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Thread: Odot

  1. #1

    Default Odot

    Maybe a change at the top of ODOT will do Oklahoma some good?

    Longtime Oklahoma transportation official to retire | NewsOK.com

    Perhaps we can get someone that believes in designing and implementing new interchanges that actually alleviate problems, in lieu of expanding a highway at every point in between and leaving two-lane bridges at the interchanges...

  2. #2

    Default Re: Odot

    I'm sure the cement lobby is busy prepping their recommendaitons!

  3. #3

    Default Re: Odot

    The problem with this is they'll probably replace him with someone that was going to make changes when they were young and they joined ODOT but that person was fed constant bs to the point that they are just like Ridley is now and has been. The only way to alleviate the issues within the organization is to let everyone go and start fresh.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Odot

    I don’t know……but it might be time to bring in somebody from a different state who is better at more timely methods of construction.

    It shouldn’t take about 35 years to rebuild I- 35 from I-40 to the south end of Norman.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Odot

    I would be surprised if his replacement is NOT David Streb.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Odot

    Quote Originally Posted by cafeboeuf View Post
    I would be surprised if his replacement is NOT David Streb.
    I'm not familiar with David Streb. Will he provide a change of pace or can we expect more of the same?

  7. #7

    Default Re: Odot

    Mr Streb was the ODOT official on the stage at the last Public Meeting for the boulevard. I think the video is available on the OKC website.

    I would like to see the "T" in ODOT actually mean something. Presently we have an ODOR - Ok Dept Of Roads and not much more......

  8. #8

    Default Re: Odot

    I like to call it ODOD (Difficulty)!

  9. Default Re: Odot

    I suspect whomever is in charge at ODOT they will want to build new roads and rebuild existing roads. It is what they do and they are one of the few government agencies that can generate their own work. The trick is living a lifestyle that reduces ODOT's influence on your life, especially if you don't like them.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Odot

    Quote Originally Posted by sidburgess View Post
    Kerry is spot on. Don't like ODOT? Stop buying gas.
    I don't think Edmondites are going to walk 20 miles to work. It's a monopoly I tell ya!

  11. #11

    Default Re: Odot

    I'll never understand what people have against roads and parking lots. I must be missing something.
    Don't hassle me, I'm local.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Odot

    Quote Originally Posted by Stew View Post
    I'll never understand what people have against roads and parking lots. I must be missing something.
    Nothing - it is building highways exclusively at the expense of other forms of transportation that can help reduce our dependence on foreign oil that is the primary issue with ODOT.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Odot

    Quote Originally Posted by CaptDave View Post
    Nothing - it is building highways exclusively at the expense of other forms of transportation that can help reduce our dependence on foreign oil that is the primary issue with ODOT.
    Ultimately won't the free market and the electorate dictate the need and arrival of other forms of transportation. I think your average Oklahoma taxpayer is fairly satisfied with the status quo. At least that's my experience but as always I could be wrong.
    Don't hassle me, I'm local.

  14. Default Re: Odot

    As long as we are good with war for cheap oil we will keep building roads, or until we run out of money.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Odot

    Quote Originally Posted by ou48A View Post
    I donít knowÖÖbut it might be time to bring in somebody from a different state who is better at more timely methods of construction.

    It shouldnít take about 35 years to rebuild I- 35 from I-40 to the south end of Norman.
    That is based more on funding methods than a desire to take a long time. Want roads built/rebuilt quickly? Make it a toll road because the bonds are fully funded at the start of a project. For "free roads" it is always limited to how much gas tax money is available from year to year and they can't spend (build) beyond what is budgeted from year to year because the funding past a year is not guaranteed to be there because of the whims of the feds or state legislatures.

    It can be even worse in Texas, US290/Ben White in Austin has been under construction since before my wife moved there in 1989, it was still under construction when we sold our house in South Austin earlier this year. Benham quit doing work in Texas many years ago because TxDOT was a worse cluster(ya know) than ODOT. At least on the engineering side ODOT (and many other state DOT's) are much easier to work with and more logical than TxDOT. Most people that gripe vociferously about ODOT are the people who favor some other forms of transportation over roads. ODOT's main mission as put forth by the Oklahoma legislature is road building, want changes at ODOT or OTA, make changes at the legislative/executive level.

