Author Topic: usaak (Alaska State Highways)  (Read 2428 times)

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Offline yakra

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Re: usaak (Alaska State Highways)
« Reply #30 on: February 13, 2018, 04:17:57 pm »
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Even if the state is treating the closures as temporary?
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I discuss the IN 912 precedent above. Basically, that closure was thought to be permanent, only that (assumed?) decision was reversed later,
A closure for repairs or (re)construction that lasts weeks, or even a few months, is one thing. But if a closure lasts several years with no definite plans or specific time frame to reopen, that's another...

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prompting some grumbling from people who'd clinched the route before what turned out to be a temporary closure.
Yes, their maps won't show a small segment, and their precise mileages won't be exactly tickety-boo. But they'd still be able to mark a 100% clinch of what we do have in the system.
On the flipside, consider the traveler who visits Cordova, and dutifully drives everything open and accessible, only to return home a few thousand miles away, check the HB, and find... SURPRISE! He Got Robbed! There's a section of the route listed in the HB that's not traveled, and not able to be traveled.
IMO the plight of this latter group of travelers outweighs that of the first group.
Ultimately we should be working towards something that makes it easy for users to plan, execute, and document their travels.

Coordinates:
If point coords / OSM are a moving target, it's probably not worth the hassle of making however-many passes to tighten them up.

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One, for AK 10 (Cordova), is an exception for a route the state has tried to sign, only to be frustrated by persistent sign vandalism.
I thought about this history as I considered the route. Didn't they state relent, and stop attempting to sign the route? That makes it a de facto unsigned route. (For whatever reason, the state is not signing it.)

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Another, for both segments, is to limit exceptions to jurisdictions that don't assign or post route numbers for most of their highways (in Alaska, there are hundreds of state-maintained highways, but only about two dozen have route numbers).
Maine is not 100% dissimilar. We have loads of unnumbered state & state-aid highways, without posted route numbers, only internal inventory route numbers similar to the six-digit codes AK DOT uses. If "ME1C" & "ME5B" have ordinary "touring route" numbers but are unsigned, should they be included? I say they should not.
Such an exception could be used to justify all kinds of inclusions, ones that might not be Good Things.

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I think we've relaxed the unsigned routes rule in systems and jurisdictions outside North America where route signage practices are different than those in most of the U.S. and Canada. Right?
I can't speak with any knowledge here; I've paid much less attention to the goings-on outside North America.

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No, I included points for all the pump stations that are on or near AK 11, AK 2, or AK 4. Only gaps in the number sequence are where the station is far from the highway, or was never built.
Hm. Are they really useful to most regional travelers who'd be using this site though. If they're not needed for shaping or breaking up long visible distance, I'd say nix them.

Offline mapcat

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Re: usaak (Alaska State Highways)
« Reply #31 on: February 13, 2018, 06:02:59 pm »
Re the temporary/indefinite closure, what's the harm in plotting the route as-is for now, then adding the connecting segment in the future when it reopens? Anyone who had clinched it prior to the closure could then add in the resurrected segment and count the route as clinched again. The same will probably happen when IN 912 is reconnected.
Clinched:

Offline oscar

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Re: usaak (Alaska State Highways)
« Reply #32 on: February 13, 2018, 06:19:35 pm »
Just a partial response for now. More to follow.

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One, for AK 10 (Cordova), is an exception for a route the state has tried to sign, only to be frustrated by persistent sign vandalism.
I thought about this history as I considered the route. Didn't they state relent, and stop attempting to sign the route? That makes it a de facto unsigned route. (For whatever reason, the state is not signing it.)

"Relent" is not really the right word. "Give up" is more like it, once the state realized that it was a waste of time and money to post route markers that would quickly disappear. But the state still includes the route in its short official list of numbered state highways, and shows it on tourist maps. Also, the popular private Milepost guide to Arctic highways identifies it as part of AK 10 (along with AK 10's Chitina segment, which is signed). The route designation is not exactly kept a secret from travelers, much as many Cordova residents might prefer otherwise.

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No, I included points for all the pump stations that are on or near AK 11, AK 2, or AK 4. Only gaps in the number sequence are where the station is far from the highway, or was never built.
Hm. Are they really useful to most regional travelers who'd be using this site though. If they're not needed for shaping or breaking up long visible distance, I'd say nix them.

Most or all of them serve one or both purposes. Especially in the almost completely unpopulated areas north of Fairbanks, where the majority of pump stations are located, you can't be too choosy about waypoints.

