Interstate 878 New York

Interstate 878 New York
History
East End
West End

Overview

Signed as New York Route 878, Interstate 878 overlays the portion of the Nassau Expressway in Queens built with Interstate Highway funds. Just 0.70 miles in length between Interstate 678 (Van Wyck Expressway) and John F. Kennedy Expressway, I-878 is the shortest Interstate in the system. Only the eastbound roadway for the Nassau Expressway was constructed from NY 27 (Conduit Boulevard) at Ozone Park to JFK Expressway on the north side of John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK). Westbound lanes accompany the at-grade portion of the Nassau Expressway from Rockaway Boulevard to Belt Parkway ahead of the Van Wyck Expressway. The I-878 mileage references just the eastbound roadway of the limited access section.

History

Originally planned to be part of Interstate 78 extending southeast from Lower Manhattan through Brooklyn to Queens, the Nassau Expressway opened in 1971 with just a eastbound roadway. The proposed alignments for I-78 through Brooklyn and Queens were eliminated in 1971, but the Nassau Expressway segment remained signed as I-78 until 1989.1 The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) previously deleted I-78 along the Nassau Expressway on June 23, 1969, opting to redesignate it as Interstate 878.

The unconstructed westbound lanes of I-878 were scrapped in 1981 due to community opposition and other issues. The single roadway extends between Cross Bay Boulevard and Interstate 678 (Van Wyck Expressway) just south of the Belt (Southern) Parkway. East of John F. Kennedy Expressway, both directions of Nassau Expressway were built along an at-grade arterial to a jug handle intersection with Hangar Road. Nassau Expressway extends southeast into Nassau County as Rockaway Boulevard.

Route Information

  • East End – Queens, New York, NY

  • West End – Queens, New York, NY

  • Mileage – 0.70

  • Cities – New York City

  • JunctionsI-678

Source: December 31, 2021 Interstate Route Log and Finders List

I-878 Annual Average Daily Traffic (AADT)

Location Vehicles per day
Lefferts Bl to I-678 55,827
I-678 to JFK Expwy 44,571
JFK Expwy to Rockaway Bl 60,669

Source: 2017-19 AADT NYSDOT Traffic Data Viewer

Although not shielded, NYSDOT reference markers identify the route as “878I” for the freeway portion within the vicinity of Interstate 678 and John F. Kennedy Expressway. The I suffixed on NYSDOT reference markers identifies an Interstate highway. According to Steve Anderson’s site, I-878 shields were posted in 1989 when the Interstate designation was first confirmed.

Prior to the renumbering of I-278 and I-895 in Bronx, New York by AASHTO on June 23, 1969:, the Interstate 878 designation was reserved for the Bruckner Expressway east from the Sheridan Expressway (I-895) to the Bruckner Interchange with I-95. During that time period, Interstate 278 followed the Sheridan Expressway north to the Cross Bronx Expressway. It was proposed to extend 5.2 miles further along an alignment over U.S. 1 (Boston Post Road) northeast to Interstate 95 at the New England Thruway. The Sheridan Expressway extension however was dropped in 1971, along with several other metropolitan expressway proposals.2 I-278 was instead realigned over planned I-878 and the short section of the Sheridan Expressway was redesignated as Interstate 895. For more, visit Steve Anderson’s Sheridan Expressway.

I-878 NYSDOT Functional Class Map

The section of the Nassau Expressway assigned as I-878 runs east from I-678 to John F. Kennedy Expressway.

