U.S. Route 163: Difference between revisions

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'''U.S. Route 163''' (also '''U.S. Highway 163''', '''US 163''') is a {{convert|64|mi|km|0|sing=on}} [[United States Numbered Highways|U.S. Highway]] that runs from [[U.S. Route 160 in Arizona|US 160]] northward to [[U.S. Route 191 in Utah|US 191]] in the [[U.S. state]]s of [[Arizona]] and [[Utah]]. The southernmost {{convert|44|mi|km}} of its length is within the [[Navajo Nation]]. The highway forms part of the [[Trail of the Ancients]], a [[National Scenic Byway]]. The highway cuts through the heart of [[Monument Valley]] and has been featured in numerous movies and commercials.
 
The highway was designated in 1970, replacing '''Arizona State Route 464''' and '''Utah State Route 47''' as well as a portion of the old alignment of [[U.S. Route 160|US 160]] in Utah. In 1981, [[U.S. Route 191|US 191]] was routed over the northern section of US 163, effectively truncating the northern terminus to [[Bluff, Utah]] from [[Crescent Junction, Utah|Crescent Junction]]. The state of Utah initiallybriefly had plans for a different routing of US 163 north of Bluff. These plans were rejected, resulting in discrepancies between the signed route and the official designation by the [[American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials]] that were not resolved until 2008. The route number does not follow the numbering convention for U.S. highways, as the number 163 would normally be used for a spur of [[U.S. Route 63]]; however, these two highways have never connected.
 
==Route description==
The state of Utah signed a joint intent with the [[Navajo Nation]] and [[San Juan County, Utah|San Juan County]] in 1986 to construct a new highway to connect [[Bluff, Utah|Bluff]] with [[Montezuma Creek, Utah|Montezuma Creek]]. Businesses in Monument Valley asked the Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) to request extensions of US&nbsp;163 and [[U.S. Route 666 (Utah)|US 666]] using this new road.<ref name=resolutions666>{{cite web|url=http://www.dot.utah.gov/main/uconowner.gf?n=566642327241913602|title=Highway Resolutions SR-666|publisher=Utah Department of Transportation|accessdate=February 7, 2008}}</ref> The proposal would have US 163 run from [[Cedar City, Utah|Cedar City]] to [[U.S. Route 160 (Colorado)|US 160]] near [[Cortez, Colorado]] along the routes of [[Utah State Route 14|State Route 14]], [[U.S. Route 89]], [[Arizona State Route 98]], [[U.S. Route 160]], the current US&nbsp;163, the new road from Bluff to Montezuma Creek, and [[Colorado State Highway 41]]. The proposal for US&nbsp;666 would extend to [[Richfield, Utah|Richfield]] via upgrades to [[Utah State Route 95|State Route 95]] and [[Utah State Route 24|State Route 24]].<ref name=resolutions666/> UDOT submitted the proposal for US&nbsp;666 to AASHTO, which was rejected. AASHTO cited that the route was not direct, and SR-24 was not built to U.S. Highway standards.<ref name=resolutions666/> UDOT did not pursue the extension of US&nbsp;163, even though the Utah state legislature had already approved the new road from Bluff to Montezuma creek as route 163.<ref name=resolutions163/>
 
With this extension the Utah definition of US&nbsp;163 conflicted with the AASHTO definition. UDOT resolved this discrepancy by signing the extended portion as State Route 163. In 2004, the plan to extend US&nbsp;163 was abandoned, and the extension was renumbered [[Utah State Route 162|SR-162]] to "make the state route numbers run synonymous with the U.S. route designation."<ref name=resolutions163/> Although the state changed the definition of US&nbsp;163 back to match the national definition in 2004, the portion north of Bluff remained unsigned.<ref name=resolutions163/><ref name=mapguy>{{cite web|url=http://www.usends.com/Focus/Crescent/index.html|title=Images of current and historical signs at junction of US&nbsp;163, US&nbsp;191, US&nbsp;6, US&nbsp;50 and I-70 at Crescent Junction|author=Dale Sanderson|accessdate=May 1, 2008}}</ref> In October 2008, UDOT requested and obtained approval to truncate US&nbsp;163 to the junction with US&nbsp;191 resolving the discrepency.<ref name=aashto/>
 
==Junction list==