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mobilene

National Road Between New Market And Frederick Md.

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So I'm scrolling along Google's aerial maps of the NR in MD tonight, just for fun, and I'm seeing a lot of stuff I don't recognize. First, I found a roundabout in Lisbon at MD 144 and MD 94. But the biggie appears to be between New Market and Frederick, where it looks like the road has been or is being four-laned. Has it always been that way or is this new? The Street View of the area shows two-lane highway here.

 

jim

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The roundabout in Lisbon seems to be pretty new. I saw it for the first time in April and the work looks pretty fresh. I'd attach a picture if I hadn't used up my quota.

 

MD 144 becomes 4 lane at the place where it crosses I-70 just east of Bartonsville, and this has been the case for as long as I can remember. One might say 6-lane, since there is an old alignment that runs parallel to this almost up to the Monocacy River, where it would have taken a jag to the north across the current alignments (there are 2 others at this point) to become Dr. Baxter Rd. and cross the river over the Jug Bridge. The other alignment took the 2nd bridge over the Monocacy, which is still standing, though closed to traffic. During the colder months, one can walk on this bridge and get a glimpse through the leafless trees of what foundations remain of the Jug Bridge on the western bank.

Edited by Mark G Simon

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I guess that's what happens when I'm comparing aerial maps to my swiss-cheese memory. I don't remember that stretch being four lanes, and I certainly don't remember the old alignment leading to the Monocacy.

 

But hey, that's probably the only roundabout on the NR!

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I find the area west of the Jug Bridge fascinating because there are three separate alignments of the road lying side by side. There's the old alignment, on which can be found the original toll house for the Jug Bridge, which is being lived in (behind "Do Not Trespass" signs)

 

Tollhouse at the Jug Bridge, Frederick Maryland

 

and other old houses such as this one:

 

 

House west of Jug Bridge, Frederick MD

 

This quickly peters out into the parking lot of a mobile home dealer. Then there's the 2nd alignment, attached to the unused 2nd bridge, which is now used as a parking lot for a park and ride service, and then the present alignment.

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Sorry, I was misleading. The 2nd alignment west of the bridge is the parking lot. The 2nd bridge is covered with "No Trespassing" signs, but you can walk on it if you're daring. There are plants growing through the cracks in the concrete and there's graffiti and stuff. I believe what happened was a bus crashed on or into the bridge, or crashed into the railing or something. The accident was so bad that the structure was declared unstable and unsafe to drive over. So they built yet another bridge, and for some reason kept the second bridge standing.

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If memory serves, when I moved to Frederick in 1979, the two-lane alignment, now called Rt. 144, was the Interstate. It was not only two-lanes but also had grade level on-off access from surrounding roads. There is a seafood restaurant along this section of road (Jug Bridge) that's been a local favorite for years.

 

Christopher Busta-Peck shot some photos of the old Jug Bridge a few years ago.

 

~ Steve

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