US 29 in Virginia

 

US 29
Begin Danville
End Arlington
Length 248 mi
Length 399 km
Route
North Carolina

South Danville

East Danville

North Danville

Blair’s

Chatham

Gretna

High view

South Lynchburg

Downtown Lynchburg

East Lynchburg

Appomattox

Madison Heights

Monroe

Amherst

Lovingston

Charlottesville

Ruckersville

Culpeper

Warrenton

Gainesville

Centreville

Fairfax

Arlington

District of Columbia

According to findjobdescriptions, US 29 is a US Highway in the US state of Virginia. The road forms a major north-south route through the center of the state, from the North Carolina border through Danville, Lynchburg, and Charlottesville to the Washington, DC metropolitan area.

Travel directions

US 29 as a freeway bypass of Lynchburg.

De US 29 in Charlottesville.

Southern Virginia

US 29 in North Carolina comes from Greensboro as a freeway. The interchange with US 58 is virtually on the border between North Carolina and Virginia. US 29 then forms a freeway bypass of the city of Danville, partly double-numbered with US 58. The highway has 2×2 lanes and crosses the Dan River. The freeway portion ends some distance north of Danville. The US 29 then forms a 2×2 divided highway with regular grade-separated connections up to Lynchburg. This route leads through slightly hilly area with an alternation of forests and meadows. No other major roads cross between Danville and Lynchburg.

Lynchburg is quite unique that a small town like this has two freeway bypasses, both numbered US 29. The main route takes the outer bypass and is double-numbered with US 460, the business loop of US 29 forms the city highway through Lynchburg. Both freeways have a bridge over the James River. The main route of US 29 has a fairly long freeway stretch to the north side of Amherst.

North of Amherst, US 29 runs as a 2×2 divided highway along the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. The road has some height differences and bypasses the larger villages. On the south side of Charlottesville, a cloverleaf trail follows Interstate 64.

Northern Virginia

US 29 in Gainesville, a Washington suburb.

Around Charlottesville is a partial bypass as a freeway, which also coincides with US 250. This allows the city center to be bypassed. Thereafter, US 29 forms a major urban arterial between Charlottesville and the Charlottesville-Albemarle Airport. This is one of the widest non-city urban arterials in the United States, with some 5 lanes in each direction. Further north, US 29 is again a regular 2×2 divided highway, parallel to the Blue Ridge Mountains. US 29 bends slightly to the northeast.

This is followed by a highway-like bypass of Culpeper, over which US 15 also runs. The US 29 and US 15 then have a longer double numbering until Warrenton, this section is also a 2×2 divided highway. At Warrenton, US 29 turns northeast, reaching the western suburbs of Washington, DC. In the suburb of Gainesville, it intersects with Interstate 66.

US 29 then travels about 50 kilometers through the western suburbs of Washington, mostly a short distance parallel to I-66. The road has mostly 2×2 to 2×3 lanes and passes through satellite towns such as Centerville, Fairfax and Falls Church. US 29 also crosses Interstate 495, but only provides access to the express lanes. The final stretch is completed through the city of Arlington, before crossing the Potomac River via the Francis Scott Key Bridge to Washington, DC The US 29 in Washington, DC then cuts through downtown.

History

According to indexdotcom, US 29 is one of the original US Highways of 1926, but at the time it ran no further north than Kings Mountain, North Carolina. In 1932 the first extension followed north to US 15 in Culpeper, Virginia. In 1934 a second extension followed, to Baltimore, making the entire route through Virginia.

US 29 has been widened in its entirety to 2×2 lanes, on some stretches even more. A number of bypasses have also been designed as freeways. US 29 remained an important corridor for interregional traffic, with I-81 too far west and I-95 too far east to properly serve central Virginia. In the suburbs of Washington, DC, however, US 29 has not been extended beyond a wider urban arterial because Interstate 66 has been constructed parallel to US 29 a short distance away.

