Interstate 76 (Colorado–Nebraska)

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For the Interstate 76 that runs through Ohio, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey, see Interstate 76 (Ohio–New Jersey). For the 1997 video game, see Interstate '76.

Interstate 76 marker

Interstate 76
Route information
Length: 188.10 mi[1][2] (302.72 km)
Existed: 1975 – present
Major junctions
West end: I‑70 in Arvada, CO
  US 287 in Arvada, CO
I‑25 / US 87 in North Washington, CO
US 36 / I‑270 in North Washington, CO
US 6 / US 85 in Commerce City, CO
US 85 in Commerce City, CO
US 34 near Wiggins, CO
US 34 near Fort Morgan, CO
US 6 near Brush, CO
US 6 near Sterling, CO
US 385 near Julesburg, CO
East end: I‑80 near Big Springs, NE
Highway system
SH 75 CO SH 78
US 75 NE US 77

Interstate 76 (I-76) is an Interstate Highway that runs from Interstate 70 in Arvada, Colorado (near Denver) to an intersection with Interstate 80 near Big Springs, Nebraska. The vast majority of the road's route is in Colorado.

Route description[edit]

Lengths
  mi km
CO 184.86 297.50
NE 2.48 3.99
Total 187.34 301.49

Colorado[edit]

I-70 at its interchange with I-76

I-76 begins at an interchange with I-70 in Arvada. From I-70, the freeway heads east to an exit at SH 95, known as Sheridan Boulevard. The route heads northeastward across US 287, known as Federal Boulevard, to an interchange with I-25. Running roughly parallel to the nearby Clear Creek, I-76 meets another interchange with Interstate 270 in North Washington, Colorado, where the Clear Creek joins the South Platte River, which is crossed by I-76. After an interchange at SH 224, I-76 joins US 85 and US 6 at Brighton Boulevard. Past Derby, US 85 veers away from I-76 at Dayton Way. The combined routes of US 6 and I-76 head northeastward, crossing SH 2, named Sable Boulevard, before meeting an exit at E-470, a toll road. Past E-470, the freeway exits the Denver-Aurora metropolitan area.

Passing just west of Barr Lake, the freeway heads northeastward east of Brighton. Near Lochbuie, the freeway crosses SH 7 before crossing into Weld County. I-76 meets SH 52 in Hudson, the next city along the freeway. Past Hudson, the combined routes of US 6 and I-76 turn slightly eastward into Keenesburg, which is served by a business loop (I-76 BUS). I-76 then turns northeast and east into Roggen, where it meets County Road 73. The highway heads away from the farmland it was formerly running through and traverses a large grassland area. Just south of the Empire Reservoir, the freeway turns back east, crossing into Morgan County within circular fields. Heading east, I-76 heads into Wiggins, near which I-76 joins US 34. The three combined routes head east through farms.

I-76 near Brush

The freeway heads east toward Fort Morgan, spawning another business loop that carries US 34 away from I-76. The freeway heads east into Fort Morgan, meeting SH 52, now running again near the South Platte River. Still running between the South Platte River to the north and its business loop to the south, I-76 heads just north of Brush, where it meets a cloverleaf interchange with SH 71. US 34 veers away from the business loop as I-76 turns back east, crossing over the business loop, which does not terminate at the freeway. I-76 BUS carries US 6 toward Hillrose. Bypassing that city, I-76 traverses northeast into Washington County, with farms to the north along the river and grasslands to the south. Passing the Prewitt Reservoir, the freeway heads into Logan County. Heading northeasterly, the route crosses SH 63, which serves Atwood. I-76 BUS then enters Sterling, which is near I-76. The business loops turns abruptly east within the city, carrying US 6. US 6 continues past the interchange with the business route.

I-76 continues parallel to the South Platte River, surrounded by farms to the northwest and plains to the southeast. Northwest of the river is US 138, which serves several towns bypassed by the freeway. I-76 has an exit at SH 55 which serves the town of Crook. With farms on the south part of the freeway as well, I-76 enters Sedgwick County, crossing SH 59 which heads to Sedgwick. The freeway then veers eastward before turning back northeast toward Julesburg. I-76 comes to an exit at U.S. Highway 385, which heads northwest to Julesburg. I-76 then heads northeast to the Nebraska state line.[3] [4]

Nebraska[edit]

In Nebraska, I-76 stretches just over three miles (5 km). It is signed as a north–south direction, as opposed to the east–west designation in Colorado. Its entire route is located in Deuel County, parallel to the South Platte River and U.S. Highway 138. Its only interchange is at Interstate 80, numbered exit 102 based on I-80's mileage.

History[edit]

I-76 exit along E-470

Until 1975, both the western segment of Interstate 76 and a portion of the eastern Interstate 76 were signed as Interstate 80S. In July 1976, the already-completed route, I-80S, was renumbered to I-76 in accordance with American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) policy to remove the letter suffixes from Interstate routes and to avoid the confusion of this route with Interstate 80. This prompted the replacement of around 500 signs in eliminating I-80S. The number, "76", has an association with 1876, the year Colorado was admitted as a state.

