Started the final day of the trip in Cayce, South Carolina. Began by poking around downtown Columbia briefly before heading west to Saluda, SC and Athens, GA. Ended up back in Atlanta and took Interstate 20 west to Birmingham and then south on I-65.

Counter-intuitive shield assembly posted for South Carolina 12 along U.S. 21-176-321 (Huger Street) northbound in Columbia.

South Carolina 12 follows a one-way street couplet of Hampton Street (east) and Taylor Street (west) from Jarvis Klapman Boulevard to Park Street in downtown.

U.S. 21-176-321 turn southward onto Huger Street from Elmwood Avenue.

While the only Business Spur I-126 sign disappeared a few years ago, the remainder of the junction with Interstate 126 remains virtually unchanged from 2004.

The west end of Interstate 126

Interstate 126 west defaults onto Interstate 26 west ahead of the junction with Interstate 20 (Exit 107). The freeway mainline merges onto I-26 from the left. Motorists taking the I-20 ramp simply merge onto I-26 from the right ahead of the full-cloverleaf interchange at Exit 107. U.S. 76 is the only US Route in the Columbia area to follow a freeway. It joins Interstate 126 from Elmwood Avenue and continues on I-26 west to Exit 101A.

U.S. 378 follows Travis Avenue into Saluda and turns south on Jennings Street and west on Church Street to this intersection with U.S. 178, South Carolina 39, and South Carolina 121 (Main Street). Saluda is the home town of professional wrestling’s Paul “The Big Show” Wight.

U.S. 221 south joins U.S. 378 west for a brief overlap along East Gold Street in McCormick, South Carolina. Pictured here is the split where U.S. 221 south joins South Carolina 28 on Mine Street.

Crossing the Savannah River along U.S. 378 into Lincoln County, Georgia.

A $14.2-million bridge replacement project is underway that will replace the 1938-opened bridge with a new structure to the south. When completed, U.S. 378 will travel a new 1,680 foot bridge with 12′ travel lanes, 10′ shoulders. New approaches are to be constructed as well.

U.S. 378 ends at U.S. 78 & Georgia 10-17 outside of Washington in Wilkes County.

The U.S. 378 end point lies directly across from the U.S. 78 business loop through the county seat. A connector road provides access to U.S. 78 east to Thomson ahead of the actual signalized end. See Dale Sanderson’s End of US Highway 378 page for additional photos of the terminus.

The Washington Bypass continues north with Georgia 17; U.S. 78 & Georgia 10 turn west on a two-lane alignment north of the business loop of Lexington Avenue.

Georgia 10 Loop west

While the Athens Perimeter Highway (Georgia 10 Loop) carries U.S. 29, U.S. 78, U.S. 129, U.S. 441 and a myriad of state route counterparts along its alignment, all overlaps are ignored on reassurance shields and instead a simple Georgia 10 Loop Inner or Outer shield assembly is posted instead. There are however, small guide signs that follow some of the on-ramps directing motorists to the departure points of the U.S. highways and Georgia 316’s westbound beginning.

Georgia 316 west after Georgia 211

Georgia 316 constitutes a 39.08 mile expressway type route between the Athens Perimeter Highway (Georgia 10 Loop) and Interstate 85 in Gwinnett County. The route undulates from signalized intersections through seemingly rural swaths with a 65 mph speed limit. The number of signalized intersections prevents a consistent pace between Athens and metro Atlanta and only the westernmost five miles of the route comprises a freeway. Talks have centered around upgrading Georgia 316 for years and recently those have focused on upgrading the highway to limited access standards by implementing tolls. It was reported in 2004 that tolls on such a route may be a high as $4.17-per trip, and in today’s standards that may even be a low estimate. Tolls remain one of the controversial aspects of the project, and there is even a Facebook page dedicated to the upgrade of Georgia 316 without the use of tolls.

Collins Hill Road intersects Georgia 316 west at the final signalized intersection along University Parkway. From this point westward, Georgia 316 upgrades to nearly freeway standards with the exception of turn-offs for University Center Lane and Walter Boulevard.

Georgia 316 west approaching I-85 and its west end.

What was a simple wye interchange between Georgia 316 and Interstate 85 at Exit 103 was upgraded as part of a $147-mllion project and completed in October 20, 2007. Added were flyover ramps connecting Georgia 316 west with Interstate 85 south on the right-hand side and adjacent Pleasant Hill Road. The upgrade also provides direct HOV-lane connections between the two freeways.

Approaching former Georgia 280 along Interstate 285 south (inner) at Atlanta.

Georgia 260 was truncated from its terminus at U.S. 278 & Georgia 12 (Covington Highway) east of Interstate 285 to Exit 61B of Interstate 20.

55 mile per hour speed limits on I-20 in eastern Alabama

Speed limits along Interstate 20 in eastern Alabama were lowered on March 19, 2010 from 70 to 55 mph following the death of woman killed by a stone kicked up from a vehicle traveling over a pothole. The speed restriction is in place through Calhoun and Cleburne Counties between Oxford and the Georgia state line. A widening project between mileposts 182 and 186 is planned and upon completion, speed limits are expected to return to 70 mph.
For what its worth, every vehicle we encountered was traveling between 65-70 mph or greater on the 32-mile stretch.

Golden Springs Road leads north from Exit 188 of Interstate 20 to the Anniston East Bypass.

The four to five lane highway first meets U.S. 78 at a one-quarter cloverleaf interchange and then transitions into an arterial without controlled access. This section of roadway opened in October 2004 between I-20 and Choccoiocco Road. Further north, construction of a new 8-mile roadway (Alabama 192) is now underway as a $29.4-million stimulus project started on October 13, 2009. Alabama 192 will link U.S. 431 at Saks to the existing Anniston East Bypass near Coleman Road. Work should be completed in 2012 or 2013.

A major widening project (from four to six lanes) is underway along Interstate 20 between Exits 158 and 147 in St. Clair County, Alabama. Work on this section of roadway is slated for completion by October 1, 2012.

Some original button copy overheads remain in service along Interstates 20 and 459 in east Birmingham and Irondale.

Construction along Interstate 65 in Shelby County extends the six-lane stretch of freeway south from Exit 247 (Shelby County 17) to Shelby County 52 (Exit 242). Future work will extend the six to eight lane freeway southward to the Shelby County Airport interchange (Exit 234).

Last, but not least, construction to modernize and improve Interstate 65 through Montgomery is still underway as part of the Progress65 project.

The 4.61-mile project rebuilds the freeway between the Alabama River and U.S. 80 expressway leading west toward Montgomery Regional Airport. Original concrete was replaced south of Interstate 65 and is currently being overlaid with asphalt to the north. Guide sign structures are also being replaced, and new assemblies, such as this one for Interstate 85 north (Exit 171) are eliminating all ground level assemblies. Work should be done next month.


  • Savannah River Bridge replacement, GDOT.
  • “I-85 & Hwy 316 Interchange Opens.”, October 20, 2007.
  • I-20 speed limit between Oxford, Georgia to be lowered following death.Mobile Press-Register, March 18, 2010.
  • Final Segment of Anniston Eastern Bypass Under, December 16, 2009.
  • “ALDOT announces lane closures associated with I-20 widening.” The Daily Home, October 23, 2009.
  • “ALDOT soon to widen I-65 to Promenade exit.” Shelby County Reporter, August 26, 2010.