Interstate 79

Interstate 79 North
Interstate 79 & 80 see a full-cloverleaf interchange between the two highways in southeastern Mercer County. The two freeways meet 15 miles east of Sharon near the town of Mercer. Interstate 80 provides the main route between Ohio and the New York City metropolitan area. The freeway passes by smaller cities and towns throughout the northern half of Pennsylvania. Photo taken 10/01.
Exit 116A leaves Interstate 79 northbound at the Pennsylvania 58 (Mercer Grove City Road) overpass for Interstate 80 eastbound. Note the control cities used for both Interstate 79 and Interstate 80. In Ohio, the eastbound signs for Interstate 80 read a control city of New York City. However once in Pennsylvania, Interstate 80 sees Sharon and Clarion as the control points. For Interstate 79 north, the westbound control city of Interstate 80 is Sharon and not Akron or Cleveland, both larger cities. Photo taken 10/01.
The Exit 116B loop ramp departs Interstate 79 northbound for Interstate 80 west to Mercer and Sharon. Interstate 80 crosses the Ohio state line within 20 miles near the city of Youngstown. From there Interstate 80 heads west to merge with the Ohio Turnpike at Interstate 76 en route to Cleveland, Ohio. Interstate 76 stems west from that point to Akron. Photo taken 10/01.
Northbound Interstate 79 approaching U.S. 62. U.S. 62 leads west toward Sharon, parallel to Interstate 80, and it turns northeast toward Franklin and ultimately the Buffalo, New York, area. Mercer is famous for being the boyhood home of musician Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails fame. It's easy to tell that Mercer is a long way from Nashville. Photo taken 10/01.
Northbound Interstate 79 at Exit 130, which is Pennsylvania 358. Like many three-digit state routes in this part of the state, Pennsylvania 358 is a child of Pennsylvania 58, which runs east-west from the Ohio State Line near Jamestown southeast to Greenville, Mercer, and Grove City, then due east to its terminus at Pennsylvania 68 at Sligo. Pennsylvania 358 runs from the Ohio State Line east to U.S. 62 at Sandy Lake. It meets its parent at Greenville. Photo taken 10/01.
Northbound Interstate 79 at U.S. 6 and U.S. 322, Exit 147. U.S. 6 and 322 are a divided highway here, and they remain a divided highway until they reach Conneaut Lakes, which is where U.S. 6 and 322 split. U.S. 6 and U.S. 322 will meet again in Cleveland, which is the western terminus of U.S. 322. U.S. 6 continues west all the way to Bishop, California, and at one time it ran all the way to Long Beach, California, near the Pacific Ocean. Heading east, U.S. 6 leads to Cape Cod, Massachusetts, and U.S. 322 heads toward Atlantic City, New Jersey. Photo taken 10/01.
Northbound Interstate 79 approaching U.S. 6N near Edinboro. U.S. 6N is a short connector between U.S. 20 at West Springfield and U.S. 6 near Mill Village. It is one of the few remaining directionally suffixed routes. As originally planned in the 1920s, U.S. 6 used to follow U.S. 6N west until its terminus at U.S. 20. Of course, U.S. 6 was extended dramatically westward over the years, and U.S. 6N is a residual of how U.S. 6 was originally conceived. U.S. 6N is only about 28 miles in length from end-to-end. Photo taken 10/01.
Signage for U.S. 6N at the of the offramp from Northbound Interstate 79. These are relatively new signs. A Wal-Mart and other amenities are located at this interchange. Photo taken 10/01.
Northbound Interstate 79 approaching Interstate 90, one mile. The skies are getting noticeably darker due to some inclement weather. Interstate 79 extends for a few miles north of Interstate 90, and it terminates at Pennsylvania 5 (West 12th Street). As originally planned, Interstate 79 was to end at Interstate 90, and the freeway stub north of Interstate 79 was to be known Interstate 179. However, by the time the freeway was constructed, it was all signed as Interstate 79. Photo taken 10/01.
Interstate 79 South
Interstate 79 northbound near the West Road over crossing at McKean. A guide sign advises motorists of the interchanges that serve Erie on both Interstate 79 north and Interstate 90 east. Erie is the county seat of Erie County at the crossroads of U.S. 19 & U.S. 20. Photo taken 10/01.
Exit 178A leaves Interstate 79 northbound for Interstate 90 east to south Erie and Buffalo, New York. Use Interstate 90 east also for Interstate 86 east to Jamestown and the Southern Tier of New York. Interstate 90 interchanges with U.S. 19 (Peach Street) at the next eastbound exit. Photo taken 10/01.
