Image of NC I-73 Shield, from Shield's Up! Segment 5

Where:  Greensboro Urban Loop Freeway from Bryan Blvd South to US 220

Length:   Approx. 12 Miles

Status: Completed, between February 2004 and February 2008

North of I-40 signed:                                    

The rest:  

Jump to Photos

Segment Info

This segment of I-73 starts at the Bryan Blvd. on the Greensboro Loop and travels south along the Loop to US 220. With the completion of the I-73 Segments north of Bryan Blvd in July 2017, I-73 was officially signed along the entire length of its segment along the Loop (see photos below). Prior to this though, despite the I-73 (and I-840) routings have officially been established by the FHWA since February 2008, the route was signed (only on the road itself) as Future I-73/I-840 south to I-40. NCDOT apparently believed the route to be to short (3.5 miles) to be signed as a full interstate.1

I-73 is officially signed at its interchange with I-40 and travels south to US 220. Work on the section north of I-40 (Future I-73/I-840) to serve the new FedEx hub started in August 2003, and was opened to traffic on December 18, 2007. The I-73 portion of the Loop west of I-85 to I-40, started at the same time and was finished on February 21, 2008.2 The total cost of construction for both sections (12 miles in length) was listed as $592 million in the 2007-2013 STIP.3 When the highway opened in early 2008 this was also part of the I-40 section of the Loop. However, in September 2008 after much citizen outcry about noisy traffic, NCDOT relented and put I-40 back on its original alignment through Greensboro. US 421 was rerouted to join the Loop from its exit south of Greensboro along the I-85 portion of the Loop and joins I-73 between I-85 and the I-40 exit (103) for about 7.5 miles. I-73 then turns south at the US 220 exit which now is signed I-73 South with new signs installed in 2013). While technically joining I-85 for a mile between Business 85 and US 220, I-73's path only overlaps I-85, the routes never actually meet in either direction. I-73 north uses a C/D ramp for the Groometown Road exit and merges with US 421 after it leaves I-85.3 The I-85 portion of the Loop was completed in February 2004, almost exactly 4 years before the I-73 section. A space was left on overhead signage along I-85 South for future I-73 shields at the new US 220 interchange (there is no US 220 access northbound from I-85, this means the northbound exit has an I-85 exit number, and originally southbound it had an I-40 exit number (which, coincidentally was 220) now it has an I-73 number, 96) which were installed in September 2013. Both interstates appear on many signs around the area (for more information on the Loop, go to the NCDOT Greensboro Loop page). (Curiously, signs put up for the US 220 exit on the newer I-73 section of the Loop in April 2007 did not include a space for I-73, these were replaced though with I-73/US 220 signs in the spring of 2013, see photos below).4 I-73 North joins the Loop at Exit 95B, exiting itself off of US 220. Work on the section north of I-40 (Future I-73/I-840) to serve the new FedEx hub started in August 2003, and was opened to traffic on December 18, 2007. The I-73 portion of the Loop west of I-85 to I-40, started at the same time and was finished on February 21, 2008.5 The total cost of construction for both sections (12 miles in length) was listed as $592 million in the 2007-2013 STIP.6

New Signage Coming as a Result of Extension of Greensboro Loop

As discussed in Segment 4, as part of the contract to extend the Greensboro Loop north of Bryan Blvd to US 220/Battleground Avenue, new signage will be put up along the Loop north of I-40 (and on I-40 itself) that will apply new I-73 exit numbers and I-73 and I-840 signage.7 The construction work will start in the fall of 2013, the signage may not be put up, however, until the new roadway is completed. The West Friendly Avenue Exit will change numbers from 2 to 204 and I-840 will end at now Exit 203, I-40. The plans also indicate the I-840 exit for US 220 will be 6.

