Building the Interstate

While looking through one of my Grandma’s Scrapbooks I ran across a series of clippings that interested me.

I really like maps and also watching the progress of road construction. This series of clippings also had a little personal touch to them.

Clearing land, Interstate 29, I-29, Hamburg, Iowa, Road ConstructionHere was the first image in the scrapbook. It shows an area where Interstate 29 will soon be built. My Grandma had also written a note on the clipping.

Right here was the house Harry and I tore down that C-O-L-D winter on Butler land ahead of the Interstate.

I also like the caption of the picture as it gives more details.

Right Through That Gate- When Interstate 29 crosses the Iowa border south of Hamburg this spring, it will go right through the gate in picture center, skimming by the old Butler Dairy barn and house, then on northwest along the west side of the Burlington tracks past Payne. These stakes are the northern limit of the Highway, and an overpass will at this point carry the highway over the tracks from east to west, and at the same time span blacktop road in foreground.

Interstate Highway System, I-29, Hamburg, Iowa, Road ConstructionMy Grandma also saved a clipping showing the overpass while it was under construction. Again she also notes that this is where the house they tore down stood.

Changing Scene- The south route out of Hamburg, virtually unchanged since the days of steamboat landings near Lewis School, will never look the same again. Here it cuts through underneath the middle of what will be  large bridge carrying traffic over the old road and the Burlington Railroad tracks. View is to the southeast and the Missouri line, where a $4.5 million paving contract will complete that portion south to near Rock Port. Steel for bridging is expected to arrive in September.

As I write this I am remembering the many times I have driven over this bridge throughout the years.

Interstate Construction, I-29, Hamburg, Iowa, Earth MoversHere is another clipping showing the preparation of the road bed.

From Hamburg, Iowa, northward the right-of-way of Interstate 29 is being build of soil taken from barrow pits along the right-of-way of the new interstate route, and in this picture is shown the huge scrapers bring loads of soil from the pits to the right-of-way and a bulldozer is being used to level the soil. The scene is near the spot where I-29 will cross the tracks of the Burlington Northern railroad near Hamburg.

This also brings back memories of seeing the barrow pits along I-29. They have really changed over the years and now just look like small lakes or ponds.

Interstate 29 Opening - Hamburg, Iowa, Omaha, Road OpeningHere was a notice that I-29 had opened.

The barricades are down and I-29 is open south to Iowa No. 2 south of Percival.

Traffic is being routed east and west on Iowa 2 after motorists leave the interstate, but local traffic has been by-passing barricades and continuing south to near Hamburg before getting off the super highway.

State highway workers completed sign work on the new super highway last week.

Signs were installed through downtown Hamburg west to the I-29 interchange where traffic will enter an depart until the Missouri portion of the interstate is complete next summer.

I am sure that some of my readers will remember this time and perhaps some of them were even by-passing the barricades.

Hamburg Iowa, Main Street, Flag Pole, I-29, Left Turn Inside PoleEvidently the signs that were put up were a little confusing. They even had to put up a sign on the iconic Hamburg Flag Pole.

Another sign–state highway crews put up yet another instruction the past week to motorists using Interstate 29. The new addition should clear up any confusion to passing motorists, but there will always be a few who still do not understand.

I was a little young when the Hamburg exit was opened, but I do remember my grandparents talking about when I-29 opened south into Missouri.

I found it really interesting that my grandparents had a tiny little role in the building of the interstate. Someone had to tear down houses that were in the way. I am sure that they salvaged as much as they could out of the house. I am just thinking, perhaps this is where they got some of the material when an addition was made to the house they lived in on Bluff Road.


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One Response to Building the Interstate

  1. How fabulous to have these snippets into the past! I’d be totally confused about the meaning of “Left turn inside pole”?!

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