Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Interstate 264 (Virginia)
Interstate 264 is an unusual 3-digit interstate that contains both a bypass and a spur off Interstate 64 in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia. It also features drawbridge, a rarity on the U.S. Interstate Highway System.
The Elizabeth River separates Norfolk and Portsmouth, Virginia. The bypass section of I-264 is a direct connection to downtown Norfolk and Portsmouth, and links the two cities through the Berkley Bridge, a cantilevered drawbridge over the East Branch of the Elizabeth River, and the dual-tube Downtown Tunnel under the South Branch of the Elizabeth River. Interstate 464 connects with it at the point in the Berkley section of Norfolk between the the Berkley Bridge and the Downtown Tunnel.
The western end of I-264 connects with Interstate 664 at a portion of the Hampton Roads Beltway near Bower's Hill and the Great Dismal Swamp. The bypass segment of I-264, which passes through downtown Norfolk and Portsmouth, is about a mile shorter than the main leg it bypasses.
The spur section of I-264 is effectively a continuation of the bypass portion, running from its intersection with I-64 on the eastern portion of the Hampton Roads Beltway due east toward Virginia Beach's oceanfront seaside resort district. This portion was originally built with toll revenue bond financing as the Virginia Beach Expressway, a toll road designated as Virginia State Route 44. After the bonds were retired and tolls were removed in 1995, Virginia Route 44 was converted to a freeway, and in 1999, the I-264 designation was added.
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