evenings, I come from downtown via 121 and there's some slowdown still at 820 and Pipeline/Glenview, but once I make it past the exit ramp for 26 and Bedford-Euless Rd., it is smooth sailing until I exit at Norwood.

Two factors that I think will make this project an improvement despite the lack of additional free traffic lanes: 1. Outdated designs have been addressed. Exit and entrance ramps have been lengthened significantly and there are more and longer acceleration and deceleration lanes. These longer lanes make the freeway 4 and 5 lanes wide for several miles in some spots. 2. If the DFW Connector toll prices ($1.00 during rush, $0.67 non-rush) are any indication, the toll lanes should pull off some traffic from the main lanes. I would have to go 5 miles out of my way coming and going to make use of the toll lanes and, even if the tolls were double what they are in Grapevine, it would completely make sense to do so on some of my days when I need to get to work early.

Many of the same factors are in play on the 820 portion of the project and will be on the 35 project. It may not be the perfect solution, but modernizing the design will go a long way to addressing some of the issues.

#62 David Love

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Posted 31 August 2014 - 09:56 AM

The implementation of two laws in Texas would increase the surface space of our highway system by 20-25%. OVER NIGHT

  •     Touching a cellphone, tablet or PC while driving holds the same penalties as a DUI, because it kills more people than.
  •     Traffic moving above 45 mph, slower traffic must move over. (Hurst PD should be in charge of this type of traffic violation for the entire Metroplex.)

You can build all the highways you want, but you'll never have enough when all it takes is ONE person driving ten mph slower than moving traffic, camped in the center lane, to create a 5 mile backup in less than 20 minutes.

 

Better management of the resources we have is a more prudent choice of action considering the time, costs and serious inconvenience highway construction is to everyone concerned. Yet, highway construction can never really stop, we're always going to need more and we're nearly ten years behind schedule as it is, which is "exactly" why better management is our best course of action, now.


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#63 RD Milhollin

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Posted 31 August 2014 - 11:41 AM

One thing I have noticed over time is that there are many roads, especially residential, that are much wider than needed to carry the traffic they are required to accommodate. There is pavement put down routinely that rarely supports a vehicle. More pavement laid means more pavement to maintain and eventually replace. More pavement also bleeds off into other problem areas such as storm drainage and floodwater production and induced speeding through areas with pedestrians and bikes, again often but not exclusively in residential areas. I agree that more stringent management of roadways is needed, and I would add that I believe that a thorough review and updating of roadway standards with an eye to reducing unnecessary pavement should be implemented as part of that effort.



#64 McHand

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Posted 31 August 2014 - 09:42 PM

The implementation of two laws in Texas would increase the surface space of our highway system by 20-25%. OVER NIGHT

  •     Touching a cellphone, tablet or PC while driving holds the same penalties as a DUI, because it kills more people than.
  •     Traffic moving above 45 mph, slower traffic must move over. (Hurst PD should be in charge of this type of traffic violation for the entire Metroplex.)

 

Is this because people tend to slow down significantly when they are driving distracted?


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#65 RD Milhollin

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Posted 01 September 2014 - 08:13 AM

If you really want to reduce driver distraction on busy highways then consider banning billboards, especially the electronic animated ones. The ones at the SH-183/121 westbound approach to the complex I-820 Wright Freeway intersection come to mind as a serious driver distraction; drivers are always swerving across lane lines within view of the signs and changing lanes at the last minute just past them.



#66 Volare

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Posted 02 September 2014 - 02:31 PM

A link to the powerpoint presentation given to the Oakhurst NA a few weeks ago. There are a few historic aerial photos of I-35W that may be of interest.



#67 PeopleAreStrange

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Posted 07 October 2014 - 10:16 PM

I was watching the local news this morning, and there were NO red traffic sensors on 820 and 183 this morning! :blink: I can't recall the last time that I have seen 820 / 183 without any red on the morning traffic map.

