Interstate 49 in Arkansas

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This article is about the section of Interstate 49 in Arkansas. For the entire length of the highway, see Interstate 49.

Interstate 49 marker

Interstate 49
Route information
Existed: March 28, 2014 – present
Major junctions
Southern Arkansas segment
South end: US 71 in Doddridge
Northern Arkansas segment
South end: I‑40 / US 71 in Alma
North end: US 71 near Bella Vista
Highway system
Hwy. 48 US 49

Interstate 49 (I-49) is an Interstate Highway in the US state of Arkansas. It starts at I-40 and US 71 in Alma and runs north to Bella Vista; where the freeway terminates awaiting completion of the Bella Vista Bypass.

Route description[edit]

What is now I-49 north of the US 71 junction

The route starts at the Louisiana state line, then, from the US 71 interchange in Doddridge, I-49 follows the former Highway 549 up to I-30 in Texarkana, then heads west and follows through the Texas state line for a few hundred feet.

It begins again at exit 12 along I-40, 12 miles (19 km) east of the Oklahoma state line, or one mile (1.6 km) west of Alma, and continues for over 65 miles (105 km), through Crawford, Washington and Benton counties. Just north of the Crawford-Washington county line is the Bobby Hopper Tunnel, the only large highway tunnel in Arkansas; its namesake was the chairman of the Arkansas Highway Commission during its construction. Notable cities along the route are Fayetteville, Springdale, Rogers, and Bentonville. From I-40 north to Fayetteville, I-49 runs roughly parallel to Highway 71. Just south of Fayetteville, I-49 combines with Highways 71 and 62, forming the major expressway through the Northwest Arkansas metro area (Fayetteville, Springdale, Rogers, and Bentonville). I-49 ends where the expressway ends just north of Bentonville, where it becomes US 71 and Bella Vista Way, the main street of Bella Vista several miles further to the Missouri border. US 71 (and US 62) are unsigned on the portions that are concurrent with I-49.

In June of 2014: Interstate 540 is now Interstate 49 Between I-40 in Alma and US-71B in Bentonville just South of Missouri Border.


The first portion of I-49 was completed in the late 1990s and was opened to Mountainburg as AR 540. On January 8, 1999 the road was fully opened to traffic and was re-designated I-540 and also designated the "John Paul Hammerschmidt Highway" in honor of a former U.S. Representative from Arkansas.[1] Having been planned since the early 1970s, it created a bypass for the older US Highway 71.

Two bridges carry I-49 over a valley in the Boston Mountains

The state of Arkansas originally asked AASHTO to allow the Interstate segment between Fort Smith and Bentonville to be named I-49, to emphasize plans to extend the route from Shreveport, Louisiana through Arkansas to Kansas City, Missouri.[2] AASHTO refused, and the route opened in 1999 as a northern extension of I-540.[3] AHTD conducted a feasibility study of adding an interchange at Highway 162 in Van Buren in 1991, with the results adopted by the Arkansas State Highway Commission in 1992.[2] The Arkansas State Highway Commission (ASHC) studied a designation for I-540 between Mountainburg and Fayetteville as an Arkansas Scenic Byway in a meeting on November 17, 1998. One of the requirements of designation is "an active organization composed of various private and governmental groups, businesses, and agencies who are interested in preservation, enhancement, marketing, and development of the route’s scenic, cultural, recreational, and historic qualities,". The ASHC deemed that since the highway was a new location route, it did not have sufficient businesses to satisfy the requirement, so the ASHC deemed itself a partner organization and proceeded with a designation study.[4] The route was added to the scenic byway system the following year.[5]

The plan for I-49 became official on December 12, 2012 nationwide. It was decided to follow Arkansas Highway 549 as the route was being eliminated. The north extension from I-30 to US 71 / US 59 was finished on May 15, 2013. The unfinished route into the Louisiana border is expected to open in 2014.


I-49 in Northwest Arkansas

Eventually, I-49 will cross the entire state. It will cross into Texas for about 5 to 10 miles (8.0 to 16.1 km) and then cross the Future Red River Bridge back into Arkansas. It will eventually reach De Queen in the near future. It will run near the western border of the state from De Queen to Fort Smith. A bypass of Bella Vista will connect the longest stretch of I-49 to the completed road in Missouri.

Exit list[edit]

