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Old 12-16-2014, 08:30 AM
 
28,109 posts, read 24,639,595 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gnutella View Post
I thought about this when I was sitting in traffic on the Downtown Connector yesterday: What they need to do is have separate "local" and "express" lanes on that segment of the highway. There'd be four express lanes in each direction (including the HOV lanes), and three local lanes to handle traffic that's entering and exiting the highway. There would be multiple access points from the local lanes onto the express lanes, but only one access point to the express lanes themselves, which would be at the very beginning. That way there'd be minimal traffic disruption for people passing through downtown, and all traffic that's exiting downtown would be kept separate.
I agree.

Most of the traffic on the Connector is passing through downtown Atlanta en route to destinations elsewhere. Three local lanes ought to be aplenty.
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Old 12-16-2014, 08:30 AM
 
9,907 posts, read 6,894,976 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bu2 View Post
We've got nearly twice as many people as we did last time Atlanta added freeway lanes.
And even larger cities than Atlanta have less freeway lanes or even none at all in the core. What is your point?
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Old 12-16-2014, 12:05 PM
 
5,359 posts, read 4,886,734 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bu2 View Post
We've got nearly twice as many people as we did last time Atlanta added freeway lanes.
This is an excellent point. Though with the freeway system effectively being built-out both physically and politically, one of the few options that a major metro area like Atlanta has to help traffic flow on major roads like the Downtown Connector is for more money to be invested in improving, upgrading and expanding transit....That's because a high-quality transit network is an absolute necessity in a very large major metro area of 6 million people with an extremely limited road network.

Quote:
Originally Posted by afdinatl View Post
I wonder how traffic would be if 75 and 85 didn't combine? They would have been separate but close to each other with 12 lanes for 75 and 12 lanes for 85
They did enough damage to the city with the construction of the one single 14-16 lane Downtown Connector roadway through densely developed urban neighborhoods. We don't need two 12-lane freeways running through the city side by side. We can't widen freeways forever, particularly through densely developed and densely populated urban neighborhoods. At some point, a very large major metro area/region of 6 million people with extremely limited space for roadways does absolutely critically need to invest in and utilize transit at a high level, particularly after the road network has reached build-out.

Instead of foolishly and futilely attempting to knockdown and destroy more densely developed and populated urban neighborhoods to build more multi-lane freeways, what we need is a better and larger transit system with more train and bus service for the most heavily populated parts of the region. We particularly need much more transit service through the center of the Atlanta metro region (inside of the I-285 Perimeter and parallel to major Interstate and surface routes).

Quote:
Originally Posted by bu2 View Post
I think that was the biggest mistake Atlanta ever made on transportation. They went cheap and funneled too much traffic into one space.
Like some other posters pointed out, it was not Atlanta that routed a multiplexed Downtown Connector through the city. It was the federal and state governments that made the decision to route the road through the city because of a limited amount of funding with which to build the road with and a limited amount of land on which to build the road through the densely developed core of a major urban area.

The same decision to funnel expressway traffic from two interstates onto one roadway through the densely developed core of a major urban area was done in many major cities including:

> Minneapolis (Interstates 35W and 94)...

> St. Paul (Interstates 35E and 94)...

> Dallas (Interstates 30 and 35E)...

> Birmingham (Interstates 20 and 59)...

> Nashville (Interstates 24 and 40; Interstates 24 and 65)...

> Indianapolis (Interstates 65 and 70)...

> Kansas City (Interstates 35 and 70)...

> Los Angeles (Interstates 5 and 10)...

> Cincinnati (Interstates 71 and 75)...

> Chicago where Interstates 90 and 94 (famously or infamously, depending on one's viewpoint) merge and multiplex through the center of Chicago for about 16 miles).

Chicago is the most notable example of two major mainline transcontinental interstates being merged and multiplexed onto a single roadway for several miles through the heart of very large major metro area.

Chicago is such a notable example because the metro region (with the help of at least two state governments in Illinois and Indiana) has had no choice but to lean heavily on mass transit as an option to driving on its main central arterial expressway road, the I-90/I-94 Dan Ryan/Kennedy Expressway.

If anything, Atlanta's biggest mistake was not knocking down more homes, schools, parks and businesses to build more freeways through densely developed Intown neighborhoods.

Atlanta's biggest mistake was that the State of Georgia did not invest much more in a viable high-capacity transit alternative at the time that the state was building out the then-massive "Freeing-the-Freeways" widening project of the 1980's.

