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March 28, 2023, 10:26:14 pm
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Author Topic: New Tulsa Interstate (US-412)  (Read 519 times)
swake
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« on: January 20, 2023, 06:06:40 pm »

As most people probably know, Inhoff on his way out of office passed a bill to authorize upgrading US-412 to an Interstate from I-35 to I-49 in Arkansas to connect Tulsa and NW Arkansas. I thought this would take a long time, but Oklahoma is actually doing this pretty much now with federal money.

The largest section of the highway in Oklahoma from I-35 to Catoosa is Interstate quality now with one exception and could be signed at any time. The one exception is an at grade road called Diamond Head Rd by Lake Keystone. An interchange for that road is scheduled to be built in 2029.

The part of the highway from Catoosa to the Cherokee Turnpike is where the road needs big upgrades. My assumption was this would take decades, but Oklahoma got a federal grant and is doing it now, all at once:
https://oklahoma.gov/odot/progress-and-performance/federal-grant-awards/mpdg-grants/mpdg-2022/us-412_priority_improvements_for_interstate_designation.html

$139 million for improvements. 8 new interchanges and six more new bridges. Design work is underway now with construction set to start in mid 2025 and be done by 2028.

When the Arkansas side could be connected at Siloam Springs is another question, but Tulsa could be ready for a new Interstate designation within five years or so.
« Last Edit: January 20, 2023, 06:11:26 pm by swake » Logged
Red Arrow
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« Reply #1 on: January 20, 2023, 06:33:29 pm »

As most people probably know, Inhoff on his way out of office passed a bill to authorize upgrading US-412 to an Interstate from I-35 to I-49 in Arkansas to connect Tulsa and NW Arkansas. I thought this would take a long time, but Oklahoma is actually doing this pretty much now with federal money.

The largest section of the highway in Oklahoma from I-35 to Catoosa is Interstate quality now with one exception and could be signed at any time. The one exception is an at grade road called Diamond Head Rd by Lake Keystone. An interchange for that road is scheduled to be built in 2029.

The part of the highway from Catoosa to the Cherokee Turnpike is where the road needs big upgrades. My assumption was this would take decades, but Oklahoma got a federal grant and is doing it now, all at once:
https://oklahoma.gov/odot/progress-and-performance/federal-grant-awards/mpdg-grants/mpdg-2022/us-412_priority_improvements_for_interstate_designation.html

$139 million for improvements. 8 new interchanges and six more new bridges. Design work is underway now with construction set to start in mid 2025 and be done by 2028.

When the Arkansas side could be connected at Siloam Springs is another question, but Tulsa could be ready for a new Interstate designation within five years or so.


Not everything Inhoff did was bad.
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tulsabug
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« Reply #2 on: January 21, 2023, 10:13:54 am »


Not everything Inhoff did was bad.

Hitler built highways too   Grin
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Red Arrow
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« Reply #3 on: January 21, 2023, 12:26:31 pm »

Hitler built highways too   Grin

Hitler's Aw $hit to attaboy ratio was right up there with the worst in world history.

The Autobahns are really nice though.  I drove on them in 1995.

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LandArchPoke
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« Reply #4 on: January 21, 2023, 05:28:22 pm »

The Silom Springs loop is under engineering already - that's definitely the big portion beside the part from the Verdigris to Cherokee Turnpike that needs to be fully built to interstate standards. It will go around the Northside of town starting somewhere around the casino on the westside and up and around the airport.

The big question is I-244 through downtown going to be required to be upgraded or not. The shoulders and on/off ramps do not meet modern interstate standards. But there's not clear direction from anyone I've talked with whether USDOT will grandfather in that section since it's already an official interestate or whether that section could hold up the fully designation until it is widened. That would require wiring through Greenwood - and the mayor's office, INCOG, and ODOT are already scheming to figure out how to do that if it's needed. Would be a massive mistake - I personally have been advocating still to make the Gilcrease loop the new interstate and decommission I-244. For some reason GT sees it as his legacy of bringing a new interstate through downtown but it's not the 60s-70s anymore... for as much as he gets it he really has some backwards donkey ideas like this that's he's pushing that will ultimately be a negative to his legacy as the jack*** who wanted to widen a highway through Greenwood even after everything that neighborhood/people have endured.

