Highway to Nowhere

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Comments (10)

Avagara on July 1, 2010

This photo shows nearly the entire 1.39 mile stretch of what was intended to be the eastern end of Interstate 70. But fierce opposition from neighborhoods to the west doomed the project in the 1970s, and I-70 now ends at the Baltimore Beltway. This section was completed, however, and in the process eliminated a significant portion of the predominantly black neighborhood of Harlem Park. Looking west from the Schroeder Street bridge, this shows the bridges at Arlington Avenue, Carrollton Avenue (pedestrian), Carey Street, Calhoun Street, Stricker Street (pedestrian), Gilmor Street, Mount Street, and Fulton Street at the top of the hill. There is one additional bridge at Monroe Street. This highway is a monument of sorts to the failed urban planning ideas of the mid-twentieth century.

© Tom Cooper on July 10, 2010

There was a similar fight over the I-95 corridor through Boston. The governor at the time thought he could gain some votes by killing the controversial project. Today, I-95 goes around Boston on the beltway locally known as 128. Governor Francis Sargent lost the election anyway.

But about 10 years later, when improving and expanding commuter rail facilities was necessary, there was an obvious route...the same one the highway would have taken. The land was still held by the state, and most of the buildings removed. By then, the fight had gone out of the community, and the land that had been aquired for a strip of macadam was instead paved with steel rail five tracks wide. One thing is better, however. The trains, unlike the highway, are depressed, blocking much of the noise and allowing an unobstructed view. Significant parts of the commuter rail system in that area are completely underground, allowing unobstructed use of the land above for roads and parks.

Rosencruz Sumera on September 11, 2010

Somehow this shot appeals to me, it caught my eyes right away. good composition.

Cham Green on March 14, 2011

If it didn't go anywhere before it certainly goes nowhere now.

Avagara on March 15, 2011

Yes, I'm glad I got the photo before they closed it. Now it's officially a historical shot.

Cham Green on March 30, 2011

We now have a matched set. Sort of before and after. I took the west view off Carey Street.

Avagara on March 30, 2011

Thanks, Cham!

easterturd on April 5, 2011

First, I apologize for the username. I thought that would not be public. I remember this in the 1950s. Actually, this was a very busy corridor between what was once a vibrant downtown and the immediate suburbs. It was then Mulberry street in one direction and Franklin Street in the other. Before I 95 and before the major department stores left the city running and screaming, this was THE way to go "downtown" from the West. The highway authorities thought that they would eventually get the right-of-way to carry this highway all the way through town and beyond. They also wanted to connect it to I70 from the west They never did

Cham Green on April 5, 2011

Well, easterturd, good news for you. We are back to Mulberry Street in one direction and Franklin Street in the other. I find it THE way to visit my friends on the West Side. Turns out the lack of the 10 block expressway hasn't slowed me down in the least and I like the scenic route so much better. Now if we can just get them to fill in the big trough.

Avagara on July 15, 2011

Now that deconstruction of the wall at the west end of the highway is complete, the highway to nowhere is back in operation (July, 2011).

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Photo details

  • Uploaded on July 1, 2010
  • © All Rights Reserved
    by Avagara
    • Exposure: 0.003s (1/400)
    • Focal Length: 34.00mm
    • F/Stop: f/4.141
    • ISO Speed: ISO200
    • Exposure Bias: 1.00 EV
    • No flash