[Tagging] RFC on two proposals: Motorway indication; Expressway indication

Nathan Edgars II neroute2 at gmail.com
Fri Jul 16 04:21:28 BST 2010

On Thu, Jul 15, 2010 at 9:40 PM, Bill Ricker <bill.n1vux at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Wed, Jul 14, 2010 at 12:32 AM, David ``Smith'' <vidthekid at gmail.com> wrote:
>>  You might be thinking, "what's an expressway?"  The
>> short answer is, it's just like a freeway/motorway but with at-grade
>> intersections.
> Huh?  That's weird to me.
> The only Expressway so named nearby Boston (USA) is fully
> ramp-interchange-controlled-access.

Different states do it differently; the national MUTCD uses freeway
for Interstates and the like, but this is not common usage in many
places. Perhaps "surface expressway" is a less ambiguous term (though
we might want to include roads like Chicago's Lower Wacker, which is
underground but has intersections).
> Around here, the grade-level stop-light studded partially controlled
> access trunk-plus ways are often called Parkways, even if the name
> ends in Boulevard, Drive, or even Road. (Usually with more greener in
> median and/or more verdeant verges than merely utilitarian
> "motorways", and older than WWII too.)

And in some cases those are up to (low) freeway standards, such as
Soldiers Field/Storrow between the Eliot Bridge and Embankment Road
and the Charlesgate elevated spur. The controlled access on parkways
(no matter what the suffix) is usually due to the park agency owning
the land on both sides and thus de facto controlling access. A similar
thing happens in Walt Disney World, where there are some freeways and
some surface expressways.

Route 9 between Boston and Worcester is another type of early
superhighway with some but not too many at-grades; New Jersey
continues to build them. Driveway access is unrestricted but median
crossings are limited (or even nonexistent). This probably does not
qualify as a surface expressway, but in some cases may move traffic
better than one (especially if jughandles keep the left lane clear).

I think there's too much ambiguity in "expressway" or "surface
expressway" to use it by itself as a classification. Ideally we would
have information on how controlled access is (transport agencies may
allow a certain frequency of driveways), but this data is probably
hard to find in many places.
> What really freaks me out are the few cases where an Interstate (US
> national Motorways) spur meets another Interstate's ramp at a
> city-street stoplight controlled grade intersection instead a ramp
> around. http://osm.org/go/ZeV9lnEI . In this case one is a toll road
> and the other free.

Worse: http://www.openstreetmap.org/?lat=39.99331&lon=-78.23826&zoom=15&layers=B000FTF
I-70 itself uses a surface road to get onto the Pennsylvania Turnpike.

lists others.

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