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Interstate 295 Florida

 

Routing

Interstate 295 (secret Florida 9A) is Jacksonville's western bypass between Interstate 95 south of downtown and Interstate 95 north of downtown. Interstate 95 is also Florida 9.

This map of the Jacksonville metropolitan area shows the existing Interstate 295, Florida 9A/future Interstate 295, and future Interstate 795 routing.

The Buckman Bridge carries Interstate 295 over the St. Johns River southwest of downtown Jacksonville. At this point, the inner loop of Interstate 295/Jacksonville Beltway (signed as northbound) is traveling due west. Photo taken by Steve Hanudel (08/14/05).

The Broward Bridge carries Florida 9A (Future Interstate 295) over the St. Johns River northeast of downtown Jacksonville. At this point, the inner loop of Future Interstate 295/Jacksonville Beltway is traveling south. Photo taken by Steve Hanudel (08/14/05).

History

The following are key dates in the history of Interstate 295 in Florida:3

  • 1962 - An early possible segment of Interstate 295 was shown as signed along the then-new 20th Street Expressway from U.S. 1 to Interstate 95; this section is no longer part of Interstate 295 and is now signed as U.S. 1, Alternate U.S. 1, or Florida 115.
  • 1968 - The modern section of Interstate 295 first came under construction from Interstate 95 northwest to Orange Park.
  • 1970 - Interstate 295 opened from Interstate 95 northwest to 103rd Street (first segment to open). Freeway was under construction from 103rd Street north to Interstate 10.
  • 1973 - Interstate 295 opened from 103rd Street north to Interstate 10.
  • 1975 - Interstate 295 opened from Interstate 10 north to Commonwealth Avenue.
  • 1977 - Interstate 295 opened from Commonwealth Avenue north to Interstate 95 northwest of Jacksonville. Western half of future Jacksonville Beltway was now complete.
  • 1983 - Future Interstate 295 opened from Interstate 95 east to U.S. 17 north of Jacksonville, which is the first section of the eastern half of future Jacksonville Beltway to open.
  • 1986 - Future Interstate 295 (eastern half) under construction as a Super Two, signed as Florida 9A. The section from U.S. 17 southeast to Florida 105 (Heckscher Drive) opened as a two-lane freeway.
  • 1990 - Future Interstate 295 opened on a new bridge across the St. John's River from Florida 105 (Heckscher Drive) south to Monument Road. The bridge was signed as Interstate 295 between 1990 and 1993.
  • 1993 - Previously signed sections of Interstate 295 on the eastern half of the Jacksonville Beltway are redesignated as Florida 9A.
  • 1999 - New section of Florida 9A (Future Interstate 295) was under construction from Florida 202 (J. Turner Butler Boulevard) south to U.S. 1. The connection between the existing segment (from Monument Road northward) and the new segment (from Florida 202 southward) is made via St. John's Bluff Road (signed as Florida 9A).
  • 2002 - Section of Florida 9A (Future Interstate 295) opened to traffic. Section from U.S. 1 southwest to Interstate 95 was under construction.
  • 2005 - Florida 9A southerly connection between U.S. 1 and Interstate 95 opened to traffic. Only the section between Florida 202/J. Turner Butler Road and U.S. 90/Beach Boulevard remains incomplete.

Future Aspirations

Interstate 295 is the planned designation for the future full beltway. The portion of the eastern beltway freeway is designated as Florida 9A. All Interstate and U.S. routes have a hidden state designation in Florida. Florida 9A exists partially as a freeway and partially as a surface boulevard to the east of Interstate 95.

Construction began on Florida 9A in the 1980s, with the N.B. Broward Bridge (Dames Point Bridge) over the Saint Johns River opening to traffic in March of 1989. This included the segment from Heckscher Drive south to Monument Road. From there south to St Johns Bluff opened December of 1993. By March of 1995, Florida 9A extends northward to U.S. 17 from Heckscher Drive. This concluded the northeast quadrant of Florida 9A as it currently stands between Interstate 95 and Florida 10/Atlantic Boulevard.1

The southeastern quadrant entails two segments at present. From J. Turner Butler Boulevard (Florida 202) south to Baymeadows Road opened to traffic April of 1998. An extension of this freeway southward to U.S. 1 opened October 2000. This brings Florida 9A to its current 2003 extent.1

