Interstate 264

This bypass of Louisville was basically built in two sections. Originally, it was built as US 60 from Dixie Highway around to Shelbyville Road in the 1950s, and I believe it was Kentucky's first limited-access highway. When the interstate system was built, the route was signed as I-264, and it offered connections with I-71, I-64 east, and I-65 (the Kentucky Turnpike). It was named the Watterson Expressway in honor of famous Louisville newspaper editor Henry Watterson. The western section, from Dixie Highway to I-64 west, was built later and is sometimes called the Shawnee Expressway. In the late 1980s, the US 60 designation was removed from the Watterson and routed through downtown again, leaving only the I-264 signage. During the 1990s, the Watterson has undergone a facelift. The 1950's-vintage freeway was completely upgraded to modern standards and widened. Now it provides a fast and safe, if sometimes crowded, bypass around Louisville with interchanges at most major intersecting roads. The western section from I-64 to I-65 is the preferred through route for I-64 east to I-65 south traffic, or for I-65 north to I-64 west traffic.

I-64 / US 150 East

Exit 0A

Louisville
Lexington

 

I-64 / US 150 West

Exit 0B

New Albany
St. Louis

 

I-64 runs from St. Louis to Norfolk, linking Evansville, Louisville, Lexington, Ashland-Huntington, Charleston and Richmond. West of this exit, it crosses the Ohio River on the Sherman Minton Bridge into Indiana. To the east, it runs along the river and serves downtown Louisville. I-264 provides a bypass around downtown, although traffic on the Watterson can be as bad as traffic on I-64. I-64 intersects the Watterson again on the east side of town.

Exit 1

Bank Street
N W Parkway

This partial exit allows access only from eastbound I-264, and allows entry only to westbound I-264. All traffic entering the Watterson here must exit onto I-64.

Exit 2

River Park Dr.
Muhammed Ali Blvd.
River Park Dr.
Muhammed Ali Blvd.

Exit 2

This exit provides access to the west side of Louisville, as well as downtown. US 31W, US 60, and US 150 (Broadway) are easily reached from here, as well.

Exit 3

Dumesnil St.
Virginia Ave.
Dumesnil St.
Virginia Ave.

Exit 3

 This exit also provides eaxy access to the west side of Louisville,and to downtown. Part of Dumesnil Street east of this exit actually becomes US 31W for a short distance.

Exit 4

Bells Ln.
Bells Ln.
Algonquin Pkwy.

Exit 4

 This route is KY 2056, but the notation is not made on the exit signs.

Exit 5A

Cane Run Rd. North
Ralph Ave.
Cane Run Rd.
Ralph Ave.

Exit 5

Exit 5B

Cane Run Rd. South

 

 This is KY 1934, but you won't see that on the exit signs. Cane Run Road is a major north-south street in the western part of Jefferson County.

Exit 8A

US 31W South / US 60 West (Dixie Hwy.)
US 31W South / US 60 West (Dixie Hwy.)

Exit 8A

 

Ft. Knox
Ft. Knox

 

Exit 8B

US 31W North / US 60 East (Dixie Hwy.)
US 31W North / US 60 East (Dixie Hwy.)

Exit 8B

 

Shively
Shively

 

 This busy route brings traffic from southwestern Jefferson County, and outlying areas of Meade and Hardin counties. At this point, US 60 used to join the Watterson Expressway and run east to Shelbyville Road, but several years ago, the US 60 designation was removed and rerouted through downtown. Exit 8A goes to Fort Knox, where the routes split. US 31W continues south to Radcliff and Elizabethtown, while US 60 turns west toward Brandenburg, Irvington, Hardinsburg, Hawesville, and Owensboro.

Exit 9

KY 1865
KY 1865

Exit 9

 

Taylor Blvd.
Taylor Blvd.

 

Churchill Downs
Kentucky Derby Museum
Next 2 Exits

 

This exit takes eastbound traffic to the home of the Twin Spires and America's most famous horse race, since Churchill Downs lies between Taylor Blvd. and Southern Parkway. This route ends just north of this exit at Alternate US 60.

Exit 10

KY 1020
KY 1020

Exit 10

 

Southern Parkway
Third Street
Southern Parkway
Third Street

 

 

Churchill Downs
Kentucky Derby Museum
Next 2 Exits

The westbound exit for Churchill Downs.

Exit 11

Crittenden Drive
Crittenden Drive

Exit 11

 

Airport
Fair/Expo Center
Gates 2-3-4
Airport
Fair/Expo Center

 

 Kentucky Kingdom
Kentucky Kingdom

 This exit is the main exit for Louisville's airport (which I've always known as Standiford Field, but which has recently changed its name to Louisville International Airport or something like that), and also for the Kentucky Fair and Exposition Center. Located at KFEC are Freedom Hall and the Kentucky Kingdom amusement park.

Exit 12

I-65 / To KY 61
I-65 / KY 61

Exit 12

 

Nashville
Indianapolis
Nashville
Indianapolis

 

Fair/Expo Center
Downtown Louisville
Preston Hwy.
Downtown Louisville

I-65 links Chicago with Mobile, serving Indianapolis, Louisville, Nashville and Birmingham in between. It offers several exits for downtown Louisville before crossing the Ohio River into Indiana. Southbound, I-65 passes Shepherdsville, Elizabethtown and Bowling Green before entering Tennessee. Its link with the Western Kentucky Parkway offers access to the Paducah area. KY 61 (Preston Highway) parallels the interstate from Louisville to Elizabethtown before turning to the southeast to pass through Hodgenville, Greenville, Columbia and Burkesville in the south-central part of Kentucky.

