Interstate 40 in North Carolina

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Interstate 40 marker

Interstate 40
Route information
Maintained by North Carolina DOT
Length:423.55 mi[1] (681.64 km)
Existed:1956 – present
Major junctions
West end: I‑40 at Tennessee state line
  I‑26 / I‑240 / US 74 in Asheville
I‑240 / US 74A in Asheville
I‑77 in Statesville
I‑73 / US 421 in Greensboro
I‑85 near Greensboro
I‑540 / NC 540 in Durham
I‑440 / US 1 / US 64 in Raleigh
I‑95 near Benson
I‑140 / US 17 near Wilmington
East end: US 117 / NC 132 in Wilmington
Counties:Haywood, Buncombe, McDowell, Burke, Catawba, Iredell, Davie, Forsyth, Guilford, Alamance, Orange, Durham, Wake, Johnston, Sampson, Duplin, Pender, New Hanover
Highway system
NC 39NC 41
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This article is about the section of Interstate 40 in North Carolina. For the entire length of the highway, see Interstate 40.

Interstate 40 marker

Interstate 40
Route information
Maintained by North Carolina DOT
Length:423.55 mi[1] (681.64 km)
Existed:1956 – present
Major junctions
West end: I‑40 at Tennessee state line
  I‑26 / I‑240 / US 74 in Asheville
I‑240 / US 74A in Asheville
I‑77 in Statesville
I‑73 / US 421 in Greensboro
I‑85 near Greensboro
I‑540 / NC 540 in Durham
I‑440 / US 1 / US 64 in Raleigh
I‑95 near Benson
I‑140 / US 17 near Wilmington
East end: US 117 / NC 132 in Wilmington
Counties:Haywood, Buncombe, McDowell, Burke, Catawba, Iredell, Davie, Forsyth, Guilford, Alamance, Orange, Durham, Wake, Johnston, Sampson, Duplin, Pender, New Hanover
Highway system
NC 39NC 41

Interstate 40 runs 421 miles (678 km) through the state of North Carolina from the Tennessee state line in the west to its eastern terminus in Wilmington. Interstate 40 begins at the Tennessee state line in Haywood County and runs through the state until it reaches its eastern terminus at US 117/NC 132 in Wilmington. The Interstate runs through the cities of Asheville, Winston-Salem, Greensboro, Durham, Raleigh, and ends in Wilmington. The unofficial name for Interstate 40 is the Blue Star Memorial Highway, which is to pay tribute to the US Armed Forces. The road a various other names along its routing.

Interstate 40 began in 1956 with construction in the Pigeon River Gorge. This section of Interstate 40 was the first part of I-40 in the entire nation and was completed in 1968. Construction continued through the 1950s and 1960s. In 1971 the North Carolina State Highway Commission approved a plan to extend Interstate 40 to Interstate 95 near Benson. In 1988 the final section of Interstate 40 between Tennessee and Raleigh opened. The last portion of Interstate 40 from Raleigh to Wilmington opened on June 29, 1990.

Route description[edit]

Interstate 40 enters North Carolina at the state line near Waterville. Interstate 40 immediately starts winding through the Pigeon River Gorge. I-40 goes through a set of tunnels. When the tunnels opened in 1968 they were the first Interstate tunnels east of Mississippi River. I-40 then goes down a steep grade for the next 16 miles. Just south of exit 7 I-40 encounters another tunnel, this one is for eastbound traffic only. The tunnel goes through Hurricane Mountain.[2] The westbound lanes use a rock cut through hurricane mountain. A short distance after the tunnel is the North Carolina Welcome Center. Interstate 40 continues toward Asheville. Interstate 40 then merges with US 74 (Great Smoky Mountain Parkway). I-40 and US 74 encounters the Interstate 26, Interstate 240 interchange in the southwestern part of the city. The interchange is the current western terminus of Interstate 240 and the historic terminus of Interstate 26. Interstate 40 then goes along the south side of Asheville, north of the Biltmore Estate towards Hickory.[3] I-240 and I-40 have another interchange before I-40 leaves the Asheville area. Interstate 40 goes south of Black Mountain and Marion, and north of Conover.[4] When I-40 enters Hickory it has a clover interchange with US 321. Interstate 40 then heads south of Hickory and crosses Catawba River.[5] I-40 enters Statesville north of the city. It has major interchanges with US 64 and US 21 before utilizing a clover interchange with Interstate 77. I-40 heads northeast towards Winston-Salem passing Mocksville and Clemmons. When Interstate 40 enters Winston-Salem it has another major interchange this time with US 421 and Interstate 40 Business. I-40 Business/US 421 head north to go through downtown Winston-Salem while I-40 goes just south of the city.[6] Interstate 40 has another clover interchange with US 52/US 311/NC 8.[7] US 311 run a concurrency with Interstate 40 for 2.1 miles (3.4 km). Interstate 74/US 311 exit off to the south while I-40 heads back northeast to meet up with US 421 and Interstate 40 Business.[7] US 421 runs a concurrency with I-40 into Greensboro.[7][7][8]

