Open main menu

Interstate 65 in Alabama

Interstate 65 (I-65) meanders across 366 miles (589 km) of the Alabama countryside linking six of the state's ten largest cities. The highway links together many important roadways that make commerce inside and outside of the state's boundaries possible. It starts at Interstate 10 near Mobile. The route passes through the major cities of Montgomery, Birmingham, and Decatur before entering Tennessee in the north near the town of Ardmore.

Interstate 65 marker

Interstate 65
I-65 highlighted in red
Route information
Maintained by ALDOT
Length366.229 mi[1] (589.388 km)
Major junctions
South end I-10 in Mobile
 
North end I-65 / US 31 at Tennessee state line
Location
CountiesMobile, Baldwin, Escambia, Conecuh, Butler, Lowndes, Montgomery, Elmore, Autauga, Chilton, Shelby, Jefferson, Blount, Cullman, Morgan, Limestone
Highway system
  • Alabama Highways
SR 64SR 65

The entire Alabama portion of I-65 is dedicated as Heroes Highway,[2] in honor of the CIA officer Johnny "Mike" Spann and all of the people who died during the September 11 attacks.

Route descriptionEdit

I-65 starts its northward journey in Mobile at an interchange with Interstate 10, not far from the Gulf of Mexico. From there it runs northeast, intersecting with I-165 in Prichard, Alabama and crossing the Mobile River delta at the General W.K. Wilson Jr. Bridge. En route to Montgomery, it passes county seats Evergreen (Conecuh County) and Greenville (Butler County). In the case of a hurricane evacuation on Alabama's coast, I-65 can be converted to an evacuation route where all lanes flow in the northbound direction from Mobile to Montgomery. This process is known as contra-flow. The terrain on this stretch of road is slightly hilly, aside from a stretch in southern Conecuh County near Castleberry, where the road is slightly mountainous as it descends over 400 feet (120 m) into the southern plains of Alabama.

 
Billboard along I-65 North, north of Prattville and just south of mile marker 191.[3]

At Montgomery, it intersects the southern terminus of I-85 and crosses the Alabama River north of the city. The Hyundai Motor Company's automotive plant in Montgomery is located just off I-65. It can be accessed using the Pintlala-Hope Hull exit (number 164).

At Chilton County, I-65 enters the Birmingham, Alabama, metropolitan area. Approximately halfway between Montgomery and Birmingham, it passes Clanton the county seat, where the water tower, visible from the road, is shaped and painted to resemble a huge peach. Between mile markers 212 and 219, I-65 was designated "War on Terror Memorial Highway" in 2014.

From mile marker 242 to 290 I-65 carries at least 6 lanes of traffic. I-65 intersects I-459 in Hoover, then passes through the cities of Vestavia Hills and Homewood, which often generate heavy traffic. As the interstate passes by downtown Birmingham, south-bound travelers have a view of the Vulcan statue atop Red Mountain. At the north edge of downtown, I-65 intersects I-20/I-59 with a cross-over interchange, often called "Malfunction Junction".

North of Birmingham at mile 266, interchange ramps provide access to parallel US 31. It is here that I-65 meets the eastern terminus of I-22, which heads northwest to Memphis, Tennessee, filling in a gap in the Interstate system. The interstate then continues 98 miles (158 km) in the general direction of Huntsville, passing the city of Cullman on the way. After entering the Decatur Metropolitan Area, in southern Morgan County, the interstate passes Decatur. The highway connects the Decatur and Huntsville Metropolitan Areas as it crosses Wheeler Lake (Tennessee River) on a 2.6-mile (4.2 km) bridge. The interstate emerges again into the fringes of Decatur, in an open area of seemingly "endless" cotton fields where it intersects, inside Decatur, with SR 20, US 72 Alternate, and the spur-route, I-565 to Huntsville.

Between Walkers Chapel Road in Fultondale and the Tennessee River in Decatur (Limestone County), I-65 has been designated the "Ronald Reagan Memorial Highway". The sign designating the north end of this portion of road cites Reagan's speech in Decatur on July 4, 1984. The interstate then continues, passing Athens, and merges with US 31. The 2 routes travel concurrently approximately 12 miles to the Tennessee state line.

