Interstate 287 New Jersey / New York

Routing

Interstate 287 encircles the New York City metropolitan area along three distinct roads. The North Jersey portion provides both a commuter route and bypass from the New Jersey Turnpike (I-95) at Edison west to Somerville and north to Morristown, Oakland and Mahwah. This section of I-287 ties into the New York Thruway mainline (I-87) just across the New York state line at Suffern.

Interstates 87 & 287 combine east along the New York Thruway to Nyack and the tolled Tappan Zee Bridge across the Hudson River. Major construction is underway to replace the aging Tappan Zee Bridge with a new cable-stayed bridge. Work runs through 2018, with traffic shifting onto one half of the new span by mid 2017.

Interstate 87 and the Thruway turn south at East Irvington toward Yonkers and the Bronx, New York. Interstate 287 continues east along the often congested Cross West Chester Expressway to Rye and Interstate 95 (New England Thruway) near the Connecticut state line.

High Priority Corridor

Interstate 287 in New Jersey is part of High Priority Corridor 63: Liberty Corridor.

History

The Cross Westchester Expressway opened to traffic in December 1960 at a cost of $50 million. It was initially designated as Interstate 187 in August 1958 and as Interstate 487 when it opened, but changed to I-287 in 1961.1

An eastern extension of Interstate 287 was proposed by Robert Moses to complete the beltway around New York via the Oyster Bay-Rye Bridge. A cabled-stayed suspension bridge traveling 6.1 miles across Long Island Sound was envisioned to link the east end of I-287 at Rye with an extension of New York 135, the Seaford-Oyster Bay Expressway. A study for the crossing was released by Moses in February 1966.2

Planning for the Oyster Bay-Rye Bridge was halted in 1970. New studies were required following the implementation of stricter environmental legislation by the Federal government in 1970. A draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) was submitted in November 1972 for a 16.5 mile roadway including the span and approaches between I-95 and NY 25 in Syosset. The mileage was submitted by New York State to the Interstate system under the Federal Highway Act of 1968.2

Residents in Rye, Oyster Bay and other locations along the proposed corridor organized to counter the bridge and extension of I-287. Their efforts and environmental concerns led to formal cancellation of the crossing by Governor Nelson Rockefeller on June 20, 1973.2

