Future Interstate Corridors
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78,000 mile Inter-Regional Highway System [1941]
Transportation Research Board Future Interstate Study
Conceptual Future Interstate Corridors
New I-49/I-220 Interchange {KSLA News 12 Shreveport LA}
 National Highway System High Priority Corridors
Future I-49 Corridor
Future I-69 Corridor
Future I-22 Corridor X
Future I-11 Canamex Corridor
Future I-14 Central Texas Corridor/Gulf Coast Strategic Highway/14th Amendment Corridor
Future I-42 [North Carolina]
Future I-87 Raleigh-Norfolk Corridor [North Carolina, Virginia]
Future I-57 [Arkansas]  
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A report titled "Future Options for the National Interstate And Defense Highways" was prepared May 2007 by PB Consult, Inc and Cambridge Systematic for the National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) of the Transportation Research Board (TRB) of the National Academies. The work was sponsored by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). A conclusion was that the capacity of the Interstate System needed to be increase in two parts defined as "expansion" {additional lanes and interchanged} and "extension" {extension of existing or totally new Interstate highways},

System Extent. The application of performance criteria in the context of the growth in demand and the specific functional needs of connections and continuity has indicated the need for an additional 173,000 lane miles of capacity to be added to the 210,000 lane miles of the existing Interstate System....this new capacity would be achieved in two ways:

· Expansion of the existing Interstate System, adding 88,600 lane miles within its existing 212,000 lane miles on 46,800 route miles.

· Extensions of the existing Interstate System, through upgrades of the national highway system (NHS) and related corridors, converting 15,000 route miles to the Interstate, involving an additional 84,400 lane miles.

In total, the future Interstate System would supply 385,000 total lane miles of capacity along a total system length of nearly 62,000 route miles. Accommodating the forecasted travel at the performance level used in this analysis implies the addition of about 5,760 lane miles per year.

The "extension" of the Interstate system ranges for the actual extension of existing Interstate routes (like I-49 and I-69 are being extended) to the actual creation of totally new numbered Interstates, most following existing National Highway System (NHS) corridors, but also along non-NHS corridors to increase capacity to relieve BOTH congested urban and rural routes. The new Interstate mileage corridors amout to about 15,000 miles or more of upgraded NHS corridors and completely new Interstate Corridors for a total 67,000 mile Interstate system. Many of the routes were suggested in the large 78,000 mile system studied in 1941 as part of the old Inter-Regional System prior to the approval of the 47,000 mile Interstate system in 1957. Section 6021 of the new Fixing America's Surface Transportation Act of 2015 has commissioned the Transportation Research Board to conduct a detailed study on the actions needed to upgrade the original "Dwight D. Eisenhower" National System of Interstate and Defense Highways to meet the growing new highway demands of the 21st century. In the 2007 study, the major freight truck corridor and the truck traffic bottleneck cities are shown in the tow maps below.

The Congress decided to completely study the need improvements to the Interstate System for the 21st Century, INCLUDING upgrading National Highway System (and some non-NHS corridor were needed) to Interstate Highway standards both by extending existing Interstate or adding totally new numbered Interstates (like I-42 and I-87 in North Carolina, I-14 in Texas, I-57 in Arkansas) in the 2015 FAST Act. The Transportation Research Board suggest an additional 15,000 miles in its 2007 study:

Section 6021 of the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act of 2015


(a) FUTURE INTERSTATE SYSTEM STUDY.—Not later than 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall enter into an agreement with the Transportation Research Board of the National Academies to conduct a study on the actions needed to upgrade and restore the Dwight D. Eisenhower National System of Interstate and Defense Highways to its role as a premier system that meets the growing and shifting demands of the 21st century.

(b) METHODOLOGIES.—In conducting the study, the Transportation Research Board shall build on the methodologies examined and recommended in the report prepared for the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials titled ‘‘National Cooperative Highway Research Program Project 20–24(79): Specifications for a National Study of the Future 3R, 4R, and Capacity Needs of the Interstate System’’, dated December 2013.

(c) CONTENTS OF STUDY.—The study— (1) shall include specific recommendations regarding the features, standards, capacity needs, application of technologies, and intergovernmental roles to upgrade the Interstate System, including any revisions to law (including regulations) that the Transportation Research Board determines appropriate; and (2) is encouraged to build on the institutional knowledge in the highway industry in applying the techniques involved in implementing the study.

(d) CONSIDERATIONS.—In carrying out the study, the Transportation Research Board shall determine the need for reconstruction and improvement of the Interstate System by considering—(1) future demands on transportation infrastructure determined for national planning purposes, including commercial and private traffic flows to serve future economic activity and growth; (2) the expected condition of the current Interstate System over the period of 50 years beginning on the date of enactment of this Act, including long term deterioration and reconstruction needs; (3) features that would take advantage of technological capabilities to address modern standards of construction, maintenance, and operations, for purposes of safety, and system management, taking into further consideration system performance and cost;(4) those National Highway System routes that should be added to the existing Interstate System to more efficiently serve national traffic flows; and (5) the resources necessary to maintain and improve the Interstate System, including the resources required to upgrade the National Highway System routes identified in paragraph (4) to Interstate standards.

