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I-271  Ohio (link)

46.06 miles [1note]; from I-71 near Weymouth to I-90 near Euclid. Interstate 271 is a far bypass around Cleveland. It was completed around 1972. [6note] I-271's official song is the Pretenders' "My City was Gone."

I-271 overlaps I-480 for 5.84 miles, the only instance where two 3-digit interstates do this. It was to have been paired with I-290 as well, but that highway was cancelled.

In the early 1960s, the planned route for I-271 was eastward from I-71 along OH 17, turning northward near Maple Heights. [4note]

In 1998, express lanes were completed in the median of I-271 between I-480/US 422 and I-90. [10note]

The Great White North

A 1970s Ohio/Ontario plan proposed a 47-mile bridge over Lake Erie, from I-271 in Willowick, Ohio, to Port Stanley, Ontario, and contining as a freeway to the Route 401 near London.

The single-span bridge would have carried four lanes, with two different suspension bridge crossings of shipping channels. The cost estimate in the 1970s was about $1 billion, and the toll would have been large. The above alignment was the most direct of three studied; the others slanted to the east and west, the longest one about 70 miles. [3note]

See also:


I-471  Ohio (link)

5.02 miles [1note]; from I-71 in Cincinnati across the Ohio River to I-275 in Kentucky. The freeway continues south as KY 471 but is still signed I-471. [8note] Interstate 471 was completed on Sept. 18, 1981. [7note]


The origin of Interstate 471 was the "Riverside Expressway" plan, a loop highway to connect eastern Cincinnati to I-75 in Covington, Ky. via Newport. This dates back to at least 1958, when AASHO approved the I-471 number for this loop. [9note] The basic route:

"from a new bridge to be built east of the L&N Bridge in Newport and along the northern end of Newport, crossing the Licking River into Covington over a new bridge to be built north of the Fourth Street Bridge and then continuing through Covington to Philadelphia Street with exit ramps at Scott, Greenup and Russell streets." [7note]
The proposal was quite unpopular, attracting opposition from the mayors of Covington and Newport, along with the Kentucky Post. They said I-471 would destroy houses and ruin plans to redevelop the riverfront. The proposal was dropped. [7note]

In 1962, I-471 reappeared on the drawing board, as a north-south spur from Highland Heights to Newport. (This is part of today's I-471.) By 1967, the plan for today's I-471 was mostly finalized. Through the 1970s, however, there was controversy over where to locate ramps in Newport, which led to some temporary ramps being built.

In 1977, the Daniel Carter Beard Bridge, named after the Northern Kentucky resident who founded the American Boy Scouts, opened over the Ohio River. Most of I-471 was still under construction. Two sections opened in late December 1980, and the final segment was dedicated on Sept. 18, 1981. Construction on permanent ramps in Newport, however, continued until August 1989. [7note]

See also:


  1. Route Log and Finder List - Interstate Highways, FHWA, Oct. 31, 2002.
  2. Kozel, Scott. "Lake Erie Crossing." Online posting, misc.transport.road, Oct. 1, 1997.
  3. Fannin, Marc. "Ohio in 1962." Web page, http://www.roadfan.com/1962ohio.html.
  4. Simpson, John. "Route 271." http://pages.prodigy.net/john.simpson/highways/271.html (15 Nov. 2003)
  5. "I-471's birth slow to come: Plans and routes changed many times." Kentucky Post, Nov. 30, 1998.
  6. Gulyas, Sandor. "I-471 Photos." (Photos by Dan Moraseski.) http://www.roadfan.com/i471.html (15 Nov. 2003)
  7. Summers, Stephen. "Ohio [interstate numbering]." http://www.nwindianahwys.homestead.com/OHIO.html. (15 Nov. 2003)
  8. Fannin, Marc. "I-271 Express Lanes opening dates." Personal email, June 1, 2004.