Arizona Loop 101 - Inner Loop

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Arizona 101 - Inner Loop
The first exit along northbound Loop 101 after its southwestern terminus at Interstate 10 is Thomas Road. As evidenced at this exit, much of the Loop 101 freeway is six lanes (three lanes each way) with collector distributor lanes in use for exits and entrances. Photo taken 03/01/03.
Northbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 4, Indian School Road, three quarters of a mile. The opposing overhead signs along southbound are for the junction with Interstate 10. Photo taken 03/01/03.
Northbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 4, Indian School Road, one-quarter mile. Photo taken 03/01/03.
Northbound Loop 101 at Exit 4, Indian School Road. This is the same Indian School Road that intersects Arizona 51 and Interstate 17, per the grid pattern. The grid pattern of streets in metropolitan Phoenix have been attributed to reducing the need for additional freeways in already-developed areas, thus making mobility much easier than other cities with other street patterns. Photo taken 03/01/03.
The next exit along northbound is Exit 5, Camelback Road. Exits tend to be spaced approximately one per mile along Loop 101 as it arcs across northwestern Phoenix. Photo taken 03/01/03.
Northbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 5, Camelback Road, one-quarter mile. Unlike most days in Phoenix, this was a rather stormy day with threatening clouds looming on the horizon. That night it rained in areas of North Phoenix, a seldom seen occurrence even in the winter months. Photo taken 03/01/03.
Northbound Loop 101 at Exit 5, Camelback Road. Camelback Road, which parallels Indian School Road to the south and Glendale Avenue to the north, leads east to Glendale and west to Litchfield Park and Luke Air Force Base. Photo taken 03/01/03.
Northbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 7, Glendale Avenue, three-quarters of a mile. Photo taken 03/01/03.
At Exit 7, northbound Loop 101 meets Glendale Avenue, which leads east into Glendale. Photo taken 03/01/03.
Northbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 8, Northern Avenue. Northern Avenue leads east-west through Peoria, the next city north of Glendale. Photo taken 03/01/03.
The Wildlife World Zoo is accessible from Exit 8 (take Northern Avenue west past Reems Road). This picture also provides a good look at the countryside around Loop 101 in Peoria, with rolling, irrigated fields. Much of the water is imported through the Central Arizona Water Project from the Colorado River or pumped from the myriad underground aquifers in the region. Photo taken 03/01/03.
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Northbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 8, next right. Note the use of a dedicated exit-only lane for this route. Photo taken 03/01/03.
Northbound Loop 101 at Exit 8, Northern Avenue. Photo taken 03/01/03.
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Northbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 8, next right. Note the use of a dedicated exit-only lane for this route. Photo taken 03/01/03.
The next exit along northbound Loop 101 is Exit 9, Olive Road, in Peoria. Eastbound Olive Road connects to U.S. 60, which leads southeast into downtown Phoenix. Photo taken 03/01/03.
Peoria is the spring home for the San Diego Padres, who play with a variety of Major League Baseball teams in the Arizona Cactus League in small stadium venues scattered across the Valley of the Sun. Other franchises may be found in Phoenix, Mesa, Scottsdale, and other areas. The Chicago Cubs, for instance, are based in Mesa every March. This photo shows northbound Loop 101 at Exit 10, Peoria Avenue. The exit only lane is not properly signed here. Photo taken 0000.
Northbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 11, for U.S. 60 (Grand Avenue). By this point, the normally dry New River runs snug with Loop 101, its banks just west of the freeway. Photo taken 03/01/03.
West U.S. 60 is the fastest route from Phoenix to Kingman and Las Vegas, as it follows a northwesterly trajectory all the way to Wickenburg, where the route splits off U.S. 93. U.S. 93 continues northwest from Wickenburg to Kingman and Las Vegas. This is an extremely busy corridor, and assorted upgrades and widening projects are underway throughout Arizona and Las Vegas, including a new freeway bridge bypass of Hoover Dam at the Nevada-Arizona State Line. Photo taken 03/01/03.
One quarter mile ahead of Exit 11 for U.S. 60 (Grand Avenue) on Loop 101 north. The ensuing exits are for Thunderbird Road and Bell Road. Beyond Union Hills Drive, Loop 101 turns from northbound to eastbound. Photo taken 03/01/03.
Loop 101 north reaches Exit 11 for U.S. 60 (Grand Avenue). Even though this appears to be a rudimentary interchange, this is the meeting of two major roadways. Furthermore, U.S. 60 (Grand Avenue) was slowly upgraded to increase capacity, including interchange construction at several major intersections through Phoenix, Glendale, Peoria and Sun City. Photo taken 03/01/03.
