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Thread: Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!

  1. #1
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
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    Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!

    Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!
    (If I ever get out of this traffic jam)
    By Eric Peters


    Did we really need a study to tell us that grinding our lives away in traffic jams leads to increase stress and thus the chances of ending up in the cardiac care ICU? Who among us thought it might be soothing to be bolixed in by forces beyond our control -- our range of action as limited as a broiler chicken in a factory farm wire mesh cage? To stare at an endless succession of "My child is an honor student at Pretentious Tot Academy"? To spend an hour covering a distance of 15 miles?

    Kidding aside, the recent study documenting the correlation between the amount of time a person spends mired in traffic and his or her chances of flatlining by the side of the road, spittle trickling out of the corner of their mouths, simply confirms what our overstressed bodies have been trying to tell us for years. Who among us has not felt the boil over? The uptick in heart rate -- the sweaty but futile rage that accompanies yet another bottleneck?

    But despite the alarm bells -- physiological and otherwise -- warning us of the ugly end this business will lead to -- we stay the course, grumbling and miserable but putting up with it nonetheless.

    It's a crazy way to live - spending as much as 10 hours per week stuck in a car -- which is merely average for a commuter living in a major urban/suburban area such as Washington, D.C. or Los Angeles. Many spend a lot more time than that. How is it that we voluntarily submit? If you think about it, spending a couple of hours per day in traffic is not qualititatively different from having been convicted of a minor crime and being sentenced to spend a day in the clink each week -- you know, like they do with DWI offenders and check kiters. Only there's no parole -- and the sentence is only going to increase over time.

    Alarming projections about the likely increase in the population around major urban areas -- and thus the likely uptick in cars on the road -- paint a Xanax-bleak picture of a future in which untold millions of Americans will spend more time caged in their cars than with their families -- or doing something other than waiting for the car ahead to inch forward so they can make it home in time to grab a pot pie and crash for the night.

    Where I used to live -- just outside Washington, D.C. -- workers had to leave by 7:30 to make it to the office by 9. And I was about 15 miles out from downtown. Folks living farther out -- in the ever-expanding sprawl of suburban tract developments -- get up even earlier. Some at 5 a.m. On the flip-flop, most suburban commuters punching out at 5 don't make it back to the homestead until well past six -- usually closer to 7 -- by which time they are understandably exhausted and looking to satisfy the most basic animal wants -- some food gulped down and a quick fade-out into eight hours of oblivion on the Serta Ultra Support. The microwave and Col. Sanders have supplanted the home cooked meal (who has time?) while only the strongest will supplemented by lots of coffee can rise to the occasion of helping with the homework or taking care of that thing that needs fixing.

    Meanwhile, the body cries in protest; it can only take this sort of abuse for so long without repercussions. Obesity, high bllod pressure; diabetes -- all on the rise. Is it a coincidence?

    Note also that those silly faux Graceland 5,000 square foot McMansions that keep popping up sit on ever-smaller lots -- typically 1/3 acre. (Two acres is considered an "estate.") Who cares if your neighbor's window is ten feet away -- so long as there's less grass to mow, less "upkeep" to have to deal with in the ever-diminsihing amount of spare time left to harried worker drones. It never occurs to these benighted souls that if they didn't have to spend so much time in their cars, they'd have time to care for -- and enjoy -- a decent-sized lawn, maybe a bit of elbow room between them and their neighbors. But instead, they'd rather be right on top of them -- just like they are when they're stuck in traffic.

    Luckily, the relief of the grave draws ever nigher. It may be the only way out.

    END

  2. #2
    TC
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    Re: Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric
    Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!
    (If I ever get out of this traffic jam)
    By Eric Peters


    Did we really need a study to tell us that grinding our lives away in traffic jams leads to increase stress and thus the chances of ending up in the cardiac care ICU? Who among us thought it might be soothing to be bolixed in by forces beyond our control -- our range of action as limited as a broiler chicken in a factory farm wire mesh cage? To stare at an endless succession of "My child is an honor student at Pretentious Tot Academy"? To spend an hour covering a distance of 15 miles?