Interstate 40 enters the Greensboro area at the I-73/US 421/I-840 interchange. This interchange is the east end of the US 421 concurrency with I-40 and is also the planned western terminus of Interstate 840.[2] From there Interstate 40 heads through southwestern Greensboro. Interstate 40 passes Wendover Place and Four Seasons Town Centre before having another large interchange with US 220.[7] 1 mile after the interchange with US 220[7] I-85 Business/US 29/US 70 all merge into I-40/US 220 for one large concurrency. The road is generally a six-lane freeway through the entire concurrency between Interstate 40 and Interstate 85 Business.[7]

The six routes of Death Valley in 2007. US 421 has since been rerouted; the shield was removed in 2009.

This 2.5-mile (4.0 km) corridor with concurrent routes ends in the east at the U.S. Highway 29/70/220/Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard junction. Both the beginning and ending interchanges of this corridor are quite unusual in design and are often operating at above full capacity, leading to frequent traffic jams and traffic incidents.[7][8][9]

I-40 through Greensboro officially bears the name Preddy Boulevard. The nickname "Death Valley" has been given to the area of Interstate 40 where Interstate 40 and Business Interstate 85 splits. The locals have given that area that name because of the high number of deaths due to car crashes in that area.[10][11] One major problem with the highway is that the U.S. 29/220/70 southbound lanes merge from the right, and exit to the left. Thus, through traffic on I-40 west and US 29 south (a major route from Virginia to Charlotte) must all merge to the other side of the freeway. A study conducted by state traffic engineers from May 1, 2006 to April 30, 2008 (the period between the I-85 relocation and I-40's relocation) concluded that "the Death Valley area" had an accident rate "higher than average for urban interstates ... but the [route] was safe anyway."[12] There were no fatalities during the study period, but a large number of rear-end collisions.[7][8][12]

I-40 merges with I-85 east of Greensboro ending the I-85 concurrency. I-40 and I-85 have a 31 miles (50 km) concurrency through Guilford, Alamance, and Orange Counties. The concurrency section uses I-85 exit numbers instead of I-40 exit numbers. The section goes south of Elon, Burlington, Graham, and Mebane. Interstate 40 breaks ways from Interstate 85 at exit 163, south of Hillsborough.[7][8]

After I-40 breaks away from I-85 it heads in a very southeasterly direction towards Chapel Hill. I-40 parallels NC 86 until NC 86 crosses I-40 at exit 266. I-40 is routed along northern Chapel Hill and then through southern Durham. I-40 enters the Research Triangle area after an interchange with NC 147. The Interstate varies in width, from four-lane to eight-lane depending on the location. It serves as a major route between Raleigh, Cary and Durham (the other being US-70). After leaving the Research Triangle area Interstate 40 has an interchange with Interstate 540 near the Raleigh-Durham International Airport. Several Interstate 40 exits serve Raleigh-Durham including, Aviation Parkway, Airport Blvd, and Interstate 540. I-40 continues to head southeast towards Downtown Raleigh. Interstate 40 is routed north of Cary and south of Umstead State Park. At Wade Avenue Interstate 40 bears right to head south. US 1, US 64, Interstate 440, and I-40. I-40 then runs a concurrency with US 64 along the south side of Raleigh before merging to the right to head toward Benson.[7][8]

Interstate 40 heads in a very southern direction until the interchange with Interstate 95. Within 5 miles from Raleigh, Interstate 40 has another concurrency with US 70. US 70 follows I-40 until the Clayton Bypass (exit 309). Interstate 40 continues south with exits at NC 42, NC 210, and NC 242. Interstate 40 then has an interchange with Interstate 95 near Benson, North Carolina. Interstate 40 then runs south towards Clinton an Warsaw. Starting near Faison Interstate 40 runs parallel with US 117 and this continues through the rest of the route. Most of the surrounding area of I-40 in Eastern North Carolina are rural so traffic is somewhat down on this section of I-40. A rest area exists off NC 24 in Warsaw. The median of I-40 widens to put the rest area between the eastbound and westbound lanes.[13] I-40 passes the Duplin Winery in Duplin County. As Interstate 40 nears Wilmington it passes Burgaw and then crosses the NE Cape Fear River. Interstate 40 has an interchange with Interstate 140/US 17. As I-40 nears its terminus the speed limit is set down to 55, instead of 70 which is in place from Garner on. Exit 420 is the last exit on I-40 before its terminus on US 117/NC 132[7][8][14]

Dedicated and memorial names[edit]

I-40 in North Carolina feature a few dedicated or memorialized stretches of freeway.


