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Author Topic: Cincinnati: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge  (Read 5802 times)

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Offline natininja

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #990 on: December 12, 2012, 12:59:58 PM »
Completely incompetent live blog of the B$B meeting with LaHood, Kasich, and Beshear:

http://news.cincinnati.com/article/20121212/biz01/121212002

At least I think it is still going on, it hasn't been updated for about half an hour.
« Last Edit: December 12, 2012, 01:02:04 PM by natininja »

Offline unusualfire

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #991 on: December 12, 2012, 02:14:32 PM »
Tolls are coming to the bridge.

Offline natininja

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #992 on: December 12, 2012, 05:36:52 PM »
Everyone knew/knows that but the NKY Tea Party.

Offline unusualfire

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #993 on: December 13, 2012, 01:59:55 AM »
So construction will start in 2014 and take 2-3 years to build.

http://www.wcpo.com/dpp/news/tolls-may-be-used-to-fund-brent-spence-bridge-project

Offline Living in Gin

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #994 on: December 13, 2012, 02:17:23 AM »
Everyone knew/knows that but the NKY Tea Party.

Gotta love that ideological consistency. They're all for libertarian principles, except when they aren't.
« Last Edit: December 13, 2012, 02:17:46 AM by Living in Gin »

Offline jmecklenborg

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #995 on: December 13, 2012, 06:46:31 AM »
"Block our Bridge", or whatever it's called, running ads all over talk radio and their goons are making appearances.  Their main argument seems to be that not doing their plan will take 5 more years and will cost $500 million more because "every month we wait costs $8 million more".  No explanation for that math. 

Offline Ram23

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #996 on: December 13, 2012, 07:04:53 AM »
"Block our Bridge", or whatever it's called, running ads all over talk radio and their goons are making appearances.  Their main argument seems to be that not doing their plan will take 5 more years and will cost $500 million more because "every month we wait costs $8 million more".  No explanation for that math. 

Financing and inflation cause a project to get more expensive the longer you wait to build it, but who knows where the $8 million number comes from, it seems too high.  I really wish someone would propose to toll the current interstate bridges, charge double rates during rush hour, and maybe slow the speed limit to 35 and enforce it.  Iíd imagine traffic would let up quite a bit.

Although the only concern I have with tolls is that we may be underestimating the cheapness of Cincinnatians.  Iíd bet a lot of people will be more willing to sit in traffic and clog local roads for hours than pay $3, even though the extra time/gas ends up being worth way more.

Offline jmecklenborg

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #997 on: December 13, 2012, 07:31:04 AM »
Inflation is not a real cost because hardly funding has been allocated so far, and neither is financing because no bonds have been sold.  Certainly, if it is going to be a toll bridge, repayment of bonds is dependent on that revenue and if collection of tolls is delayed after the bonds have been sold due to construction problems then yes the interest costs increase, at least that's how household budgets work.  At this scale there might be a different set of rules. 

No word yet on what happens to tolls after the construction bonds are paid off circa 2050.  No doubt some toll revenue will still be collected for maintenance, but does the company simply get to pocket whatever they can get?  That's the real fear here.  OR, if the company goes bankrupt after driving plummets when gas hits $10/gallon, what happens to the bridge?  Who would buy the bridge if it is foreclosed on?


Offline Quimbob

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #998 on: December 13, 2012, 07:05:53 PM »
PhaseBuch page
"We Are Against Brent Spence Tolls"
Most arguments are, "We already paid gas taxes" & "DANGER DANGER"
https://www.facebook.com/pages/We-Are-Against-Brent-Spence-Tolls/558471657502113

Offline natininja

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #999 on: December 14, 2012, 02:22:50 PM »
Quote
We Are Against Brent Spence Tolls shared a link.
Wednesday
Why the rush for the bridge? Why do they want to add another tax on us?

First I have heard any of the "double tax" anti-toll crowd actually question the dogmatic urgent need for the bridge. I hope they successfully slow the B$B down as much as they have the streetcar.

Anyone else wondering why COAST is mum on this issue?
« Last Edit: December 14, 2012, 02:28:43 PM by natininja »

Offline Living in Gin

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #1000 on: December 14, 2012, 03:15:11 PM »
Despite their name, COAST has never been an anti-tax, anti-spending group. They're an anti-city, pro-sprawl group.

Offline Quimbob

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #1001 on: December 14, 2012, 04:49:30 PM »
Heck, COA T has told streetcar supporters to put an anti B$B initiative on the ballot & they'd support it.
Of course, right now they are busy carrying on about how awful the semi-privatization of parking is.
*^@$% screwballs.....
A psychological review of those clowns would be hilarious.
But I believe this FB thing has more to do with NKY Tease.

