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Showing posts from 2019

Arizona State Route 143 the Hohokam Expressway

This past week I fly above Arizona State Route 143 heading eastbound out of Sky Harbor International Airport.  AZ 143 is a freeway I frequented while living in the Phoenix area between 2001 to 2013.


AZ 143 is a short approximately 4 mile Freeway from 48th Street/Interstate 10 north over the Salt River to AZ 202/McDowell Road.  AZ 143 serves essentially as a connector freeway between I-10, AZ 202 and the east entrance of Sky Harbor International Airport.  AZ 143 is known as the Hohokam Expressway.

The legislative history of AZ 143 dates back to the late 1950s when the route was planned as a connector to the planned freeways in Phoenix.  AZ 143 opened to traffic in 1978 as a parkway which essentially the 40th Street entrance to Sky Harbor which was subsequently dismantled to make way for present terminal complex.  During the 1990s AZ 143 was converted to a freeway grade and recently had the interchange with AZ 202 replaced as of 2011.

AZ 143 in present configuration has only a partial …

NCDOT's New Transportation Plan and Future Interstate Construction

On January 10, NCDOT released its Draft 2020-2029 State Transportation Improvement Program (or STIP) to public comment. The document provides a list of funded transportation projects for the state over the next 10 years.
The document has both good and bad news for supporters of the many future Interstate routes the state plans to build over the next decade or two. The document lists each project by NCDOT Division, the estimated cost (and funding source) for each, and a timetable for Right-of-Way purchase and project construction. The information is presented in tables such as the one below (this for the I-74 section of the Winston-Salem Northern Beltway):

This post will summarize what the Draft STIP has revealed for new Interstate projects for the next 10 years. For current project information, feel free to check out my I-73/I-74 in North Carolina and Future North Carolina Interstate sites.

The major project to start in 2019 is the US 70 Havelock Bypass, a $221 million highway that wil…

Chicago Weekend Day 1

In October, my wife and I celebrated our seventh wedding anniversary by spending a weekend in Chicago. Chicago is her favorite city, and I have never really been there.  (I have been in Lake Forest a few times for work but never really gotten into the city limits let alone downtown and The Loop.)

We spent close to a day and a half in Chicago before heading to South Bend for the Notre Dame / University of Pittsburgh game.  So with not as much time and wanting to see a lot what do you do?  If you are us, you want to experience and enjoy as much as you can. Well, one of the items that helped us was the Chicago City Pass - it allowed us to visit a number of attractions and at a pretty good price.  We also scheduled two unique tours, and I'll get into those later.
The City Pass allows you to visit five Chicago attractions at a set price.  You also have nine days to use the pass.  The pass includes the Shedd Aquarium, Field Museum of Natural History, and the Chicago Skydeck.  Then yo…

"The Stack" (I-17/US 60/I-10 Interchange in Phoenix)

Circumstance had me flying by one of the more infamous road features in Arizona; "The Stack" interchange for I-17, US 60 and I-10.


The Stack is a four-level interchange west of downtown Phoenix which was one of the last parts of I-10 to open in Arizona in 1990.  Previous to the completion of the Deck Park Tunnel and Stack the route of I-10 through downtown Phoenix was a contentious issue.  The section of I-10 through downtown Phoenix was known as the Papago Freeway.  The original plans for I-10 in downtown Phoenix called for an elevated structure that was largely despised locally.  During the 1970s local opposition to the elevated Papago Freeway was spurred by campaigns by the Arizona Republic which led to a bill that defeated the construction of the elevated freeway through downtown Phoenix.  In 1983 plans for the Deck Park Tunnel was approved which as stated above opened in 1990 with the Stack interchange.

Arizonaroads.com has a stub article which shows pamphlet informatio…

Florida Friday; Enterprise, Volusia County

Back in 2015 I visited Enterprise off the shore of Lake Monroe east of Interstate 4 in Volusia County.


Enterprise is now a quasi-ghost town which is located at what was a fortunate location along the St. Johns River watershed via Lake Monroe.  Enterprise was founded by approximately 20 settlers during 1841 near the end of the Second Seminole War.  Enterprise was meant to replace the major port of Palatka which was burned northward on the St. Johns River during the beginning of the Second Seminole War in 1835.  Enterprise was founded on land which was once part of Fort Kingsbury and would eventually become a major port along the St. Johns River.

Enterprise became the third County Seat of Mosquito County in 1843 due to it being one of the larger towns in Central Florida.  In 1844 Mosquito County split into Orange County and St. Lucia County which led to Enterprise being removed as the County Seat in 1845.  By 1854 Enterprise had a large 50 room hotel called the "Brock House" a…

National Park Wednesday; Saguaro National Park and Cactus Forest Drive

Back in 2012 I visited the Rincon Mountain District of Saguaro National Park located in the Rincon Mountains east of Tucson in Pima County, Arizona.  My goal for the trip was to drive Cactus Forest Drive and visit the location of the Loma Verde Mine.


Saguaro National Park was legislatively created by Congress out of the land that was Saguaro National Monument in 1994.  Saguaro National Park consists of two districts; the Rincon Mountain District in the Rincon Mountains east of Tucson and the Tucson Mountain District west of the city.  Saguaro National Monument originally consisted of land that is now part of the Rincon Mountain District, the Monument was declared in 1933.  Saguaro National Monument was expanded in 1961 when the Tucson Mountain District was added.  Additional land was added in 1976 and when Tucson National Monument was expanded to a National Park in 1994.

The primary attraction to Saguaro National Monument is the namesake Saguaro Cactus.  Originally the Rincon Mountai…