HNTB is doing a study right now on the upgraded needed to the full system so should know exactly what all is needed sometime this year.

The only way I see this interstate actually being useful is if it's extended east beyond NWA and connect it into Jonesboro/on to Memphis that would give a true alternate to I-40 for traffic headed to Colorado/upper west. Extending through the Ozarks would take a lot of $$$
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swake
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« Reply #5 on: January 21, 2023, 08:14:41 pm »

I-244 wouldn't have to be upgraded to be an interstate, it IS an interstate. It would just be numerical shield change.
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LandArchPoke
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« Reply #6 on: January 23, 2023, 11:26:21 am »

I-244 wouldn't have to be upgraded to be an interstate, it IS an interstate. It would just be numerical shield change.

You would think but it's not that simple.

USDOT has the ability to block upgrading I-244 to whatever it would be if they choose to or if they feel there are legitimate safety concerns due to any segment not meeting modern interstate standards even if it's currently a three digit interstate. Which the section through downtown/Greenwood does not meet any modern day requirements (shoulder width, ramp on/off merge areas, neither the east of west interchange come close either). 244 through downtown is the most accident prone area in the State of Oklahoma and the highest concentration of hazardous waste spills in the State of Oklahoma. Particularly the I-244 and US 75 interchange being #1 with the northbound I-244 ramp to US 412 a close runner-up. There's been legitimate safety concerns with many sections of the IDL for a long time that's been ignored. That's why there is little clarity on what is going to have to be done and ODOT, INCOG, and the mayor's office are actively planning on widening I-244 through Greenwood because of that behind closed doors. I'm not joking about that either, they are actually working on a plan to do that with engineers as part of all of the corridor studies underway.

USDOT can grandfather than section in to upgrade it to the new interstate because it is an interstate already, but that does not mean they will. Especially with the current administration and knowing that many people want I-244 removed. Buttigieg and Trottenburg have been here multiple times to talk with leaders about removing 244 and Biden has even identified is as a top candidate for Reconnecting Communities. Last time Buttigieg was in town they spent more time touring Greenwood and talking about I-244 than they did the RAISE grants they announced, that wasn't an accident given it was right before the first round of Reconnecting Communities grant applications were due.  

If USDOT does not grandfather that section in then it would require a major reconstruction to get it to interstate standards. ODOT isn't going to get that money from USDOT either if it involves taking more right-of-way in Greenwood.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2023, 11:44:05 am by LandArchPoke » Logged
SXSW
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« Reply #7 on: January 23, 2023, 12:13:14 pm »

The Silom Springs loop is under engineering already - that's definitely the big portion beside the part from the Verdigris to Cherokee Turnpike that needs to be fully built to interstate standards. It will go around the Northside of town starting somewhere around the casino on the westside and up and around the airport.

The big question is I-244 through downtown going to be required to be upgraded or not. The shoulders and on/off ramps do not meet modern interstate standards. But there's not clear direction from anyone I've talked with whether USDOT will grandfather in that section since it's already an official interestate or whether that section could hold up the fully designation until it is widened. That would require wiring through Greenwood - and the mayor's office, INCOG, and ODOT are already scheming to figure out how to do that if it's needed. Would be a massive mistake - I personally have been advocating still to make the Gilcrease loop the new interstate and decommission I-244. For some reason GT sees it as his legacy of bringing a new interstate through downtown but it's not the 60s-70s anymore... for as much as he gets it he really has some backwards donkey ideas like this that's he's pushing that will ultimately be a negative to his legacy as the jack*** who wanted to widen a highway through Greenwood even after everything that neighborhood/people have endured.

GT will be out by the end of next year.  Hopefully whoever takes the helm understands that widening 244 is a complete non-starter and the only appropriate tasks are either bury the highway through Greenwood ($$$) or route the traffic around the Gilcrease Loop and make 244 an at-grade boulevard between 75 and the LL Tisdale Pkwy
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heironymouspasparagus
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« Reply #8 on: January 23, 2023, 12:17:44 pm »


Not everything Inhoff did was bad.


Just the vast majority of it....

He was against the original changes to highway 33 that led to 412.  Way back when 33 was our worst killing machine in the state.

