Portal:New York Roads/Selected article/February 2012

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New York State Route 5 (NY 5) is a state highway that extends for 370.87 miles (596.86 km) across the state of New York in the United States. It begins at the Pennsylvania state line in the Chautauqua County town of Ripley and passes through Buffalo, Syracuse, Utica, Schenectady, and several other smaller cities and communities on its way to downtown Albany in Albany County, where it terminates at U.S. Route 9 (US 9), here routed along the service roads for Interstate 787 (I-787). Prior to the construction of the New York State Thruway, it was one of two main east–west highways traversing upstate New York, the other being US 20. West of New York, NY 5 continues as Pennsylvania Route 5 (PA 5) to Erie.

NY 5 overlaps with US 20 twice along its routing. The second, a 68-mile (109 km) overlap through western and central New York, is the second-longest concurrency in the state, stretching from Avon east to the city of Auburn in Cayuga County. The concurrency is known locally as "Routes 5 and 20". As the route proceeds across the state, it also directly or indirectly meets every major north–south highway in upstate New York, including all three north–south Interstate Highways (I-390 in Avon, I-81 in Syracuse via US 11, and I-87 in Albany).

NY 5 was assigned in 1924 as a true cross-state highway, extending from the Pennsylvania state line in the west to the Massachusetts state line in the east, mostly by way of modern US 20. At the time, modern NY 5 between Buffalo and Albany was designated as NY 5A. By 1926, NY 5 was moved onto the routing of NY 5A while the old routing of NY 5 became NY 7. It was truncated in 1927 to Athol Springs in the west and Albany in the east following the assignment of US 20, and again in 1930 to downtown Buffalo. NY 5 was reextended to the Pennsylvania state line ca. 1932 by way of its old routing to Athol Springs, an old alignment of US 20, and a lakeside spur route of US 20 that had been assigned in 1930. Only local realignments have occurred since.

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