Offline natininja

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #1002 on: December 14, 2012, 06:20:29 PM »
But I believe this FB thing has more to do with NKY Tease.
Yeah, I was just lumping all the pseudo-fiscal-hawks together.
« Last Edit: December 14, 2012, 06:21:01 PM by natininja »

Offline unusualfire

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #1003 on: December 14, 2012, 07:04:52 PM »
How can this bridge cost 2.5 billion and only go one mile yet the toll pike in northern Ohio goes 200+ miles and costs the same?

Offline j3shafer

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #1004 on: December 14, 2012, 07:08:16 PM »
Does anyone know what the effects of adding toll collection areas at either end of the bridge would have on the design, layout, location of the bridge?

Offline jmecklenborg

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #1005 on: December 16, 2012, 09:57:28 PM »
For the last time people there aren't going to be toll booths.  They're going to use red light cameras to photograph license plates. 

Offline dmerkow

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #1006 on: December 16, 2012, 10:45:23 PM »
If there are tolls, I want trolls to collect the tolls.

Offline Living in Gin

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #1007 on: December 16, 2012, 10:48:06 PM »
How can this bridge cost 2.5 billion and only go one mile yet the toll pike in northern Ohio goes 200+ miles and costs the same?

Um, because the former is a long-span double-deck bridge over a major river in a dense urban area, while the latter is a turnpike through mostly flat cornfields?
« Last Edit: December 16, 2012, 10:48:45 PM by Living in Gin »

Offline jmecklenborg

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #1008 on: December 17, 2012, 08:42:25 AM »
What's interesting is in the same way people can only picture old-timey streetcars even though the new streetcars are much different, everyone seems to only be picturing traditional toll plazas. 

>2.5 billion and only go one mile

The whole project area is about 5 miles, from Kyles Lane to Western Hills Viaduct. 

Offline natininja

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #1009 on: December 17, 2012, 09:45:46 AM »
Maybe if I knew of a precedent for that, I would be less skeptical. I know all about EZ-Pass, but not this camera stuff, which I raised the possibility that it could be difficult with out-of-state plates. The Enquirer said something to back this suspicion up:

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Toll booths would not be used on the Brent Spence. New bridges being built in Louisville and Southern Indiana Ė a project viewed as a model for the Brent Spence Ė will use all-electronic tolling. It relies on overhead sensors to read in-vehicle transponders and does not require a break in speed.

Some traditional tolling authorities are exploring eliminating toll-basket mechanisms and lift gates. By the time the Brent Spence project is done, there might not be a toll booth left in the nation; manufacturing of toll-basket mechanisms has ceased.

But the tolling industry is struggling with how to catch drivers who donít pay, particularly out-of-area violators. There are no laws forcing drivers to purchase toll transponders, and no official nationwide agreement exists between departments of motor vehicles and the nationís 110 tolling agencies to identify offenders. Tracking down violators and mailing multiple invoices ultimately could cost the states and tolling authorities more than the original toll.

I know enough about toll tech to know that the middle paragraph there is rather silly, especially regarding the lift gates which hardly exist at all anymore. But I don't know of any proof of concept for quick and easy charging based on license plates. "Tracking down violators and mailing multiple invoices ultimately could cost the states and tolling authorities more than the original toll" -- this seems likely to be a problem with the camera charging.

Offline jmecklenborg

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #1010 on: December 17, 2012, 10:44:56 AM »
Tolling has always struggled with out-of-state gate crashers.  My dad blew through the Chicago Skyway booths when I was a kid, it was impressive. 

So with traditional plazas people get away without paying and with the new method some people will slip through.  Fact is the overwhelming majority of vehicles are from Kentucky and Ohio and so will pay.  Further, they will avoid paying anyone to work at toll booths because there won't be any.  Hard to imagine that billing costs by mail will exceed the cost of staffing a toll plaza 24 hours per day, although some knuckleheads will inevitably send cash in the mail. 

Offline natininja

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #1011 on: December 17, 2012, 11:15:30 AM »
If I understand the camera system you describe, people will "slip through" by design, just their license plate will be captured on camera. But the logistics of the camera recognizing every possible plate, regardless of what sort of decoration might be on or around the plate, and discerning which state's license plate database to access in order to get address information for whom to send a bill to, and then physically mailing those bills...it seems technologically impossible without a lot of human labor, including database searches, possibly form completion, and envelope stuffing, which may very well incur more labor costs than operating booths.

