Interstate 95 in Maine

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Interstate 95 marker

Interstate 95
Maine Turnpike in green, the rest of I-95 in red
Route information
Maintained by MaineDOT and Maine Turnpike Authority
Length: 303.20 mi[2] (487.95 km)
Maine Turnpike: 101.43 miles (163.24 km)[1]
Existed: 1960 – present
Major junctions
South end: I‑95 in Portsmouth, NH
  I‑195 in Saco
I‑295 near Portland
I‑495 in Portland
US 202 / SR 4 / SR 100 in Gray and Auburn
I‑295 near Gardiner
US 202 / SR 11 / SR 17 / SR 100 in Augusta
US 201 in Fairfield
I‑395 / SR 15 in Bangor
US 2 / SR 100 in Bangor
US 1 in Houlton
North end: NB 95.pngUS 2.svg Route 95 / US 2 at the Houlton–Woodstock Border Crossing
Location
Counties: York, Cumberland, Androscoggin, Kennebec, Somerset, Waldo, Penobscot, Aroostook
Highway system
SR 94 SR 95

In the U.S. state of Maine, Interstate 95 (I-95) is a 303-mile-long (488 km) highway running from the New Hampshire state line near Kittery, to the Canadian border near Houlton. It is the only two-digit Interstate Highway in Maine. In 2004, the highway's route between Portland and Gardiner was changed so that it encompasses the entire Maine Turnpike (including the former I-495 between Falmouth and Gardiner), which runs from Kittery to Augusta.

Route description[edit]

Northbound in Kittery, Maine

I-95 enters Maine from New Hampshire on the Piscataqua River Bridge, which connects Portsmouth, New Hampshire with Kittery. At mile 2 (Spruce Creek) in Kittery, the highway becomes the Maine Turnpike. The highway runs in a general northeasterly direction, parallel with U.S. 1, at this point. I-95 bypasses the Biddeford/Saco area, with a spur route (Interstate 195) connecting to Old Orchard Beach.

At Scarborough, Interstate 95 meets Interstate 295. The highway turns north, serving the Portland International Jetport and bypassing Portland to the west. At Falmouth, the highway meets unsigned Interstate 495, also called the Falmouth Spur. Until January 2004, I-95 followed the Falmouth Spur and I-295 between Falmouth and Gardiner.

The highway continues north along the Maine Turnpike (which was I-495 prior to 2004) through Gray to Auburn and Lewiston, which the Turnpike bypasses to the south. The highway then runs in an easterly direction to meet Interstate 295 at Gardiner. From there, I-95 parallels the Kennebec River past Augusta and Waterville, where a new interchange is being planned at Trafton Road. The highway then crosses the river at Fairfield and then turns northeast along the Sebasticook River past Pittsfield to Newport.

I-95 then continues east alongside U.S. Route 2 from Newport to Bangor, where Interstate 395 connects to the city of Brewer. The highway runs along the northern edge of Bangor's center, then turns northeast, following the Penobscot River past Orono and Old Town (Prior to the early 1980s, I-95 was a super two highway north of Old Town).

The highway continues north, still running near the river, towards Howland. Near Lincoln, Interstate 95 runs north through uninhabited forest land, crossing the Penobscot River at Medway. The highway goes northeast and east, passing a series of small Aroostook County farming towns before reaching Houlton, where it connects to New Brunswick Route 95 and U.S. Route 2 at the international border. North of Bangor, traffic levels drop noticeably, with AADT averaging only about 5,000 in northern Penobscot County and going down to as low as 2,000–4,000 in Houlton.[3]

Speed limits[edit]

The Maine Turnpike had a posted speed limit of 70 mph (110 km/h) in the early 1970s, but as Maine then had no law against traveling less than 10 mph (16 km/h) over the posted speed, the de facto speed limit was 79 mph (127 km/h). In 1974, as part of a federal mandate, the speed limit was reduced to 55 mph (89 km/h), with a new law including a "less than 10 over" violation. In 1987, Congress allowed states to post 65 mph (105 km/h) on rural interstate highways. Following the relaxation, Maine increased its speed limit. In May 2011, a bill was introduced to raise the speed limit from Old Town to Houlton from 65 mph (105 km/h) to 75 mph (121 km/h). It passed, with Maine the first state east of the Mississippi River since the 1970s to establish a 75 mph (121 km/h) speed limit.[4][5]

