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US 421.svgI-785 (Future).svgI-840 (Future).svg

Painter Boulevard
Greensboro Urban Loop
Maintained by NCDOT
Length: 14.4 mi (23 km)
Formed: 2004; To be completed: 2014
West end: Bryan Boulevard in Greensboro
I-40 / US 421 in Greensboro
I-85 / I-85 Bus. / US 29 in Greensboro
I-73 (Future) / US 220 in Greensboro
I-40 / I-85 / I-85 Bus. in Greensboro
East end: US 70 in Greensboro
North Carolina highways

The Greensboro Urban Loop (also known as Painter Boulevard) is a planned 41-mile (66 km) beltway around Greensboro, North Carolina, United States. The loop carries Interstate 85 and U.S. Route 421 on its southern section, and Interstate 73 from U.S. 220 to Bryan Boulevard along the west side of Greensboro. In the future, it will carry Interstate 785 from I-40/I-85 east of downtown to U.S. 29.

The parts of Urban Loop that are currently open are:

  • the southern half (signed as Interstate 73 on the southwest section, and Interstate 85 on the southeast section);
  • a portion of Future I-840 that runs 2 miles (3 km) from I-40/I-85 east of downtown to U.S. 70;
  • a 3-mile (4.8 km) section of I-840 (co-signed with I-73) on the west, between I-40 and Bryan Boulevard, which will provide better access to the Piedmont Triad International Airport. This section is signed with a FUTURE plate above the shield, as it does not yet connect to any major roads.

Construction is completed on the southwest part of the beltway, which opened February 21, 2008. The next section to be constructed is between U.S. 70 and U.S. 29, to begin in 2013. Work on the remaining section, between Bryan Boulevard and U.S. 29, is currently not scheduled to begin until at least 2014.

This is one of five freeway corridors in the Greensboro area to include the word "Boulevard" in its name. What is now Business I-85 is also known as Preddy Boulevard, what was once Business I-40 west of downtown (and is again I-40) is also known as Fordham Boulevard, and part of I-73 is planned to follow Bryan Boulevard. O. Henry Boulevard carries U.S. 29 east of downtown Greensboro.

In April 2005, the city of Greensboro voted to approve annexation of the Urban Loop into the city of Greensboro. The annexation took effect in June of that year.[1][2]

A small portion of Interstate 73 is completed and signed along the Urban Loop, and there is a wrong-way concurrency with Interstate 85 for approximately one mile. It should be noted however: as a result of the freeway's unusual design, I-85 and I-73 do not share the same roadbed. A traveler following I-73 through the intersection will not at any point be on mainline I-85, despite signage that indicates otherwise to minimize confusion.


I-40 Relocation

The Urban Loop and its designations since January 2004 up to October 2008.

On September 12, 2008, after complaints by local residents and motorist on the confusion between Interstate 40, and Business Interstate 40 through Greensboro, NCDOT officials received permission from the FHWA to reroute Interstate 40 back through the city of Greensboro and decommission Business Interstate 40. This placed Interstate 40 on its original route while leaving I-73 and I-85 signed along the Greensboro Urban Loop. By the end of Fall 2008 Business Interstate 40 signs through Greensboro will be replaced back with Interstate 40 signs, and US 421 will be rerouted to replace most of the I-40 route along the Loop.[1]

As of April 2009, few changes to note the re-designation have been made. At the I-40/85 interchange east of Greensboro, I-40 is signed as going through Greensboro, while all other signs along the Urban Loop show I-40 on the loop, including at the southern I-85/73 interchange and the western I-40/73/840 interchange. Overhead signs through Greensboro were never changed to reflect Business 40 and still show I-40, while Business 40 shields are still placed along Business 85. Between Business 85 and I-73, reassurance markers were never changed to Business 40 shields, but directional signs at interchanges were, and still reflect Business 40. Mile markers and exit numbers (with the exception of overhead signs) were briefly changed between Business 85 and I-73, but have been reverted, while mile markers and exit numbers along the Urban Loop have not changed since its original opening. As of August 2009, crucial signage has US 421 signed along the Loop, though many signs still show US 421 going through Greensboro.[2][3]

Exit list

This exit list covers the entire Greensboro Urban Loop that is constructed so far.[4][5][6]

Mile # Destinations Notes
19 US 70 Counterclockwise exit and clockwise entrance
21 I-40 east / I-85 north – Durham, Raleigh No exit number counterclockwise
21 I-40 west / I-85 Bus. south – Greensboro
129 Youngs Mill Road
128 Alamance Church Road
126 US 421 south – Sanford Signed as exits 126A (south) and 126B (Greensboro)
124 South Elm-Eugene Street
122C US 220 north – Greensboro Clockwise exit is exit 122C; no exit from I-73 south to US 220 north
220 95A
I-73 (Future).svgUS 220.svg US 220 south / Future I-73 south - Asheboro Counterclockwise exit is exit 95A
Clockwise exit is exit 122B
219 97A I-85 Bus. north / US 29 north / US 70 east to US 220 north – Greensboro No exit from I-85 south/I-73 north
218 97
Groometown Road to Grandover Parkway Counterclockwise exit is exit 97
Clockwise exit is exit 122A
218 97B
I-85 south / US 29 south / US 70 west – High Point, Charlotte No exit number clockwise
I-73/US 421 North is exit 121 from I-85 south.
214 102 Wendover Avenue
212B 103A I-40 east Signed as exit 103A clockwise
1 I-40 west / US 421 north – Winston-Salem No exit number clockwise; Traffic continuing on the Urban Loop was to use exit 212A
2 West Friendly Avenue
3 Bryan Boulevard – PTI Airport Clockwise exit and counterclockwise entrance

Interstate 840

Interstate 840 (Future) shield
Interstate 840 (Future)
Main route of the Interstate Highway System
Length: 5 mi[7] (8 km)
Formed: Summer 2007 (planned)
West end: I-40 / I-73 in Greensboro, NC
Bryan Boulevard in Greensboro

US 70 in Greensboro

East end: I-40 / I-85 / I-85 Bus. in Greensboro, NC
North Carolina highways
< NC 801 NC 901 >

Interstate 840 (abbreviated I-840) is a planned 21-mile (34 km) east–west auxiliary route of the Interstate Highway System, forming the northern half of a beltway around Greensboro, North Carolina.

The only parts of I-840 that are currently open are a segment running 2 miles (3 km) from I-85 east of downtown north (signed west) to U.S. 70 and a 3-mile (5 km) stretch on the west side between I-40 and Bryan Boulevard which was opened on 18 December 2007. This section provides better access to the PTI airport.[3] Both are signed as Future Interstate 840 (the western section is also signed as Future Interstate 73) with a FUTURE plate above the shield, due to neither section connecting to any significant roadways. The next section to be constructed is US 70 north (west) to US 29, slated to start in 2013. The rest of I-840 is not set to be finished until at least 2015.

When Interstate 785 is completed it will use the portion of I-840 from US 29 south to reach I-85. It will be the second occurrence in the nation of two three-digit interstates running concurrently, the other being Interstates 271 and 480 near Cleveland, Ohio.

See also


External links



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