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  1. #1

    Default After what happened in Minnesota

    will there be a bigger push to get the new crosstown finished and open sooner than originally planned? I understand we wouldn't want them to cut corners in order to finish alot sooner because we would ultimately be in no better position, but I do believe it could be finished sooner than expected and still have the safety and quality needed.

    Thoughts?

  2. Default Re: After what happened in Minnesota

    That's the first thing I thought of when this happened was OH NO, we better get the crosstown finished before this one comes tumbling down.

  3. #3

    Default Re: After what happened in Minnesota

    My father used to be general counsel for the highway department. He theorized (and I think correctly) that bridges built around that time had a certain type of footing which was poorly conceived. This type of footing is generally not anchored well enough and is generally unstable. Since the crosstown is not in a riverbed, it would be hard to draw comparisons between it and this other bridge. They're not even remotely of the same design.

    If you want to talk about dangerous bridges in Oklahoma City, from looking at the rocker bearings (those things between the bridge itself and its supports which look like this: ( | )

    When those things are leaning, it's bad news. The worst ones in town (by a mile) are over on Belle Isle bridge. That bridge, in my estimation is FAR more dangerous than the crosstown... but since there's no billion dollar freeway planned, something which would put a lot of taxpayer money into the pockets of contractors, this is something we don't really talk about.

    I'm going to say now what I've been saying for a long time: If the crosstown is so damned dangerous, why doesn't ODOT reroute I-40 semi traffic over to I-240? Please don't respond to the hysteria our media is trying to provoke. They are completely clueless in most cases. They are simply reprinting or covering ODOT's (which is owned lock stock and barrel by the contractors they pay) and the highway contractors themselves' press releases.

    If you have any doubt about this, just look back to the days when the media was just hysterical about how much we needed that 10-cent hike on gas tax and how the second after that bill went down in flames, coverage of our terrible roads and bridges suddenly stopped. Don't buy into the hysteria folks.

  4. #4

    Default Re: After what happened in Minnesota

    I don't really feel that I'm buying into the hysteria, I just thought that this would cause the powers-that-be to get the crosstown done a little sooner. I'm no engineer and I don't trust the "experts" (because I feel they have something to gain from their opinion) but I've felt for a long time that the crosstown is in terrible shape.

    When my family walks along the canal, my wife hates to walk under the crosstown because she says it looks like it could collapse at any moment. And she's no expert either, it's just her feeling.

    I hear people say that "if it isn't safe, then ODOT wouldn't let us travel on it" but I'm sure the people in Minnesota thought the same thing.

  5. #5

    Default Re: After what happened in Minnesota

    Quote Originally Posted by traxx View Post
    I don't really feel that I'm buying into the hysteria, I just thought that this would cause the powers-that-be to get the crosstown done a little sooner. I'm no engineer and I don't trust the "experts" (because I feel they have something to gain from their opinion) but I've felt for a long time that the crosstown is in terrible shape.

    When my family walks along the canal, my wife hates to walk under the crosstown because she says it looks like it could collapse at any moment. And she's no expert either, it's just her feeling.

    I hear people say that "if it isn't safe, then ODOT wouldn't let us travel on it" but I'm sure the people in Minnesota thought the same thing.
    The worst part about the Crosstown is that the maintenance has been so-so. Small chunks of concrete will probably fall off from time to time which really is no big deal. As long as those rocker bearings are straight up and down, we'll be fine.

    If you look at the Belle Isle rocker bearings... scary stuff.

  6. Default Re: After what happened in Minnesota

    Gov. Henry approves $125 million for emergency bridge repairs
    March 14, 2006

    (Oklahoma City) In an effort to improve public safety on Oklahoma’s most dangerous bridges, Gov. Brad Henry signed legislation Tuesday that immediately allocates $125 million to repairs across the state of Oklahoma. Senate Bill 1288 by Sen. Johnnie Crutchfield and Rep. Chris Benge is a component of the governor’s Road to Progress initiative.

    “With these emergency funds, we can attack the backlog of bridge repair projects that has plagued Oklahoma for decades,” said Gov. Henry. “Motorists in all four corners of the state will see improvements to make their bridges and overpasses safer.”

    SB 1288 allocates $125 million to emergency bridge repairs. Of that total, $100 million would be administered by the Oklahoma Department of Transportation for state bridge repairs. An additional $25 million is earmarked for bridge repairs in Oklahoma counties.

    According to the Oklahoma Department of Transportation, more than 1,600 Oklahoma bridges need replacement or rehabilitation. More than 3,000 miles of the highway in Oklahoma, or approximately one-fourth of state roads, are in need of replacement or rehabilitation.

    “While this is a significant investment in our highway system, it is only a first step. We must continue to push for a consistent and growing level of revenue for road and bridge maintenance. That is where my focus will be the rest of the legislative session,” said the governor.

