Interstate 375 - North Bay Drive

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Interstate 375 (North Bay Drive) is a 1.22-mile freeway spur from I-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 N on January 17, 19781 and from 9th Street N to a point west of U.S. 92 & SR 687 (4th Street N) near 6th Street N on September 17, 1979.2 North Bay Drive cost $3.1 million to build.3 However, its inclusion into the Interstate system did not occur until November 1982.4

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
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Flyovers from I-275 converge above 4th Avenue N (U.S. 19 Alternate/SR 595 southbound), just beyond their separation from 5th Avenue N. Photo taken 06/29/07. Second photo taken 10/08/16.
Tropicana Field, home of the Tampa Bay Rays Major League Baseball franchise, comes into view south of Interstate 375 along 1st Avenue S. Photo taken 06/29/07.
Three lanes continue east along the I-375 viaduct to a half diamond interchange with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Street N (9th Street). The forthcoming ramp connects with parallel U.S. 19 Alternate/SR 595 (4th Avenue N). Photo taken 10/08/16.
Tropicana Field lies west of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Street via 3rd Avenue S. The original home of the NHL Tampa Bay Lightning and the Tampa Bay Storm in the Arena Football League, the dome stadium opened in March 1990. Photo taken 07/30/06.
MLK, Jr. Street N and 8th Street N form a one-way couplet through Historic Uptown and the Mirror Lake communities west of Downtown. 8th Street N merges with MLK, Jr. Street ahead of the Crescent Lake and Euclid neighborhoods. Photo taken 10/08/16.
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I-375 elevates through an S-curve across MLK, Jr. St and 8th Street N to the freeway end by Mirror Lake and St. Petersburg Coliseum. Photos taken 10/08/16.
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A pair of end shields mark the eastern end of Interstate 375 as South Bay Drive merges with U.S. 19 Alternate & SR 595 (5th Avenue N). U.S. 19 Alternate & SR 595 conclude in 0.3 miles to the east at SR 687 (3rd/4th Streets N). Photos taken 10/08/16.
Interstate 375 West
U.S. 19 Alternate & SR 595 begin at the intersection of 5th Avenue N and 4th Street N, where U.S. 92 ends from the north and the one-way couplet of SR 687 through Downtown concludes. Northbound U.S. 19 Alternate follows 5th Avenue N west a quarter mile to Interstate 375 (North Bay Drive). Photo taken 12/27/00.
Two lanes separate from northbound U.S. 19 Alternate (5th Avenue N) at 7th Street N for the Interstate 375 freeway entrance. North Bay Drive shuttles traffic from Downtown St. Petersburg to I-275. Photo taken 10/08/16.
The lone shield assembly posted along Interstate 375 westbound stands at the separation with U.S. 19 Alternate (5th Avenue N). U.S. 19 Alternate parallels North Bay Drive westward to the Historic Kenwood neighborhood, where it intersects U.S. 19 (34th Street N). Photo taken 10/08/16.
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A confirming marker was previously posted along I-375 westbound ahead of the viaduct across 8th Street N. Photo taken 07/30/06. Second photo taken 06/29/07.
Entrance ramps from 8th Street N and U.S. 19 Alternate west of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Street N tie into westbound Interstate 375 over the ensuing stretch. Photo taken 10/08/16.
I-375 proceeds west with three lanes over 16th Street N and 4th Avenue N (U.S. 19 Alternate southbound) toward the three-wye interchange with Interstate 275. Photo taken 10/08/16.
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Interstate 375 (North Bay Drive) partitions with a flyover leading north onto I-275 through the Euclid and Ponce De Leon neighborhoods toward Tampa and a grade level ramp linking with I-275 south ahead of I-175 (South Bay Drive). Photo taken 10/08/16. Second photo taken 11/12/16.
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Provisions were made along the ramp to southbound Interstate 275 for an unbuilt ramp to adjacent 20th Street N. Photo taken 11/12/16. Second photo taken 10/08/16.
Interstate 375 scenes
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Street N connects with U.S. 19 Alternate/SR 595 (5th Avenue N) from the Historic Uptown neighborhood northwest of Downtown St. Petersburg. One of three entrance ramps to I-375 west lies nearby. Photo taken 08/05/14.

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. "Interstate feeders bring accessibility -- good or bad." St. Petersburg Times, July 13, 1980.
  4. American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) Route Numbering Committee Meeting, November 19, 1982 (document).


Photo Credits:

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

Connect with:
Interstate 275
U.S. 19 Alternate
U.S. 92
State Road 687 - 4th Street

Page Updated 05-16-2019.