United States Route 1
Florida's commercial business route and mainland highway
Tuesday May 23, 2017
My father as a young man in Richmond, Virgina took the initiative to drive with some friends southward on US Route 1 in the late 1940's prior to enlisting in the military. United States Route 1 in those days ran from Maine southward to Key West with little competition from it's bigger brother 1-95 that didn't exist until the 1960's. It's sister highway to the east and along the coastline A1A attempts to run exclusively along the beaches as a coastal highway, but alternates between US 1 and itself as it jumps across the Intracoastal Waterway and makes it way north and south.
This American Highway is rich with history and events, but Florida's part of it is newer than most and called the Blue Star Memorial Highway as a whole and the Dixie Highway in much of the southern end of the state. Much of the highway was built over time, but in 1926 it was designated as US Route 1 connecting Main with Florida and growth along this corridor has multiplied with the years. Our state and federal government has taken much of the interstate traffic off of US 1 and left local traffic to do business and storefronts on the present route.
US 1 enters Brevard County at the north end of the St. Sebastian River, continuing to hug the western shoreline of the Indian River. The first community it enters is Grant-Valkaria, with intersections with Micco Road, followed by Valkaria Road just east of the Valkaria Airport. US 1 then travels north to Malabar, intersecting State Road 514. It continues north to Palm Bay, through the central area of the city, with an intersection of County Road 516 (Palm Bay Road). It is locally designated the Johnson-Grogan Highway from South Palm Bay city limits to the Melbourne city limits. As US 1 enters Melbourne, the road veers a few blocks west of the Indian River, heading towards an intersection of U.S. Route 192 at the 1900 Building. A few blocks north, US 1 returns to the shoreline of the Indian River and then intersects State Road 508, followed by State Road 507, with US 1 veering away from the Indian River and crossing the Elbow Creek Bridge. Just north of the bridge, it enters the Eau Gallie portion of Melbourne, and intersects State Road 518. It then enters Palm Shores, another portion of Melbourne, leaving it just south of State Road 404, the Pineda Causeway. 1.8 miles (2.9 km) north of the intersection is the community of Pineda.
In Rockledge, US 1 intersects with CR 515 and the Indian River Lagoon Scenic Highway follows that road for 14 miles (23 km), as US 1 stays a few blocks west of the river. North of Rockledge, it enters Cocoa, running through Historic Cocoa Village on the west side, and intersecting State Road 520. North of Cocoa, it intersects State Road 528, the lone expressway US 1 crosses in Brevard County. In Brentwood Heights, US 1 intersects CR 515 again, with US 1 resuming its status as the Indian River Lagoon Scenic Highway. US 1 continues north to Titusville, first intersecting with State Road 405, with east SR 405 leading to NASA Parkway and the main entrance of the John F. Kennedy Space Center on Merritt Island. Still in Titusville, it intersects State Road 50. Now in central Titusville, US 1 intersects SR 405 again, and State Road 406, where the Indian River Lagoon Scenic Highway ends on US 1 and proceeds onto east SR 406. North of Titusville, US 1 steers away from the Indian River and travels in a parallel direction with Interstate 95 from here to the Volusia County line. In Scottsmoor, just south of the Volusia County line, it intersects CR 5A, a 1-mile (1.6 km) spur route of the road itself.
U.S. Route 1 (US 1) in Florida runs 545 miles (877 km) along the state's east coast from Key West to its crossing of the St. Marys River into Georgia north of Boulogne, and south of Folkston. US 1 was designated through Florida when the U.S. Highway System was established in 1926. The road is maintained by the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT).
From its national southern terminus in Key West, US 1 carries the Overseas Highway—the Keys main highway north to the mainland, entering South Florida. From South Florida to Jacksonville, US 1 runs close to the coastline of the Atlantic Ocean and the Intracoastal Waterway, generally east of I-95 and west of State Road A1A, running roughly parallel with both roads. North of Jacksonville, US 1 curves inland towards the St. Mary's River as it enters Georgia.
United States Route 1 runs from Maine southward to Key West, Florida and is still considered by many to be the best drive in America showing off it's eastern shoreline.
Last modified: September 15 2016 19:36:59.
Published by: Captain Richard Bradley of Lagooner Fishing Guides©