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Why are Oklahoma's roads so crappy?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Grendel, Aug 3, 2014.

  1. Grendel

    Grendel Sharpshooter

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    Serious question here.

    I just got back from a 2,500 mile road trip to see my brother in Fayetteville, North Carolina, with a short day trip down to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

    We drove I-40 most of the way and made a few side trips along the way. By far, the worst section of I-40 was in Oklahoma. Coming back, as soon as we crossed the boarder, I could tell that we were in Oklahoma just by the quality of the road. There was a constant ba-dump, ba-dump, ba-dump as we drove across the seams of the concrete, and a somewhat wavy feel to the road in general and pot holes every few hundred yards.

    I do a lot of driving in Oklahoma. HWYs 69 and 412 to and from work every day, HWY 51 to Stillwater and the Turner Turnpike down to OKC and Edmond about once a month. And it seems that all of the roads in Oklahoma are in far worse shape than any of the roads that I drove on in Arkansas, Tennessee, North and South Carolina recently. The bridges that I cross on a daily basis here in Oklahoma are a patchwork quilt of concrete and asphalt.

    So, what's the deal? Do we not have properly trained or experienced road building and maintenance crews? Do we just cheap out on the budget so we can't get quality materials? Or is there some kind of corruption and graft going on that the money we do spend isn't actually getting spent on the roads themselves?
     
  2. excat_56

    excat_56 Sharpshooter

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    We deal with horrible weather conditions to both extremes for road construction (construction as is what makes up the road). They can change the properties of the asphalt to deal with particular weather by adding more or less oils and other stuff, for a lot of cold freezing conditions, or a lot of hot conditions, etc, but we get so much of both, there's not a prime recipe for longevity of asphalt in Oklahoma. It's hard for asphalt that is designed to expand a lot in the heat without cracking to hold up contracted under long freezing conditions. This is how I had it explained to me when I was talking with a civil/road planner/engineer one day.
     
  3. Spata

    Spata Sharpshooter

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    What if we built roads with cement/concrete?
     
  4. Rod Snell

    Rod Snell Sharpshooter

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    And from what I've seen of the construction done on HWY 62 in SW OK, OK allows pavement to be put on a base that would sink into the mud in TN the first spring thaw, and relies on relatively dry and warm conditions (and hope) to get it to last 5 years. I watched the section west of the Red being paved when the base was so wet the trucks were pushing bow waves in the SAND.

    Pouring concrete on a substandard base would be worse then asphalt. Germany built the autobahns on a 15" rock base, the US built the interstates on half that, and OK puts asphalt on 4" of sand sometimes.
     
  5. Grendel

    Grendel Sharpshooter

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    And Arkansas doesn't get the extreme heat and cold that we do? Moreover, those extreme temps change right at the boarder?
     
  6. RidgeHunter

    RidgeHunter Sharpshooter

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    Yeah, this makes no sense. A good number of states get worse weather conditions than us. Look at the upper midwest. It gets triple digits there just like it does here and it gets 30-50 degrees colder every winter than we EVER see here in Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Michigan, etc . Hell, even our neighbor to the north of Kansas gets much worse temp fluctuations than us and their roads are much better.

    OP, it's a riddle that will never be answered. Like "Why is the old lady in a bad mood?" or "How big is Cher's penis?" We'll never know.

    I think it's part of our clannish attitude. Travelers hit the state line, bite their tongue on a bump, and decide to keep on going. I drive a shitton for work also, and I've driven thousands upon thousands of miles in other states in the lower 48 and I've never, ever, ever seen roads that approach the shitpaths we drive on in OK. It's part of our unique charm.

    The turnpikes really make me smile. Paid roads. Remember the Cimmaron before the last patchjob paveover? I was working in Ponca communting fom Tulsa for a while about 6 years ago. Sore red teats on a fat boar hog, that was an awful drive. 412 outside Chouteau is a real winner, too. About 8 years ago I actually though I had a flat there. Then we have Rollercaoster Bridge on the east section of the Creek. WOO CHITLINS HANG ON, WE'S A DRIVIN' THE SUPERHIGHWAY TO GRANDMAS HOUSE!

    http://www.newson6.com/story/10708681/why-is-a-creek-turnpike-bridge-like-a-roller-coaster
     
  7. 264Magnum

    264Magnum Sharpshooter

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    This is ridiculous. Every state in this part of the country has the same weather we do, and they all have perfectly fine roads.
     
  8. Lakenut

    Lakenut Sharpshooter

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    We have bad roads yet the highest paid part time lawmakers (state) in the country.
     
  9. RidgeHunter

    RidgeHunter Sharpshooter

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    I've always had a tin-hatter conspiracy that the OTA is as corrupt as the trash haulers in New Jersey in the early 70s. Some dogs are getting fed under the table.
     
  10. JD8

    JD8 Sharpshooter

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    I think you answered your own question.
     

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