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I-140 (proposed number rejected)  North Carolina (link)

This was a proposal for a 32.36 mile upgrade of US 1 leading from I-40 to a future US 421 bypass at Sanford. AASHTO rejected this on April 16, 1999, citing several significant deficiencies along the route. [2note]

In 2002, the number was approved for a Wilmington route; see below.


I-140 (future)  North Carolina (link)

The FHWA approved this designation for Wilmington's planned Northern Outer Loop on Sept. 18, 2002. [7note]

For AASHTO, however, it was still up for review in May 2003, with the definition " Beginning at the intersection of U.S. Route 17 and a new facility being constructed east of Wilmington, then westerly and southwesterly over the facility for 27 miles to the intersection of U.S. Route 17 west of Wilmington." [8note]

The western leg, extending from I-40 to US 421, is under construction and should open in 2004. The eastern leg, extending to US 17 at Scotts Hill, should open sometime in 2005. State officials expected the western leg to have the best chance for FHWA approval, and were pleasantly surprised to see the eastern leg included as well. [6note].

Tug of War for 74

A Wilmington Star article begins: "It's official. Wilmington is getting a second interstate. That's two more than Myrtle Beach, just in case anyone is keeping score." You might wonder how the South will ever rise again if the neighboring Carolinas are bickering over interstates.

But an NC state transportation official believes the I-140 designation could help sway those in charge of Interstate 74 to move its terminus from Myrtle Beach to Wilmington: in the words of a local congressman, "... an excellent hook and lure to pull I-74 further east." [6note]

If this were done, South Carolina's proposed I-174 would be orphaned.

Thanks to the following people (among others) who spread the news of this designation: Jimmy Storey and Scott Kozel.

See also:


I-140  Tennessee (link)

11.17 miles [1note]; from I-40/I-75/TN 162 to Cusick Road (east of US 129), southwest of Knoxville. Interstate 140 is better known as the Pellissippi Parkway for reasons which will soon be explained.


(All history is from a good summary in [10note].)

In the beginning (for our purposes, 1977), the Pellissippi Parkway was a four-lane expressway, access partially controlled, leading from TN 62 to I-40/I-75. Interest in upgrading and extending the parkway as what eventually became I-140 dates back to at least 1970.

In March 1977, officials in Alcoa, Maryville, and Blount County asked the state to extend the Parkway to US 321, a distance of 19.5 miles. Two more requests were made between then and 1980.

In 1986, the state embarked on a Better Roads Program, where increased gas and fuel taxes financed various statewide projects. One of six Bicentennial Parkways in the 1986 Urgent Highway Needs Plan was the parkway extension, now being called Interstate 140. I-140 would be a four-lane freeway extending 19.5 miles from I-40/75 to US 321 in east Blount County.

In 1992, I-140 was completed between Northshore Drive in Knox County and US 129. In 1997, it was completed between Northshore Drive and I-40/75, including a new interchange there. A few years later, a short extension eastward to Cusick Road was completed. As of August 2003, another short extension to TN 33 (Old Knoxville Highway) is under construction.

A longer 140? Not so fast

In mid-2002, Tennessee Gov. Don Sundquist approved an extension of I-140 to US 321 (between Maryville and Walland) in his 2002-2003 highway plan. This extension had been in the state's Long Range Transportation Plan since at least 1995. [10note]. One reason put forth in favor: to help tourists get to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

The 4.4-mile extension would be a four-lane freeway, with interchanges at SR 33, US 411, and US 321. [11note]

On June 7, 2002, advocacy group Citizens Against the Pellissippi Parkway (CAPPE) filed suit to "halt all planning, financing, contracting, land acquisition and construction" of the highway in Nashville. CAPPE contended the route's impact had not been sufficiently studied. [3note] In July 2002, A U.S. District Court judge quickly ordered a halt to all work between TN 33 and US 321 -- the eastern 4 miles of the 7 mile extension. [4note]

One reason for the contention arose from an unofficial name for I-140: "The Governor's Road to his house in Townsend." In other words, the idea that the governor was using TDOT to build a quicker route to his residence. [5note]

In Nov. 2003, TDOT Commissioner Gerald Nicely announced that the extension would go forward. As for CAPPE, he said: "We would hope that the group will work with us. But if they don't, on road projects you get used to being sued." [9note] :bp See also:


  1. Route Log and Finder List - Interstate Highways, FHWA, Oct. 31, 2002.
  2. AASHTO SCOH. Report to the Special Committee on Route Numbering to the Executive Committee. April 17, 1999.
  3. "Suit filed to halt extension." Daily Beacon (Univ. of Tenn.), June 21, 2002. Thanks to Jeffrey Napier.
  4. "Parkway construction halted temporarily, appeal expected." Daily Beacon (Univ. of Tenn.), June 23, 2002. Thanks to Jeffrey Napier.
  5. Napier, Jeffrey. "I-475 & I-140 in TN." Personal email, June 30, 2002.
  6. "Outer Loop named Wilmington's 2nd interstate." Wilmington [N. C.] Star, Sept. 19, 2002.
  7. "Budget includes highway project." Wilmington [N. C.] Star, Sept. 23, 2002. (Thanks to Scott Kozel)
  8. American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) Standing Committee on Highways (SCOH). SCOH Business Agenda. May 9, 2003.
  9. "Beltway OK'd: Orange Route needed, says state highway chief; Pellissippi extension, too." Knoxville News-Sentinel, Nov. 11, 2003.
  10. Center for Transportation Research, Univ. of Tennessee. "Tennessee Department of Transportation 15 Project Case Study: Project Assessment Final Report/Pellissippi Parkway Extension." August 2003.
  11. Tennessee Department of Transportation. "TDOT Announces Decision on Pellissippi Parkway Extension." Nov. 10, 2003.