Here are some of the sign plans for the current section of the I-73/I-840 Loop the contract from the NCDOT Project Letting page.8

Image of Signage Plans for I-73 Exit from Greensboro Loop, from NCDOT
Image of plans for future signage on W. Friendly Ave at I-73/I-840, from NCDOT







Image of plans for future signage along I-73/I-840 for Exits 104 and 107, from NCDOT










Image of plans for future signs for I-40 on I-73 South/I-840 West in Greensboro, from NCDOT








Image of plans for future I-73 North/I-840 East sign on Greensboro Loop, from NCDOT








And here are some of the plans for the new I-40 signage:

Image of plans for future signage on I-40 East at I-73/I-840 in Greensboro, from NCDOT










Image of plans for future signage on I-40 East at I-73/I-840 in Greensboro, from NCDOT









Image of plans for future signage on I-40 East at I-73/I-840 in Greensboro, from NCDOT











"Drive" This Segment using Google Maps Street View

Future I-73 South/I-840 West at Bryan Blvd: Using Bryan Blvd. On-Ramp to Loop (June 2015)

Future I-73 South/I-840 West at I-40: Approaching On-Ramp to I-40 West (August 2015)

I-73 / US 421 North at I-85: Using Ramp from I-85 South (September 2015)

I-73 / US 421 North at Wendover Ave.:Using On-Ramp from Wendover Ave. heading West (September 2015)

Segment 5 Photos

Photos taken by site contributor, Strider, in September and October 2017:

Image taken of new overhead signage approaching the Greensboro Loop on I-85 North with erroneous I-85 shield instead of Business 85,
        by StriderNew overhead signage placed on I-85 North approaching I-73 and the Greensboro Loop in August 2017. Notice the major goof of having 2 I-85 Norths, the one on the right is supposed to be Business 85.


Image taken of auxiliary sign for traffic heading for I-73 South via Business 85 North on I-85 North in Greensboro, by StriderA new overhead auxiliary sign was also put up telling I-73/US 220 South traffic should use Business 85.


Image of newly placed overhead signage for I-73 North and To I-73 South approaching Greensboro Urban Loop, by StriderOverhead signage for the I-73 and Business 85 exits also put up in August 2017. The Business 85 sign now has a listing for I-73 South. Notice also that the To West I-40 text has been removed.


Image of newly placed overhead sign for I-73 North and To I-73 South approaching Greensboro Urban Loop, by StriderOverhead signage at the Business 85 ramp and 1/2 mile before the I-73 exit, put up in September.


Image of new overhead exit sign for I-73 North on I-85 North at Greensboro Urban Loop, by StriderFinal new sign at the ramp to I-73 North, also put up in September.


Image of new overhead sign at ramp to Groometown Road in I-73 North just prior to merge with US 421 North on Greensboro LoopNew overhead signs placed in October at ramp to Groometown Road adds Martinsville to destination, but drops reference of To I-40 West. The I-85 exit number still is used.


Earlier Photos taken by Strider in July 2017:

Image showing altered reassurance marker signage for now formerly Future I-73 on Greensboro Loop north of I-40, by StriderNCDOT removed the I-73 shield from this reassurance marker sign on I-73 North after the I-40 exit, leaving I-840 as a Future route, for now.


Image of new I-73 North trailblazer placed on Greensboro Loop South between W. Friendly Ave and Bryan Blvd exit, by StriderNew I-73 North Left Lane trailblazer placed prior to Bryan Blvd off-ramp in lieu of overhead signage, for now.


Image of temporary variable message sign to alert traffic about I-73 traffic on Greensboro Loop, by StriderTemporarily placed Variable Message Sign indicating I-73 traffic should use left lane at Bryan Blvd interchange on I-73 North/I-840 East prior to current end of Greensboro Loop.


Image of newly placed I-73 North trailblazer along ramps to Bryan Blvd from Greensboro Loop, by StriderI-73 North trailblazer on Bryan Blvd. exit ramp at current end of Greensboro Loop.


Photos taken on March 30, 2017:

Image of view along Greensboro Outerp Loop heading south after Bryan Blvd exit showing I-73 ramp constructionView looking south on the Greensboro Loop just after the Bryan Blvd. interchange. The Future I-73 South ramp is being reconstructed to handle the increased traffic. Ramp traffic is routed more directly to the main Loop lanes.


Image of view looking south along Greensboro Loop at end of I-73 ramp reconstruction and placement of I-73/I-840 SignFurther south at end of the I-73 South ramp reconstruction, ahead is long standing Future I-73 South/I-840 West sign that is now out-of-date but won't be replaced until the I-73 Connector construction is completed.


