Sunday, December 07, 2008

Some Thoughts on US 96

US 96 is an anomaly: it violates US Highway number standards by running North-South instead of East-West. Designated in 1939, it begins at US 59 and US 84 near Tenaha, Texas. From there, it passes through Center, San Augustine, Jasper, Silsbee, Buna, Kirbyville and several other communities before intersecting US 69 & US 287 at Lumberton.

From Lumberton, 69, 96 and 287 run through Rosedale and Beaumont before ending together at Texas 87 in Port Arthur. I find myself asking "why?". Why do all three highways run together only to share the same end point? Does Texas receive more highway money for having 3 highways on the same alignment?

Yes, there are other highways that share alignments such as US 71 and US 59 between Mena, AR and Texarkana and the afore mentioned US 59 & US 84 between Tenaha & Timpson, Texas. I have no problem with that. But a 30 mile redundancy to the same terminus seems, well, redundant. Wouldn't it be better to end US 96 at Lumberton and end US 287 at US 69 in Woodville?

C'mon, TXDOT: either give me a logical explanation for the 69/96/287 multiplex or consider my suggestions of ending 96 at Lumberton and 287 at Woodville.

1 comment:

Taralyn said...

I don't see why it needs to exist at all. Surely some other state could actually use the number? The fact that it's such a severe numbering violation, by itself, should be enough reason to renumber it as something else.

Then again, it's Texas. Little makes sense about some of the highway numbering there, IMHO.