Spaghetti Junction

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The Gravelly Hill Interchange in Birmingham, England - the original Spaghetti Junction

"Spaghetti Junction" is a nickname sometimes given to a complicated or massively intertwined road traffic interchange that is said to resemble a plate of spaghetti. Such interchanges may incorporate a variety of interchange design elements in order to maximize connectivity.


The term was originally used to refer to the Gravelly Hill Interchange on the M6 motorway in Birmingham, United Kingdom.[1] In an article published in the Birmingham Evening Mail on 1 June 1965 the journalist Roy Smith described plans for the junction as "like a cross between a plate of spaghetti and an unsuccessful attempt at a Staffordshire knot", with the headline above the article on the newspaper's front page, written by sub-editor Alan Eaglesfield, reading "Spaghetti Junction".[2][3][4] Since then many complex interchanges around the world have acquired the nickname.

Throughout North America, this type of interchange is widely referred to as a spaghetti junction, mixing bowl, knot, or maze, often including the name of the freeway, city, or notable landmark near enough to the interchange.

Japan, somewhat colloquially, has adopted the term tentacle junction in lieu of the Western phrase.

By country[edit]





British Columbia[edit]






  • Red Cow interchange is a major road junction in west Dublin, Ireland on the M50, meeting the N7 Naas Road (to Cork and Limerick) at a free-flow grade separated junction which incorporates a light railway line. The junction was approved and built between 1972 and 1973 to help accommodate the increased flow of traffic coming into Dublin from commuter areas to the west of the city.


Intersection between A51 and Viale Forlanini
  • The interchange between the A51 motorway (Tangenziale Est Milano), and provincial roads SP2 (Strada provinciale Monza-Bellusco) and SP45 (Strada provinciale Villasanta-Vimercate) is a well-known spaghetti junction in the north-east of Milan. It is locally known as Incrocio delle Torri Bianche in reference to the nearby Torri Bianche commercial district in Vimercate, or Le Montagne Russe ('the roller coaster'). The spaghetti junction evolved around a much simple roundabout intersection which existed before the construction of the Torri Bianche district, and was referred to locally as Rondò dell'Esselunga, in reference to a nearby supermarket.


 New Zealand[edit]


Gliwice-Sosnica A1, A4 and national road 44 junction near Gliwice, the largest motorway junction in Central-Eastern Europe

 South Africa[edit]

 United Arab Emirates[edit]

  • The interchange between E 11 (Sheikh Zayed Road) And D 71 (Al Safa Street) in Dubai.

 United Kingdom[edit]

 United States[edit]


  • The interchange between I-65 and I-22 in Birmingham. The interchange, which is composed of 14 bridges, is the largest in the state. This interchange is located approximately 4 miles (6.4 km) north of the current busiest interchange in Alabama (between I-65 and I-20/I-59) which is known locally as "Malfunction Junction".
  • I-20/I-59, US 31, US 280, 25th Street, and 26th Street in Birmingham.
  • I-565 and US 231/US 431 in Huntsville.




Inland Southern California[edit]
Los Angeles County[edit]
Northern California[edit]
An aerial view of San Francisco International Airport near San Bruno, California. A spaghetti junction connects the passenger terminal roads to US 101.
Orange County[edit]
San Diego County[edit]
Ventura County[edit]




District of Columbia[edit]






Aerial photo of the Circle Interchange, looking southwest, Chicago.





The Kennedy Interchange in Louisville.











New Hampshire[edit]

New Jersey[edit]

New Mexico[edit]

New York[edit]

North Carolina[edit]





Philadelphia International Airport centered upon the spaghetti junction interchange on I-95.

Rhode Island[edit]

South Carolina[edit]




The "Spaghetti Bowl" in South Salt Lake, Utah.





Autopista Norte-Sur and Autopista Francisco Fajardo in Caracas.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Spaghetti junction". English Collins Dictionary. HarperCollins Publishers LLC. Retrieved 13 May 2013.
  2. ^ Addison, Paul (2010). No Turning Back. Oxford: OUP Oxford. p. 139. ISBN 0192192671. Retrieved 31 July 2014.
  3. ^ "Spaghetti Junction myth is untangled". Birmingham Mail. Retrieved 31 July 2014.
  4. ^ Moran, Joe (2010). On Roads. London: Profile Books. p. 45. ISBN 1846680603. Retrieved 23 June 2012.
  5. ^ Google (5 Aug 2018). "Map of interchange on Google Maps" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved 5 Aug 2018.
  6. ^ Ketumile, Kesentse (25 January 2016). "Hello spaghetti, bye bye traffic circles". Botswana Daily News. Retrieved 4 October 2017.
  7. ^ "Francistown Spaghetti Junction Opens for Public Use". The Midweek Sun. 16 December 2016. Retrieved 4 October 2017.
  8. ^ Google (13 May 2013). "Interchange of Hwys 401, 427 and 27, Ontario" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved 13 May 2013.
  9. ^ Google (13 May 2013). "Six Points Interchange, Etobicoke, Ontario" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved 13 May 2013.
  10. ^ Byers, Jim (7 January 2008). "Untangling Etobicoke's messy Six Points interchange If the late Jane Jacobs had nightmares, they looked like this". Toronto Star. Star Media Group. Retrieved 13 May 2013.
  11. ^ Google (13 May 2013). "Map of interchange on Google Maps" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved 13 May 2013.
  12. ^ Google (3 Aug 2018). "Map of interchange on Google Maps" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved 3 Aug 2018.
  13. ^ Google (3 Aug 2018). "Map of interchange on Google Maps" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved 3 Aug 2018.
  14. ^ Chartres, John (18 December 1970). "'Spaghetti Junction' opens, without warning signs". The Times. London: News Corporation. Retrieved 21 June 2012.(subscription required)
  15. ^ JJohnson, W.M. "A627(M) Rochdale–Oldham Motorway". Lancashire County Council. Archived from the original on 29 August 2006. Retrieved 28 June 2011.
  16. ^ "Spaghetti Junction tops list of worst freight bottlenecks". Retrieved 3 July 2018.
  17. ^
  18. ^ "Spaghetti Junction". 20 April 2005. Retrieved 3 July 2018.
  19. ^ Larsen, Dave (6 September 2012). "Malfunction Junction crashes down 90%". Dayton Daily News. Retrieved 21 April 2014.
  20. ^ Google (7 Aug 2018). "Map of interchange on Google Maps" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved 7 Aug 2018.
  21. ^ Cassie Cope. "Malfunction Junction a ‘Poster Child’ for Road Needs". The State. 31 October 2015. Retrieved 10 June 2016.
  22. ^ "End of the road in sight for $1 billion Grapevine project". Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
  23. ^ Google (13 May 2013). "I-95?395/495 Interchange" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved 13 May 2013.