Image showing I-73 South trailblazers on both sides of the Greensboro Loop heading southUntil the main exit signs are replaced, these 2 To I-73 South trailblazers are used to direct traffic beyond the I-40 interchange.


Image of view of new Gate City Blvd exit sign on I-73 South in Greensboro Now beyond the I-40 exit on I-73 South, this is the 1-Mile advance sign for the new Gate City Blvd exit opened in 2015.


Image of Exit sign at new Gate City Blvd interchange on I-73 South in GreensboroA closer look at the Gate City Blvd. exit. Traffic leaves and enters I-73 through a Diverging Diamond interchange whose ramps can be seen under the bridge.


Image showing 2-Mile advance overhead signage for I-85/Bus. 85 exits on I-73/Greensboro Loop SouthAnother photo taken of the 2-Mile Advance signage for the I-85/I-85 Business exit (original from 2009 seen below), now instead of 1 sign for Exits 97 A and B, now two signs are used for Exits 97A and 97B/C.


Image showing overhead exit signs prior to I-85/Bus. 85 exit on I-73 South in GreensboroSame signs prior to I-85/Bus. 85 exits as in 2009 but with new A and B/C exit tabs. The C is for the Groometown Road exit, not indicated in the exit signs until the ramp.


Here are earlier photos taken in March 2013 showing the appearance of new I-73 related signage.

Photo of new I-73 signage for Exit 95 along Greensboro Loop at Business 
85 Exit in March 2013, Courtesy of StriderThe first new sign along the Greensboro Loop for the now I-73/US 220 Exit 95 at the current Business 85 Exit put up during the third week of March. Photo courtesy of AARoads Forum contributor Strider (3/20/13).


Photo of new I-73 signage for Exit 95 along Greensboro Loop approaching 
junction with I-85 in March 2013, Courtesy of StriderThe new sign approaching the former US 220 exit on the Greensboro Loop, now I-73/US 220 Exit 95, put up during the third week of March. Photo courtesy of AARoads Forum contributor Strider (3/28/13).


Here are some photos taken along the yet to be opened Future I-73/I-840 and then I-40/I-73 (now I-73/US 421) portions of the Urban Loop in September 2007 and after it opened. New photos of signs with changes due to the re-routing of I-40 appear before older ones.

Photo of view of Greensboro Loop under construction from Bryan Blvd Bridge
in Dec. 2007The view from the Bryan Blvd. bridge over Future I-73/ I-840 before it opened in December 2007. Except for the future on-ramp to I-73 South/I-840 West on your left, the road is only graded because no construction is to take place north of here until 2013.


View of construction of Greensboro Urban Loop at future West
Friendly Avenue exit in Sept. 2007Construction going on at the Future I-73/I-840 / West Friendly Avenue (Exit 2) interchange in anticipation of its opening a few months later.


Photo of the Greensboro Loop interchange with Wendover Ave, under 
construction in Sept. 2007The future I-40/I-73 Urban Loop interchange with Wendover Avenue with further work due before opening in January 2008.


Photo of view westbound from High Point Road Bridge of Greensboro Urban Loop 
under construction, Sept. 2007Looking westbound from the High Point Road bridge over the Future I-40/I-73 Loop section. This area is now a construction zone again for the building of a new interchange for High Point Road scheduled to be completed by 2014.


Photo looking east from High Point Road Bridge along the still under
construction Greensboro Urban Loop in Sept. 2007Also from the High Point Road bridge looking east along future I-40/I-73. The walls seen where the road curves are sound barriers, unlike much of the SE portion of the loop this freeway cuts through many existing neighborhoods.


Photo of Future I-73/I-840 sign along Greensboro Urban Loop in Dec. 2007Photo of only I-73 sign along segment north of I-40 after its opening in December 2007.

For additional photos of the northern part of the Loop open on December 18, go to this Photo Album Page.


Photo of new signs for I-73 Section of Loop prematurely displayed on I-85
North near GreensboroHere was a sneak peak of the signs for the I-73 portion of the Loop before officially being opened on I-85 North (2/10/08).


Photo of original sign for I-73 Segment of Greensboro Loop on I-85 North
in Feb. 2008The sign above initially read, when uncovered, West I-40/North I-73 Winston-Salem (I-73 control city (likely Martinsville VA) to be added later).


