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Is the M42 our worst motorway?
Yes 22%  22%  [ 9 ]
No 78%  78%  [ 32 ]
Total votes : 41
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 Post subject: M42 - Britain's worst motorway!
PostPosted: Sun Mar 19, 2006 22:28 
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Before anyone points out things like the M898 or the Walton Summit Motorway I'm not looking for the worst design, I'm looking for the most unsuitable.

The M42 is abysmal for many many reasons:

1. Is 14 miles too short
2. Is D2 on all those hills past Tamworth causing huuuuuuge queues behind truck racing.
3. That southbound comedy merge into the M6 Toll
4. That insane northbound exit from the M6 Toll - lane 2 just splits down the middle which is fun at high speed
5. The worst blend of commuter traffic, long distance AND events traffic anywhere - bad enough when the NEC isn't busy, avoid-at-all-costs when it is
6. They spent zillions on Active Traffic Management without actually letting us use the hard shoulder - see point 5
7. They spent zillions on ATM but didn't replace the hideously worn concrete surface
8. A TOTSO with the M40
9. Hopwood Park MSA. Icky.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2006 00:13 
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There's a good reason for the TOTSO.

Of course, most of the problems with the M42 are simply to do with its age and the desperate penny-pinching that went on at that time.

It's also missing the northern spur to the M5, which would be an improvement!

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2006 00:21 
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Steven wrote:
It's also missing the northern spur to the M5, which would be an improvement!


I'm confused. Do you really mean the M5, or did you mean the extension to the M1?

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9. Hopwood Park MSA. Icky.


By no means the worst MSA on the network. I would choose to stop there rather than some of the others.

Simon

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2006 00:27 
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M4Simon wrote:
Steven wrote:
It's also missing the northern spur to the M5, which would be an improvement!


I'm confused. Do you really mean the M5, or did you mean the extension to the M1?


Yes, I really mean the M5.

The "M42 Northern Turn" was junked in the late 1970s, which is why the northern movements at the present M5 J4a opened later than the southern movements.

It would have gone from somewhere just east of J1 (which would not have existed in the original plans) up to just north of M5 J4, with a link to that junction.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2006 01:14 
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With you now.

Is the change in location of the northern link to the M5 that detrimental to the M42 motorway?

Simon

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2006 01:15 
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M4Simon wrote:
With you now.

Is the change in location of the northern link to the M5 that detrimental to the M42 motorway?


Not really - but it's another example of cost saving that went on during the construction process. Mind you, it would make the journey that way around Birmingham a bit shorter!

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2006 16:33 
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I reckon that the section between the M5 and M40 isn't too bad, Hopwood Park services are nowhere near the worst I've been to, and a TOTSO isn't the end of the world. But the rest of the M42 (and A42!) makes it, without doubt IMO, the worst UK motorway I've travelled on. I haven't been on it since the ATM or the M6 Toll were introduced, but it was bad enough without them. God knows what it must be like by now.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2006 17:19 
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Just out of curiosity, did they use ATM / hard shoulder running during Crufts? If not, why not? I heard that the queues were just as bad as ever...

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2006 18:16 
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I'd say it bad- but not the wost.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2006 18:20 
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I don't want to take it off topic, but those of you saying it's not the worst - which motorway would you say is the worst?


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2006 18:23 
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mittfh wrote:
Just out of curiosity, did they use ATM / hard shoulder running during Crufts? If not, why not? I heard that the queues were just as bad as ever...
Nose to tail presumably :wink:

I didn't think the full implementation of ATM was due to come in until 2007 or 2008?

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 Post subject: Re: M42 - Britain's worst motorway!
PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2006 18:33 
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Roadtripper_Ian wrote:
3. That southbound comedy merge into the M6 Toll
4. That insane northbound exit from the M6 Toll - lane 2 just splits down the middle which is fun at high speed


I agree with you on these two. I've had to use this merge a couple of times over the past couple of years and hated it every time. I'd love to know what the accident rate is here because every time I've used it, I've always had to watch out for people quickly changing lanes causing everyone around them to swerve or brake sharply.


Quote:
7. They spent zillions on ATM but didn't replace the hideously worn concrete surface


I don't mind concrete surfaces, but the one on the M42 really is in need of replacing, it's awful.

Quote:
I'd say it bad- but not the wost.


Agreed. I'm not a fan of the M42. Thankfully I hardly ever use it - only really for the NEC when something decent is there. My own nomination for the worst motorway wolud either have to be the M8 (formation driving or what? Stay in the middle lane and hope you remain on the motorway!) or most of the M60 (particularly the Southern and Western half).


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 Post subject: M42-britains worst motorway!
PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 21:03 
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It is bad. But it isn't as bad as some of the others (e.g. M271 and the M49)


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 21:43 
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The M271 is Britain's worst Motorway. Hell! It's a dreadful road.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Apr 06, 2006 11:15 
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Steven wrote:
M4Simon wrote:
With you now.

Is the change in location of the northern link to the M5 that detrimental to the M42 motorway?


Not really - but it's another example of cost saving that went on during the construction process. Mind you, it would make the journey that way around Birmingham a bit shorter!


Not wishing to sound like one of the beard and sandals brigade, but the environmental impact of such a route would be horrendous - it would just about destroy the Lickey Hills.


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 Post subject: Re: M42-britains worst motorway!
PostPosted: Thu Apr 06, 2006 16:12 
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Dave908 wrote:
It is bad. But it isn't as bad as some of the others (e.g. M271 and the M49)


The M271 is bad.

My own contenders would have to be the M60 and the M8. The M60 in my opinion is very poorly designed and the TOTSO when you get to the M66 junction is a joke. It was much easier to understand in my opinion when it was M62/M63/M66. Turning three motorways into one has just caused confusion.

As for the M8....where do I start?! In short, 'Formation Driving' at it's scariest and unless you stick somewhere in the middle of the road, you'll end up pulling off somewhere using the inside or outside lane(s)! You need to know where you are going before using this motorway...!


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