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  #7381  
Old Posted Today, 3:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Wizened Variations View Post
You, like many of us, have made too much money off the status quo and live too well to bite the hand the feeds you.
If only that were true, that I live well.
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  #7382  
Old Posted Today, 5:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Wizened Variations View Post
Agreed.

Perhaps at a minimum 2 reversible lanes with few exits. The bulk of the traffic is generated in Denver, IMO, that goes through Eisenhower tunnel. Perhaps 3 or 4 exit/entrances between the Tunnel and US 6, east of Georgetown.

Between US 6 and I-25 and I-70 and Georgetown, perhaps a more humble addition of one extra lane on the uphill side of hills in the direction traffic.

I also believe that more 3 lane passing sections should be built along US 6 between I-70 and Golden.

I also agree that the two lanes should not be tolled.
You know, some sort of reversible lane implementation on I-70 from Floyd Hill to Vail seems to make a heck of a lot of sense for the mountains because the one way traffic is so easy to predict, unlike say in Denver or on US 36 where there is no clear cut "bad" direction to travel at a certain time.

In the "off" direction, 2 lanes seems to cut it just fine, and probably will for quite some time to come. If they expanded one more lane on each side, but during peak hours were somehow able to convert one of the lanes from the "off" direction traffic to be used for the high flow direction I would think it could go a very long way to alleviating congestion.

This would still require expansion of the entire corridor to 6 lanes though, that's a given. We can't ask for one way to go to 1 lane, because trucks would muck everything up, but if we expanded the highway and allowed for reversible lanes, even if only for key sections, how could that not help tremendously? Basically you are getting an 4 lane expansion for the price of 2 maybe 3 max due to the special signage and crossovers that would be required.
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  #7383  
Old Posted Today, 6:01 AM
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Originally Posted by EngiNerd View Post
For those curious, here is a detailed explanation of what's going on for the new I-70 toll lane between US 40 and the Twin Tunnels.
Or you can read the short version of what's being done at DBJ.
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  #7384  
Old Posted Today, 6:56 AM
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Originally Posted by bunt_q View Post
Listening to planners and liberals talk about induced demand is like listening to conservatives talk about how there can't be global warming because it's winter. It must sound good coming out of their mouths, except that it makes no sense whatsoever.

Define a "ridiculously high economic cost." The highway alternatives were priced at roughly 1/3 of any transit alternatives.

Environmental costs aren't real, give me a break. The highway is there. The damage is already done. Unless the environmental cost you're referring to is "more people in the mountains" generally. In which case... too bad. That's why we live here. Ray-gun growth control doesn't work.
At least you got this part right.

Putting aside the ideological arguments for a moment who in your solution is gonna want to approve (vote for) and agree to pay for your improvements: the conservatives or the liberals?

Back to the ideological...
While I understand things were very different way back when I lived in Aspen or when I camped all over from north of Pagosa Springs to Rocky Mountain National Park whether with my daughter or with my "date du jour" but I have very mixed feelings.

There's something very special about our mountains and their pristine mountain streams The idea of being callous to protecting and preserving seems wrong.

That said I'm flexible about the Denver to Summit County corridor and I suppose by extension Vail. Whatever is done will have to be tolled to work. The next major project for CDOT will be the I-70 rebuild from Brighten Blvd to the east. That will take us to about 2020. Just sayin'.

P.S. I like the idea of a train; whether maglev could handle the grades I don't know. But for handling the winter ski crowds a train would be great.
In summer if you want to go to Aspen, take an extra day (or not) and drive via Highway 24/82 and Independence Pass at least in one direction. Awesome way to go.
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  #7385  
Old Posted Today, 1:55 PM
Stonemans_rowJ Stonemans_rowJ is online now
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Why not put a toll in at Westbound Georgetown for everyone, not just one lane? Similar to what we have all over the east coast. Do people not go to NYC from NJ because of the toll, or from the East Bay to SF? Hell, you even pay a toll driving across Oklahoma and Kansas.
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  #7386  
Old Posted Today, 2:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Stonemans_rowJ View Post
Hell, you even pay a toll driving across Oklahoma and Kansas.
Oy vey...... I couldn't see anyone wanting to pay this toll coming from or going to in any direction there.........

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  #7387  
Old Posted Today, 2:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stonemans_rowJ View Post
Why not put a toll in at Westbound Georgetown for everyone, not just one lane? Similar to what we have all over the east coast. Do people not go to NYC from NJ because of the toll, or from the East Bay to SF? Hell, you even pay a toll driving across Oklahoma and Kansas.
In general you are prohibited by the feds from tolling on existing lanes. Few exceptions 1) Already a tollway when the interstate system came into effect 2) New HOT lanes 3) Pilot programs that entail a lot of federal oversight.

I70 might be eligible for one of those pilot programs as it fits the general purpose of the two. However I believe all slots in the federal pilot programs are full.
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  #7388  
Old Posted Today, 2:14 PM
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Originally Posted by bobg View Post
In general you are prohibited by the feds from tolling on existing lanes. Few exceptions 1) Already a tollway when the interstate system came into effect 2) New HOT lanes 3) Pilot programs that entail a lot of federal oversight.

I70 might be eligible for one of those pilot programs as it fits the general purpose of the two. However I believe all slots in the federal pilot programs are full.
Right, that's the only reason that portion of I-70 is tolled from Topeka to KC, because it was a tolled turnpike before it became part of the interstate system.
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  #7389  
Old Posted Today, 2:32 PM
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Originally Posted by bunt_q View Post
Induced demand is a good thing.
Depends on your goal. If your goal is more throughput then yes. If your goal is reduced long term congestion then no. If you have mixed goals, maybe.