    Kidding aside, the recent study documenting the correlation between the amount of time a person spends mired in traffic and his or her chances of flatlining by the side of the road, spittle trickling out of the corner of their mouths, simply confirms what our overstressed bodies have been trying to tell us for years. Who among us has not felt the boil over? The uptick in heart rate -- the sweaty but futile rage that accompanies yet another bottleneck?

    But despite the alarm bells -- physiological and otherwise -- warning us of the ugly end this business will lead to -- we stay the course, grumbling and miserable but putting up with it nonetheless.

    It's a crazy way to live - spending as much as 10 hours per week stuck in a car -- which is merely average for a commuter living in a major urban/suburban area such as Washington, D.C. or Los Angeles. Many spend a lot more time than that. How is it that we voluntarily submit? If you think about it, spending a couple of hours per day in traffic is not qualititatively different from having been convicted of a minor crime and being sentenced to spend a day in the clink each week -- you know, like they do with DWI offenders and check kiters. Only there's no parole -- and the sentence is only going to increase over time.

    Alarming projections about the likely increase in the population around major urban areas -- and thus the likely uptick in cars on the road -- paint a Xanax-bleak picture of a future in which untold millions of Americans will spend more time caged in their cars than with their families -- or doing something other than waiting for the car ahead to inch forward so they can make it home in time to grab a pot pie and crash for the night.

    Where I used to live -- just outside Washington, D.C. -- workers had to leave by 7:30 to make it to the office by 9. And I was about 15 miles out from downtown. Folks living farther out -- in the ever-expanding sprawl of suburban tract developments -- get up even earlier. Some at 5 a.m. On the flip-flop, most suburban commuters punching out at 5 don't make it back to the homestead until well past six -- usually closer to 7 -- by which time they are understandably exhausted and looking to satisfy the most basic animal wants -- some food gulped down and a quick fade-out into eight hours of oblivion on the Serta Ultra Support. The microwave and Col. Sanders have supplanted the home cooked meal (who has time?) while only the strongest will supplemented by lots of coffee can rise to the occasion of helping with the homework or taking care of that thing that needs fixing.

    Meanwhile, the body cries in protest; it can only take this sort of abuse for so long without repercussions. Obesity, high bllod pressure; diabetes -- all on the rise. Is it a coincidence?

    Note also that those silly faux Graceland 5,000 square foot McMansions that keep popping up sit on ever-smaller lots -- typically 1/3 acre. (Two acres is considered an "estate.") Who cares if your neighbor's window is ten feet away -- so long as there's less grass to mow, less "upkeep" to have to deal with in the ever-diminsihing amount of spare time left to harried worker drones. It never occurs to these benighted souls that if they didn't have to spend so much time in their cars, they'd have time to care for -- and enjoy -- a decent-sized lawn, maybe a bit of elbow room between them and their neighbors. But instead, they'd rather be right on top of them -- just like they are when they're stuck in traffic.

    Luckily, the relief of the grave draws ever nigher. It may be the only way out.

    END
    Doesn't that all have something to do with being on the proverbial treadmill?

  3. #3
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    Re: Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!

    There are three reasons for thie insane commutes.

    1. Deindustrialization - Workers don't work in centralized factories anymore. it used to be that communities were built around the factories which employed large numbers of people. People used to be able to ride the train, carpool, or drive, to one centralized place. Its not exactly that simple, but deindustrilization has played a large role in our insane commute. With those employment centers gone, people are having to work and live in diverse places, causing the commutes to become longer and last longer (rush hour is more like 4 hours)

    2. Poor regioinal planning: Instead of having clusters of housing and then nice long areas of "green space", we have greenspace being torn up by low density retail development. The only roads being built and widened are along commercial routes with Target, Walmart, Staples, Rooms to Go, Applebees, Mc Donalds, and countless other big box establishments. Its a joke that we've let that take lace. But, we spend so much time in our cars that we're stuck in too much traffic to be able to fight this madness.

    3. Neglect of our highway system - We have like 3x as much car traffic as we had in 1973, but we have maybe 6 percent more highways at the most. We need to go on a crash program to double the size of the limited access highway system. We need more roads. To offset the costs, states need to put an immediate moratiorum on all state and U.S. highway system expansion and concentrate on building interstate type highways only.

