Interstate 97

Interstate 97 Maryland


I-97 is the shortest two-digit Interstate in the 48 contiguous states. With only 17 miles, I-97 also lies wholly within Anne Arundel County. Connecting U.S. 50/301 (John Hansen Highway) with Interstate 695 along the Baltimore Beltway, it generally serves as a commuter route between Baltimore and Annapolis.

Two freeways make up the alignment of Interstate 97: the Glen Burnie Bypass (former MD 3) to the north, and the former eastern extent of MD 32 to the south. The north end includes a direct connection with I-895 Spur to the Baltimore Harbor Tunnel.

Parallel U.S. Routes

Interstate 97 replaced portions of MD 3, which was the northernmost extent of U.S. 301 until 1960, when it was redirected to end at Glasgow, Delaware.


During the 1970s, Maryland proposed routes for both I-68 and Interstate 97 in the Annapolis area. I-68 was planned for U.S. 50 between the Capital Beltway and a point west of Annapolis. I-97 was projected for a north to south route from the end of I-68 to the Baltimore Beltway. In addition, the freeway along U.S. 50 east from I-68 and I-97 to the present end of I-595, was incorporated as Interstate 197. Interstate 297 was also introduced as the replacement for MD 3, from U.S. 50/301 north to MD 32. The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) approved I-97 north of U.S. 50 and I-297 on November 15, 1975. Conditional approval was granted to I-197 and to the I-68 segment as an extension of I-97.

Further changes from Maryland regarding Interstate 97 were submitted to AASHTO on October 3, 1981. Again Interstate 68 was proposed in place of I-97 for the U.S. 50 freeway between the Capital Beltway and the previously referenced point west of Annapolis. The I-197 spur east from there to MD 70 was then proposed as Interstate 168. These changes were approved AASHTO by subject to Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) concurrence. Interstate 197 was never signed, Interstate 297 was never built, and by 1989, both proposed I-68 and I-168 were instead renumbered as Interstate 595.

The Glen Burnie Bypass was constructed during the 1960s as a new alignment for MD 3. This resulted in the designation of MD 3 Business, which still runs east of I-97 along Crain Highway. The freeway south from the MD 3/ 32 intersection to U.S. 50/301 opened to traffic in 19891

Construction for Interstate 97 between Dorrs Corner (MD 178) and New Cut Road (Exit 12) ran from 1988 to February 13, 1991. The $31 million project wrapped up with the opening of the new northbound lanes through the Millersville area.2

Portions of old MD 3 were converted into an east side frontage road (Veterans Highway) along the newly opened Interstate 97 in 1991.2 A traffic light on I-97 at Old Mill Road remained in operation along this stretch until July 2, 1991, as work to convert Veterans Highway to two-way traffic was delayed by six weeks.3

I-97 Maryland - 1989

I-97 first appeared in the 1989 edition of the Rand McNally North American Road Atlas.
Interstate 97 was constructed as a stand alone freeway parallel to MD 178 southeast from MD 3/32 to U.S. 50/301. The remainder replaced MD 3 along both Crain Highway and the Glen Burnie Bypass.

Route Information

  • North End – Baltimore, MD

  • South End – Annapolis, MD

  • Branch Routes – 0

  • Mileage – 17.62

  • Cities – Annapolis, Baltimore

  • JunctionsI-595 I-695 I-895

Source: December 31, 2021 Interstate Route Log and Finders List

I-97 Annual Average Daily Traffic (AADT)

Baltmore, MD area - 1966
The 1966 Maryland Official Highway Map showed the path of the Arundel Expressway, the predecessor to Interstate 97, as slated for completion in 1969.

The Annapolis Expressway (MD 10) was first proposed as the freeway route between Annapolis and Baltimore. Studied initially in 1956, MD 10 was to run southeast along side MD 2 to U.S. 50. Community opposition halted work on the expressway south of Pasadena in the late 1970s, leading to a cancellation of those sections. The remainder north from MD 2 to I-695 was finally completed on March 2, 1991.4

Photo Guides

North End I-695 I-895 Spur – Baltimore, Maryland

I-97 North at I-695 I-895 Spur

I-97 north one mile ahead of I-695 in Ferndale, MD.

