Portal:U.S. Roads

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The highway system of the United States is a network of interconnected state, U.S., and Interstate highways. Each of the fifty states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, American Samoa, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands own and maintain a part of this vast system, including U.S. and Interstate highways, which are not owned or maintained at the federal level.

Interstate Highways have the highest speed limits and the highest traffic. Interstates are numbered in a grid: even-numbered routes for east–west routes (with the lowest numbers along Mexico and the Gulf of Mexico), and odd-numbered routes are north–south routes (with the lowest numbers along the Pacific Ocean). Three-digit Interstates are, generally, either beltways or spurs of their parent Interstates (for example, Interstate 510 is a spur into the city of New Orleans, Louisiana, and is connected to Interstate 10).

U.S. Numbered Highways are the original interstate highways, dating back to 1926. U.S. Highways are also numbered in a grid: even numbered for east–west routes (with the lowest numbers along Canada) and odd numbered for north–south routes (with the lowest numbers along the Atlantic Ocean). Three-digit highways, also known as "child routes," are branches off their main one- or two-digit "parents" (for example, U.S. Route 202 is a branch of U.S. Route 2). However, US 101, rather than a "child" of US 1, is considered a "mainline" U.S. Route.

State highways are the next level in the hierarchy. Each state and territory has its own system for numbering highways, some more systematic than others. Each state also has its own design for its highway markers; the number in a circle is the default sign, but many choose a different design connected to the state, such as an outline of the state with the number inside. Many states also operate a system of county highways.

National Forest Scenic Byway marker

Scenic byways can be designated over any classification of road in the United States. There are the National Scenic Byways, National Forest Scenic Byways and Bureau of Land Management Back Country Byways at the national level. Most states have their own system for designating byways, some more systematic than others. Indian tribes may designate byways as well.

Selected article

A map of the elevated option for the Bay Freeway, subject to public hearings in 1970

The Bay Freeway, also referred to as the Mercer Street Connection, was a proposed elevated freeway in the South Lake Union neighborhood of Seattle, Washington, replacing 0.7 miles (1.1 km) of Mercer Street between Interstate 5 (I-5) and Aurora Avenue North at the Seattle Center. Planning for the freeway began in 1954, with the proposal for a freeway from Elliott Bay to the Central Freeway, later I-5, via Broad and Mercer streets added to the city's comprehensive plan in 1957. Funded by a bond measure passed by Seattle voters in 1960, plans for the newly christened and elevated Bay Freeway to serve a multi-purpose stadium at the Seattle Center were opposed by citizens groups at public hearings in 1967, forcing the Seattle Engineering Department to consider other designs. After determining that a cut-and-cover tunnel would not be feasible, a second series of public hearings were held in 1970, leading to widespread controversy and a civil suit launched in opposition to the freeway. The lawsuit ended in November 1971, with King County Superior Court Judge Solie M. Ringold ruling that it was a major deviation from the voter-approved 1960 plan, forcing a referendum to continue on with the project. On February 8, 1972, the Bay Freeway project was rejected by a 10,000-vote margin in a municipal referendum, alongside the repeal of the R.H. Thomson Expressway, postponing congestion relief on Mercer Street until the Mercer Corridor Project in 2012.

Recently selected: Interstate 470 (Kansas) • Interstate 8 • Minnesota State Highway 7

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Before it was Interstate 8.jpg
The abandoned alignment of U.S. Route 80 across the In-Ko-Pah Gorge in California.

Recently selected: Florida State Road 972 • Utah State Route 143 • Maryland Route 197

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US 25 on Gratiot Avenue in Detroit in 1941


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Nominations and votes for selected articles and selected pictures are always needed. Anyone can nominate an article, and anyone can vote for an article. You can also recommend items for Did you know?. If you have news related to U.S. roads, you can add it to the news section above.

See also Wikipedia:WikiProject U.S. Roads/to do, Category:U.S. road articles needing attention and individual state highway project to-do lists.

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Numbered highways in the United States

References and notes

  1. ^ "Major Rock Slide on US 52 at Ashland Bridge; Cleanup Expected to Take Days". Huntington, WV: WSAZ-TV. April 10, 2015. Retrieved April 10, 2015. 
  2. ^ US 41 Interstate Conversion Team (April 9, 2015). "US 41 Interstate Conversion: Wisconsin State Line–Green Bay, in Kenosha, Racine, Milwaukee, Waukesha, Washington, Dodge, Fond du Lac, Winnebago, Outagamie, and Brown Counties". Wisconsin Department of Transportation. Archived from the original on April 10, 2015. 
  3. ^ Montgomery, Jeff (February 25, 2015). "Coming to Delaware's I-95: 65 mph speed limit". The News Journal (Wilmington, DE). Retrieved March 1, 2015. 
  4. ^ Wurfel, Sara & Murray, Dave (December 31, 2014). "Gov. Rick Snyder Signs Bills Focused on Creating Good Government Practices: Also Signs Memorial Highway, 'Pure Michigan Byways' Bills" (Press release). Office of the Governor. Archived from the original on January 3, 2015. Retrieved January 1, 2015. 
  5. ^ "I-164 Renamed to I-69 by End of Year". Indiana Department of Transportation. November 18, 2014. Retrieved November 18, 2014. 
  6. ^ "Final section of ICC to Laurel, new I-95 interchange to open this weekend". The Baltimore Sun. November 5, 2014. Retrieved November 9, 2014. 
  7. ^ Higgs, Larry (November 3, 2014). "New southbound Turnpike lanes open". The Star-Ledger (Newark, NJ). Retrieved November 3, 2014. 
  8. ^ Schaefer, Mari A. (October 27, 2014). "Expanded lanes open on New Jersey Turnpike". The Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved November 3, 2014. 
  9. ^ Forgey, Pat (September 18, 2014). "Parnell hails DOT's new Juneau road plan; Walker calls for fiscal caution". Alaska Dispatch News (Anchorage, AK). Retrieved September 19, 2014. 
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