Kentucky reportedly has more miles of freeways outside the Interstate system than any other U.S. state except California. This is a list of Kentucky's state parkways - most of which are entirely freeways of at least 4 lanes. In other words, most are almost up to Interstate standards, though a few may not qualify for reasons like the median being too high. All parkways were once toll. The bonds used to pay for building the parkways were gradually paid off, causing the tollbooths to be closed one parkway at a time. This process was finally completed in 2006, and all parkways are now free of cost to weary travelers.

State parkways carry unsigned, "secret" route numbers in the 9000s.

Bert T. Combs Mountain Parkway
KY 9000

BEGIN: I-64, 2 mi from Winchester
Clark
Names:
   Bert T Combs-Mountain Pkwy
11.913 mi
Powell
Names:
   Bert T Combs-Mountain Pkwy
24.087 mi
Wolfe
Names:
   Bert T Combs-Mountain Pkwy
6.853 mi
END: KY 9009, 1 mi from Campton

☛ Though 75 miles in total, at mile 42.853 - 0.408 mile east of Spur KY 15 near Campton - the Bert changes from 4-lane to 2-lane and the ''secret'' designation changes from KY 9000 to KY 9009. The 2-lane part is actually monikered the Bert T. Combs Mountain Parkway Extension.

☛ The Bert was known as just the Mountain Parkway before being named for Combs in 1976.

☛ This parkway was ''secret'' KY 9000 and 9009 before being renumbered KY 114 in April 1985; then KY 402 in August 1985; and then KY 9000 and 9009 again in 1990.

☛ The Bert has been labeled KY 402 on some commercial maps but I never saw it signed as KY 402.

☛ The only spot I know of on the official county maps where the Bert was marked as KY 402 was the inset for the village of Slade (''Run runaway...'') - where you have to get off at the KY 11 exit to use the rest area.

☛ The Bert opened in 1963 and was a toll road until the mid-1980s.

☛ Kentucky may be the only state that has had both an Ernie and a Bert as governor.

Wendell H. Ford Western Kentucky Parkway
WK 9001

BEGIN: 1 mi from Oak Hill
Hopkins
Names:
   Wendell H Ford-Western Kentucky Pkwy
5.098 mi
Muhlenberg
Names:
   Wendell H Ford-Western Kentucky Pkwy
22.251 mi
Ohio
Names:
   Wendell H Ford-Western Kentucky Pkwy
21.869 mi
Butler
Names:
   Wendell H Ford-Western Kentucky Pkwy
0.889 mi
Grayson
Names:
   Wendell H Ford-Western Kentucky Pkwy
31.216 mi
Hardin
Names:
   Wendell H Ford-Western Kentucky Pkwy
17.147 mi
END: KY 61, 2 mi from Elizabethtown

☛ Most of the Western Kentucky Parkway opened in 1963.

☛ Tolls were removed in 1987.

☛ This parkway ran from near Eddyville to Elizabethtown.

☛ Part of this road near its Eddyville end opened in 1968 and was once ''secret'' KY 9010.

☛ Named for Ford in 1998.

☛ The portion from I-24 to the Edward Breathitt Parkway became I-69 in 2011.

☛ This parkway can serve as part of an alternate route from Memphis to Louisville.

Martha Layne Collins Bluegrass Parkway
BG 9002

BEGIN: 1 mi from Indian Hills
Hardin
Names:
   Martha Layne Collins-Bluegrass Pkwy
8.837 mi
Nelson
Names:
   Martha Layne Collins-Bluegrass Pkwy
30.430 mi
Washington
Names:
   Martha Layne Collins-Bluegrass Pkwy
5.540 mi
Anderson
Names:
   Martha Layne Collins-Bluegrass Pkwy
7.508 mi
Mercer
Names:
   Martha Layne Collins-Bluegrass Pkwy
3.972 mi
Anderson
Names:
   Martha Layne Collins-Bluegrass Pkwy
5.660 mi
Woodford
Names:
   Martha Layne Collins-Bluegrass Pkwy
9.187 mi
END: US 60, 1 mi from Gaybourn

☛ The Blue Grass Parkway opened in 1965.

☛ The tolls were removed in 1991.

☛ This parkway was named for Collins in 2003.

☛ The 1980s plan to extend I-66 into Kentucky would have involved the Blue Grass Parkway. The I-66 plan was later moved to southern Kentucky.

Julian M. Carroll Purchase Parkway
JC 9003

BEGIN: 1 mi from Riceville
Fulton
Names:
   Julian M Carroll Pkwy
3.434 mi
Hickman
Names:
   Julian M Carroll Pkwy
4.918 mi
Graves
Names:
   Julian M Carroll Pkwy
12.933 mi
END: I-69, 2 mi from Mayfield

☛ The Purchase Parkway opened in 1966.

☛ Tolls removed in 1992.

☛ For some reason it was later officially referred to as the Jackson Purchase Parkway.

☛ In 2001 it was named for former Gov. Julian Carroll. (And then it really got pooped upon. Sorry, folks, that's an inside joke!)

