US 67 and Illinois 267

US 67 was once known for its infamy of crossing the Mississippi River. That changed on January 4, 1994 when the New Clark Bridge opened, replacing the monsortiy of the old 18 wide Clark Bridge. The old bridge, which opened in 1929 (under construction in 1928), was blown up part by part, with the first explosion being August 11, 1994. (You need not know what the events were prior to that, esp. that night before!) 6 more explosions would come in August and September before finally ending in October.

Though not one of the original US highways in 1926, 67 had several routes over the years. Although the northern terminus was at Alt. US 61 near Fredericktown, MO, in 1926; a few years later (not before 1935 or 1940), 67 was routed in Madison County. 67A went down Broadway in Alton, through Hartford on Delmar, and on old Alton Rd. Then, it was cosigned with City 66 as they went across the McKinney Bridge. There was another route that went across the MacAruthur bridge, but I cannot confirm that route.

In 1964, 67A was replaced by Route 3 as St. Louis started to get rid of such US highways such as 67A. A new four-lane Route 3 opened a few years later.

Before 1994, 67 went through Alton on Belle Street and crossed the river by the Colonial Bread store. After 1994, 67 got a new bridge as well as a new route through Alton. In the summer of 1994, the spans were blown up in a span of 8 to 10 weeks. Today, planners from Godfrey and Jerseyville are talking about building a new US 67 that would take an routing along the current IL 267.

For more information about US 67, go to the Altonweb site. On November 12, 1997, NOVA (a show on PBS) showed a documentary film called "Super Bridge". This site can also be accessed from the Altonweb page. Some more photos of the new Clark Bridge can be seen at the Riverbend 2000 homepage.

Some more info about US 67 from Mark Bozanich:

Although I don't have other Missouri maps from the 1930's, I do have maps of other states that have small US maps on the back. I have a Shell map of Washington State from 1932 that shows US 67 extended N to Davenport IA via IL 3 from Alton to Rock Island.

Although the northern terminus of US 67 was in Missouri under the original US highway numbering scheme of 1926, US 67 is one of the older US highway corridors in Madison County. By 1932, US 67 was extended N into Illinois.

Even though the old Clark Bridge had been opened to traffic across the Mississippi River at Alton in the late 1920's, US 67 originally crossed the Mississippi River with US 66 via the McKinley Bridge from St. Louis to Venice. From Venice, US 67 headed N along what had been IL 3 via Alton to Rock Island. The original route of IL 3 from Alton to Jacksonville that became US 67 went through East Newbern, Jerseyville, and Carrollton. By the mid 1940's, US 67 had been rerouted from St. Louis to Alton via the Clark Bridge. The Alton to Jerseyville section now passed through Godfrey and Delhi. By the mid 1950's, a more direct route for US 67 from Godfrey towards Jacksonville via Greenfield had opened. As you know, the new Clark Bridge replaced the old Clark Bridge at Alton. Heading N from Downtown Alton, US 67 was rerouted via an abandoned railroad grade to the north end of town.

US 67 Branches: These branches remained revalant with the locals even after they were decommissioned in 1964. Bozanich has more info about those routes:

Alt US 67

There were two Alt US 67's in Madison County. The first started south of Alton, the second, north. When US 67 was switched to the Clark Bridge sometime before the mid 1940's, The earlier route of US 67 from St. Louis to Alton became Alt US 67. In the mid 1940's, Alt US 67 was switched from the McKinley Bridge to the MacArthur Bridge. By 1965, the Alt US 67 designation had been dropped and the IL 3 designation had returned to this route. The original IL 3 roadway had been replaced by new alignments in places over the years, however.

When US 67 was shifted to a more direct route north of Alton between Godfrey and Jacksonville by the mid 1950's, the old route via Jerseyville and Carrollton became Alt US 67. This designation lasted until around 1965 when the route became IL 267.

Illinois 267: This route was once Alt US 67 from the mid 50's to 1965 as it went from Godfrey through Jerseyville on its way to meet up with US 67 about 20 miles south of Jacksonville. This route, despite being one of the most dangerous in central Illinois, has remained unchanged over the years.

This route may change in the next 10 years, however, as IDOT is planning a new alignment of both US 67/IL 111 and IL 267 north of Godfrey. The locals are calling it "Corridor 67" since this new alignment could become US 67.