Exit 14

KY 864 (Poplar Level Road)
KY 864 (Poplar Level Road)

Exit 14

 

Louisville Zoo
Louisville Zoo

 

The zoo is located north of the Watterson. KY 864 intersects most major east-west highways between I-264 and I-265.

Exit 15

KY 1703 (Newburg Road)
KY 1703 (Newburg Road) North

Exit 15A

 

Bellarmine College
Bellarmine College

 

 

KY 1703 (Newburg Road) South

Exit 15B

This route runs from a northwest-to-southeast direction, connecting Bardstown Road and Old Shepherdsville Road.

Exit 16

US 31E / US 150 (Bardstown Road)
US 31E / US 150 (Bardstown Road)

Exit 16

 

Sullivan College
Sullivan College

 

Farmington
Farmington

This route brings traffic from Mt. Washington and Bardstown. At Bardstown, the two routes split. US 31E provides a leisurely route south through a mostly-rural setting, passing through Hodgenville, Glasgow and Scottsville before entering Tennessee. US 150 is a high-volume route that cuts through central Kentucky from northwest to southeast. After leaving Bardstown, it serves Springfield, Danville and Stanford before ending at Mt. Vernon. Many sections of US 150 are scheduled to be improved in future years to bring it up to modern standards. When this happens, it will become a shortcut from Louisville to I-75, and will give traffic a more direct route and an opportunity to avoid Lexington.

Exit 17A

KY 155 (Taylorsville Road) South
KY 155 (Taylorsville Road) South

Exit 17A

 

Jeffersontown
Jeffersontown

 

Exit 17B

KY 155 (Taylorsville Road) North
KY 155 (Taylorsville Road) North

Exit 17B

KY 155 is an improved road to serve the rapidly-growing Taylorsville and Spencer County area. J-town and I-265 lie between the Watterson and Taylorsville.

Exit 18A

KY 1932 (Breckenridge Lane) South
KY 1932 (Breckenridge Lane) South

Exit 18A

Exit 18B

KY 1932 (Breckenridge Lane) North
KY 1932 (Breckenridge Lane) North

Exit 18B

"Breckenridge" or "Breckinridge?" That's a question that is often asked. You'll see it spelled both ways. A Louisville Courier-Journal column once discussed the spelling difference, but I forget what it said. Anyway, this route connects US 42 (Brownsboro Road), US 60 (Shelbyville Road), I-265, and US 31E / US 150 (Bardstown Road).

Exit 19A

I-64 East
I-64 East

Exit 19A

 

Lexington
Lexington

 

Exit 19B

I-64 West
I-64 West

Exit 19B

 

Louisville
Louisville

 

 

NOTE: Westbound traffic on I-264 must use Exit 20 to access the I-64 ramps at Exit 19.

The second interchange between I-264 and I-64 was recently rebuilt to handle the heavy volume of traffic. Taking I-64 westbound offers access to Cannons Lane, Grinstead Drive, Mellwood Avenue, and I-65. I-64 east leads to Shelbyville, Frankfort, Lexington, and on into eastern Kentucky and eventually Virginia.

Exit 20A

US 60 (Shelbyville Road) East
US 60 (Shelbyville Road) West

Exit 20A

 

Middletown
Middletown

 

Exit 20B

US 60 (Shelbyville Road) West
US 60 (Shelbyville Road) West

Exit 20B

 

St. Mathews
St. Mathews

 

 

NOTE: Westbound traffic on I-264 must use Exit 20 to access the I-64 ramps at Exit 19.

Years ago, this was the point where US 60 left the Watterson when US 60 was co-signed with I-264. Shelbyville Road westbound continued as Business US 60 (and US 460, until that road was decertified west of Frankfort in the early 1970s). Two major shopping malls are located at this exit. Access is also available to KY 146, LaGrange Road, which serves several Oldham County towns. Eastbound US 60 parallels I-64 all the way to Charleston, W. Va., from this point.

Exit 22

US 42 (Brownsboro Road)
US 42 (Brownsboro Road)

Exit 22

 

Prospect

 

 

US 42 is the parallel route to I-71. It serves several suburbs in northeastern Jefferson County, is the end point for the Gene Snyder Freeway, and also offers a link to KY 22, which serves Oldham and Henry counties to the east. 

 Exit 23A

 I-71 North

 

 Cincinnati

 Exit 23B

 I-71 South

 

 Louisville

I-71 is the major link between Louisville, Cincinnati, Columbus and Cleveland. Its access points to Louisville, however, are not numerous. There is only one exit (Zorn Avenue) between the Watterson and I-71's end at I-64 near downtown. I-64 and I-65 provide plenty of access points, however. Northbound, I-71 allows access only to the Gene Snyder Freeway before leaving Jefferson County. To the northeast, the route passes the Oldham County bedroom communities of LaGrange, Buckner, Pewee Valley, and also allows access to New Castle, Eminence, Carrollton, Owenton and Warsaw before it joins I-75 north toward Cincinnati. 

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This page created June 10, 1998
Last modified Oct. 27, 1999
© 1998, H.B. Elkins