    In addition to SB 1288, the governor has called for an annual increase in road and bridge maintenance funding that, combined with legislation from 2005, will pump an additional $2 billion into highways over the next 10 years. Gov. Henry has also proposed the creation of a constitutional lockbox to prevent lawmakers from diverting gas tax revenues to non-highway uses.

    SB 1288 also includes $150 million for the EDGE research fund. Recommended by a task force of public- and private-sector leaders, the EDGE endowment will fund research projects across the state of Oklahoma. Gov. Henry and other EDGE supporters hope to ultimately deposit $1 billion in the fund.

    “To attract the best jobs of the future, we must provide seed capital to fuel high-tech research projects at our universities and private foundations. The EDGE endowment is a sound business investment that will pay many dividends in the future,” said the governor.



    Governor Brad Henry

  7. Default Re: After what happened in Minnesota


    Cherokee Nation Helps State Repair Ailing Area Bridges

    July 05, 2006
    ODOT Director Gary Ridley and Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Chad Smith announce a bridge repair project between the Cherokee Nation and ODOT, for eight bridges in six counties throughout northeastern Oklahoma. The Cherokee Nation provided more than $4.7 million to ODOT for the project.


    Cherokee Nation Helps State Repair Ailing Area Bridges

  8. Default Re: After what happened in Minnesota

    Gov. Henry proposes $520 million boost in road repair funds,
    Creation of lockbox to protect highway dollars
    Gov. Henry proposes $520 million boost in road repair funds, - News Local News Oklahoma Municipal League

  9. Default Re: After what happened in Minnesota


  10. Default Re: After what happened in Minnesota

    Midtown....did you hear the report this week that very plainly showed how the Crosstown was FAR worse off than that bridge in Minnesota? We've been trying to do small maintenance items on it to make it last (and i don't have any fear of it collapsing like that), but it is FAR FAR FAR pas time for it to go for SO MANY REASONS. Not to mention the fact that truckers routinely vote it as the WORSE bridge in the country.

    I just don't see how anyone can support keeping the bridge. If you are so confident of the supports, maybe you haven't seen the ones that are missing large chunck of concrete from their sides or tops. THAT IS a concern. The holes in the road shouldn't ever occur. If it was built right, it wouldn't happen. Next time you are on the bridge and are stopped in traffic, pay attention to how much you can feel the thing vibrate. You shouldn't be able to feel that as much as you can. All that vibration over 40 years just creates stress fractures and you see concrete fall. If conrete falls, that means the metal structure is bending....ever hear of metal fatigue?

    There is no question that it needed to be replaced, and it is happening so you might as well drop any arguement for keeping it because there's no point now. The thing is going to come down, it's just a matter of when the relocation is finished.

  11. Thumbs down Re: After what happened in Minnesota

    NTSB Chairman: Accident an 'Anomaly'
    By H. JOSEF HEBERT and SHARON THEIMER
    Associated Press Writers

    WASHINGTON — The head of the National Transportation Safety Board said Friday people shouldn't fret about general bridge safety across the country, notwithstanding figures showing more than 70,000 are rated structurally deficient.

    "I don't believe that they should be worried at all," NTSB Chairman Mark Rosenker said from the scene of the collapse this week of an interstate highway bridge in Minneapolis.

  12. #12

    Default Re: After what happened in Minnesota

    Quote Originally Posted by Midtowner View Post
    As long as those rocker bearings are straight up and down, we'll be fine.
    I don't think we can really trust that. You stated this opinion comes from your dad who was general counsel for the hwy dept. Nothing against your dad, I'm sure he's a very intelligent man, but I don't trust an attorney to build a bridge or assess it's structural integrity any more than I'd want a structural engineer to represent me in a court of law.

  13. #13

    Default Re: After what happened in Minnesota

    Since the crosstown is not in a riverbed
    Hmm maybe not technically, however, the river has been moved, so at one point, I believe the river was near that location - I know when the city center garage was built, the water table was not very low below the surface up here in downtown...had lots of gushers from the drilling.

  14. #14

    Default Re: After what happened in Minnesota

    Quote Originally Posted by traxx View Post
    I don't think we can really trust that. You stated this opinion comes from your dad who was general counsel for the hwy dept. Nothing against your dad, I'm sure he's a very intelligent man, but I don't trust an attorney to build a bridge or assess it's structural integrity any more than I'd want a structural engineer to represent me in a court of law.
    He spent a lot of time there working with engineers. He was actually General Counsel for several years before taking an appointment to the AG's office. While he's not a highway engineer, he knew just about as much as a non-engineer could ever know about these projects.

    He didn't build or assess structural integrity, but he's had to represent the Highway Department (the forerunner of ODOT) in various matters involving the assessment of structural integrity, maintenance, new construction, etc. I generally would take his assessment of these things over most other peoples'.

    And yes, the crosstown is in disrepair. That much is obvious. If it were dangerous, it'd be closed. The crosstown is of a completely different design than the bridge in Minneapolis-St. Paul, so any failure would likely be preceded by a fair amount of warning.