  16. #16

    Default Re: Odot

    Quote Originally Posted by bluedogok View Post
    That is based more on funding methods than a desire to take a long time. Want roads built/rebuilt quickly? Make it a toll road because the bonds are fully funded at the start of a project. For "free roads" it is always limited to how much gas tax money is available from year to year and they can't spend (build) beyond what is budgeted from year to year because the funding past a year is not guaranteed to be there because of the whims of the feds or state legislatures.

    It can be even worse in Texas, US290/Ben White in Austin has been under construction since before my wife moved there in 1989, it was still under construction when we sold our house in South Austin earlier this year. Benham quit doing work in Texas many years ago because TxDOT was a worse cluster(ya know) than ODOT. At least on the engineering side ODOT (and many other state DOT's) are much easier to work with and more logical than TxDOT. Most people that gripe vociferously about ODOT are the people who favor some other forms of transportation over roads. ODOT's main mission as put forth by the Oklahoma legislature is road building, want changes at ODOT or OTA, make changes at the legislative/executive level.
    It’s the funding methods that we need to take a look at.
    In Oklahoma it seems like our legislators dole out funds for road projects based on everyone getting a little. This causes major projects to drag out over a very lengthy time

    TxDOT seems to secure its funding for major projects in a way that leads to much quicker construction. Once started their major projects don’t seem like they are slowed by lack of funding. The reconstruction of Dallas central expressway (US75) took about 8 years. In terms of size and scale it’s probably a bigger project than any road reconstruction project ever undertaken in Oklahoma. It dwarfs OKC’s recent I-40 project.

    A strong ODOT director with armed with the power of persuasion could help change our methods of funding.

  17. #17

    Default Re: Odot

    Quote Originally Posted by Just the facts View Post
    As long as we are good with war for cheap oil we will keep building roads, or until we run out of money.
    You seem to be having a very rough time representing your handle (JTF) as I haven't seen many facts since the handle change. Seems to be mostly your biased opinion or gross misrepresentations for the most part. If you need that to advance your agenda, why not change your name to Spartan II?

  18. #18

    Default Re: Odot

    Quote Originally Posted by sidburgess View Post
    I'm guessing the fact that Texas has a GDP of 1,307,432,000,000 where Oklahoma's is only 160,500,000,000 has something to do with the differences in funding.

    I don't mind comparing Oklahoma to Texas but I think it is easy to forget how very different our economies and states are.

    Our differences in scale shouldn’t be used as an excuse for taking 35 years to rebuild I- 35,,,, a comparatively very small project.

    The way we fund such projects needs improvements.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Odot

    As far as our future transportation goes…..

    It’s..... just a fact…… that as long as the human race is growing we’re going to need more streets and highways.
    It’s the prosperous societies that will build and maintain them.



    The only real question is what will be the fuel choice? On this there is very good news!
    We have new very large supplies of oil and natural gas coming on line
    But it’s GTL that offers us the most promise.
    The potential of GTL is something that I don’t think a lot of people comprehend, including some posters on this thread.
    GTL can be produced at significantly cheaper prices than current gasoline prices.
    But just as important it’s very abundant with supplies that will last well into the next century just with today’s technologies. It can be produced on a scale that can meet the demand. It is even currently blended with gasoline.
    GTL could be produced from entirely North American sources. It doesn’t take up valuable farm land. It burns cleaner than traditional gasoline. It is my strong opinion we should mandate its use and phase it’s usage in over time.

    In time it would make us not only free from non-North American oil but a net energy exporter. This would give us more money to spend on decongestion projects such as light rail in locations where congestion is a major hindrance to the quality of life.

  20. #20

    Default Re: Odot

    Quote Originally Posted by ou48A View Post
    Itís the funding methods that we need to take a look at.
    In Oklahoma it seems like our legislators dole out funds for road projects based on everyone getting a little. This causes major projects to drag out over a very lengthy time

    TxDOT seems to secure its funding for major projects in a way that leads to much quicker construction. Once started their major projects donít seem like they are slowed by lack of funding. The reconstruction of Dallas central expressway (U75) took about 8 years. In terms of size and scale itís probably a bigger project than any road reconstruction project ever undertaken in Oklahoma. It dwarfs OKCís recent I-40 project.

