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Connecticut 15 Northbound (Wilbur Cross Highway)

From Wethersfield until its terminus in East Hartford, Route 15 runs along the Wilbur Cross Highway (5.59 miles). It crosses the Connecticut River on the Charter Oak Bridge between Hartford and East Hartford and terminates at an interchange with I-84 in East Hartford. This highway serves as a bypass for motorists traveling from Interstate 91 north to Interstate 84 east. Photos taken by John Boren.

Connecticut 15 North
The Berlin Turnpike exits from U.S. 5/Connecticut 15 and continues on as Connecticut 314 towards Maple Avenue. U.S. 5/Connecticut 15 jogs to the northeast to eventually meet up with Interstate 91, which it has been paralleling since Meriden. Photo taken 06/01/09.
Close-up of the gore point where the Berlin Turnpike and U.S. 5/Connecticut 15 part ways. Photo taken 06/01/09.
This old bridge with a low 13'7" clearance dates to the 1940's when the highway was built. Photo taken 06/01/09.
The speed limit for the entire duration of the Wilbur Cross Highway is 55 mph. Photo taken 06/01/09.
The next unmarked exit for Connecticut 99 (Silas Deane Highway) leads to either the State Labor Department or to branch of the Motor Vehicle Department. Because of the state capital of Hartford's small size at 15 square miles, there a several state offices that are located outside of it. Another example of this is the Connecticut Department of Transportation being located on the Berlin Turnpike in Newington. Photos taken 06/01/09.
One of the fairly new VMS (Variable Messaging System) displays that are located on major highways throughout the state. During peak travel hours, this particular sign tends to notify motorists of delays on Interstate 91, which the Wilbur Cross Highway meets in one mile.

Unmarked Exit 85 for Connecticut 99 (Silas Deane Highway) in Wethersfield. Photo taken 06/01/09.
The highway heads more north as it crosses into the city of Hartford. The exits begin to get numbered again, beginning with exit 86 for Interstate 91 south to New Haven and New York City. The overhead sign is incorrect as it implies that Interstate 91 and Connecticut 15 are currently cosigned; the correct reading should be "North U.S. 5/Connecticut 15 TO Interstate 91". Photo taken 06/01/09.

Exit 87 serves interests to Brainard Airport, a regional airport, Brainard Road and Airport Road. The overpasses ahead carry the north and southbound travel lanes for Interstate 91. Photo taken 06/01/09.
Airport Road crosses overhead. Due to its narrow span, there are only three total lanes passing under it; two northbound and one southbound. Motorists are advised to stay in the left lanes for the Charter Oak Bridge, which carries the Wilbur Cross Highway over the Connecticut River. At this point, Interstate 91 is to the left of U.S. 5/Connecticut 15 and running parallel to it. Photo taken 06/01/09.
The left two lanes continue on over the Charter Oak Bridge to East Hartford and Boston, while the right two exit only lanes serve Interstate 91 north and Interstate 84 west. The Wilbur Cross Highway approaches Connecticut 2 almost immediately after crossing the Connecticut River, and ends at Interstate 84. Photos taken 06/01/09.
The road goes upward as it approaches the Charter Oak Bridge to cross the Connecticut River. At exit 90, U.S. 5/Connecticut 15 end their long cosigning as U.S. 5 transitions onto Main Street in East Hartford. This exit also serves Connecticut 2 to Norwich, and East River Drive. Photo taken 06/01/09.
The next two exits, 90 and 91, serve East Hartford. Exit 90 gets its own exit only lane as U.S. 5/Connecticut 15 cross over Connecticut 2. Photos taken 06/01/09.

The exit for Silver Lane is the last exit for the Connecticut 15 (Wilbur Cross Highway). Silver Lane is the major east-west arterial in East Hartford that is south of Interstate 84. After the merge onto Interstate 84, motorists with at least two passengers may use the left exit to get onto the HOV lane. There should be a "TO" in between the Connecticut 15 and Interstate 84 shields. Photo taken 06/01/09.
Instead of a Connecticut 15 reassurance shield, we now see a "TO East Interstate 84/384" as the road travels over Silver Lane. There are no more indications that this highway is Connecticut 15. Photo taken 06/01/09.
Overhead from front to back is the Interstate 84 westbound HOV lane, Interstate 84 westbound mainline, and the Interstate 84 eastbound HOV lane. Photo taken 06/01/09.
The option to use the HOV lane comes after Connecticut 15 merges with mainline Interstate 84. Connecticut 15 loops back underneath the Interstate 84 eastbound and westbound HOV lanes in order to merge with Interstate 84 east. Photo Taken 06/01/09.
Connecticut 15 (Wilbur Cross Highway) ends at Interstate 84 with little fanfare, as it is uncommon for the ends of highways/freeways to be signed in Connecticut.The two travel lanes join with the three existing westbound lanes from Interstate 84 to make it five lanes wide until the western terminus of Interstate 384. The ramp on the left coming down to ground level is the Interstate 84 eastbound HOV lane, and motorists will need to exit left onto it if they have at least two passengers and choose to use it. From here, west until the Massachusetts state line, Interstate 84 is considered to be the continuation of the Wilbur Cross Highway, but it is not signed as such. Photo Taken 06/01/09.

Page Updated June 1, 2009.