Interstate 97 progresses through Ferndale with three northbound lanes to Exit 17 with the Baltimore Beltway. 12/21/22

I-895 Spur extends north from I-97 to the Baltimore Harbor Tunnel Thruway.

The mainline of Interstate 97 transitions into I-895 Spur, a connector leading north from the Beltway to the tolled Harbor Tunnel Thruway by the Port of Baltimore. 12/21/22

I-695 connects I-97 with the Port of Baltimore.

Forthcoming Exit 17 B joins the outside lanes of Interstate 695 east to Dundalk and Port of Baltimore facilities at Sparrows Point. 12/21/22

I-97 north ahead of the Baltimore Beltway.

A flyover ramp (Exit 17 A) departs from I-97 north at the Furnance Branch Road underpass for the left side of Interstate 695 west at Linthicum Heights. 12/21/22

I-97 north at I-695 west to Baltimore and Catonsville, MD.

Exit 17 A departs with two lanes for the inner loop of Interstate 695 to Catonsville, Pikesville and Towson. Connections with MD 295 (Baltimore-Washington Parkway) lead motorists to Downtown Baltimore from I-695 west. 12/21/22

I-97 north ends at I-695 and I-895 Spur in Ferndale, MD.

Interstate 97 ends as Exit 17 B parts ways for I-695 east to the tolled Francis Scott Key Bridge and Essex. I-895 Spur extends the freeway east to a loop ramp for I-695 west ahead of the exchange with MD 648 at Ferndale. The spur otherwise defaults motorists northward directly to the Harbor Tunnel Thruway along I-895. 12/21/22

I-695 West at I-97

I-695 west at I-97 - Brooklyn Park, MD

Advancing one mile to Interstate 97, a c/d roadway accompanies I-695 west through the exchange with MD 10 (Arundel Expressway) south to MD 2 (Govenor Ritchie Highway) north into Brooklyn Park. 01/04/19

I-695 west at I-97 - Brooklyn Park, MD

Continuing beyond the entrance ramp from MD 2 (Governor Ritchie Highway), I-695 travels between Brooklyn Park and Ferndale to I-895 Spur and I-97 south. 01/04/19

I-695 west between I-895 Spur and I-97 at Brooklyn Park, MD.

Connecting I-97 north with MD 648 at Ferndale, a loop ramp joins Interstate 695 west from I-895 Spur north. Exit 4 joins the Baltimore Beltway mainline with Interstate 97 south to Glen Bernie next. 12/21/22

I-695 west at I-97 south to Glen Burnie, MD.

Exit 4 loops onto the south end of I-895 Spur as it transitions into Interstate 97. I-97 leads south to U.S. 50/301 east to Annapolis and the Chesapeake Bay Bridge and west to Bowie and Washington, D.C. 12/21/22

I-695 East at I-97

I-695 east at MD 295, 1.5 miles from I-97 at Linthicum Heights.

Interstate 695 arcs southeast from MD 295 (Baltimore-Washington Parkway) between the Linthicum Heights and Pumphrey communities to I-97 at Exit 4. 12/21/22

I-695 east ahead of MD 170 to Linthicum and I-97 to Annapolis.

Interstate 97 comprises a commuter route south through Anne Arundel County suburbs between Glen Burnie and Annapolis. 12/21/22

I-695 east at MD 170, a half mile from I-97 in Linthicum.

The wye interchange linking I-695 east with I-97 south and from I-97 north to I-695 west ties into inside lanes of the Baltimore Beltway. 12/21/22

I-695 east at I-97 south and MD 648 at Linthicum Heights.

Traffic partitions for Interstate 97 south at Exit 4 simultaneously at Exit 5 to MD 648 (Baltimore-Annapolis Boulevard) at Ferndale. 12/21/22

I-695 east at I-97 south to Glen Burnie, MD.

I-97 south links Baltimore with U.S. 301 to Bowie and Richmond, Virginia. 12/21/22

I-97 South

I-97 south of I-695 at Ferndale, MD.

The first confirming marker for Interstate 97 appears at the W Furnace Branch Road underpass in Ferndale, just south of I-695.