    A strong ODOT director with armed with the power of persuasion could help change our methods of funding.
    While I don't disagree with your assessment, I think its worth pointing out that TxDOT is pretty much broke right now, maybe even more underfunded than ODOT. They are suffering from the same fate that ODOT is (low gas tax collection, poor planning for future projects, etc.) I'm fairly certain that they are not adding any extra road capacity--only resurfacing/maintenance of existing roads--and pretty much everything you see getting built has some sort of toll component. Even new lanes that are added to existing roads, like the upcoming widening of I-35E between Denton and Lewisville (btw I would avoid that area for the next few years) are just the addition of toll lanes, i.e., "Lexus Lanes" with congestion pricing.

    No doubt ODOT needs to address their funding mechanisms, but the root of the problems is, like every other state agency, they have to browbeat the goons at the state capitol for every penny. Until that changes they will constantly be playing catchup. It is ridiculous that the 44/77/235 interchange is going to take as long as it is, but the state can fix it tomorrow if they gave them the funds they need. The state can also look at upping the gas tax, which will have to be voter approved, or start involving OTA in some of their projects to get some toll funding.

  21. #21

    Default Re: Odot

    The railroad cutting right through the area complicates the 235/44 interchange. Getting the railroad to approve changes to a main line might be harder than getting changes in liquor laws through the Oklahoma legislature.

    It takes Texas just as long to do a project if they don't have legislative pressure to do something. The highways in Austin have been ignored by the rest of the state for many reasons, some of it self-inflicted by locals who thought if traffic got bad people would quit moving there...we can all see how well that worked. Like I have stated before, there was a series of articles about highway construction in the Austin area a few years ago in The Austin American Statesman. It mainly focused on what to do about I-35 through Austin but also about other roads in the area, basically the main quote from that series was that the "cheap and easy projects have been done, not it is time for the difficult and expensive projects to begin". Part of the delay in Austin is also due to the fact that many of those issues in the DFW and Houston areas are being addressed and the money should be available in the future to address issues in Austin and San Antonio.

    It took over 10 years to repave I-35 south of Gainesville and about 10+ years to redo Central Expressway out of Downtown Dallas. Some of the funding of Central was helped by light rail funding since that was piggybacked on the highway project. They started it as I moved back to OKC from Dallas. I would venture to say that TxDOT has more issues than ODOT, they just have much more money to overcome those issues. That is from people that I have known who have dealt with both agencies (civil engineers in OKC and DFW/Austin) and some people that I know at TxDOT and who were at ODOT.

  22. #22

    Default Re: Odot

    Quote Originally Posted by Popsy View Post
    why not change your name to Spartan II?
    That's funny! I kinda like Mini-Spart though.

  23. Default Re: Odot

    Quote Originally Posted by Popsy View Post
    You seem to be having a very rough time representing your handle (JTF) as I haven't seen many facts since the handle change. Seems to be mostly your biased opinion or gross misrepresentations for the most part. If you need that to advance your agenda, why not change your name to Spartan II?
    Are you saying we are not involved in the Middle East to ensure cheap oil? Why do you think we are there?

  24. #24

    Default Re: Odot

    For all the criticism ODOT receives for some of its decisions, we should all remember and be thankful for the ODOT employees on the road this Christmas Day trying to make it as safe as possible. I hope for safety for every ODOT truck/plow operator and for them to get home to their families safely.

  25. #25

    Default Re: Odot

    ODOT is driven by legislators, this is why 8-year construction books come out every year. The state is divided into 8 divisions, or regions, with each having a head engineer that assesses (and with local legislator "suggestions" that region's needs. He/she then submits them to planning. And the reason they widen highways first and do the bridges next, generally, is that it is cheaper to widen the highway than do bridgework, so you get more bang for your buck to have a contract to widen interstate and to come back later to widen the bridges. Ridley actually has been a godsend to the Department in terms of managing money and cutting fat from the agency. Coming up the ranks from a tractor operator forty-some years ago he knows the department through and through. I do agree that we need some better looking interchanges instead of the run-of-the-mill ugly beige look, but money is the bottom line. I do like the implementation of the buffalos and scissor-tails, etc., on some new bridges.

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