Glenn Highway

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Glenn Highway

Glenn Highway highlighted in red
Route information
Length179 mi[1] (288 km)
Glenn Highway
Major junctions
West end AK-1 (East 5th & 6th Avenues) Anchorage near Merrill Field
East end AK-1 / AK-4 (Richardson Highway) in Glennallen
CountryUnited States
Highway system

The Glenn Highway (part of Alaska Route 1) is a highway in the U.S. state of Alaska, extending 179 miles (288 km) from Anchorage near Merrill Field to Glennallen on the Richardson Highway. The Tok Cut-Off is often considered part of the Glenn Highway, for a total length of 328 miles (528 km).

Route description

The longest stretch of freeway in Alaska runs mostly along the Glenn Highway, beginning in north Anchorage, continuing onto the Parks Highway at the interchange of the two roads, and ending in the city limits of Wasilla, for a total of approximately 38 miles (61 km). This 38-mile (61 km) portion of the Glenn Highway is the only road access to Anchorage for most of the state (with the exception of the Kenai Peninsula on the Seward Highway), and as such is the main traffic corridor for Anchorage's suburbs in the Chugiak-Eagle River and Mat-Su areas. The highest point on the highway is 3,332 feet (1,016 m) at Eureka Summit, which sits on the divide between the Chugach and Talkeetna mountain ranges.[2]


The highway originated as the Palmer Road in the 1930s, to reach the agricultural colony at Palmer. During World War II it was completed to Glennallen as part of a massive program of military road and base building that also resulted in the Alaska Highway,[3] and connected Anchorage to the continental highway system.[4]

It is named for Captain Edwin Glenn (1857–1926), leader of an 1898 U.S. Army expedition to find an Alaska route to the Klondike gold fields[5] (the eventual Richardson Highway). The highway was paved in the 1950s.


The "Talkeetna Mountains Hadrosaur" specimen was discovered in 1994 in a quarry being excavated for road material.[6] That fall, excavation began, and was resumed in the summer of 1996.[6] The quarry is near the Glenn Highway, approximately 150 miles northeast of Anchorage.[7] This specimen was the first associated skeleton of an individual dinosaur discovered in all of Alaska.[8]

Interstate Highway System

Interstate A-1

LocationPalmer to Fairbanks
Length323.69 mi (520.93 km)
NHSEntire route

Glenn Highway is part of the unsigned part of the Interstate Highway System as Interstate A-1.[9][10]

Major intersections

Municipality of Anchorage00.0Airport Heights DriveWestern terminus. Roadway continues west as 5th Avenue
Bragaw Street
Boniface Parkway
Turpin StreetEastbound exit and entrance
Muldoon Road
Arctic Valley RoadEastbound exit and westbound entrance
D Street
Eagle River Loop Road
Artillery Road
Eklutna Park Drive
South Birchwood Loop Road
North Birchwood Loop Road
Voyles Boulevard
Lake Hill Drive
Paradis LaneNo access westbound to Paradis Lane
Old Glenn HighwayEastbound entrance and exit
Eklutna Village Road
Old Glenn HighwayNo access to Old Glenn Highway eastbound
Matanuska-SusitnaKnik RiverSFC James Bondsteel Bridge of Honor across the Knik River
Knik River Access
AK-3 north (George Parks Highway) – Wasilla, Fairbanks
Northern end of freeway
PalmerPalmer-Wasilla Highway
UnorganizedGlennallen179288 AK-1 / AK-4 (Richardson Highway) – Valdez, Tok
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi



  1. ^ Google (December 28, 2013). "Glenn Highway" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved December 28, 2013.
  2. ^ The Milepost, 59th edition, pg. 322, ISBN 978-1-892154-21-7
  3. ^ "Alaska History and Cultural Studies - America's Territory - Overland Routes Develop". Archived from the original on 2009-09-12. Retrieved 2010-04-15.
  4. ^ "Travel Alaska's Glenn Highway with BEARFOOT Guides - Explore Alaska's Matanuska River and Glacier on this National Scenic Byway through the Mountains. Maps Included".
  5. ^ Alaska Yukon Place Names, James W. Phillips author, University of Washington Press (1973)
  6. ^ a b "Introduction," in Pasche and May (2001); page 220.
  7. ^ "Location and Geologic Setting," in Pasche and May (2001); page 220.
  8. ^ "Abstract," in Pasche and May (2001); page 219.
  9. ^ Federal Highway Administration, National Highway System Viewer Archived 2007-08-27 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved August 2007.
  10. ^ Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities, Dwight D. Eisenhower Interstate Routes Archived 2009-07-27 at the Wayback Machine, April 2006


  • Pasch, A. D., K. C. May. 2001. Taphonomy and paleoenvironment of hadrosaur (Dinosauria) from the Matanuska Formation (Turonian) in South-Central Alaska. In: Mesozoic Vertebrate Life. Ed.s Tanke, D. H., Carpenter, K., Skrepnick, M. W. Indiana University Press. Pages 219–236.

External links

Media related to Glenn Highway at Wikimedia Commons