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Thread: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

  1. #1
    SSEiYah is offline Participating Member
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    Default I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    When is this going to be redone? It is a nasty interchange with how busy I-235 is.

    It looks like the railroad/vehicle bridges to the south will need to be rebuilt to allow for additional lanes, however I do not see any sign of that being done. To the north is perfect, to the south is good...it is like they forgot to redo that one area.

    Does anyone know when this expansion is planned? Completion Date?

  2. #2
    jonno is offline Participating Member
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    It will be done over several phases and take 8+ years. The ramp from Southbound Broadway extension to westbound I-44 is scheduled to start in the next month. Those good areas to the north and south you spoke of were earlier phases of the same project. The whole interchange is complicated because of the presence of multiple utilities, the Deep Fork Creek and a tributary winding through the project site and the railroad. I'll look later and try and post the phases listed in ODOT's 8 year work plan here in this thread.

    P.S. Merry Christmas OKC
    Last edited by jonno; 12-25-2010 at 08:47 AM. Reason: Christmas Greetings

  3. #3
    warreng88 is offline Participating Member
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    Here is a thread I posted almost a year ago about it:

    I-44/I-235 interchange...

  4. #4
    warreng88 is offline Participating Member
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    2 highway construction projects begin in OKC area in 2011

    The Oklahoma Transportation Department says major Oklahoma City area highway construction projects will cause commuters to see more bottlenecking of traffic in north Oklahoma City and backed-up tractor-trailer rigs in the western metro area.

    BY JOHN ESTUS jestus@opubco.com
    Published: December 29, 2010
    It could be another decade before daily traffic gridlock at one of Oklahoma City's busiest highway interchanges gets any better.

    A rebuilding project at the Interstate 235 and Interstate 44 interchange in north Oklahoma City that begins next year could potentially last up to 10 years because much of it remains unfunded, state Transportation Department officials said Tuesday.

    “We're looking at ways of speeding that up,” state Transportation Department Director Gary Ridley said.
    Either way, Oklahoma City metro-area commuters are sure to spend more time hung up in highway traffic in 2011 because of that project and another major highway project beginning next year.

    In the second half of 2011, the Transportation Department will begin the first phase of the $150 million rebuild of the deteriorating I-235 and I-44 interchange.

    Ridley said the project, which will require several phases, is a priority because traffic problems continue to worsen at the interchange.

    Bidding for the $24.8 million first phase of the interchange rebuild will begin early next year, and construction should be under way in the summer, department spokeswoman Brenda Perry said.

    The ramp linking Broadway Extension southbound with I-44 westbound will close temporarily, and lanes on westbound I-44 temporarily will be reduced from three to two.

    Other temporary road closures as a result of the project will be the access road linking I-44 with Western Avenue, the ramp linking NW 63 with Broadway Extension and parts of Grand Boulevard.

    Once complete, the new interchange will be able to comfortably handle up to 170,000 vehicles a day.

    That's a far cry from the typical day today, which sees at least 140,000 vehicles pass through the interchange — nearly double what it was designed to handle when it was built, the Transportation Department said.

    The east and west lanes of I-44 at the interchange were rebuilt in the 1970s, and the north-south lanes of I-235 and Broadway Extension haven't seen many improvements since they were first built in the 1950s, according to the department.

    As a result, rush-hour traffic almost always slows to a crawl at the interchange as the multilane Broadway Extension southbound and I-235 northbound bottleneck into fewer lanes at the interchange. The interchange work will worsen that problem.

    Read the rest of the article:
    http://newsok.com/2-highway-construc...#ixzz19VazOKbx

  5. #5
    semisimple is offline Participating Member
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    Here's a rendering of the new interchange. Two ramps will be upgraded to flyovers but still two ****ty cloverleaf ramps for access to/from I-235 southbound. Still, this is a great improvement.

    http://www.capitolbeatok.com/_webapp...Extension_ramp

  6. #6
    MustangGT is offline Banned
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    Leaving the two "cloverleaf" ramps is ignorant. With what the project is going to ultimatly cost a redisgn to eliminate them should not be that much more. Typical OK road design penny wise and pound foolish. By the time it is finished I wonder how long before it reaches maximum capacity. Try again OK DOT.

  7. #7
    SSEiYah is offline Participating Member
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    Did someone say 10 years?

    Locate low interest credit card, hire 500-1000 workers, work around the clock building the entire project at once (not stages) and be done in a couple months. ODOT likes to poor one bridge pillar a time onsite, stand around and wait for it to set, then wait again for more money for the next pillar..then pour that pilar. The repeat.