Quote:
Originally Posted by atl1221 View Post
The I-20 interchange needs to be fixed first. In fact, that interchange is a huge part of why that road backs up in the first place.
The I-20 interchange was fixed in a major way during the "Freeing-the-Freeways" project of the 1980's when the I-20 interchange was completely rebuilt to eliminate the left-hand exits and merges and the exit and merge ramps were lengthened along with the mainline interstate roadways being widened through the interchange.

At this point, the reality likely is that nothing more can be done to improve traffic flow on the Downtown Connector.

I-20, the I-75/I-85 Downtown Connector and all of the interchanges along the Downtown Connector are effectively built-out, both physically (in terms of a total lack of available land to further expand the road) and politically (all hell would break loose politically if the state even dared to suggest spending what at this point would probably be billions of dollars to knockdown more dense urban development to further expand a roadway that already features as many as 16 lanes in many spots).
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Old 12-16-2014, 12:22 PM
 
5,359 posts, read 4,886,734 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by atler8 View Post
No. Absolutely not!
I ride on the connector every day via a commuter bus which also takes me onto various city streets that often overlook or run parallel to the connector. I get a really good look at the space already used for the roadway as well as the adjacent spaces by virtue of my method of transport.
In downtown & in midtown it is not just near the capitol building that it would be virtually impossible to widen the connector but also through multiple other single tight squeeze points & general areas as well.
The stacking of the connector as a relief option should have been seriously investigated by the GDOT decades ago.
FYI: Atlanta did not make the choice in the 1950's as to where the interstate routes would go, by the way. The system was outlined & developed by the federal government & was named The Dwight Eisenhower System for a very good reason.
And what we have today in the form of a combined 85/75 in the city was not done as a means of being "cheap" & to save money. The general lay of the national routes was laid out with what was the best available means of traffic planning that were available then combined w/ state dot input.
I've seen vintage photos & video of the connector showing the old rush hour traffic. The volume was very light then as compared to that of today. So, it effectively served it's original purpose rather well early on.
No one could have ever foreseen the multitude of traffic volume that we know of here today.
These are some excellent points.

Though, if the Connector was to have been stacked, it likely would have had to have been stacked back about 30 years ago during the "Freeing-the-Freeways" widening project of the 1980's when the political will to massively expand the freeway system might have still existed and the costs of doing such a project were likely only a fraction of what such a massive freeway expansion project would cost today.

Today, the political will to further expand the Downtown Connector or any major roadway inside of the I-285 Perimeter (and even many roadways outside of the I-285 Perimeter) has basically completely dried up and no longer exists....A political will for freeway expansion that began to dry up in earnest after the successful freeway revolts of the 1960's and '70's against planned freeway construction through Intown neighborhoods in East Atlanta....And a political will for freeway expansion that effectively completely dried up after the controversial expansion of Georgia 400 through Buckhead and the successful pushback against the proposed Outer Perimeter and Northern Arc highways of the late 1990's and early 2000's.

At this point and moving forward, the only expansion of the Downtown Connector or any other roadway that is likely to take place inside of the I-285 Perimeter is the expansion of rail transit service along new and existing rail lines and the expansion of bus service along existing roadways. Any substantial roadway expansions is most likely effectively completely out of the question at this point.
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Old 12-16-2014, 12:30 PM
 
Location: Vinings/Cumberland in the evil county of Cobb
1,255 posts, read 1,106,414 times
Reputation: 1375
more lanes = NO
more options = YES
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Old 12-16-2014, 12:37 PM
 
Location: NW Atlanta
4,995 posts, read 3,475,762 times
Reputation: 2647
Absolutely not.
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Old 12-16-2014, 02:48 PM
 
Location: Atlanta, Birmingham, Charlotte, and Raleigh
2,300 posts, read 1,419,946 times
Reputation: 1378
Why? The solution is more alternative modes of travel aside from private automobile like mass transit.
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Old 12-16-2014, 02:51 PM
 
Location: Kirkwood
22,147 posts, read 16,147,338 times
Reputation: 4894
No way, there is no more ROW.
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Old 12-16-2014, 03:01 PM
 
Location: Valdosta (Atlanta Native)
3,442 posts, read 2,817,865 times
Reputation: 2148
Or we could just build more arterial roads that cost less, takes up less land, and won't be used by thru traffic.
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Old 12-16-2014, 03:03 PM
 
Location: Kirkwood
22,147 posts, read 16,147,338 times
Reputation: 4894
Quote:
Originally Posted by demonta4 View Post
Or we could just build more arterial roads that cost less, takes up less land, and won't be used by thru traffic.
Those roads don't have any more ROW.
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