Interstate 65

I-65 is a major north-south route, linking the Great Lakes to the Gulf Coast. It serves Mobile and Birmingham, Ala., Nashville, Tenn., Indianapolis, Ind., and the Chicago, Ill. area. In Kentucky, it passes Bowling Green and Elizabethtown and offers intersections with all major east-west highways crossing this section of central and west-central Kentucky. 

Milepoint 0
Rest Area
Welcome Center

Located right at the Kentucky-Tennessee state line, this welcome center greets travelers on I-65 northbound.

Exit 2

US 31W
US 31W

Exit 2

Franklin
Franklin

US 31W parallels I-65 from the state line to Elizabethtown. This exit gives access to Franklin from the south.

Milepoint 3

Weigh Station

This weigh station is for northbound commercial trafic only.

Exit 6

KY 100
KY 100

Exit 6

Franklin
Scottsville
Scottsville
Franklin

KY 100 runs roughly parallel to the Tennessee border, beginning at Russellville and ending near Burkesville. In between, it connects Franklin, Scottsville and Tompkinsville, intersecting US 68 / KY 80, US 79, US 31W, I-65, US 31E, US 231 and KY 90.

Exit 20

William H. Natcher Parkway (Toll Road)
William H. Natcher Parkway (Toll Road)

Exit 20

Bowling Green
Owensboro
Bowling Green
Owensboro

Kentucky State Police

Originally called the Bowling Green-Owensboro Parkway, this name of this route through west-central Kentucky was later changed to the Green River Parkway when it opened in December 1972. In 1994, the name of the route was changed to the William H. Natcher Parkway in honor of the Kentucky congressman from Bowling Green whose claim to fame was the longest tenure ever served in Congress without missing a vote. This highway links I-65 at Bowling Green to the US 60 bypass at Owensboro. Along with the Audubon Parkway and US 41, it provides a link to I-64 in Indiana. The route largely replaces US 231 and provides intersections with major routes which cross it, including the Western Kentucky Parkway.

Exit 22

US 231
US 231

Exit 22

Bowling Green
Scottsville
Scottsville
Bowling Green

Western Kentucky University

US 231 links Scottsville, Bowling Green, Morgantown and Owensboro, although its vitality as a through route has been replaced by the Natcher Parkway. It provides access to downtown Bowling Green and the WKU campus. Scottsville Road is the major commercial area of Bowling Green, and thus is subject to lots of traffic jams between I-65 and US 31W.

Exit 28

To US 31W / KY 446
To US 31W / KY 446

Exit 28

Bowling Green
Bowling Green

Western Kentucky University
National Corvette Museum

Beech Bend Park
National Corvette Museum

Bowling Green
Next 3 Exits

This short four-lane highway links I-65 to US 31W on the north side of Bowling Green.

Rest Area

Milepoint 30

This rest area serves only southbound traffic.

Exit 36
US 68 / KY 80

Oakland

This exit provides access to US 68 / KY 80 only northbound, and only southbound I-65 can be entered. The KY 80 corridor is a major east-west route across southern Kentucky, but between Bowling Green and Somerset it has been supplanted by the Cumberland Parkway.

Exit 38

KY 101
KY 101 /US 68

Exit 38

Smith's Grove
Scottsville
Smith's Grove

Nolin Lake Reservoir

From the Department of Redundancy Department: The "Nolin Lake Reservoir" sign at this exit. KY 101 runs from Scottsville north, ending at KY 259 which gives access to Brownsville and Leitchfield. Southbound, this exit gives access to US 68 and KY 80 which is not available at Exit 36.

Milepoint 39

Rest Area

This rest area serves northbound traffic.