    Will it happen? Probably not. Could it happen? As long as we have the trappings of a democracy, maybe. Its up to us, but we'll need some good luck.




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    Re: Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!

    Quote Originally Posted by swamprat
    The only roads being built and widened are along commercial routes with Target, Walmart, Staples, Rooms to Go, Applebees, Mc Donalds, and countless other big box establishments. Its a joke that we've let that take lace.
    I am a self employed computer science guy (program/consult). So I get to drive around the ever expanding burbs of Minneapolis, to visit clients.

    I find it very depressing to see big box store after big box store - there is no individuality - no uniqueness - just plain old consumption.

    As for grabbing a bite to eat, just about all one can find is franchised fast food - just plain crap.

    I can't believe the US has turned into such a abysmal, lock step, boring, place!

  5. #5
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
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    Re: Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!

    What we really need is fewer damn people!

    Crowds ruin everything....

  6. #6
    TC
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    Re: Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric
    What we really need is fewer damn people!

    Crowds ruin everything....
    We should be like China; put a limit on the size of families.
    I mean it.

  7. #7
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    Re: Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!

    Quote Originally Posted by TC
    Quote Originally Posted by Eric
    What we really need is fewer damn people!

    Crowds ruin everything....
    We should be like China; put a limit on the size of families.
    I mean it.
    I think that there is a better way than that. Because of China's culture, there are 133 men for every 100 women in the 20-30 age group. What does that mean? There is more than an ample number to send off in the military and ppotentially take over a country. What happens? People get killed, and women get raped and taken away. China is a fearsome place and is not exactly a model that we should follow. They are about the size of the US, but they have 1.2 billlion people. We have about 300 million. Big difference.

    I thiink what we need to do is get control of our borders. The largest poplulation growth in the last 40 years has been in immigrants, both illegal and legal. To handle the illegal problem, we need to slam employers who hire them... HARD.Once word gets around, and it travels fast iin Spanish, the border s will quiet down. Does the current congress have the guts to do it? Does the president care? I think that we know the answer to that question.

    To accommodate more people and traffic, we need to simply build more highways and have state limitiations on the types of growth that will happen. That hasd a better chance of success.


  8. #8
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
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    Re: Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!

    Quote Originally Posted by TC
    Quote Originally Posted by Eric
    What we really need is fewer damn people!

    Crowds ruin everything....
    We should be like China; put a limit on the size of families.
    I mean it.
    That'd be a start...

  9. #9
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
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    Re: Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!

    If I ever strike it rich - Bill Gates rich - I would use the money to buy and then cordon off huge tracts of undeveloped land, putting in a perpetual easment precluding devlopment.

    If I ever get the means to do so, I plan to buy as much of thr 120 acres behind us as I can - and that done, I'll do everything in my power to see it's never touched by a godamn bulldozer or polluted by a McMansion.

    I'd like to see the Masses cordoned off into huge slums and fed on Soylent Green....

  10. #10
    TC
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    Re: Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!

    I thiink what we need to do is get control of our borders. The largest poplulation growth in the last 40 years has been in immigrants, both illegal and legal. To handle the illegal problem, we need to slam employers who hire them... HARD.Once word gets around, and it travels fast iin Spanish, the border s will quiet down. Does the current congress have the guts to do it? Does the president care? I think that we know the answer to that question.

    To accommodate more people and traffic, we need to simply build more highways and have state limitiations on the types of growth that will happen. That hasd a better chance of success.
    The only way to control the borders is to make it legal to kill anyone coming in illegally.
    You build more highways and you get more traffic.

  11. #11
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    Re: Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!

    Quote Originally Posted by TC
    I thiink what we need to do is get control of our borders. The largest poplulation growth in the last 40 years has been in immigrants, both illegal and legal. To handle the illegal problem, we need to slam employers who hire them... HARD.Once word gets around, and it travels fast iin Spanish, the border s will quiet down. Does the current congress have the guts to do it? Does the president care? I think that we know the answer to that question.

    To accommodate more people and traffic, we need to simply build more highways and have state limitiations on the types of growth that will happen. That hasd a better chance of success.
    The only way to control the borders is to make it legal to kill anyone coming in illegally.
    You build more highways and you get more traffic.

