Interstate 240

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Forming a nine-mile urban loop, Interstate 240 joins Interstate 40 with Downtown Asheville to the north along a freeway varying between 1960s and 1980s standards. The route doubles as I-26 between the west end and Downtown while portions of U.S. 19, 23, 70, 74-A use the freeway as well.

The oldest section of I-240 was built in 1961 as a new alignment for U.S. 70 to the north of Downtown. This portion ran east from Patton Avenue to North Carolina 694 (Town Mountain Road). Work later added the freeway between I-40 and Patton Avenue on the west side of Asheville in 1969 as NC 191. The easternmost section from NC 694 to I-40 and U.S. 74-A was completed in 1980.1

Extension of Interstate 26 from I-40 in southwest Asheville to I-81 in the Tri-Cities of Tennessee created an overlap with I-240 in 2003. Future work, slated for 2020 or later, will see I-26 shifted to a new alignment, the I-26 Connector, in conjunction with a modernization of the substandard section of I-240.

Interstate 240 North Carolina Guides

Interstate 240 scenes
Interstate 240 and U.S. 70 shield assembly posted within the three-level interchange at Tunnel Road. This state-named shield was eventually replaced. Photo taken 08/01/01.
The eastbound c/d roadway from Tunnel Road at the intersecting ramps with I-240 and U.S. 70 at Exit 7. Photo taken 07/16/05.
2 photos
2 photos
The westbound c/d roadway from I-240 to U.S. 70 (Tunnel Road) ties into the entrance ramp from U.S. 70 west at a T-intersection. Photos taken 12/31/13.
NC 191 (Brevard Road) south at the entrance ramp to Interstate 240 east & 26 west. Brevard Road continues south from here to a folded diamond interchange (Exit 47) with Interstate 40 nearby. Photo taken 07/16/05.
U.S. 19/23 trailblazers direct motorists onto Interstate 240 east & 26 west to Downtown Asheville. U.S. 19/23 Business first merge onto the freeway at Exit 2. They are followed by the U.S. 19/23 mainline merge at Exit 3, with all four routes spanning the French Broad River with U.S. 74A into central Asheville. Photo taken 07/16/05.

Photo Credits:

  • 08/01/01 by Carter Buchanan.
  • 07/16/05 by AARoads.
  • 12/31/13 by AARoads and Carter Buchanan.

Connect with:
Interstate 26
Interstate 40
U.S. 19
U.S. 23
U.S. 70
U.S. 74

Page Updated 10-15-2015.