The next three years will see the completion of the beltway. By 2005 Florida 9A will continue west of U.S. 1 to Interstate 95/295. This is the most expensive aspect of the Florida 9A project, totally $101 million for a 1.3 mile section of highway. This segment includes the major interchange reconstruction and expansion project at the current Interstate 295 southern terminal interchange. Also slated for completion by late 2004 is the $25.6 million Florida 9A segment from Florida 10/Atlantic Boulevard southward to U.S. 90/Beach Boulevard. The 2.6 mile segment will entail a four-lane freeway that parallels St. Johns Bluff Boulevard to the east. The existing interchange at Atlantic Boulevard will remain in place. Additions to it will result in a new southbound on-ramp and northbound off-ramp at St. Johns Bluff Road south of Atlantic Boulevard. 2006 will see the two segments united and the completion of the J.T. Butler Boulevard interchange. At that time the $145 million in remaining projects will be complete. It is hoped that with the completion of the beltway, traffic congestion on Interstate 95 will decrease. The Florida 9B/Interstate 795 leg of the project is currently in the design phase.1

In early December 2003, construction will begin on a 2,000-foot-long trestle for Florida 9A over Sawmill Slough near the University of North Florida. When this occurs, every remaining segment of Florida 9A not already open to traffic will be under construction. This $31 million final portion consists of roadway between Beach and Butler Boulevards. This final piece of the overall $445 million project will coincide with the opening of the final six miles of Florida 9A, filling the two missing links of the loop. When the Butler Boulevard interchange is reconstructed with four elevated ramps, Interstate 295 can be christened to the east of Interstate 95.2

James Allen writes that the north end of Interstate 295 is actually at U.S. 17 (Main Street):
"There is a sign at the exit that says (END 295, BEGIN Florida 9A)...Florida 9A now extends from (north end) U.S. 17, Main Street, to St. Johns Bluff Boulevard (south end), slightly past Atlantic Boulevard (Florida 10). There is also a new, two-mile section of Florida 9A from J. Turner Butler Boulevard (Florida 202) and St. Johns Bluff Road south to Baymeadows Road. As of Fall 2000, crews were working on the Florida 9A extension to U.S. 1 south of the Avenues Mall.

The future plans of Florida 9A include some routing parallel to St. Johns Bluff Blvd from its current northern section-southern terminus to J. Turner Butler Blvd (Florida 202)/St. Johns Bluff Road (its southern section-northern terminus), and the extension of Florida 9A from Baymeadows south to the intersection with Interstate 95/Interstate 295, with an extension called Florida 9B (eventually to be designated as Interstate 795) as a spur to south Interstate 95. After everything is complete, Florida 9A will be renamed Interstate 295, and you can go in infinite circles through Jacksonville (not around Jacksonville, since Jacksonville is technically all of Duval county)."

