- Interstate 95 in Delaware
John F. Kennedy Memorial Highway
2006Traffic Count and Mileage Report]
Delaware, Interstate 95runs diagonally from the border with Pennsylvaniain northeast to the border with Maryland. Between the Maryland state line and exit 5, I-95 is also designated as the Delaware Turnpikeand the John F. Kennedy Memorial Highway. Along with its auxiliaries, I-95 is the only Interstate highway in the state. Only two other states, Maine, and Rhode Islandshare this distinction.
The route is the most heavily-traveled highway in Delaware, with peak average daily traffic at 182,853 (DelDOT 2006 study). Traffic backups are common, with the exit four interchange (
Delaware Route 1) named the worst intersection in the state.
Bolded cities are officially-designated
control citiesfor signs.
Interstate 95 crosses into Delaware from Maryland, where it is known as the
John F. Kennedy Memorial Highway, as a six-lane highway south of the city of Newark. Almost immediately after crossing the state line, there is a $4.00 toll plaza for both the northbound and southbound lanes. After the toll plaza, I-95 widens to eight lanes. It then features an interchange with Delaware Route 896, which runs northbound to Newark and the University of Delawareand southbound to U.S. Route 301, which heads south towards the Chesapeake Bay Bridge.
westbound, which intersects DE 7 at an interchange.
Interstate 95 then passes through the Churchman's Marsh before reaching Delaware's most complex interchange with
Delaware Route 141, U.S. Route 202, Interstate 295, and Interstate 495. The carriageways of I-95 split and the northbound ramp providing access to DE 141 southbound by way of Airport Road splits off first. Shortly after, the northbound ramp providing access to Interstate 295 and DE 141 northbound branches off from the main northbound lanes of I-95, paralleling the highway for quite a distance. Interstate 95 features cloverleaf connections with southbound collector-distributor lanes with DE 141 and US 202. It is here that U.S. Route 202 begins a concurrency with Interstate 95 that continues through the city of Wilmington. Interstate 95 then features connections to both I-295 northbound, which heads towards the Delaware Memorial Bridgeand the New Jersey Turnpike, and I-495, which bypasses Wilmington to the east, passing through the Port of Wilmington.
Past I-295 and I-495, Interstate 95, along with US 202, narrow to six lanes and head toward the city of Wilmington. They pass over the marshes of the
Christina Riverand then pass by Frawley Stadium, home of the Wilmington Blue Rocksbaseball team. The interstate then passes over the Amtrak Northeast Corridorand then a part of the city of Wilmington on a high viaduct. It features ramps that connect to Delaware Route 4and Delaware Route 48in Downtown Wilmington.
Interstate 95 narrows to a four-lane highway and then dives into a below street level alignment. It features ramps which provide access to
Delaware Route 52. The highway then crosses the Brandywine Creek and passes through northern parts of the city. It then heads to an interchange with the Concord Pike, where US 202 heads north, splitting from I-95, and Delaware Route 202heads south into the city on Concord Avenue.
At this point, Interstate 95 leaves the city limits of Wilmington and enters the suburban
Brandywine Hundredarea. It heads northeast, closely following a CSXrail line for the next few miles. It first follows the line to the west, but then crosses over it and runs to the east of it. I-95 then interchanges with Delaware Route 3(Marsh Road). It continues to head to the northeast and meets Harvey Road at a partial interchange, with only a northbound exit and a southbound entrance.
Interstate 95 continues towards Claymont, where it features a diamond interchange with
Delaware Route 92. Interstate 495 also merges into northbound I-95 within this interchange. A short distance past this interchange, Interstate 95 crosses the border into Pennsylvania.
*Interstate 295 is the connector from I-95 to the
Delaware Memorial Bridgeand the New Jersey Turnpike, and a bypass route of Philadelphia. Once in New Jersey, I-295 continues northeast to Trenton.
*Interstate 495 is a bypass of Wilmington. I-495 runs from I-95 south of Wilmington near Newport, along the Delaware River north, before merging back in with I-95 at the Delaware/Pennsylvania state border. US 13 runs parallel to the highway, crossing I-495 at both the north and south ends.
Delaware Turnpikeportion of Interstate 95 was first planned in the 1950s following the completion of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, Delaware Memorial Bridge, and New Jersey Turnpike. The state of Delaware originally wanted to build a toll road that would follow U.S. Route 13/U.S. Route 40 and connect to a proposed tolled Maryland Expressway that would follow the present-day U.S. Route 301corridor to the Chesapeake Bay Bridge. [http://www.phillyroads.com/roads/de-turnpike/ Delaware Turnpike (I-95)] URL accessed 2 July 2008] However, the plan was changed for Maryland and Delaware to construct a toll road that would provide a more direct connection to Baltimore and Washington, D.C.that would be part of Interstate 95. Unlike other toll roads, such as the Pennsylvania Turnpikeand New Jersey Turnpike, it would be built to present day Interstate standards. DelDOT built the Delaware Turnpike between 1960 and 1963 with a dedication by President John F. Kennedyon November 15, 1963, just one week before his assassination in the Dallas motorcade. As a result, both the Delaware Turnpike and connecting Northeast Toll Road in Maryland were named the John F. Kennedy Memorial Highway.
The Wilmington Expressway section of Interstate 95 was first planned in 1955 along with what would become Interstate 495. Construction on this segment began in 1963, around the time the Delaware Turnpike was completed. The road was completed between the Delaware Turnpike and U.S. Route 202 (Concord Pike) in 1967 and from the Concord Pike to the Pennsylvania border in 1968. [http://www.phillyroads.com/roads/I-95_DE/ Wilmington Expressway (I-95)] URL accessed 2 July
Since the completion of Interstate 95 in Delaware, many changes have occurred to the highway. The original four-lane Delaware Turnpike was widened to six lanes in 1972 and to eight lanes in the early 1980s. In 1976, tolls at interchanges along the Delaware Turnpike were removed. [http://www.phillyroads.com/roads/de-turnpike/ Delaware Turnpike (I-95)] URL accessed 2 July
Since 2000, DelDOT officials have proposed rerouting I-95 back onto I-495 in the same arrangement used between 1978 and 1982, and renaming the current I-95 through Wilmington as Interstate 95 Business, like that on
Interstate 83in York, Pennsylvania. The mayor of Wilmington staunchly rejected the proposal.
In 2007, the Delaware Department of Transportation announced that they would be widening a a part of I-95 to five lanes in each direction for a total of ten lanes. Northbound, the new fifth lane will run from the SR-1 interchange at exit 4 to the I-495 split just south of the city of Wilmington. Southbound, the new fifth lane will run from the SR-141 interchange at exit 5 to just south of the Churchman's Road bridge where I-95 crosses SR-58. Construction began in May 2007 and is expected to be completed in November 2008.
The entire route is in New Castle County.
* [http://www.aaroads.com/delaware/i-095.htm I-95 at AARoads.com]
* [http://www.i95.deldot.gov I-95 Widening]
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