The next exit along Northbound Loop 101 is Exit 12, Thunderbird Road. Photo taken 03/01/03.
Northbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 12, Thunderbird Road, next right. Thunderbird Road leads east across the northern tier of Phoenix, with a connection to Scottsdale via Cactus Road. Photo taken 03/01/03.
Dark and blurry photo of northbound Loop 101 at Exit 12, Thunderbird Road. So much for those bright, sunny, desert days! Photo taken 03/01/03.
Northbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 14, Bell Road. The next exit is Union Hills Drive (Exit 15), followed by north-south 75th Avenue (Exit 17). Photo taken 03/01/03.
Loop 101 turns from northbound to eastbound as it reaches Exit 17, 75th Avenue. Photo taken 03/01/03.
Eastbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 18, 67th Avenue. The avenues decrease numerically from west to east as they approach Central Avenue. Central Avenue is the dividing line between avenues and streets. North-south roads east of Central Avenue are streets, while those west of Central Avenue are avenues. Photo taken 03/01/03.
This was a rare overcast day in Phoenix. Since it lies within one of the driest areas of the United States, rainfall is minimal each year. However, on the night before this photo was taken, over a tenth of an inch of rain fell in the city, and the remnants of the storm remained on the following day. This is eastbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 19, 59th Avenue, three-quarters of a mile. Photo taken 03/01/03.
Loop 101 eastbound approaching Exit 20, 51st Avenue. Through this stretch of Loop 101, the freeway uses passes under most surface streets, as evidenced by this overpass. Photo taken 03/01/03.
Eastbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 22, 35th Avenue. The next exit is Junction Interstate 17, the Black Canyon Freeway (Exit 23). Photo taken 03/01/03.
Although some cities with loop routes use the nomenclature "inner" and "outer" loop, it is not used in Phoenix. This picture was taken on what would be the inner loop, along eastbound Loop 101 at Exit 22, 35th Avenue, approaching Junction Interstate 17. Photo taken 03/01/03.
Although it is mid-afternoon, the overcast weather caused many to turn on their headlights. On a normal sunny Phoenix afternoon, the sun's glare is enough to ensure cars remain visible. This picture was taken along eastbound approaching Junction Interstate 17, one and three-quarters miles. Photo taken 03/01/03.
Eastbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 23A, 27th Avenue. The next exit after that is Junction Interstate 17 (Exit 23B). Photo taken 03/01/03.
The next exit is prominently displayed on this signbridge, as Loop 101 approaches its first major interchange since its junction with U.S. 60 in Peoria. Photo taken 03/01/03.
The monumental stack interchange for Interstate 17 and Loop 101 finally comes into view after rounding a bend. This interchange provides for movements in all directions. Photo taken 03/01/03.
Although we have not passed under the massive Loop 101/Interstate 17 freeway interchange in North Phoenix, there is an advance sign for 7th Avenue, which is the next exit along eastbound. Photo taken 03/01/03.
Check out the size of this interchange as seen from the bottom level. A symmetrical stack, this interchange was completed in 2000-2001 as part of the construction of the Loop 101 freeway. Photo taken 03/01/03.
Ramps from southbound Interstate 17 and northbound Interstate 17 to eastbound Loop 101 merge together several stories above this vantage point on the high flyover ramps. Notice how the freeway has reduced to only two through lanes, with the assumption that most traffic would exit the loop freeway to take Interstate 17. Photo taken 03/01/03.
The next exit after Interstate 17 along eastbound Loop 101 is 7th Avenue. Here the freeway rises up for a sweeping view of the distant mountains before it lowers as it approaches the exit. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Eastbound Loop 101 descends to pass underneath 7th Avenue (Exit 25). Photo taken 03/25/07.
Eastbound Loop 101 at Exit 25, 7th Avenue. To keep things confusing, the next exit after 7th Avenue is none other than 7th Street. The dividing line between avenues and streets, Central Avenue, is midway between these two exits. Photo taken 03/25/07.
As promised, the next exit along eastbound Loop 101 is Exit 26, 7th Street. Nothing like having 7th Avenue followed by 7th Street. Exit numbers come in very handy in this situation, since some visitors may not realize the difference between street and avenue! Photo taken 03/25/07.
Eastbound Loop 101 at Exit 26, 7th Street. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Eastbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 28, Cave Creek Road (three-quarters of a mile). Cave Creek Road leaves the grid pattern of metropolitan Phoenix and turns northeaster toward the Carefree Highway. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Eastbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 28, Cave Creek Road (one-quarter of a mile). Cave Creek Road is where 24th Street would be on the Phoenix grid system. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Eastbound Loop 101 at Exit 28, Cave Creek Road. Photo taken 03/25/07.
