I wonder why do they creep

New England is unique as far as I’ve seen. We have a lot of intersections where 500 yards before the intersection another lane is added so you now have two lanes going through the light. Then 500 yards after the red light the lane is taken away and everyone has to merge. At first I thought it was just old intersections when the roads were built back in the 20’s and 30’. But I’ve seen at least 10 brand new intersections built this way.

It’s like a race…who can get ahead of the car next to them before the lane ends.

MikeInNH Nothing resembling unique here. I think they appeared in the early 1980s and are now everywhere. I can’t fault you for being unaware of this as Salem, OR and Loudon, NH are 3,121 miles apart. They are officially “overflow” lanes. Their intended purpose is to move more traffic per green light cycle through congested single lane intersections. In theory when the light turns green #1 left lane (pole position) retains their position. #1 right lane is allowed to merge behind them. Now #3 left lane retains their position. #2 right lane is allowed to merge behind them. Repeat as necessary. Riiiight! Of course the temporary right lane immediately became the get ahead of everyone you can at all cost lane! With the left lane becoming the defend your position at all cost lane! As usual government’s fantasy of trying to help people fails due to using mathematic logic and not factoring in predominately selfish human nature.

I’ve driven in many different parts of the country… grew up in NY…and I’ve seen extra lane at traffic light intersections here in New England. It is one of the WORSE traffic designs I’ve ever seen.

On many situations…I approach the intersection with a few cars in the left lane, but the right lane clear. I move into the right lane. Light turns green…and I’ll take it slow letting the cars that were at the light ahead of me go first… and more then once the car behind me is honking their horn and flashing their lights because I took away their opportunity of flooring it to pass everyone.

Mike, I can just see the big grin on your face when that happens…

Defending Boston drivers … a little … lol . I’ve rented a car there while on a business trip a few times. What I noticed straight away, some of the major roads there in Boston, especially in the area around Harvard, but even out in less congested places like Wellesley, the roads are only slightly removed from 1700’s wagon trails. I’m serious. If you haven’t been there before and planning to go, be prepared for some interesting ideas of what people call “major urban roads”! So I don’t think it is the Boston drivers are at fault so much as the Boston roads. The folks there are just trying to cope given what’s available to drive on.

The roads are very bad in many places. Many roads follow the old cow paths. But the drivers are just as bad. Sure the roads can cause some nasty driving…but that doesn’t mean they have to apply the same type of driving everywhere.

George, you are absolutely right. And you should have driven down Mass Ave BEFORE they redid it!! It only looks bombed out now, before it was much worse.

Any one else been driving down a parked up four-lane Boston street and have the car in front of you stop in the middle of a block, and get out of his car and go into the store we’re in front of? Is double parking legal?

Yup, had it happen. Nope, it isn’t legal. That’s Boston for you.

A few years ago I (as a pedestian) was almost hit by a car running a red light.

Large SUV, woman driving while talking on a cell phone, no seat belt that I could see, and two kids in the car, not belted in.

Another example: Tobin bridge in Boston, southbound, had a 15 MPH speed limit before the toll gates/booths were recently removed. The slowest I dared drive was 40 MPH, and even then cars were passing me on both sides doing at least 60.

Of course after the toll gates/booths were removed, the 15 MPH sign stayed up for a few months. They did eventually remove it.


Bill, you should be proud. You can rightfully claim to have gone 40mph on the Tobin and lived to tell about it. {:slight_smile:

I try not to drive in Boston. Too many massholes. Boston is a very walkable city. And the subway system works fine when it’s not snowing.

On one trip to Boston, leaving the airport toward the city during a really severe summer downpour, I came out of that tunnel and voila, a car was coming right toward me. In my lane. On the freeway!

I thought for certain somehow I’d gotten on the wrong side of the freeway b/c visibility was so poor, but it turned out I was on the correct side, it was the other guy that wasn’t. I just moved out of his way, he zoomed past in the lane I was in just a few seconds before.

Last October we visited the JFK museum and left Boston Friday evening, the weekend of Columbus Day on Monday. I couldn’t believe the outgoing westward traffic. It was bumper to bumper and 20+ mph for a hundred miles. I had no idea they took Columbus Day that seriously. In Minnesota its no big thing except the banks and post office aren’t open. I mean it was a mass exodus to the hills. Long lines at the restaurants at the toll rest areas. I think it was 10:00 or so before we ever got clear sailing and luckily found a motel. It just had never occurred to me that it would be holiday traffic.

There is probably a good reason why Boston has the highest car insurance rates in the US.

On one trip to Boston, leaving the airport toward the city during a really severe summer downpour, I came out of that tunnel and voila, a car was coming right toward me. In my lane. On the freeway!

Coming back from a business trip…one of the few times I drove and parked at the airport. I figured it wouldn’t be too bad since it was 10pm and there would be minimal traffic. I just got in the tunnel when traffic came to a stop. Accident in the tunnel. I sat there til almost 1am.

I used to drive in Boston regularly for years. I did a lot of business in Boston, and my son went to college in Boston. At first I hated it, but once I got used to it I just accepted the craziness. The road system does still drive me nuts, however. There’s no logic whatsoever and the signs are all screwed up. One media enterprise did a study a while back and found dozens of signs that were just plain incorrect. The company that put them up is supposed to correct them, but the media did a follow up study late last year and the signs are just as screwed up as they always were. There are signs with the wrong route numbers, route signs with arrows pointed in the wrong direction, and signs that point you west when they’re sending you east. It’s a genuine, documented mess.

And this pass 3 weeks it’s even worse. Boston’s very narrow roads and nearly 6’ of snow is NOT a good combination. Added to the fact their public transport system is very weakened. Some of the T lines aren’t even running…and some are running at a very limited schedule. Kids couldn’t get to school, people couldn’t get to work, people who did get to work couldn’t get home, or got home very late.

Yeah, it’s been a nightmare down there. I’m glad I don’t have to go there anymore.

One thing people from other regions may not have heard is that after the Superbowl storm (a huge one), the mayor made clearing the parade route for the parade a priority, diverting snow removal activities from residential streets that hadn’t been plowed in days. I’m going to guess that between that incident (which is unlikely to be forgotten by Bostonians) and the very serious problems with the “T”, we’re looking at a one-term mayor.

Hey, those 15mph signs were actual Massachusetts traffic signs. They probably kept them because they were so rare. I have never been in any state with such poor signage as Massachusetts. And lousy Highway engineering. Warn you of upcoming exits? What ever for? Oops, missed it. On the left, at that. I’m back there once or twice a year and I still get lost trying to get to my brother’s place. If I don’t turn at the right place I end up circling endlessly. I can even see his building, but can’t figure out how to get there. Grrr, I hate Massachusetts roads. The drivers aren’t great either, but I think it is just that they’ve been conditioned by the roads to be as erratic as possible. Despite the lousy roads and drivers Massachusetts has the fewest traffic fatalities per mile driven. Not many high speed wrecks?