County Location Mile km Exit Destinations Notes
I-49 Continues into Louisiana
Miller Doddridge 4.32 6.95 4 US 71 – Doddridge
7.01 11.28 6 CR 197
Fouke 16.46 26.49 16 US 71 – Fouke
18.17 29.24 18 North Fouke Road
Ferguson 23.77 38.25 24 CR 10 – Ferguson
Texarkana 26.35 42.41 26 Hwy. 237 (Blackman Ferry Road)
28.87 46.46 29A US 71 – Texarkana US 71 southbound to I-49 via entrance ramps
29.49 47.46 29B Hwy. 151 to I‑369 / US 59 / Loop 151 Directional T interchange; Interstate 49/Loop 151 overlap
31 Hwy. 196 (Genoa Road) – Genoa
32 US 82 (9th Street) / US 67 / 19th Street – Texarkana, Hope Southern exit to US 67
35 US 67 / Arkansas Boulevard / Four States Fair Parkway – Texarkana, Hope Northern exit to US 67
37 I‑30 – Little Rock, Dallas Split into exits 37A (east) and 37B (west)
41 CR 23 (Sanderson Lane)
42 US 71 / US 59 – Texarkana, Ashdown, Fort Smith Half-built diamond interchange; temporary northern end of I-49
Temporary gap in I-49; route will continue into Texas then back to Arkansas
Bowie Texarkana 44 I‑369 – Houston, Texarkana Proposed interchange with Future I-49 ?
  46 CR 2320 (Hush Puppy Rd) Proposed interchange with Future I-49 ?
Red River Red River Bridge (BowieLittle River county/state line)
Temporary gap in I-49
Sebastian Fort Smith 187 US 71 – Fort Smith, Greenwood Temporary Southern End of Future I-49 to Open in Late 2014
Fort Chaffee 190 Massard Road Proposed interchange with Future I-49 to Open in Late 2014
191 Roberts Boulevard Proposed interchange with Future I-49 to Open in Late 2014
Barling 193 Hwy. 22 / Hwy. 255 – Barling, Fort Smith Temporary Northern End of Future I-49 to Open in Late 2014
Arkansas River Arkansas River bridge (SebastianCrawford county line)
Crawford Van Buren 196 Hwy. 59 (Gun Club Rd) Proposed interchange with Future I-49 ?
Kibler 202 Hwy. 162 (Kibler Hwy) Proposed interchange with Future I-49 ?
Alma 204 Hwy. 162 (Henry St) Proposed interchange with Future I-49 ?
19.23 30.95 20 I‑40 / US 71 north – Little Rock, Oklahoma City, Alma Temporary southern end of I-49
20.31 32.69 21 Collum Lane I-540 Exit's 20 through 93 will be renumbered to I-49 New Exit's 206 through 279 in the near future
23.67 38.09 24 Hwy. 282 – Rudy
29.10 46.83 29 Hwy. 282 – Mountainburg
33.53 53.96 34 Hwy. 282 – Chester
Washington   41.14–
Bobby Hopper Tunnel
  44.99 72.40 45 Hwy. 74 – Winslow
West Fork 52.78 84.94 53 Hwy. 170 – West Fork
Greenland 57.88 93.15 58 Greenland
Fayetteville 60.50 97.37 60 US 71 (Fulbright Expressway) / Hwy. 112 (Razorback Road) / Hwy. 265 (Cato Springs Road) South end of US 71 concurrency, northbound access to US 71 and southbound access from US 71 via Hwy. 112, northbound access from Hwy. 112 or Hwy. 265 via US 71
61.98 99.75 62 US 62 west / Hwy. 180 east (Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard) South end of US 62/Hwy. 16 concurrency
63.79 102.66 64 Hwy. 16 west / Hwy. 112S (Wedington Drive) North end of Hwy. 16 concurrency
65 Porter Road
66.01 106.23 66 Hwy. 112 (Garland Avenue)
66.48 106.99 67 US 71B – Fayetteville Business District
Johnson 68.93 110.93 69 Johnson Mill Boulevard
Springdale 70 Don Tyson Parkway Opened on July 7, 2014[6]
71.50 115.07 72 US 412 (Sunset Avenue)
72.91 117.34 73 Elm Springs Road
Benton   76 Wagon Wheel Road
Lowell 78 Hwy. 264 (W Monroe Avenue)
Rogers 81 Pleasant Grove Road
82 Promenade Boulevard
83 Pinnacle Hills Pkwy
Bentonville 85 US 71B (SE Walton Boulevard) / Hwy. 12 west / W Walnut Street South end of Hwy. 12 concurrency
86 US 62 east / Hwy. 12 west (SE 14th Street) / Hwy. 102 (Hudson Road) North end of US 62/Hwy. 12 concurrency
88 Hwy. 72 east (Central Avenue)
93 US 71B (Walton Boulevard) Proposed interchange with Future I-49
Temporary gap in I-49; route will continue north towards Bella Vista and Missouri
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

Related routes[edit]

Arkansas Highway 549[edit]

Highway 549
Location: DoddridgeTexarkana
Length: 41.94 mi (67.50 km)
Existed: 2004–2014

Highway 549 was the temporary designation of Future Interstate 49 southeast of Texarkana. Designated a distance of 29.49 miles (47.46 km), Highway 549 first opened to traffic in December 2004 between Texarkana and Fouke. A second section, between Fouke, and Doddridge, opened October 21, 2005. A fourth section, between Arkansas Street in Texarkana and U.S. Highway 71 north of Texarkana opened May 15, 2013.

Interstate 540[edit]

Interstate 540
Location: AlmaBentonville
Existed: 1995–2014

I-540, which runs concurrently with US-71, and runs from Alma to Bentonville, Arkansas, is now partially part of I-49. Arkansas Highway 549, from US 71 Doddridge (completed October 21, 2005) to the Texas state line, ending at US 71, north of Texarkana, is also now part of I-49.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Gerhardt, Kara (January 8, 1999). "Secretary Slater Joins in Dedication of Final Segment of Arkansas’ I-540" (Press release). United States Department of Transportation. Retrieved May 2, 2009 – via The Crittenden Automotive Library. 
  2. ^ a b "Minutes of the Meeting" (PDF). Arkansas State Highway Commission. January 22, 1991. pp. 199, 868. Retrieved December 24, 2013. 
  3. ^ "Minutes of the Meeting" (PDF). Arkansas State Highway Commission. August 6, 1997. p. 960. Retrieved December 24, 2013. 
  4. ^ "Minutes of the Meeting" (PDF). Arkansas State Highway Commission. November 17, 1998. p. 1205. Retrieved December 24, 2013. 
  5. ^ "Minutes of the Meeting" (PDF). Arkansas State Highway Commission. November 17, 1999. p. 1411. Retrieved December 24, 2013. 
  6. ^ Caraway, Steve (July 3, 2014). "Springdale's Tyson Interchange to Open Month Early: Work Will Create Easy Access to Ballpark Development Area". NWA Online. Retrieved July 3, 2014. 

External links[edit]

Route map: Google / Bing

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