I-40/85 through Burlington


Construction on I-40 through North Carolina officially began in 1956 along the Pigeon River in Haywood County. This would be the first section of I-40 to be built anywhere in the country. This section was completed in 1968, and was among the first Interstate Highway tunnels east of the Mississippi River. Construction continued through the 1950s and 1960s, with much of the interstate being constructed in the 1960s.

The Durham Freeway began with a 1962 bond referendum.[18] The first section of the road, completed in 1970 around downtown Durham, was designated Interstate 40.[citation needed] The road was later extended west to Erwin Road and southward to where it now meets the current I-40, but the decision was made for I-40 to bypass Durham.[18]

In 1971, the North Carolina State Highway Commission approved a plan to extend I-40 from Research Triangle Park to Interstate 95, a distance of 41 miles, at a cost of $75 million. Most of the highway would be four lanes, though six lanes were likely near Raleigh, where I-40 would extend the Beltline. Several routes were being considered, but at the time, the most likely route would have ended north of Smithfield.[19]

For 15 years, Orange County opposed I-40. The county dropped its lawsuit in 1983.[20] By 1985, the $103 million 22-mile (35 km) project, connecting Research Triangle Park with I-85, was under way.[21] The section between U.S. 15-501 and New Hope Church Road opened in September 1988.[22] Late in 1988, the final 4.2 miles (6.8 km) of I-40 between I-85 and Raleigh opened.[20]

Barstow, Calif. distance sign, as seen from I-40 in Wilmington, NC.

Also in 1988, Gov. James G. Martin announced federal approval of $114.1 million for I-40 to be relocated around Winston-Salem.[22]

By the end of 1988, widening an existing section of I-85, by this time also designated as I-40, to six lanes from Greensboro to Burlington was being considered.[23][24] This was later changed to eight lanes.[25]

Late in 1988, the final 4.2 miles (6.8 km) of I-40 between I-85 and Raleigh opened.[20] The plan was later changed to eight lanes. The $175 million project began in 1989. With the opening of a 2.3-mile (3.7 km) section in Alamance County on November 23, 1994, 21 miles (34 km) of I-85/I-40 were eight lanes. An additional 14 miles (23 km) were to be ready by 1996, giving the interstate eight lanes all the way to where I-40 turned southward at Hillsborough.[26]

The last portion of I-40 to be completed, between Raleigh and Wilmington, was opened on June 29, 1990, by Governor Martin. Much of Martin's election campaign in the mid-1980s was hinged on opening this section for the sake of improving access to the North Carolina State Port at Wilmington.

A standard distance sign near the start of the westbound section of I-40 in Wilmington indicates the distance to Barstow, California, as 2,554 miles (4,110 km).

Original Triangle Routing[edit]

Originally, I-40 carried a very different route through the Triangle. When the NCDOT planned to extend I-40 to Raleigh, they planned to route it through Durham on the current NC-147. It continued on its current alignment to the Wade Avenue intersection, but continued onto Wade Avenue freeway and ended at US 1. However, a series of problems in building the freeway through downtown Durham and around the Duke University campus caused the state to reroute I-40 through rural Orange County and southern Durham. The partially completed route through Durham was renumbered NC-147 and eventually completed in the mid 1990s. In Cary, I-40 was rerouted to its current alignment in the mid 1980s, leaving the current Wade Avenue "stub".

Rockslides in the Pigeon River Gorge[edit]

The first section of I-40 in North Carolina is the section that travels through the Pigeon River Gorge in Haywood County. Known locally as simply "The Gorge", this part of I-40 cuts a path from the Tennessee state line to Waynesville. This section of the interstate is fairly curvy and tends to become a bit narrow in some places when compared to other portions of the highway. Because much of the road was cut through mountainside, concrete retaining walls have been built on both sides of the road and in the median, cutting down on the width of the breakdown lanes. Coupled with speeding vehicles, the extremely thick fog that tends to plague the area, and little room to maneuver in case of accident, this area has become notorious for its severe and many times fatal accidents. It is reported that a person is 20 times as likely to die on I-40 in Haywood County than they would be to win the Powerball lottery, which equals to be twice the average of any other Interstate Highway in North Carolina.[27]

Even some minor accidents have been known to tie up traffic in this area, because there is little room to move accidents off or to the side of the road with the terrain. Speeding semi trucks have been a problem in the gorge and have subsequently led to many accidents. In 2002 and 2003, two state troopers were killed in two separate accidents by speeding trucks that drifted off the road and hit their police car conducting a traffic stop. This led the North Carolina Highway Patrol to crack down on speeding tractor trailers and speeders in general through the area.

This portion of the highway is also notorious for rockslides and rocks falling onto the highway. The main cause is an engineering flaw, in that sections of the highway have been built on the north side of the Pigeon River, where the rock strata foliate towards the highway.

In 1985, a severe rockslide buried the westbound entrance to one of two tunnels that carry the highway through the gorge. Repair of the slide area and the tunnel required shifting westbound traffic to the eastbound tunnel, while eastbound traffic was diverted onto a temporary viaduct around the tunnels.