    Pay for it later by charging each driver...raise tag fees 30%. Issue Resolved.

  8. #8
    worthy cook's Avatar
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    Exactly. I am usually not for financing but they should get a decent loan, pay it off over time, and get this thing done instead of waiting till we have all cash in hand. 10 years for that interchange is unacceptable.

  9. #9
    hipsterdoofus is offline Participating Member
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    Yeah leaving that cloverleaf is ridiculous - that's the entire problem with that intersection. How pointless.

  10. #10
    CuatrodeMayo's Avatar
    CuatrodeMayo is offline Andrew Stewart
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    The cloverleaves are not being "left" just rebuilt. Also, they will connect into a dedicated ramp, not the main flow of traffic like they are now.
    Please consider the environment before printing this forum post.

  11. #11
    hipsterdoofus is offline Participating Member
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    Quote Originally Posted by CuatrodeMayo View Post
    The cloverleaves are not being "left" just rebuilt. Also, they will connect into a dedicated ramp, not the main flow of traffic like they are now.
    My bad - I see what you mean - they don't connect right in to 235 there....I still hate cloverleafs...

  12. #12
    SkyWestOKC is offline Participating Member
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    Cloverleafs are very inefficient, you reduce traffic to 35 mph, then have them merge on to a flow of traffic trying to exit at 70 mph. Merging a slow stream with a fast stream, with one stream trying to complete a turn while merging. There is a reason you see so many wrecks at them.

  13. #13
    jn1780 is offline Participating Member
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    I guess the I-240/I-35 interchange will take at least 20 years.

  14. #14
    Mesta Parker is offline Participating Member
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    You get what you pay for. Until the public is willing to step up to the plate and provide more funds, ODOT's primary design criteria will continue to be minimizing cost rather than minimizing traffic disruption and there will continue to be terrible road design and long construction periods.

  15. #15
    MustangGT is offline Banned
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    Quote Originally Posted by CuatrodeMayo View Post
    The cloverleaves are not being "left" just rebuilt. Also, they will connect into a dedicated ramp, not the main flow of traffic like they are now.
    I had noticed the setup but it does not alter the basic premise that cloverleafs HAVE NO place in modern traffic operations.

  16. #16
    hipsterdoofus is offline Participating Member
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    Quote Originally Posted by Mesta Parker View Post
    You get what you pay for. Until the public is willing to step up to the plate and provide more funds, ODOT's primary design criteria will continue to be minimizing cost rather than minimizing traffic disruption and there will continue to be terrible road design and long construction periods.
    Not sure that is as much as the problem as the fact that we are a donor state - the feds take our money and give it to other states for roads and such.

  17. #17
    okcpulse's Avatar
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    Quote Originally Posted by Mesta Parker View Post
    You get what you pay for. Until the public is willing to step up to the plate and provide more funds, ODOT's primary design criteria will continue to be minimizing cost rather than minimizing traffic disruption and there will continue to be terrible road design and long construction periods.
    It isn't terrible road design. The two clover leaf ramps that are being reconstructed as clover leaf ramps carry much lower traffic volumes going from southbound Broadway Ext. to eastbound I-44 and from westbound I-44 to southbound I-235. Thus, the flyover ramps are for the higher traffic volumes going from downtown to NW OKC and from Edmond to NW OKC. However, I agree about the timespan.

    Funding is one problem, but funding methods are another. ODOT is forced to be a pay as you go agency because the state is barred constitutionally from borrowing money to fund road construction. There was some flack about the money used to fund the expansion of Broadway Extension. Ultimately the courts ruled that GARVEE bonds cannot be used to fund road projects. That is why Broadway only took two years to widen.

    TxDOT borrows to bridge funding gaps, but the debt load is mounting - according to the Houston Chronicle.
    Continue the Renaissance!!!

  18. #18
    Platemaker's Avatar
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    Not to mention the traffic volume removed from this interchange by being able to cross 44 on Santa Fe.
    Last edited by Platemaker; 12-29-2010 at 07:56 PM. Reason: spelling error

  19. #19
    SSEiYah is offline Participating Member
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    The feds probably want the Edmond commuters to pay for the interchange. I live just south of this interchange but drive to Edmond on a regular basis (outside of rush hour) and half the time I go through this area I see an accident waiting to happen with someone driving too slow trying to merge into traffic. If you are not driving a sports car, that cloverleaf is a pain in the rear to safely merge.