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Advance signage for Exit 29, Arizona 51. The first photo was taken before construction on the interchange began - the interchange opened in May 2003. Also note the reassurance shield, which features a separate "Pima Freeway" marker beneath the shield. Photo taken 03/01/03. Second photo taken 03/25/07.
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Use Arizona 51 to travel south to the Camelback area and downtown Phoenix. The next exit after Arizona 51 is Tatum Blvd. Photo taken 03/01/03. Second photo taken 03/25/07.
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Eastbound Loop 101 at exit 29, Arizona 51 south. Note the large amount of standing water to the south (right) of the freeway. This is due to the recent rainstorms that pummeled the area. Photo taken 03/01/03. Second photo taken 03/25/07.
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Eastbound Loop 101 approaching Tatum Boulevard (Exit 31). Photos taken 03/25/07.
Eastbound Loop 101 approaching Tatum Boulevard (Exit 31), one-quarter mile. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Eastbound Loop 101 at Tatum Boulevard (Exit 31). Tatum Boulevard is a major north-south city street that leads to Paradise Valley Mall at the intersection with Cactus Road (within in the city of Phoenix) and the city of Paradise Valley immediately south of the mall at Shea Boulevard. Use Tatum Blvd to reach Desert Ridge Marketplace, a large lifestyle shopping center. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Eastbound Loop 101 approaching 56th Street (Exit 32), one-quarter mile. It seems that most exits on Loop 101 gets the following advance signs: one mile, one half mile, one-quarter mile, and exit/gore point. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Exit 32 is 56th Street, which leads south toward Paradise Valley through North Phoenix. Photo taken 03/25/07.
The next 15 exits after Exit 32 along eastbound are for Scottsdale as evidenced by this sign. First among these exits is Exit 34, Scottsdale Road. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Loop 101 became nationally known for a test program operated by the City of Scottsdale. Due to a speeding problem (Loop 101 was well known for it's excessive speeds), the city put on a photo speed enforcement program. While controversial, the program worked to lower average speeds along the freeway, and the Arizona Department of Transportation took over the program in June 2007. Photo taken 03/25/07.
The next three exits are Scottsdale Road, Hayden Road and Pima Road/Princess Drive. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Eastbound Loop 101 at Exit 34, Scottsdale Road. This major city street actually parallels Loop 101 as the beltway transitions from eastbound to southbound along the inner loop. Photo taken 03/25/07.
This photo shows the first of the three speed camera arrays located along eastbound/southbound Loop 101. The cameras are programmed to trigger 11 MPH above the speed limit. Photo taken 03/25/07.
The next three exits are Hayden Road, Pima Road/Princess Drive, and Frank Lloyd Wright Boulevard. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Hayden Road departs from Loop 101 here, at exit 35. The connections to the Hayden Road ramp were completed after the freeway - this exit was not open until 2005. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Eastbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 36, Pima Road and Princess Drive, three-quarters of a mile. These signs are all reflective without button copy, which is a recently-adopted standard for new signage in Arizona. Previously, all signs were reflective and button copy. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Eastbound Loop 101 is starting to turn southbound as it approaches Exit 36, Pima Road and Princess Drive. Pima Road leads toward north Scottsdale. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Eastbound Loop 101 at Exit 36, Pima Road and Princess Drive. Loop 101 turns southbound at this point. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 38, Frank Lloyd Wright Boulevard, one-quarter of a mile. Attached to the same sign is Raintree Drive and Thunderbird Road, three-quarters of a mile (Exit 39). Use Frank Lloyd Wright Blvd to reach Taliesin West, the winter campus of the famed architect. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 at Exit 38, Frank Lloyd Wright Boulevard, approaching Exit 39, Raintree Drive and Thunderbird Road, next right. Frank Lloyd Wright Drive arcs southeasterly from this interchange, roughly parallel to the Hayden-Rhodes Aqueduct en route to Shea Boulevard. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 at Exit 39, Raintree Drive and Thunderbird Road. Thunderbird Road is interrupted several times as it heads west across the valley, with breaks at the Scottsdale Airpark and Phoenix Mountains Preserve. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 40, Cactus Road. As is common on the newer segments of Loop 101 (and Loop 202), many of the bridges and interchanges are decorated with Native American-themed freeway art, such as the decorations on this overpass. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 at exit 40, Cactus Road. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Advance signage for the next three exits - Shea Boulevard, 90th Street/Pima Road, and Via De Ventura. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Now deep into Scottsdale, Loop 101 goes below grade as it approaches Exit 41, Shea Boulevard. Shea Boulevard in the grid system is equivalent to Peoria Avenue at the west end of the Valley. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 42, 90th Street/Pima Road, three-quarters of a mile. Note the single-point urban interchange bridge above for Shea Boulevard. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 42, 90th Street/Pima Road, one-half of a mile. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 42, 90th Street/Pima Road, next right. Photo taken 03/25/07.