What might work is a system like they have in, I think, Austria, where you have to get a sticker at a convenience store before crossing the bridge. (In Austria the stickers are actually for driving on a stretch of highway. Similar to the county park stickers we have.) Have signs up making this clear miles beforehand. Then have cameras scan windshields for the stickers. If there's no sticker, then the process begins of figuring out who to send a bill in the mail to. But in this case that process only occurs for people who are disobeying the system, greatly reducing the number of license plates needing to be checked. But something like this seems cumbersome, too. Though it would be flexible, and mostly burdensome for people who are one-time/rare users of the bridge. The appeal is that stickers can be as temporary or permanent as necessary, whereas with a transponder system you would not be giving someone on a family vacation from FL to MI a transponder.
« Last Edit: December 17, 2012, 11:18:20 AM by natininja »

Offline jmecklenborg

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #1012 on: December 17, 2012, 11:44:44 AM »
Make it an annual bill and add it to plate renewal.  Done. 

Offline ryanlammi

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #1013 on: December 17, 2012, 11:44:46 AM »
I can't imagine trying to inform people in the region about a camera that will send you a bill later, let alone informing the people travelling from out of the region that they will get a $2 toll charge in the mail that they then have to mail back. This seems like a terrible idea to me. Traditional toll booths will be much easier for people to grasp.

People still write in to the Enquirer and talk about how dangerous the streetcars will be because you board in the middle of the street, failing to realize that technology/best practices have changed since the 1940s. Putting in a simple camera toll system would be a nightmare. I could easily see them reverting back to tolls after implementing the cameras because of the PR disaster ensuing. Is there any city in the country that actually uses these cameras?

Offline jmecklenborg

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #1014 on: December 17, 2012, 11:45:50 AM »
Yeah, the red light cameas are all over the place.

Offline ryanlammi

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #1015 on: December 17, 2012, 11:51:47 AM »
^Yeah, and COAST has successfully gotten rid of plenty of these systems in Ohio. Also, they only take pictures a couple times a day. They aren't taking thousands of pictures and then processing them daily. And you really think Joe from Covington will put away money every day so that he can remember to save the money for an annual bridge crossing fee? People can grasp paying $2/day, but if you work across the river from where you live, you would have a yearly $500 bill to pay (assuming about 2-3 dollars per day round trip) just in time for Christmas shopping. That would cause more of an outrage than the daily tolls. At least most people can understand that.

Offline natininja

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #1016 on: December 17, 2012, 01:33:19 PM »
Also, they only take pictures a couple times a day. They aren't taking thousands of pictures and then processing them daily.

Exaaaaactly.

Quote
And you really think Joe from Covington will put away money every day so that he can remember to save the money for an annual bridge crossing fee? People can grasp paying $2/day, but if you work across the river from where you live, you would have a yearly $500 bill to pay (assuming about 2-3 dollars per day round trip) just in time for Christmas shopping. That would cause more of an outrage than the daily tolls. At least most people can understand that.

It could still work with a prepaid subscription like EZ-Pass. Apply for the program, get charged every time your account goes below X, get discounted use of the bridge.

Still, I don't think the camera thing works. No one has convinced me otherwise. So far as I can tell, my sticker idea is the only somewhat feasible one for avoiding toll booths (which could be manned by machines like parking lot exits, avoiding labor costs). Cameras still catch violators, but that's not thousands of vehicles per day.

Offline unusualfire

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #1017 on: December 17, 2012, 01:42:25 PM »
They must be avoiding fee's to plates and licenses for future projects. Im not sure about how additional sales tax can happen in Ky since every county has the same sales tax.

Offline jjakucyk

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #1018 on: December 17, 2012, 02:56:05 PM »
You guys sound like the COAST troglodytes.  "It won't work here." "I don't understand it, ergo it's worthless." "Just because it works in London and Texas doesn't mean anything." "Forget facts, it just doesn't feel right so it's bad." "It will be massively difficult to implement." "Hurr durr go USA!"  Give me a break! 
« Last Edit: December 17, 2012, 02:57:18 PM by jjakucyk »

Offline jmecklenborg

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Re: Ohio River: Interstate 71 and 75 Brent Spence Bridge
« Reply #1019 on: December 17, 2012, 03:05:10 PM »
I'm going to send an email to someone working on the project and hopefully they can clarify how this is going to work, because I've definitely heard them say that this is the plan. 

Again, there will be computers recognizing text on licesnse plates -- Facebook has pretty damn good facial recognition software and text is a piece of cake compared to that.  Plus, digital cameras have gotten much better, meaning they don't have to do the flash anymore like with the early red light cameras.

My guess is that there will be an array of cameras placed over a 1,000+ ft. distance that will ensure no plate gets missed in bumper-to-bumper traffic.  The program might need two matches confirmed by two different cameras cameras in order to ensure a correct reading of the plate.   Multiple appearances of the same plate obviously will be cancelled out in billing. 

« Last Edit: December 17, 2012, 03:05:30 PM by jmecklenborg »