    Who says the only way to control the borders is to kill anyone coming in? Thats right wing hokum. If you make it difficult to hire these people, they won't come in. Illegal immigration only became a problem because of economic conditions in Mexico. Those conditions were brought on by the Maquillidora factories, which drew farmworkers to the north of Mexico in hope of higher wages. When they saw that they could make $3.35 per hour by crossing the border, they did. And, why not?

    If we weren't so quick to hire them, they may not have crossed the boarder in search of work. We need to clamp down on employers who hire illegals. That is a far more humane way of dealing with the problem than shooting someone. We haven't even tried to hang the employers who hire these people, so how can you say that it won't work?

    Second, who says that building more highways means more traffic? We haven't built any new highways to amount to anything since 1975. Most of the supposed increase in interstate mileage has come from converting non-interstate highways to interstate routes. Thats like converting Burger King jobs into manufacturing positions to make manufacutring employment look good! Even including the conversion, the Interstate highway system lane mileage has been growing at the astronomical rate of 0.2 percent per year!!! To say that we can't build our way out of congestion is pure nonsense. Again, we haven't even tried. More highways doesn't mean more congestion. That is because there are no new highways. See how neat that works out?

    Fact is, people aren't going away, and unless we want to be choking in traffic and smog, we need to build more highways. If they need to be toll roads, so be it. I am willing to pay a reasonable sum of up to 10 cents per mile for a smoother, faster ride than we're getting now. Of course, if the new toll roads are saddled with the same archane speed regulations that we have on our interstates now, then forget it. It still stands that we need more lanes on our hgihways.

    The kind of congestion that we are getting is the direct result of urban sprawl, a phenomenon caused by loose credit, poor local and county zoning practices, and retailers insatiable demand for parking and retail square footage.

    There is no doubt that the model is broken, but you can't blame it on the existance of highways.

  12. #12
    D_E_Davis
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    Re: Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!

    Most of what you have said here makes sense, but...

    Quote Originally Posted by swamprat
    If we weren't so quick to hire them, they may not have crossed the boarder in search of work. We need to clamp down on employers who hire illegals. That is a far more humane way of dealing with the problem than shooting someone. We haven't even tried to hang the employers who hire these people, so how can you say that it won't work?
    The illegals get hired because citizens don't want the low-paid, dirty, tedious jobs. A good part of the problem is that there are many more of these bottom-tier jobs than there are applicants. Do I have a solution - no! But, as long as there are vacancies migrants will continue to bust their b***s trying to get them.


  13. #13
    TC
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    Re: Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!

    If you make it difficult to hire these people, they won't come in. Illegal immigration only became a problem because of economic conditions in Mexico. Those conditions were brought on by the Maquillidora factories, which drew farmworkers to the north of Mexico in hope of higher wages. When they saw that they could make $3.35 per hour by crossing the border, they did. And, why not?
    "And why not?" you say. Because they are illegal immigrants of course.
    Shoot the B's as they cross over and toss the bodies back into Mexico.
    This would solve the problem very quickly.

  14. #14
    TC
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    Re: Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!

    [Second, who says that building more highways means more traffic? We haven't built any new highways to amount to anything since 1975. Most of the supposed increase in interstate mileage has come from converting non-interstate highways to interstate routes. Thats like converting Burger King jobs into manufacturing positions to make manufacutring employment look good! Even including the conversion, the Interstate highway system lane mileage has been growing at the astronomical rate of 0.2 percent per year!!! To say that we can't build our way out of congestion is pure nonsense. Again, we haven't even tried. More highways doesn't mean more congestion. That is because there are no new highways. See how neat that works out?

    Fact is, people aren't going away, and unless we want to be choking in traffic and smog, we need to build more highways. If they need to be toll roads, so be it. I am willing to pay a reasonable sum of up to 10 cents per mile for a smoother, faster ride than we're getting now. Of course, if the new toll roads are saddled with the same archane speed regulations that we have on our interstates now, then forget it. It still stands that we need more lanes on our hgihways.

    The kind of congestion that we are getting is the direct result of urban sprawl, a phenomenon caused by loose credit, poor local and county zoning practices, and retailers insatiable demand for parking and retail square footage.