South End I-595 US 50 US 301 – Annapolis, Maryland

I-97 South at I-595 US 50 US 301

I-97 south one mile ahead of I-595/US 50-301 near Parole, MD.

Interstate 97 navigates southeast through a series of S-curves through wood land areas toward U.S. 50/301 (John Hanson Highway) at Exit 1. 12/21/22

I-97 south ahead of US 50/301 in Anne Arundel County, MD.

As part of its route between Richmond, Virginia and Middletown, Delaware, U.S. 301 overlaps with U.S. 50 for 33 miles between MD 3 at Bowie and Queenstown beyond the Chesapeake Bay Bridge. 12/21/22

I-97 south ends in a half mile.

Traffic separates in a half mile for sweeping directional ramps for U.S. 50 west / U.S. 301 south to Bowie, Waldorf and Washington, DC and U.S. 50 east / U.S. 301 north to Annapolis, Maryland’s Eastern Shore and Ocean City. 12/21/22

Traffic partitions from I-97 south for I-595/US 50-301 at Parole, MD.

A two-wye interchange joins I-97 with unsigned Interstate 595 and U.S. 50-301. 12/21/22

I-97 south at US 50/301 east to the Bay Bridge and MD 665 south to Annapolis.

The eastbound connection to U.S. 50/301 joins a collector distributor roadway to MD 665, an expressway spur into Annapolis. 12/21/22

I-97 south at MD 665 south to Annapolis.

MD 665 (Aris T. Allen Boulevard) angles 2.68 miles southeast to Forest Drive in Annapolis from the c/d roadway joining I-97 south with U.S. 50/301 east. 12/21/22

I-595 US 50 West US 301 South at I-97

US 50/301 west at MD 450 in Parole.

Succeeding off-ramps depart unsigned I-595-U.S. 50 west / U.S. 301 south over the course of 1.25 miles for MD 2 south, MD 450 (West Street) and Interstate 97 north. 12/21/22

US 50/301 west at MD 450, a half mile from I-97 in Parole.

A parclo B2 interchange (Exit 23 B) joins U.S. 50-301 (John Hanson Highway) with MD 450 a half mile ahead of Interstate 97 north. MD 450 is the historic alignment of U.S. 50 west from Annapolis to Bowie. 12/21/22

US 50/301 west at I-97 north in Parole, MD.
I-97 begins north from I-595/US 50-301 west at Exit 21.

Exit 21 forms a westbound c/d roadway joining U.S. 50-301 west with Interstate 97 north to Glen Burnie and Baltimore. 12/21/22

US 50/301 c/d roadway west at I-97 north in Parole, MD.
Traffic partitions from Exit 21 to I-97 north and I-595/US 50-301 west.

The c/d roadway from U.S. 50/301 westbound at Exit 21 links the west end of MD 665 (Aris T. Allen Boulevard) to both I-97 and I-595. 12/21/22

I-595 US 50 East US 301 North at I-97

US 50/301 east one mile ahead of I-97 at Parole, MD.

Advancing east from the South River, U.S. 50 east / U.S. 301 (John Hanson Highway) north run alongside suburban areas at Parole to Exit 21 with Interstate 97 north. 12/16/22

US 50/301 east a half mile from I-97 north to Baltimore, MD.

One half mile ahead of the two-wye interchange (Exit 21) with Interstate 97 north on I-595/U.S. 50-301 east. I-97 provides the first leg in a limited access route to Downtown Baltimore, located 25 miles to the north. 12/16/22

US 50/301 east at I-97 north in Parole, MD.

Exit 21 separates from U.S. 50 east / U.S. 301 north for Interstate 97 north. The ensuing ramp connects with a c/d roadway joining I-97 south and I-595 east with MD 665 (Aris T. Allen Boulevard). MD 665 links the freeway with MD 2 (Solomons Island Road). 12/16/22


  1. MDRoads: I-97.
  2. “New Segment Of I-97 Opens” The Capital (Annapolis, MD), February 17, 1991.
  3. “State Pulls Out All The Stops On I-97” The Capital (Annapolis, MD), July 6, 1991.
  4. “Baltimore Connector Opens.” The Capital (Annapolis, MD), March 12, 1991.

Page updated April 7, 2023.