U.S. Route 34
|Length:||1,122 mi (1,806 km)|
|Existed:||1926 – present|
|West end:||US 40 at Granby, CO|
|I-294 at Western Springs, IL|
|East end:||IL 43 at Berwyn, IL|
U.S. Route 34 is an east–west United States highway that runs for 1,122 miles (1,806 km) from north-central Colorado to the western suburbs of Chicago. Through Rocky Mountain National Park it is known as the Trail Ridge Road where it reaches 12,183 ft (3,713 m), making it the highest paved through highway in the United States. The highway's western terminus is Granby, Colorado at U.S. Route 40. Its eastern terminus is in Berwyn, Illinois at Illinois Route 43 and Historic US 66.
U.S. Route 34 becomes a toll road for a short distance in Colorado, where it passes through Rocky Mountain National Park.
Route description 
Within Rocky Mountain National Park US 34 is known as Trail Ridge Road. Due to its high elevation through the park and over the Continental Divide, Route 34 closes entirely in winter from the Colorado River Trailhead on the west (10 miles north of the Grand Lake entrance) to Many Parks Curve on the east (8 miles from the Estes Park entrance.) Closure runs roughly from mid-October to Memorial Day weekend in May, and can occur at any time in summer due to high alpine snow storms.
In the state of Nebraska, U.S. Route 34 is a major east–west arterial surface road along the southern portion of Nebraska. It enters Nebraska west of Haigler and overlaps other routes for the majority of its routing. U.S. 34 passes through Hastings, Grand Island, and Lincoln before entering Iowa east of Plattsmouth over the Plattsmouth Bridge.
U.S. Route 34 from between Hastings and Grand Island is known as the Tom Osborne Expressway, which is named for the former Hastings resident, Nebraska Cornhuskers football coach, and Congressman. Also, the segment from the Lancaster County/Cass County border to Nebraska Highway 1 south of Elmwood is the Bess Streeter Aldrich Memorial Highway, after the former author and Elmwood resident.
In the state of Iowa, U.S. Route 34 is a major east–west arterial surface road across southern Iowa. It enters Iowa west of Pacific Junction and is briefly concurrent with Interstate 29. U.S. 34 then passes through Glenwood, Red Oak, and Creston before intersecting Interstate 35 at Osceola. East of Osceola, it continues through Chariton and Georgetown then onto Albia before meeting U.S. Route 63 at a traffic circle in Ottumwa.
East of Ottumwa to Burlington, the highway overlaps Iowa Highway 163. This segment of highway is an expressway with some freeway segments. As of November 12, 2008, it bypasses Fairfield and then bypasses Mt. Pleasant, with a portion of this also concurrent with U.S. Route 218, which is also the Iowa route for the Avenue of the Saints. It then continues southeast towards Burlington bypassing New London and then Danville and Middletown. The freeway segment through Burlington was completed in the 1970s. It then crosses the Mississippi River on the Great River Bridge into Illinois which was completed in the early 1990s.
Much of this route was originally known as the Bluegrass Highway and parallels tracks of what was originally the Burlington and Missouri River Railroad and is now the BNSF. Amtrak's California Zephyr passenger rail service also parallels this route.
U.S. 34 in the state of Iowa is officially designated the Red Bull Highway in honor of the 34th Infantry (Red Bull) Division.
In the state of Illinois, U.S. Route 34 enters from the Mississippi River across from Burlington, Iowa. It passes through or around the cities of Monmouth, Galesburg, Princeton, Mendota, Oswego, Aurora, Naperville, Lisle, Downers Grove, Westmont, Hinsdale, Western Springs, and La Grange and continues in a largely southwest-northeast direction to its eastern terminus at Illinois Route 43 and Historic US 66 in Berwyn. Through much of the Chicago area, the highway is known as "Ogden Avenue", after William Butler Ogden, Chicago's first mayor.
Nebraska and Iowa are planning a new U.S. Route 34 bridge which would reroute U.S. 34 north of the Platte River concurrent with U.S. 75, then turn east to cross the Missouri River south of Bellevue, Nebraska. It would then align with the current U.S. 34 alignment near Glenwood, Iowa.
Major intersections 
- I-25 in Loveland, Colorado
- I-76 from Brush, Colorado to Wiggins, Colorado - concurrency 9 miles (14 km)
- I-80 near Grand Island, Nebraska
- I-80 in Lincoln, Nebraska
- I-29 from near Pacific Junction, Iowa to near Glenwood, Iowa - concurrency 3 miles (4.8 km)
- I-35 in Osceola, Iowa
- US 61 in Burlington, Iowa
- US 67 in Monmouth, Illinois
- I-74 near Galesburg, Illinois
- I-80 in Princeton, Illinois
- I-39 in Meriden, Illinois
- I-355 in Lisle, Illinois
- I-294 in Hinsdale, Illinois
See also 
Bannered routes 
- U.S. Route 34 Business - Chariton, Iowa
- U.S. Route 34 Business - Ottumwa, Iowa
- U.S. Route 34 Business - Fairfield, Iowa
- U.S. Route 34 Business - Mount Pleasant, Iowa
- US Highways from US 1 to US 830 Robert V. Droz
- "Road Status Report - Rocky Mountain National Park". Nps.gov. Retrieved 2012-08-17.
- Illinois Highway Ends: US 34
- US-34 Nebraska Approach Missouri River Bridge, Bellevue 34-7(118)
- Ogden Avenue history and photography at Forgotten Chicago.
|Browse numbered routes|
|← SH 30||CO||SH 35 →|
|← N-33||NE||N-35 →|
|← Iowa 31||IA||I-35 →|
|← IL 33||IL||IL 34 →|