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Southbound Loop 101 approaching exit 43, Via De Ventura. Photos taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 at Exit 43, Via de Ventura, in Scottsdale. Via de Ventura leads west to Scottsdale Road near Paradise Valley. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Distance sign to Indian Bend Road, McDonald Drive and Chaparral Road. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 approaching exit 44, Indian Bend Road, 1/4 mile. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 at Exit 44, Indian Bend Road. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Distance sign to McDonald Drive, Chaparral Road and Indian School Road. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 at exit 45, McDonald Road. Loop 101 passes through the Salt River-Pima Maricopa Indian Community, hence the wide open feel of the freeway compared to the east-west section through North Scottsdale. Photo taken 03/25/07.
The next exit is Exit 46, Chaparral Road, 3/4 mile. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 at Exit 46, Chaparral Road. Photo taken 03/25/07.
The next three exits are Indian School Road, Thomas Road and McDowell Road. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Use Exit 47, Indian School Road, to reach Downtown Scottsdale. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 at Exit 47, Indian School Road. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Distance sign to Thomas Road, McDowell Road and McKellips Road. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 at Exit 48, Thomas Road. Photo taken 03/25/07.
The next exit along southbound Loop 101 is Exit 49, McDowell Road. One of the best road scenes in Phoenix may be found by taking McDowell Road west toward downtown Phoenix. Passing by the twin buttes and Papago Park, the views of downtown are unparalleled. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 49, McDowell Road, one-quarter mile. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 at Exit 49, McDowell Road. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 50, McKellips Road. McKellips Road closely parallels Loop 202 in northern Tempe and Mesa. Photo taken 03/02/03.
A second restriction sign for hazardous cargo reminds motorists with that kind of cargo not to use Loop 202. This picture shows southbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 50, McKellips Road, and Exit 51, Loop 202. Photo taken 03/02/03.
Southbound Loop 101 at Exit 50, McKellips Road. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 51, Junction Loop 202, one half mile. Photo taken 03/25/07.
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Southbound Loop 101 approaching Exit 51, Junction Loop 202, a symmetrical stack interchange. Other such interchanges exist in Phoenix at Loop 202/Interstate 10, Interstate 17/Interstate 10 (northwest), Loop 202/U.S. 60, and Loop 202/Interstate 10/Arizona 51. Photo taken 03/02/03. Second photo taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 at Exit 51, Junction Loop 202. Loop 202 west leads to downtown Phoenix, with a direct connection to Interstate 10 and Arizona 51. Loop 202 east skirts the northern fringe of Mesa, providing a much-needed alternative to U.S. 60/Superstition Freeway through that area. Loop 202 ends at Power Road in Mesa currently, but restarts at University Drive to continue south and east to Interstate 10 near Chandler Boulevard. Photo taken 03/25/07.
The brown-colored Loop 202 shields are being phased out, and it is likely that these signs will only remain for a short while longer before being converted/replaced. This sign bridge is located on the transition from southbound Loop 101 onto Loop 202. Photo taken 03/02/03.
Distance sign to Rio Salado Parkway/8th Street/University Drive, Broadway Road, and Southern Avenue. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Southbound Loop 101 at Exit 51, Rio Salado Parkway, 8th Street, University Drive, and Apache Blvd. This exit is in the shadows of the Loop 101/202 partial stack interchange. Photo taken 03/25/07.
Jumping south of University Drive, the next exit is Broadway Road, exit 53. The Loop 101 shield here is a sign error - the cutout shield is designed for overhead signs rather than a standalone basis. Photo taken 03/26/07.
Advance signage for exit 54, Southern Avenue and Baseline Road. Photo taken 03/26/07.
Southern Avenue and Baseline Road depart here. The next exit is U.S. 60. Photo taken 03/26/07.



Photo Credits:

  • 03/01/03 by AARoads.
  • 03/02/03 by AARoads.
  • 03/25/07 by Kevin Trinkle.
  • 03/26/07 by Kevin Trinkle.

Page Updated 11-07-2007.