In 1994, the Federal Government identified a network of important regional routes as the National Highway System, or NHS. These routes can range from cross-country interstate highways to short connecting two-lane routes.

NHS routes are eligible for 80/20 funding (80% federal funds matching 20% state funds). The guidelines are more flexible than those for interstate funding: funds can be applied to transit, ridesharing, or other transportation projects in the corridor.

For more NHS information, see the Public Roads Spring 1996 issue, or Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) information.

Highway List

Connecticut's highways in the National Highway System are:


US 7 from New Milford to Canaan is not included in the system (a conspiracy against the town of Kent? :-). This omission evokes parallels to US 7's early years, when it spurned the area for New York's Route 22 corridor until about 1929. Although mid-20th century planners once proposed a freeway along its entire route, US 7 north of New Milford is now known more for scenery and antique shops than access to strategic areas.

Why Routes 32 and 12, serving both banks of the short Thames River? Probably because Route 12 serves submarine facilities and a Navy training area, and Route 32 serves the Coast Guard Academy (and connects New London to I-395).

SSR 490 in Newtown has been upgraded to eventually connect Route 25 to Interstate 84's Exit 11, now that full freeway plans for 25 have been scrapped.

Finally, I confess mild surprise that CT 74 and US 44 are not included as a northern route to Rhode Island. US 6 shoulders that burden alone.

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