U.S. Route 7 in Connecticut
|Maintained by ConnDOT|
|Length:||78.29 mi (126.00 km)|
|South end:||I‑95 / Conn. Tpk. in Norwalk|
| US 1 in Norwalk
Route 15 / Merritt Pkwy. in Norwalk
I‑84 / US 6 in Danbury
US 202 from Danbury to New Milford
US 44 in Canaan
|North end:||US 7 at the Massachusetts state line in Canaan|
U.S. Route 7 (US 7) is a north-south U.S. Highway which runs 78 miles (126 km) in the state of Connecticut. The route begins at Interstate 95 in Norwalk and proceeds north to the Massachusetts border in Canaan. US 7 was aligned to its current route around 1930, and since then three sections totaling around 12 miles (19 km) have been upgraded to freeway standards.
US 7 in Connecticut is also known as Route 7, the Ethan Allen Highway, and Super 7. It is mostly a surface road but has three short expressway sections in the Norwalk and Danbury areas. US 7 begins in Norwalk with a 4-mile (6.4 km) expressway that runs nearly to the Wilton town line. There are three exits on this short section, signed as "The Forty Third Infantry Division Memorial Highway". Exit 1, just past the southern terminus at Interstate 95, leads to the Central Norwalk Business District and US 1. Exit 2 leads to Route 123 which extends from US 1 in Norwalk through the town of New Canaan to the New York State line. After Exit 2, the expressway reduces to four lanes from six. Exit 3 leads to the Merritt Parkway (Route 15) southbound. This interchange was half built and only allows southbound access from the expressway; northbound access is gained via Route 123 at Exit 2. The expressway section ends at Grist Mill Road in Norwalk, about one-half mile past Exit 3.
Near Danbury, another expressway section was built beginning 1-mile (1.6 km) south of Interstate 84 near the Danbury Airport. This section is also signed as "The Forty Third Infantry Division Memorial Highway". Through Danbury proper, Route 7 overlaps with I-84 for about 4 miles (6 km). Through this section of expressway, Routes I-84, US 7, US 6 and US 202 are concurrent. Routes 7 and 202 then leave I-84 at exit 7 and travel on their own expressway for approximately 7 miles (11 km) to just south of the New Milford line. On this section there are two exits. At Exit 11, US 202 exits the expressway and at Exit 12, Route 202 crosses back over Route 7. On southbound Route 7, the exit for Interstate 84 Eastbound is signed as exit 10. There is no exit number for I-84 West because of the concurrency. The Route 7 expressway then bypasses Brookfield to the west and terminates at an intersection with Route 202 at the Fairfield/Litchfield county line.
Route 7 is cosigned with US 202 until central New Milford, where Route 202 turns east with Route 67 while Route 7 continues north. Recent construction has also made large parts of Route 7 between the terminus of the expressway and New Milford a four-lane divided highway with at-grade intersections. North of New Milford center, Route 7 remains a two-lane road through the rest of Connecticut.
The precursor to US 7 was New England route NE-4. When US 7 was commissioned, it followed the whole route of NE-4. It entered Connecticut from the north in North Canaan (as today) and then followed Route 41 southwest to Sharon and into New York State. This alignment had US 7 follow NY 22 to a southern terminus in New York City rather than in Norwalk. This southern terminus was shifted to Norwalk around 1930, and was rerouted onto other existing state highways of the time to get from Canaan to Norwalk. From Canaan to New Milford, the road was known as State Highway 134, and from there to Danbury was State Highway 128. From Danbury to Ridgefield, the road was part of another New England route, NE-3, which was paved in 1924. From Ridgefield to Norwalk was State Highway 126.
The entire section between I-95 in Norwalk and I-84 in Danbury was originally planned to be bypassed by a freeway. Construction on the initial freeway segments in Norwalk began in 1969, but lawsuits brought on by residents within the highway's path and environmental groups halted construction north of Route 123 in 1972. With an approved environmental impact statement, construction resumed in 1986 between Route 123 and Grist Mill Road in Norwalk and from I-84 to Sleepy Hollow Road in Danbury. The Danbury section opened in 1987, while the extension of the Route 7 freeway to Grist Mill Road opened in 1992. Lack of funding and continued opposition to the freeway has prevented construction of the remainder of the proposed highway between Grist Mill Road and Danbury. Instead, from 2003 to 2008 the existing Route 7 was widened from 2 to 4 lanes from Grist Mill Road to Wolfpit Road in Wilton, and from the Route 35 intersection in Ridgefield to the freeway terminus at Sleepy Hollow Road in Danbury.
Construction on the section between I-84 and Exit 12 began in 1974 and was completed in 1976. The Brookfield bypass segment between Exit 12 and the current expressway terminus opened in November 2009, after two years of construction. The former US 7 route through Brookfield is now signed solely as US 202.
|Fairfield||Norwalk||0.00||0.00||I‑95 / Conn. Tpk. – Bridgeport, Stamford||I-95/CTTP Exit 15, southern terminus|
|1.18||1.90||US 1 – Westport, Darien|
|2.93||4.72||Route 15 / Merritt Pkwy. – Bridgeport, Stamford||CT 15/Merritt Parkway Exits 39 N-S, southbound access only|
|Wilton||6.03||9.70||Route 33 south – Westport||Begin concurrencey with CT 33|
|6.47||10.41||Route 106 – Weston, New Canaan|
|7.30||11.75||Route 33 north – Ridgefield||End concurrencey with CT 33|
|Branchville||12.56||20.21||Route 102 west – Ridgefield|
|16.88||27.17||Route 35 south – Ridgefield|
|Danbury||21.56||34.70||I‑84 west – Ridgebury||Begin overlap, I-84 Exit 3|
|25.21||40.57||US 6 / US 202 west (Lake Ave.)||Begin US 6 and 202 overlap, I-84 Exit 4|
|25.43||40.93||I‑84 / US 6 east – Newtown, Waterbury||End of I-84 and US 6 overlap, Exit 7|
|Brookfield||27.04||43.52||Route 133 north – Brookfield, Bridgewater|
|29.17||46.94||Route 25 south – Hawleyville, Newtown|
|Litchfield||New Milford||37.24||59.93||US 202 east – New Preston, Litchfield||East end of US 202 overlap|
|37.24||59.93||Route 67 south – Roxbury|
|39.93||64.26||Route 37 south – Sherman, New Fairfield|
|44.36||71.39||Route 55 west – Sherman|
|Kent||50.88||81.88||Route 341 – Warren, Macedonia|
|Cornwall||58.74||94.53||Route 45 south – Warren|
|59.91||96.42||Route 4 east – Goshen||Begin concurrencey with CT 4|
|60.12||96.75||Route 4 west – Sharon||End concurrencey with CT 4|
|64.27||103.43||Route 128 – Sharon, Goshen|
|Lime Rock||68.83||110.77||Route 112 west – Lakeville|
|Canaan||70.62||113.65||Route 126 – South Canaan, Falls Village|
|71.90||115.71||Route 63 south – Goshen|
|76.46||123.05||US 44 – Salisbury, East Canaan|
|78.29||126.00||US 7 north – Sheffield||Massachusetts border|
|1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi
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|U.S. Route 7|