In July 1997, a rockslide near the Tennessee state line closed the road for nearly six months.[28]

On October 25, 2009, a major rockslide, including boulders described as the size of houses, blocked the highway completely at mile marker 2.6. The section reopened with westbound traffic restricted to one lane on April 25, 2010.[29] Trucks wider than 12 feet (3.7 m) are still prohibited through the slide area, and must still use the I-26 and I-81 detour.[30]

On January 31, 2012 a rockslide occurred early morning near mile marker 451 in Tennessee, approximately 1 mile from the border. All westbound traffic was closed down and from exit 20 (US 276), except for local traffic. The official detour for westbound traffic is to use I-240/I-26 and I-81. It was estimated to take two weeks to clear and stabilize the area; eastbound traffic from Tennessee is unaffected.[31][32][33]

On February 3, 2012, another rockslide blocked the westbound lanes (only) at mile marker 7. These lanes had already been closed because of a rockslide a short distance west in Tennessee.[34][35] On February 5, westbound traffic was reopened along the route, with one lane open at the rockslide location on the Tennessee side.[36]

Greensboro I-40 relocation[edit]

Map showing changes made to I-40's routing between 2004 and 2008

In February 2008, Interstate 40 was rerouted onto the new Greensboro Urban Loop. The former path of I-40 became Business Loop I-40.[citation needed]

NCDOT received many complaints by local residents and motorists on the confusion between mainline Interstate 40 and Business 40, which used a shield differing only in color from the mainline I-40. Greensboro residents also had concerns with the resulting increased traffic. On September 12, 2008, seven months after the initial switch, NCDOT officials got permission from the FHWA to restore Interstate 40 back to its original route through the city, decommission Business Interstate 40, and leave I-73 and I-85 as the only interstates signed along the loop with US 421. Exit numbers on the I-40 part of the Loop that ran with I-73 will be replaced with I-73 exit numbers from the I-85/US 220 southern interchange around the loop to the western I-40 interchange. US 421 was officially rerouted to replace most of I-40 around Greensboro.[37]

Work on re-signing the Loop and the former Business 40 began on May 8, 2009, with the exception of the eastern I-40/85 interchange, where signs were changed in the fall of 2008.[37][38] The re-signing project was completed on July 1, 2009.[39]

The current alignment of I-40 is four miles (6 km) shorter than the 2008 Urban Loop routing,[12] and is a quicker route for any vehicle consistently traveling at the posted speed limits.


In Statesville, the I-40/I-77 interchange (exit 152) is currently being upgraded. The upgrade is planned in three phases: reconstruction of nearby intersections on both interstates, reconstruction and widening of I-40/I-77 interchange, and construction of fly-overs at interchange. The estimated cost for the entire project is $251 million with construction to begin in March 2012. It will replace the current interchange, which was built in the late 1960s.[40][41][42]

A widening project along Interstate 40 is in development stage, between mile markers 259 and 279, in Orange and Durham counties. The estimated cost is $18 million, with date of construction to begin February 2019. However, it is currently flagged by NCDOT as "Subject to Reprioritization."[43]

A widening project along Interstate 40 is in development stage, between mile markers 301 and 312, in Wake and Johnston counties. The estimated costs have yet to be determined. Property acquisition is to start late 2013 thru 2015.[44]

A project on the lower segments of the Beltline in Raleigh is aimed at replacing the old asphalt on I 40 and I 440 between the I 440 US 64 US 264 interchange south along I 440 to the I 40 interchange and along I 40 to the US 1/ US 64/ I 440 interchange. The project is named Fortify. It is currently going on along the I 440 segment.[when?]

Exit list[edit]

