Take the easy street to classifying roads

Posted in: Bridges, Highways


Street, avenue, road, boulevard… ever wonder what the difference is between each of these?

The naming convention behind roads is more strategic than it might seem. There are no hard-fast rules, and there are definitely exceptions, but most roads in the United States follows the classifications outlined in this short video from Vox.

Take notice from now on. Be on the lookout for that rare “street” or “avenue” in a rural area. There are also numbering systems with our interstates. The next time you’re on a road trip, see if you can figure out which direction even-numbered interstates run and which direction odd-numbered interstates go.

Can you think of any roads that don’t follow these conventions? Do you think we should take a look at simplifying road classification? Let us know in the comments!

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raymond-hamilton_headshotAbout the Author

Raymond Hamilton, P.E. is a roadway design engineer with more than 10 years of experience in the transportation industry. His knowledge of industry standards and American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials practices spans from large interstates to smaller roads, streets, lanes and boulevards.

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