A further law passed in 2013 by the Maine Legislature allowed the Maine Department of Transportation and the Turnpike Authority to change speed limits with the approval of the Maine State Police. Per that law, Maine DOT increased the 65 mph (105 km/h) limit to 70 mph (110 km/h) on several sections of Interstate 95 on May 27, 2014. These areas included the section from mile marker 114 just outside Augusta to mile 126 just before Waterville. In addition, the section from Fairfield (just north of Waterville) to Bangor also saw an increase to 70 mph (110 km/h).[6] Speed limits on sections controlled by the Turnpike Authority increased on August 11, 2014. The sections from mile marker 2.1 in Kittery to mile marker 44.1 in Scarborough and the section from mile marker 52.3 in Falmouth to mile marker 109 in Augusta increased from 65 mph (105 km/h) to 70 mph (110 km/h). The section from mile marker 44.1 in Scarborough to mile marker 52.3 in Falmouth increased from 55 mph (89 km/h) to 60 mph (97 km/h). The Falmouth Spur, outside the toll plaza area, increased from 50 mph (80 km/h) to 60 mph (97 km/h).[7]

Exit list[edit]

Note: toll rates listed in this exit list are for Class 1 vehicles paying cash. They do not reflect lower rates for drivers using E-ZPass tags or higher rates for other vehicle classes.

County Location[8] mi[8] km Exit Destinations Notes
York Kittery 0.00 0.00 I‑95 south – Portsmouth, Boston Continuation from New Hampshire over the Piscataqua River
0.62 1.00 1 To SR 103 / Dennett Road – Eliot, Kittery Foreside Navy Yard Northbound exit and southbound entrance
1.24 2.00 2
US 1 / SR 236 / US 1 Byp. – Kittery, South Berwick
Southbound signage