Photo of revised sign for I-73 Segment of Greensboro Loop on i-85 North 
in June 2009View of same sign as above when changed after I-40 was rerouted back to its original alignment. The sign on the left was replaced entirely, notice the US 421 control city of Sanford replaced Raleigh, the middle may be a new or modified sign, the right was made correct by removing the Business 40 shield. (6/14/09)


The following photos are on I-85 South at and approaching the I-73/US 220 Interchange:

Photo of new I-73 shield on US 220 Exit sign on I-85
in Greensboro, from StriderNew I-73 Shield Appears on Former blank space next to US 220 North sign at the C/D lane off-ramp in October 2013. Photo Courtesy of Strider (10/22/13)



Photo of new I-73 on Overhead sign approaching C/D 
off-ramp on I-85 SouthNew I-73 Shield Appearing on Sign  1/4 mile earlier along C/D Ramp for US 220 North on I-85 South, also put up in October 2013. Photo Courtesy of Strider (10/22/13)



Photo of I-73 signage on I-85 Greensboro Loop in 
Sept. 2013 from AARoads Forum contributor StriderI-73 shields appearing on the ramp signage on I-85 South, previously a blank space on the US 220 South Exit sign. Photo courtesy of Strider (9/29/13)



Photo of I-73 now appearing on I-85 Greensboro 
Loop Signage in Sept. 2013, from StriderI-73 shields also appearing on the 1/2 mile advance signage along I-85 South. Photo Courtesy of Strider. (9/29/13)


Photo of I-73 appearing on I-85 South Greensboro 
Loop Signage in Sept. 2013, from StiderThe first new I-73 Sign seen approaching the ramp for the South Elm/Eugene St Exit on I-85 South, Photo courtesy of Strider. (9/29/13)


New To I-73 South Signage appearing Along US 220
after Business 85 Exit in Greensboro, from Strider New To I-73 South Signage has also been put up on US 220 South approaching the Greensboro Loop from I-40 and Business 85. Photo courtesy of Strider. (9/29/13)


Photo of exit signage along I-85 north approaching the I-73 portion of
the Greensboro Loop in June 2009Here's what the signage looked like prior to September 2013 after the signs were changed due to the I-40 rerouting in June 2009. Notice the blank space awaiting the future South I-73 shield. (6/26/09)


Photo of the three interstate route sign on I-85 South shortly after I-73
segment of Greensboro Loop opened in Feb. 2008Here's what the signage looked like in February 2007 after the Loop first opened (2/23/07). This was the first 3 interstate shield sign going south/westbound on then I-85/40. The triple interstate highway existed on the sign only, as I-73 uses a C/D ramp from US 220 and joins the Loop after I-85 has left.


The Following photos show the 'split' between I-85 South and I-73/US 421 North:

Exit signage at the Split of I-85 South and I-73 North on the Greensboro
Loop in June 2009Here is the second reference to the split of I-85 from I-73 and US 421, as indicated above, the two interstates actually do not share the road. I-73 uses a ramp from US 220 that joins US 421 after I-85 leaves the Loop. (6/26/09)


Exit signage at the split of I-85 South and I-73 North before I-40 was moved back
to its original route, Feb. 2007The sign assembly as it first appeared in February 2007 with the interchange complex now seen in the distance. The road on the far right is actually I-73, a continuation of the US 220 on-ramp that does not access I-85 but also accesses Groometown Road. I-73 joins the Loop after the Groometown Road exit a mile down the ramp. (2/23/07)


Photo of exit signage on I-85 South for I-73/US 421 exit, June 2009Looking at the split signage after it had been changed in June 2009. I-73 is actually the two lane ramp paralleling the main route to the right. (6/26/09)


Photo of exit signage at split of then I-85 and I-40 in Feb. 2007The then split between I-85 and I-40, now I-85 and US 421 in February 2007. There are three lanes in each direction. US 421 does not actually join I-73 for about a 1/2 mile. (2/23/07)


Photo of signage at merge between Greensboro Loop (US 421 North) and I-73 
North in June 2009Here's where I-73 actually joins US 421, the first I-73 milepost can be seen on the left, Mile 97. This exit is officially off of I-85, so that's why the exit number is 122A. In my opinion it should be rightfully I-73 Exit 97, Exit 97A on I-73 South accesses the same roadways. (6/26/09)