(e) CONSULTATION.—In carrying out the study, the Transportation Research Board— (1) shall convene and consult with a panel of national experts, including operators and users of the Interstate System and private sector stakeholders; and (2) is encouraged to consult with—

(A) the Federal Highway Administration;

(B) States;

(C) planning agencies at the metropolitan, State, and regional levels;

(D) the motor carrier industry;

(E) freight shippers;

(F) highway safety groups; and

(G) other appropriate entities.

(f) REPORT.—Not later than 3 years after the date of enactment of this Act, the Transportation Research Board shall submit to the Secretary, the Committee on Environment and Public Works of the Senate, and the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives a report on the results of the study conducted under this section.

(g) FUNDING.—From amounts authorized to carry out the Highway Research and Development Program, the Secretary shall use to carry out this section not more than $5,000,000 for fiscal year 2016.

The Transportation Research Board will investigage new Interstate corridor ranging from the existing Interstate Corridors created by Congress since 1991, and new Interstate freeway upgrades of existing US Routes in the National Highway System. All of these new corridors will be created as alternate relief routes to existing high traffic Interstate highway, to increase the capacity of NHS routes that have increased traffic, and in some cases, to provide new economic trade corridors. Many of these corridors have be recognized as vital since the 1941 study of a 78,000 mile interstate highway system that was the basis for the 45,000 mile system approved in the 1957 Interstate Higway System. The new study will propose totally new Interstate Corridors along non-NHS corridors which are needed to relieve traffic bottlenecks that are growing in the existing Interstate System.

Proposed Interstate Corridors:

  1. Interstate 18, linking New Orleans Louisiana to Lafayette Louisiana and Dallas Texas with branches to Baton Rouge (I-418, I-318) and Port Fourchon (I-518). I-18 becomes the alternative to I-45 and I-10 from Dallas, Houston, Baton Rouge, New Orleans. I-18 becomes the intermodal route serving the Ports Baton Rouge, Port of South Louisiana along the Mississippi River, and the Port of New Orleans.
  2. Interstate 53, linking Lake Charles Louisiana to Alexandria and Monroe, following US 165, then continuing to Pine Bluff Arkansas and Little Rock using I-530 which will be extended to Pine Bluff as the "I-69 Connector".
  3. Interstate 63 replacing the I-73/I-74 designation for the High Priority North-South Corridor created in the 1991 ISTEA, with the new corridor starting from US 131 in Grand Rapids Michigan, to South Bend and Ft Wayne Indiana, then US 68 in the Dayton-Springfield area, then OH 73 to Portsmouth Ohio, US 52 to Huntington West Virginia, US 23 through Kentucky, Virginia, and I-26 in Tennesee to the Port of Charleston South Carolina, providing and alternative I-75. In this new North-South Corridor, the routing of I-73 along US 23 to Columbus and Toledo as well as the extension of I-74 from Cincinatti is eliminated. The part of I-73/I-74 in West Virginia is now designated as Interstate 52 follwing the Future US 52 King Coal Highway.
  4. Interstate 66, extending from the existing I-66 terminating at I-81 in Virginia, then proceeding west using the new US 48/US 33 Corridor H and US 35 to I-70 west of Dayton Ohio, providing an alternative route to I-70 to Washington D.C.
  5. Interstate 68 West Extension from the current I-79/I-68 terminus in Morgantown West Virginia to Moundville West Virginia, following WV 2 to Parkersburg, the US 50 Corridor D to Athens, and finally OH 32 Corridor D to Cincinnati, terminating at the I-275/OH 32 interchange currently being upgraded in the Eastern Corridor project.
  6. Interstate 50 replacing the "I-66" Trans America Corridor created in the 1991 ISTEA from Norforlk Virginia, through Kentucky, to Springfield Missouri then US 400 and US 50 designated as Interstate 60 to Wichita Kansas, Pueblo Colorado and Grand Junction. In this new Trans America Corridor, Interstate 70 is included and would be extended along US 50 through Utah and Nevada to Sacremento California, providing an alternative to I-80 and I-70.
  7. Interstate 76 as an alternative to I-80 and I-90 from Cleveland to Chicago extending the current I-76 west into Ohio, then US 30 through Ohio and Indiana, the a new alignment for the proposed Illianna Expressway in Illinois and Indiana to eliminate the environmental controversy that had effectively cancelled the Illiana project in Illinois.

Future I-50/I-60/I-70 Trans America Corridor, Future I-54
Future I-18/I-12/I-14/I-53 Acadian Xpressway System, Future I-47
Future I-66 Corridor H, Future I-68 Eastern Corridor/Corridor D/Corridor E
Future I-63 Corridor B, Future I-62 King Coal Highway, Future I-73/I-46/I-28
Future I-32, Future I-34, Future I-36, Future I-48, Future I-51
Future I-67, Future I-72, Future I-76 Illiana Corridor