 

Looks like the newly-opened but confusing toll lanes are working for now. Hopefully this holds up for many decades.


- Dylan


#68 RD Milhollin

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Posted 07 October 2014 - 11:49 PM

A link to the powerpoint presentation given to the Oakhurst NA a few weeks ago. There are a few historic aerial photos of I-35W that may be of interest.

 

The frontage roads are a waste and will negate the effectiveness of traffic flow at entry and exit points if they are allowed to be built up with restaurants and big box stores. The cost of those roads adds significantly to the cost of the project, and dramatically increases an already massive concrete footprint. At some point the planners are going to need to decide if they are working on a transportation project or an economic development scheme. A better use of that land would be tree-filled buffers to mitigate the noise and pollution coming off the highway and separate it from urban dwelling and business areas.



#69 JBB

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Posted 08 October 2014 - 12:12 PM

The merge from

I was watching the local news this morning, and there were NO red traffic sensors on 820 and 183 this morning! :blink: I can't recall the last time that I have seen 820 / 183 without any red on the morning traffic map.
 
Looks like the newly-opened but confusing toll lanes are working for now. Hopefully this holds up for many decades.


The merge from 183 westbound/820 eastbound onto 820 southbound is still a mess. I actually came to a stop at one point around Glenview.

#70 PeopleAreStrange

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Posted 08 October 2014 - 07:23 PM

That doesn't sound good. What time of day?


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#71 JBB

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Posted 08 October 2014 - 08:21 PM

Between 7:45 and 8:00 the last 2 days. It was like that before and there's a lot of crisscrossing traffic.

#72 RD Milhollin

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Posted 17 February 2016 - 08:27 AM

New Houston mayor references Induced Traffic Principle, need for a new paradigm in urban transportation infrastructure:

 

http://www.dallasobs...n-texas-7988611

 

“The Katy Freeway, or Interstate 10 west of Houston,” Turner said, “is the widest freeway in the world, with up to 26 lanes including frontage road lanes. The 2008 widening had a significant impact on the adjacent businesses and communities.

 

“Yet, despite all these lanes, in 2015 the section of this freeway near Beltway 8 was identified as the eighth most congested roadway in the state. This was only seven years after being reconstructed.”



#73 Volare

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Posted 17 February 2016 - 08:55 AM

Same thing is going to happen with the new I-35W, but it won't take 7 years. The free lanes are being reconstructed with the same 3-2-3-2 lane constrictions that exist now, so absolutely nothing will be improved, other than the pocketbooks of the NTTA.



#74 Mr_Brightside526

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Posted 19 February 2016 - 12:43 PM

Same thing is going to happen with the new I-35W, but it won't take 7 years. The free lanes are being reconstructed with the same 3-2-3-2 lane constrictions that exist now, so absolutely nothing will be improved, other than the pocketbooks of the NTTA.

 

Grrr... this is absolutely correct. Let's not forget I-35/820 to the 121/183 merger. That is poor, poor planning at its finest!



#75 PeopleAreStrange

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Posted 22 February 2016 - 02:08 PM

The original plans included an additional free lane in each direction (in addition to toll lanes), but those plans were scrapped at some point. $ $ $


- Dylan


#76 Volare

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Posted 23 February 2016 - 09:30 AM

The original plans included an additional free lane in each direction (in addition to toll lanes), but those plans were scrapped at some point. $ $ $

 

Yeah, the ultimate plans still have additional free lanes planned, including full length access roads, but like you said, no $$ due to gas tax remaining the same for 30+ years while inflation and MPG goes up up up.

 

Just adding a free lane isn't what is needed, it's getting rid of the places where it goes from 3 to 2 to 3 to 2 lanes. It does this twice going northbound (at 28th St and at Basswood) and it does it twice going Southbound (Belknap and one other...) these permanent bottlenecks are being RECREATED on the entirely new road that is being built. This is unconscionable and frankly negligent on the part of the State who is allowing this design.