While the pump stations are unlikely turnaround points for tourists, they are destinations for pipeline workers, and contractors or vendors providing services or supplies to the stations. Kind of like our waypoint for I-5 exit 62 within the Camp Pendleton Marine Corps base, where you need a military ID or other authorization to leave or enter the base, or otherwise to bike or hike the bike trail which roughly parallels the Interstate north of exit 62.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2018, 06:53:36 pm by oscar »

Offline oscar

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Re: usaak (Alaska State Highways)
« Reply #33 on: February 13, 2018, 06:40:44 pm »
Re the temporary/indefinite closure, what's the harm in plotting the route as-is for now, then adding the connecting segment in the future when it reopens? Anyone who had clinched it prior to the closure could then add in the resurrected segment and count the route as clinched again. The same will probably happen when IN 912 is reconnected.

Most of the disconnected segment still gets some tourist travel. They can't drive their own (or rental) vehicles, but a tour operator will ferry them across the river and then use a vehicle stationed east of the bridge closures to drive them the rest of the way to the Million Dollar Bridge near the route's east end.

We could split the Cordova segment at the main channel of the Copper River, about two-thirds of the way between GraPitRd and GoatMtnTr. 

Offline Duke87

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Re: usaak (Alaska State Highways)
« Reply #34 on: February 13, 2018, 08:27:39 pm »
How long is the actually closed segment?

If it were literally just the length of a bridge and I were able to drive up to both ends of the bridge, I would call it good and consider the route clinched in spite of the closure. This is my routine method of handling bridges closed for construction in the lower 48, and we don't go putting gaps in routes for those.

I'd also argue that just because a segment of a route is closed for construction doesn't mean it temporarily ceases existing. Rather than breaking the route in the HB, I would continue including it. It is then up to the individual traveler to determine whether to drive up to each end of the closure and call it good, or decide the route cannot be clinched until the closed section reopens and they need to return at a later date or postpone their trip accordingly.

Offline oscar

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Re: usaak (Alaska State Highways)
« Reply #35 on: February 13, 2018, 09:29:01 pm »
How long is the actually closed segment?

If it were literally just the length of a bridge and I were able to drive up to both ends of the bridge, I would call it good and consider the route clinched in spite of the closure. This is my routine method of handling bridges closed for construction in the lower 48, and we don't go putting gaps in routes for those.

I'd also argue that just because a segment of a route is closed for construction doesn't mean it temporarily ceases existing. Rather than breaking the route in the HB, I would continue including it. It is then up to the individual traveler to determine whether to drive up to each end of the closure and call it good, or decide the route cannot be clinched until the closed section reopens and they need to return at a later date or postpone their trip accordingly.

The total closure length (not just one bridge) is probably at least a mile or two. I don't know exactly where the DOT has placed the barricades at each end, since satellite imagery in that area is poor and/or outdated enough that I can't see any barricades. The 2017 Milepost says the west closure point is at mile 35.8, 0.3 mile west of the first closed bridge, and about 14 miles west of where the state highway officially ends east of the Million Dollar Bridge.

Also, you can drive yourself only to the west closure point from Cordova. Getting around the closure means a jetboat ride to a waiting shuttle for the Million Dollar Bridge. I don't know where the shuttle starts relative to the bridge closures (the tour company's website doesn't specify where, and in any case that might need adjustment depending on what the Copper River is doing), but I doubt it will take you to the east closure point. Also, AK10Cor is isolated from the rest of the state highway system except via the state ferry to Cordova, so travelers can't drive to the east closure point on their own.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2018, 10:04:37 pm by oscar »

Offline oscar

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Re: usaak (Alaska State Highways)
« Reply #36 on: February 13, 2018, 11:09:59 pm »
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I think we've relaxed the unsigned routes rule in systems and jurisdictions outside North America where route signage practices are different than those in most of the U.S. and Canada. Right?
I can't speak with any knowledge here; I've paid much less attention to the goings-on outside North America.

As one data point, when Tim tried to apply his "no unsigned routes" rule to a British route system, the reaction from across the pond was "WTF?". There, si404 indicated he could live with keeping similar unsigned routes in the HB, and was generally in the "rare exceptions" (rather than "no exceptions") camp. In his usaak review, he was OK with my proposed inclusions of the two unsigned isolated segments of otherwise signed routes.

Offline oscar

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Re: usaak (Alaska State Highways)
« Reply #37 on: February 13, 2018, 11:30:05 pm »
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Another, for both segments, is to limit exceptions to jurisdictions that don't assign or post route numbers for most of their highways (in Alaska, there are hundreds of state-maintained highways, but only about two dozen have route numbers).
Maine is not 100% dissimilar. We have loads of unnumbered state & state-aid highways, without posted route numbers, only internal inventory route numbers similar to the six-digit codes AK DOT uses. If "ME1C" & "ME5B" have ordinary "touring route" numbers but are unsigned, should they be included? I say they should not.
Such an exception could be used to justify all kinds of inclusions, ones that might not be Good Things.

