The Maryland highway system consists of roads in the US state of Maryland that are maintained by the Maryland State Highway Administration (SHA). The three main systems of roads that comprise the Maryland highway system are Interstate Highways, US Highways, and Maryland state highways. Other roads in Maryland are maintained by individual cities and counties.
Interstate Highways and US Highways are assigned at the national level. Interstate Highways are numbered in a grid—even-numbered routes are east–west routes (the lowest numbers are along Mexico and the Gulf of Mexico), and odd-numbered routes are north–south routes (with the lowest numbers along the Pacific Ocean). US 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). For this reason, mainline (two-digit) Interstate Highways in Maryland all have numbers between 81 and 97 for north-south routes and between 68 and 70 for east-west routes. In addition, mainline US Highways all have numbers between 1 and 29 for north-south routes and between 40 and 50 for east-west routes. Three-digit Interstate and U.S. Highways, also known as "child routes," are branches off their main one- or two-digit "parents". The Interstate and US Highways are generally maintained by the SHA, with some toll roads maintained by the Maryland Transportation Authority (MdTA) and some roads maintained by municipalities, including most roads in the city of Baltimore. Interstate 95 (I-95) and U.S. Route 40 (US 40) are the longest examples in the state.
Maryland state highways are the other state highways maintained by the SHA. Some state highways are maintained by municipalities while the Maryland Route 200 (MD 200) toll road is maintained by the MdTA. All roads maintained by the SHA are assigned route numbers, ranging from through routes passing through multiple counties to minor service roads that are less than a mile long. Many of the shorter state highways are unsigned. Some routes consists of multiple segments with letter suffixes; these suffixes are unsigned with the exception of MD 835A. There are two geographical clusters for Maryland state highways. The first, ranging from 2 to 37, consists of longer intercounty routes, with 2 to 6 in Southern Maryland, 7 to 10 originally skipped, 12 to 21 on the Eastern Shore, and 22 to 37 running west from Central Maryland to Western Maryland. The second cluster consists of routes from 38 to 378, running across the state from Garrett County in the west to Worcester County in the east. Numbers above 378 are assigned randomly.
Maryland Route 404 (MD 404) is a major highway on Maryland's Eastern Shore in the United States. It runs 24.61 miles (39.61 km) from MD 662 in Wye Mills on the border of Queen Anne's and Talbot counties, southeast to the Delaware state line in Caroline County, where the road continues as Delaware Route 404 (DE 404). The Maryland and Delaware state highways together cross the width of the Delmarva Peninsula and serve to connect the cities west of the Chesapeake Bay by way of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge and U.S. Route 50 (US 50) with the Delaware Beaches. Along the way, MD 404 passes through mostly farmland and woodland as well as the towns of Queen Anne, Hillsboro, and Denton. The road is a two-lane undivided highway for most of its length with the exception of the bypass around Denton and a section near Hillsboro, which is a four-lane divided highway. MD 404 was designated by 1933 to run from Matapeake (where the Annapolis-Matapeake ferry across the Chesapeake Bay connected the route to Annapolis), east along present-day MD 8, US 50, and MD 662 to Wye Mills, where it followed its current routing to the Delaware border. By 1946, the route’s western terminus was moved to MD 2 north of Annapolis, where it headed east across the Chesapeake Bay on the Sandy Point-Matapeake ferry. The western terminus was cut back to Wye Mills in 1949, having been replaced with US 50 west of there. The route was realigned to bypass Queen Anne and Hillsboro in 1960 and Denton in 1987. MD 404 is being widened into a four-lane divided highway to reduce the accident rate along the road. (more...)