Interstate 55 or I -55 is an Interstate Highway in the U.S. state of Missouri. I-55 forms a north-south route through the southeastern part of the state, paralleling the Mississippi River from the Arkansas border at Holland and the Illinois border at St. Louis. I-55 is 238 miles long in Missouri.
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I-55 at Hayti and the interchange with I-155.
I-55 at Cape Girardeau.
I-55 at Barnhart, just south of St. Louis.
I-55 runs through eastern Missouri, parallel to the Mississippi River. Interstate 55 in Arkansas comes from Memphis and crosses the border with the state of Missouri near Blytheville. Here, I-55 passes through the Missouri Bootheel, the southeasternmost part of the state. Characteristic of this region are the flat agricultural areas, with hardly any afforestation. Most places in this region are small. At Caruthersville, [[Interstate 155 in Missouri|Interstate 155 exits to Dyersburg in Tennessee. Sometimes I-55 runs close to the meandering Mississippi River and close to the dikes at New Madrid.
I-55 has straight stretches through the flat meadows. Interstate 57 begins at Sikeston, which is a more direct route to Chicago. The US 60 also connects to this cloverleaf. US 61 runs parallel to I-55. I-55 then passes the town of Cape Girardeau, after which the landscape has some more forest and elevation changes, I-55 here leads through the eastern foothills of the Ozarks. The Mississippi River also flows here not too far from I-55.
From Festus, I-55 has 2×3 lanes, this is the southernmost place that still belongs to the St. Louis area of influence, although the suburbanization along I-55 is not very extensive until one gets closer to the city. From Barnhart there are 2×4 lanes and from Arnold even 2×5 lanes. The Mehlville suburb crosses the St. Louis Beltway, which consists of Interstate 255 to the east and Interstate 270 to the west. I-55 then has 2×4 lanes and leads through the older suburbs of the city. This area is heavily built-up and I-55 runs part of it a short distance from the Mississippi River. Just before downtown St. Louis, Interstate 44 ends at I-55. Just before the center follows the junction with theInterstate 64, after which I-55 crosses the Mississippi River, which also forms the border with the state of Illinois, via the Poplar Street Bridge. Interstate 55 in Illinois then continues through East St. Louis toward Springfield and Chicago.
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I-55 was initially built at a fairly rapid pace. The first part opened in 1960 south of downtown, a short 2-kilometer stretch. By the late 1960s, large sections were completed, from St. Louis to Crystal City and from New Madrid to just north of Cape Girardeau. Some longer missing links were around Perryville and Ste. Genevieve, and to the far south at Caruthersville. These links were opened in 1973 and 1974, establishing I-55 through Missouri.
In the 1970s, a northward extension of I-55 along the west side of downtown St. Louis was planned to have interchanges with I-44 and I-64. The interchange with I-44 is prepared for this, as is that of I-64. This part of the highway was never built. What number it should have been is unknown, possibly I-355.
|Exit 207||Exit 208||2 km||1960|
|Exit 89||Exit 105||26 km||1963|
|Exit 0||Exit 4||6 km||1964|
|Exit 197||Exit 202||8 km||1964|
|Exit 66||Exit 89||37 km||1965|
|Exit 44||Exit 66||35 km||1966|
|Exit 192||Exit 197||8 km||1966|
|Exit 202||Exit 204||3 km||1966|
|Exit 176||Exit 192||26 km||1967|
|Exit 204||Exit 207||5 km||1967|
|Exit 27||Exit 44||27 km||1968|
|Exit 174||Exit 176||3 km||1968|
|Exit 19||Exit 27||13 km||1970|
|Exit 165||Exit 174||14 km||1971|
|Exit 135||Exit 165||48 km||1972|
|Exit 105||Exit 135||48 km||1973|
|Exit 4||Exit 19||24 km||1974|
The rural portion of I-55 is pretty quiet, hovering around 20,000 mvt/day. Towards Saint Louis this rises to 124,000 just before the ring, after which it drops again to 100,000, but further on it rises again to 138,000 mvt/24h. 99,000 vehicles cross the Mississippi River every day. These are 3 highways. Congestion is not too bad on these routes.
|Exit 0||Exit 185||2×2|
|Exit 185||Exit 190||2×4||St. Louis|
|Exit 190||Exit 196||2×5||St. Louis|
|Exit 196||Exit 210||2×4||St. Louis|