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Interstate 80 in Nebraska: Map

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In the U.S. state of Nebraskamarker, Interstate 80 runs west from Omahamarker to the Wyomingmarker state border, ultimately terminating in San Francisco, Californiamarker. When it completed construction of the stretch of Interstate 80 spanning the state on October 19, 1974, Nebraska was the first state in the nation to complete its mainline Interstate Highway System.

Nebraska has more than fifty exits along Interstate 80. According to the New York Times there are several notable tourist attractions along Nebraska's section of I-80.

History

Built along the pathway of the Great Platte River Road, I-80 in Nebraska follows the same route as many historic trails, including the Oregon Trail, the California Trail and the Mormon Trail. Starting in 1957 after federal funding was allotted, Nebraskans began planning their interstate construction. Led by the Nebraska State Highway Commission, there were hearings across the state to decide where the route was going to be. Aside from the federally-mandated "control points" in Omaha and Scottsbluffmarker, the route could vary across the state. Dozens of meetings were held in Grand Islandmarker, Kearneymarker and North Plattemarker, among other locations. The commission addressed issues of whether the highway would be north or south of the Platte River or whether it would follow U.S. 30. The South Platte Chamber of Commerce and various cities were very active in these sessions, and debate over where the Interstate would be constructed continued into the 1960s.

After the first contract for building the interstate was awarded in 1957, a section near Gretnamarker was the first section to be completed that year. The first long segment to be opened was a fifty mile section between Dodge Street in Omahamarker and the West Lincoln interchange in Lincolnmarker in 1961. During a "Golden Link" ceremony, the last section of I-80 in Nebraska was completed when a brass connector was inserted in the roadway near Sidneymarker on April 1, 1974. This was designed to keep in tradition with the golden spike on the railroads in 1869.

The total length of the Nebraska section is long, and was completed at a cost of $435 million.

The Interstate passes through 15 counties in the state: Kimballmarker, Cheyennemarker, Deuelmarker, Keithmarker, Lincolnmarker, Dawsonmarker, Buffalomarker, Hallmarker, Hamiltonmarker, Yorkmarker, Sewardmarker, Lancastermarker, Cassmarker, Sarpymarker, and Douglasmarker.

Designated sections

The entirety of the Interstate Highway System was named the "Dwight D. Eisenhower System of Interstate and Defense Highways" in 1990, and the first signage in Nebraska was posted in 1993. Several sections of I-80 in Nebraska have special designations. The I-80 intersection with US-34 has been designated a "Purple Heart Memorial Highway", and South 108th Street bridge over I-80 in Omaha has been designated the "Purple Heart Bridge", both in honor of all recipients of the Purple Heart. A section of I-80 in Nebraska is also designated as a Blue Star Memorial Highway.

Legacy

The beginning of the I-80 construction in Nebraska in 1957 led the Nebraska Legislature to split the Department of Roads and Irrigation in order to create three separate agencies in the state, including the Department of Motor Vehicles, Department of Water Resources and the Department of Roads, which was the first Nebraska agency solely responsible for highway planning, construction, and maintenance in Nebraska history.

Interstate construction led the state to focus on other highways in Nebraska, as well. Surfaced shoulders, new safety sections beyond shoulders and other developments across the state were attributed to the influence of the Interstate. The 1965 state Legislature also authorized a study of the needs of every public road in Nebraska, including state highways, county roads, and city streets.

Details

In Nebraska, I-80 has 81 interchange, 442 bridges are on or over the roadway and 25 rest areas and one scenic overlook, each spaced 35-50 miles apart for convenience. The I-80 rights-of-way in Nebraska feature 28 types of grasses and forbs, 31 types of shrubs, 12 varieties of coniferous trees, and 39 types of deciduous trees are planted on the of I-80 in Nebraska. There are also 570 informational and directional signs along the way.

Speeds

The following are speed limits that have existed on I-80 in Nebraska since it was opened in 1957.

Speed limits on I-80 in Nebraska
Year Speed limit(s)
1960 on the rural interstate.
1964 for cars and for trucks in rural areas.
1980 national speed limit, effective December 31, 1980.
1987 on the rural interstate.
1995 on the rural interstate.


