U.S. Route 19 in North Carolina

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U.S. Highway 19 marker

U.S. Highway 19

US 19 highlighted in red
Route information
Maintained by NCDOT
Length145 mi[1] (233 km)
Existed1927–present
Tourist
routes
Mountain Waters Scenic Byway
Nantahala Byway
Mount Mitchell Scenic Drive
Major junctions
South end US 19 / US 129 / SR 11 at the Georgia line at Bellview
Major intersections I-40 / US 74 in Asheville
I-26 / I-240 in Asheville
North end US 19E / US 19W at Cane River
Location
CountryUnited States
StateNorth Carolina
CountiesCherokee, Graham, Swain, Jackson, Haywood, Buncombe, Madison, Yancey
Highway system
NC 18 US 19E

U.S. Route 19 (US 19) traverses 145 miles (233 km) across Western North Carolina; from the Georgia state line, at the community of Bellview, to Cane River, where US 19 splits into US 19E and US 19W, which take separate routes into Tennessee.

Route description[edit]

US 19/US 19E switch at Cane River

US 19 begins at the Georgia state line overlapped with US 129 and continues toward Cherokee as Lee Highway. ; 4 miles (6.4 km) into North Carolina, it joins with US 64/US 74 in Ranger. From Ranger to Andrews, the highway is a four-lane expressway that bypasses all the towns and communities along its route. After Andrews, US 19 reverts to two-lane through the Nantahala Gorge, which both scenic and somewhat curvy 21 miles (34 km) drive till Almond.

At the start of the Great Smoky Mountains Expressway, US 19 exits off towards the towns of Bryson City and Cherokee. At Cherokee, travelers may go north on US 441 to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park or to the Blue Ridge Parkway before traveling through the rest of the Qualla Boundary.

The highway expands back into a four-lane expressway in Maggie Valley, where it then merges with the Great Smoky Mountains Expressway for 3 miles (4.8 km) before exiting back off towards Clyde. From here, US 19 parallels with I-40 to Asheville. US 19 joins other highways in Asheville crossing over the French Broad River, then follows I-26 to Mars Hill, North Carolina. At exit 9, US 19 splits from I-26/US 23; after 10 miles (16 km), US 19 splits into US 19E and US 19W at Cane River. US 19 travels a total of 145 miles (233 km) from the Georgia state line to Cane River.[1]

US 19 also make up part of Corridor A, Corridor B and Corridor K in the Appalachian Development Highway System (ADHS). Corridor A connects I-285, in Sandy Springs, Georgia, to I-40, near Clyde, North Carolina, it overlaps 2.5 miles (4.0 km) of US 19. Corridor B connects I-40, in Asheville, North Carolina, with US 23, near Lucasville, Ohio, it overlaps 19 miles (31 km) of US 19. Corridor K connects I-75, in Cleveland, Tennessee, with US 23, in Dillsboro, North Carolina, overlapping 49 miles (79 km) of US 19. ADHS provides additional funds, as authorized by the U.S. Congress, which have enabled US 19 to benefit from the successive improvements along its routing through each corridor. The white-on-blue banner "Appalachian Highway" is used to mark the ADHS corridor.[2]

Dedicated and memorial names[edit]

US 19 in North Carolina has three dedicated or memorialized sections of highway.

Scenic byways[edit]

US 19 is part of two scenic byways in the state (indicated by a Scenic Byways sign).[4]

Nantahala Byway is an 43-mile (69 km) byway from Marble to Whittier; it traverses along the Nantahala River and Tuckasegee River. US 19 overlaps almost the entire route, except south and east of Bryson City. This byway also connects to the Indian Lakes Scenic Byway (at Topton and Almond via US 129 and NC 28).[4]

Mount Mitchell Scenic Drive is an 52-mile (84 km) byway from Interstate 26, through Burnsville, to the summit of Mount Mitchell State Park. It is known for its vistas in and around the Black Mountains. US 19 overlaps from Interstate 26 to Micaville.[4]

History[edit]

Established in 1927, US 19 traversed from the Georgia state line (at Bellview) to the Tennessee state line (at Elk Park), roughly similar to the route seen today. In 1930, US 19 was truncated at Cane River, where it was split into US 19E and US 19W; US 19E follows the original US 19 routing north. In 1932, it was rerouted in Asheville from Haywood Road to Clingman Avenue, to Hilliard Avenue to Biltmore Avenue towards Broadway Street. In 1937, US 19 was rerouted south of Almond to its current alignment today; while it was rerouted through downtown Asheville again: from Haywood Road to Clingman Avenue to Patton Avenue to College Avenue to Biltmore Avenue towards Broadway Street.[5][unreliable source]

In the 1940s, additional construction work on US 19 was assured by a compromise made with the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians in return for right-of-way through the Qualla Boundary for the Blue Ridge Parkway.