Highway Guides

Southern Terminus - Interstate 95 and New Jersey 440 - Perth Amboy, New Jersey
Perspective from Interstate 287 south
Interstate 287 southbound within one-half mile of concluding. The sign bridge has gone ahead and advised motorists that they are now on New Jersey 440 eastbound. The transition does not occur officially until Interstate 287 reaches the ramp for the New Jersey Turnpike/Interstate 95. There is an end Interstate 287/Begin New Jersey 440 guide sign posted within the median ahead of the upcoming interchange. Vidcap taken by Ray Martin. (7/99).
Interstate 287 officially ends as New Jersey 440 eastbound begins. Visible to the far right in this photograph is milepost 0. Note that the Interstate 95 guide sign includes a New Jersey Turnpike trailblazer along with the redundant New Jersey Turnpike in text. New Jersey 440 travels five miles to the east into Staten Island, New York via the Outer Bridge Crossing. The freeway also has important connections with the Garden State Parkway and U.S. 9 before crossing the Arthur Kill River into the Empire State. Photo taken by Chris Mason (10/13/01).
Perspective from Interstate 95/New Jersey Turnpike south
Two-mile guide signage for Exit 10 on the New Jersey Turnpike southbound. The control points are listed as Perth Amboy for New Jersey 440 east and Metuchen for Interstate 287 north. The two communities are within five miles of this interchange. Photo taken by Douglas Kerr (08/00).
Southbound Interstate 95/New Jersey Turnpike approaches Exit 10, Junction Interstate 287 and New Jersey 440 (one mile). Photo taken 06/13/05.
Southbound Interstate 95/New Jersey Turnpike reaches Exit 10, Junction Interstate 287 and New Jersey 440. Photo taken 08/29/05.
Perspective from Interstate 95/New Jersey Turnpike north
Traveling north on Interstate 95/New Jersey Turnpike, the toll road passes through a rural area as it approaches the outer beltline of the New York City metropolitan area: Interstate 287. Exit 10 serves Interstate 287 north and New Jersey 440 east to the Outerbridge and Staten Island. Photo taken 06/26/05.
Northbound Interstate 95/New Jersey Turnpike approaches Exit 10, Junction Interstate 287 north and New Jersey 440 east. Interstate 287 travels west from here until around Exit 17, then turns north and east to bypass the metropolitan area. Use Interstate 287 north to Interstate 78, New Jersey 24, Interstate 80, New Jersey 208, and Interstate 87/New York Thruway. Photo taken 06/26/05.
Continuing north, a new lane provides the connection onto northbound Interstate 287/New Jersey 440, while the left three lanes continue north on Interstate 95/New Jersey Turnpike. Photo taken 06/26/05.
Replaced button copy signage for Interstate 287/New Jersey 440/Exit 10 on the New Jersey Turnpike northbound. This guide sign, and others for Exit 10, were replaced by Spring of 2000. Vidcap taken 10/98.
Approaching the gore point for Exit 10, the connection to Interstate 287 is afforded via either the express (inner) or local (outer) lanes. Photo taken 06/26/05.
After passing through the toll plaza, motorists are afforded a choice of routes: Interstate 287 north to Middlesex County Route 514 east (left lane), New Jersey 440 north (east) to the Garden State Parkway (middle lane), and Middlesex County Route 514 west (right lane). Photo taken 06/13/05.
Continuing onto northbound Interstate 287 north, the right lane connects to New Jersey 440 east to the Garden State Parkway, Outerbridge Crossing, and Staten Island. The left lane will connect to Interstate 287 north. Photo taken 06/13/05.
Another older sign is posted at the point where New Jersey 440 east (north) departs from the transition ramp. The left lane connects onto Interstate 287 north to Middlesex County Route 514 east. Photo taken 06/13/05.
Perspective from New Jersey 440 south
New Jersey 440 will come to an end once it passes through the interchange with Interstate 95/New Jersey Turnpike and Middlesex County Route 514/Woodbridge Road. Photo taken 08/29/05.
The right two lanes exit to Middlesex County Route 514/Woodbridge Road and Interstate 95/New Jersey Turnpike. The left three lanes continue west, transitioning directly onto northbound Interstate 287. Photo taken 08/29/05.
Now on the transition lanes to Middlesex County Route 514 and Interstate 95/New Jersey Turnpike, the first ramp connects to Middlesex County Route 514 east to Woodbridge. Photo taken 08/29/05.
New Jersey 440 westbound as it transitions into Interstate 287. This end/begin style signage is common within the Garden State. The six lane freeway proceeds in a westerly fashion through communities such as Edison, Piscataway, and Bridgewater before turning northwards to Interstate 78 and beyond. Photo taken by Carter Buchanan (06/30/05).