US 1 south / SR 236 south / US 1 Byp. south – Kittery Center, Memorial Circle
Northbound signage
3 US 1 north (Coastal Route) / SR 236 north – Kittery, South Berwick
York 6.79 10.93 7 To SR 91 / US 1 – The Yorks, Ogunquit, The Berwicks The Yorks only appears on northbound signage; The Berwicks only appears on southbound signage
7.20 11.59 Maine Turnpike York Toll Barrier—Cars $3
Wells 19.00 30.58 19 SR 9 / SR 109 – Wells, Sanford Northbound entrance toll $1.50
Kennebunk 25.01 40.25 25 SR 35 – Kennebunk, Kennebunkport Entrance toll $1
Biddeford 31.09 50.03 32 SR 111 – Biddeford Entrance toll $1
BiddefordSaco line 32.53 52.35 Saco River
Saco 35.20 56.65 36 I‑195 east – Saco, Old Orchard Beach Entrance toll $1
Cumberland Scarborough 41.90 67.43 42 To US 1 – Scarborough Entrance toll $1
43.51 70.02 44 I‑295 north – South Portland, Downtown Portland Northbound exit and southbound entrance; $1 toll
South Portland 44.24 71.20 45 To I‑295 / US 1 / SR 114 / Maine Mall Road / Payne Road Entrance toll $1; I-295 only appears on southbound signage
Portland 45.64 73.45 46 To SR 22 (Congress Street) / SR 9 – Jetport Entrance toll $1
46.02 74.06 Stroudwater River
46.65 75.08 47 SR 25 (Rand Road / Westbrook Arterial) Entrance toll $1
47.83 76.97 48 To SR 25 / US 302 / Riverside Street / Larrabee Road Entrance toll $1
50.87 81.87 52 To I‑295 / US 1 – Falmouth, Freeport $1 toll on the Falmouth Spur
PortlandFalmouth line 51.03 82.12 Presumpscot River
Falmouth 51.62 83.07 53 SR 26 / SR 100 – West Falmouth Entrance toll $1
Gray 62.33 100.31 63 US 202 / SR 115 / SR 4 to SR 26 – Gray, New Gloucester Southbound entrance toll $1.50
New Gloucester 66.03 106.26 Maine Turnpike New Gloucester Toll Barrier—Cars $2.25
Androscoggin Auburn 74.17 119.37 75 US 202 / SR 4 / SR 100 – Auburn
AuburnLewiston line 77.78 125.17 Androscoggin River
Lewiston 79.11 127.32 80 To SR 196 – Lewiston
Sabattus 84.91 136.65 86 SR 9 – Sabattus, Lisbon
Kennebec LitchfieldWest Gardiner line 97.79 157.38 Cobbosseecontee Stream
West Gardiner 98.74 158.91 Maine Turnpike West Gardiner Toll Barrier—Cars $1.75
100.50 161.74 102 SR 9 / SR 126 to I‑295 south – Gardiner, Litchfield Northbound exit and southbound entrance
101.25 162.95 103 I‑295 south / SR 9 / SR 126 – Gardiner, Brunswick Southbound exit and northbound entrance; $1 toll
Augusta 108.09 173.95 109A US 202 east / SR 11 east / SR 17 east / SR 100 east – Augusta, Airport Signed as Exit 109 northbound; Airport only appears on southbound signage
109B US 202 west / SR 11 west / SR 17 west / SR 100 west – Winthrop
110.57 177.95 112 SR 8 / SR 11 / SR 27 – Augusta, Belgrade Signed as Exits 112A (south) and 112B (north) northbound
111.43 179.33 113 SR 3 – Augusta, Belfast
Sidney 119.02 191.54 120 Lyons Road – Sidney
Waterville 122.92 197.82 124 Trafton Road Opened July 14, 2017
125.72 202.33 127 SR 11 / SR 137 – Waterville, Oakland
128.79 207.27 130 SR 104 (Main Street) – Waterville, Winslow Winslow only appears on southbound signage
Somerset Fairfield 130.84 210.57 132 SR 139 – Fairfield, Benton
131.87 212.22 133 US 201 – Fairfield, Skowhegan
SomersetKennebec
county line
FairfieldBenton line 132.15 212.67 Kennebec River
Kennebec Clinton 136.46 219.61 138 Hinckley Road – Clinton, Burnham
Waldo
No major junctions
Somerset Pittsfield 148.34 238.73 150 Somerset Avenue – Pittsfield, Hartland, Burnham Hartland only appears on northbound signage; Burnham only appears on southbound signage
149.65 240.84 Sebasticook River
Palmyra 155.27 249.88 157 SR 11 / SR 100 to SR 7 / US 2 – Newport, Dexter, Skowhegan SR 7 and Dexter only appear on northbound signage; US 2 and Skowhegan only appears on southbound signage
Penobscot Newport 157.18 252.96 159 Ridge Road – Newport, Plymouth Southbound exit and northbound entrance
Plymouth 159.45 256.61 161 SR 7 – East Newport, Plymouth
Etna 165.42 266.22 167 SR 69 / SR 143 – Etna, Dixmont
Newburgh 172.20 277.13 174 SR 69 – Carmel, Winterport
Hampden 175.04 281.70 Souadabscook Stream
175.54 282.50
176.31 283.74
178.12 286.66 180 Cold Brook Road – Hermon, Hampden
Bangor 180.89 291.11 182A I‑395 / SR 15 south to US 1A / SR 9 – Bangor, Brewer Southern end of concurrency with SR 15; Exit 1 on I-395
182B To US 2 west / SR 100 west – Hermon
181.76 292.51 183 US 2 / SR 100 (Hammond Street) – Airport
182.61 293.88 184 SR 222 (Union Street) / Ohio Street – Airport Ohio Street only appears on southbound signage
183.08 294.64 Kenduskeag Stream
183.82 295.83 185
SR 15 north (Broadway) / SR 15 Bus. – Bangor, Brewer
Northern end of concurrency with SR 15; SR 15 Bus., Bangor, and Brewster only appear on southbound signage
184.95 297.65 186 Stillwater Avenue No northbound entrance or exits to southbound Stillwater Avenue; access to Bangor Mall
185.73 298.90 187 Hogan Road – Bangor, Veazie
Orono 189.20 304.49 191 Kelly Road – Orono, Veazie Orono only appears on northbound signage; Veazie only appears on southbound signage
191.37 307.98 193 Stillwater Avenue – Stillwater, Old Town, Orono Old Town only appears on northbound signage; Orono only appears on southbound signage
Old Town 194.59 313.16 Pushaw Stream
195.38 314.43 197 SR 43 – Old Town, Hudson
197.86 318.42 199 SR 16 – Alton, Lagrange, Milo Northbound exit and southbound entrance
AltonArgyle line 199.84 321.61 Birch Stream
Howland 214.97 345.96 217 SR 6 / SR 155 – Howland, Lagrange
217.01 349.24 Piscataquis River
225.74 363.29 227 To US 2 / SR 6 / SR 116 – Lincoln, Mattawamkeag Mattawamkeag only appears on northbound signage
Medway 242.23 389.83 Penobscot River
242.66 390.52 244 SR 157 – Medway, Millinocket, Mattawamkeag Medway only appears on northbound signage; Mattawamkeag only appears on southbound signage
245.15 394.53 Salmon Stream
PenobscotAroostook
county line
HerseytownBenedicta line 257.18 413.89 259 Benedicta Northbound exit and southbound entrance
Penobscot
No major junctions
Aroostook Sherman 262.43 422.34 264 SR 158 to SR 11 – Sherman, Patten Patten only appears on northbound signage
Island Falls 274.10 441.12 276 SR 159 – Island Falls, Patten Patten only appears on southbound signage
274.71 442.10 Fish Stream
275.44 443.28 West Branch Mattawamkeag River
Oakfield 283.95 456.97 286 Oakfield Road – Oakfield, Smyrna Mills
284.16 457.31 East Branch Mattawamkeag River
Smyrna 289.42 465.78 291 US 2 – Smyrna
Houlton 300.05 482.88 302 US 1 – Houlton, Presque Isle
300.92 484.28 Meduxnekeag River
302.93 487.52 305 US 2 – Houlton International Airport, Houlton Industrial Park Houlton International Airport only appears on northbound signage; eastern terminus of US 2
303.12 487.82 Route 95 east – Woodstock Continuation beyond Houlton–Woodstock Border Crossing into New Brunswick
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