I-76 was conceived in August 1958. The Colorado portion was planned and built first. In December 1969, the Nebraska Department of Roads worked together with the Colorado Department of Highways to open a three-mile (5 km) long route connecting Interstate 80 with the rest of I-80S in Colorado.[1] The original western terminus of I-76 was at I-25, as planned. The western extension to Interstate 70 was built in the late 1980s and early 1990s. By its completion in November 2002, the total cost was about $45.5 million.[1]

In 1968, Interstate 25 and U.S. Highway 85 was open to the general traffic to the Denver vicinity after all the structures located throughout the route were completed, as well as meeting the criteria of the Interstate standards. Structures connected several interchanges; each one connecting Interstate 270, U.S. Highway 85, Dahlia Street, Washington Street, 74th Avenue, and York Street. The completion also included structures in which each cross the Burlington Canal, Platte River, and the Union Pacific Railroad. By October 24, 1970, the route was open to traffic from Sedgwick to Julesburg, as well as the completion of the route, connecting from its western terminus of I-25 in Colorado to its eastern terminus at I-80 near Big Springs, Nebraska.[1]

Beginning in 1990, six additional miles were planned and constructed west of I-25. By October 2002, all of I-76 was open, and the highway reached Interstate 70 at Arvada, Colorado, which is now the current western terminus of I-76.[1]

Exit list[edit]

Colorado[edit]

County Location Mile[1][2] km Exit Destinations Notes
Jefferson Arvada 0.000–
0.538
0.000–
0.866
I‑70 west – Grand Junction Westbound exit and eastbound entrance
0.000 0.000 1A SH 121 (Wadsworth Boulevard) Westbound exit and eastbound entrance
JeffersonAdams
county line
  1.768 2.845 1B SH 95 (Sheridan Boulevard)
Adams   3.223 5.187 3 US 287 (Federal Boulevard)
  4.210 6.775 4 Pecos Street
  5.777 9.297 5 I‑25 – Fort Collins, Colorado Springs Westbound exit to I-25 north is via exit 6B
  6.803 10.948 6A I‑270 east – Limon, Aurora Signed as exit 6 eastbound
  6.803 10.948 6B I‑270 west to US 36 – Fort Collins, Boulder Westbound exit and entrance only
  8.052 12.958 8 SH 224 (74th Avenue) Eastbound exit and westbound entrance
  9.483 15.261 9 US 6 west / US 85 south – Commerce City West end of US 6/US 85 overlap; westbound exit and eastbound entrance
  10.466 16.843 10 88th Avenue
  11.549 18.586 11 96th Avenue
  12.502 20.120 12 US 85 north – Greeley, Brighton East end of US 85 overlap; no eastbound entrance
Brighton 16.477 26.517 16 SH 2 (Sable Boulevard) / 120th Avenue – Denver International Airport
Commerce City 18.079 29.095 18 E-470 south – Limon, Airport Sign.svg Denver International Airport Westbound exit and eastbound entrance
Brighton 19.723 31.741 20 136th Avenue
21.081 33.927 21 144th Avenue
22.407 36.061 22 Bromley Lane
Lochbuie 25.145 40.467 25 SH 7 west – Lochbuie, Brighton
Weld Hudson 31.480 50.662 31 SH 52 – Hudson, Fort Lupton
34.412 55.381 34 Kersey Road
  38.925 62.644 39 Keenesburg (I-76 Bus. south)
  47.972 77.203 48 Roggen
  49.236 79.238 49 Painter Road Westbound exit and eastbound entrance
  57.219 92.085 57 County Road 91
  60 SH 144 east – Orchard
Morgan   63.883 102.810 64 Wiggins Eastbound exit and westbound entrance
  66.099 106.376 66A SH 39 / SH 52 – Goodrich, Wiggins
  66.288 106.680 66B US 34 west – Greeley, Estes Park West end of US 34 overlap; westbound exit and eastbound entrance
  73.130 117.691 73 Long Bridge Road
  75.280 121.151 75 US 34 east / I‑76 Bus. east – Fort Morgan East end of US 34 overlap
  78.852 126.900 79 SH 144 – Weldona
Fort Morgan 80.139 128.971 80 SH 52
81.648 131.400 82 Barlow Road – Fort Morgan
  85.713 137.942 86 Dodd Bridge Road
  88.695 142.741 89 Hospital Road
  89.643 144.266 90 SH 71 to US 34 – Brush, Akron, Limon, Snyder Signed as exits 90A (south) and 90B (north)
  91.693 147.566 92 US 6 east to US 34 – Brush, Yuma East end of US 6 overlap
  95.382 153.502 95 Hillrose
Washington   102.086 164.291 102 Merino
Logan   115.197 185.392 115 SH 63 – Atwood
Sterling 124.756 200.775 125 US 6 to SH 61 south – Holyoke, Otis, Sterling
  133.511 214.865 134 Iliff
  140.846 226.670 141 Proctor
  148.880 239.599 149 SH 55 – Crook
  155.288 249.912 155 Red Lion Road
Sedgwick   164.933 265.434 165 SH 59 – Sedgwick, Haxtun
  172.017 276.835 172 Ovid
Julesburg 180.221 290.038 180 US 385 – Julesburg
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

Nebraska[edit]

The entire route is in Deuel County.

Location Mile km Exit Destinations Notes
  2.48 3.99 102 I‑80 west – Sidney Eastbound exit and westbound entrance
  3.15 5.07 I‑80 east – Omaha Eastbound exit and westbound entrance, exit no. corresponds to I-80
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Route map: Google / Bing