is a main road
by the public
between important destinations, such as cities
, and states
. Highway designs vary
widely and can range from a two-lane road without margins to a
multi-lane, grade-separated expressway
, or motorway
. In English, British, and American law,
the word "highway" is sometimes used to denote any
way used for travel, whether major highway, freeway, street, lane,
alley, pathway, dirt track, footpaths, and trails, and navigable
waterways. However, in practical and useful meaning, a "highway" is
a major and significant, well-constucted road that is capable of
carrying reasonably-heavy to extremely-heavy traffic. Examples of
these in North America include the U.S.
, the Trans-Canada Highway
, the Interstate Highway
, State Highways
, and Canadian Provincial
Highways. Any interconnected set of highways can be variously
referred to as a "highway system", a "highway network", or a
"highway transportation system".
The United States has the world's largest network of highways,
including both the Interstate
and the U.S.
. At least one of these
networks is present in every state and they interconnect most major
China's highway network is the second most extensive in the world,
with a total length of about 3,573 million km. China's expressway
network is also the second longest in
the world, and it is quickly expanding, stretching some
60,300 km at the end of 2008, In 2008 alone, 6,433 km
expressways were added to the network.
Kingdom, the term "highway" is ambiguous and not in common
use, usually reserved for historic or legal use (see public highway).
The terms main road
more common. Any classification of a road as a "highway" there, and
therefore any statistics about the total length of a highway
network there, is purely subjective.
Some highways, like the Pan-American Highway
or the European routes
, span multiple countries.
Australia's Highway 1
longest national highway in the world at over and runs almost the
entire way around the continent.
Highways are not always continuous stretches of pavement. For
example, some highways are interrupted by bodies of water, and
routes may serve as sections of the
highway. An example of this is U.S.
Route 10, which crosses Lake Michigan via ferryboat.
World Record Highways
An International motorway sign, found
mainly in Europe denoting the start of special motorway
restrictions to a section of highway.
- Longest international highway: the Pan-American Highway, which connects
many countries in the Americas, is nearly
long . The
Pan-American Highway is discontinuous because there is a
significant gap in it in southeastern Panama, where the
rainfall is immense and the terrain is entirely unsuitable for
highway constuction. The entire area is covered with
swamps and rain
forests. Central Panama and Colombia are
connected by ferries and by airline transportation.
- Longest national highway: Australia's Highway 1 at over 20,000 km
(12,427 mi). It runs almost the entire way around the continent's
coastline. With the exception of the Federal Capital of
Canberra, which is
far inland, Highway 1 links all of Australia's capital cities,
although Brisbane and Darwin are not directly connected, but rather
are bypassed short distances away. Also, there is a ferry
connection to the island state of Tasmania, and then a
stretch of Highway 1 that links the major towns and cities of
Tasmania, including Launceston and Hobart (this state’s capital
- Longest national highway (Point to point): The
Trans-Canada Highway (the
T.C.H.) (known as TCH 1 in western Canada) is 7,821 km (4,857
mi) long . The T.C.H. runs east-west across southern Canada, the
populated portion of the country, and it connects many of the major
urban centers along its route crossing almost all of the provinces,
and reaching almost all of the capital cities. The T.C.H. begins on
the east in eastern Newfoundland, traversed that island, and crosses to the mainland
by ferry. It reaches most of the Maritime Provinces of eastern Canada, and
a side route using ferries traverses the province of Prince Edward
Island. After crossing the two most populous
provinces of Quebec and Ontario, the T.C.H.
continues westward across Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta, and
reaching the metropolis of Vancouver, B.C., on the Pacific Coast, there is also a ferry route
west to Vancouver
Island and the provncial capital city of Victoria,
- Largest national highway system: The United
States of America has approximately of highway within its borders
- Busiest highway: Highway 401 in Ontario, Canada, has volumes surpassing an average of
500,000 vehicles per day in some sections of Toronto .
- Widest highway (number of maximum
through lanes): Highway 401
Ontario, has the most unrestricted free-flow lanes, at 22
(26 including restricted) .
Social and environmental effects of highways
By reducing travel times relative to city or town streets, highways
have a positive effect upon balance of leisure or productive time
through reduced commute and other travel time. However, highways
have criticisms, partially due to being an extended linear source
- Community cohesion: Where highways are created
through existing communities, there can be reduced community
cohesion and more difficult local access. Consequently property
values have decreased in many cutoff neighborhoods, leading to
decreased housing quality over time.
- Roadway noise:
Highways generate more roadway noise than arterial streets due to the higher operating
speeds. Therefore, considerable noise health effects are expected from
highway systems. Noise mitigation
strategies exist to reduce sound levels at nearby sensitive receptors. The idea that
highway design could be influenced by acoustical engineering considerations
first arose about 1973.
- Air quality issues:
Highways may contribute fewer emissions than arterials carrying the same
vehicle volumes. This is because high, constant-speed operation
creates an emissions reduction compared to vehicular flows with
stops and starts. However, concentrations of air pollutants near
highways may be higher due to increased traffic volumes. Therefore,
the risk of exposure to elevated levels of air pollutants from a
highway may be considerable, and further magnified when highways
have traffic congestion.
- New roads can create new traffic, sometimes referred to as
induced demand. If not accurately
predicted at the planning stage, this extra traffic may lead to the
new road becoming congested sooner than anticipated. More roads add
on to car-dependence. This may mean that by building a new road,
there is only short-term mitigation of traffic congestion. In the
long-term, even more cars may take over the excess road space -
which exacerbates the problem. The induced demand phrase is often
used as a catch-all phrase by proponents of freeway revolt.