Exit list

County Location Mile # Destinations Notes
Kimballmarker 0.48 1 - Pine Bluffsmarker
8.46 8
20.70 20
22.69 22 Kimballmarker (L-53E)
29.76 29
Cheyennemarker 38.96 38
48.92 48
55.37 55
Sidneymarker 59.92 59
69.63 69
76.61 76
Deuelmarker 85.22 85
95.02 95 - Julesburgmarker, Oshkoshmarker
101.19 101 , Julesburgmarker
102.59 102  – Denvermarker
107.36 107
Keithmarker 117.25 117
Ogallalamarker 126.69 126
133.96 133
145.65 145
Lincolnmarker 158.01 158
164.52 164
North Plattemarker 177.16 177
179.22 179
190.45 190
198.98 199
Dawsonmarker Gothenburgmarker 211.79 211
Cozadmarker 222.46 222
231.10 231
237.20 237
248.53 248
Buffalomarker 257.00 257
263.67 263
Kearneymarker 272.60 272 , Archway Monumentmarker
279.90 279
285.63 285
291.36 291
Hallmarker 300.10 300
305.66 305
312.07 312
314.11 314 Locust Street – Grand Islandmarker
Hamiltonmarker 318.16 318
324.16 324
332.17 332
338.14 338
Yorkmarker 342.13 342
348.11 348
Yorkmarker 353.10 353
360.13 360
Sewardmarker 366.15 366
369.14 369
373.11 373
379.11 379
382.11 382 Milfordmarker (L-80H)
388.13 388
Lancastermarker Lincolnmarker 395.61 395
396.36 396 Westbound exit is via exit 397
397.27 397 West end of US 77 overlap
399.03 399 Lincoln Municipal Airportmarker
401.04 401 Signed as exits 401A (south/east) and 401B (west)
403.49 403 27th Street – State Fair Park
405.76 405 East end of US 77 overlap
409.76 409
Cassmarker 420.94 420
426.07 426  – Mahoney State Park, Ashlandmarker, South Bendmarker
Sarpymarker 432.95 432
439.20 439
440.65 440
442.90 442 126th Street, Harrison Street
Douglasmarker Omahamarker 444 Q Street Westbound exit only
445.05 445
445 I Street Westbound exit and eastbound entrance
445.98 446
448.30 448 84th Street
449.31 449 72nd Street
450.32 450 60th Street
451.84 451 42nd Street
452.86 452
453.05 453 24th Street Eastbound exit and westbound entrance
454.15 454 13th Street


Auxiliary routes

Interstate 80 has three auxiliary routes in Nebraska. One is a loop around the city of Omaha, one is a loop through the city of Omaha, and the other is a spur into Lincoln.

- Interstate 480 is a loop route in Omaha extending from Interstate 29 in Council Bluffs west towards I-80. It serves as the inner of two loops in Omaha. Signed as US 6 for a mile across the Missouri River, when the Interstate meets with the North Freeway and turns south it becomes US 75.

- Interstate 680 is a loop around the city of Omaha. It serves as the outer of the two Omaha loops.

- Interstate 180 is a spur into the city of Lincoln.

See also



Bibliography

  • Mattes, M.J. (1969) The Great Platte River Road. University of Nebraska Press.
  • Frazier, I. (1989) Great Plains. Knopf.
  • Nebraska State Historical Society. Historic Places: The National Register for Nebraska. Published by Nebraskaland Magazine.


References

  1. "Interstate construction in Nebraska." Nebraska Department of Roads. Retrieved 9/23/07.
  2. "Highways 61-100", Nebraska Highways Page. Retrieved 10/14/07.
  3. Winckler, S. (1990) "I-80's Exits To History In Nebraska," New York Times. July 22, 1990. Retrieved 9/23/07.
  4. Winckler, S. (1990) "I-80's Exits To History In Nebraska," New York Times. July 22, 1990. Retrieved 9/23/07.
  5. Koster, G. (1997) A Story of Highway Development in Nebraska. Nebraska Department of Roads. p 64. Retrieved 9/23/07.
  6. Koster, G. (1997) A Story of Highway Development in Nebraska. Nebraska Department of Roads. p 66. Retrieved 9/23/07.
  7. (1961) Nebraska Interstate 80 Lincoln - Omaha. Nebraska Department of Roads. Retrieved 9/23/07
  8. Koster, G. (1997) A Story of Highway Development in Nebraska. Nebraska Department of Roads. p 87. Retrieved 9/23/07.
  9. "Nebraska Interstate 80" Nebraska Roads. Retrieved 9/23/07.
  10. Koster, G. (1997) A Story of Highway Development in Nebraska. Nebraska Department of Roads. p 100. Retrieved 9/23/07.
  11. "Purple Heart Trail," Nebraska Department of Roads. Retrieved 9/23/07.
  12. Koster, G. (1997) A Story of Highway Development in Nebraska. Nebraska Department of Roads. p 67. Retrieved 9/23/07.
  13. Koster, G. (1997) A Story of Highway Development in Nebraska. Nebraska Department of Roads. p 73. Retrieved 9/23/07.
  14. Koster, G. (1997) A Story of Highway Development in Nebraska. Nebraska Department of Roads. p 75. Retrieved 9/23/07.
  15. "Fact Sheet: The Interstate in Nebraska." Nebraska Department of Roads. Retrieved 9/23/07.
  16. Koster, G. (1997) A Story of Highway Development in Nebraska. Nebraska Department of Roads. p 94. Retrieved 9/23/07.
  17. Nebraska Department of Roads, Nebraska Highway Reference Log Book, 2007


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