U.S. Route 119

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U.S. Route 119 marker

U.S. Route 119
Route information
Auxiliary route of US 19
Length: 585 mi[1] (941 km)
Existed: 1926[1] – present
Major junctions
South end: US 25E in Pineville, KY
 

US 23 / US 460 / KY 80 in Pikeville, KY
I‑64 / I‑77 in Charleston, WV
US 33 from Spencer, WV to Buckhannon, WV
I‑79 near Weston, WV
US 50 in Grafton, WV
I‑68 at Morgantown, WV
US 40 in Uniontown, PA
I-70 / I-76 / Penna Turnpike in New Stanton, PA
US 30 in Greensburg, PA

US 22 near Blairsville, PA
North end: US 219 in Sandy Township, PA
Location
States: Kentucky, West Virginia, Pennsylvania
Highway system
KY 118 KY KY 120
WV 115 WV US 121

U.S. Route 119, commonly abbreviated as US 119, is a spur of US 19. It is a north–south route that was an original United States highway of 1926. It is often referred to as Corridor G east of US 23 and KY 80 in Kentucky to Interstate 64 at Charleston, West Virginia.

Route description[edit]

Kentucky[edit]

US 119 is a two and four-lane highway running from Pineville at U.S. Route 25E to the West Virginia state line at South Williamson.

From Pineville to US 23 (Country Music Highway) at Jenkins, it is part of Corridor F. During its concurrency from Jenkins north to Pikeville, where it departs eastward towards West Virginia, it is part of Corridor B. From US 23/KY 80 at Pikeville eastward towards the state line, it is part of Corridor G.

US 119 passes near Harlan and Pikeville.

West Virginia[edit]

View south along US 119 near Spencer, West Virginia

U.S. Route 119 enters West Virginia from Kentucky via Corridor G, a four-lane limited-access highway stretching from Williamson to Charleston. The earliest segment of Corridor G to open was in 1972 and was finished in 1997. Formerly, US 119 was a typical two-lane mountain highway. Old US 119 now comprises all or parts of US 52, WV 44, WV 10, WV 17, WV 85, WV 3, WV 94 and WV 61.

The US route becomes a mostly two-lane highway north of Charleston, having functionally been replaced by Interstate 79. Compared to its replacement, US 119 takes a rather winding course. A trip from the Charleston area to the Morgantown area (I-79/US 119 Exit #1 to I-68 Exit #1) is 147 miles (237 km) via I-79 and 182 miles (293 km) via US 119. The travel time is about double taking US 119, over 4 hours instead of about 2 hours.

From Charleston, US 119 heads roughly east along the Elk River to Clendenin, where it turns north for 29 miles (47 km) to Spencer. At Spencer, it begins to head east with US 33 for 81.4 miles (131.0 km). Along the way, it passes through Glenville and Weston, where it intersects parent route US 19 and replacement I-79. From I-79 to WV 20 at Buckhannon, US 33/US 119 follow Corridor H.

US 119 and US 52 north of Williamson.

At Buckhannon, US 119 again turns north — first with WV 20 then by itself as it travels to Philippi. At Philippi it joins with US 250 for 12 miles (19 km). From there, US 119 heads on its own through Grafton and towards Morgantown.

Just south of Morgantown, US 119 intersects Interstate 68's Exit #1, immediately east of its end at I-79. US 119 then enters downtown Morgantown, again meeting with US 19. It leaves town via the narrow and winding North Willey Street and congested Mileground.

Just after the Mileground, US 119 intersects with the Monongalia County Route 857 connector to I-68 Exit #7, which effectively allows through traffic to bypass Morgantown. US 119 finally turns north to enter Pennsylvania near Point Marion. The Hamilton Farm Petroglyphs are along this section. Much of this last stretch of US 119 heading towards Uniontown, Pennsylvania is already bypassed by traffic using I-68, CR 857, and PA 857. While this alternate route is longer, it has a better alignment and is faster to travel.[2]

Pennsylvania[edit]

US 119 travels through Connellsville, Greensburg, and Punxsutawney, and bypasses Uniontown and Indiana. There are numerous other boroughs and villages along its 133-mile (214 km) route in the Keystone State.

