Massachusetts Route 79
|Length:||18.47 mi (29.72 km)|
|South end:||I-195/Route 138 in Fall River|
|Route 18 in Lakeville|
|North end:||Route 105 in Lakeville|
Route 79 begins as the Fall River Viaduct, a double-decked elevated highway that begins just south of the Braga Bridge, at the point where the road splits between ramps to Route 138 and I-195. The road continues northward under the Braga Bridge for a third of a mile before splitting into a single four-lane highway surface, elevated on embankments. It has two exits northbound and southbound to Davol Street, the road which travels in two one-way routes on either side of the highway, and also provides access to Route 6 between President Avenue and the Brightman Street Bridge, where that route and Route 138 formerly crossed the Taunton River. The Veterans Memorial Bridge, completed in 2011, now connects to Route 79 just north of the old Brightman Street Bridge, with both northbound and southbound ramps.
The route continues northward, passing under North Main Street with exit access to that street. It then connects to Route 24 at that route's Exit 7. There is no access between Route 79 north and Route 24 south, or vice-versa. The route continues concurrently along Route 24 into the Assonet section of the town of Freetown, where it leaves its concurrency at Exit 9, turning on to South Main Street. (South Main Street southbound in Assonet connects to North Main Street in Fall River.) The route passes through the village before turning eastward along Elm Street, intertwining with the Assonet River as both make their way into Berkley.
In Berkley, Route 79 passes through the village of Myricks, in the far eastern end of the town. It crosses the Old Colony Railroad lines and County Road, the former alignment of Route 140, before crossing the current route at Exit 10 just over the Taunton line. In Taunton, the route follows along the Taunton-Lakeville town line before leaving Taunton completely. In Lakeville, the route heads through the northern part of the town, crossing Route 18 and passing the former Lakeville Hospital, before ending at a 4-way intersection with Route 105 and Commercial Drive, the main road which leads to the Middleboro/Lakeville MBTA Station.
In 2012, the Route 79 Relocation Project in Lakeville and Middleboro was completed. Before the project, the terminus of Route 79 still ended at Route 105, and only 1/10 of a mile north of its current terminus, however it was too close of proximity to the southbound ramps for Interstate 495. Also, by relocating Route 79 to the 4-way intersection with Route 105 and Commercial Drive, traffic was eased during rush hour. Instead of Route 79 traffic looping onto Route 105 to get to the MBTA station, the new intersection was constructed to provide an easier access to the MBTA station from areas such as North Lakeville, East Taunton, Berkley and Freetown.
In 2013, following the completion of the Veterans Memorial Bridge project, the route's highway section will be repaved in Fall River. MassDOT is currently designing a $115 million project that will replace the Fall River Viaduct in the future.
|Bristol||Fall River||0.0||0.0||Route 138 south – South Fall River, Tiverton, RI||Southern terminus of Route 79|
|0.1||0.2||I-195 – Providence, RI, New Bedford, Cape Cod||Interchange|
|0.3||0.5||US 6 / Davol Street||Interchange; northbound exit and southbound entrance; access via Route 138|
|US 6 / Route 138 north – North Fall River, Somerset||Interchange; To Veterans Memorial Bridge|
|North Main Street— North Fall River||Interchange|
|4.1||6.6||Route 24 south to I-195||Southern terminus of concurrency with Route 24; Exit 7 on Route 24|
|Airport Road / North Main Street||Route 24 Exit 8A|
|Assonet||Innovation Way||Route 24 Exit 8B, formerly Executive Park Drive|
|Route 24 north – Boston||End of concurrency with Route 24 at Exit 9|
|Berkley||12.8||20.6||County Street||Former intersection of Route 79 and Route 140|
|Taunton||13.1||21.1||Route 140 – East Freetown, New Bedford, Taunton, Boston||Route 140 Exit 10|
|Lakeville||18.48||29.74||Route 105 to I-495||Northern terminus of Route 79|
|1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi