Four-Leaf Clover Highway Interchange Designed In 1931
It’s hard to imagine a point in our nation’s history when people got genuinely excited about newly-introduced highway features. However, in November 1931, the Engineering News-Record reported on the first cloverleaf highway interchange in the U.S. Located in Woodbridge, NJ, the cloverleaf was hailed as ”an outstanding development” in traffic engineering. How influential was its impact? Consider that the recently begun Hoover Dam was relegated to the back pages of that issue!
Today, the cloverleaf is as common as the asphalt roadway itself and they’re typically encountered with much less fanfare and excitement than they were approximately 85 years ago. Yet, cloverleafs possess certain advantages within their design. The first of which is their ability to link ramps safely in order to accommodate left turn situations. This makes them well-suited for the intersection of two freeways. Additionally, their design works well in rural & suburban locations where space is abundant.
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