In the Birmingham/Hoover vicinity, a plan to widen the interstate from North Birmingham to Alabaster has been proposed.[citation needed] The project is to widen the interstate by adding a HOV lane and keeping the original 3 lanes making it four lanes in each direction. This is planned to stretch to the Pelham area. From there on the interstate will widen from 2 lanes each way to 3 lanes each way into the Helena/Alabaster area.

Near the northern border of Alabama with Tennessee on southbound I-65 is located the Alabama Welcome Center and rest area. The unique feature of this rest area compared to others is the existence of a large Saturn IB rocket erected on the site as a memorial to Alabama's—and in particular, Huntsville's—contribution to NASA's space exploration.[4]

HistoryEdit

In 1997, at Georgiana (Exit 114), honoring legendary country musician and Alabama native Hank Williams, the interstate was designated as Hank Williams' Memorial "Lost Highway", after one of his songs. This designation continues northward until mile 179 north of Montgomery. From the state's capital, I-65 doglegs northwards, bypassing Prattville and Clanton before going through Metropolitan Birmingham, Alabama. From exit 242 to 290, this highway carries at least six lanes of traffic. A portion of the interstate running through Birmingham, has been nicknamed "Malfunction Junction" for its numerous wrecks. These accidents include two separate occasions of the support beams melting after crashes by 18-wheelers, and the numerous collisions that happen every year, result from the junction with I-20 and I-59.

In 2004, following the death of President Ronald Reagan, a lengthy segment of I-65 from Jefferson County to Limestone County was designated the Ronald Reagan Memorial Highway. The sign designating the north end of the segment includes a statement from Reagan's speech at Point Mallard Aquatic Center in nearby Decatur on July 4, 1984.

FutureEdit

Just a few miles north of I-22 will be the new interchange (exit 274), which will be the Corridor X-1 and has been designated as I-422. This loop route will connect I-65 with I-59 northeast of Birmingham and I-20/I-59 southwest of Birmingham, and this will serve as an Interstate Highway bypass of Birmingham, augmenting the existing I-459, which already provides the southern loop of Birmingham. Construction of this interchange is still several years away, but right-of-way is in the process of being acquired to build I-422.

