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VA I-495 construction
Posted by: Deathrace 2011 ()
Date: March 20, 2011 09:25AM

Is it me or is VA portion of I-495 set up like a go-cart track at the moment?

Poor or no signs marking make-shift exits/merges; narrow jagged/twisty lanes with poor markings; Jersey barriers inches from the lane lines; debris. Add that to the semi-conscious driving of our friends and neighbors and its getting real sporty out there no?

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Re: VA I-495 construction
Posted by: Kilton ()
Date: March 20, 2011 09:40AM

Yep, VDOT considers this acceptable. Safety clearly isn't their top priority.

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Re: VA I-495 construction
Posted by: dono ()
Date: March 20, 2011 09:54AM

LOL had a guy in a truck try and pass me on the right from behind in the right lane where the lane was ending. I sped up to allow him to squeeze in behind me. My exit was coming up so I obviously stayed in the right lane at a safe distance (3-4 car lengths at 55mph). I look in the rear view and the guy is 2 feet off my bumper! He was pissed at ME!

When I exited less than 30 seconds later I saw him shoot by weaving into the middle then left lanes - he was not even exiting. How do these people survive the day without wrecking?

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Re: VA I-495 construction
Posted by: reality ()
Date: March 20, 2011 10:47AM

Don't you remember that orange HotWheels track as a kid? It had "jersey walls" on the side to keep your car in the lane. That was your practice time - Pull out the old HotWheels track and brush up!

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Re: VA I-495 construction
Posted by: KeepOnTruckin ()
Date: March 20, 2011 10:56AM

The HOV exit from 66 east to 495 is ridiculous! How is anybody supposed to make that turn without slowing down enough to screw over every other driver who is continuing on 66 east. And what if you want to go towards Springfield? You practically have to drive through the construction site to get to the other side

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Re: VA I-495 construction
Posted by: say ()
Date: March 20, 2011 01:49PM

The Lexus Lane project is definitely the most dangerous thing I've ever seen. What amazes me is that there are usually several hours between crashes, maybe we don't drive so bad after all!

Those fucking Aussies that are building it already owe me two rims from hitting their bomb craters out there. Those motherfuckers will never see a dime of mine. If it gets to the point that you have to pay them to go to Tyson's, I ain't going!

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Re: VA I-495 construction
Posted by: waza ()
Date: March 22, 2011 05:53AM

"Those fucking Aussies that are building it " -

Close but cigar. Fluor, a Texas company, is doing the building. But you're right, TRANSURBAN - a Melbourne, Australia company - has the rights to operate this 'public private partnership'. For EIGHTY YEARS! This Melbourne company will have input into any new 'free' roads planned to alleviate traffic in Northern Va/Fairfax and in can legally BLOCK improvements they show will impact the 'profitability' of the Lexus Lanes (e.g. by reducing congestion...) Amazing we actually elect local legislature who sign off on these contracts.

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Re: VA I-495 construction
Posted by: Radiophile ()
Date: March 22, 2011 06:49AM

waza Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> "Those fucking Aussies that are building it " -
>
> Close but cigar. Fluor, a Texas company, is doing
> the building. But you're right, TRANSURBAN - a
> Melbourne, Australia company - has the rights to
> operate this 'public private partnership'. For
> EIGHTY YEARS!

Um 75 years. And the builder is a joint venture between Fluor and Lane Construction. Fluor-Lane is a limited liability corporation with an office and place of business in
Alexandria, Virginia.


> This Melbourne company will have
> input into any new 'free' roads planned to
> alleviate traffic in Northern Va/Fairfax and in
> can legally BLOCK improvements they show will
> impact the 'profitability' of the Lexus Lanes
> (e.g. by reducing congestion...) Amazing we
> actually elect local legislature who sign off on
> these contracts.

True. But if the nimrods would vote for a regional tax to support building more roads, we would not need to to do this. But when someone suggests raising the sales tax to support roads, people start whining like you are killing their dog.

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Re: VA I-495 construction
Posted by: waza ()
Date: March 22, 2011 07:00AM

radiophile -

thanks for the corrections. the llc was set up just for this project and I was including build the years for transurban. the contract outlines years to build followed by years to operate.

if you're still reading this thread, another thing I heard about the lexus lane deal was the contract called for no more then 25% of traffic would be 'high-occupancy' (e.g. 75% of traffic would be 'billable' for this 'value' lane). if high-occupancy exceeds 25% than the Fairfax tax-payer will have to cover the shortage for Transurban. You know anything about this?