The Wendover Avenue Interchange

Photo of exit signage at the Wendover Ave interchange with I-73 Greensboro
Loop in June 2009The new overhead signs put up in June 2009 are mostly correct, except for 'East' I-73. This signage has been changed to reflect the September 2008 decision to remove I-40 from the Loop. The East used to be over where I-40 was, as seen in the photo below, they forgot to change out the I-73 direction on signs going both ways on Wendover. (6/26/09)


Photo of exit signage at Greensboro Loop Wendover Ave Interchange in March 
2008Exit signage at the Wendover Avenue interchange as it appeared in March 2008. Shields for both I-40 and I-73 can be seen in the distance. (3/16/08)


Photo of interstate signs at Wendover on-ramp to I-73 Greensboro Loop in March
2008A close-up of the shields at the I-73/US 421 North Entrance Ramp from Wendover Avenue on 3/16/08. Again, the I-40 sign seen above was removed in June 2009, replaced by a US 421 sign due to the NCDOT decision to remove I-40 from the Loop.


The following are the revised signs at what was the I-73 North/I-40 West Split (Exit 212), now the I-73/US 421 North Split (Exit 103):

Photo of 1/4 mile exit signage at I-40 Exit on I-73 Greensboro Loop, 
courtesy of Evan SemonesThe left-hand sign in the photo was not up when I made my last road trip, notice it still does not have an exit tab (103B). Photo courtesy of Evan Semones (8/2/09).


Photo of Exit 103A ramp signage at I-40 Exit on I-73 Greensboro Loop, courtesy 
of Evan SemonesThe mainline text on the sign in this photo duplicates the exit signage on I-40 with no I-73 (nor I-840) shields, because NCDOT considers the loop north of I-40 too short to merit a full I-73 designation. Photo courtesy of Evan Semones (8/2/09).


Photo of signage for Exit 103B off of I-73 Greensboro Loop, Courtesy of
Evan SemonesThe I-40 exit sign at the on-ramp does feature an Exit 103 tab, as well as the gore sign. The last time I drove through the number on the gore sign was correct but the arrow was pointing to the right. The sign on the right will be replaced by one with I-73 and I-840 shields at the conclusion of construction on the next segment of the Loop. Photo courtesy of Evan Semones (8/2/09).


Photo of End North I-73 sign beyond Exit 103 on Greensboro Loop, Courtesy of
Evan SemonesAn End North I-73 sign after the I-40 West exit ramp and just before the on-ramp from I-40 East. Photo courtesy of Evan Semones (8/2/09).

A Google Street View image taken in June 2014, appears to show that this has been since taken down (See for yourself).


Photo of original signage at I-40 Exit off of I-73 Greensboro Loop, Dec. 2008This is what the signs in the Exit 103 photos above indicated before the I-40 switch. All that happened here was the switch of the exit tab to the I-40/US 421 sign with a change in number. These exit signs were changed in late June 2009, the left exit got an Exit 103B tab, however the right 103A gore sign pointed to the right.(12/08)


Photo of exit signage of I-40 East for Greensboro Loop, before I-40 was moved
back on old alignment, Dec. 2008View in December 2008 heading East on I-40 the last sign assembly before the then I-40/Business 40 split and the beginning of the I-73 Segment. The Exit 212 sign someday will also have North I-73 and East I-840. (12/08)


Photo of revised exit signs for I-73 Greensboro Loop on I-40 East. Courtesy of
Evan SemonesView of sign change due to the NCDOT decision to return I-40 to its original alignment. This was what is now listed as Exit 212A now looks like. The sign was changed in late June 2009. Photo courtesy of Evan Semones. (7/21/09)


Photo of revised exit signs for I-73 Greensboro Loop on I-40 East. Courtesy of
Evan SemonesAnother exit assembly for Exit 212. Notice that traffic to Raleigh is now told to take I-40 through Greensboro. Photo courtesy of Evan Semones. (7/21/09)


Photo of exit signage approaching Exit 211 on I-40 East in Sept. 2009Here's a closer look at the 1/2 mile sign from the East I-40 Exit 211 on-ramp. Notice where the 212 number is, put up flush with 'Exit', while A is off to the right. (7/26/09)


