The Three Worst Houston Freeway Interchanges

UPDATE September 23, 2014: Good news: the interchange that took the top spot in this list is getting a makeover. The interchange where Highway 59 and Interstate 45 South merge going in to downtown is getting a two-year, multimillion-dollar makeover.

Last week when I wrote about the most treacherous on ramps to freeways, many of you suggested connections between freeways as possible additions. Since I was sticking with entrances from side streets, I skipped out on freeway interchanges, but there are three in particular that are such a mess, they deserve some attention.

At times, it feels as if our freeway system is just a massive tangle of concrete with little rhyme or reason. But little compares to where these arteries meet. I often wonder if the architect of these connections was inspired by an M.C. Escher painting, the design of roller coasters (ever exited Interstate 10 to the Beltway and felt as if you were 100 stories in the air?) or maybe he was just insane. Whatever the case, we are left with some of the most ridiculous and confusing interchanges in some of the city's most heavily trafficked areas.

There are certainly plenty of good examples of this spread out all over the city. But these three are the absolutely worst, a mixture of poor design and heavy use.

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Jeff Balke is a writer, editor, photographer, tech expert and native Houstonian. He has written for a wide range of publications and co-authored the official 50th anniversary book for the Houston Rockets.
Contact: Jeff Balke