#77 hannerhan

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Posted 24 February 2016 - 08:42 AM

 

The original plans included an additional free lane in each direction (in addition to toll lanes), but those plans were scrapped at some point. $ $ $

 

Yeah, the ultimate plans still have additional free lanes planned, including full length access roads, but like you said, no $$ due to gas tax remaining the same for 30+ years while inflation and MPG goes up up up.

 

Just adding a free lane isn't what is needed, it's getting rid of the places where it goes from 3 to 2 to 3 to 2 lanes. It does this twice going northbound (at 28th St and at Basswood) and it does it twice going Southbound (Belknap and one other...) these permanent bottlenecks are being RECREATED on the entirely new road that is being built. This is unconscionable and frankly negligent on the part of the State who is allowing this design.

 

 

I don't deny this problem (3 lanes down to 2), but nobody can deny that North Loop 820 and 183 is now WAY, WAY better in terms of traffic, vs. the situation before the toll lanes were put in.  I-35W will be a similar improvement, regardless of the issues you correctly point out. 

 

The bottom line is this: either you raise the gas tax way higher so we can pay for new roads with public dollars, or you don't fix the roads at all, or you let private enterprise come in and do it.  Put me in the camp of thinking that the hybrid toll roads are great.  If I choose to pay to get on the toll lanes, I can go fast.  If not, I'm still happy that they exist because lots of other cars are no longer in my free lanes.  Traffic is way better as a result.


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#78 JBB

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Posted 24 February 2016 - 09:28 AM

Exactly. One of the best accomplishments of the NTE project was the improvement of outdated exit and entrance ramps. 183 eastbound was always terribly backed up during the evening rush hour because of the short exit ramps at Precinct Line, Bedford Rd. and Central and it is now possible to take the stretch from Bedford-Euless Rd. to 121 at 60 mph without slamming on the brakes at some point. I've lived in Bedford for most of the last 2 decades and that was never possible before.

The biggest problem with the whole project was not doing more to address the transitions at the 183/820 interchange. There is still a lot 4 lanes merging to less and criss-crossing of traffic that has everything bogged down just as bad as before the rebuild. Some of that should improve when 820/121 is reworked between Randol Mill and Pipeline in the coming years.

#79 renamerusk

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Posted 24 February 2016 - 11:20 PM

Speaking of a Cultural District Roundabout, such a roundabout would seem to be an excellent solution for the Six Point Intersection:

 

http://www.fwtx.com/...evival4_map.jpg



#80 JBB

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Posted 24 February 2016 - 11:56 PM

You're right, but I think you've got your threads mixed up.



#81 renamerusk

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Posted 25 February 2016 - 08:38 AM

 

I'm just rambling... In Texas we ask "How are we going to efficiently move all these cars?" A similar question, which is asked outside of the Sunbelt is "How are we going to efficiently move all these people?".......

We could also have a thread to discuss induced traffic and transportation theory (if we don't already have one).

 

You're right, but I think you've got your threads mixed up.

 

My small but significant effort at being a librarian... :swg:



#82 Electricron

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Posted 26 February 2016 - 02:10 AM

My dictionary on latent

Full Definition of latent:  present and capable of emerging or developing but not now visible, obvious, active, or symptomatic <a latent infection>

 

Latent demand is a confusing term, because many suggest vehicles will suddenly arise out of nowhere to fill freeway lanes. That suggestion isn't correct. Instead we see many new vehicles using the freeway because the demand was there  before the new freeway lanes were built - that's why those new freeway lanes were built.  As long as the number of registered vehicles keep doubling every 20 to 30 years, there will always be more vehicles to fill these new lanes. 

