Interstate 375 (North Bay Drive) is a 1.34-mile freeway spur from Interstate 275 to U.S. 19 Alternate & SR 595 north of Downtown St. Petersburg. Though not signed, I-375 doubles as State Road 592 and North Bay Drive for its entire length.

Constructed in conjunction with its southern counterpart South Bay Drive (Interstate 175), North Bay Drive was built in the late 1970s. The freeway opened in two phases: from I-275 east to 9th Street North on January 17, 19781 and from 9th Street North to a point west of U.S. 92 & SR 687 (4th Street North) near 6th Street North on September 17, 1979.2 However, its inclusion into the Interstate system did not occur until November 1982.3

Until the 2002 FDOT exit renumbering plan, interchanges along I-375 east were sequentially numbered. As a result of its short distance, new exit numbers were not established and instead were removed entirely from the freeway.


Interstate 375 east
The eastbound beginning of Interstate 375 on the transition ramp from Interstate 275 north. Photo taken 10/08/16.
Taking the flyover from I-275 south to I-375 east, high rises from Downtown St. Petersburg come into view. Photo taken 06/29/07.
Peering south from the same flyover at Tropicana Field, home of the Major League Baseball franchise Tampa Bay Rays. Photo taken 06/29/07.
The two flyover ramps from I-275 consolidate ahead of the half diamond interchange with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Street North (9th Street). The off-ramp connects with parallel Florida 595 (4th Avenue North) ahead of its intersections with MLK Jr. Street North and 8th Street North, a one-way street couplet through the Mirror Lake and Tropicana Field vicinity west of Downtown. Otherwise I-375 continues beyond the ramp with two eastbound lanes. Photo taken 10/08/16.
Tropicana Field lies west of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Street via 3rd Avenue South. The domed stadium opened March 1990 and was the original home of the Tampa Bay Lightning (National Hockey League) and the Tampa Bay Storm (Arena Football League). Photo taken 07/30/06.
Signage posted at the ramp departure from Interstate 375 east onto Florida 595 (4th Avenue North) for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and 8th Streets North. 8th Street North merges with MLK Jr. Street ahead of the Crescent Lake and Euclid communities. MLK Jr. Street carries four overall lanes on its northward path to the Gateway community and Interstate 275 near the Howard Frankland Bridge. Photo taken 10/08/16.
An advisory sign alerts motorists to the pending end of the Interstate 375 freeway in 2,000 feet. The freeway will merge onto Florida 595 (4th Avenue North) ahead of an intersection with 5th Street North. Photo taken 10/08/16.
I-375 east descends from the 9th & 8th Street viaduct to street grade. Speed limits reduce to 30 mph in anticipation of the merge with 4th Avenue South. Photo taken 10/08/16.
2 photos
2 photos
The 1.34-mile Interstate 375 officially comes to its end as the mainline prepares to merge with Florida 595 (4th Avenue North) east prior to 5th Street North. 4th Avenue North will continue to carry SR 595 to its end at 3rd Street North (Florida 687). Photos taken 10/08/16.
Interstate 375 west
Two lanes depart Florida 595 & U.S. 19 Alternate north near 7th Street North for the beginning of Interstate 375 west. The short spur freeway serves as a collector for Downtown traffic bound for Interstate 275 north and south. Photo taken 10/08/16.
This shield assembly serves as the only confirming marker along the westbound mainline for I-375. Placed sometime after June 2011, it directs traffic onto the connector freeway while U.S. 19 Alternate (SR 595) continues along 5th Avenue North. Photo taken 10/08/16.
A directional ramp joins Interstate 375 west from 8th Street North next. Photo taken 10/08/16.
A second on-ramp follows from Florida 595 (5th Avenue North) west after its intersection with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Street North. Photo taken 05/27/05.
Now three lanes wide, I-375 west quickly approaches its terminus at Interstate 275. One left lane will leave for I-275 south toward the Sunshine Skyway, while two right lanes default onto northbound I-275 to Tampa. Photo taken 10/08/16.
Interstate 375 (North Bay Drive) comes to an end at a stack interchange adjacent to the half diamond interchange between U.S. 19 Alternate & SR 595 (5th Avenue North) and I-275. I-275 north next meets 22nd Avenue North at the Euclid and Ponce De Leon neighborhoods. I-275 south continues shortly to I-175 (South Bay Drive) east. Photo taken 10/08/16.
Traffic partitions into a two-lane ramp to Interstate 275 north and a one lane ramp to Interstate 275 south; Florida 595 (5th Avenue North) travels adjacent below en route to U.S. 19 (34th Street North) and U.S. 19 Alternate. Photo taken 07/30/06.
2 photos
2 photos
A look at Interstate 375 west along the ramp to Interstate 275 south. Provisions were made to provide an additional off-ramp to nearby 20th Street North but was never constructed due to a conflict between the proposed ramp from the Interstate 275/Interstate 375 interchange and the location of adjacent Florida 595. Photos taken 10/08/16.
Interstate 375 scenes
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Street North (9th Street North) reaches its intersection with Florida 595 & U.S. 19 Alternate (5th Avenue North). Motorists bound for the short Interstate 375 spur to Interstate 275 are directed to follow 5th Avenue North. Continue south under I-375 along Dr. MLK Jr. Street North to reach Downtown St. Petersburg and Interstate 175 west. Photo taken 08/05/14.
Two lanes prepare to depart U.S. 19 Alternate & Florida 595 north (5th Avenue North) for Interstate 375 west. The 1.34-mile spur connects with Interstate 275 north to Tampa and south to Bradenton. Photo taken 07/10/11.
2 photos
2 photos
Historic view of the approach to Interstate 375 west along Florida 595 (5th Avenue North). This sign has since been replaced and moved to a new location. Photos taken 12/27/00.
Interstate 375 Archive
Interstate 375 east
A look at the original guide signs posted ahead of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Street North (9th Street) off-ramp. Photo taken 07/30/06.
A look at the previous installation of overheads along Interstate 375 east at the Florida 595 (4th Avenue North) off-ramp. Florida 595 partitions between a one-way street couplet between 4th and 5th Avenues North from Florida 687 (3rd Street North) west to near 16th Street North. Photo taken 07/30/06.
This set of two-digit width shields marked the end for I-375 until sometime after January 2016 when their replacements were posted. Photo taken 08/24/13.
Interstate 375 west
2 photos
2 photos
These two sets of confirming markers, none of which remain posted, have stood along I-375 west at the mainline entrance ramp. Photo taken 07/30/06. Second photo taken 06/29/07.
Former overhead assembly found along I-375 west beyond the merge ramp from MLK Jr. Street North. These were replaced by May 2009. Photo taken 07/30/06.
Another set of guide signs at the split to I-275 north to Tampa and south to the Sunshine Skyway and Bradenton saw replacement by 2009. Photo taken 07/30/06.

Sources:

  1. "I-275 downtown feeder now open to northbound traffic", St. Petersburg Times, January 17, 1978.
  2. "I-275 Feeder Expected Open Monday", The Evening Independent, September 15, 1979.
  3. American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) Route Numbering Committee Meeting, November 19, 1982 (document).


Photo Credits:

12/27/00, 05/27/05, 07/30/06, 06/29/07, 07/10/11, 08/24/13, 08/05/14, 10/08/16 by AARoads

Connect with:
Interstate 275

Page Updated 10-08-2016.