Thursday, February 22, 2007

Wilmington NC

I 40 East, Holly Shelter Rd, US 177 South, US 17 Business North, US 74 West, US 421 North, I 140 East, US 17 North, US 17 Business South, Military Cutoff, US 76 West, US 117 South, US 421 North, US 76 West, NC 87 North, I 95 Business North, I 95 South, I 95 Business North, NC 87 North, US 15/501 North
There has been a discussion in the US highway mapping forum over what route US 17 Business takes through Wilmington after US 17 was routed over I 140. To answer this question and reclinch the US highways in Wilmington that were rerouted, I took a roadtrip to Wilmington and crisscrossed the city to check everything out.
In NC, when a town is bypassed by a US highway, the original routing is converted to a Business Route. As time goes on, some towns grow up around the bypass and a new bypass for the same highway is built. Then, usually, the old Business Route is decommissioned and the main route is converted to a new Business Route. However, this is not what happened in Wilmington. The original US 17 Business is still part of the new Business Route. The previous main routing of US 17 along Dawson from 3rd to 17th and along 17th was decommissioned. The rest of the main routing across the bridge and on Market from 17th to I 140 was added to the Business Route.
US 17 Truck Route appears to be decommissioned. I could find no signs for the route.
There is a BEGIN banner on an I 140 shield on the entrance ramp from US 421. There is an END banner on an I 140 shield just east of the I 40 bridge.
I took a side trip from NC 87 over to the Elwell Ferry, but the fog on the river was too heavy and the ferry was not running. I love these old two car ferries.
NC 87 is being divided from Elizabethtown to I 95.
The NC 87 freeway in Fayetteville has numbered exits, starting with exit 100 for the airport exit to 104B for Hay Street. The NC 87/24 exit is not numbered.
Clinch I 40, I 95 Business. Mileage on US 17, US 74, US 117, US 311, US 421, NC 87.
Count Bladen, Columbus counties.

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