    Recently Forbes Magazine compared the "Best Commuter Cities", Salt Lake City claimed 2, OKC, 4th in the country. After living near SLC, their rebuild of I-15 took a matter of months, not 10 years, maybe we need the Olympics to show up here.

    I see the argument of "discouraging people to live in Edmond and work in OKC", however until the schools in the "inner city" are improved, I do not see many folks living in Edmond moving back to the Inner City Neighborhoods. Sure, you can enroll your kids in the private schools here, but what if you do not have the money for that? If I had kids, I would be moving to the Putnam/Edmond school district ASAP.

    It is what it is, lets step it up a notch OKC and lets build the best freeway system in the country. I am fine with paying a little extra each year on my tag fees if it means I can feel safe driving on the interstates here. I am probably in the minority, and as "Mesta Parker" said "You get what you pay for" He/She is right however. If you need proof, just look at the "new" I-40.

  20. #20
    Larry OKC is offline Participating Member
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    Quote Originally Posted by hipsterdoofus View Post
    Not sure that is as much as the problem as the fact that we are a donor state - the feds take our money and give it to other states for roads and such.
    This used to be true, but recall reading that within the past couple of years, we have finally turned the corner on that...course we will probably never get back all of the money that has been "donated" over the decades.

  21. #21
    Doug Loudenback's Avatar
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    While I certainly have to defer to those of you who have or claim to have expertise about how major interstate intersections might best be constructed, and about which I have no knowledge, I'll simply say that major highway construction is something akin to an art form from my own child-like eyes and I've always enjoyed seeing it and driving it.

    From that perspective, the ODOT graphic of the I-235/I-44 exhcange looks pretty darned cool.

    Click here for a larger view



    The major problem I'd have from this would be gawking and being inattentive to driving as I drove through the elements of this to-me gorgeous structure.

  22. #22
    Thunder is offline Poster
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    Is all of this connecting to the new I-40? Are they actually going to tear down the bridges here? How are they going to divert traffic?

    If I am looking at the right area where people are complaining about the short distance to merge when coming off of I-235 onto westbound I-40, there is actually ...no... short distance to merge. After driving through the loop to get onto I-40, just keep driving straight. You will already be on a dedicated lane. Merge into the next lane at a later time. However, I can see the issue of people trying to get off of I-40 to go southbound on I-235, but that issue is only for dumb drivers. The drivers coming onto I-40 will need to just keep going forward and not to slow down, so that the drivers on I-40 will be able to get into the lane in time for the I-235 loop. Maybe a handy dandy traffic sign informing the drivers, "Do NOT Slow Down!"

    I am seeing other roads beside I-40. No clue what those are... Is the future new blvd to also be connected to this interchange?

    ... Just noticed the North arrow on the picture. Is this correct? Looks like North is the other way?

  23. #23
    kevinpate's Avatar
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    Thunder, they are not discussing where I-235 and I-40 cross. They are discussing a different area that is a few miles north, where I-235 crosses over I-44 (north side of the city)

  24. #24
    bombermwc's Avatar
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    cough cough...hense the name of the thread....cough cough.

    Anyway, I can't see far enough north on the graphic to see if they are taking out the 63rd st. exit and pushing it futher south? Would make sense with how squeezed in it is right now with north bounf merging traffic. If I'm looking at this correctly, then there is a split on the northbound onramp for either 63rd or 235 and you would "exit" 235 jusr barely north of 44 to merge with that other northbound "exit" traffic for 63rd as well as 63rd st traffic from the east bound exit from 44.

    Am I reading that correctly? If so, that's a HUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUGE improvement.

    See picture....red is 63rd street traffic and blue is 235 traffic.
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/43309757@N05/5306011955/

    and does anyone know how to get flikr pics to embed rather than be the stinking link....argh

  25. #25
    warreng88 is offline Participating Member
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    Default Re: I-235 / I-44 Interchange

    Quote Originally Posted by bombermwc View Post
    Anyway, I can't see far enough north on the graphic to see if they are taking out the 63rd st. exit and pushing it futher south? Would make sense with how squeezed in it is right now with north bounf merging traffic. If I'm looking at this correctly, then there is a split on the northbound onramp for either 63rd or 235 and you would "exit" 235 jusr barely north of 44 to merge with that other northbound "exit" traffic for 63rd as well as 63rd st traffic from the east bound exit from 44.

    Am I reading that correctly? If so, that's a HUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUGE improvement.
    That is my understanding of it. I think for those of us who drive here daily, it will be easy. But for those who visit, it might be confusing,

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