On I-70 we have mixed goals. We want to get more people to diffuse destinations in the mountains, affordably, through expensive terrain, without destroying the mountain towns. We can probably do that with HOT lanes better than with anything else available right now, so that's great. But we also know that HOT lanes are a temporary solution, and we can only practically widen I-70 so much before other options become more palatable.

So yeah, let's go ahead and do the HOT lanes, but let's not pretend it's anything other than a temporary bandaid. The next generation will have to figure something else out.
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  #7390  
Old Posted Today, 2:52 PM
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The majority of the Gold line will be double tracked, but will be single track through old town Arvada. Trains will be electric and the same that will be used on the line to the airport.
Looking at a single track through old town Arvada, purely from a design standpoint and the affect that single track will have on line efficiency, the decision stinks.

This likely involves at least some really stupid short term thought on the part of old town Arvada property owners. What few realized, is that each would have made far more money (less those whose property would have had to be purchased for the second track...) if the line has a shorter commute time to Lodo.

This is a huge setback for net speeds on the line. Combine that with no 3 or 4 track stations (at least one) for same direction passing, and, the time to travel the line will discourage those users who are 15 minutes or more from a station.

Oh well...
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  #7391  
Old Posted Today, 3:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Cirrus View Post
without destroying the mountain towns.
Without destroying the mountains. I think only the mountain towns care about the mountain towns.

I also take everything Clear Creek County says with a grain of salt, since tourists (delayed Denverites, really) outnumber residents in those towns 2-to-1 on a typical Sunday. What I hear from them is a combination of routine whining and some perverse incentives that lead them to wanting to keep the highway just bad enough that Beau Jos sounds like a better idea than going home for dinner.
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  #7392  
Old Posted Today, 3:10 PM
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The Key is the Tunnel

If the west I-70 problem were approached on the basis of increased efficiencies alone rather than cost, a 3rd Eisenhower tube would be built.

Combine that with 2 additional lanes that can have reversible direction and have these lanes have less exits than do the rest of the lanes, and, the I-70 situation would remain tolerable for a couple of decades, even at today's rate of use growth rate.

Of course, the tighter the budget, the more site specific improvements must be. At the very least, in those sections where adding a lane or two would be relatively easy, lanes should be added.

In any transportation system the first way to improve average speed at high traffic loads is to remove choke points. If that is politically unfeasible, then changes should be made where traffic that has passed through the choke point moves at a higher average speed at full traffic load. The hardest variable to deal with, if a choke point is left as is, is handling traffic that is approaching the choke point, as the vehicles per hour (whether steel or rubber wheeled) will not exceed a maximum and this maximum ripples up the incoming traffic direction.

Basically, traffic through the Eisenhower Tunnels is maxed out at peak traffic loads, and, other than adding capacity to the tunnel, the best that can be done is increase the average speed of traffic once the traffic has passed through the tunnel.
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  #7393  
Old Posted Today, 3:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Cirrus View Post
Depends on your goal. If your goal is more throughput then yes. If your goal is reduced long term congestion then no. If you have mixed goals, maybe.

On I-70 we have mixed goals. We want to get more people to diffuse destinations in the mountains, affordably, through expensive terrain, without destroying the mountain towns. We can probably do that with HOT lanes better than with anything else available right now, so that's great. But we also know that HOT lanes are a temporary solution, and we can only practically widen I-70 so much before other options become more palatable.

So yeah, let's go ahead and do the HOT lanes, but let's not pretend it's anything other than a temporary bandaid. The next generation will have to figure something else out.
It's only a temporary solution, in that it would only delay the advent of the magic choo-choo by 20 years, if it isn't done correctly to begin with. Any expansion of I-70 should be a 40-50 year solution because it's going to be damn expensive and disruptive. That's why we need to ensure that enough capacity is added for both additional car traffic and to implement high-frequency bus trips to the mountain towns. CDOT's interregional bus service is a good start and something that should be integrated with any kind of highway expansion.
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  #7394  
Old Posted Today, 4:17 PM
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Originally Posted by wong21fr View Post
It's only a temporary solution, in that it would only delay the advent of the magic choo-choo by 20 years, if it isn't done correctly to begin with. Any expansion of I-70 should be a 40-50 year solution because it's going to be damn expensive and disruptive. That's why we need to ensure that enough capacity is added for both additional car traffic and to implement high-frequency bus trips to the mountain towns. CDOT's interregional bus service is a good start and something that should be integrated with any kind of highway expansion.
We only need it last long enough until we can implement something that increases the capacity of existing highways. 20-40 years is fine. I'll be sorely disappointed if I still have to drive my own vehicle in 40 years.

Also, a train in 40 years still won't start at my house. And still won't get me to a trailhead. So it'll still be a park-n-ride-on-both-ends system. Which inherently does not work.

Wizened - the tunnel isn't the problem. The only time it ever backs up there is in the winter, and then the tunnel is the fast part. It's the steep approach from Dillon that sucks.
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  #7395  
Old Posted Today, 5:07 PM
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Other than for short-term band aids, increased tunnel capacity wiil be needed.
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  #7396  
Old Posted Today, 5:20 PM
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Limiting freight during peak hours has also been floated around.

I'm good with Managed Lane expansion and BRT/EB inclusion. I think it can give you necessary immediate relief with long-term momentum for some multi-modal usage. Like others have mentioned, the share of potential trips being served by transit is somewhat limited, but it's still an opportunity we should foster. And we can afford to do that through BRT/EB. A train at this point doesn't make a lot of sense.
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