Indiana Roads - I-74/465/US 31/36/40/SR 37
The "friends" are US 31, US 36, US 40, SR 37, and SR 67. US 52 and 421 would be the kitchen sink, but they're never on I-465 at the same time as I-74 - US 421 comes in with 74 from the southeast and then they split. None of these routes are signed while on the beltway, so drivers have to stay observant to see where their route gets off. At least you can't get too lost by driving in a circle.
Heading west from I-65, where the button copy and exit numbers begin, until US 31 drops from the highway. I-74 follows I-465's exit numbering "against the grain" (i.e., increasing WB) for beltway continuity.
Between this 1979 photo, courtesy Michael Summa, and the present day seen in the previous run, US 31 and SR 37 were taken out of Indianapolis and unofficially routed along the beltway. Obviously, even the button copy signs have been replaced (the exit tabs back then were centered), but it explains why the Exit 2A signs aren't button copy at all - US 31 was the last route removed from the city.
In the first photo, Meridian St. has a blank space above it because the road was once SR 135, a route that extended inside the beltway before terminating at US 31 well south of downtown.
WB until it turns NB right around the I-70 interchange, losing SR 67, then up that ramp. Unlike the EB/SB direction, I-74/465 WB/NB has a single ramp to I-70, so when I-70 WB gained the airport as a destination, the mainline button copy disappeared. It's also gone from here on north for several miles.
I-74 WB/I-465 NB until they part, losing US 40 at Exit 12 and US 36 at Exit 13. The best sign in this run is the first one, because whether by rearrangement due to construction or just being that old, US 40 is signed as if it still continues east into Indianapolis on Washington St. The worst is either the misarranged Exit 16 advance (but at least it's button copy) or the narrow construction shield helping traffic from Exit 14 get to I-465 SB during beltway reconstruction via the cloverleaf loops at the beginning of US 136 and the end of the I-74 concurrency. The Exit 13 sign is courtesy J.P. Nasiatka and is gone as a casualty of construction. As of 2013, the entire interchange is gone, replaced by a directional interchange between I-465 and I-74 and a new diamond just to the south to serve US 136; thus 136 no longer turns into I-74 on Crawfordsville Rd.
I-74 EB and I-465 SB. There's not a lot of button copy left due to the I-465 reconstruction on the west side of Indianapolis. The I-70 WB signs have been replaced because the airport moved its main entrance from Sam Jones Expressway (Exit 11) to a new terminal complex entered from the west side of the airport. Between Exit 14 and Exit 9, I-74/465 picked up US 36 (at Exit 13) and US 40 (at Exit 12), and they're about to get SR 67 as well.
Now both Interstates are eastbound, and the last sign is on the Exit 4 ramp where SR 37 is about to come along and join the beltway too.
Continuing EB and about to pick up one last route, US 31. Again, 31 was the last highway pulled out of Indianapolis, so by that point button copy was no longer in use, which is why all of the other exits that add routes to the beltway don't also have mixed sign types and why I squished the last photo for fun. Before Meridian St. was SR 135, SR 37 followed Bluff Rd., but that was far enough back (probably before I-465 was constructed) that there's no trace on signage.
That's all of the button copy on the multiplex, which is boring for the last four miles before I-74 breaks away (you can tell from the plain-Jane Exit 52 advance sign). Early on in this run, note that Madison Ave. was US 31 before I-465 was constructed - 31 was shifted to East St. probably due to the alignment of the nearby railroad. It also helps that Lick Creek is in the median at Exit 2 (vs. the south side of the freeway at Madison Ave.), but that's an artificial alignment anyway.
Onto I-465/US 31/36/40/SR 37 "alone"
Onto I-74 alone and WB
Back to I-74 main page
Back to I-465 main page
Exit 2 to US 31 alone
Exit 4 to SR 37 alone
Exit 9 to I-70
Exit 12 to US 40 alone
Exit 13 to US 36 alone
Exit 16A to US 136
Exit 53 to I-65
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