Exit listEdit

CountyLocationmi[5]kmExitDestinationsNotes
MobileMobile0.0000.0000  I-10 – Mississippi, FloridaSouthbound exit and northbound entrance; southern terminus; I-10 exit 20; directional T interchange
1.9303.1061  US 90 (SR 16, Government Boulevard)
3.645.863Airport BoulevardServes Mobile Regional Airport and University of South Alabama
4.487.214Dauphin Street
5.568.955ASpringhill AvenueServes Spring Hill College
5.7529.2575B  US 98 (SR 42, Moffett Road)
Prichard8.41213.5388  US 45 (SR 17, St. Stephens Road) – Prichard, Citronelle, Butler, Meridian
9.64015.5149  I-165 south – Prichard, Downtown MobileI-165 exit 0 northbound; tri-stack interchange
Chickasaw10.61617.08510West Lee Street
Saraland13.06721.02913   SR 158 (Industrial Parkway) / SR 213 – Eight Mile, Saraland
17.39727.99815Celeste Road – Saraland, Citronelle
19.49531.37419  US 43 (SR 13) – Satsuma, Creola
21.50534.60922Sailor Road – Creola
Mobile River
Tensaw River
24.22038.978General W.K. Wilson Jr. Bridge
Baldwin31.79351.16631  SR 225 – Stockton, Spanish Fort
33.93554.61334  SR 59 – Bay Minette, Stockton
37.72460.71137  SR 287 (Gulf Shores Parkway) – Bay Minette, RabunTwo-lane on-ramp for I-65 north towards Montgomery
45.04472.49145Rabun, Perdido
Escambia53.57486.21954  CR 1 (Jack Springs Road)
57.65692.78857  SR 21 – Atmore, Uriah
Barnett Crossroads69.356111.61869  SR 113 – Flomaton, Wallace
Conecuh77.402124.56677  SR 41 – Brewton, Repton
83.372134.17483  CR 7 – Castleberry, Lenox
Evergreen, Conecuh County92.930149.55693  US 84 (SR 12) – Evergreen, Conecuh County, Monroeville
96.509155.31696  SR 83 – Evergreen, Conecuh County, Midway
100.685162.037101  CR 29 – Owassa
Butler107.345172.755107Hank Williams Road – Grace, Garland
113.969183.415114  SR 106 – Georgiana, Starlington
Greenville127.661205.450128  SR 10 (Pineapple Highway) – Greenville, Pine Apple, ButlerSouthern end of SR 10 Truck overlap
130.046209.289130  
   SR 185 / SR 10 Truck east – Greenville
Northern end of SR 10 Truck overlap
Lowndes141.531227.772142  SR 185 – Fort Deposit, Logan
151.108243.185151  SR 97 – Letohatchee, Davenport
157.628253.678158  To US 31 (SR 3, Tyson Road) – Pintlala, Tyson
Montgomery163.792263.598164  US 31 (SR 3) – Pintlala, Hope Hull
Montgomery166   I-85 north to I-685Future southern terminus of Montgomery bypass; future southern terminus of I-85
167.103268.926167  US 80 west (SR 8 west) – SelmaSouthern end of US 80/SR 8 overlap
168.213270.713168     US 80 east / US 82 east (SR 6 east/SR 8 east/SR 21, South Boulevard) to US 231 (SR 53) / US 331 (SR 9)Northern end of US 80/SR 8 overlap; southern end of US 82/SR 6 overlap
169.513272.805169Edgemont AvenueSouthbound exit and northbound entrance
170.093273.738170Fairview Avenue
171.157275.450171   I-85 / I-685 north / Day Street – AtlantaI-85 no number signed; future I-685, exit 0
171.748–
171.824
276.402–
276.524
172Herron Street, Clay Street – Downtown Montgomery
172.013276.828Bridge over the Alabama River
172.725277.974173  To US 231 (North Boulevard)Unsigned SR 152
ElmoreMillbrook175.535282.496176  SR 143 – Millbrook, CoosadaNorthbound exit and southbound entrance
MillbrookPrattville
city line
178.961288.010179   US 82 west (SR 6 west, Cobbs Ford Road) / SR 14 west to Montgomery Toll Road – Millbrook, PrattvilleNorthern end of US 82/SR 6 overlap; southern end of SR 14 overlap
Prattville181.282291.745181  SR 14 east – Prattville, WetumpkaNorthern end of SR 14 overlap
Autauga186.426300.024186  US 31 (SR 3) – Pine Level, Prattville
Chilton200.366322.458200Verbena
Clanton205.340330.463205   US 31 / SR 22 (SR 3) – Clanton, Verbena
208.35335.31208Lake Mitchell Road – Clanton, Lake Mitchell
211.876340.981212  SR 145 (Lay Dam Road) – Clanton, Lay DamPeach Tower exit
219.256352.858219Jemison, Thorsby
ShelbyCalera228.380367.542228  SR 25 (Main Street) – Montevallo, Calera
231.206372.090231   US 31 (SR 3) / SR 3 – Saginaw, Calera, Montevallo
233.976376.548234Shelby County Airport
238.321383.540238  US 31 (SR 3, 1st Street) – Alabaster, Saginaw
Pelham241.841389.205242  CR 52 – Pelham, Helena
246.062395.998246  SR 119 (Cahaba Valley Road)
Hoover247.262397.930247  CR 17 (Valleydale Road)
Jefferson250.083402.470250  I-459 – Atlanta, Gadsden, TuscaloosaI-459 exit 15