☛ Julian Carroll had a mullet.

Edward T. Breathitt Pennyrile Parkway
EB 9004

BEGIN: I-24, 1 mi from Beverly
Christian
Names:
   Edward T Breathitt Pkwy
28.095 mi
Hopkins
Names:
   Edward T Breathitt Pkwy
6.161 mi
END: 1 mi from Oak Hill

☛ The Pennyrile Parkway opened in 1969 and lost its tolls in 1992.

☛ The road was named for a popular former governor in 2000.

☛ For years mile numbers on this parkway started at 7 - as there were 7 more miles proposed to link to I-24 but not yet built. At the time the road started at US 41A. In 2008 it was finally extended to Byp US 68.

☛ Completed to I-24 in 2011.

Audubon Parkway
AU 9005

BEGIN: 1 mi from Weaverton
Henderson
Names:
   Audubon Pkwy
15.883 mi
Daviess
Names:
   Audubon Pkwy
7.558 mi
END: 2 mi from Broad Acres

☛ Perhaps the most seldom traveled parkway, the Audubon opened in December 1970 and links Henderson with Owensboro.

☛ Owensboro officials have petitioned to have the Audubon numbered as I-369.

☛ Tolls removed in 2006.

Hal Rogers Parkway
HR 9006

BEGIN: KY 80, 1 mi from Pittsburg
Laurel
Names:
   Hal Rogers Pkwy
10.593 mi
Clay
Names:
   Hal Rogers Pkwy
25.336 mi
Leslie
Names:
   Hal Rogers Pkwy
15.097 mi
Perry
Names:
   Hal Rogers Pkwy
8.062 mi
END: KY 80, 1 mi from Clemons

☛ Opened in 1971 as the Daniel Boone Parkway.

☛ Most of this road is only 2 lanes and thus is not up to Interstate standards.

☛ Though most of this parkway is a 2-lane freeway the part that runs along the north side of London is not a freeway.

☛ Even along the parkway's freeway section there are at least 2 at-grade junctions (not counting several near the Hazard end).

☛ Tolls were removed in 2003.

☛ Also in 2003 the road was renamed for Hal Rogers - replacing the name of a frontiersman who helped settle Kentucky with that of a sitting right-wing congressperson. The renaming generated a firestorm of complaints.

William H. Natcher Parkway
WN 9007

BEGIN: US 231, 2 mi from Plano
Warren
Names:
   William H Natcher Pkwy
20.246 mi
Butler
Names:
   William H Natcher Pkwy
16.897 mi
Ohio
Names:
   William H Natcher Pkwy
24.410 mi
Daviess
Names:
   William H Natcher Pkwy
10.711 mi
END: Brook Hill Estates

☛ Opened as the Green River Parkway in 1972.

☛ Renamed for the late Democratic congressman in 1994.

☛ Includes what is probably the longest stretch between exits on any Kentucky freeway: 23 miles between Hartford and Owensboro. (I assume no new exits have been built on that stretch recently.)

☛ Tolls were finally removed in 2006.

☛ Extended from I-65 south to US 231 in 2012.

Louie B. Nunn Cumberland Parkway
LN 9008

BEGIN: 2 mi from Apple Grove
Barren
Names:
   Louie B Nunn Pkwy
22.357 mi
Metcalfe
Names:
   Louie B Nunn Pkwy
13.802 mi
Adair
Names:
   Louie B Nunn Pkwy
21.632 mi
Russell
Names:
   Louie B Nunn Pkwy
14.296 mi
Pulaski
Names:
   Louie B Nunn Pkwy
16.289 mi
END: 2 mi from Ringgold

☛ The Cumberland Parkway was mostly open in 1972; the rest opened in 1973.

☛ It was named for former Gov. Louie B. Nunn in 2000.

☛ The toll was removed in 2003.

☛ Though this route is now all freeway, at one time it effectively became a divided surface road for a mile at its Somerset end. Now it's been rerouted onto a new freeway stretch north of town.

☛ Nunn was known as Nickel Louie because he instituted an unpopular 5% sales tax. Aren't Republicans supposed to be the party of lower taxes?

Bert T. Combs Mountain Parkway Extension
KY 9009

BEGIN: KY 9000, 1 mi from Campton
Wolfe
Names:
   Bert T Combs-Mountain Pkwy Ext
14.867 mi
Morgan
Names:
   Bert T Combs-Mountain Pkwy Ext
5.403 mi
Magoffin
Names:
   Bert T Combs-Mountain Pkwy Ext
   Bert T Combs-Mountain Pkwy
   Bert T Combs-Mountain Pkwy Ext
12.122 mi
END: KY 3048, 1 mi from Salyersville

☛ This is the 2-lane stretch of the Bert - which is limited access like the 4-lane stretch.

☛ Some old maps show a proposed Mountain Parkway splitting up near Campton with 2 legs going to Pikeville and Whitesburg.

☛ Recent plans call for extending this parkway to Prestonsburg, making the entire road 4 lanes, and reinstating tolls to pay for it.

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