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Old 01-16-2013, 10:37 AM
 
800 posts, read 696,704 times
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Let's back up for a second -- the states started constructing turpikes in the 1930s. The turnpikes absolutely were built for the purpose of intercity transportation. The Chicago Skyway, Indiana Turnpike, Ohio Turnpike, and Pennsylvania Turnpike formed a continuous route that remains independent of the Interstate Highway System despite being numbered variously as I-80/90/76. None of the turnpikes came into the city centers and they were all paid for with tolls. These highways remain state property independent of the Interstate Highway System and drivers still pay tolls to maintain them as the state DOT's are typically not permitted to use federal gasoline tax dispersements to fund their maintenance. So when you drive on the Ohio Turnpike, for example, you are paying federal gasoline tax but that tax must be spent on non-turnpike interstates.


The Interstate Highway System is completely different in strategy and funding than the turnpikes. It was of course originally supposed to be only a system of free roads like the turnpikes for areas where toll revenue could not support construction of such roads but the roads were in the national interest.

Fine. I think everyone can agree that there is a need for specific highways that cannot support themselves with toll revenue.

But planning for the system got out of control in the mid-1950s. Suddenly the program expanded to include ring roads around major cities AND highways directly through them.

This changed everything. No other country has done this. It shaped everything that has happened here since.

What it meant was the Federal Government paid for Local Transportation in every city in the United States. And that local transportation inevitably came in the form of limited access highways. There was zero federal money for public transportation until 1969, 10 years after the interstates had ripped through the cities and sent neighborhoods into a tailspin. The two cities that successfully fought the interstate highway system were New York City and San Francisco. It's no coincidence that they are the two most admired cities in the country today.

So we tore through the cities themselves, then built ring roads around them that opened up tens of thousands of acres of cheap farmland to auto-oriented development. So suddenly downtowns and old city neighborhoods were in competition with an endless number of competing development sites. Established ways of doing business collapsed in favor of auto-oriented gluttony. People stopped walking and started getting fat. The two cities where people kept walking and didn't get fat are New York and San Francisco.

Cincinnati was absolutely ravaged by the interstate system. It was a total, unmitigated disaster, especially when coupled with the scrapping of the streetcar system and the bulldozing of the unfinished surface sections of the subway line.

We had a handsome, energetic city with nice neighborhoods and a great downtown. You could walk to great parks, dozens of lively neighborhood business districts, or ride the streetcar downtown. And the WWII generation threw it away for crap like Tri-County and Mason. Somehow getting fat watching TV in a cheaply built air conditioned home became "American" and living in an old rowhouse and walking to the store became "Communist".
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:38 AM
 
Location: Philaburbia
31,165 posts, read 57,302,589 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ram2 View Post
When is Ohio going to build an Interstate connecting Toledo directly with Columbus?
That was part of the I-73 plan to replace or run parallel to U.S. 23, I think. There has been planning for it, but for the usual reasons is stalled.
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:44 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Ohiogirl81 View Post
That was part of the I-73 plan to replace or run parallel to U.S. 23, I think. There has been planning for it, but for the usual reasons is stalled.

Why wasn't an Interstate built there at the same time I-75/I-71 were being built?
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:55 AM
 
Location: Chicago, IL
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AND highways directly through them.
There is nothing wrong with having routes to connect places, but this is exactly the problem with our interstate system. It destroyed city life. Ring roads would have been fine. But not smashing through city neighborhoods. This coupled with Urban Renewal really destroyed most American cities. KJBRILL got to see places before this happened, but given the tone of his commentary, we can see why this happened in the first place.

Though I'll note that a few other cities did survive (not as well as San Fran and NYC), Chicago and Boston for instance are quite vibrant though in both cities there were strong freeway revolts - there would have been a lot more damage had those expressways been built. The areas of Chicago that were the least effected had the least amount of expressways (north side lakefront neighborhoods). Lakeshore drive did less damage because it was buffered by parks most of it's distance.

