Interstate 535

From the AARoads Wiki: Read about the road before you go
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Interstate 535

I-535 highlighted in red
Route information
Auxiliary route of I-35
Length2.78 mi[1][2] (4.47 km)
NHSEntire route
Major junctions
South end5th Street in Superior, WI
Major intersections
North end I-35 / US 53 in Duluth, MN
CountryUnited States
StatesWisconsin, Minnesota
CountiesWI: Douglas
MN: St. Louis
Highway system
  • Minnesota Trunk Highway System
I-494MN MN 610
WIS 441WI I-794

Interstate 535 (I-535) is a 2.78-mile-long (4.47 km) auxiliary Interstate Highway spur route of I-35 in the US states of Minnesota and Wisconsin. It is paired with U.S. Highway 53 (US 53) along its entire route. The Interstate was part of the original 1956 Interstate Highway System and was completed in 1971. Since then, weight limits have been added to the Blatnik Bridge that carries the highway over Saint Louis Bay between Superior, Wisconsin, and Duluth, Minnesota.

Route description

I-535 begins in the city of Superior, Wisconsin, at the junction of US 53 and State Trunk Highway 35 (WIS 35) and continues northwest across the Blatnik Bridge over the Saint Louis Bay of Lake Superior. The freeway crosses from Wisconsin into Minnesota on the bridge and then meets an interchange for Garfield Avenue and the Port Terminal in the city of Duluth. I-535 ends at the junction of US 53 and I-35, known locally as the "Can of Worms" interchange, which features a pair of left exits from I-35, a stoplight, and lane drops over the I-35 bridge.[4]

I-535 is the shortest Interstate in both Minnesota and Wisconsin. It also is the only Interstate in the two states with no exit numbers. I-535 in Wisconsin is one of the few instances in the United States of a three-digit Interstate Highway entering a state that its parent two-digit Interstate does not enter. Other examples include I-275 near Cincinnati, Ohio; I-287; and I-129.

In 2007, the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) surveys measured a traffic along their segment of I-535 at 21,800–29,500 vehicles daily, on average.[5] The Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) measured 29,500 vehicles daily in their 2009 survey.[6] As an Interstate Highway, I-535 is a part of the National Highway System, a network of roads important to the country's economy, defense, and mobility.[7] I-535 is part of the Falls-to-Falls Corridor, a federally recognized trade corridor spanning from Eau ClaireChippewa Falls, Wisconsin, to International Falls, MinnesotaFort Frances, Ontario.


I-535 was authorized in 1957 as part of the original Interstate Highway System.[8] The Blatnik Bridge was opened in 1961,[9] and the ramps to I-35 were completed in 1971.[3] I-535 and the Blatnik Bridge replaced a swinging toll bridge at generally the same location. That bridge existed from 1897 to 1962 and carried US 53 from Connor's Point in Superior to Garfield Avenue in Duluth.[10]

In November 2011, both MnDOT and WisDOT installed new signs to remind drivers that trucks over 40 short tons (36 t) gross vehicle weight cannot use the Blatnik Bridge; these vehicles will be rerouted to the nearby Bong Bridge. According to the press release, permitted, overweight vehicles have been restricted from using the Blatnik Bridge since early 2008 when inspections showed that corrosion and time were starting to affect the structure. Transportation officials say that the bridge is aging, and restriction of overweight vehicles will help to extend the life of the bridge. Drivers who disregard the posted weight limits will be ticketed.[11]

Exit list

All exits are unnumbered.

WisconsinDouglasSuperior0.000.00Fifth Street, Hammond AvenueRoadway continues to the south as Hammond Avenue; southern end of freeway

US 53 south to US 2 east

WIS 35 south to US 2 west
Southern end of US 53 concurrency; southbound exit and northbound entrance
Saint Louis Bay1.21
Blatnik Bridge
Minnesota–Wisconsin state line
MinnesotaSt. LouisDuluth0.536–
Garfield Avenue – Port Terminal

I-35 north to LSCT / MN 61
Northbound exit and southbound entrance, I-35 exit 255
I-35 south / LSCT – Minneapolis, Saint Paul
Southbound exit and northbound entrance; I-35 exit 255

US 53 north (21st Avenue West) – Virginia
Northern end of US 53 concurrency; Can of Worms interchange
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi


  1. ^ Distance measurements reset at the state line.[1][2]


  1. ^ a b Region 5 Staff (May 14, 2009). State Trunk Highway Log for Region 5. Wisconsin Department of Transportation. p. 680.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  2. ^ a b District 1 Staff (August 20, 2010). "Trunk Highway Logpoint Listing: Construction District 1" (PDF). Minnesota Department of Transportation. Archived from the original (PDF) on December 4, 2008. Retrieved October 5, 2010.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  3. ^ a b District 1 Staff. "Construction Log 6980" (PDF). Minnesota Department of Transportation. Archived from the original (PDF) on September 14, 2012. Retrieved September 18, 2011.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  4. ^ Google (February 22, 2008). "Duluth, MN" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved February 22, 2008.
  5. ^ Wisconsin Department of Transportation (2007). City of Superior (PDF) (Map). Madison: Wisconsin Department of Transportation. Sheet 1. Archived from the original (PDF) on March 22, 2012. Retrieved September 18, 2011.
  6. ^ Minnesota Department of Transportation (2006). TH Traffic Volumes, City of Duluth (PDF) (Map). St. Paul: Minnesota Department of Transportation. Sheet 3. Retrieved September 18, 2011.
  7. ^ Adderly, Kevin (August 26, 2010). "The National Highway System". Federal Highway Administration. Retrieved January 1, 2011.
  8. ^ Bureau of Public Roads (October 17, 1957). Routes to be Added to the National System of Interstate and Defense Highways (Map). Washington, DC: Bureau of Public Roads. Retrieved September 18, 2011 – via Wikimedia Commons.
  9. ^ District 1 Staff. "Construction Log 6981" (PDF). Minnesota Department of Transportation. Archived from the original (PDF) on September 14, 2012. Retrieved September 18, 2011.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  10. ^ Perrine, Matthew R. (May 18, 2007). "Discover Duluth: Interstate Bridge". Duluth News Tribune. Retrieved September 13, 2020.
  11. ^ Burns, Krista (November 21, 2011). "Load Limit Signs on Blatnik Bridge". Duluth, MN: KBJR-TV/KDLH-TV. Archived from the original on May 24, 2012. Retrieved December 10, 2011.

External links