Are your hypothetical (?) ME1C and ME5B short spurs or loops from main routes? AK 10 (Cordova) and AK 7 (Petersburg) are both over 30 miles long. Also, even with Alaska's sparse route signage in rural areas, there are always route markers at junctions with other numbered state routes (Cordova and Petersburg have no such junctions, though other isolated numbered route segments have a little route signage), while I'm guessing your Maine routes have junctions but no route markers there.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2018, 11:57:38 pm by oscar »

Offline oscar

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Re: usaak (Alaska State Highways)
« Reply #38 on: February 16, 2018, 10:05:48 am »
Re the temporary/indefinite closure, what's the harm in plotting the route as-is for now, then adding the connecting segment in the future when it reopens? Anyone who had clinched it prior to the closure could then add in the resurrected segment and count the route as clinched again. The same will probably happen when IN 912 is reconnected.

Most of the disconnected segment still gets some tourist travel. They can't drive their own (or rental) vehicles, but a tour operator will ferry them across the river and then use a vehicle stationed east of the bridge closures to drive them the rest of the way to the Million Dollar Bridge near the route's east end.

And anyone with a boat can take a bike or perhaps a motorcycle across the river, to travel the disconnected segment without regard to the tour operator's itinerary or schedule.

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We could split the Cordova segment at the main channel of the Copper River, about two-thirds of the way between GraPitRd and GoatMtnTr.

I'm warming to this solution. It also addresses yakra's concerns about future travelers to Cordova being surprised by being unable to clinch the entire Copper River Highway. Having a split Childs Glacier segment (that glacier, and the Million Dollar Bridge, are the main tourist attractions east of the Copper River delta) will illustrate that there is a currently closed segment in the delta. That closed segment would be about two miles long (including two bridges known to be closed, and a few others in the delta east of those bridges). That would leave in the HB about a dozen miles of highway east of the delta, as well as about three dozen to the west.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2018, 11:20:23 am by oscar »

Offline yakra

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Re: usaak (Alaska State Highways)
« Reply #39 on: February 16, 2018, 12:52:16 pm »
The argument I found most compelling re the inclusion of unsigned routes was the low standard for signage in the first place, the very sparse signage, often >100 mi between assemblies.

How'bout I make a deal...  I'll decide I'm OK with the inclusion of AK7Pet & AK10Cor if AK10Cor gets split?

Offline oscar

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Re: usaak (Alaska State Highways)
« Reply #40 on: February 16, 2018, 02:02:35 pm »
The argument I found most compelling re the inclusion of unsigned routes was the low standard for signage in the first place, the very sparse signage, often >100 mi between assemblies.

How'bout I make a deal...  I'll decide I'm OK with the inclusion of AK7Pet & AK10Cor if AK10Cor gets split?

Deal!

Offline yakra

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Re: usaak (Alaska State Highways)
« Reply #41 on: February 16, 2018, 11:25:00 pm »
Should I do any further peer-review, or just assume that Si got everything?

Offline oscar

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Re: usaak (Alaska State Highways)
« Reply #42 on: February 16, 2018, 11:46:55 pm »
Only suggestion for additional review would be to look at AK 1 south of Soldotna (where Interstate A-3 ends) and AK 6. Si commented extensively on those segments, you might check how I responded to those comments.

Offline oscar

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Re: usaak (Alaska State Highways)
« Reply #43 on: February 18, 2018, 04:02:42 am »
Route split of AK 10 (Cordova), to move its mileage east of the Copper River delta bridge closures into a new AK 10 (Childs Glacier), is now in the HB.

Offline vdeane

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Re: usaak (Alaska State Highways)
« Reply #44 on: February 18, 2018, 07:05:01 pm »
On the flipside, consider the traveler who visits Cordova, and dutifully drives everything open and accessible, only to return home a few thousand miles away, check the HB, and find... SURPRISE! He Got Robbed! There's a section of the route listed in the HB that's not traveled, and not able to be traveled.
I would think he would look at the HB before his trip, and would thus know when he got there that he'd need to come back.  Ideally, Google Maps and 511 would both show the closure so he'd know in advance that attempting to clinch AK 10 is inadvisable at this time, but for some reason neither shows the closure (and it doesn't appear that Alaska 511 shows closures at all, leaving me very unimpressed with it).  In any case, since he would now look at the HB and see a split route, he'd think he clinched it unless he somehow knew better (and unless he follows Alaska roads I doubt it; for most jurisdictions, TM is the only source I have on where routes go), and he'd get a VERY nasty surprise when the bridge reopened.
Please note: All comments here represent my own personal opinion and do not reflect the official position of NYSDOT or its affiliates.