Known as the Joe Ford Freeway, Interstate 759 comprises a 4.71-mile spur from Interstate 59 to Gadsden in northeastern Alabama. The four-lane freeway serves southern reaches of Gadsden with interchanges at Black Creek Parkway and U.S. 411. Interstate 759 opened to traffic in conjunction with its state spur, Alabama 759, on October 22, 1986. Work began in 1982 on the $41 million project.1

Planned Improvements

A second bridge over the Coosa River for Alabama 759 opened in summer 2004. Ghost ramps exist at the western terminus of Interstate 759 for a potential extension to U.S. 278 & 431 west of Gadsden. Additional plans also entail extending the freeway eastward to U.S. 431 (Meighan Boulevard) southeast of Gadsden. No timetable is set for either lengthening of Interstate 759 at the present time, but proposals for both date to 1988 and continue through 2009.


Interstate 759 east
A loop ramp forms the eastbound beginning of Interstate 759 from I-59 south. Traffic merges onto a roadway just east of a stub onto a bridge slated for two lanes, but striped for one. Photo taken 06/25/12.
Traffic from I-59 north joins I-759 east ahead of this reassurance marker. Photo taken 06/18/05.
The freeway passes over Brooke Avenue and Big Wills Creek as it leaves the junction with Interstate 59. Photo taken 06/25/12.
Continuing east along Interstate 759 to the one-mile guide sign for Exit 2 (Black Creek Parkway). Black Creek Parkway comprises a four-lane divided highway between 11th Street to the north and Sutton Bridge Road to the south. Photo taken 06/25/12.
One half mile west of the diamond interchange (Exit 2) with Black Creek Parkway. Black Creek Parkway ended just south of Interstate 759 at Wills Creek Road originally. An extension of Black Creek Parkway southward to Sutton Bridge Road opened on August 2, 2011. Construction on the $9.4-million project commenced in March 2010.2,3 Photo taken 06/25/12.
Eastbound at the Exit 2 ramp departure for Black Creek Parkway. Sutton Bridge Road continues south from Black Creek parkway to Rainbow City. Steele Station Road stems southwest from the road to Alabama 77 (Grand Avenue). 11th Street connects I-759 with the South Gadsden community. Photo taken 06/25/12.
Interstate 759 eastbound shield posted ahead of the Eastside Drive overpass. Photo taken 06/25/12.
Interstate 759 crosses H. Neely Henry Lake via a four-lane causeway between Eastside Drive and U.S. 411 (Rainbow Drive). U.S. 411 enters Gadsden from Ashville and Rainbow City to the southwest. The US highway meets Interstate 759 on the north shore of the lake by Gadsden Mall. Photo taken 06/25/12.
Exit 4A carries drivers onto U.S. 411 (Rainbow Drive) southbound into Rainbow City. Like Interstate 759, Rainbow Drive travels a causeway across H. Neely Henry Lake. Downtown Rainbow City lies 3.3 miles to the southwest. Photo taken 06/25/12.
A loop ramp carries drivers onto U.S. 411 (Rainbow Drive) northbound as Interstate 759 transitions into Alabama 759 east. U.S. 411 follows Albert Rains Boulevard along the Coosa River banks into downtown Gadsden to the north. Photo taken 06/25/12.
Alabama 759 east
Alabama 759 commences east from I-759 0.866 miles along a four-lane expressway. Photo taken 06/25/12.
Alabama 759 connects the freeway with Alabama 291 (George Wallace Drive) 0.9 miles south of its junction with U.S. 278 & 431 (Meighan Boulevard) at Hood Avenue in east Gadsden. Photo taken 06/18/05.
A truck shield for Alabama 759 precedes the joint termini of SR 759 east and SR 291 (George Wallace Drive) south. The assembly should instead display Alabama 291 north, for the 0.890-mile route. Photo taken 06/25/12.
Approaching the signalized intersection of Alabama 759 and George Wallace Drive in Gadsden. Alabama 291 begins and arcs north along George Wallace Drive and Hood Avenue to Broad Street and U.S. 278 & 431 (Meighan Boulevard). Photo taken 06/25/12.
George Wallace Drive continues south from the end of Alabama 759 as a local road to Gadsden Community College and Padenreich Avenue. Photo taken 06/25/12.
Interstate 759 west
The westbound beginning of Alabama 759, a four-lane expressway linking Alabama 291 (George Wallace Drive) and Interstate 759 at U.S. 411 (Rainbow Drive). Alabama 759 parallels an adjacent shopping plaza and an arm of H. Neely Henry Lake between George Wallace Drive and the transition into Interstate 759. Photo taken 06/25/12.