In 1947, US 19 was rerouted from Ela, traversing through Dillsboro, Sylva, and Waynesville, to Lake Junaluska. The old route, through Cherokee and Maggie Valley became US 19A. In 1948, it was switched, having US 19 back along the original route and US 19A going south to Lake Junaluska.[5]

In 1949, US 19 was moved onto the Smokey Park Highway/Patton Avenue as a bypass in West Asheville. The old alignment became US 19A (today's US 19 Business). In 1952, US 19 was rerouted off Martins Creek Road and onto Blairsville Highway, near Ranger. In 1954, US 19 was realigned to its current route from Lake Junaluska to Clyde and Canton; .5 miles (0.80 km) of the old route was replaced by NC 209. Between 1955-57, US 19 was split onto one-way streets in downtown Asheville: Northbound used Patton, to Market, to Woodfin, to Broadway; southbound used Broadway to College, to Patton. In 1961, US 19 removed from downtown Asheville and put on the East-West Expressway, north at Marrimon Avenue. Between 1963-68, US 19 was split onto one-way streets in downtown Canton (Park Street and Main Street). In 1961, US 19 was moved onto new freeway west of Weaverville; the old route became US 19 Business.[5]

In 1973, US 19 was removed from Marrimon Avenue to its current alignment north of Asheville. In 1975, the freeway US 19 traversed was extended from Weaverville to Mars Hill. In 1979, US 19 bypassed Andrews; US 19 Business replaced the old route. In 1980, US 19 bypassed Murphy; US 19 Business replaced the old route. In 1984, US 19 was realigned in Yancey County to its current routing, US 19W was extended .4 miles (0.64 km) south.[5]

In 1982, NCDOT submitted a request to AASHTO to swap US 19 and US 19A between Bryson City and Lake Junaluska; opposition by businesses in the resort town of Maggie Valley, who opposed losing US 19, prevented this.[6][7] In 1986, US 74 was extended west from Asheville to Chattanooga, Tennessee, which overlapped nearly all of the Great Smoky Mountains Expressway, via US 19 and US 19 Bypass; the following year, US 19 Bypass was decommissioned in favor of US 74.[8][9][10][11][12]

On November 2, 2012, US 19/US 19E was widened from I-26 to Jacks Creek Road, just west of Burnsville. At $107.9 million, the 13.6 miles (21.9 km) two-lane mountain road was upgraded to a four-lane highway, and the first for Yancey County. Governor Bev Perdue was on hand at the ribbon cutting ceremony opening the highway.[13][14]

Future[edit]

US 19/74, from Andrews to Almond, is to be realigned onto a new multi-lane highway west of the Nantahala Gorge. The project is broken into several sections, all subject to reprioritization.[15]

US 19/23, from Canton to Candler, is to be widened to a multi-lane highway and its bridge replaced over the Pigeon River. This project is currently funded.[16][17]

US 19, in concurrency with Interstate 26 and US 23, is planned to be realigned onto a new interchange at Interstate 240 and freeway improvements north from it. Right-of-way purchases are to begin in 2023, however the project is unfunded.[18][19]

Two bridges over Richland Creek are planned to be replaced in Lake Junaluska, and the interchange with US 23/74 is to be redesigned to make it safer.[20]

Junction list[edit]

CountyLocationmi[1]kmExitDestinationsNotes
CherokeeBellview0.00.0


US 19 south / US 129 south / SR 11 south – Blairsville
Georgia state line
Ranger4.06.4

US 64 west / US 74 west – Cleveland
West end of US 64/74 overlap
Murphy9.014.5

US 19 Bus. north (Hiwassee Street)
9.515.3
US 64 east – Hayesville, Franklin
East end of US 64 overlap
12.019.3

US 19 Bus. south (Pleasant Valley Road)
Marble18.029.0
NC 141 south
Andrews23.537.8

US 19 Bus. north (Main Street) / Airport Road – Western Carolina Regional Airport
26.542.6

US 19 Bus. south (Main Street)
GrahamTopton33.553.9
US 129 north (Tallulah Road) – Robbinsville
North end of US 129 overlap
SwainAlmond48.077.2
NC 28 north – Robbinsville, Fontana
North end of NC 28 overlap; also to Fontana Dam
Lauada51.082.1
NC 28 south – Franklin
South end of NC 28 overlap
53.085.364
US 74 east (Great Smoky Mountains Expressway) – Dillsboro, Waynesville
East end of US 74 overlap
Bryson City56.390.6

US 19 Conn. (Veterans Boulevard) to US 74
Cherokee66.0106.2
US 441 south – Dillsboro, Franklin, Atlanta
South end of US 441 overlap
66.5107.0


US 441 north / US 441 Bus. south – Blue Ridge Parkway, Great Smoky Mountains National Park
North end of US 441 and south end of US 441 Business overlap
67.0107.8

US 441 Bus. south
South end of US 441 Business overlap
Jackson
No major junctions
Haywood78.0125.5 Blue Ridge Parkway
Dellwood87.0140.0
US 276 north (Jonathan Creek Road)
North end of US 276 overlap
Lake Junaluska89.0143.2
US 276 south (Russ Road) – Waynesville
South end of US 276 overlap
90.0144.8103

