CT 25
  • Length 28.59 miles
  • From I-95 in Bridgeport
  • To US 202 in Brookfield
Photo for Route 25/8 exit on I-95 NBRoute 25 gets top billing on I-95 approaching the 25/8 freeway. Photo taken in 2006 by Kurumi.

Route 25 begins overlapped with the Route 8 freeway, gradually widening to 10 lanes where routes 25 and 8 diverge. It forks northwest on its own six-lane alignment that ends at Route 111.

At I-84, exit 11, is a three-level interchange and short freeway stub that was intended for Route 25's northern terminus. However, the rest of the freeway was cancelled, and Route 25 continues north from Route 111 as a two-lane surface road.

In the past, Route 25 extended as far as US 44 in Canton; that stretch of road is now part of US 202.

CT 25 History

In the 1920s, the main road from Bridgeport to Newtown via Monroe was called state highway 122. In 1932, Route 25 was created, incorporating Route 122 and other roads north.

Alignment changes, pre-expressway

The 1932 version of Route 25 extended 59.53 miles from Bridgeport to Torrington. It was one of the longest highways in Connecticut.

Its alignment, from south to north:

For about 20 years, Route 25 intersected Route 8 not in Bridgeport, but in Torrington. This could win you a bar bet.

In 1932, the Hawleyville Road portion of today's Route 25 (near future I-84 exit 9) was called Route 25A. By 1934, Route 25 was rerouted there, away from Currituck Road, and Route 25A was deleted.

On April 28, 1943, in the interest of simplifying the area highway network, Route 25 was moved from Bridgewater (the Route 133 and Route 67 alignment) to meet US 7 at Brookfield Four Corners (where Route 25 ends today). It then overlapped with US 7 into New Milford, then continued to Torrington as before. This left the highway a bit shorter, at 58.67 miles.

In Litchfield, there are two segments of "Old Route 25", east of Goslee Road and west of Morris Road, that are evident only from wide spots in the road where trees haven't grown back. The first alignment appears on Google Maps, but is not drivable.

In 1963, Route 25 was extended further along present-day US 202 to US 44 in Canton, for a length of 71 miles. The extension replaced a segment of Route 4 that was shifted southward.

On May 1, 1974, US 202 got its present route, and now Route 25 ends in Brookfield.

The Route 25 Freeway

The state has planned since the late 1950s to upgrade Route 25 to a freeway linking Bridgeport and Danbury via Newtown and I-84. There have been two catchy slogans: "25 by 65", advocating finishing the route by 1965, and "25 to 84 by 85", the reprise. The slogans were apparently insufficiently catchy; 25 never reached I-84.

The state started funding the first segment, from I-95 to Lindley Street, with a $5.2 million appropriation in 1959. With follow-up funds of $8 million in 1961 and $16.1 million in 1963, the nearly $30 million was sufficient to start construction.

The portion of Route 25 overlapping Route 8 opened in sections between 1969 and 1972. Construction in Bridgeport and Trumbull started in the early 1970s, but was halted in 1973 by Gov. Thomas Meskill over concerns about how the interchanges with the Merritt Parkway would affect the Parkway's character. The remainder of the Route 25 expressway, extending to Route 111, opened in 1982.

Planning in Monroe and Newtown

Meanwhile, the state continued planning for the approximately 9.5 miles from Route 111 to I-84 in Newtown.

In 1958, the plan in Monroe called for a four-lane freeway, built to Interstate standards, with an interchange at Route 111 and one or two more interchanges in town. A detailed alignment was not yet discussed.

In 1969, the General Assembly authorized funds for engineering the relocation of Route 25, and in Jan. 1971 a corridor hearing was held in Monroe. At that time, the location south of Route 111 had already been determined, and design work on the northern terminus (I-84 exit 11) was also complete.

The state presented three alternatives and endorsed one which appeared to have the least impact while serving the greatest traffic need. This alignment stayed east of current Route 25 (Main Street), but remained close by until Upper Stepney, where it would intersect an extended Route 110. Then the expressway would extend nearly true north, until it veered west slightly ahead of Sugarloaf Road to intersect I-84 at exit 11.

However, at the time there were no funds for building the road, only for studying it. The state's 1975 Master Transportation Plan included the expressway, at a length of 9.5 miles and cost estimated at $65 million.