Northbound Interstate 79 at the westbound loop ramp onto Interstate 90 (Exit 178B). Interstate 90 sees five more interchanges before departing the Keystone State near West Springfield. Interstate 90 lines the southern shore of Lake Erie between Cleveland, Ohio and Buffalo, New York. Photo taken 10/01.
Interstate 79 enters the city of Erie just north of the Exit 180 diamond interchange with Interchange Road at Kearsarge. From there the freeway encounters U.S. 20 (West 26th Street) at Exit 182 just east of the city line. U.S. 20 bisects the city along 26th Street between Pittsburgh Avenue and Broad Street. The US highway follows Broad Street and Buffalo Road from Erie east to Wesleyville. Photo taken 10/01.
The final interchange of Interstate 79 joins Pennsylvania 5 (12th Street) with the freeway at Exits 183A/B. Exit 183A serves 12th Street eastbound for downtown Erie. Exit 183B loops onto Pennsylvania 5 westbound for Presque Isle State Park and Erie International Airport. Interstate 79 northbound otherwise defaults onto Bayfront Parkway eastbound ahead. Photo taken 10/01.
Exit 183B departs Interstate 79 northbound for Pennsylvania 5 (12th Street) westbound. The freeway transitions into Bayfront Parkway ahead. Bayfront Parkway constitutes a four-lane divided highway between Interstate 79, Lincoln Avenue, and Greengarden Road. The roadway narrows to two lanes northeast of Greengarden Road as it heads toward Presque Isle Bay and downtown Erie. Photo taken 10/01.
Interstate 79 South
The first southbound reassurance shield of Interstate 79 lies just beyond the Bayfront Parkway intersection with Lincoln Avenue. Bayfront Parkway becomes Interstate 79 and Interstate 79 passes underneath Pennsylvania 5 (12th Street) ahead. The first southbound exit serves U.S. 20 (26th Street) at Exit 182. Photo taken 10/07/01.
Interstate 79 southbound near the Cranberry Connector (Exit 78) at Cranberry. The Cranberry Connector joins Interstate 79 with U.S. 19 (Perry Highway), Pennsylvania 228 (Mars Road), and the Pennsylvania Turnpike (Interstate 76). A direct freeway connector opened between Interstates 76 and 79 on October 15, 2004 to replace the surface street connection. Photo taken 10/01.
1.50-mile guide sign for Exit 78 and the Cranberry Connector featuring Interstate 76 and the Pennsylvania Turnpike control cities of Harrisburg and Youngstown. Interstate 76 follows all of the Pennsylvania Turnpike from the Ohio Turnpike gateway eastward to the Schuylkill Expressway at King of Prussia. Interstate 76 bypasses Pittsburgh to the north between Cranberry and New Stanton (Interstate 70). Photo taken 10/01.
Southbound Interstate 79 at the original configuration of Exit 78 to Interstate 76, the Pennsylvania Turnpike, U.S. 19 (Perry Highway), and Pennsylvania 228 (Mars Road). This was how the Cranberry Connector was before construction of the limited access facility between Interstates 70 & 79. That connection mandated that travelers use Pennsylvania 228 to connect between Interstates 76 and 79. Collector/distributor lanes now join Interstate 79 with Pennsylvania 228 (Mars Road) independent of movements to the Pennsylvania Turnpike. Photo taken 10/01.
Diagrammatic overhead for the split of Interstate 279 southbound from Interstate 79 south at Exit 72. Interstate 279 provides an urban loop into downtown Pittsburgh from Interstate 79 which bypasses the city to the west. The designations of Interstate 79 & 279 were flip flopped originally. Photo taken 10/08/01.
Drawing to within one half mile of the Interstate 279 southbound beginning. Interstate 279 serves the northern suburbs of Pittsburgh such as West View, Ben Avon Heights, and Evergreen. The freeway enters the city limits of Pittsburgh nine miles to the south at U.S. 19 Truck (McKnight Road). Photo taken 10/08/01.
A left-hand off-ramp carries Interstate 279 southbound from Interstate 79 at the wye interchange at Exit 72. Rochester Road travels overhead at Franklin Park. Interstate 79 stays well west of Pittsburgh through Glenfield, Carnegie, and Bridgeville. Interstate 279 meanwhile skirts around downtown Pittsburgh via the Fort Duquesne Bridge and Fort Pitt Bridges to the north and west. The loop returns to Interstate 79 at Exit 59. Photo taken 10/08/01.
Interstate 79 scenes
Interstate 79 & 90 Pennsylvania trailblazers posted along Pennsylvania 5 (12th Street) eastbound within the city of Erie. Pennsylvania 5 ties into the northern terminus of Interstate 79 (Exit 182) to the west of downtown. Interstate 79 travels three miles south from there to Interstate 90. Photo taken 10/07/01.

Page Updated February 25, 2005.

© AARoads