HaywoodState line0.00.0 I‑40 west – Knoxville
 6.710.87Cold Springs Creek Road – Harmon Den
 14.823.815Fines Creek Road
Cove Creek20.533.020 US 276 south – Waynesville, Maggie Valley
 24.238.924 NC 209 – Lake Junaluska, Hot Springs
 27.343.927 US 19 / US 23 / US 74 west – Clyde, WaynesvilleWest end of US 74 overlap
Canton31.250.231 NC 215 – Canton
33.253.433Newfound Road – Canton
Buncombe 37.460.237Wiggins Road – Candler, East Canton
Asheville44.371.344 US 19 / US 23 / US 74A east – West Asheville, Enka, Candler
A: I‑26 / US 74 east – Hendersonville, Spartanburg
B: I‑26 west / I‑240 east – Asheville, Johnson City
Signed as exits 46A (east) and 46B (west); east end of US 74 overlap
No westbound exit 46B; left exits on both directions
46.775.247 NC 191 – West AshevilleTo Farmers Market
50.280.850 US 25 – South Asheville, Biltmore HouseSigned as exits 50A (south) and 50B (north) westbound
51.382.651 US 25A – Asheville
A: US 74A east / Blue Ridge Parkway – Bat Cave
B: I‑240 / US 74A west – East Asheville
Signed as exits 53A (east) and 53B (west)
55.188.755 To US 70 – East AshevilleTo VA Hospital
 58.894.659Patton Cove Road – Swannanoa
Black Mountain63.8102.764 NC 9 – Black Mountain, Montreat
64.8104.365 US 70 west – Black MountainWest end of US 70 overlap; westbound exit and eastbound entrance
 65.7105.766Dunsmore Avenue – Ridgecrest
McDowellOld Fort71.4114.972 US 70 east – Old FortEast end of US 70 overlap; eastbound exit and westbound entrance
72.4116.573Catawaba Avenue – Old Fort
74.8120.475Parker Padgett Road
Marion81.2130.781Sugar Hill Road – Marion
83.4134.283Ashworth Road
84.6136.285 US 221 – Marion, Rutherfordton
86.3138.986 NC 226 – Marion, Shelby
 89.8144.590Harmony Grove Road – Nebo, Lake James
Burke 94.1151.494Dysartsville Road
 95.8154.296Kathy Road
Glen Alpine97.5156.998Causby Road – Glen Alpine
99.5160.1100Jamestown Road / Dixie Boulevard – Glen Alpine
Morganton102.9165.6103 US 64 – Morganton, Rutherfordton
104.1167.5104Enola Road
105.1169.1105 NC 18 – Morganton, Shelby
 106.2170.9106Bethel Road
 107.4172.8107 NC 114 – Drexel
Valdese110.7178.2111Abees Grove Church Road / Milestone Avenue – Valdese
111.4179.3112Mineral Springs Mountain Road – Valdese
Rutherford College112.3180.7113Rutherford College Road / Malcom Boulevard – Connelly Springs, Rutherford College
Icard116.2187.0116Old NC 10 – Icard
Hildebran117.9189.7118Old NC 10
118.8191.2119Henry River Road / Center Street – Henry River, HildebranSigned as exits 119A (Henry River) and 119B (Hildebran) eastbound
CatawbaLong View120.6194.112133rd Street – Long View
A: US 321 south to NC 127 – Lincolnton, Gastonia
B: US 321 north to US 70 / NC 127 – Hickory, Lenoir, Boone
Signed as exits 123A (south) and 123B (north)
To Appalachian State University and Hickory Regional Airport
125.1201.3125Lenoir Rhyne Boulevard – HickoryTo Lenoir-Rhyne University
126.2203.1126 To US 70 – Hickory, Newton
Conover128.1206.2128Fairgrove Church RoadTo Hickory Motor Speedway
130.2209.5130Old US 70
131.6211.8132 NC 16 – Newton, Conover, Taylorsville
132.6213.4133Rock Barn Road
Claremont134.3216.1135Oxford Street – Claremont
Catawba138.1222.3138 NC 10 west (Oxford School Road) – Catawba
Iredell 140.4226.0141Sharon School Road
 144.0231.7144Old Mountain Road – West Iredell
 145.4234.0146Stamey Farm Road
Statesville147.7237.7148 US 64 / NC 90 – West Statesville, Taylorsville
149.5240.6150 NC 115 – Downtown Statesville, North Wilkesboro
