How was the traffic from Portland to Camden?
Think maybe you meant to include this as part of another post, but it popped up as a separate, free-standing question. Doesn't mean much by itself unless you can also identify a specific time period -- traffic along that corridor can vary greatly from season-to-season and even from one day of the week to another......
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I was just wondering about traffic from Portland to Camden. I don't know anything about the area.
Generally traffic on I-295 north of Portland is not very heavy. You have to leave the interstate at Brunswick to get to Camden. Traffic on highway 1 hits a huge bottleneck in Wiscasset from July through September, partly because of a very popular lobster stand in Wiscasset. Highway 1 goes right through the village of Camden and is often at a standstill and crawl in Camden itself in those months. In March and April and May there's hardly any traffic anywhere in Maine.
As Bonniemaev suggests, I-295 is a four-lane divided Interstate highway. Traffic in the immediate vicinity of Portland can get heavy ( by Maine standards) during morning and evening rush hour -- but is generally characterized by a general 5-10 mph slowdown in traffic -- but certainly not stop-and-go.... at least under normal circumstances. The Maine Department of Transportation announced yesterday that it will be working on bridge repairs and improvements on I-295 in South Portland and Portland throughout the summer, with traffic reduced to one-lane northbound at times -- could produce some dramatic slowdowns and even some stop and go at times.
Once you hit US 1 in Brunswick (or take I-295 to Topsham and the Coastal Connector to US Rt 1) you'll hit a "mixed bag" -- Rt 1 between Brunswick and Bath is another four-lane (two each way) divided highway that generally moves along fairly well. East of Bath, it becomes a two-lane (one each way) major highway. But, because as well as being the through-route for most traffic flow along the coast, it also serves as "Main Street" in some local communities, traffic flow gets interrupted more often. Speed limits vary from 55 mph in the more rural sections to 25 mph through downtown or more thickly settled sections. Some of the downtown areas have had by-passes built around them, but even there speed limits are in the 35-40 mph range.
The most noteable exception, as is pointed out abovce, is in the coastal town of Wiscasset. US Rt 1 runs through the heart of the business district, with no convenient or easy route around town as an alternative. Through traffic on Rt 1 competes with "locals" moving in and out of angle-parking spaces as they go about their day-to-day business or tourists who want to stop and visit the local shops. Through traffic is further slowed by seveal pedestrian cross-walks where traffic is required to stop by law for those wishing to cross the street. In mid-summer (late June-July-August) getting through the two miles of so of the built-up section of Wiscasset has been known to take as long as 30-45 minutes.
If it helps, much of US Rt 1 between Portland and Camden roughly parallels the coast, but is not truly a "coastal" route. In many places the road runs well inland from that actual coast and you can go miles at a time without even a glimpse of the ocean....so if your thought was "take Rt 1 and see the ocean (similar to sections of Highway 1 in California" that won't be your experience in Maine.
The most convenient route from Portland to Camden, with the easiest driving and least traffic inconvenience, is Rt 95 or Rt 295 from Portland to Augusta, then Rt 17 to almost into Rockland, then Rt 90 north to join US Rt 1 just south of Camden. Offers multi-lane driving as far as Augusta, good two-lane road from Augusta to the coast, and some nice rural-Maine scenery without the traffic aggravation on Rt 1....at least in the summertime. Between now and Memorial Day, traveling Rt 1 should be easy and relatively free-flowing.
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