Photo of exit signage for Exit 211 on I-40 East in Greensboro, Sept 2009Here's the signage at the split itself. Notice again how the exit number isn't centered on the now left exit tab. (7/26/09)


Exit signage for I-73/I-840 portion of Greensboro Loop on I-40 West in Sept.
2009Now on West I-40, Exit 212B is for the now signed Future I-73 North/I-840 West. Again, NCDOT does not want put I-73 North on the signs until the highway is complete at least back to US 220 north of Greensboro. (7/26/09)


Exit signage at off-ramp for I-73/I-840 portion of Greensboro Loop on I-40 West 
in Sept. 2009Here are the signs along West I-40 at the westbound off-ramp itself. (7/26/09)


Exit signage for I-73/I-840 portion of Greensboro Loop on I-40 East, Courtesy
of Evan SemonesLike the westbound, the eastbound signs to Future I-73 North will not have I-73 shields for a while. It still reads To Bryan Boulevard/PTI Airport. This route is now officially Interstate 73 according to the latest NCDOT map and so, IMO, the sign should be changed at least to indicate that. Photo courtesy of Evan Semones (7/21/09)


Photo of exit sign for Wendover Avenue on I-73 South Greensboro Loop in
July 2009Exit sign for Wendover Avenue, the only exit not involving an Interstate on this stretch of the Loop. They started building a new exit for High Point Road in 2012. While the exit number was changed to 102, the left hand sign still had an I-40 on it. The control cities will probably be changed to read Asheboro and Sanford. This sign was changed later in 2009 (7/21/09).


Photo of original Greensboro Loop reassurance marker sign in Dec. 2008The original ground-level shield assembly For I-40/I-73 on this stretch of the Loop, after the Wendover Avenue exit. This was replaced by the sign below in July 2009.


Photo or revised I-73/US 421 Greensboro Loop reassurance marker sign in 
July 2009Finally, a sign for South I-73/US 421. The milepost to the left reads 102. (7/26/09)


Photo of I-73 South milemarker 100 near site of future High Point Road 
exit, June 2009Heading South on I-73 between Wendover and I-85, the South I-73 Mile 100 Milepost near where the future High Point Road interchange will as of July 2012 is under construction. (6/26/09)


Photo of I-73 Greensboro Loop exit signs for I-85 and Bus. 85, June 2009Though this exit sign has not been changed, the number has changed to 97 which now accompanies both I-85 exits, instead of two separate exit numbers when Loop was signed I-40. (6/26/09)


Photo of exit signage approaching I-85 South exit on I-73 Greensboro Loop
in June 2009Unlike the original left-hand sign, the new signage recognizes that I-73 continues beyond the I-85 exits, unlike in the sign below. The co-routing of I-85 and I-73 implied in the sign is again misleading as the two routes never travel together. (6/26/09)


Photo of exit signage approaching Business 85 South exit on I-73 Greensboro Loop
in June 2009This sign seems to indicate that both Business 85 and I-85 are routed together for a couple miles, which is the case, no other signs indicate this. The original signage where the Loop meets I-85/Business 85. I-73 just disappeared, the US 220 exit signs going this way do not even have a space for I-73. Since the US 220 exit ramp going this way was on I-40 before the I-85 merge it was I-40 exit 220 (nice coincidence), instead of I-85 Exit 122 going the other way. (12/08)


Photo of exit signage on I-73 Greensboro Loop between I-85 and US 220 in June
2009Unfortunately, as before, I-73 simply disappears as it exits onto US 220 and becomes Future I-73. The only sign that this is still I-73 is the I-73 Mile 96 milepost seen below the US 220 sign.


Photo of the End South I-73 sign at the US 220 South exit on
the Greensboro Loop, August 2009Later in 2009 they placed an End South I-73 sign, just before the ramp to US 220 (Future I-73)


You can also find additional photos taken after the Loop was re-signed after I-40 was moved back at this post on the Sure, Why Not? blog.

View a YouTube Video of a Drive along this Segment.

Here's an additional map showing the total route of the Greensboro Urban Loop:

Map of Route of Greensboro Urban Loop, Courtesy of NCDOT

Image of I-73 NC shield from Shields Up!