U.S. Interstates

I-4: The Sunshine Interstate. Interstate 4 makes its way across Central Florida to connect Tampa to Daytona Beach. What it lacks in length it more than makes up for in fun and sun.

I-5: The Pacific Interstate. I-5 travels next to or close to the Pacific Ocean for its whole route. There are many things to see and visit including beaches, studios and more.

I-10: The Fun Interstate. I-10 earns its nickname on our site as it travels through cities such as Pensacola, New Orleans and Phoenix, and ends at the Santa Monica Pier in Los Angeles.

I-15: The West Rockies Pass. Beautiful Utah landscapes and scenic ranges of the Western Rocky Mountains can be seen on this border-to-border interstate.

I-20: The Deep South Interstate. From southern Appalachia to the Mississippi Delta and beyond, travelers on this roadway will experience a variety of food, music and cultures.

I-30: The Southern Connection. This short and sweet interstate only travels through two states, but connects two of the largest east - west highways together.

I-35: The Plains Interstate. From Texas to Kansas to Iowa, see the beauty of the Great Plains while traveling this north-south roadway.

I-39: Flat-Marsh Connection. Interstate 39 was originally added to the interstate system to relieve heavy traffic congestion on the portion of U.S. 51 from Central Illinois to Rockford. Today it extends all the way to North-Central Wisconsin.

I-40: Upper-South Interstate. I-40 is one of the longest highways in the highway system, and is a key transit and shipping corridor for the nation.

I-43: Badger Pass. I-43 never leaves the state of Wisconsin, but certainly hits many of the greatest highlights of the state by traveling near or through Madison, Milwaukee and Green Bay.

I-44: The Central Juncture. A tremendous amount of traffic passes over this Midwest interstate every day due to its location in the middle of the United States.

I-55: The Midwest Interstate. There are many sights to see on I-55, and the food choices simply cannot be beat.

I-65: Western Appalachia Road. Explore the natural beauty of the Western Appalachian Mountains, and visit a variety of exciting cities along the wa on Interstate 65.

I-75: The East-Central Trail. I-75 makes it way from the beaches of South Florida through the Appalachian Mountains to the islands of Northern Michigan. It offers plenty of history and fun!

I-90: The Northern Pass. I-90 holds the title for the longest interstate in the United States, and is also the northernmost of the highway system.

I-94: The Famed Interstate. I-94 is deceptively large and travels through a significant number of northern states, including Wisconsin, Illinois, Minnesota and more. It has appeared in a number of well known movies such as The Santa Clause and Blues Brothers.

I-95: The Colonial Interstate. I-95 spans nearly the entire east coast of the United States, passing through the original 13 colonies.

About the U.S. Interstate System

Interstates are long stretches of highway that typically travel through more than one state, and have a total of four or more lanes. Two of the lanes allow cars to go in one direction and the other two in the other direction. In metropolitan areas, these large highways can grow to sizes of six, eight or even ten lanes (three, four or five lanes per direction).

The Interstate System was conceived in 1956, when President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed the Federal Aid Highway Act, also known as the National Interstate and Defense Highways Act. This act appropriated $25 Billion towards the construction of approximately 41,000 miles of interstate around the country. One of the main objectives of the system, was that the United States needed to be able to rapidly respond to foreign threats if needed. The existing highways at the time simply did not allow for rapid movement of equipment, troops or supplies from coast to coast.

A naming and numbering system was created for these new highways as well. Each name would consist of the letter I followed by a dash and then a two-digit number. Large interstates traveling east to west would be given a two-digit number ending in zero, while those traveling north to south would be given a two-digit number ending in five. Some examples of the east to west names are I-10, I-20, I-40 and I-90. Examples of north to south names are I-5, I-15 and I-95.

Smaller interstates were built as well. Many of these were given two-digit numbers that ended in a seven or nine. In large, metropolitan areas, bypasses were required to circle or bend around the heavy traffic of the metropolitan areas' interiors. These bypasses were given three-digit numbers that typically ended with a five. One famous bypass is I-495 that circles around Washington, D.C., and is nicknamed "The Beltway".

Though many of the larger interstates have been completed, change is constant and new developments are always underway. A new project was just recently approved that will allow I-49 to be completed from Fort Smith to Kansas City. Another project currently in progress is called the I-4 Ultimate Highway, which will improve the road around Orlando and be completed by 2021.