Exit 43

Cumberland Parkway (Toll Road)
Cumberland Parkway (Toll Road)

Exit 43

Glasgow
Somerset
Glasgow
Somerset

Barren River Lake State Resort Park
Barren River Lake State Resort Park

The Cumberland Parkway is part of a corridor designed to speed traffic across the southern tier of Kentucky counties. Picking up US 68 / KY 80 traffic via I-65 at Bowling Green, the parkway parallels KY 80 to Somerset, where KY 80 again picks up the route to London and I-75. From there, the Daniel Boone Parkway runs to Hazard, and KY 80 picks up the route and runs to the Big Sandy River area of extreme eastern Kentucky. Interchanges serve each town along the Cumberland Parkway's route, which include Scottsville, Edmonton, Columbia, Jamestown and Russell Springs. The Cumberland Parkway was built in the mid 1970s, but was the brainchild of Gov. Louie B. Nunn, who served from 1967 to 1971. A Republican from Glasgow (one of the towns served by the route), Gov. Nunn is one of the few GOP members ever elected governor in Kentucky. He envisioned a modern highway to serve several counties in south-central Kentucky suffering from chronic economic woes, due in part to the lack of attention given those counties because a majority of the voters there are Republicans and thus never favored by the Democratic administrations of the past. Tolls are still charged on this route, one of the four Kentucky parkways for which the bonds have not yet been paid off.

Exit 48

KY 255
KY 255

Exit 48

Brownsville
Park City
Park City
Brownsville

Mammoth Cave National Park
Mammoth Cave National Park
Cave Area
Next 3 Exits

For northbound traffic, this is the main access point to Mammoth Cave National Park. Inside the park, KY 255 intersects KY 70.

Exit 53

KY 70 / KY 90
KY 70 / KY 90

Exit 53

Cave City
Glasgow
Cave City
Glasgow

Mammoth Cave National Park

Guntown Mountain Amusement Park
Barren River Lake State Resort Park

Mammoth Cave National Park

KY 90 ends just east of this exit and runs southeast to Glasgow, Burkesville, and then becomes Appalachian Development Corridor J and links Albany, Monticello and the Burnside-Somerset area. KY 70 cuts across the south-central part of the state and gives access to Morgantown, Brownsville and Greensburg.

Rest Area

Milepoint 55

This rest area serves southbound traffic.

Exit 58

KY 218 / To KY 335
KY 218 / To KY 335

Exit 58

Horse Cave
Horse Cave

Kentucky Down Under

American Cave Museum

Horse Cave Theatre
Kentucky Down Under

American Cave Museum

Horse Cave Theatre

KY 218 connects US 31W and US 31E, and that portion of highway used to be US 68 many years ago. This exit offers access to Horse Cave and many of the cave area attractions in this region.

Exit 65

US 31W
US 31W

Exit 65

Munfordville
Munfordville

Nolin Lake
Nolin Lake

Also accessible from this exit are KY 88 and KY 357. KY 88 westbound passes by Nolin Lake on its way to Clarkson and Leitchfield; east KY 88 intersects US 31E and eventually ends at KY 61 near Greensburg. KY 357 runs northeast to Hodgenville.

Exit 71

KY 728
KY 728

Exit 71

Bonnieville
Bonnieville

Nolin Lake is also accessible via KY 728 west, which intersects KY 88 at Cub Run and KY 259 at Bee Spring, near the Nolin dam.

Exit 76

KY 224
KY 224

Exit 76

Upton
Upton

Nolin Lake

KY 224 links Clarkson to Upton, with a partial interchange at the Western Kentucky Parkway. Access to Nolin Lake is via KY 479, which intersects KY 224 at Millerstown.

Exit 81

KY 84
KY 84

Exit 81

Sonora
Sonora

Abraham Lincoln Birth Place Natl. Historic Site

KY 84 also provides access to Hodgenville and Lebanon to the east.

Milepoint 82

Rest Area
Rest Area

Milepoint 82

Rest areas on both sides of the interstate, just north of Exit 81, serve both directions of travel.