US 23 south / US 74 west (Great Smoky Mountains Expressway) – Waynesville, Sylva
South end of US 23 and west end of US 74 overlap, northbound exit and Southbound entrance
91.0146.5104
US 23 Bus. / NC 209 – Lake Junaluska, Waynesville, Hot Springs
92.0148.1105West Jones CoveNo southbound entrance
Clyde93.0149.7106

US 74 east (Great Smoky Mountains Expressway) to I-40 – Asheville, Knoxville
East end of US 74 overlap
Canton97.0156.1
NC 215 north (Blackwell Drive)
North end of NC 215 overlap
98.0157.7
NC 215 south (Reed Street)
South end of NC 215 overlap
98.2158.0
NC 110 south (Pisgah Drive)
BuncombeCandler107.0172.2
NC 151 south (Pisgah Highway)
Enka109.0175.4
NC 112 east (Sand Hills Road)
Asheville110.0177.0 I-40 / US 74 / US 74A – Statesville, KnoxvilleWest end of US 74A overlap
113.0181.9



US 19 Bus. north / US 23 Bus. north (Haywood Road)
114.0183.5
NC 63 north (Leicester Highway) – Leicester
115.0185.1






Future I-26 east / I-240 west / US 19 Bus. south / US 23 Bus. south
East end of Future I-26 overlap, west end of I-240 overlap; business routes hidden at intersection
US 19 overlaps with Interstate 26 (exits 3A to 9).
Madison134.0215.7
I-26 / US 23 / US 23A north – Asheville, Wolf Laurel, Johnson City
West end of I-26 overlap, north end of US 23 overlap, brief US 23A overlap
YanceyCane River145.0233.4

US 19E north / US 19W north – Burnsville, Erwin
US 19 ends; US 19E and US 19W begin
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Google (January 31, 2011). "US 19 in North Carolina" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved January 31, 2011.
  2. ^ "Status of Corridors in North Carolina" (PDF). Appalachian Regional Commission. September 30, 2013. Retrieved October 24, 2014.
  3. ^ a b c "North Carolina Memorial Highways and other Named Facilities" (PDF). North Carolina Department of Transportation. Retrieved November 16, 2012.[permanent dead link]
  4. ^ a b c "North Carolina Scenic Byways" (PDF). North Carolina Department of Transportation. Archived from the original (PDF) on October 20, 2012. Retrieved November 16, 2012.
  5. ^ a b c d "NCRoads.com: US 19". Archived from the original on November 25, 2010. Retrieved October 31, 2010.
  6. ^ Special Committee on U.S. Route Numbering (June 28, 1982). "Route Numbering Committee Agenda" (PDF) (Report). Washington, DC: American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials. p. 4. Retrieved October 22, 2014 – via Wikimedia Commons.
  7. ^ Burrell, Doris (January 20, 1984). "Expressway: State Makes It Official". The Mountaineer. p. 1A.
  8. ^ "US Route Change (1986-06-09)" (PDF). North Carolina Department of Transportation. June 9, 1986. Retrieved August 31, 2014.
  9. ^ Special Committee on U.S. Route Numbering (June 9, 1986). "Route Numbering Committee Agenda" (Report). Washington, DC: American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials. p. 3. Retrieved August 31, 2014 – via Wikisource.
  10. ^ Special Committee on U.S. Route Numbering (November 8, 1986). "Route Numbering Committee Agenda" (PDF) (Report). Washington, DC: American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials. p. 4. Retrieved August 31, 2014 – via Wikimedia Commons.
  11. ^ Special Committee on U.S. Route Numbering (May 25, 1987). "Route Numbering Committee Agenda" (PDF) (Report). Washington, DC: American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials. p. 3. Retrieved October 22, 2014 – via Wikimedia Commons.
  12. ^ "Route Change (1987-06-15)" (PDF). North Carolina Department of Transportation. June 15, 1987. Retrieved October 22, 2014.
  13. ^ Barrett, Mark (November 2, 2012). "Wider U.S. 19 opens". Asheville, NC: Asheville Citizen-Times. Retrieved November 16, 2012.
  14. ^ Staff. "U.S. 19 Ribbon Cutting". NCDOTcommunications. Retrieved November 16, 2012.
  15. ^ Staff. "Project #A-0009". Project Details. North Carolina Department of Transportation. Archived from the original on October 29, 2011. Retrieved November 16, 2012.
  16. ^ Staff. "Project #B-3656". Project Details. North Carolina Department of Transportation. Archived from the original on October 29, 2011. Retrieved November 16, 2012.
  17. ^ Staff. "Project #R-4406". Project Details. North Carolina Department of Transportation. Archived from the original on October 29, 2011. Retrieved November 16, 2012.
  18. ^ Staff. "Project #A-0010". Project Details. North Carolina Department of Transportation. Archived from the original on October 29, 2011. Retrieved November 16, 2012.
  19. ^ Staff. "Project #I-2513". Project Details. North Carolina Department of Transportation. Archived from the original on October 29, 2011. Retrieved November 16, 2012.
  20. ^ Perrotti, Kyle (June 15, 2021). "Major changes coming to US 23/74". The Mountaineer.

External links[edit]

KML is from Wikidata
Preceded by U.S. Route 19
North Carolina
Succeeded by