I-878 NYSDOT Functional Class Map

East End – New York Route 878 / North Hangar Road near Springfield Gardens, Queens, New York

I-878 East at NY 878 John F. Kennedy Expwy

I-878 east at JFK Expwy - Queens, NY

Just a half mile east of Interstate 678, NY 878 (Nassau Expressway) meets John F. Kennedy Expressway at Exit 2 S. 12/17/17

I-878 east at JFK Expwy - Queens, NY

JFK Expressway is an unnumbered highway connecting the JFK Airport passenger terminal with Belt Parkway. These signs were replaced by 2019. 12/17/17

I-878 east at JFK Expwy - Queens, NY

Interstate 878 east concludes at the loop ramp (Exit 2N) joining Nassau Expressway (NY 878) with JFK Expressway north to NY 27 (S Conduit Avenue) and Belt Parkway east at Springfield Gardens, Queens. 08/29/05

I-878 east at NY 878 - Queens, NY

Curving southeast around the periphery of JFK Airport, NY 878 (Nassau Expressway) next intersects N Hangar Road at Exit 3 adjacent to N Boundary Road and air cargo facilities. Cancelled plans called for the continuation of the Nassau Expressway southeast along Rockaway Boulevard toward Atlantic Beach. 08/29/05

West End – I-678 New York 878 – Queens, New York

NY 27 East at NY 878

NY 27 east at NY 878 - Queens

NY 27 follows the initial segment of the Nassau Expressway as it branches southeast from Conduit Avenue. Forming the south frontage road for the Belt Parkway east to Nassau County, NY 27 route returns to Conduit Avenue ahead of Lefferts Boulevard. 12/17/17

NY 27 east at NY 878 - Queens

NY 878 (Nassau Expressway) east connects NY 27 with Interstate 678 (Van Wyck Expressway) and John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK). 12/17/17

Belt Pkwy east at NY 878 - Queens

Exit 19 leaves Belt Parkway eastbound for a flyover spanning both NY 27 and NY 878 ahead of ramps to Nassau Expressway and Lefferts Boulevard. 12/17/17

NY 878 East at I-878 I-678

NY 878 east at I-678/878 - Queens

NY 878 (Nassau Expressway) shifts northward through an industrial area ahead of 134th Street and the directional cloverleaf interchange (Exits 1 S/N) with I-678 (Van Wyck Expressway). 12/17/17

NY 878 east at I-678/878 - Queens

Exit 1 S curves southward onto Van Wyck Expressway ahead of general aviation and rental car facilities of JFK Airport. 12/17/17

NY 878 east at I-678/878 - Queens

I-678 (Van Wyck Expressway) spurs south to the passenger terminal at John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK). I-678 north continues between South Ozone Park and South Jamaica to Kew Gardens in Queens. 12/17/17

I-878 east at I-678 - Queens

A two lane loop ramp at Exit 1 N connects Interstate 878 (Nassau Expressway) with I-678 (Van Wyck Expressway) north to Flushing Meadows Corona Park and the Whitestone Bridge to Bronx. 12/17/17

I-678 North at I-878 NY 878

I-678 north at I-878 - Queens, NY

Interstate 678 (Van Wyck Expressway) passes under the Red and Green AirTrain transit lines and separates with Exit 1 A for NY 878 (Nassau Expressway) and the Belt Parkway east to Long Island. 12/17/17

I-678 South at I-878 NY 878

I-678 south at I-878 - Queens, NY

Left Exit 1E for NY 27 (S Conduit Avenue) and Belt Parkway east departs alongside Exit 1 from I-678 (Van Wyck Expressway) south to NY 878 (Nassau Expressway) east. 08/29/05

I-678 south at I-878 - Queens, NY

I-678 spurs south into John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) beyond the exchange with NY 878 (Nassau Expressway) east. I-878 connects the Van Wyck Expressway with John F. Kennedy Expressway nearby. 08/29/05

I-678 south at I-878 - Queens, NY

Left Exit 1E ties into Exit 1A from I-678 north to Belt Parkway east and NY 27 (S Conduit Avenue). Exit 1 joins I-878 just ahead of Exit 2 S/N for John F. Kennedy Expressway. 08/29/05

Sources:

  1. New York 878: Nassau Expressway. NYCRoads.com.
  2. Sheridan Expressway. NYCRoads.com.

Page updated June 8, 2022.