Exit 86

KY 222
KY 222

Exit 86

Glendale
Glendale

Glendale Historic District
Glendale Historic District

KY 222 also provides access to Hodgenville, intersecting KY 84 just west of that town. Glendale is home to the annual fall Glendale Crossing Festival, celebrating the importance of the railroad in that town's history.

Milepoint 89

Weigh Station
Weigh Station

Milepoint 89

Weigh stations serve both directions of travel.

Exit 91

Western Kentucky Parkway / US 31W / KY 61
Western Kentucky Parkway / US 31W / KY 61

Exit 91

Elizabethtown
Paducah
Hodgenville
Paducah

Abraham Lincoln Birthplace Natl. Historic Site
Abraham Lincoln Birthplace Natl. Historic Site
Fort Knox
Hodgenville
Elizabethtown
Owensboro
Hopkinsville
Leitchfield

Along with the Blue Grass Parkway, the Western Kentucky Parkway provides a fast route from the far-western portion of the state to the central portion. Both the WK and BG parkways parallel US 62 from Eddyville to Versailles. Intersections with I-24, the Pennyrile Parkway, the William H. Natcher Parkway and I-65 make the WK Parkway easily accessible. At Elizabethtown, eastbound traffic on the WK Parkway can take I-65 north to Louisville, or the BG Parkway east to Lexington, where connections to I-64, I-75 and the Mountain Parkway are available. At 137 miles, the WK Parkway is the longest of Kentucky's current or former toll roads. Tolls were removed in the late 1980s.

Exit 93

Blue Grass Parkway
Blue Grass Parkway

Exit 93

Bardstown
Lexington
Bardstown
Lexington

Makers Mark Distillery National Landmark

My Old Kentucky Home State Shrine

Stephen Foster-The Musical
My Old Kentucky Home State Park

Stephen Foster-The Musical

Build in the mid 1960s, the Blue Grass Parkway is a vital link across central Kentucky. It parallels US 62 from Elizabethtown to Versailles. Along with the Western Kentucky Parkway, it offers a southwest-to-northeast corridor across the middle of the state. Collecting traffic from I-65 (Nashville, Bowling Green) and the Western Kentucky Parkway (Madisonville, Hopkinsville, Paducah), the Blue Grass Parkway connects I-65 to US 60. Although the parkway ends at US 60 in Woodford County, traffic can use US 60 east to access Lexington, and I-64 and I-75.

Exit 94

US 62 / KY 61
US 62 / KY 61

Exit 94

Elizabethtown
Elizabethtown

US 62 gives access to downtown Elizabethtown. KY 61 is multiplexed from Boston to US 31W.

Exit 102

KY 313 (Joe Prather Highway)
KY 313 (Joe Prather Highway)

Exit 102

Radcliff
Vine Grove
Radcliff
Vine Grove

Fort Knox
Fort Knox
Patton Museum
Patton Museum

This new connector highway is meant to ease some traffic on US 31W and to allow better access from western Hardin and Meade counties to the interstate. KY 313 intersects US 31W about halfway between Elizabethtown and Radcliff, and also offers access to Vine Grove (home of former State Rep. Joe Prather, for whom the highway is named) and Brandenburg.

Exit 105

KY 61
KY 61

Exit 105

Lebanon Jct.
Boston
Boston
Lebanon Jct.

Bardstown Area

Makers Mark Distillery National Landmark

Lebanon Junction is so named because it is the location where the old spur railroad track off the Louisville & Nashville (L&N) Railroad, which served Lebanon, joined the main line. KY 61 intersects US 62 at Boston, and from there KY 52 leads to the Blue Grass Parkway and the Makers Mark Distillery.

Exit 112

KY 245
KY 245

Exit 112

Clermont
Bardstown
Clermont
Bardstown

Bernheim Forest
Bernheim Forest

My Old Kentucky Home State Park

The Stephen Foster Story

KY 245 is an improved road which intersects US 31E / US 150 north of Bardstown, and US 150 and the Blue Grass Parkway east of town. The combination of KY 245 and US 150 provide good access to Springfield, Danville, Stanford and I-75 at Mt. Vernon.