- Lanes for High-Occupancy Vehicles are
being added to some newer/reconstructed highways in North America
and other countries around the world to encourage carpooling and mass-transit. These lanes help
reduce the number of cars on the highway and thus reduces pollution
and traffic congestion by promoting the use of carpooling in order
to be able to use these lanes. However, they tend to require
dedicated lanes on a highway which makes them difficult to
construct in dense urban areas, where they are the most
New highways can also cause habitat fragmentation
and allow human intrusion
into previously untouched areas, as well as (counterintuitively)
increasing congestion, by increasing the number of intersections.
They can also reduce the use of public
, indirectly leading to greater pollution.
Highway systems by country
In Australia, a highway
is a distinct type of road from
. The word highway
used to mean major roads connecting large cities, towns and
different parts of metropolitan
. Metropolitan highways often have traffic lights at
intersections, and rural highways usually have only one lane in
each direction. The words freeway
are generally reserved for the most arterial
routes, usually with grade-separated intersections and usually
significantly straightened and widened to a minimum of four lanes.
The term motorway
is used in some
Australian cities to refer to freeways
have been allocated a metropolitan route number, and in Sydney, a
has a toll, whereas a freeway
is free of charge. On the Hume Highway when traveling from Melbourne to Sydney there is only one set of traffic signals,
found in Holbrook.
Roads may be part-highway and part-freeway
until they are fully upgraded. The Cahill expressway is the only "named"
expressway in New South
Wales, which opened in 1954 the first in New South
Belgium has the highest density highway network of Europe following
The Netherlands at 54.7 km per 1000 km². Most of its
highways have three lanes with a few exceptions like the ring-roads
around Brussels and Antwerp which have five or six lanes in various
stretches. Belgium is situated at a crossroads of several different
countries, and its highways are used by people of many
nationalities. In Belgium the highways are indicated by the letter
"A" and an E(uropean) number. The E numbers are used most often.
Roads that are (part of) a ring-road around a city or a town are
usually indicated by an R number.
Many of the highways in Belgium are illuminated at night, since
there is a surplus of nuclear electric power during the off-peak
hours of human activity. It is sometimes spuriously claimed that
the Belgium illuminated highways ("the Belgium window"), along
with the Great Wall of China
the only man-made structures that are visible from outer space with
the naked eye. This is highly incorrect, since the Great Wall of China
was the only
man-made stucture that was visible by American astronauts who were
on the Moon
during the Apollo project
, and that was 400,000 km away
from the Earth. From a low-Earth-orbital altitude of 200 km
above the surface of the Earth, many, many man-made structures are
visible with the naked eye, including as the Suez Canal, the wakes of large, fast ships at sea, such as
aircraft carriers, the large cities
of the world, and the large man-made reservoirs, such as Lake Mead, Lake
Volta, and the Franklin D. Roosevelt Lake.
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Herzegovina, the Pan-European Corridor
Vc Motorway, Budapest - Osijek - Sarajevo - Ploce, is one of
the most significant and project of the highest priority; in Bosnia
and Herzegovina it coincides with A1 Motorway. The construction
works on the road have already begun, but intensified beginning of
the construction will be a key starter of economic and social
activities, and will enable Bosnia and Herzegovina to be connected to main European traffic network,
as well as to global European economic and social
Construction of the motorway
, whose total
length is 340 km
, will provide: rational connecting
to neighboring countries and regions; stabilizing and developing
effects will be reached; transport conditions and quality of life
improvement; economy competitiveness enhancement; new projects
launched and national and international private investments
(or expressway/freeway) are named "rodovia",
and Brazilian highways are divided in two types: regional highways
(generally of less importance and entirely inside of one state) and
national highways (of major importance to the country).
is the name given exclusively to roads
connecting two or more cities with a sizable distance separating
the extremes of the highway. Urban highways for commuting are
uncommon in Brazil, and when they are present, they receive
different names, depending of the region (Avenida, Marginal, Linha,
Via, Eixo, etc). Very rarely names other than "rodovia" are
Regional highways are named YY-XXX, where YY is the abbreviation of
the state where the highway is running in and XXX is a number (e.g.
where SP means that the highway is running entirely in the state of
National highways are named BR-XXX. National highways connects
multiples states altogether, are of major importance to the
Brazil to another country. The meaning of the numbers are:
- 001-100 - it means that the highway runs
radially from Brasília. It is an exception to the cases below.
- 101-200 - it means that the highway runs in a south-north
- 201-300 - it means that the highway runs in a west-east
- 301-400 - it means that the highway runs in a diagonal way
(northwest-southeast, for example)
- 400-499 - another exception, they are less important highways
and its function is to connect a city to an arterial highway
Often, Brazilian highways receive names (famous people, etc) their
YY/BR-XXX designation (example: SP-280 is also known as Rodovia
- In Canada, there is no national standard for nomenclature,
although in non-technical contexts highway appears to be
most popular in most areas. The general speed limits on most
Canadian highways range between on two-lane highways, and between
on multi-lane, divided highways.
- Canada is the second largest country in the world in terms of
land area, though it only has 1,350,581 kilometers (839,212 miles)
of paved roads. This is far less highway and road distance
than the United
States, which is smaller, but has a milder climate and a
larger, more dispersed population, and more than 6,000,000
kilometers of paved roads and highways. However, Canada
still has many more roads and highways than Russia, the largest
country in the world in land area, with an estimated just 336,000 kilometers (208,000
miles) of paved roads.
most extensive freeway network in Canada is in the well-populated
southeastern Canada, linking southern
Ontario, southern Quebec, Nova Scotia, New
Brunswick, and the
United States. This makes the freeway network there very
well-traveled, requiring these routes to be well-maintained to
overcome the frequently harsh winter weather, and also wide enough
to accommodate the high traffic volumes that they carry in large
metropolitan areas, such as around Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa, and
Detroit, to prevent the economical problems and
frustrations that result from heavy traffic congestion, and also be safe
enough to reduce the number of vehicle accidents.
Ontario, all public roads are legally defined as
highways, though provincially managed
roads are known legally as the King's Highways.
In day-to-day usage, the term highway is used for
provincial routes. It is also common for surface routes to be
referred to by the phrase number (e.g. "Take Number 10 from Mississauga to Owen Sound"), especially by older generations. The
words freeway or expressway are sometimes used to
refer to controlled-access,
high-speed, grade-separated highways such as the 400-series highways, the
Gardiner Expressway, the
Don Valley Parkway, the Conestoga Parkway, or the E.C. Row
Expressway. The only highway officially labeled as a freeway is
the Macdonald-Cartier Freeway, usually known as Highway 401, or simply "the 401",
which is sometimes North America's busiest single highway and the
widest highway in the world at places near Toronto with nine lanes
in each direction. Nearly all highways in Ontario use parclo
interchanges, which were developed by the province.
Parclos are used to avoid weaving, and to maximize efficiency and
- Nova Scotia numbers its highways by the trunk routes they
parallel. For example, Highway 107 parallels Trunk 7. This,
to a lesser extent, also applies in Ontario (e.g. Highway 410 and Highway 420 parallel Highway 10 and Highway 20.) Nova Scotia also numbers
its highways according to usage: main arterial highways are in the
100s, secondary or old arterial highways are numbered in the double
digits from 1 to 28, and collector
roads are numbered in the triple digits starting at 200.
- The Trans-Canada Highway
(T.C.H.) is a highway that crosses all of Canada from east to west
and enters all ten provinces. The actual condition T.C.H. ranges
from a two-lane highway across the Great Plains and the Rocky
Mountains to a multi-lane urban expressway. There are three or
more ferry routes along the T.C.H., which allows the T.C.H. to
connect to Newfoundland Island, Prince Edward Island, and Vancouver Island. However the comparatively-new Confederation Bridge allows driving from New Brunswick to Prince Edward
Island without using a ferry. (Ferries do connect this
Island to Quebec, where the main route of the T.C.H. is.)
Since the Trans-Canada Highway is not a divided, multi-lane highway
for the majority of its route, the T.C.H. is considered to be more
of an equivalent to the U.S. Route highway network in the neighboring United
States of America.
On the other hand, Ontario's 400-series
expressways, Quebec's autoroutes, New Brunswick's portion of the
Trans-Canada Highway, and Nova Scotia's 100-series highways are
provincial equivalents to the Interstate Highway System
United States. The Canadian expressways interconnect with each
other across provencial lines, and also with the American
Interstate Highway System. For example, expressways in Quebec connect
Montreal with the American border, and thence Interstate 87 continues from there to New York City, and likewise, Toronto is connected the border by Ontario expressways, and
thence by Interstate Highway to Buffalo, New York.
Chile has a large Highway coverage which connects the whole country
but with the exception of the Magallanes Region.
China, People's Republic
"Highways" in China, more often than not, refer to China National Highways
. The fully
divided routes are instead called expressways
. , there were 3.573 million
km of highways and 60,300 km of expressways in China; both
total lengths are second only to the United States.
In Mainland China
, private companies
reimbursed through toll
are the primary
means of creating and financing the National Trunk Highway System
Expressways are lumped with first-grade G-prefixed guodaos
(国道, or "national highway") or A-prefixed first-grade expressways
in major municipal cities. All roads in the NTHS and most
A-prefixed roads are expressways.
- M-prefix: National (Trunk) Expressways (planned)
- G-prefix: National highways (typically expressways)
- A-prefix: Municipal highways (typically expressways)
- S-prefix: Provincial highways
- X-prefix: County highways
- Y-prefix: Rural roads
- Z-prefix: Special use roads (e.g., airport expressways)
Some highways are numbered with a leading zero (e.g. G030).
The term Freeway
during the 1990s was used on a few
expressways (such as the Jingshi
). The term freeway
has since been replaced
on all signs in China. The Chinese name
for expressways is uniform; in pinyin, it is gaosu gonglu
which literally means "high speed public
Signs on the National Highways (G-prefix) are green, while on the
lower-grade highways and urban expressways (A-prefix) are
In Hong Kong, the type of high speed roads is referred to as
, but some are named as highways
('Yuen Long Highway', 'Tolo Highway', 'Tsuen Wan
Road', 'Tuen Mun Road', etc.). Some others are named
Croatia has 13 highways and 10 expressways. The earliest highway in
Croatia was built in 1971. The word highway is a common Croatian
translation of the term autocesta
describes a toll highway
similar to a
or an Autobahn
completion in the past decade or so of some extremely-long highway
bridge-tunnels it is now possible to drive back and forth between
the mainland of Denmark ("Jutland") and the major
island of the east where the capital city of Copenhagen is located. Also, there is now a bridge-tunnel that
connects that major island with Sweden and its
highway system (and also its railroad system). Thus, it is now
possible to drive from Denmark not only to Germany, but to Sweden, too.
are all interconnected within Denmark by major highways.
bridges, tunnels, and highways now make it possible to drive from
northern Sweden to Gibraltar at the southern edge of Spain or to
Italy, at the southern tip of the Italian
The national highways in Finland are numbered 1-29 and are in total
9.000 km long. This number system originates from 1938.
France has a national highway system dating back to Louis XV
(see Corps of Ponts et
). The chaussées
constructed at this
time, radiating out from Paris, form the basis for the "routes
nationales" (RN), whose red numbers differ from the yellow
numbering used for secondary "routes departementales". The RNs
numbered from 1 to 20 radiate from Paris to major ports or border
crossings. More recently (after the Second World War), France has
) with a speed limit of
130 km/h (110 in rainy conditions or urban areas).
Aside from highways bearing the Autobahn
designation, Germany has many two- and four-lane roads. Federal
highways not known as autobahns are called Bundesstraßen
) and, while usually two-lane roads, they
may also be four-lane, limited-access
expressways of local or regional importance. Unlike the Autobahns,
(marked by black numbers on a yellow
background) mostly have speed limits (usually 100 km/h, but
occasionally higher on limited-access segments, and lower in urban
areas or near intersections).
Hungary has 7 major motorways ("autópálya"):
- M0 is
a quasi-circular highway for the traffic bypasing Budapest. It is divided in 4 sectors: Southern (links
motorways M1, M7, M6 and M5), South-eastern (links Motorway M5 and
Main Road nr. 4), Eastern (links Main Road nr. 4 and Motorway M3),
Northern (links Main Road nr. 2 with the Megyeri Bridge) and
Western (to be finished in 2015; will link main roads 11, 11 and
Motorway M1). The total length will be around 100 km.
links Budapest and the north-western border with Austria
(Hegyeshalom), then continues its way toward Vienna.
The total length is around 170 km.
links Budapest and the north-eastern city of Miskolc (M30 branch), eastern cities of Nyíregyháza (M3) and Debrecen (M35 branch). Provides links toward
Slovakia, Ukraine and Romania. It has a total length of around
links Budapest and the southern city of Szeged, then the
Serbian border (Röszke). It provides a
connection to Southern Europe by route E75 and also links to route
68 in Romania. M5 motorway has a length of around
links Budapest and the southern shore of Lake Balaton, then continues its way toward Croatia and Slovenia. Its length is about 230 km.
links Budapest and Dunaújváros, then will continue its way toward the southern
city of Pécs.
The current length is around 60 km.
Also, there are other smaller motorway sections that will be linked
to the national motorway network in the future. See here an
animation of Hungarian motorway developments (past, present and
.Motorways usually have 2 traffic lanes and an
emergency lane on each direction, divided by a green zone and
metallic rail. The speed limit is 130 km/h.
Expressways usually have no dividing lane in the middle, but
sometimes have a metallic rail. The number of lanes is one per
direction, with sections of 1+2 lanes (for easier overtaking). The
speed limit is 110 km/h. Motorways and expressways cannot be
used by vehicles that are not able to reach 60 km/h. There is
a toll on all motorways, except M0. Trucks and buses have a
separate toll system. (
Main roads usually have one lane per direction, no dividing rail.
The speed limit is 90 km/h.
County roads have less traffic then main roads, the speed limit is
In India, 'Highway' refers to one of the many National
or State Highways
that run up to a total
length of about 67,000 km consisting mostly of two-lane paved
roads, changing into higher lanes mostly around cities. National Highways
are designated as
NH followed by the number.As of 2009, the four major cities in India –
Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, and Delhi – are
connected by the Golden
Quadrilateral, a set of highways forming a rough quadrilateral
that consists of 4 to 6 laned roads.
Other major cities are
connected to it by the North-South and East-West
refers to any access
controlled road with grade-separated intersections and make up a
very small portion of India's highway network, at about 200 km
in length.. Expressways are separate from the highway network,
except for the Delhi-Gurgaon
, which is part of NH 8and
is part of NH 4
Ireland has a similar system to the United Kingdom except that its major roads
are classed as 'N' road or
'R' road rather than
'A' road/'B' road as
in the UK.
In Italy the term highway
can be applied to
(can be translated as expressway
and it is toll free) and autostrada
(Italian term for motorway
: the most part of the system it is
mandatory toll). Italy was the first country in the world to
build such roads, the first one being the "Autostrada dei Laghi" (Autostrada
of the Lakes), from Milan to
Varese, built in
1921 and finished in 1924.
This system of early motorways
was extended in the early 1930s till the early 1970s. Now days the
Autostrade is a comprehensive system of about 6.500 km of modern
motorways where the maximum speed limit is 130 km/h.
The expressways, or kōsokudōro
(high speed roads), of
Japan are made of a huge network of freeway-standard toll roads.
Once government-owned, they have been a turned over to private
companies. Most expressways are four lanes with a central reservation
, or median. The
speed limits, with certain regulations and great flexibility,
usually include a maximum speed of 100 km/h, and a minimum
speed of 50 km/h. There are also expresways not able to
classified as national or urban expressways.
highest level of major roads in Malaysia, expressway , has full
access control, grade separated junctions, and mostly
tolled. The expressways link the major state
capitals in Peninsular Malaysia and major cities in Klang
is lower level with limited access control, some
at-grade junctions or roundabouts
generally with 2 lanes in each separated direction. These are generally
untolled and funded by the federal government, hence the first one
is called Federal Highway
linking Klang and
The trunk roads linking major cities and towns in the country are
called federal trunk roads
, and are generally 2 lanes
single carriageway roads, in places with a third climbing lane for
This is a
list of numbered federal
highways (carreteras federales) in Mexico.
Federal Highways from north to
south are assigned odd numbers; highways from west to east are
assigned even numbers. The numbering schema starts in the northwest
of the country (Tijuana, BC).
This list identifies the road terminus always starting from the
north or the west end of the highway.
In New Zealand, both motorway
have at least
two-lanes of traffic in either direction separated by a median,
with no access to adjacent properties. The distinction depends on
the type of traffic allowed to use the route. Non-vehicular traffic
and farm-equipment are prohibited from motorways, while
pedestrians, cyclists, tractors, and farm animals are legally
entited to use expressways such as the Waikato Expressway south of
the Bombay Hills and the Tauranga expressway system, although this
is rare. New Zealand's main routes are designated state
as they are funded by the National Government.
State Highway 1 is the only
route to run through both the North and South Islands, and runs (in
order north-south) from Cape Reinga to Wellington in the North Island, and from Picton to Bluff in the South Island.
State Highways 2-5 are main routes in the
North Island, State Highways 6-9 in the South Island, and state
highways numbered from 10 onwards are generally found in numerical
order from north to south. State highways usually incorporate different
standards of roads, for example, State Highway 1 from Auckland to Hamilton incorporates the Northern and Southern Motorways in
the Auckland area, the Waikato Expressway, and a rural road before
passing through the streets of Hamilton.
is rarely used relating to New Zealand roads, and
can only be considered an Americanism
system is in constant development. Most of its parts are owned and funded by
the government, but in recent times Public-private partnership come
more and more into practice, such as in a part of the A59 between
Oss and 's-Hertogenbosch.
The Netherlands has the highest density
highway network of Europe at 56.5 km per 1000 km²,
followed by Belgium. The 'Autosnelwegen', the main corridors, are
designated with an A while the minor connecting roads have an N
number. Sections of the A network are also part of the International E-road network
connecting with neighboring Belgium, Germany and England, the
latter by ferry
. The speed limit is
120 km/h, unless noted otherwise, and 100 km/h or
80 km/h on various locations. This is done to "protect the
environment" and to limit noise to surrounding residential areas,
albeit not too effective a measure.
Norway has a national highway system, numbered 2-899. Some main
highways are also European highways and have an E before the
number. The highways are often relatively narrow and curvy. Near
the larger cities, especially around Oslo and Trondheim, there are
motorways. Norway has also been engaged in recent decades in boring
some extremely-long highway tunnels through the mountain ranges,
and some of these, now the world's longest, are so long that they
have hollowed-out caverns in the midst of them for motorists to
stop and take rests.
Pakistan has its own network of highways and motorways. Motorways
extending from M1 to M10 will eventually connect whole length of
the country from Peshawar to Karachi. The M2, the first
motorway, was built in 1997 with the contract being awarded to the
Korean firm Daewoo.
the federal capital Islamabad with Punjab's provincial capital Lahore.
network was then extended to Sargodha and then to Faisalabad with the M3. M1 highway to the
Frontier Province's capital Peshawar had been completed in October 2007.
M6, and M7 have been planned and also being built by local and
foreign firms. This will connect Faisalababd, Multan, Dera Ghazi
Khan, Rotadero (Larkana) to Karachi. N5 links Karachi to other cities.
Entry on all Pakistan
highways is restricted to fast moving wheelers only. Slow-moving
traffic and two wheelers (such as motorcycles and bicycles) are not
allowed and construction and agricultural machinery is also
restricted. Highway Police personnel use heavy motor bikes and fast
moving Range Rovers for patrolling and are quite good at
maintaining the traffic system. M9 and M10 are also functional now
that connect Karachi to Hayderabad. The LSM (Lahore Sialkot
Motorway) which is 103 km is under construction and will be
completed by 2010.
Many Philippine expressways
privately owned and maintained. All are located in the largest island,
They follow the US Interstate
Standards and speed limits are strictly enforced. The
most modern and the longest expressway, the North Luzon Expressway
capital, Manila to other provinces in Northern Luzon while the
South Luzon Expressway
Manila with provinces on the Southern Luzon.
Presently, all Philippine expressways are under rehabilitation to
decrease the occurrence of traffic jams and to improve their
quality. They are widened and improved of standards.
There are only seven tollways in Luzon Island, the North Luzon
Expressway (connecting Manila to North Luzon), the South Luzon
Expressway (connecting Manila to Southern Luzon), the Roman
Expressway (in Bataan peninsula), Subic Freeport Expressway
(connecting Subic Freeport to Dinalupihan), the Southern Tagalog
Access Road (STAR Tollway) (connecting Sto. Tomas to Batangas Port,
to decongest the Port of Manila and it will be connected directly
to South Luzon Expressway), and the Manila-Cavite Expressway,
connecting Metro Manila with the Province of Cavite,
Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway (connecting the existing Subic
Freeport Expressway to Clark Zone and Hacienda Luisita and also
extending North Luzon Expressway to Tarlac City but it has
3 km gap between NLEx and SCTEx).
Despite that many highways in Metro Manila, there are still two
lane and one way roads like national and provincial roads around
There are plans to extend the existing expressways and to build a
new one throughout the Philippines, the Tarlac-La Union Expressway
aims to extend North Luzon Expressway to the area near Poro Point
but it will be extended initially to Rosario in La Union,
Tarlac-Dingalan Expressway aims to convert Dingalan into an
International Pacific Port and to decongest the Port of Manila, The
Cebu Trans-Axial Expressway aims to benefit Cebu's economy and to
decongest the island's coastal road and to protect Cebu's coastal
areas from severe exploitation, North East Luzon Expressway aims to
connect Metro Manila to Cagayan Valley but it will be built
initially to Nueva Ecija. South Luzon Expressway will be extended
towards Lucena City.
Romania currently has two operational highways, summing up to
279 km; that is the least developed motorway network among all
the European Union
members. They are
now being extended and additionally, another three motorways are
planned to be built by 2016.
There are no tolls
for using the motorways in
Romania, except one bridge over the Danube on the A2. Nevertheless,
every car that uses a motorway or a national road in Romania must
wear a sticker called a rovinietă
windscreen, which can be bought at larger petrol stations.
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Russia has many highways, but only small number of them are
currently motorways. Examples of Russian motorways are Moscow
Ring Roads. Highways and motorways are free in Russia and only two motorways, Western High Speed Diameter and
Petersburg toll motorway, currently under construction, will be
first Russian toll motorways.
It must be noted that Russians
themselves often translate the Russian name for highway
(Автомобильные дороги=automobile roads) into motorway in English,
which is not a correct English name.
Saudi Arabia has a total highway length of 173,000 km.
Highways in Saudi Arabia vary from ten laned roads to small four
laned roads. The city highways and other major highways
are well maintained such as the roads in Riyadh.
The roads are constructed so they resist
the summer's extremely high heat and do not reflect the strong sun.
The outer city highways such as the one linking from coast to coast
are not as great as the inner-city highways but the government is
now working on rebuilding those roads.
Some of the important inter-city highways include:
- Dammam - Khafji Highway (457 km)
- Jeddah - Makkah Highway (75 km)
- Makkah - Madinah Al Munawarah Highway (421 km)
- Riyadh - Dammam Highway (395 km)
- Riyadh - Qasim Highway (317 km)
- Riyadh - Makkah Highway (950 km)
- Taif - Abha Highway (950 km)
The expressways of Singapore are all dual carriageways with
grade-separated access. They usually have three lanes in each
direction, although there are two- or four-lane carriageways in
some places. There are nine expressways, with another one, the
Marina Coastal Expressway
currently under construction.
Construction on the first expressway, the Pan Island Expressway
, started in
1966. The other expressways were completed in stages, with the
first phase of the Kallang-Paya Lebar Expressway
being the most recently completed, in 2007. Today, there are 92.5
miles (148 km) of expressways in Singapore.
Colloquially, the terms "freeway", "highway", and "motorway" are
used synonymously. There are very few references to the term
"expressway" in South Africa. A freeway, highway or motorway refers
to a divided dual carriageway
, and at least two
lanes in either direction. A central island, usually either with
drainage, foliage, or high-impact barriers, provides a visible
separation between the carriageways in opposite directions. As in
the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, and Japan, South Africans
drive on the left-hand side of the road and nearly all steering
wheels are on the right-hand side of vehicles.
Freeways are designated with one of three labels: N (in reference
to national roads), R (short for "route", in reference to
provincial roads), and M (in reference to metropolitan roads). This
has more to do with the location of a road and its function than
anything else. In addition, "N" roads usually run the length of the
country over long distances, "R" roads usually inter-connect cities
and towns within a province, and "M" roads carry heavy traffic in
metropolitan areas. Route markings also determine who paid for the
road: "N" was paid for by national government, "R" by provincial
government, and "M" by local government. In recent years, some "R"
roads have been re-designated as "N" roads, so that control and
funding comes from the South African National Roads Agency.
Expressways in South Korea were originally numbered in order of
construction. Since August 24, 2001, they have been numbered in a
scheme somewhat similar to that of the Interstate Highway System
- Arterial routes are designated by two-digit route numbers, with
north-south routes having odd numbers, and east-west routes having
even numbers. Primary routes (i.e. major thoroughfares) have five
and zero as their last digits respectively, while lesser
(secondary) routes have various final digits.
- Branch routes have three-digit route numbers, where the first
two digits match the route number of an arterial route.
- Belt lines have three-digit route numbers where the first digit
matches the respective city's postal code.
- Route numbers in the range 70-99 are not used in South Korea
and are reserved for designations in the event of Korean reunification.
- The Gyeongbu Expressway kept
its Route 1 designation, as it is South Korea's first and most
Spain's national highway system dates back to the era of King Carlos III
. The roads built at
this time, radiating from Madrid, form the basis for the carreteras nacionales
radiales, numbered clockwise from I to VI, which radiate from
Madrid to major ports or border crossings.
1960s Spain constructed autopistas
(toll highways) and
, and nowadays (2005) has 15,000 km of
freeway in Sweden was built
between the cities of Malmö and Lund in the Skåne County in
The Swedish roads are divided in three
classes; Motorväg, which is a 4-8 lane freeway with the speed limit
of 110-120 km/h. Riksväg, which is a state highway with 2-4
lanes. The Riksväg has a speed limit of 70-100 km/h. The last
road is the Länsväg, which is a "county route" with 2 lanes and
70–90 km/h in speed limit. The authority which is responsible
for the roads in Sweden is Vägverket
The term Autobahn
(French) / Autostrada
(Italian) is used for normal
expressways where there is a central physical structure separating
two different directional carriageways. This is often translated
into English as motorway
In express routes where there is no central physical structure
separating two different directional carriageways, but crossings
are still motorway-like otherwise, and traffic lights are not
present, the road is instead called an Autostrasse
, translated into
English as a motorroad
. Those often have a lower speed
limit than motorways.