Southern Terminus - Interstate 95 - southern Jacksonville, Florida
Perspective from Interstate 295 south
The first sign bridge on Interstate 295 southbound for the southern terminus at Interstate 95. The Jacksonville bypass sees only one lane allocated for Interstate 95 south towards Saint Augustine. This scene in the future will be drastically different with Interstate 295 shifting to new mainline lanes to the right to continue westward beyond Interstate 95. Photo taken by Daniel Davis (10/05/02).
Second in the series of sign bridges on Interstate 295 south for Interstate 95. Construction is present in this photograph as supports are already in place for the eventual sweeping flyover from Interstate 295 south to Interstate 95 north. The present roadway and ramp configuration to Interstate 95 in this scene will be removed with the project completion. Photo taken by Daniel Davis (10/05/02).
The final Interstate 95 sign bridge and current terminus of Interstate 295. Distance via Interstate 95 south to the historic city of Saint Augustine is 25 miles and the Interstate 4 junction at Daytona Beach is 77 miles. Photo taken by Daniel Davis (10/05/02).
Continuing onto the Interstate 95 southbound ramp from Interstate 295 south. Construction is bringing a new flyover that will replace a left-hand ramp between Interstate 95 northbound to Interstate 295 north. A cloverleaf ramp will eventually be situated at this location for Florida 9A southbound to Interstate 95 southbound. Photo taken by Daniel Davis (10/05/02).
Perspective from Interstate 95 south
First of three sign bridges on Interstate 95 southbound for the northbound return ramp to Interstate 295/Exit 337. Similar to the northbound direction, Orange Park is the control city in use. The next interchange of Interstate 95 southbound is Exit 329. A new interchange will be constructed in between here and there when Interstate 795 is completed from the new Interstate 295 to the east southward. Photo taken by Steve Hanudel (08/14/05).
Drawing closer to the Interstate 95/295 Exit 337 interchange. In the old sequential exit numbering system of Interstate 95, this was Exit 97. Photo taken by Steve Hanudel (08/14/05).
The right-hand two lanes depart for Interstate 295 north (which actually heads westward across the Saint Johns River before turning north) on Interstate 95 south at Exit 337. Photo taken by Daniel Davis (10/20/02).
This view is on the transition ramp to Interstate 295 and Florida 9A at Exit 337. This interchange was completely reconstructed to accommodate the eventual extension of Interstate 295 onto the eastern half of the Jacksonville beltway (currently signed as Florida 9A). Interstate 95 south continues through the interchange en route to St. Augustine, Daytona Beach, and South Florida. Photo taken by Steve Hanudel (08/14/05).
Next Three Interstate Junctions for Interstate 95 south
Interstate 4 77 miles at South Daytona, FL
Interstate 595
313 miles at Fort Lauderdale, FL
Interstate 195 333 miles at Miami, FL
Perspective from Interstate 95 north
Interstate 295 enters the Jacksonville metropolitan area 2.50 miles south of the split with Interstate 295 northbound. Photo taken by Carter Buchanan (01/03).
What was once Exit 97, is now Exit 337 on Interstate 95 north. This one and a half mile diagram guide sign shows that Interstate 295 northbound will begin from the left. The control point of Orange Park, is a suburb to the southwest of Jacksonville along the Saint Johns River. Jacksonville Naval Air Station is also situated near Orange Park. Photo by Mike Tantillo (03/02).
Diagrammatical sign bridge 1.50 miles south of Interstate 295 with the new Exit 337 number in place. Photo taken by Carter Buchanan (01/03).
Now one mile south of Exit 337, Interstate 295 is allocated only one lane as it departs from the left ahead. Construction signs are in place to warn of the interchange rebuild project. Photo taken by Carter Buchanan (01/03).
The present Exit 337 off-ramp to Interstate 295 northbound from Interstate 95 north. The first interchange of Interstate 295 is Exit 3 with Saint Augustine Road. Interstate 295 will reach Florida 13 at Exit 5 and U.S. 17 at Exit 10. Photo taken by Carter Buchanan (01/03).
Next Three Interstate Junctions for Interstate 95 north
Interstate 10 13 miles at Jacksonville, FL
Interstate 295 25 miles at north Jacksonville, FL
Interstate 16 144 miles at Pooler, GA
Northern Terminus - Interstate 95 - northern Jacksonville, Florida
Perspective from Interstate 295 north
Approaching the northern terminus of Interstate 295 at the one-mile sign bridge for Exits 35A/B/Interstate 95 (old Exits 14A/B). Interstate 295 ends as the beltway continues eastward via Florida 9A. Florida 9A is the unsigned counterpart for all of Interstate 295. Vidcap taken by Alex Nitzman (10/98).
The same set of overhead guide signs on Interstate 295 north/eastbound as displayed above but with Exit 35A/B tabs in place. Jacksonville International Airport is located four miles north of this interchange. Photo taken by Daniel Davis (10/20/02).
Interstate 295 comes to an end as traffic for downtown Jacksonville via Interstate 95 south departs to the right. The signed section of Florida 9A begins at this interchange and proceeds east then south across the St. Johns River via the N.B. Broward Bridge. Vidcap taken by Alex Nitzman (10/98).
The exit renumbering project of 2002 sees Exit tabs installed on Interstate 295 east at the Interstate 95 southbound ramp/Exit 35A. As displayed with the above vidcap, there were no tabs ever in place on this particular sign bridge. Photo taken by Daniel Davis (10/20/02).
The final exit of Interstate 295 east is for the left-hand departure of Interstate 95 northbound/Exit 35B. Again the pull-through panel shows Florida 9A solely. However as the next photograph suggest, Interstate 295 sticks around through to the U.S. 17 interchange. Photo taken by Daniel Davis (10/20/02).
Although the previous sign bridge at the Interstate 95 northbound ramp indicates that eastbound travelers are now on Florida 9A, the end Interstate 295 guide sign is posted at the U.S. 17/Main Street crossing. Photo taken by Daniel Davis (10/20/02).
Perspective from Florida 9A north
Northbound Florida 9A as it approaches the junction with Interstates 95 and 295. The median placed guide sign rests just before the bridges over U.S. 17/Main Street. The back of the southbound Florida 9A guide sign is also in view. This particular sign is the End Interstate 295/Begin Florida 9A panel displayed above. Photo taken by Daniel Davis (10/20/02).
Northbound Florida 9A transitions into Interstate 295 at this sign bridge for the Interstate 95 northbound ramp/Exit 35B. Traffic leaving the Jacksonville Beltway see another 20 miles to the Georgia state line and 126 miles to Savannah. Photo taken by Daniel Davis (10/20/02).
In between the Exit 35B and 35A ramps is this extra guide sign for the left-hand exit to Interstate 95 south. Seven miles stand between Exit 362 for Interstate 295 on Interstate 95 and downtown Jacksonville. Photo taken by Daniel Davis (10/20/02).
Southbound Interstate 295 at Exit 35A/Interstate 95 south. Beltway travelers will have to wait another five miles before having the opportunity to depart the freeway. Exit 30 serves northwest Jacksonville at Florida 104/Dunn Avenue. Photo taken by Daniel Davis (10/20/02).
This guide sign with distances to Interstate 10 and 95 greet Interstate 295 motorists as they leave Interstate 95 and Florida 9A. This concept is not unusual in the Interstate system for a beltway, as Interstate 285 in Georgia features mileage signs for the junctions with Interstates 20, 75, and 85. Photo taken by Daniel Davis (10/20/02).
Perspective from Interstate 95 south
Southbound Interstate 95 approaches the northern junction with Interstate 295 and Florida 9A. Plans call for Florida 9A to be upgraded as a continuation of Interstate 295 once the eastern beltway around Jacksonville is complete. Photo taken by Steve Hanudel (08/14/05).
The first ramp along southbound Interstate 95 connects to Interstate 295 south, and the second ramp connects to southbound Florida 9A. Photo taken by Steve Hanudel (08/14/05).
Southbound Interstate 95 reaches Exit 362B, Junction Interstate 295 south. The next exit is Exit 362A, Junction Florida 9A south (eastern belt route). Photo taken by Steve Hanudel (08/14/05).