Maine Turnpike[edit]

Maine Turnpike shield

History[edit]

Early postcard showing entrance at Kittery

The Maine Turnpike Authority was created by the Maine Legislature in 1941 to connect Kittery and Fort Kent. In 1947, the first section of highway, designated the Maine Turnpike, opened between Kittery and Portland. In 1953, the Turnpike Authority began construction on an extension to the state capital at Augusta using the former right-of-way of the Portland–Lewiston Interurban railway from Portland through Falmouth.[9] The original turnpike was the largest construction project in the state's history until the construction of the extension, which opened to the public on December 13, 1955.[10]

The Maine Turnpike was the first highway funded using revenue bonds. It remains self-financed and does not receive funding from the state or federal government. When the first section opened in 1947, it was only the second superhighway in the United States following the October 1940 opening of the Pennsylvania Turnpike. For these reasons, the Maine Turnpike was named a National Historic Civil Engineering Landmark by the American Society of Civil Engineers in 1999[11] .

In 1956, one year after the Portland-Augusta extension opened, Congress created the Interstate Highway System. The remaining sections to be built—from Augusta to Fort Kent—would be publicly funded freeways instead of toll roads under the Maine Turnpike Authority. Today this highway, which ends at Houlton instead of Fort Kent, is signed as Interstate 95 throughout and the Maine Turnpike between the New Hampshire line at Kittery and the junction with US 202 near Augusta.

The former head of the Maine Turnpike Authority served 19 months in prison for stealing as much as $230,000 from the toll revenue generated by the Maine Turnpike Authority for his personal use from 2003 to 2010.[12]

Tolls[edit]

Early postcard of tollbooths at Kittery

The segment of Interstate 95 from Kittery to Augusta runs along the Maine Turnpike. This is a toll road for all of its length except for south of York and the section between Auburn and Sabattus. Flat-fee tolls are paid upon entering the turnpike and at toll barriers in York, New Gloucester, and West Gardiner. The turnpike joined the E-ZPass electronic toll collection network in 2005, replacing the former Maine-only system designated Transpass that was implemented in 1997.[13]

The tollbooths on the Maine Turnpike were not supposed to be permanent. Toll collections were to stop once the Maine Turnpike Authority paid off the debt from the road's construction. In the 1980s the bonds were going to be paid off but the Maine Legislature authorized the Maine Turnpike Authority in 1982 to continue as a quasi-governmental agency and to continue to collect tolls in order to fund the maintenance of the section of highway controlled by the MTA.[14]

Service areas[edit]