    There is no doubt that the model is broken, but you can't blame it on the existance of highways.
    The only reason we have urban sprawl is because the present highways allow people to travel better and quicker.
    Build more roads and you will get more urban sprawl and more traffic.
    To prevent urban sprawl we need to limit lot and house sizes.

  15. #15
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    Re: Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!

    Quote
    The only reason we have urban sprawl is because the present highways allow people to travel better and quicker.
    Build more roads and you will get more urban sprawl and more traffic.
    To prevent urban sprawl we need to limit lot and house sizes.

    Limiting lot and house size is one way with dealing with the sprawl situation. That is the part of the model that is broken. The other thing that needs to be done is to limit retail stores and their parking requirements. Big box stores like Wal-Mart, Target, Old Navy, Burlington Coat Factory, Staples, Office Max, and countless others should simply not be allowed to be built anymore until their parking lots operate at at least 80 percent of their capacity overal. At this point, the onlyconcrete and asphalt surfaces that are operating under capacity are retail store shopping strips.

    If present trends continue and we do nothing, our highways will run at an average speed of around 26 mph.

    The porblem is not only in urban areas, the problem is mainly on rural interstate highways which have seen a 400 percent increase in travel since 1975 with a less than 6 percent increase in their capacity. We need new highways, but there needs to be a way to control the sprawl around them. Limiting the number of interchanges is one way. A problem with the current interstate system is that local politicians have gotten into the act by requesting that that extra exits be built at everyone elses expense. You can guess what comes afterward.

    Building more highways doesn't necessarily mean sprawl. This problem really began in the 1980's withthe start of deinndustrialization, the expansion of public and private debt and the reduction in interest rates.


  16. #16
    TC
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    Re: Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!

    Quote Originally Posted by swamprat
    Quote
    The only reason we have urban sprawl is because the present highways allow people to travel better and quicker.
    Build more roads and you will get more urban sprawl and more traffic.
    To prevent urban sprawl we need to limit lot and house sizes.

    Limiting lot and house size is one way with dealing with the sprawl situation. That is the part of the model that is broken. The other thing that needs to be done is to limit retail stores and their parking requirements. Big box stores like Wal-Mart, Target, Old Navy, Burlington Coat Factory, Staples, Office Max, and countless others should simply not be allowed to be built anymore until their parking lots operate at at least 80 percent of their capacity overal. At this point, the onlyconcrete and asphalt surfaces that are operating under capacity are retail store shopping strips.

    If present trends continue and we do nothing, our highways will run at an average speed of around 26 mph.

    The porblem is not only in urban areas, the problem is mainly on rural interstate highways which have seen a 400 percent increase in travel since 1975 with a less than 6 percent increase in their capacity. We need new highways, but there needs to be a way to control the sprawl around them. Limiting the number of interchanges is one way. A problem with the current interstate system is that local politicians have gotten into the act by requesting that that extra exits be built at everyone elses expense. You can guess what comes afterward.

    Building more highways doesn't necessarily mean sprawl. This problem really began in the 1980's withthe start of deinndustrialization, the expansion of public and private debt and the reduction in interest rates.

    Lots of good points there.

  17. #17
    mrblanche
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    Re: Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!

    Quote Originally Posted by swamprat

    3. Neglect of our highway system - We have like 3x as much car traffic as we had in 1973, but we have maybe 6 percent more highways at the most. We need to go on a crash program to double the size of the limited access highway system. We need more roads. To offset the costs, states need to put an immediate moratiorum on all state and U.S. highway system expansion and concentrate on building interstate type highways only.
    Can't agree on this, sorry. We need fewer highways, not more. If I had my way, every interstate highway in the country would catch concrete rot and crumble into dust tomorrow. You can't build them fast enough to stay ahead of the population growth, anyway. And, keep in mind I make my living on the interstates.

    We have spent money on freeways when we should have been building better transit systems that can be much more efficient. Freeways are money losers, soaking up huge amounts of capital and land, not to mention wasting the time of those traveling on them. We're not allowed to use them to their potential; we treat them as just big two-lane roads, rather that the rapid travel system they were designed for, with artificially low speed limits and state mandated hindrances to traffic flow, such as the non-enforcement of minimum speeds and split speed limts for trucks, turning them into traveling speed bumps.