On the tax comment, watch the Amazon vs Illinois battle. The day will end when those goods being delivered to online-shoppers by fedex/ups vehicles tearing up the roads will call for a sales tax.

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Re: VA I-495 construction
Posted by: Radiophile ()
Date: March 22, 2011 07:08AM

waza Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> radiophile -
>
> thanks for the corrections. the llc was set up
> just for this project and I was including build
> the years for transurban. the contract outlines
> years to build followed by years to operate.

OK......
>
> if you're still reading this thread, another thing
> I heard about the lexus lane deal was the contract
> called for no more then 25% of traffic would be
> 'high-occupancy' (e.g. 75% of traffic would be
> 'billable' for this 'value' lane). if
> high-occupancy exceeds 25% than the Fairfax
> tax-payer will have to cover the shortage for
> Transurban. You know anything about this?

Not sure exactly what the numbers are, but yes this is true. Except Fairfax County will not get the bill, VDOT will.

> On the tax comment, watch the Amazon vs Illinois
> battle. The day will end when those goods being
> delivered to online-shoppers by fedex/ups vehicles
> tearing up the roads will call for a sales tax.

Amazon is already taxing VA purchases. They have a warehouse in Richmond area so they have a "presence" here and can not argue they can not tax here.

I know there is whole other book that could be written written on online purchases and taxes, but in the past if you had no "business presence" in a state, you did not have to collect sales tax for that state. Amazons warehouse counts as a business presence.

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Re: VA I-495 construction
Posted by: waza ()
Date: March 22, 2011 07:17AM

wasnt aware. thanks Radiophile!

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Re: VA I-495 construction
Posted by: dono ()
Date: March 22, 2011 07:20AM

I didnt know Lexus Lanes LLC would have a say in projects potentially alleviating congestion/profitability of 'their' road. I would love to see the source on that if available.

Welcome to the world of privatizing public land and roads. Had we built light rail in place of Lexus Lanes we could get thousands of cars off the road and provide affordable travel to ourselves and our children for a century.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/22/2011 07:21AM by dono.

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Re: VA I-495 construction
Posted by: waza ()
Date: March 22, 2011 08:10AM

dono Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I didnt know Lexus Lanes LLC would have a say in
> projects potentially alleviating
> congestion/profitability of 'their' road. I would
> love to see the source on that if available.
>
> Welcome to the world of privatizing public land
> and roads. Had we built light rail in place of
> Lexus Lanes we could get thousands of cars off the
> road and provide affordable travel to ourselves
> and our children for a century.


dono - the language on this was cloaked in legaleze from http://www.transburban.com investor presentation circa 2008-2009. unfortunately i dont have the document but it can probably be escavated at transurban, dot.va or va.gov. PPPs typically hand over the profits to the privateco, while leaving the risks to the taxpayer, often because high-voltage corporate lawyers are able to run circles around less-sophisticate local legislators (and treat them to sweet perks during the bidding to grease the process along.)

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Re: VA I-495 construction
Posted by: Gordon Blvd ()
Date: March 23, 2011 11:54PM

VDOT is a tool

and I dont mean that as an insult

they are an actual physical "tool" of the state and the county

meaning, they really dont have the power, like legally, to run themselves the way they want to

I went to the HQ to talk about jersey walls on US 1 today - and had a 20 minute meeting with one of the engineers - and TOTALLY got schooled on how the County and State politix, and businesses totally fuck them over - VERY eye opening

if you ever want to know why shit is the way it is, take some time and just go over there and ask - you'll prolly meet someone who will tell you why shit is

Basically, we the public are too busy (or too weak) to tell OUR reprsentitives, commissioners, county supervisors, state senators, what the fuck we want

but the POWER PEOPLE who live around here, the busniesses, and the agencies, THEY KNOW HOW TO DO THAT SHIT

which is why we have Lexus Lanes

which is why we cant get shit widened

which is why have unsafe roads

The dude I met with - he totally got what I was saying - but legally, VDOT really cant do shit, even though they are stuck with maintaining the roads
they cant force businesses to pay for improvements (cause the County and State wont back them up, will side with the business)

it is all about $$$$$$$$$$ - and since VDOT only gets $$$$ from tax dollars, and businesses have more $$$$$$ (and more lawyers and more political clout), they win

which is why traffic sux in this area

:(

he's explaining this to me, and I totally got it

cause if Fairfax County is making the call, who do you think they are gonna listen to more? VDOT or the Chamber of Commerce? You tell me, right?
Attachments:
money.jpg

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