Although the vehicles are much different, and the ride will be smoother and faster, participants in a transcontinental convoy will share the same ideals as their predecessors half a century ago. Participants in the convoy that began Thursday collectively are bringing national attention to the need for a modern, efficient transportation network to unite the United States.
Idaho will participate in the caravan of vehicles departing from Salt Lake City Monday as part of the 50th anniversary celebration of the national interstate highway system.
ITD Director Dave Ekern will be among the featured speakers at Monday’s sendoff from Sugarhouse Park in Salt Lake City. He joins John Njord, executive director of the Utah Department of Transportation, Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr., and Utah Lt. Gov. Gary Herbert.
Salt Lake City and Chicago are the convoy’s only
weekend stops. Delegates will assemble Saturday (June 17) for an informal
western dinner and awards presentation at This is the Place State Park.
It will include convoy participants, Utah business and construction
leaders, UDOT representatives, Utah legislators and Gov. Huntsman Jr.
A motorcycle brigade of 25 Utah Highway Patrol troopers will lead the procession; patrol cars also will escort the convoy to the Utah/Wyoming state line. Transportation officials from throughout the country will travel the entire distance and will be joined periodically by other state delegations along the mid-country march.
About 19 states will dispatch vehicles to various segments of the convoy, according to the American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials, which played a major role in organizing the 50th anniversary celebration.
The convoy will reach Washington D.C. on June 29, the 50th anniversary of the date President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed federal law formally establishing the interstate system.
To explore Idaho’s role in the interstate system and view historic Idaho interstate photographs, visit ITD’s 50th anniversary Web site at: http://www.itd.idaho.gov/50.Years/