  18. #18
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
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    Re: Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!



    Can't agree on this, sorry. We need fewer highways, not more. If I had my way, every interstate highway in the country would catch concrete rot and crumble into dust tomorrow. You can't build them fast enough to stay ahead of the population growth, anyway. And, keep in mind I make my living on the interstates.

    We have spent money on freeways when we should have been building better transit systems that can be much more efficient. Freeways are money losers, soaking up huge amounts of capital and land, not to mention wasting the time of those traveling on them. We're not allowed to use them to their potential; we treat them as just big two-lane roads, rather that the rapid travel system they were designed for, with artificially low speed limits and state mandated hindrances to traffic flow, such as the non-enforcement of minimum speeds and split speed limts for trucks, turning them into traveling speed bumps.
    Well-said. I agree completely...

  19. #19
    gail
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    Re: Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!

    I partially agree with you-- on the part of what you wrote <<We're not allowed to use them to their potential; we treat them as just big two-lane roads, rather that the rapid travel system they were designed for, with artificially low speed limits and state mandated hindrances to traffic flow, such as the non-enforcement of minimum speeds and split speed limts for trucks, turning them into traveling speed bump>>

    As to <<We have spent money on freeways when we should have been building better transit systems that can be much more efficient. Freeways are money losers, soaking up huge amounts of capital and land, not to mention wasting the time of those traveling on them>> Gas taxes more than pay enough to keep our highways in top notch condition, but states keep siphoning off the top of it for all kinds of "worthy" causes.

    The highways could be kept in tip-top condition too, if incentive maintenance was being done, instead of 20-year retirement hiring. After an earthquake in California a few years back an Interstate section was completed in 5 weeks. In Salt Lake City a bridge was dismantled and rebuilt in 6 weeks. There is no need or cause for these endless road construction to be going on. These two were 24-hour a day jobs come rain or shine. Connecticut does its maintenance work at night, as soon as rush hour is over they throw on the lights, work until dawn and the road is open again by Morning Rush Hour.

    As to rapid transit goes, Amtrack is losing money and being constantly subsidize by the government. Probably one of the best systems in this country is in Washington, DC. While they are clean and safe - they too are losing money and are being subsidized. They are also crowded and not very user-friendly for the handicap.

    However, when drove through Houston a few years back we found an expressway that took us lickey-split right through town without a glitch.

    I op for expressways through large towns/cities, no speed limits outside of congested areas, and incentive maintenance.

    Quote Originally Posted by mrblanche
    Quote Originally Posted by swamprat

    3. Neglect of our highway system - We have like 3x as much car traffic as we had in 1973, but we have maybe 6 percent more highways at the most. We need to go on a crash program to double the size of the limited access highway system. We need more roads. To offset the costs, states need to put an immediate moratiorum on all state and U.S. highway system expansion and concentrate on building interstate type highways only.
    Can't agree on this, sorry. We need fewer highways, not more. If I had my way, every interstate highway in the country would catch concrete rot and crumble into dust tomorrow. You can't build them fast enough to stay ahead of the population growth, anyway. And, keep in mind I make my living on the interstates.

    . We're not allowed to use them to their potential; we treat them as just big two-lane roads, rather that the rapid travel system they were designed for, with artificially low speed limits and state mandated hindrances to traffic flow, such as the non-enforcement of minimum speeds and split speed limts for trucks, turning them into traveling speed bumps.

  20. #20
    mrblanche
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    Re: Elizabeth! I'm coming to join ya!

    No, no expressways!!!

    One historian I've heard says that there are 3 items that destroyed our neighborhood society. One was consolidated schools. Another was shopping malls. And the third was freeways. All of them made it easy to sleep in one neighborhood but not be connected to it by any of the usual ties.

    I made several trips back and forth between Colorado and Michigan in my early days, before freeways. I have great memories of little towns, $5 motel rooms, and roadside gas stations and restaurants. I wish we could have it all back, but we can't.

    Have you seen the movie "Cars" yet? Many small towns suffered that fate. Tracing the path of US 66 will show you a lot of them (but you won't find "Radiator Springs!").

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