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End of US highway 25

View a map showing this route.

Additional research and/or photo credits: Shawn De Cesari; Nathan Edgars; H.B. Elkins; Paul DiGianfrancesco; Don Hargraves; Karin and Martin Karner; Dan Moraseski; Jeremy Moses; Alex Nitzman; Greg Osbaldeston; me

Approx. time period North terminus South terminus
1926-1929 Port Huron, MI North Augusta, SC
1929-1933 Port Huron, MI (near Statesboro, GA)
1933-1936 Port Austin, MI (near Statesboro, GA)
1936-1974 Port Austin, MI Brunswick, GA
1974-present Covington, KY Brunswick, GA

Originally US 25 roughly followed what is now I-75 through Cincinnati, and north through Dayton, Lima, Toledo, and Detroit. From there it went to Port Huron MI via a road which today is signed with several different state and county highway numbers. The photo below was taken on Military Street facing north towards Water Street (Lapeer Road):

Hargraves, 2005

This was probably where M-21 ended, and thus would've been a logical point to terminate US 25.

In 1934, the US 25 designation was extended northward about 85 miles to Port Austin; the shot below is facing west on Spring Street at the meeting point with Lake Street:

Hargraves, 2005

Don writes, "US 25 most likely would have followed Port Au Barques Road into town, where it changed to Spring Street. Later on, US 25 was rerouted south, coming in on Grindstone Road to the south of Port Austin." That's the arrangement depicted on the 1970 USGS topo:

USGS 7.5 min series, c. 1970

It's unclear from that map whether US 25 ended at its junction with M-53, or whether the designation was extended north to the center of town. In the '30s it was a fairly widespread practice to sign routes into the central business district, and Don agrees: "I'm guessing they routed the road north so that it ended downtown, and thus this picture of Lake Street looking north onto the intersection with Spring Street...

Hargraves, 2005

...which would've been the second and final US 25 terminus in Port Austin."

US 25 was an original 1926 route; at the time it ran down to North Augusta SC, ending unceremoniously at the Georgia stateline for a few years. Georgia picked up the route in 1929, extending the south end of US 25 to its junction with US 80 just west of Statesboro GA (USGS maps label this junction "Hopeulikit"). The shot below is looking northwest along US 25/80:

Karners, Apr. 2014

Today the highway curves to the right, and at the light in the distance, US 80 splits off by making a left turn. The road goes behind the trees in the center of the photo, and then re-emerges in the upper left corner. But in the '30s, US 80 followed the alignment visible along the left side of the photo, and right here is where the south beginning of US 25 split off to the right.

In 1936 the south end of US 25 was extended out of Statesboro along its current corridor, ending in Brunswick GA. It comes into Brunswick having been co-signed with US 341 for about 40 miles, from Jesup. At first, US 25 probably ended north of downtown (at the same place where US 341 had ended since 1926), where those routes junctioned US 17 - you can view photos and get more info on my US 341 page.

After US 17 was rerouted (perhaps in the 1950s), US 25 and US 341 were extended into town along what had been US 17. Traffic was originally directed through Brunswick on Newcastle Street, but today bypasses the downtown area via Bay Street. US 25 splits off onto Gloucester Street, while US 341 continues about a mile further south, then heads east on Fourth Avenue. Both routes end at their junctions with US 17, or Glynn Avenue. The photo below is from eastbound Gloucester at Glynn:

Osbaldeston, Mar. 2002

There was some construction at that intersection in 2003, and some re-signing as well - here's how that same view looked in 2004:

Nitzman, July 2004

For one thing, US 25 is now co-signed with GA hwy. "Connector 25", and US 17 is co-signed with mainline GA 25 - all of which serves to complicate things, if you ask me. Moving a little closer, we have this assembly...

Nitzman, July 2004

...and the "End" assembly in the distance looks like this:

Nitzman, July 2004

The assembly below is posted on northbound Glynn (US 17), approaching the south beginning of US 25...

Nitzman, July 2004

...and the overhead signage in the distance is shown close-up below:

Nitzman, July 2004

Southbound Glynn used to look like this...

Osbaldeston, Mar. 2002

...but now overhead signage has been added to that direction as well:

Nitzman, July 2004

In 1974 the US 25 designation was eliminated in Michigan and Ohio. Since then, the north end of US 25 is in Covington KY (although there's a minor dispute about that). Let's begin by heading west on KY hwy. 8 (4th Street) in Covington. Note that US 25 is still signed northbound from this point:

Moraseski/De Cesari, Nov. 2001 (still there as of 2013)

That right turn puts drivers onto the Clay Wade Bailey Bridge over the Ohio River. More than halfway across the river, the bridge enters Ohio. At that point on the bridge used to be what was the last northbound US 25 sign:

Moraseski/De Cesari, Nov. 2001

All of those signs were replaced around 2008... all, that is, except for the US 25 shield:

Moses, Oct. 2013

H.B. noted that the specs of those signs suggest that they were installed by Ohio DoT, which does not consider US 25 to exist in their state. Neither does AASHTO, which lists Covington as the north endpoint of the route. The dispute arises because of a technicality: Kentucky maintains about 140 feet of the Ohio portion of the bridge. As a result, KYTC's internal description of US 25 has the designation extending to the end of the section they maintain (which is in Cincinnati city limits). However, I consider this to be an error, because Kentucky doesn't have the authority to define a route outside of their borders. There's no question that they maintain the bridge a short distance into Ohio, but the bridge is designated as US 25 only as far as the Ohio line.

Further evidence is visible in the photo below, which was taken from westbound 3rd Street in Cincinnati. This is southbound US 42/US 127, which continue by turning left and crossing into Kentucky via the CWB Bridge:

Moraseski/De Cesari, Nov. 2001 (still there as of 2013)

Note how the US 25 shield has a "JCT" above it: if US 25 existed in Ohio, there would be no need for that. But once you're on the bridge, it's not long before you see the first southbound US 25 sign, posted right where the route officially begins:

Moraseski/De Cesari, Nov. 2001 (still there as of 2013, although all signs have been replaced)

That's heading south over the Ohio River, and (unlike its counterpart), that US 25 sign is still there.