The construction of Taiwan's national highways began in 1971 and
the design is heavily based on the American Interstate Highway System
Northern section between Keelung City
City was completed in 1974.
The construction of
the first freeway (No. 1) was completed in 1978. The freeway runs from
the northern harbor Keelung to the southern harbor Kaohsiung.
There was an 8.6 km branch (No.
connecting the Taiwan Taoyuan International
Construction on the other freeways began in the late 1980s. The
north section of the second north-south freeway (No. 3) between Xizhi City and Hsinchu
City was completed in 1997.
The No. 1A Branch was
extended to link No. 3 Freeway at Yingge, and renamed as No.
2 Freeway. Three other
short freeways (No. 4, No. 8, and No. 10) were built to
link the two north-south freeways in Taichung County, Tainan County, and
The entire No. 3 Freeway was completed in
To ease the congestion of No. 1 Freeway in the Taipei
metropolitan area, a 20 km elevated bridge was built in 1997 on
top of the original freeway between Xizhi City and Wugu, to serve
as a bypass for traffic not exiting/entering the freeway within the
city limits of Taipei.
construction of a freeway connecting the Taipei
metropolitan area and Yilan County began
in 1991 and was completed in June 2006.
It includes a
12.9 km tunnel (Hsuehshan
), which is the fifth longest road tunnel
in the world. An extension from Yilan County
to Hualian County
is planned. However, its
construction is being delayed due to environmental concerns.
main highway is E80 (former E5) runs from Edirne to the capital Ankara.
The United Kingdom
In the United Kingdom, unless a route is classified as a motorway
, the term which is used for a vehicular
highway may be main road
, 'A' road/'B' road
road", "unclassified road", or, where appropriate, dual carriageway
. However, in the law
of England and Wales
includes all public rights of way
regardless of the kind or amount of traffic they allow, including
streets and public
. The term
also includes bridleways, which are for pedestrians, equestrians
, and cyclists, as well as by-ways
open to all traffic (for all of those users, plus vehicular
In England and Wales, the public is said to have a "right of way"
over a highway. This means that, subject to statutory restrictions,
the route (or "way") must be kept clear to allow travel by anyone
who wishes to it. At common law
, it is
unlawful to obstruct a highway or to interfere with its lawful use.
However, many statutory provisions provide powers to do so (for
instance. to carry out roadwork).
Many public highways in the U.K. have a private owner. That is,
someone can prove "title" to them, either by being the registered
owner or by having conveyances showing exactly how the land has
been bought and sold over a long period of time. Such ownership in no
way affects the public highway rights, since the relevant "highway
authority" (usually a local authority or the Highways Agency in England and Wales, or
Amey Highways in Scotland) is deemed to own the surface of the highway,
despite someone else's ownership of the land it passes over or
However, the understanding in some places is that if the road or
highway is ever permanently closed and demolished, then complete
control of the strip of land on which it lies reverts to the actual
owner of the land. In other places, the word "easement" is used.
The governmental authority has an indefinitely-long easement to use
the strip of land for a road, but if the road vanishes, so does the
easement that goes with it. It is possible that sometime in the far
future, roads and highways will become obsolete, with people and
cargo getting from here to there by some other means. Thus, some of
the statements below are short-sighted and questionable.
Rights-of-way exist over all highways maintained at the public
expense (the majority of roads) and also over some other ways which
are not so maintained, on the principle of "once a highway, always
a highway". In such cases, landowners must allow public use for
"passing and repassing".
A right-of-way may be created by custom (by the way being used for
a long period of time) or under the relevant Sections of the
Highways Act of 1980. A right-of-way may be extinguished or
diverted in a number of ways, such as by an Act of Parliament, by a
' stopping-up or diversion
order, or by powers given to principal local authorities. For
instance, under the Channel Tunnel Rail Link Act of 1996, authority
was given for the builder of this railway link to stop up certain
highways that are mentioned in Schedule 3 of the act.
The opposite of a highway is a private road or pathway over which
no rights-of-way exist. Any use of such private ways is subject to
the consent of the owner of the land.
The United States
In the United States, "highway" is a general term for denoting a
public way, including the entire area within the right-of-way, and
includes many forms:
- a high-speed, limited-access
road like expressways, freeways, and large toll highways.
- an important road that connects cities and large towns.
- any road or street, or a travel way of any kind, including
pedestrian ways, trails, and navigable waterways, to which the
public has a perpetual right of use.
Note that the phrase "right-of-way" is used differently in the
United States than it is in the United Kingdom and certain other
places. In the U.S. a highway or road "right-of-way" means the land
on which the pavement rests, plus the shoulders beside the
pavements, plus any median strip, plus any other adjacent piece of
land that is designated for the purposes of the highway or road. In
other words, the "right-of-way" is the strip of land for the
highway or road, and a sign that say, "No Parking on Right-of-Way"
means just that: don't park on the pavement or on the land adjacent
Many paved highways for vehicles are part of the official National Highway System
of the U.S.
. Paved highways in the "U.S. Highway
system (for example, U.S. Highway 50
) can vary from two lanes wide (one
lane each direction), shoulderless, roads with no access control,
to multi-lane high-speed controlled-access highway, such as the
. These roads
are usually distinguished by being important, but not always the
primary, routes that connect populated areas. (Sometimes, the
primary route is a State Highway.) Since their inception many
decades ago, the construction of "U.S. Highways", and their major
imporvements, have been paid for 50% with Federal funds, especially
from motor fuel taxes, and 50% with State funds from whatever tax
resources that the state has. Thus, the the system of "U.S.