Also, Chicagoans are still fat (one of the highest in the country despite having a good mass transit system and a mostly walkable city) even though we walk more, though that's much more a problem of diet than being sedentary.

In Cincinnati I would have been happy with I-75 ending at Central Parkway, and running 275 through cleves so it would have been a better bypass. There would also have been a subway (and look at old pictures the density was there to support a train!) see - http://www.flickr.com/photos/michael...57603167344083

Last edited by neilworms2; 01-16-2013 at 11:03 AM..
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:57 AM
 
Location: Cincinnati
3,335 posts, read 5,727,944 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ram2 View Post
Why wasn't an Interstate built there at the same time I-75/I-71 were being built?
the main reason i-71 exists was to connect Cincinnati and Cleveland. Columbus historically wasn't much of a city. That has changed dramatically in the past twenty/thirty years, though.
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Old 01-16-2013, 11:42 AM
 
Location: Mason, OH
9,259 posts, read 13,363,536 times
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Originally Posted by rrtechno View Post
OK, so which interchanges on I-71 between Columbus and Cincinnati should be eliminated. And if we have too many, there should be no more than 1 in the Mason area.
And basically there is only one interchange in the Mason area. The southern interchange for Kings Island is just that, built for Kings Island, and it is just a half interchange. The exit to the south of that is for Deerfield Township, not Mason.
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Old 01-16-2013, 11:54 AM
 
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>Ring roads would have been fine

A ring freeway with very few interchanges would have kept the sprawl from happening on the same scale.

The whole problem with killing off the cities in favor of the sprawl was that the economic growth that came from this grand project was a broken window fallacy. Aside from the loss of the value of the actual homes and apartments either bulldozed or left to rot, which we have to pause for a moment to remember is often family wealth that was lost and not passed onto the next generation, the public infrastructure is often very overbuilt in the cities themselves for their current population. So there are huge water, sewer, electrical networks in most American cities that are being underused but must be maintained. Meanwhile all rate payers are stuck paying for expansion into cornfields.
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Old 01-16-2013, 11:58 AM
 
Location: Beavercreek, OH
2,194 posts, read 3,013,183 times
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Originally Posted by kjbrill View Post
I certainly agree with this. Every little burb along the way feels they are entitled to an interchange.
Hi kjbrill--

Disagree. So long as the highway maintains a sufficient number of thru lanes, there shouldn't be any problem with more exits and interchanges. It's proven that development - at the very least a couple gas stations or chain restaurants - will spring up near highway exits, providing much needed tax dollars and progress and money not only to the local burbs, but also the workers who end up there.

Of course, urban boosters hate development and progress and making money, if it's outside the core city.

If it were up to me, I-71 would be upgraded to three lanes in each direction clear up to Columbus, I-70 west of Springfield would be fast-tracked to be upgraded to three lanes in each direction (currently slated to be done in the late 2030's), and a minimum of four thru lanes inside of I-275 on both 71 and 75 in Cincinnati.

This would do wonders to alleviate traffic congestion, but the urban boosters here might have a coronary at the thought of free and uncongested movement between the city and the suburbs.
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Old 01-16-2013, 12:01 PM
 
Location: In a happy place
3,707 posts, read 6,566,581 times
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You have 3.5 interchanges on 71 within 6 miles driving of the center of Mason according to Google Maps. If that isn't in the Mason area, I don't know what is. Now which small towns between Columbus and Cincinnati should not have gotten an interchange near them.
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Old 01-16-2013, 12:12 PM
 
Location: Philaburbia
31,165 posts, read 57,302,589 times
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Originally Posted by hensleya1 View Post
If it were up to me, I-71 would be upgraded to three lanes in each direction clear up to Columbus
There really aren't a lot of backups on I-71 between south of Columbus and Kings Island . The annoying backups were on I-71 between Columbus and Cleveland, but that stretch became three lanes a few years ago.
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