151.2243.3151 US 21 – East Statesville, Harmony
A: I‑77 south – Charlotte
B: I‑77 north – Elkin
Signed as exits 152A (south) and 152B (north)
152.9246.1153 US 64 – StatesvillePermanently closed as of October 1, 2012; was an eastbound exit and westbound entrance[45][46]
153.7247.4154 US 64 (Old Mocksville Road)
 161.8260.4162 US 64
DavieMocksville167.8270.0168 US 64 – Mocksville
169.5272.8170 US 601 – Mocksville, Yadkinville
 173.5279.2174Farmington Road
 179.8289.4180 NC 801 – Bermuda Run, Tanglewood
ForsythClemmons182.1293.1182Harper Road – Tanglewood, Bermuda Run
183.5295.3184Lewisville–Clemmons Road – Lewisville, Clemmons
Winston-Salem187.7302.1188 I‑40 Bus. east / US 421 – Downtown Winston-Salem, Yadkinville, WilkesboroNo access from I-40 east to US 421 south
188.6303.5189 US 158 (Stratford Road)
189.3304.6190Hanes Mall BoulevardWestbound exit and eastbound entrance
191.3307.9192 NC 150 (Peters Creek Parkway) – Downtown Winston-Salem
192.5309.8193CSilas Creek Parkway, South Main StreetWestbound exit and eastbound entrance
A: US 52 / NC 8 south – Lexington
B: US 52 / US 311 / NC 8 north – Mount Airy
North end of US 311 overlap
Signed as exits 193A (south) and 193B (north)
194.3312.7195 NC 109 / Clemmonsville Road – Thomasville
195.9315.3196 I‑74 east / US 311 south – High PointSouth end of US 311 overlap
Kernersville200.7323.0201Union Cross Road
203.5327.5203 NC 66 / Regional Road – Kernersville, High Point
Guilford 206.4332.2206 I‑40 Bus. north / US 421 – Kernersville, Downtown Winston-SalemNorth end of US 421 overlap; westbound exit and eastbound entrance
Greensboro207.4333.8208Sandy Ridge Road
209.7337.5210 NC 68 – High Point, Piedmont Triad International Airport
210.7339.1211Gallimore Dairy Road
212.1341.3212 I‑73 / US 421 south / To Bryan Boulevard – AsheboroEast end of US 421 overlap; signed as exits 212A (Bryan Boulevard) and 212B (I-73/US 421)
213.0342.8213Guilford College Road
213.8344.1214Wendover AvenueSigned as exits 214A (east) and 214B (west) eastbound
215.3346.5216Patterson StreetEastbound exit and westbound entrance
216.8348.9217High Point Road, Koury Boulevard
218.2351.2218 US 220 south to I‑85 Bus. south / Freeman Mill Road – AsheboroWest end of US 220 overlap; signed as exits 218A (US 220) and 218B (Freeman Mill Road)
219.0352.4219 I‑85 Bus. south / US 29 south / US 70 west – CharlotteSouth end of US 29/I-85 Bus. and west end of US 70 overlap
219.3352.9220Randleman Road
219.9353.9221South Elm-Eugene Street – Downtown Greensboro
221.0355.7222Martin Luther King Jr. Drive
221.1355.8223 US 29 north / US 70 east / US 220 north – ReidsvilleNorth end of US 29//US 220 and east end of US 70 overlap; northbound exit and southbound entrance
223.3359.4224 To US 29 north / US 220 north / East Lee StreetTo Bennett College, UNC Greensboro, A&T University and Greensboro College
225.7363.2226McConnell Road
226.5364.5227 I‑85 south to US 70 – CharlotteSouth end of I-85 and north end of I-85 Bus. overlap; hidden north I-785 and west I-840
I-40 overlaps with Interstate 85 (exits 131 to 163)
OrangeHillsborough258.3415.7259 I‑85 north – DurhamNorth end of I-85 overlap
260.8419.7261Old NC Highway 86 – Hillsborough
262.9423.1263New Hope Church Road
265.8427.8266 NC 86 – Chapel Hill, Hillsborough
DurhamChapel Hill269.9434.4270
A: US 15 / US 501 south – Chapel Hill
B: US 15 / US 501 north – Durham
Signed as exits 270A (south) and 270B (north)
272.7438.9273 NC 54 – Chapel Hill, DurhamSigned as exits 273A (west) and 273B (east) westbound
