A Beltway? For Waterbury?

Hartford is not the only city with a cancelled beltway. Waterbury joins the club, thanks to proposals in the 1963 Waterbury Area Transportation Study. This would not have been an I-291-style freeway; but the loop routes (three of them) were to be ultimately built out to four lanes divided, access controlled, with widely-spaced at-grade intersections. We'll dig into these loop routes and other proposals from the study.

The study itself used population and growth projections into the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s. As expected in 1963, the recommendations were highway-centric and expected growth through the mid-20th century to continue. In the end, almost none of the new highway recommendations were adopted.

The study was digitized by Google from a copy at the Ohio State University; you can read it online at HathiTrust.


The study concluded that the freeways already proposed or under construction were adequate for the next few decades, with one small exception. These were:

Road Classes

A main focus of the study was an expanded system of sub-freeway routes, called Regional Highways. The hierarchy of road types would look like this, from largest to smallest:

Regional Highways

The three recommended loops would be regional highways. None of them would be 360-degree complete loops. No route numbers were proposed. The loops were:

Other radial routes would also become regional highways:


It's been 60 years; what impact has the Study had on the region? What unimplemented ideas might still be good to take up?