And he is also one who worked hard to stop the EPA from action related to the chicken-sh$t dumping in eastern OK and western AR.  Because he cared more about getting Tyson money than keeping the Illinois clean.

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swake
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« Reply #9 on: January 23, 2023, 12:25:28 pm »

You would think but it's not that simple.

USDOT has the ability to block upgrading I-244 to whatever it would be if they choose to or if they feel there are legitimate safety concerns due to any segment not meeting modern interstate standards even if it's currently a three digit interstate. Which the section through downtown/Greenwood does not meet any modern day requirements (shoulder width, ramp on/off merge areas, neither the east of west interchange come close either). 244 through downtown is the most accident prone area in the State of Oklahoma and the highest concentration of hazardous waste spills in the State of Oklahoma. Particularly the I-244 and US 75 interchange being #1 with the northbound I-244 ramp to US 412 a close runner-up. There's been legitimate safety concerns with many sections of the IDL for a long time that's been ignored. That's why there is little clarity on what is going to have to be done and ODOT, INCOG, and the mayor's office are actively planning on widening I-244 through Greenwood because of that behind closed doors. I'm not joking about that either, they are actually working on a plan to do that with engineers as part of all of the corridor studies underway.

USDOT can grandfather than section in to upgrade it to the new interstate because it is an interstate already, but that does not mean they will. Especially with the current administration and knowing that many people want I-244 removed. Buttigieg and Trottenburg have been here multiple times to talk with leaders about removing 244 and Biden has even identified is as a top candidate for Reconnecting Communities. Last time Buttigieg was in town they spent more time touring Greenwood and talking about I-244 than they did the RAISE grants they announced, that wasn't an accident given it was right before the first round of Reconnecting Communities grant applications were due.  

If USDOT does not grandfather that section in then it would require a major reconstruction to get it to interstate standards. ODOT isn't going to get that money from USDOT either if it involves taking more right-of-way in Greenwood.

USDOT participated in the complete reconstruction of the north leg of the IDL in the last decade
USDOT has already grandfathered in I-244 as an interstate, it was in fact built as an interstate
INCOG has no plans to widen the IDL by 2050:
https://www.incog.org/Transportation/Connected2050/Connected2050Plan.pdf
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LandArchPoke
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« Reply #10 on: January 23, 2023, 12:58:32 pm »

USDOT participated in the complete reconstruction of the north leg of the IDL in the last decade
USDOT has already grandfathered in I-244 as an interstate, it was in fact built as an interstate
INCOG has no plans to widen the IDL by 2050:
https://www.incog.org/Transportation/Connected2050/Connected2050Plan.pdf

I guess Rich Brierre and mayor's staff were lying to me and others when they said they were working on those plans to widen I-244 to six lanes through Greenwood. Also, the multiple engineers involved in these meetings with INCOG, ODOT, mayor's staff were just having their time wasted talking about how to do it... Good to know. I've been advocating for the removal of parts of the IDL for a long time and there's a lot that goes on in private than you think.

I never said I-244 wasn't an interstate either, it is. It was built as an interstate many decades ago and the section through downtown does not meet modern standards - that is a fact. It is also a fact that no one at the moment knows how USDOT will treat that situation.

Yes, the north and west sections were paid for through the Obama stimulus package in order to 'renovate' those sections along with replacing the bridge across the river. That was also 10+ year ago - things have changed politically significantly since then too and there's a big, big difference of using stimulus funding to expedite projects than getting specific allocations from USDOT to do projects too. ODOT can use much of it's funding how it wants, but you're talking about a $1-2 billion + project if you wanted to widen or tunnel I-244 through Greenwood. ODOT doesn't have the funds to do that in house with regular funding. It would have to come from USDOT, how do you think that request would go over? Please give us a billion + to further destroy Greenwood and take more land - signed ODOT, mayors office, and INCOG. If ODOT wanted to fund that themselves you're talking about taking up 10%+ of allocations they have in their typical 8 year plan (I think the most recent 8 year plan state wide would take $8ish billion to do everything) - isn't going to happen.

Just because it's not on 2050 plan doesn't mean that it's not being discussed.