One half mile from the six-ramp parclo interchange with U.S. 411 (Rainbow Drive) on Alabama 759 west. U.S. 411 departs downtown Gadsden via Albert Rains Boulevard along the Coosa River to Rainbow Drive and H. Neely Henry Lake. Photo taken 06/25/12.
Alabama 759 spans the Coosa River ahead of the northbound off-ramp to U.S. 411 (Exit 4B). Photo taken 06/25/12.
Exit 4B leaves the westbound beginning of Interstate 759 for U.S. 411 (Rainbow Drive) north to downtown Gadsden. Interstate 759 carries Gadsden and Rainbow City traffic west to Interstate 59 and the nearby city of Attalla. Photo taken 06/25/12.
A begin shield formally starts the Interstate highway west. Photo taken 06/25/12.
Interstate 759 westbound at the Exit 4A loop ramp onto U.S. 411 (Rainbow Drive) southbound. Rainbow Drive straddles H. Neely Henry Lake on a narrow causeway between Gadsden and Rainbow City. The US highway meets Alabama 77 (Grand Avenue) 3.7 miles to the south. Photo taken 06/25/12.
The first westbound reassurance shield posted for Interstate 759 along the Black Creek Lake causeway. Photo taken 06/18/05.
One mile east of the diamond interchange (Exit 2) with Black Creek Parkway. Photo taken 06/25/12.
Eastside Drive passes over the freeway at the half-mile guide sign for Black Creek Parkway (Exit 2). Black Creek Parkway carries drivers north to 11th Street in south Gadsden and south to Sutton Bridge Road for Rainbow City. Photo taken 06/25/12.
Westbound at the Exit 2 ramp departure for Black Creek Parkway. An extension of Black Creek Road opened on August 2, 2011 between Wills Creek Road, just south of I-759, and Steele Station Road at Sutton Bridge Road. Photo taken 06/25/12.
Interstate 759 continues west on the two-mile drive between Black Creek Parkway and Interstate 59. Photo taken 06/18/05.
A series of signs advise motorists of the impending freeway end for Interstate 759 at I-59. Ghost ramps at the junction hint toward a possible westward extension directly into Attalla. For the time being motorists must use Interstate 59 north to Exit 183 (U.S. 278 & 431) westbound to reach the city. Photo taken 06/25/12.
Spanning a relief channel east of Wills Creek, Interstate 759 travels to within one half mile of Interstate 59. Photo taken 06/25/12.
Traffic shifts from the Interstate 759 mainline onto the ramps for Interstate 59 at the bridge over Brooke Avenue and Big Wills Creek. Concrete barriers conceal a stub end from motorists as Interstate 759 otherwise concludes.
If extended, Interstate 759 will tie into U.S. 278 west of Attalla. Otherwise motorists partition between ramps to Interstate 59 north for Fort Payne and south for Trussville. Photo taken 06/25/12.
An Interstate 59 gore point sign stands next to the stub end of I-759 west. Photo taken 06/25/12.
A directional cloverleaf interchange handles the movements between Interstates 59 and 759 west of Gadsden. Interstate 59 traffic splits into the respective directions to Chattanooga and Birmingham. Photo taken 06/25/12.
Interstate 59 Alabama shields posted at the ramp split of Interstate 759's end. Interstate 59 ends 79 miles to the north at I-24. Southward the freeway meets Interstate 459 in 45 miles. Photo taken 06/25/12.
Interstate 759 scenes
Freeway style guide sign posted along Alabama 291 (George Wallace Drive) northbound after its intersection with Alabama 759 west to Interstate 759 west. Alabama 291 ends at U.S. 278 & 438 east of the Coosa River and their interchange with U.S. 411 (Albert Rains Boulevard). Photo taken 06/18/05.
Alabama 291 (George Wallace Drive) ends at the westbound beginning of Alabama 759 (signed here as Alabama 759 Truck). George Wallace Drive continues south to Padenreich Avenue and a grid of residential streets. Alabama 759 winds west and crosses the Coosa River to become Interstate 759. Photo taken 06/18/05.
George Wallace Drive northbound approaches the beginning of Alabama 291 north and 759 west. Photo taken 06/25/12.
Alabama 759 connects George Wallace Drive and Alabama 291 with Interstate 759 at U.S. 411. Alabama 291 links the expressway end with U.S. 278 & 431 across from downtown Gadsden. Photo taken 06/25/12.

Sources:

  1. "I-759 opens Wednesday." Gadsden Times, October 20, 1986.
  2. "Gadsden City Council focuses on Black Creek Parkway extension." The Gadsden Times, July 5, 2011.
  3. "Mayors cut ribbon on Black Creek Parkway extension." FOX6 WBRC, July 26, 2011.


Photo Credits:

06/18/05, 06/25/12 by AARoads

Connect with:
Interstate 59

Page Updated 10-14-2012.