On June 29th, 1956, the Federal Highway Aid Act of 1956 was signed into law on the Federal Level. The Federal Highway Aid Act of 1956 was the genesis point of the Interstate Highway System and established the corridor Interstate 95 in Delaware. Ultimately the planned routing of Interstate 95 in Delaware was selected during 1957 and incorporated the planned Freeway from Wilmington to the Pennsylvania State Line. A new corridor from Wilmington south to the Maryland State Line was selected which was initially planned as a toll-free Interstate segment. Federal funding was not available to complete the Wilmington-Maryland State Line corridor of Interstate 95 until 1967 which necessitated the issuance of bonds to construct it as the tolled Delaware Turnpike.
Construction of the Delaware Turnpike segment of Interstate 95 commenced during 1958 and would be dedicated on November 15, 1963. The Delaware Turnpike was dedicated by President John F. Kennedy, Delaware Governor Elbert N. Carvel and Maryland Governor J. Millard Tawes. Following the assassination of John F. Kennedy, the Delaware Turnpike was renamed in his honor during December 1963.
Construction of Interstate 95 north from the Christina River Interchange would begin during 1964. The construction of Interstate 95 north of the Christina River was planned as a free facility and would result in 360-370 homes in Wilmington being demolished. The segment of Interstate 95 north of the Christina River was completed by November 1, 1968. The opening through Wilmington marked the completion of Interstate 95 Delaware. Delaware was the third state to complete their full mileage of Interstate 95.
On June 28, 1978, the AASHTO approved realigning Interstate 95 onto Interstate 495. Existing Interstate 95 through Wilmington was requested to be designated as Interstate 595. The justification for moving Interstate 95 to Interstate 495 was the higher capacity of the then new freeway bypass which had been completed during 1977. A secondary justification is noted to be the reconstruction of Interstate 95 through Wilmington. The designation of existing Interstate 95 through Wilmington as Interstate 595 was deferred by the AASHTO in favor of designating a suggested even numbered three-digit Interstate.
What had been Interstate 95 through Wilmington was approved to be signed as Interstate 195 and Interstate 395 by the AASHTO on October 27, 1978. Interstate 395 was to be designated from US Route 202 in Wilmington to what had been the Interstate 495 interchange near the Pennsylvania State Line. Interstate 195 was to be designated from what was the southern Interstate 495 interchange to Delaware Route 141 in Wilmington.
Interstate 195 and Interstate 395 through Wilmington were approved by the AASHTO to be renumbered to Interstate 895 on June 26, 1979.
Interstate 95 was redesignated along the corridor of Interstate 895 by the AASHTO on November 15, 1980. Likewise, the corridor Interstate 495 was restored to what had been briefly designated as Interstate 95. The justification for restoring the corridor of Interstate 95 was that the project through Wilmington had been completed.
On December 8, 1984, the AASHTO approved a request to extend US Route 202 concurrent with Interstate 95 through Wilmington to the Delaware Route 141 interchange. Previously terminus of US Route 202 had been truncated from US Route 13 out of downtown Wilmington to Interstate 95 during 1970. The new terminus of US Route 202 was located at US Route 13 near New Castle
Part 2; a drive on Interstate 95 in Delaware
South of Boothwyn and Linwood Interstate 95 enters Delaware. Interstate 95 southbound reaches the northern Interstate 495 interchange at Exit 11. Interstate 95 within Delaware is still signed with sequential exit numbers instead of being mileage based. Traffic heading south towards downtown Delaware is directed to stay on Interstate 95.