Rest Area
Welcome Center

Milepoint 113

This rest area serves as the welcome center for southbound I-65 traffic, even though it's located more than 20 miles south of the Indiana border.

Exit 116

KY 480 / To KY 61
KY 480 / To KY 61

Exit 116

This exit, just south of the bridge across the Salt River, gives access to the south side of Shepherdsville. KY 480 east connects with US 31E/US 150 at Highgrove, and from there, KY 48 connects with US 62 and KY 55 at Bloomfield. Personally, I think KY 480 should be renumbered as KY 48.

Exit 117

KY 44
KY 44

Exit 117

Shepherdsville
Mt. Washington
Mt. Washington
Shepherdsville

Shepherdsville used to be a sleepy small town on the banks of the Salt River. the county seat of Bullitt County, until Louisville and Jefferson County instituted forced busing of school students in the early 1970s. This led many Jefferson Countians to move to Bullitt County, and Shepherdville experienced a major growth spurt. The court-ordered busing, along with the Louisville metro area's growth as a business and economic center, have helped fuel growth in Shepherdsville and other Bullitt County communities. To the west, KY 44 skirts the Fort Knox Military Reservation before ending at US 31W / US 60. To the east, it travels through Mt. Washington, Taylorsville and the Taylorsville Lake region before ending at Lawrenceburg. This exit was one of the original exits on the old Kentucky Turnpike and the location of a toll plaza.

Exit 121

KY 1526
KY 1526

Exit 121

Brooks Road
Brooks Road

Pioneer Village
Hillview
Pioneer Village
Hillview

This exit was added when I-65 was reconstructed following the removal of tolls from the Kentucky Turnpike, to serve the rapidly-growing area of northern Bullitt County. Pioneer Village and Hillview are two recently-incorporated cities (one of them -- I forget which -- used to be known as a subdivision called Maryville before it incorporated as a city).

 

Exit 125A

I-265 / KY 841 East
I-265 / KY 841

Exit 125

 

Gene Snyder Freeway
Gene Snyder Freeway

 

To I-64 / To I-71
Lexington
Cincinnati

Exit 125B

KY 841 West

 

Gene Snyder Freeway

 I-265, the Gene Snyder Freeway, began life as KY 841, the Jefferson Freeway. Originally, only two short segments were built -- between KY 155 and US 60, and between KY 22 and US 42. In the 1980s, however, the entire route was completed. At that time, the portion between I-65 and I-71 was designated I-265, although exit numbering begins at the western terminus of KY 841. This route is not to be confused with Indiana's I-265, because there is no link between the two routes. When (hopefully soon) the East End Bridge is built across the Ohio River, the two I-265 segments will be joined and a complete bypass around northern Louisville will be available. It offers intersections with all major routes entering Louisville, and gives a good bypass for northbound I-65 traffic heading for eastbound I-64 or northbound I-71, allowing this traffic to bypass downtown Louisville and the busy Watterson Expressway (I-264.)

Exit 127

KY 1065 (Outer Loop)
KY 1065 (Outer Loop)

Exit 127

 

Okolona
Fairdale
Okolona
Fairdale

 

Louisville Motor Speedway
Louisville Motor Speedway

 The Outer Loop is something of a surface arterial bypass of southern Louisville. It connects I-65, KY 61 (Preston Highway) and US 31E/150. The Outer Loop exit on the old Kentucky Turnpike had toll ramps.

Exit 128

KY 1631
KY 1631

Exit 128

 

Fern Valley Rd.
Fern Valley Rd.

 

This exit allows access to southern parts of Louisville, and also gives access to KY 61. The Fern Valley exit on the old Kentucky Turnpike had toll ramps.