Durham274.2441.3274 NC 751 – Jordan Lake
275.6443.5276Fayetteville Road  – Southpoint, North Carolina Central University
277.8447.1278 NC 55 to NC 54 – Apex
No image wide.svg
A: NC 147 south (Triangle Expressway) – Morrisville
B: NC 147 north (Durham Freeway) – Downtown Durham
Signed as exits 279A (Toll NC 147 South) and 279B (NC 147 North)
 280.1450.8280Davis Drive
Durham280.8451.9281Miami Boulevard
281.4452.9282Page Road
282.3454.3283 I‑540 east / NC 540 west to US 1 to US 70  – North RaleighSigned westbound as exits 283A (East I-540) and 283B (West NC 540)
WakeMorrisville283.5456.2284Airport Boulevard – RDU International AirportSigned eastbound as exits 284A (west) and 284B (east)
Cary284.7458.2285Aviation Parkway  – Morrisville, RDU International Airport
287.0461.9287Harrison Avenue – Cary
Raleigh288.6464.5289 To I‑440 / US 1 north / Wade Avenue – Downtown RaleighTo PNC Arena, Carter–Finley Stadium, State Fairgrounds, NCSU Veterinary College, and NC Museum of Art
290.5467.5290 NC 54 – Cary
291.4469.0291Cary Towne Boulevard – Cary
A: US 1 south / US 64 west – Cary, Asheboro
B: I‑440 east / US 1 north – Raleigh, Wake Forest
West end of US 64 overlap; signed as exits 293A (south/west) and 293B (north/east)
295.0474.8295Gorman Street
297.1478.1297Lake Wheeler Road
A: US 70 east / US 401 south / NC 50 east (S. Saunders Street South) – Garner
B: US 70 west / US 401 north / NC 50 west – Downtown Raleigh
Signed as exits 298A (east/south) and 298B (west/north)
298.8480.9299Hammond Road, Person Street
300.3483.3300Rock Quarry Road
301.1484.6301 I‑440 west / US 64 east – KnightdaleEast end of US 64 overlap; Eastbound exit is a left exit
 303.5488.4303Jones Sausage Road
US 70 west / US 70 Bus. east – Garner, Clayton
West end of US 70 overlap; signed as exits 306A (west) and 306B (east) westbound
309.6498.3309 US 70 east – Smithfield, GoldsboroEast end of US 70 overlap
Johnston 311.8501.8312 NC 42 – Clayton, Fuquay-Varina
 318.6512.7319 NC 210 – Smithfield, Angier
Benson325.4523.7325 NC 242 south to US 301 – Benson
A: I‑95 south – Benson, Fayetteville
B: I‑95 north – Rocky Mount, Smithfield
Signed as exits 328A (south) and 328B (north)
 333.6536.9334 NC 96 – Meadow
SampsonNewton Grove341.0548.8341 NC 50 / NC 55 to US 13 – Newton Grove
343.3552.5343 US 701 – Clinton, Newton Grove
 348.0560.1348Suttontown Road
 355.4572.0355 NC 403 – Faison
NC 24 west / NC 24 Bus. east to NC 50 – Warsaw, Clinton
West end of NC 24 overlap
369.6594.8369 US 117 – Warsaw
 372.9600.1373 NC 24 east / NC 903 – Magnolia, Kenansville, BeulavilleEast end of NC 24 overlap
Rose Hill380.0611.6380Charity Road – Rose Hill
 384.1618.1384 NC 11 – Wallace, Greenevers
 385.4620.2385 NC 41 – Wallace, Beulaville
Pender 390.2628.0390 US 117 – Wallace
Burgaw398.5641.3398 NC 53 – Burgaw, Jacksonville
Rocky Point408.1656.8408 NC 210 – Rocky PointTo Moores Creek National Battlefield
New HanoverCastle Hayne414.5667.1414Holly Shelter Road – Castle Hayne
A: I‑140 west / US 17 south – Shallotte, Myrtle Beach
B: US 17 north – Topsail Island, New Bern, Jacksonville
Signed as exits 416A (south) and 416B (north)
Wilmington419.9675.8420 US 117 / NC 132 north / Gordon Road – Castle HayneSigned as exits 420A (Gordon Road) and 420B (US 117/NC 132) westbound
423.6681.7 US 117 / NC 132 south – State Port, Carolina BeachContinuation as US 117/NC 132
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