US 29 is also the shortest route between Atlanta/Charlotte and Washington, D.C. It is about 15 miles shorter than I-85 and I-95 and 60 miles shorter than I-77 and I-81. However, US 29 is not the fastest route due to its lower speed limit and greater numbers of intersections.

Danville – Lynchburg

The Danville Bypass was originally developed as State Route 265. Its first section opened in 1982, between the North Carolina border and just before the Dan River. In 1986 it was extended to State Route 73 and in 1988 to US 58, opening the entire southern bypass of Danville. It wasn’t part of US 29 yet, though, as it wasn’t until 1998, when the stretch of freeway between US 58 and old US 29 opened north of Blairs, making the Danville bypass twice as long. In 2005, Danville’s southwest bypass opened, which also led US 58 across Danville’s south ring.

About 1974-1975, the combined bypass of Gretna and Altavista opened to traffic. The bypasses of both places are built as a freeway, but the intermediate part has several intersections. In 1978, the entire route between Danville and Lynchburg was widened to a minimum of 2×2 lanes.

Lynchburg – Charlottesville

US 29 between Lynchburg and Charlottesville.

As early as the 1950s, US 29 in Lynchburg was replaced by a new expressway, one of the oldest stretches of highway in Virginia outside the Washington area. Already in 1955 the first part of the so-called Lynchburg Expressway opened over the James River. By 1959 the Lynchburg Expressway was already completed. The old route then became US 29 Alternate.

In 1969, the Amherst bypass opened as a freeway. The old route then became the US 29 Business Loop. A second bypass of Lynchburg was later developed, originally planned only as US 460. The first part of this opened in 1989, but it would take longer before US 29 was also routed over it, as this was dependent on the construction of an approximately 20 kilometer long section of freeway between US 460 and Amherst, which in opened in October 2005. US 29 was then routed over the outer bypass of Lynchburg, after which the old Lynchburg Expressway was renamed as a Business Loop of US 29. This created two parallel routes of US 29 between Lynchburg and Amherst, the main route and the business route..

From the second half of the 1960s, the entire stretch from Amherst to Charlottesville has been widened integrally into a 2×2 divided highway . By 1980, the entire US 29 had 2×2 lanes here.

Charlottesville – Culpeper – Warrenton

The section between Charlottesville and Culpeper was already started in the 1950s. By the late 1950s, quite large parts of US 29 on this stretch had already been widened into a 2×2 divided highway. In 1966, Charlottesville’s western bypass opened to traffic. Originally, there were plans for a larger-scale western bypass of Charlottesville, which would connect to the old route further north. The corridor north of Charlottesville is very busy. These plans have been discontinued after decades of planning due to problems with environmental requirements. In 2013, the existing US 29 was therefore further widened, partly to 4 to 5 lanes in each direction.

The Madison Bypass opened in 1962, and the Culpeper Bypass opened to traffic in 1973. The Culpeper bypass originally had 4 grade-separated intersections and one intersection with State Route 666. This was replaced in 2017 by a grade-separated junction, making the entire Culpeper bypass grade grade. A space reservation has also been made in the past for a connection at Brandy Station, just northeast of Culpeper, which would extend the freeway segment for a while.

Washington suburbs

De Francis Scott Key Bridge over de Potomac River.

In northern Virginia, the section between Warrenton and Washington, DC was part of the historic Lee Highway, an auto trailfrom 1919. The first section of US 29 to be upgraded was between Fairfax and the Manassas National Battlefield Park, a 22-kilometer stretch that was widened to 4 lanes as early as the 1940s, before large-scale suburbanization in this region. In the early to mid-1950s, the entire stretch from Warreneton to Manassas National Battlefield Park was widened to 4 lanes, so that basically the entire route from Warrenton to Washington, DC had already been upgraded. In the 1990s, several parts of the suburbs were upgraded due to increasing suburbanization west of Washington, especially between Centerville and Fairfax, which features a few grade separated intersections. With the conversion of I-495 by Northern Virginia in 2012, there is also an entrance and exit to the express lanesconstructed. In 2015, a section of grade separated floors with 2×3 lanes was built in Gainesville.

US 29 in Virginia