    Also, I'll stand by my statement that the Belle Isle bridge is in awful condition as well. Again, just look at the rocker bearings.

  15. #15

    Default Re: After what happened in Minnesota

    The bottom line is America's infrastructure is crumbling. A congressman proposed investing half a trillion dollars to bring our nation's infrastructure up to par with those of other industrialized powers. Another congressman agreed that it needs to be done, but then asked, "Where are we going to get that kind of money?" The congressman proposing the outlay said, "We didn't have the $500,000,000,000.00 (500 billion) for Iraq either - but we're spending it!"

    It's a matter of priorities.

  16. Default Re: After what happened in Minnesota

    Quote Originally Posted by Midtowner View Post
    He spent a lot of time there working with engineers. He was actually General Counsel for several years before taking an appointment to the AG's office. While he's not a highway engineer, he knew just about as much as a non-engineer could ever know about these projects.

    He didn't build or assess structural integrity, but he's had to represent the Highway Department (the forerunner of ODOT) in various matters involving the assessment of structural integrity, maintenance, new construction, etc. I generally would take his assessment of these things over most other peoples'.

    And yes, the crosstown is in disrepair. That much is obvious. If it were dangerous, it'd be closed. The crosstown is of a completely different design than the bridge in Minneapolis-St. Paul, so any failure would likely be preceded by a fair amount of warning.

    Also, I'll stand by my statement that the Belle Isle bridge is in awful condition as well. Again, just look at the rocker bearings.
    You're starting to sound like Mr. A with all this DAD talk........hee hee hee......jk

  17. #17

    Default Re: After what happened in Minnesota

    I know nothing about road building, but am wondering why the I-40 relocation will take 5 more years. I don't remember the Kilpatrick taking that long. Why can you not tell the company building the road you want it done sooner? With the profits generated by a construction project of that sort, you would think they could hire more people and purchase more equipment. Since projects are bid upon, the sooner they are completely, the less you have to worry about increases in salaries and materials. What am I missing?

    The sooner we have that portion of I-40 on the ground, the happier I will be. I avoid that stretch like the plague.

  18. #18

    Default Re: After what happened in Minnesota

    Quote Originally Posted by Midtowner View Post
    He spent a lot of time there working with engineers. He was actually General Counsel for several years before taking an appointment to the AG's office. While he's not a highway engineer, he knew just about as much as a non-engineer could ever know about these projects.

    He didn't build or assess structural integrity, but he's had to represent the Highway Department (the forerunner of ODOT) in various matters involving the assessment of structural integrity, maintenance, new construction, etc. I generally would take his assessment of these things over most other peoples'.

    And yes, the crosstown is in disrepair. That much is obvious. If it were dangerous, it'd be closed. The crosstown is of a completely different design than the bridge in Minneapolis-St. Paul, so any failure would likely be preceded by a fair amount of warning.

    Also, I'll stand by my statement that the Belle Isle bridge is in awful condition as well. Again, just look at the rocker bearings.
    I get your point. I had assumed that he had worked closely alongside engineers. But I'd rather take the word of an engineer (whose independant of the politics of ODOT and therefore has nothing to gain by giving a less than honest assessment of the situation) who had spent years of schooling to gain a degree in structural engineering.

    My wife used to work alongside of doctors for years and was in the surgery room during some brain surgeries. She's a very intelligent women (IQ 142) and knew about as much as any non doctor in the practice could know, but I still wouldn't trust her to open me up and operate.

    Do you get my point? I'm not taking anything away from your dad, but I can't take your statement of "we'll be fine" on faith. Yes, I know the media has a tendancy to sensationlize things but I do feel we have a reason to be concerned about the crosstown. I know you say the Belle Isle bridge is worse (and may be) but right now I'm talking about the crosstown.

    And I don't trust the experts at ODOT who say that our bridges are fine and there's nothing to worry about. I listened to the same rhetoric from "experts" around 1997 when a guy few of us had heard of at the time (Osama Bin Laden) swore death to all Americans and we were told not to worry. Look where that not worrying got us in 2001. I'm just saying that these experts have something to gain by saying everything will be okay - namely their reputation as an agency.

  19. #19

    Default Re: After what happened in Minnesota

    Quote Originally Posted by Misty View Post
    You're starting to sound like Mr. A with all this DAD talk........hee hee hee......jk
    die die die.


  20. #20

    Default Re: After what happened in Minnesota

    good one Misty, that's classic OKCTalk talk for you.

  21. Default Re: After what happened in Minnesota

    Since we're talking about dads, mine designed expansion joints for a living, and he'd drive 20 miles out of his way to avoid the crosstown.

    And that $125 million is juuuuuust enough to put a sign on all the crappy bridges saying "DON'T DRIVE ACROSS ME!".

  22. Talking Re: After what happened in Minnesota

    OK........ all of you kids, enough with the Daddy - O talk. Go to your rooms!

    Reminds me of a Joke:

    1st Kid: My DAD can Beat Up Your Dad.

    2nd Kid: When?

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