Sources:

  1. www.SR9A.Info. FloridaDOT.
  2. "Loop nears milestone." Times-Union (Jacksonville), October 14, 2003.
  3. Florida's Interstates: A Half-Century of Progress (official Florida Department of Transportation site)

Page Updated May 20, 2006.

 
Mileage

State Florida
Mileage 35.51
Cities Jacksonville
Junctions Interstate 95, Interstate 10, Interstate 95
Source: October 31, 2002 Interstate Route Log and Finders List
I-295 Florida Annual Average Daily Traffic

County From To AADT Composite
Duval Interstate 95 Exit 3/ Old Augustine Rd. 103,000
Duval Exit 3/ Old Augustine Rd. Exit 5/ Florida 13 103,000
Duval Exit 5/ Florida 13 Exit 10/ U.S. 17 112,000
Duval Exit 10/ U.S. 17 Exit 12/ Florida 21 91,000
Duval Exit 12/ Florida 21 Exit 16/ Florida 134 86,000
Duval Exit 16/ Florida 134 Exit 17/ Florida 208 98,000
Duval Exit 17/ Florida 208 Exit 19/ Florida 228 108,500
Duval Exit 19/ Florida 228 Exit 21/ Interstate 10 100,000
Duval Exit 21/ Interstate 10 Exit 22/ Commonwealth Blvd. 76,000
Duval Exit 22/ Commonwealth Blvd. Exit 25/ Pritchard Road 61,791
Duval Exit 25/ Pritchard Road Exit 28/ U.S. 1/23 52,000
Duval Exit 28/ U.S. 1/23 Exit 30/ Florida 104 46,500
Duval Exit 30/ Florida 104 Exit 32/ Florida 115 44,500
Duval Exit 32/ Florida 115 Exit 33/ Duval Road 41,000
Duval Exit 33/ Duval Road Exit 35/ Interstate 95 48,500
Source: Florida Traffic Information 2002 CD-Rom

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