Interstate 44

Overview

I-44 is not one of the longest interstates, but still tallies an impressive 633 miles as it makes its way from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma to St. Louis, Missouri. It crosses a number of fantastic small to mid-size Midwestern cities along its route, and connects to some major east-west and north-south interstates, too. Though its main purpose is a transit route across the southern mid-west, there is still a lot to see and do along this highway.

How long is I-44?

As noted above, I-44 is approximately 633 miles long. This makes it the 29th longest interstate in the US Highway System.

Where does I-44 end?

The western edge of the I-44 ends in Oklahoma City about 5 miles north of the downtown area, where it connects to I-35 and flows into the John Kilpatrick Highway. The eastern edge terminates in Downtown St. Louis, just steps from the magnificent St. Louis Arch and the mighty Mississippi River. There, it connects to I-70 west heading towards Kansas City, and I-70 east which carries you over the Mississippi River into Illinois.

Map of I-44

Attractions and Things to Do near I-44

Although I-44 is somewhat smaller than the giant east-to-west and north-to-south interstates, there are still a great number of things to see and do along the way. It’s a great interstate to get off the beaten path as well, where you can find hidden gems in cities like Branson, Missouri. Here are just a sample of fun things you might find along this Midwest highway:

  • Gateway Arch Riverboats
    St. Louis, MO
  • St Louis Arch and Museum
    St. Louis, MO
  • City Museum
    St. Louis, MO
  • Anheuser Busch Brewery and Tours
    St. Louis, MO
  • Six Flags St. Louis
    Eureka, MO
  • Johnny Morris’ Wonders of Wildlife National Museum & Aquarium
    Springfield, MO
  • Silver Dollar City*
    Branson, MO
  • Branson Landing*
    Branson, MO
  • Arboretum and Linnaeus Teaching Gardens
    Tulsa, OK
  • A Gathering Place for Tulsa
    Tulsa, OK
  • Oklahoma Aquarium
    Tulsa, OK
  • Tulsa Zoo
    Tulsa, OK
  • Riverwalk Crossing
    Tulsa, OK
  • Science Museum Oklahoma
    Oklahoma City, OK
  • Bricktown
    Oklahoma City, OK
  • Myriad Botanical Gardens
    Oklahoma City, OK
  • National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
    Oklahoma City, OK

* 50 minutes Off I-44 *

When was I-44 started and completed?

A portion of I-44 existed before the road was designated an interstate. In Oklahoma, a road called the Turner Turnpike already ran between Oklahoma City and Tulsa. This would eventually become a part of I-44.

After the Federal Aid Highway Act was signed in 1956, Missouri conceived the idea for Interstate 44, which would run next to the famous Route 66. During construction of the road, Missouri state officials lobbied the federal government to name it Interstate 66, but federal officials denied that request. Construction of I-44 was completed across Missouri in 1972. Sadly, this ended the usefulness of Route 66, but it also opened the door for millions of travelers to reach the plains and southwest.

States I-44 travels through

I-44 travels through two states. It barely misses entering Kansas by about 500 feet, and also falls a few hundred feet short of entering Illinois on its eastern edge.

  • Missouri
  • Oklahoma

I-44 Major Cities

There are a number of mid-size to larger cities Interstate 44 passes through on its journey. These include:

  • St. Louis, Missouri
  • Springfield, Missouri
  • Joplin, Missouri
  • Tulsa, Oklahoma
  • Oklahoma City, OK

Major Connections & Interchanges

Because of its location in the United States, and its diagonal stretch across the Midwest, I-44 connects to a number of large interstates. Each year, a considerable amount of goods and travelers reach a vast amount of the continental United States by utilizing this road.

  • St Louis, MO
    I-55 N to Springfield, IL
    I-55 S to Memphis, TN
    I-70 W to Kansas City, KS
    I-70 E to Indianapolis, IN
  • Joplin, MO
    I-49 N to Kansas City, KS
    I-49 S to Bentonville, AR
  • Oklahoma City, OK
    I-35 N to Wichita, Kansas
    I-35 S to Dallas, TX
    I-40 E to Little Rock, Arkansas
    I-40 W to Albequerque, NM