 

Number of registered vehicles in the US:

1960 =  74.4 million

1965 = 91.7 million

1970 = 111 million

1975 = 137.9 million

1980 = 161.5 million

1985 = 177.1 million

1990 = 193.0 million

1995 = 205.4 million

2000 = 225.8 million

2005 = 247.4 million

2010 = 250.0 million

2013 = 255.9 million

2015 = 257.9 million

Looks like the rate of growth has slowed somewhat since 2005. Between 1960 and 1980, a period of just 20 years, the number of vehicles doubled - an increase of 87.1 million. That averages to a 5% increase per year over 20 years. Between 1970 and 2000, a period of 30 years, the number of vehicles doubled. - an increase of 114.8 million. That averages to a 3.3% increase per year over 30 years. 

 

Some relative history:

In January 1969, the first section to open to motorists was a 10-mile (16 km) section from US 75 to Barnes Bridge in Mesquite. In February 1970, the highway from US 75 westward to I-35E northwest of Dallas opened to traffic.

 

​In 1970, there were 111 million vehicles in the US. Today there are almost 258 million vehicles, an increase of 232% Now you know why freeways require more lanes, there are twice as many vehicles now than when the freeways were built.   ;)

 

And I haven't even mentioned the data on highway miles driven every year. 

 

Latent doesn't mean non existing. It means present but hidden -

 

Latent demand means the demand is present but hidden, as more vehicles are built the demand presents itself.

 

No doubt a larger freeway capacity will attract more vehicles. Eventually the new larger freeway will become congested again, as more vehicles seek room to run.  We have a choice, expand freeways or expand city streets. Somehow I believe many would prefer expanding the freeways. ;)

 

There is hope, the number of vehicle registrations growth has slowed to about 4% over 10 years, or 0.4% per year. Just look at the data from the last 10 years.

Math = 257.9 / 247.4 = 1.04244139046079

At that pace, it take another 200 years for the number of vehicles to double again. ;)

 

But those are national numbers, the DFW metro area is still experencing high population growth, which also should mean high vehicle growth too. Sorry....:(



#83 RD Milhollin

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Posted 26 February 2016 - 09:43 AM

No doubt a larger freeway capacity will attract more vehicles. Eventually the new larger freeway will become congested again, as more vehicles seek room to run.  We have a choice, expand freeways or expand city streets. Somehow I believe many would prefer expanding the freeways. ;)

 

Expanding existing streets is one alternative as you mentioned, but expanding the number of connections between streets would result in an increased number of alternative routes from point A to point B, especially for trips less than 5 miles. There are plenty of instances where "tweaking" of road infrastructure would make it just as easy, and even easier during rush hour, to travel short distances without the need of getting on a freeway (or tollway/lane). Arterials often end in a "T" at major cross streets when a connector could be built to allow that traffic to move onto another street heading the same direction a few blocks away; bridges over creeks or rivers, viaducts over railroads or highways and even improved timing of traffic signals along major local streets would provide motorists with alternatives to going out of their way to get on a freeway for a relatively short hop. This isn't even touching on improved subdivision design standands that require more through streets, walkable layout for neighborhoods, mixed-use buildings (yeah, real mixed use with retail/office below and residential above) all of which would allow people to use means other than motor vehicle to access basic services and products (bread, milk, etc.) thus taking cars off the roads for unnecessary trips.

 

Instead of building frontage roads, which increase dramatically the footprint of freeways and attract sprawl retail development whose traffic in turn snarls entry/exit ramps and intersections with arterials, highway designers should concentrate those resources on improving connectivity along the highway route to allow local traffic to get to where it needs to be without the necessity of entering the freeway. Parallel business routes would be the best place to divert traffic during initial construction and subsequent maintenance of the freeway lanes as well as emergency shut-downs, and would be a better place for regional retail centers to locate where their traffic patterns would not so adversely affect highway traffic capacity.



#84 Volare

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Posted 25 April 2016 - 06:06 PM

Another data point:

 

http://www.wired.com.../?mbid=nl_42516

 

An interesting tidbit of that article is the piece about removing a bottleneck where a freeway went from 3 lanes to 2 and back to 3. This is exactly the problem that currently exists on I-35W, and it is a problem that is not being fixed by the new tollroad.






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