The southern entrance of US 119 is at the West Virginia state line one-half mile south of Point Marion. The northern terminus is at US 219 two miles (3 km) south of DuBois, Pennsylvania.

US 119's control cities include Morgantown, West Virginia, Uniontown, Connellsville, New Stanton (for northbound traffic only), Greensburg, Blairsville, Indiana, Punxsutawney, and DuBois.

History[edit]

Kentucky[edit]

The Burning Fork interchange northeast of Pikeville, in 2005 when 119 was under construction.

Hwy 119 in Kentucky was originally a series of two-lane roads paralleling Pine Mountain that connected Pineville to Baxter (just north of Harlan) and then headed northeast through Cumberland, Whitesburg, and Pikeville en route to West Virginia.

Starting in the 1970s, there were a number of projects that widened or replaced sections of the road. In most places, the original route has been largely abandoned, instead cutting through the mountain to provide a much wider and straighter route. Small segments of the original route are still in existence as access roads to communities that predate the expansion. In Loyall the original route is known as Hwy 413, and this parallels Hwy 119 heading northeast until it reaches the community of Rosspoint. During this stretch in Baxter, Hwy 119 also briefly combines with U.S. Route 421, which then splits off and heads north across Pine Mountain. In Rosspoint, the original route of Hwy 119 is designated as Hwy 522. Hwy 522 parallels Hwy 119 all the way to Cumberland, where the final stretch of original highway is called Kingdom Come Dr. before merging with Hwy 119 just south of the Harlan County/Letcher County border.

From this point until the base of Pine Mountain (unofficially called Whitesburg Mountain), the highway is largely unchanged from its original route. On the mountain, Hwy 119 has recently been widened in a number of places in order to make it safer for trucking traffic.

Across the mountain in Whitesburg, Hwy 119 turns northeast. South of Jenkins, Hwy 119 merges with U.S. Route 23 until Pikeville, where it splits off and heads northeast to the West Virginia border.

In 2007, a 6-mile stretch of Hwy 119 northeast of Pikeville, was expanded and improved by cutting through the mountain, once again abandoning the original route which is now known as the Zebulon Hwy. and Bent Branch Rd. Past this point, Hwy 119 follows its original route until exiting Kentucky at South Williamson.

West Virginia[edit]

The routing of US 119 south of Charleston changed drastically with the opening of Corridor G from 1972 to 1997.

The original routing southeast of the capital was WV 61 to Marmet, where it took WV 94 southwest to Racine.[3] From Racine to Danville, it followed today's WV 3 and onward to Madison. From Madison south to Logan, it followed today's WV 17.

South of Logan to Mountain View, it followed WV 44. At Mountain View, it intersected US 52 and traveled concurrently with it to the northwest, to Williamson, where it entered Kentucky.

Corridor G[edit]

U.S. Route 119 marker

Corridor G
Route information
Length: 106.5 mi[4] (171.4 km)
Existed: 1965 (Completed 2008) – present
Major junctions
South end: US 23 / US 460 / KY 80 / Corr. B near Pikeville, KY
  US 52 in Williamson, WV
WV 10 in Chapmanville, WV
North end: I‑64 in Charleston, WV
Highway system

Corridor G is a highway in Kentucky and West Virginia. It is part of the Appalachian Development Highway System, encompassing US 119 for its length. At the southern terminus of Corridor G at Corridor B (US 23/US 460/KY 80) near Pikeville, Kentucky, traffic can continue along Corridor B towards Pikeville and Jenkins, where one can pick up Corridor F (US 119) or proceed south on Corridor B (US 23) into Virginia. At the northern terminus at Interstate 64 in Charleston, West Virginia, one can pick up Interstate 77 and Interstate 79, along with the West Virginia Turnpike.