251.967405.502252   US 31 (Montgomery Highway) / SR 3
253.697408.286254Alford Avenue
Homewood255.087410.523255Lakeshore Parkway
256.117412.180256Oxmoor Road – HomewoodSigned as exits 256A (west) and 256B (east) southbound
Birmingham257.557414.498258Green Springs Avenue
258.827–
258.957
416.542–
416.751
259AUniversity Boulevard (northbound)
6th Avenue South (southbound)
Signed as exit 259 northbound
259.127417.024259B4th Avenue South & 3rd Avenue SouthSouthbound exit (4th Avenue) and northbound entrance (3rd Avenue)
259.697–
259.937
417.942–
418.328
260  US 11 (US 78/SR 4 east/SR 7, 3rd Avenue North) / 6th Avenue North – Downtown BirminghamSigned as exit 260B northbound
260.562419.334261   I-20 / I-59 – Gadsden, Atlanta, TuscaloosaSigned as exits 261B (east/north) and 261C (west/south); I-20/59 exits 124B-C; hybrid interchange
261.369420.633262A16th StreetNorthbound exit and southbound entrance
261.952421.571262BFinley Boulevard (SR 378)
262.611–
262.685
422.631–
422.751
26332nd Avenue (northbound)
33rd Avenue (southbound)
263.462424.001264Daniel Payne Drive/Lewisburg RoadRamp to I-65 north also connects to I-22 west
Fultondale264.010424.883265A  I-22 – MemphisEastern terminus of I-22; I-22 exit 95
264.997426.471265B  US 31 (SR 3) – Fultondale
266.61429.07267Walker Chapel Road
Gardendale269.76434.14271Fieldstown Road
271.29436.60272Mt. Olive Road
274.72442.12275  To US 31 (SR 3, Barber Road) – Morris
Warrior279.46449.75280  To US 31 (SR 3, Service Road) – Warrior
280.48451.39281Old US 31 – Warrior
281.24452.61282Cane Creek Road – Robbins, Warrior
BlountSmoke Rise284.361457.635284   US 31 south (SR 3 south) / SR 160 east – Hayden, CornerSouthern end of US 31/SR 3 overlap
287.370462.477287  US 31 north (SR 3 north, Bee Line Highway) – Garden City, Blount SpringsNorthern end of US 31/SR 3 overlap
289.33465.63289Empire, Blount Springs
Cullman291.861469.705291  SR 91 – Hanceville, Colony
299.446481.912299  SR 69 south – Jasper, Dodge CitySouthern end of SR 69 overlap
303.490488.420304  SR 69 north – Cullman, Good HopeNorthern end of SR 69 overlap
Good Hope307.55494.95305  CR 222 (Good Hope Road)
Cullman307.464494.815308  US 278 (SR 74) – Cullman, Double Springs
310.039498.959310  SR 157 (Section Line Road) – Cullman, Moulton
Morgan318.161512.030318  US 31 (SR 3, 2nd Avenue) – Lacon, Vinemont
321.855517.975322Pike Road – Falkville, Eva
Hartselle324.938522.937325Thompson Road
327.474527.018328  SR 36 (Main Street) – Hartselle
DecaturPriceville
city line
333.337536.454334  SR 67 – Decatur, Priceville, Somerville
Wheeler Lake
Tennessee River
336.619541.736Bridge over Wheeler Lake and Tennessee River
LimestoneHuntsville340.002547.180340   I-565 east / SR 20 west (US 72 Alt.) – Huntsville, DecaturSigned as exits 340A (west) and 340B (east) southbound; I-565 exit 1 westbound & 1A-B eastbound; eastern terminus of SR 20; western terminus of I-565
Tanner347.412559.105347Huntsville–Browns Ferry Road
Athens351.024564.918351  US 72 (SR 2) – Athens, Huntsville
354.157569.960354  US 31 south – AthensSouthern end of US 31 overlap; unsigned northern terminus of SR 3
Elkmont360.918580.841361Thach Road
364.826587.131365  SR 53 south (Upper Elkton Road, 7th Street) – ArdmoreNorthern terminus of SR 53
366.229589.388   I-65 / US 31 north – NashvilleContinuation into Tennessee
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

Lane configurationsEdit

Total Mileage in Alabama-366.00 miles

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "FHWA Route Log and Finder List: Table 1". Federal Highway Administration. Retrieved 4 October 2014.
  2. ^ "Heroes Highway of Alabama". Montgomerygop.net. Retrieved 2009-08-05.
  3. ^ Simon, Scott (July 23, 2005). "Alabama Billboard's Message Changes". All Things Considered. NPR. Archived from the original on 2007-07-14. Retrieved July 26, 2013.
  4. ^ Hughes, Bayne (April 6, 2014). "Iconic rocket due for repair". Decatur Daily. Retrieved April 8, 2014.
  5. ^ "Milepost/General Highway Maps". Alabama Department of Transportation. Archived from the original on April 2, 2015. Retrieved April 14, 2016.

External linksEdit

Route map:

KML is from Wikidata


  Interstate 65
Previous state:
Terminus
Alabama Next state:
Tennessee