Skip to main content

Massachusetts Joins the Mile Post Club

On September 12, 2015 MassDOT posted an advertisement calling for bids on a contract (Project No. 608024) that will convert the state's interstates an other US and State Route expressways to the Geographic Reference Location or Milepost Exit Numbering System starting in 2016. The winning bidder is to be chosen on November 17, 2015. This ends a process started with the 2009 Massachusetts Supplement to the federal MUTCD, section 2E.31 stating: "Massachusetts will be changing all its interchange exit signs statewide to the reference location numbering system, with the entire state highway system to be converted to the new numbers over the next five to ten years." According to a MassDOT source, a chief sign engineer, however, when the state approached the FHWA about funding an ongoing conversion project, they insisted the only way Massachusetts could get 90% federal funding was if they did the project all at once, in what is termed a blanket contract. According to the same source, the project will start in the western part of the state and move east. Short routes like I-84 and I-385 probably being the first to receive the new numbers.

 

When MassDOT committed to the blanket contract for changing the numbers all at once, they already had two projects in the works to update the signage along I-90, the Massachusetts Turnpike, from the NY border to Exit 20 in Allston/Brighton. They decided to change the numbers along I-90 under these two contracts instead. The first project, that will change the numbers from the border east to I-290/I-395 in Auburn was let on August 18. The eastern project is to be advertised on October 31 and will probably be let in December (the remaining signs east of Allston-Brighton date from the extension of I-90 to East Boston in the 1990s and the numbers will be changed under the blanket contract).

 

I was able to get a copy of the signage plans for the western part of I-90 with the new exit numbers. Heading west to east, the first (currently 1) will become 3:


And the final exit under the contract, now 10, will become 90:

 
The most frequently jammed exit, at least westbound, at Sturbridge, now 9, will become 78:

This exit will be the only one to feature diagrammatic signing heading westbound:


US 20, that was formerly on the Exit 9 signage, will be relegated to a ground-level auxiliary sign:

All the I-90 signs on the Turnpike and Ramp will also feature the Mass Pike Logo:


And a Toll Banner at Turnpike Entrances:

For a complete listing of the new exit numbers for the Mass Pike, go to the Future I-90 Mass Pike Exit List. To see more signing plans, go to the I-90 Sign Plans Gallery.

With Massachusetts converting to milepost based numbering, and Connecticut starting to convert with a project currently going on along I-395 (for a gallery of the new signs already put up, visit this Flickr Site). This only leaves three New England states (NH, RI and VT) plus New York (and Interstates in Delaware) as the only remaining consecutive exit number states. With federal mandates calling for a switch, it probably will only be a short time before these states change as well.

In addition to my I-90 list, feel free also to check out my lists covering probable future exit numbers for all of Massachusetts's Interstates and State Route Expressways.

Comments

Bob Malme said…
Update:
On November 28, MassDOT placed an advertisement for bidders for the next Mass Pike signing project from Millbury to Boston (Current Exits 10A to 20). The winning bidder is to be announced on February 2, 2016. Work is to start later in the spring.
Bob Malme said…
An update to the I-90 signs gallery link. The gallery has moved to its own site:
http://www.gribblenation.net/mass21/i90photos.html

Popular posts from this blog

New River Gorge National River Area To Become A National Park

Great news for those that enjoy National Parks, West Virginia's New River Gorge Region, or West Virginia tourism.  Included within the Fiscal Year 2021 Omnibus Appropriations Bill signed by President Trump last night (December 27th) is the New River Gorge Park and Preserve Designation Act.   The act will designate the existing New River National River and over 72,000 acres of land within it as a National Park and Preserve. The New River Gorge Bridge will continue to be the centerpiece of the new New River Gorge National Park and Preserve. (Adam Prince, 2007) The river and surrounding land, which was added to the National Park System in 1978, will be our 63rd National Park.   The designation preserves over 7,000 acres as a National Park.  This area will not allow any hunting.  The remaining 65,000 acres of the existing park will be designated as a preserve allowing hunting and fishing. The main attractions to the New River Gorge - whitewater rafting, camping, hiking, mountain bikin

The Great PA 48 Clearance Sale

It's not often that any department of transportation sells land it purchased.  They are usually in the business of acquiring land for right-of-way.  But in 1982, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation did exactly that.  Offering to buyers land it purchased just 15 years earlier for the never-built Route 48 Expressway. Background: The sale was a result of the 1970s cash crunch the PennDOT experienced.  Many projects were cut back, shelved, or eliminated.  The 'New 48', or the North-South Parkway, which was touted for nearly 20 years as a connection from the industrial Mon Valley to the Turnpike and Monroeville was one of the casualties. In the mid-late 1960s, movement to construct the new highway began with targeting a two-mile stretch of highway from the Route 48 intersection at Lincoln Way in White Oak to US 30 in North Versailles.  The plan was then to continue the highway northwards to Monroeville.  Extension south across the Youghiogheny River and to PA 51 would

Legend of the Ridge Route; a history of crossing the mountains between the Los Angeles Basin and San Joaquin Valley from wagon trails to Interstates

Over the past two decades I've crossed the Interstate 5 corridor from Los Angeles north over the Sierra Pelona Mountains and Tehachapi Range to San Joaquin Valley what seems to be an immeasurable number of times.  While Interstate 5 from Castaic Junction to Grapevine via Tejon Pass today is known to most as "The Grapevine" it occupies a corridor which has been traversed by numerous historic highways.  The most notable of these highways is known as the "Ridge Route."  This article is dedicated to the Ridge Route and the various highways that preceded it.  The Ridge Route is a 44 mile section of highway which was completed in 1915.  The Ridge Route originally stretched from Castaic Junction north over Liebre Summit and Tejon Pass to the tiny community of Grapevine.  In spite of a roadway that once utilized nearly 700 curves the Ridge Route is generally considered far ahead of it's time and one of the first modern highways in California constructed for auto