Exit 130

To KY 61
To KY 61

Exit 130

 

Preston Hwy.
Grade Lane
Preston Hwy.
Grade Lane

 

Kentucky Air National Guard General Aviation Area
Kentucky Air National Guard General Aviation Area

 This exit allows full access to KY 61, south of the Watterson Expressway. The southbound exit replaced a left exit ramp.

Exit 131A

I-264 East
I-264 East

Exit 131A

 

Watterson Expressway
Watterson Expressway

 

Airport

 

Exit 131B

I-264 West
I-264 West

Exit 131B

 

Watterson Expressway
Watterson Expressway

 

Fair/Expo Center
Airport
Fair/Expo Center

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. It offers intersections with all major routes leading into downtown Louisville.

 

Crittenden Drive

Exit 132

Fair / Expo Center
Gates 2-3-4

 

Kentucky Kingdom

 This southbound-only exit gives good access to the Kentucky Fair and Exposition Center (Freedom Hall) and the Kentucky Kingdom amusement park. It keeps traffic from having to negotiate the ramps at the Watterson Expressway interchange.

Exit 133A

Alt. US 60 (Eastern Parkway) East
Alt. US 60 (Eastern Parkway)

Exit 133

 

Churchill Downs
Kentucky Derby Museum

 

Exit 133B

Alt. US 60 (Eastern Parkway) West

 

 

University of Louisville
J.B. Speed Art Museum

Alternate US 60 is signed from Dixie Highway at Shively to Frankfort Avenue at St. Mathews. It traverses surface streets including Berry Blvd., Taylor Blvd, Eastern Parkway and other routes.

Exit 134A

KY 61 North
KY 61 South

Exit 134

 

Jackson Street
Arthur Street

 

 

University of Louisville
J.B. Speed Art Museum
Next 2 Exits

Exit 134B

Woodbine Street

 

 Exits here allow I-65 traffic to access KY 61, and vice versa.

Exit 135

St. Catherine West
St. Catherine West

Exit 135

Spalding University
Spalding University

 

Old Louisville
Old Louisville

 This is the first exit providing direct downtown access to Louisville.

Exit 136A

Broadway
Chestnut St.
Jefferson St.

Exit 136C

 

Louisville Medical Center

Jefferson Community College
Downtown

 

Downtown Louisville
Next 3 Exits

Louisville Gardens


Commonwealth Convention Center

Louisville Medical Center

Jefferson Community College

Exit 136B

Brook St.

 

Exit 136C

Muhammad Ali Blvd.

These exits provide access to the main downtown area of Louisville. Broadway is US 150; it and Chestnut, Muhammad Ali and Jefferson are major east-west streets. Brook Street is north-south, I believe.

Exit 137

I-64 / I-71
I-71 / I-64

Exit 137

 

St. Louis
Cincinnati
Lexington
Cincinnati
Lexington
St. Louis
Louisville

 

I-64 cuts across the north-central part of Kentucky, entering the state at Louisville. It begins at St. Louis and brings traffic from that city and Evansville across southern Illinois and Indiana. After entering Kentucky, it goes by the state capital city, Frankfort, before skirting the north side of Lexington. At Winchester, the route turns to the northeast. I-64 exits Kentucky south of Ashland and serves Huntington, Charleston and Beckley, W. Va., and Lexington, Charlottesville and Richmond, Va., before coming to an end in the Tidewater area of the Old Dominion State. Among the major routes I-64 intersects are I-44, I-55 and I-70 in Missouri, I-57 in Illinois, I-77 and I-79 in West Virginia, and I-81 and I-95 in Virginia. In Kentucky, I-64 intersects I-65, I-71, US 127, I-75, the Mountain Parkway, US 460 and US 23. Access to downtown Louisville is available via several exits on westbound I-64.

 I-71 is the major link between Louisville, Cincinnati, Columbus and Cleveland, and this is its southern terminus. I-71 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 Oct. 27, 1999
Last modified Oct. 27, 1999
© 1999, H.B. Elkins