North Carolina Roads - I-85/US 29/52/70

, I-85/US 52, I-85/US 29/US 70

Above: courtesy Lou Corsaro.

At the tops of the SB and NB Exit 33 ramps to Billy Graham Pkwy., the beginning of Charlotte Route 4, which is an intermediate loop of surface roads. Route 4 ultimately comes back to I-85 and ends at Exit 41 along Sugar Creek Rd.

Courtesy Lou Corsaro, this NB sign is blank because City Blvd. is incomplete in both directions - it has a short stub to the west.

Old, crowded, all-text signage on I-85 SB, also from Lou.

SB through widening and over the old Yadkin River bridge, courtesy Lou Corsaro. The NB carriageway has already been shifted over to the new bridge, so lies empty in these bridge views. Now, both new, wider bridges have been constructed (one NB, one SB), and this original alignment to the west has been taken down. A shame, because it's one of the last old-school freeways in the state. US 29/70 leave just before the river on their own old bridge.

Lou turned around northbound (I-85/US 52) and brought photos of the new bridge construction in this direction. It looks like the intent is to get both directions of traffic shifted onto the future NB bridge while SB bridge construction continues, allowing demolition of the now-former original span.

These routes are only all together for four miles, but Lou found an odd sign photo in that stretch. It's almost like separate shields, but not.

My NB photos pick up where Lou left off, from Exit 83 (NC 150) to Exit 87 (I-85 Business, obviously the former mainline, and taking US 29/70 with it). I was there just three months after Lou (October 2012 instead of July), so it's not surprising that nothing has really changed.

Enough routes for you? Let's just assume the answer is "yes." The KISS rule would suggest keeping US 421 and I-40 on separate signs just for sanity's sake. That would also avoid the suggestion that Exits 120A-B lead To West US 70, when the through route is actually East. The final note here is that Business I-85 just merged in at Exit 118 from a long sweep through Lexington and High Point, so there's a de factoI-85 and Business 85 concurrency, which has to be a unique case.
Oh, what was on the Exit 120A sign, you ask? Needless to say, it's tough to figure anything out around here, but it could make sense as a TO I-40 East.

Lovett St. SB in Greensboro, just past Florida St., courtesy Lou Corsaro. The city should've left this one for NCDOT.

Since the southwestern corner of the Urban Loop around Greensboro opened, this became the Business route for both of these Interstates. This is an old photo from Lou predating the switch. However, I-40 was then put back on its old route to avoid losing Interstate funding, so then I-40 unswitched and this sign became correct again.

Here's a new one along the southeast side of the Urban Loop, once more from Lou. The directional plates should be written directly on the sign instead, or else the shields should just be mounted on the poles and forget the expense of a reflective background.

I-40 EB/I-85 NB by Burlington.

Courtesy Adam Prince, these are on Churton St. SB in Hillsborough at I-85 Exit 164. Amuse your friends with the following fun fact: I-85 NB here in fact heads somewhat south, since it is more of an east-west route anyway. In fact, Durham is south of Greensboro, so if I-85 connects the two heading in the northbound direction, it has to violate its directionality somewhere.

Sunset along Falls Lake, north of Durham.

US 158 (well, as By-Pass) comes around Henderson on I-85 and leaves here with a very substandard but at least button-copy assembly.

Exit to the right, exit tab to the right. SB.

Exit 76 to US 52 alone
Exit 87 or 120A to Business I-85 (and US 29/70)
Exit 87 or 120A to US 29 alone and US 70 alone
Exit 120 to I-40 (and Business I-85/US 29/70)

Into South Carolina on I-85
Into Virginia on I-85
Onto Charlotte Route 4
Exit 45 to NC 24
Exit 120 to US 421
Exit 120B to I-73
(Exit 213) to US 158
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