Interstate 459 Alabama

I-459 Alabama
History
North End
South End

Overview

Interstate 459 forms a beltway around the south side of Birmingham between I-59/20 at Bessemer and I-59 near Trussville. The freeway functions as a bypass for I-59/20 west to Tuscaloosa and Meridian, Mississippi, I-20 east to Anniston and Atlanta, Georgia and I-59 north to Gadsden and Chattanooga, Tennessee. Speed limits vary between 65 and 70 miles per hour along the mostly six-lane suburban freeway.

History

The Birmingham bypass was designated as Interstate 59B in 1958. It was renumbered to Interstate 459 by 1961. Work on the freeway began in 19681. The first section of I-459 opened in 1978 between I-20 and I-59 between Irondale and northeast Birmingham.2 The final portion of I-459, between I-59/20 at Bessemer and State Route 150 in Hoover, opened to traffic in late 1984. The 5.2 mile segment cost $28.7-million to build.2

Route Information

  • North End – Trussville, AL

  • South End – Bessemer, AL

  • Mileage – 32.80

  • Cities – Bessemer, Hoover, Vestavia Hills, Birmingham, Mountain Brook, Irondale, Trussville

  • JunctionsI-20 I-59 I-65

Source: December 31, 2018 Interstate Route Log and Finders List

I-459 Annual Average Daily Traffic (AADT)

Source: 2017 AADT – Alabama Traffic Data
ALDOT Transportation Planning Bureau


Highway Guides

North End I-59 – Trussville, Alabama

I-459 North at I-59

I-459 north at I-59 - Birmingham, AL
I-459 north at I-59 - Birmingham, AL

Interstate 459 bends northwest from the diamond interchange (Exit 31) with Derby Parkway toward U.S. 11 and I-59 near Roebuck Plaza. 01/19/13

I-459 north at I-59 - Birmingham, AL

A lane drop occurs along northbound I-459 at Exit 32 for U.S. 11 into the city of Trussville. Two lanes proceed north into the directional T interchange (Exit 33) with Interstate 59. 01/19/13

I-459 north at I-59 - Birmingham, AL

Two lanes continue northward onto Interstate 59 toward Gadsden and Chattanooga, Tennessee. The left side ramp leads back into Birmingham. 01/19/13

I-59 South at I-459

I-59 south at I-459 - Trussville, AL

Two miles north of the I-59 southbound split with Interstate 459 (Exit 137) between Red and Little Sand Mountains. 06/25/12

I-59 south at I-459 - Trussville, AL

The left exit for Interstate 459 south departs from I-59 south ahead of Roebuck Plaza in northeast Birmingham. The forthcoming exchange lies 12 miles northeast of Downtown Birmingham. 06/25/12

I-59 south at I-459 - Trussville, AL

I-459 comprises a regional bypass of Birmingham for points south along I-65 including Montgomery and west along I-59/20 including Tuscaloosa. 06/25/12

I-59 south at I-459 - Trussville, AL

Southbound I-59 reaches Left Exit 137 for Interstate 459 to Irondale, Mountain Brook and Vestavia Hills. 06/25/12

I-59 North at I-459

I-59 north at I-459 - Birmingham, AL

The first sign for the north end of Interstate 459 along I-59 northbound appears at the Valley Drive underpass and the Brookhurst community in Birmingham. 06/09/17

I-59 north at I-459 - Birmingham, AL

Interstate 59 arcs across Red Mountain through Sadler Gap, switching sides with parallel U.S. 11 ahead of Roebuck Plaza and the three-wye interchange (Exit 137) with I-459. 06/09/17

I-59 north at I-459 - Birmingham, AL

Button copy signs for I-459 south at Exit 137 date from 1978. Beyond Interstate 459, I-59 travels through the city of Trussville and reaches Gadsden in 50 miles. 06/09/17

I-59 north at I-459 - Birmingham, AL

Exit 137 departs Interstate 59 north for I-459 south to Irondale, Vestavia Hills and Hoover. Flyovers between the two freeways pass over the northbound mainline ahead of Little Sand Mountain. 06/09/17

South End I-20 I-59 – Bessemer, Alabama

I-459 South at I-59 I-20

I-459 south at I-59/20 - Bessemer, AL

Two miles out from the trumpet interchange joining Interstate 459 with I-59/20 at McCalla. 06/09/17

I-459 south at I-59/20 - McCalla, AL

Crossing over 4th Avenue SW, I-459 leaves the Bessmer city limits. The forthcoming exchange with I-59/20 lies 33 miles northeast of Tuscaloosa and 18 miles southwest of Downtown Birmingham. 06/09/17

I-459 south at I-59/20 - McCalla, AL

An end shield is posted for Interstate 459 southbound. 06/09/17

I-459 south at I-59/20 - McCalla, AL

Two lanes default onto Interstates 20 west / I-59 south to Tuscaloosa and Meridian, Mississippi. I-59/20 north return motorists to Bessemer nearby. 06/09/17

I-20 East I-59 North at I-459

I-59/20 south at I-459 - Bessemer, AL

U.S. 11/SR 5 combine with I-59/20 southwest from Bessemer City at the preceding interchange to Interstate 459 north (Exit 106). 06/09/17

I-59/20 south at I-459 - Bessemer, AL

Original construction of I-59/20 southwest from Bessemer to the trumpet interchange (Exit 106) with Interstate 459 directly replaced the previous four lane alignment of U.S. 11 and SR 5. 06/09/17

I-59/20 south at I-459 - McCalla, AL

I-59/20 south crosses Fivemile Creek a half mile ahead of the loop ramp (Exit 106) for Interstate 459 north. I-459 travels east across Shades Valley 15 miles to the four level interchange with I-65 at Hoover. 06/09/17

I-59/20 south at I-459 - McCalla, AL

Exit 106 departs I-59/20 south, 8.4 miles from the separation of U.S. 11/SR 5 in Tuscaloosa County. Traffic from I-459 south expands the freeway to six overall lanes. 06/09/17

I-20 West I-59 South at I-459

I-59/20 north at I-459 - Bessemer, AL

One mile south of the I-59/20 separation with I-459 east. Regional traffic to Gadsden and Atlanta, Georgia is directed to take Interstate 459 around Birmingham. 06/09/17

I-59/20 north at I-459 - Bessemer, AL

I-59/20 and U.S. 11/SR 5 advance northeast between McAshen Mountain and Red Ridge to Exit 106. 06/09/17

I-59/20 north at I-459 - Bessemer, AL

Exit 106 departs with two lanes for Interstate 459 north to Hoover, Vestavia Hills and the northern Shelby County suburbs. 06/09/17

I-459 North End Throwback

I-59/20 north at I-459 - 2003

Widening of I-59/20 from four to six lanes included the replacement of this ground level guide sign with an overhead assembly. Photo taken by Chris Patriarca (05/19/03).

I-59/20 north at I-459 - 2003

One mile south of Exit 106 during construction to six lane I-59/20. Photo taken by Chris Patriarca (05/19/03).

Sources:

  1. “Nashville firm low bidder.” Gadsden Times (AL), January 24, 1981.
  2. “Section of I-459 may be open soon.” The Tuscaloosa News (AL), November 28, 1984.

Page updated May 4, 2020.