The Question of Interstate 69

Next American City reviews a new book by Matt Dellinger about Interstate 69, the as-yet-unbuilt highway that could create a direct link between the Mexican and Canadian borders.

Seen as both an opportunity for economic development and the further ruination of the country with large-scale car-focused infrastructure, Interstate 69 is still very much an unanswered question.

"Dellinger places the highway's development alongside the personal narratives of the actors working faithfully to build it-or, on the other hand, to stop it before it is completed. The highway, it becomes quickly apparent, is far more than just a way to get from one place to the next: It embodies a conflict over growth, progress, even destiny.

If completed, I-69 would connect Detroit with Indianapolis, Memphis, Shreveport, and Houston in a straight-shot diagonal across the nation. The section between Indiana's capital and the Canadian border was completed in the 1950s, but most of the rest of the route isn't even funded; only two small sections, one in Indiana and the other in Mississippi, have been completed. It would be the last traditional Interstate highway to be built. But its fate has yet to be sealed: Its arguably duplicative route between areas that, with the exception of Texas, aren't growing in population, has attracted serious criticism in some parts."

Full Story: Driven Over by I-69

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