The Hatfield–McCoy Trails are an ATV and mountain biking network of trails throughout southwest West Virginia. Three trail heads branch off from various secondary routes accessible from Corridor G.

Kentucky[edit]

In 1974,[5] the first segment of Corridor G was completed from KY 292 (2nd St.) at South Williamson south to KY 199 at Huddy. This was a four-lane divided highway that contained mountable medians and jersey barriers, with a mix of state route and driveway access. This is especially evident as US 119 cuts through the center of Belfry and South Williamson. Several years later, a 2.5-mile (4.0 km) segment of four-lane US 119 along Buckley Creek opened from Corridor B/US 23/US 460/KY 80 north of Pikeville to what is now KY 1426 3.5 miles (5.6 km) northeast of Pikeville.

In 1997,[5] a section of US 119 was relocated on new alignment from KY 3154 (Meathouse Fork Rd.) at Canada east to KY 199 at Huddy. Two years later,[5] a section of US 119 was relocated on new alignment from 2.5 miles (4.0 km) east of Meta to KY 3154 at Canada. This involved extensive highwall construction at Bent Mountain and Canada Knob.

The final segment of Corridor G in Kentucky to be completed was from the KY 1426 intersection north of Pikeville east to Scott Fork 2.5 miles (4.0 km) east of Meta. This segment required the construction of three twin steel-box girder bridges at Johns Creek (KY 194) near Bevins Branch, Winn Branch (Winn Branch Road), and Raccoon Creek (KY 1441).[6] This also includes a modified diamond interchange at what will be old US 119 1/2-mile east of KY 1426 at Zebulon.

On June 30, 2006, the "Pinson Family Bridge" was dedicated. It crosses Raccoon Creek and KY 1441. This twin steel-box girder bridge is more than 1,200 ft (370 m). long and is the only examples of its kind in Kentucky.[7] The girders were chosen because of the curvature within the bridge structure; each girder is completely hollow and is features a 10 ft (3.0 m). clearance on the interior.

On December 6, 2006, a segment of Corridor G opened from the KY 1426 intersection north of Pikeville east to the KY 194 (Johns Creek) interchange.[8] The last segment to open is from KY 194 north to Scott Fork. That segment was opened in March 2008.

West Virginia[edit]

The first segments of Corridor G to open was in 1972.[9] During that year, a Mingo County segment from Myrtle and Belo (MP 13) to the Logan County line near Holden opened. Segments of this were opened originally as a "super-two" since WV 65 was being destroyed; it was critical that the old roadway be removed before the highway was expanded to four-lanes.

Corridor G north of Logan, West Virginia.

In 1973, a lengthy segment opened to traffic from Godby Heights south of Chapmanville (MP 13) to MP 4 in Boone County.[9] This was followed a year later by a segment near Madison from MP 9.37 to MP 13 in Boone County. In 1975, the segment from MP 4 to MP 9.37 in Boone County was opened to traffic. At this time, the connection to Interstate 64 in Charleston also opened to traffic from Oakwood Road. This included the flyover ramp from US 119 to the Interstate 64 interchange.

In 1977, a Mingo County segment from Nolan (MP 7.45) at US 52 to Myrtle (MP 13) opened to traffic.[9]

The next segment to open would come in 1982,[9] when a Boone, Lincoln, and Kanawha County segment opened to traffic from Julian (MP 17) to the WV 601 interchange in South Charleston (MP 11). The segment between the WV 601 interchange to Oakwood Road in Charleston would be completed in 1986;[9] it formerly utilized Oakhurst and Oakwood Roads.

In 1989,[9] a segment from MP 13 to Julian (MP 17) in Boone County opened. In 1992, a new Tug Fork crossing at Williamson was completed. Formerly, Corridor G traffic from Kentucky had to cross into downtown Williamson and pick up US 119 into West Virginia.

