Interstate 195 Virginia

Routing

Interstate 195 is an urban freeway spur branching southwest from I-64/95 (Richmond-Petersburg Turnpike) to Carytown in the city of Richmond. The Beltline Expressway accompanies a CSX Railroad corridor between the Malvern Gardens community and the Museum District. The south end splits into branches for the tolled Powhite Parkway (SR 76) west to Midlothian and the tolled Downtown Expressway (SR 195) back to Interstate 95.

History

Plans for the Richmond Expressway System were announced in October 1966. As originally envisioned, the $90 to 95 million system would consist of four segments:1

  • Beltline Expressway - a four to six lane route running northeast from near Willow Oaks on the south banks of the James River to Bryan Park on the North Side of the city.
  • Downtown Expressway - a six lane roadway angling southeast from the Beltline Expressway along Idlewood Avenue to the Richmond-Petersburg Turnpike near Main Street Station.
  • Powhite Parkway - an expressway linking Chippenham Parkway in Chesterfield County to the Beltline Expressway at Willow Oaks. This route would follow the Powhite creekbed and Southern Railway line.
  • Riverside Parkway - paralleling the south bank of the James River, between the Powhite Parkway and Huguenot Bridge. Provisions were considered for an extension of this leg west into Henrico County, including a bridge across the James to the west of the Huguenot Bridge.

Tolls collected on the expressway system were proposed mostly at 15 cents, with selected locations levying either 10 or 25 cents. Speed limits were to be set at 50 miles per hour.1

The Beltline Expressway opened in 1975.2 The route of I-195 was approved by AASHTO on June 9, 1986.

Highway Guides

Southern Terminus - Virginia 76, 146, 195 - Richmond, Virginia
Perspective from Virginia 76 north
Crossing the James River, Powhite Parkway (SR 76) approaches the split with SR 146 to SR 195 (Downtown Expressway) east. I-195 commences north at the merge with SR 195 west, but signs here display the Interstate. Photo taken 12/16/16.
Traffic partitions for SR 146 east to toll SR 195 through Downtown Richmond and SR 76 north to I-195 north. Regional traffic headed to Norfolk via I-64 east or Petersburg via I-95 south is directed onto the Downtown Expressway. Photo taken 12/16/16.
SR 76 transitions onto Interstate 195 (Beltline Expressway) northbound at a wye interchange by Carytown. Photo taken 12/16/16.
Perspective from Interstate 195 south
Interstate 195 (Beltline Expressway) drops below grade from Scott's Addition and U.S. 33/250 (Broad Street) as a CSX Railroad separates the north and southbound roadways. The route concludes in 1.75 miles. Photo taken 12/31/16.
SR 76 (Powhite Parkway) stems southwest from the Beltline Expressway to the Chesterfield County suburbs. The toll road connects with SR 150 (Chippenhem Parkway) at Bon Air and U.S. 60 east of Midlothian. Photo taken 12/31/16.
Interstate 195 extends southeast from SR 76 (Powhite Parkway) between the Carytown and Stadium neighborhoods to the tolled Downtown Expressway (SR 195). Photo taken 12/31/16.
Interstate 195 transitions to State Route 195 at the McCloy Street overpass and loop ramp for Rosewood Avenue and City Stadium. Mile markers for I-195/SR 195 decrease along the Downtown Expressway east to I-95. Photo taken 07/09/10.
Northern Terminus - Interstates 64 and 95 - Richmond, Virginia
Perspective from Interstate 195 north
Interstate 195 (Beltline Expressway) meets U.S. 33/250 (Broad Street) 1.25 miles from the three-wye interchange with I-64 and I-95. Photo taken 12/16/16.
The Beltline Expressway navigates through a series of S-curves above industrial and a CSX Railroad yard along the Henrico County line. Two lanes separate for I-64 west in 0.4 miles. Photo taken 12/16/16.
A half diamond interchange joins Interstate 195 with SR 197 (Laburnum Avenue) east ahead of the ramp split for I-64 west to Charlottesville and I-64/95 east. Photo taken 12/16/16.
Passing over Laburnum Avenue, Interstate 195 separates with the ramps for I-95 north to Washington, DC and I-64/95 east toward Hampton Roads. Photo taken 12/16/16.
An end shield for Interstate 195 stands at the gore point for I-64 west and I-95/64 east. Photo taken 12/16/16.
Perspective from Interstate 64 east
Interstate 64 crosses paths with U.S. 33 (Staples Mill Road) at Dumbarton, 1.75 miles northwest of the exchange (Exit 186) with I-195, SR 197 (Laburnum Avenue) and I-95. Photo taken by Carter Buchanan (08/08/04).
Winding southeast between a CSX Railroad yard and Joseph Bryan Park, Interstate 64 advances to within a half mile of I-195 (Beltline Expressway) and I-95. Photo taken by Carter Buchanan (08/08/04).
Interstate 64 enters the city of Richmond at the overlapping directional T interchanges with I-195 south and the Richmond-Petersburg Turnpike (I-95). Photo taken by Carter Buchanan (08/08/04).
Exit 186 departs from I-64 east to both Interstate 195 south and adjacent Virginia 197 (Laburnum Avenue) east to the Ginter Park neighborhood in Richmond. Photo taken by Carter Buchanan (08/08/04).
Perspective from Interstate 95 south
Interstate 95 enters the city of Richmond by Joseph Bryan Park on the one mile approach to Exit 79 for I-195 (Beltline Expressway) south and I-64 west. Photo taken 01/04/19.
The Beltline Expressway links I-64 and I-95 with Powhite Parkway (SR 76) south to Midlothian and the Downtown Expressway (SR 195) east to the Richmond central business district. Photo taken 01/04/19.
Bellevue Avenue spans Interstate 95 south at the two-lane off-ramp (Exit 79) for I-64 west and I-195 south. I-64 east combines with I-95 south for 3.1 miles along the northernmost stretch of the Richmond-Petersburg Turnpike. Photo taken 12/31/16.
Entering the three-wye interchange with I-64 and I-195, Exit 79 splits into ramps for both Charlottesville and the Beltline Expressway to Downtown Richmond via SR 195 and Chesterfield County via SR 76 (Powhite Parkway). Photo taken 12/31/16.
Perspective from Interstates 64 west & 95 north
Interstate 64 splits from I-95 (Richmond-Petersburg Turnpike) northbound in 0.75 miles at Exit 79. I-195 ties into the upcoming exchange from the southwest. Photo taken 06/01/03.
Turning north along the Rosedale community, a half mile from the departure of I-64 west. The city of Charlottesville lies 64 miles beyond Exit 79. Photo taken 06/01/03.
Three lanes continue north along I-95 toward Ashland, Fredericksburg and Northern Virginia. I-64 west links with Interstate 195 (Beltline Expressway) at the ensuing ramp beyond Exit 79. Photo taken 06/01/03.
Left Exit 186 drops from Interstate 64 west to the Beltline Expressway south back into Richmond to Powhite Parkway (SR 76) south and SR 195 east. Photo taken 06/01/03.

Sources:

  1. "Expressway Plans Unveiled 20 Years Ago." Richmond Times-Dispatch (VA), October 30, 1986.
  2. I-195 Beltline Expressway. RoadstotheFuture (Scott Kozel).

Page updated February 22, 2019.