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Downtown Map, 1966


Subdude

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"US 59" just means that it is US highway 59, which doesn't have a design standard - a US highway can just be a two lane road, especially in rural areas.  What I think is more interesting is the I-45 designation on those surface streets, even though they were definitely not up to Interstate standards.  Probably has to do with the fact that the Gulf freeway predates the Interstate highway system, but was added to it for I-45.

 

Where US 59 was before it was turned into a freeway all the way through Houston means that they probably put it where it is to bypass the core of downtown - I mean this map of downtown doesn't even show where US 59 is now

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Well, remember, original U.S. highways were supposed to go through downtowns. Interstates were not, which is why I-45, I-10, and US-59 form a "diamond" around downtown instead of going through it (the growth of downtown-like growth since notwithstanding). This is also why small towns built along U.S. highways that were bypassed by Interstates started to whither up after the 1960s.

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"US 59" just means that it is US highway 59, which doesn't have a design standard - a US highway can just be a two lane road, especially in rural areas.  What I think is more interesting is the I-45 designation on those surface streets, even though they were definitely not up to Interstate standards.  Probably has to do with the fact that the Gulf freeway predates the Interstate highway system, but was added to it for I-45.

 

Where US 59 was before it was turned into a freeway all the way through Houston means that they probably put it where it is to bypass the core of downtown - I mean this map of downtown doesn't even show where US 59 is now

 

That's not where 59 was originally, though - its western branch came in through downtown on Main, and followed Main and Fannin all the way to the intersection with the 59 eastern branch and 90A at OST, then followed 90A's current route to Rosenberg.

 

https://1968d90e831cd27d2017897e0c81e9a12852eb10.googledrive.com/host/0B4gwdXQk1LyieHZHSTBqd0VJSnc/old-highway-maps/1950_humble_houston_large.jpg

 

The route here was adopted to direct traffic to the Southwest Freeway via what is now Spur 527.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I know we didn't have as many freeways in Houston in the 1960's but I sure liked driving around in Houston better then than I do now. To tell the truth, I liked the whole city better then. If you were on the streets regularly you knew the streets that had the traffic problems and which ones to avoid.

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