The last segment of Corridor G in West Virginia to be completed was from the Tug Fork crossing at Williamson north to US 52 near Nolan. This nine-mile (14 km) segment was completed in 1997.[9]

Major intersections[edit]

State County Location mi km Destinations Notes
Kentucky Pike Pikeville US 23 / US 119 south / US 460 / KY 80 – Pikeville, Prestonsburg
KY 1426 west south end of KY 1426 overlap
KY 1426 east – Zebulon, Burning Fork interchange; north end of KY 1426 overlap
To KY 194 – Bent Branch, Phelps interchange
KY 1426 – Meta interchange
KY 881 north – Varney, Heenon
KY 3220 – Sidney, Canada interchange
KY 3220 – Canada, Sidney interchange
Huddy KY 199 south – Stone, McAndrews
KY 319 east – Hardy, Toler
KY 308 west
KY 292 south south end of KY 292 overlap
2nd Avenue (KY 1506 north)
South Williamson KY 292 north – Warfield, KY, Williamson, WV, Coal House north end of KY 292 overlap; south end of US 52 Truck overlap (northbound only)
West Virginia Mingo Williamson US 52 south – Williamson, Welch, West Williamson north end of US 52 Truck overlap (northbound only); south end of US 52 overlap
Kentucky Pike To KY 292
West Virginia Mingo CR 14 – Chattaroy
Kentucky Pike KY 292 interchange
West Virginia Mingo Nolan CR 52/19 (Nolan Street) to Nolan Toll Bridge
US 52 north – Huntington north end of US 52 overlap
WV 65 north – Naugatuck south end of WV 65 overlap
Belo WV 65 south – Delbarton, Matewan north end of WV 65 overlap
Logan Holden CR 18 (Holden Road) former US 119 north
Holden Copperas Fork Road - Holden interchange
Whitman Junction (CR 219/1)
WV 73 to WV 10 – Logan interchange
Chapmanville WV 10 – Chapmanville interchange
Boone Danville CR 85/8 (Riverside Drive) – Danville, Madison
WV 85 south / Mountaineer Drive – Danville, Madison
Rock Creek WV 3 east / CR 119/65 (Skeens Drive) – Racine south end of WV 3 overlap
Julian WV 3 west – Julian, Hamlin north end of WV 3 overlap
Lincoln Priestley To WV 214 (Yeager Highway via CR 119/1) / CR 119/6 (Starlight Road) – Yawkey, Hamlin, Alum Creek
Kanawha CR 214/10 (Childress Road) / Eagle Drive – Alum Creek to WV 214
Ruth CR 13/14 (Willow Drive) / CR 11/2 (Ruth Road) (via WV 214)
Charleston CR 214/8 (Green Road) / Terry Road (via WV 214)
WV 601 (WV 214) / Davis Creek Road (CR 20) – South Charleston interchange
CR 13/10 (Oakwood Road) – Kanawha State Forest
To WV 61 (MacCorkle Avenue) interchange
I‑64 / US 119 north to I‑77 / I‑79 – Huntington, Charleston, Beckley I-64 exit 58A
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b US Highways from US 1 to US 830 Archived May 13, 2007, at the Wayback Machine. Robert V. Droz
  2. ^ Google (2008-10-28). "US 219 in Pennsylvania" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved 2008-10-28. 
  3. ^ Rand McNally. Atlas. 1970.
  4. ^ https://www.arc.gov/images/programs/transp/ADHSFY2015StatusReport.pdf
  5. ^ a b c Bridge stamp listings. Kentucky Transportation Cabinet. 2005.
  6. ^ Jenior, Pete. "Notes on yesterday's Pikeville Meet and Trip." Newsgroup posting. [1].
  7. ^ Elkins, H.B. "New US 119 in Kentucky." Newsgroup posting. [2].
  8. ^ "New sections of US 119 open this Wednesday." Kentucky Transportation Cabinet. 8 Dec. 2006 [3].
  9. ^ a b c d e f g Release Date Report. West Virginia Department of Transportation. August 2003.

External links[edit]

Browse numbered routes
KY 118 list KY 120
WV 115 list US 121
PA 118 PA PA 120