Perspective from Interstate 287 north
The first pull-through sign for Interstate 287 north appears as the freeway enters a full cloverleaf interchange (Exits 1A/B) with U.S. 1 at Edison and Metuchen. Photo taken by Carter Buchanan (06/30/05).
Eastern (Northern) Terminus - Interstate 95 - Rye, New York
Perspective from Interstate 287 east
Shortly after the New York 120 and New York 120A interchange (Exit 10), eastbound Interstate 287 approaches its final two interchanges: Exit 11, Junction U.S. 1, and Exit 12, Junction Interstate 95. Photo taken 08/29/05.
Still ahead of Exit 11 for U.S. 1 to Rye, signs direct motorists for Interstate 95. The mainline defaults onto the freeway north into Byram, Connecticut. Photo taken 08/09/04.
An end shield for I-287 precedes the off-ramp (Exit 1) for U.S. 1. U.S. 1 parallels Interstate 95 from New York northward into Connecticut. Note the usage of Conn Tpke as a control point for I-95 north even though tolls were dropped in 1986. Photo taken 08/09/04.
A split interchange connects the east end of I-287 with Interstate 95 (New England Thruway) south to New Rochelle and Bronx, New York and Interstate 95 (Governor Lodge Turnpike) north to Greenwich, Stamford and New Haven. Photo taken 08/09/04.
Perspective from Interstate 95 south
One mile ahead of Exit 21 with Interstate 287 (Cross Westchester Expressway) west on I-95 (Connecticut Turnpike) south. The freeway transitions onto the New England Thruway south at the forthcoming state line. Photo taken 06/13/05.
The wye (Exit 21) with Interstate 287 west from I-95 south ties into the adjacent folded diamond interchange with Midland Avenue for Port Chester and Rye. I-287 otherwise comprises a busy commuter route west to White Plains and the Tappan Zee Bridge. Photo taken 06/13/05.
Exit 21 leaves Interstate 95 (New England Thruway) south for I-287 west to Suffern and south to Morristown, New Jersey. I-95 progress southwest 11 miles through the suburbs of Mamaroneck, Larchmont, and New Rochelle to enter Bronx, New York. Photo taken by Douglas Kerr (01/01).
Perspective from Interstate 95 north
Back to back ramps join Interstate 95 (New England Thruway) north with U.S. 1 south and Interstate 287 west at Rye. Photo taken 08/29/05.
Interstate 287 travels west across the northern suburbs of New York City before merging with Interstate 87 and the New York Thruway mainline. West from there, I-87 & 287 cross the Hudson River via the Tappan Zee Bridge, and split at Suffern at the east end of New York 17. Photo taken 08/29/05.
Interstate 95 north reaches Exit 20 for U.S. 1 (Boston Post Road) south to Rye. Exit 21 follows for both I-287 west and U.S. 1 north to Port Chester. Photo taken 08/29/05.
U.S. 1 (Boston Post Road) spans Interstate 95 as Exit 21 parts ways for Interstate 287 (Cross Westchester Expressway) west. Photo taken 08/29/05.
Traffic taking Exit 21 from I-95 north combines with an on-ramp from U.S. 1 north. The two lane ramp advances to split with ramps for I-287 west and U.S. 1 north. Photo taken 08/29/05.
Motorists separate into ramps for I-287 west and U.S. 1 north at a trumpet interchange with the Cross Westchester Expressway located just west of its split with I-95 south. Interstate 287 reaches White Plains in four miles and the Tappan Zee Bridge in 11 miles. Photo taken 08/29/05.
Historical Perspective from Interstate 287 west
A half mile west from Interstate 95, drivers once passed below this set of button copy signs. A loop ramp joins the eastbound on-ramp to I-95 south for motorists joining I-287 west from Midland Avenue. Photo taken by Michael Summa (1976).

Sources:

Page Updated July 22, 2016.

Mileage

State New Jersey
Mileage 67.54
Cities Somerville, Morristown, Pompton Plain, Oakland
Junctions Interstate 95/New Jersey Turnpike, Interstate 78, Interstate 80
State New York
Mileage 31.18*
Cities Suffern, Spring Valley, White Plains, Tarrytown, Port Chester
Junctions Interstate 87/New York Thruway, Interstate 684, Interstate 95
TOTAL 98.72
Source: December 31, 2015 Interstate Route Log and Finders List
19.20 miles on I-87
Interstate 287 Annual Average Daily Traffic

State Location AADT Composite Year
New York Suffern 71,400 2002
New York Tappan Zee Bridge 137,800 2002
New York White Plains 140,300 2002
New York Purchase 125,300 2002
Source: NYSDOT 2002 Traffic Volume Report
Complete Interstate 287 AADT data.
The Cross Westchester Expressway as I-487 - 1960 Rand McNally North American Road Atlas.
Interstate 87 was proposed separate from the New York Thruway, from the Cross Westchester Expressway north to Brewster, until 1969. An earlier alignment showed the route staying closer to the Hudson River north from Tarrytown.