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View Diary: Holy Crap, Tar Sands/Keystone XL Related To Skagit Bridge Collapse (80 comments)

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  •  But there was no direct replacement... (1+ / 0-)
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    Much of the older route, once known as Highway 99, is still there for the most part. Interstate 5 was built on a then-new route plan, which parallels the old highway but was engineered to be straighter and faster of course. In very few places does it actually supplant the old roadway from Everett to the border, and this bridge isn't one of them.

    I was just talking to my dad in Bellingham, and this was a mystery to him as well. He's 83, and has lived there for virtually his entire life, traveled up and down the Sound countless times, and well remembers the journey pre-Interstate. He can certainly recall that I-5 was not completed for much of its' path until the mid-60's.

    The detour route to the east of the broken bridge is the old Highway 99 route, albeit with a newer bridge only a few years old.

    And yeah, I know tarantulas don't really act like that at all, so no snarking, this is the internet damnit!

    by itzadryheat on Sun May 26, 2013 at 08:45:51 PM PDT

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    •  Gonna hafta find some old maps... (1+ / 0-)
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      To sort this question out. The Interstate System was pretty well planned out before the 1956 funding and authorizing legislation, in fact planning began before World War II. Perhaps Washington State figured the Interstate would follow that route, so they went ahead and built the bridge in 1955 on the assumption it would become part of planned I-5?

      •  My thoughts exactly. (0+ / 0-)

        Even up until the completion of I-5, traffic was generally light enough that the two lanes of 99 were sufficient for the density then.

        If you check out Google Maps, you'll see that the current route of I-5 went fully around the congestion of 99 through the Burlington/north Mount Vernon area. Naturally, we hominids being who we are, I-5 has its own congested corridor now, so we really need an all-new bypass to the bypass...

        What I do recall is that often completed stretches of I-5 were open to traffic, which after a few miles were diverted back to 99 while the more difficult stretches were completed. This was true pretty much all the way between the border and Seattle, so driving the distance took a while.

        And yeah, I know tarantulas don't really act like that at all, so no snarking, this is the internet damnit!

        by itzadryheat on Mon May 27, 2013 at 09:53:31 AM PDT

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