Highways" has always been an equal partnership between the Federal
Government and the State governments. This was a plan that changed
dramatically with the advent of the Interstate Highway system
beginning in the 1950s, but do not forget that the system of "U.S.
Highways" continued to be upgraded under the 50%-50% funding.
Highways continue to be widened, old bridges continue to be
replaces with newer and better ones, and so forth.
The term "Highways" in the U.S. even includes major paved roads
that serve purposes similar to those of the U.S. Highways or
Interstate Highways, but which are completely designed, paid for,
and maintained by state or local governments. An example of this is
Tennessee Highway 840, which
is a long, partially-completed bypass of Nashville, Tenn. that is a multi-lane, controlled-access highway
entirely designed and paid for by Tennessee.
Much of the traffic on it will eventually
come from Interstate 40
avoid the big city, and then return to Interstate 40. Incidentally,
Tennessee-840 also has connections with Interstate 24
and Interstate 65
, where both of the freeway
interchanges are already finished, as well as the eastern
interchange with Interstate 40.
When the Act of Congress that authorized the Interstate Highway System
passed and then signed by President Eisenhower
, it was already clear that
the Interstate Highways would be far more expensive, mile-for-mile,
than the U.S. Highways had been. Also, the Interstate
were to be built largely, for the purposes of
constitutionality, for Federal purposes which were,A. To promote
and enable the National Defense by being able to move very large
numbers of troops, and their equipment and supplies from place to
place, rapidly, by truck and bus. Also, long stretches of the
expressway would have the capability of functioning as emergency
take-off and landing strips for Air Force planes in wartime.B. To
promote and enable commerce between the 48 states that existed
then, under the Interstate Commerce
of the Constitution
these being the stated purposes of the Interstate Highways (and
also the source of the name "Interstate Highway", from the Commerce
Clause), and because of their great cost, Congress decided to set
the standard for Federal funding for the Interstate System at 90%,
leaving 10% for the States to pay for.
Another monetary difference came from the fact that the Interstate
Highways were to be designed to be high-speed and safe expressways.
This meant that they needed to have much wider open strips of land
along their sides, because this created safety zones on each side
of the highways so that vehicles that were in accidents or simply
lost control would have somewhere to go, to slow down gradually,
and not crash into trees, boulders, light poles, buildings, parked
vehicles, fire hydrants, and other kinds of obstacles that you can
think of. Roadway interchanges for Interstate Highways were also to
be very large (and over the decades, they became a lot larger than
anyone had anticipated in the 1950s). With so much land being taken
away for the highways, the only way to justify it and to make it
politically palatable was for the Federal and State governments to
outright purchase all of the land. There could be no question of
just having an easement
for the highway and
its right-of-way. All of the land within the right-of-way would be
permanently owned by the governments, until such time that they
decided to get rid of the highway and sell the land.
In some places, "highway" is a synonym for "road" or "street", and
in some cases, the word "highway" is simply used in cases of
carelessness and laziness on the part of the speaker, who believes
that "street", "road", and "highway" are all synonomous and uses
them accordingly. On the other hand, in another example, the
California Motor Vehicle Code § 360 states: "'Highway' is a way or
place of whatever nature, publicly maintained and open to the use
of the public for purposes of vehicular travel. Highway includes
street." The California Supreme Court has held that
"the definition of 'highway' in the Vehicle Code is used for
special purposes of that act," and that canals of the town of
California, are "highways" also entitled to be maintained with
state highway funds.
The Federal and State governments are trying to improve their
national highway systems by repaving highways, widening highways,
replacing bridges, and reconstructing some interchanges. Many
being converted to parclo
being converted to SPUIs
interchange) or to parclos to reduce interchange congestion.
Arguably, the most famous United States highway is U.S. Route 66
is immortalized in the song Route
, and by the legendary TV series Route 66
. Other famous highways in
songs include Highway 61 (Bob Dylan, 1965), Carefree Highway in
Arizona (Gordon Lightfoot, 1974), Colorado Boulevard in Pasadena,
California (Jan & Dean, also Beach Boys, 1964), the song
, named for
a highway in Southern California ("America", 1972), and Blues
Highway in Mississippi (Fred McDowell, 1959).
Zimbabwe uses two types of highway, which are called autofamba and
autoruwendo. Zimbabwe has an excellent road network, but it is
For information on the history and local styles of highways around
the world, refer to
- Black's Law Dictionary
- Whereas the California Vehicle Code, Sections 360, 590, define
a "highway" as only a way open for use of motor vehicles, the
California Supreme Court has held that "the definition of 'highway'
in the Vehicle Code is used for special purposes of that act," and
that canals in the town of Venice, California, are "highways" that
are entitled to be maintained with state highway funds.
- In England and Wales, a "Public Highway" is an road or footpath
over which the public has the right of access, i.e. the opposite of
a "private road".
- Chinese highways & Expressways ( 中国高速 ) - Page
2 - SkyscraperCity
- DEVELOPMENT GATEWAY_ Expressways Being Built at Frenetic
- John Shadely, Acoustical analysis of the New Jersey
Turnpike widening project between Raritan and East
Brunswick, Bolt Beranek and Newman, 1973
- Michael Hogan, Highway Noise, 3rd Environmental
Pollution Symposium, sponsored by AIAA, ACS, ASME,SAE, held at SRI International, Menlo Park, Ca.
April 17-18, 1973
- Footways and Footpaths - what's the difference in
law? at omgili.com: "A footway is part of the highway set aside
for foot use whereas a footpath is a highway for use only on