There are a few community stakeholders (primarily GKFF and some others) that want to make Greenwood into a national park or monument and would involve tunneling I-244 to 'remove' it as part of using funding to rebuild parts of the district through federal funding. Councilor Hall-Harper is even having a few open houses to discuss the pros/cons of turning parts of Greenwood into a national park/monument area - it's on her Facebook pages, etc. There's a lot going on, people just aren't fighting with each other in the press about it, at least not yet.

ODOT, INCOG, others aren't stupid - they know how it would look if they made many of these plans public involving I-244 and their scheming.

USDOT does not have to grant a designation change for I-244 to be I-42 (which is the likely designation per INCOG and others). They can use any reason why as well - which could very well be safety issues.
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swake
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« Reply #11 on: January 23, 2023, 01:48:23 pm »

I guess Rich Brierre and mayor's staff were lying to me and others when they said they were working on those plans to widen I-244 to six lanes through Greenwood. Also, the multiple engineers involved in these meetings with INCOG, ODOT, mayor's staff were just having their time wasted talking about how to do it... Good to know. I've been advocating for the removal of parts of the IDL for a long time and there's a lot that goes on in private than you think.

I never said I-244 wasn't an interstate either, it is. It was built as an interstate many decades ago and the section through downtown does not meet modern standards - that is a fact. It is also a fact that no one at the moment knows how USDOT will treat that situation.

Yes, the north and west sections were paid for through the Obama stimulus package in order to 'renovate' those sections along with replacing the bridge across the river. That was also 10+ year ago - things have changed politically significantly since then too and there's a big, big difference of using stimulus funding to expedite projects than getting specific allocations from USDOT to do projects too. ODOT can use much of it's funding how it wants, but you're talking about a $1-2 billion + project if you wanted to widen or tunnel I-244 through Greenwood. ODOT doesn't have the funds to do that in house with regular funding. It would have to come from USDOT, how do you think that request would go over? Please give us a billion + to further destroy Greenwood and take more land - signed ODOT, mayors office, and INCOG. If ODOT wanted to fund that themselves you're talking about taking up 10%+ of allocations they have in their typical 8 year plan (I think the most recent 8 year plan state wide would take $8ish billion to do everything) - isn't going to happen.

Just because it's not on 2050 plan doesn't mean that it's not being discussed.

There are a few community stakeholders (primarily GKFF and some others) that want to make Greenwood into a national park or monument and would involve tunneling I-244 to 'remove' it as part of using funding to rebuild parts of the district through federal funding. Councilor Hall-Harper is even having a few open houses to discuss the pros/cons of turning parts of Greenwood into a national park/monument area - it's on her Facebook pages, etc. There's a lot going on, people just aren't fighting with each other in the press about it, at least not yet.

ODOT, INCOG, others aren't stupid - they know how it would look if they made many of these plans public involving I-244 and their scheming.

USDOT does not have to grant a designation change for I-244 to be I-42 (which is the likely designation per INCOG and others). They can use any reason why as well - which could very well be safety issues.

Looking at Google Maps, I-244 is already 6 lanes through Greenwood, does have the mandated 12' lanes and 10' and 4' shoulders with a solid barrier. It does have left hand exits, but those are very common in urban areas.

How is I-244 non-compliant?
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LandArchPoke
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« Reply #12 on: January 23, 2023, 02:10:30 pm »

Looking at Google Maps, I-244 is already 6 lanes through Greenwood, does have the mandated 12' lanes and 10' and 4' shoulders with a solid barrier. It does have left hand exits, but those are very common in urban areas.

How is I-244 non-compliant?

Only 4 of the lanes are considered through lanes to 412 which ODOT and others want to make 6. So in parts it would become 4 or even 5 lanes each way - 2 split off on the west interchange to I-244 south and 2 to US 412 which ODOT, INCOG, etc. want to make 3. Also, the section that abuts the last part of Greenwood's commercial main street they would be adding an extra lane to make it 3 through lanes versus 2 now as 1 splits off to US 75 north/south.

The interchanges do not meeting modern standards with as sharp as they are, many of the ramps also have zero shoulders on the east and west northern interchanges.

Same thing with the Cinci/Detroit on/off ramps. They would need to be extended to meet modern standards for merging lanes.

The interchanges become the big issue and they also take up the most space and trying to fix those within the current footprint is not realistic either.
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