In 1978, the state environmental protection commission ruled that two segments of Route 25 could be built; however, to meet air control standards, they could not open until February 1983, and theoretically would have to close eight years later. This ruling was later amended; construction resumed in the late 1970s, and Route 25 opened to Route 111 on Feb. 1, 1982. The old surface Route 25 became part of Route 111 and Main Street. Route 25 did not close in 1991.

Although several alternatives for completing Route 25 were studied in the 1980s, funding problems helped cause the state to abandon expressway plans in 1993. Smaller-scale improvements, up to a four-lane undivided upgrade, are still being contemplated; see "Future", below.

I-84 Exit 11 was to cap Route 25

The Route 34 interchange at I-84 Exit 11, constructed in 1973, was the planned northern terminus of the Route 25 expressway. Since no expressway will be built, current plans for I-84 in Newtown call for dismantling exit 11 and building a diamond interchange connecting to an extended Wasserman Way. (See "Future", below, for more information).

CT 25 Future

Widening to four lanes (undivided) planned, but no expressway

The current vision for Route 25 is a four-lane road from the end of the expressway at Route 111, through Monroe and Newtown, to Mile Hill Road (SR 860). Turning lanes would be added at major intersections, including routes 59 and 111. The project would cost about $90 million. The state filed an Environmental Assessment for this plan on Oct. 31, 1997, and held public hearings in September 1998.

Route 25 in central Newtown and northward will not be widened; instead, thru traffic will use Mile Hill Road and Wasserman Way, a new bypass road through the former Fairfield Hills State Hospital property, leading to Route 34 near I-84 exit 11. The bypass road is already complete.

In late 2001, the state removed the "Bridgeport" control city from signs on I-84 for Route 25 at Exit 9. Instead, new signs recommend Exit 11 and the above bypass for Bridgeport traffic. Exit 9 signs now only cite Brookfield as a destination.

Exit 11 to be downsized

Exit 11, the three-level interchange that was to connect Route 25 to I-84, will be dismantled and replaced with a simpler diamond interchange, according to plans.

As of the 2000 ConnDOT long-range plan, all ramps would be deleted except the flyover ramp to I-84 westbound. A new I-84 WB exit ramp would connect to the flyover at a T-intersection (probably signalized). South of there, the flyover would become a two-way road, using the existing bridge structure to cross I-84. On the south side of I-84, two new ramps would provide access to and from I-84 eastbound, forming a functional diamond (though a little misshapen.

South of the I-84 eastbound ramps, the roadway would diverge from the previous one-way northbound flyover approach and veer south-southwest to meet Route 34 and Wasserman Way at a four-way intersection. All leftover parts of the old Exit 11 would be torn down.

I-84 exit 9 to be revamped

As part of planned improvements for I-84 in the area, the interchange with Route 25, built in 1961, would see geometric improvements for safety. The I-84 EB exit ramp would be lengthened and widened. The entrance loop and exit ramp to/from I-84 WB would be made smoother and moved to intersect Route 25 directly across from Old Hawleyville Road. Turning lanes would be added at the ramp intersections.

New interchange at Whitney Avenue in Trumbull sought

Daniels Farm Road (SR 734) connects Route 127 to Exit 9 on Route 25. Over the years, it has seen significant traffic, conflicting with residential and school use of the road. In 2001, local officials started pressing for additional ramps at nearby Whitney Avenue to handle some of the congestion.

In 2003, State Senator Bill Finch introduced legislation to issue bonds for financing the design and construction of Whitney Avenue ramps. Construction has not started yet.

CT 25 More...

In Nov. 1974, the stretch of Route 25 between Bridgeport and Newtown was named the Col. Henry A. Mucci Highway. Col. Mucci, a West Point graduate, survived the Pearl Harbor attack, and later risked his life to rescue 500 American soldiers from a Japanese POW camp at the end of the Bataan death march in World War II.

He was born in Bridgeport and returned there after the war, running for Congress and eventually presiding over an auto dealership. He retired to Melbourne, Fla. and passed away in 1997.

In 2005, Benjamin Bratt starred as Col. Mucci on film in The Great Raid.

CT 25 Sources