Interstate 10 in Arizona
With it's population at the 1950's census putting the city over 100k people, it was deemed appropriate for Phoenix to get an Interstate connection. With three major US Highways already passing through the city on their way to either coast (US 60, 70 and 80), a preemptive plan would have put the freeway directly over the old routes, something that the city did not want as it would disrupt downtown. It was also to be built above ground, dividing the city. Freeway revolts ensued, with the freeway ending near Phoenix's western city limit and the route taking a temporary route (marked TO I-10, along with US 80) to connect with the North/South running Black Canyon Freeway (then SR 69, now I-17), just before the Durango Curve, where it turned East/West and became the Maricopa Freeway.
Outside Chandler, the road heads Northwest/Southeast, until the Casa Grande Interchange where I-10 meets I-8. Continuing on a more direct path, the road begins it's descent to Tucson. The road straightens after I-19 branches off near Tucson, and takes some long, sweeping curves while passing through the eastern edges of the Sonoran Desert. It crosses over into New Mexico at San Simon where it continues on it's trek to Orlando, Florida.
Modern I-10 now runs along the Papago and Inner Loop Freeway(s) through Downtown Phoenix, both built below grade. It also encompasses the Deck Park Tunnel, a joint effort from ADOT and the city of Phoenix to keep the freeway from dividing the community. This section was the last to open along I-10 in it's entirety, opening to the public in 1990.
The Travel Logs.