There are five service areas on the turnpike. Two are accessible northbound, two southbound, and one is accessible from both directions. All are open 24 hours and provide food and fuel services. They also have ATMs. Some have small gift shops. The plazas are at the following locations:

  • Kennebunk plazas: Northbound and southbound at MP 25—food, fuel, gift shop. The original plazas, which included Howard Johnson's restaurants, opened in 1947 and incorporated a pedestrian tunnel under the highway to connect the two. These original plazas were replaced in 1972 and the tunnel was sealed. These 1972 plazas were replaced during the winter of 2006–2007. Both service plazas open with "food court layout featuring Starbucks coffee, Burger King, Hershey’s Ice Cream, a Z-Market convenience store and a Popeye’s Chicken on the northbound side and Sbarros Pizza on the southbound side."[15]
  • Gray plaza (NB)/Cumberland plaza (SB): Northbound and Southbound at MP 58—food and fuel. Both plazas were rebuilt in the mid-2000s with a Starbucks and a Z-Market convenience store. On March 21, 2016, both the Gray and Cumberland service plazas closed for a period of approximately 9 weeks to remove the Starbucks restaurants and replace them with a drive-thru Burger King at each plaza. [16]
  • West Gardiner plaza: At the I-95/I-295/ME 126 intersection, , accessible by both directions of I-95 and I-295. Food court, fuel, gift shop, information.

There is a Rest Area / Tourist Welcome Center located on the turnpike Northbound at MP 3 in Kittery.

There are weigh stations located on the turnpike Northbound and Southbound in York at MP 4 (SB) and MP 6 (NB).

There are ramps to/from the northbound turnpike to the Saco Ramada Hotel and Conference Center in Saco at MP 35 (Old MP 33 before the southern extension).[17] The ramps are from the original exit 5 which was replaced when I-195 was opened just to the north. The hotel was built on the site of the old toll plaza. Ramps connecting the hotel to/from the southbound turnpike were removed as part of the widening project in the early 2000s when hotel ownership opted not to pay nearly $1 million to build a new bridge.

Previous to the West Gardiner rest area's opening, which serves both directions of the turnpike, there were rest areas located in Lewiston (Southbound at MP 83) and Litchfield (Northbound at MP 98).

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Welcome to the Maine Turnpike Authority". Maineturnpike.com. Retrieved September 19, 2011. 
  2. ^ Maine State Route Log (via floodgap.com)
  3. ^ "Interstate 95 Annual Average Daily Traffic". Interstate-Guide. Retrieved September 19, 2011. 
  4. ^ Miller, Kevin (May 12, 2011). "Bill would boost speed limit to 75 mph on northern highway". Bangor Daily News. Retrieved May 22, 2011. 
  5. ^ "Lawmakers OK 75-mph speed limit between Old Town, Houlton, Bangor Daily News, June 29, 2011". The Bangor Daily News. Retrieved October 4, 2014. 
  6. ^ Koenig, Paul (May 27, 2014). "Speed limit increasing by 5 mph on parts of I-295, I-95". Kennebec Journal. Retrieved May 27, 2014. 
  7. ^ "Turnpike News: Travel Advisories". Turnpike Traveler Services. Maine Turnpike Authority. Retrieved October 4, 2014. 
  8. ^ a b Maine Department of Transportation. MaineDOT Public Map Viewer (Map). Maine Department of Transportation. Retrieved April 7, 2017. 
  9. ^ Cummings, Osmond Richard. "Portland-Lewiston Interurban: a history of the finest electric interurban railway to run in the State of Maine". Bangor Public Library. Retrieved September 5, 2014. 
  10. ^ "Maine Turnpike Authority History". 
  11. ^ "Maine Turnpike". Archived from the original on June 2, 2013. 
  12. ^ "Paul Violette, 61, served less than 20 months for stealing as much as $230,000 in public funds". 
  13. ^ "E-ZPass Information Frequently Asked Questions". 
  14. ^ "Keep the change: Toll highways aren't going away". 
  15. ^ Turnpike Press Release Archived October 15, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
  16. ^ Turnpike Press Release
  17. ^ "Ramada Saco / Old Orchard Beach Area (official site)". Retrieved October 4, 2014. 

External links[edit]

Route map: Google

KML is from Wikidata


Interstate 95
Previous state:
New Hampshire
Maine Next state:
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