Auxiliary routes in North Carolina[edit]

Business Loop 40.svgInterstate 40 BusinessWinston-SalemBusiness loopFreeway grade throughout
I-140.svgInterstate 140WilmingtonSpurPartially constructed
I-240.svgInterstate 240AshevilleBusiness loop
I-440.svgInterstate 440RaleighBeltway
I-540.svgInterstate 540RaleighSpur/BeltwayDesignated along the Northern Wake Freeway
I-840.svgInterstate 840GreensboroBeltwayPartially completed northern bypass, under construction

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Route Log — Main Routes of the Eisenhower National System Of Interstate and Defense Highways — Table 1". October 31, 2002. Retrieved May 20, 2012. 
  2. ^ a b North Carolina Department of Transportation (2009). Haywood County North Carolina (Map). Cartography by North Carolina Public Works Commission (2009 ed.).
  3. ^ North Carolina Department of Transportation. Buncombe County (Map). Cartography by North Carolina Department of Transportation. Retrieved April 2014.
  4. ^ North Carolina Department of Transportation. "[]". McDowell County (Map). Cartography by North Carolina Department of Transportation.
  5. ^ North Carolina Department of Transportation. Catawba County (Map). Cartography by North Carolina Department of Transportation. Retrieved February 2014.
  6. ^ North Carolina Department of Transportation. Forsyth County (Map). Cartography by North Carolina Department of Transportation. Retrieved April 2014.
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Google Inc. "Interstate 40 in North Carolina". Google Maps (Map). Cartography by Google, Inc.,-80.2291883,15z?hl=en. Retrieved February 27, 2014.
  8. ^ a b c d e f North Carolina Department of Transportation (2013). State Transportation Map (Map). Cartography by North Carolina State Tax Commission (2013–14 ed.).
  9. ^ North Carolina Department of Transportation (2011). Greensboro North Carolina (Map). Cartography by North Carolina Public Works Commission (2011 ed.).
  10. ^ Scene of I-40 triple fatal wreck worries drivers ::
  11. ^ One dead in I-40 wreck, lanes reopened |
  12. ^ a b c "Which Way Do We Go?" Winston-Salem Journal. Sunday, February 1, 2009 issue. Page 1 Section A.
  13. ^ Rest Areas | NCDOT Mobile
  14. ^ North Carolina Department of Transportation (2011). 2011–2012 North Carolina State Transportation map (Map). Cartography by North Carolina Public Works Commission (2011–2012 ed.).
  15. ^ "NCDOT: NC Blue Star Memorial Marker Locations". Retrieved November 24, 2011. 
  16. ^ a b c d e "North Carolina Memorial Highways and other Named Facilities" (PDF). North Carolina Department of Transportation. July 15, 2004. Retrieved November 24, 2013. 
  17. ^ "ABC Local "What is Tobacco Road?". Retrieved November 24, 2011. 
  18. ^ a b Bloom, Jonathan (July 26, 1998). "30-year, 12-mile project completed". The Herald-Sun (Durham, NC). p. A1. 
  19. ^ "SHC Approves I-40 Link in Wake County," Concord Tribune (Associated Press), July 20, 1971.
  20. ^ a b c "I-40 Puts Village in Fast Lane; Triangle Approaches". The Charlotte Observer (Charlotte, NC). Associated Press. October 31, 1988. p. 1D. 
  21. ^ Leland, Elizabeth (July 16, 1985). "Growing Pains: I-40 Construction Rapidly Transforming Rural Areas into World of Sleek High Rises". The Charlotte Observer (Charlotte, NC). p. 1A. 
  22. ^ a b "U.S. Approves Money for I-40 Bypass". The Charlotte Observer (Charlotte, NC). October 6, 1988. p. 4B. 
  23. ^ "I-85 Traffic Flow May Be Smoother". The Charlotte Observer (Charlotte, NC). Associated Press. December 16, 1988. p. 5B. 
  24. ^ "N.C. Interstate Widenings Make Road Ahead Rocky". The Charlotte Observer (Charlotte, NC). March 14, 1990. p. 2C. 
  25. ^ "North Carolina — Wider I-85 Recommended". The Charlotte Observer (Charlotte, NC). January 27, 1988. p. 2B. 
  26. ^ Hall, David A. (November 23, 1994). "Interstate 40/85 Freeway Isn't Free of Construction". Greensboro News & Record (Greensboro, NC). p. A1. 
  27. ^ "The Smoky Mountain News". The Smoky Mountain News. Retrieved May 20, 2012. 
  28. ^
  29. ^ Hickman, Hayes. "Section of I-40 closed since Oct. rockslide reopens » Knoxville News Sentinel". Retrieved September 19, 2011. 
  30. ^ "Travel Information". NCDOT. Retrieved September 19, 2011. 
  31. ^ Staff (January 31, 2012). "Interstate 40 West Closed at Exit 20 in North Carolina Near Tennessee Border Due to Rockslide in Tennessee". Raleigh, NC: North Carolina Department of Transportation. Retrieved February 4, 2012. 
  32. ^ Warren, Sabian (February 2, 2012). "Rock slide shuts I-40 lanes west of Asheville". Asheville Citizen-Times (Asheville, NC). Retrieved February 4, 2012. 
  33. ^ Vaughn, Casey (January 31, 2012). "TDOT: I-40 should reopen by Monday following rockslide". Greenville, SC: FOX Carolina 21. Retrieved February 4, 2012. 
  34. ^ Burns, Matthew (February 3, 2012). "Rock slide occurs on closed section of I-40". Raleigh, NC: WRAL. Retrieved February 4, 2012. 
  35. ^ Staff (February 4, 2012). "Crews Make Progress Cleaning Up Rockslide on I-40 West in North Carolina". Raleigh, NC: North Carolina Department of Transportation. Retrieved February 4, 2012. 
  36. ^ Morrison, Clarke (February 5, 2012). "Officials: I-40 lanes back open". Asheville Citizen-Times (Asheville, NC). Retrieved February 5, 2012. 
  37. ^ a b "NCDOT Press Release Dated 9/12/08". September 12, 2008. Retrieved May 20, 2012. 
  38. ^ "Greensboro Urban Loop on Flickr". Retrieved May 20, 2012. 
  39. ^ News 14 Carolina. "Signing Changes Coming to I-40". Report aired May 11, 2009.[dead link]
  40. ^ "NCDOT: Project I-3819". Retrieved November 1, 2011. 
  41. ^ "DOT Report: Interchange At I-40, I-77 To Cost $250M". Retrieved November 1, 2011. 
  42. ^ "The Construction of I-40/I-77 Interchange". Retrieved November 1, 2011. [dead link]
  43. ^ "NCDOT: Project I-3306". Retrieved November 24, 2011. 
  44. ^ "NCDOT: I-40 Widening — Southeast Raleigh to Clayton Project". Retrieved November 24, 2011. 
  45. ^ Vieser, Dave (September 24, 2012). "I-40 exit will close as part of interchange improvements". Charlotte Observer (Charlotte, NC). Retrieved October 1, 2012. [dead link]
  46. ^ Spencer, Preston (September 19, 2012). "Part of Greenway Trail to close until 2015; Exit 153 eliminated". Statesville, NC: Statesville Record & Landmark. Retrieved October 1, 2012. [dead link]

External links[edit]

Route map: Google / Bing

Interstate 40
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