Alabama State Route 20 Article

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State Route 20 marker

State Route 20
Route information
Maintained by ALDOT
Length73.978 mi [1] (119.056 km)
Major junctions
West end SR 69 northwest of Florence
  Natchez Trace Parkway northwest of Florence
US 43 / US 72 / SR 13 / SR 17 at Florence

US 72 Alt. / SR 157 at Muscle Shoals
SR 67 at Decatur
US 31 at Decatur
East end
I-65 / I-565 / US 72 Alt. at Mooresville
Counties Lauderdale, Colbert, Lawrence, Morgan, Limestone
Highway system
  • Alabama Highways
I-20 SR 21

State Route 20 (SR 20) is a 73.978-mile-long (119.056 km) state highway in the northern part of the U.S. state of Alabama. It travels from the Tennessee state line, where it continues as ( Tennessee State Route 69, northwest of Florence, east to Interstate 65 (I-65), east of Decatur. It crosses the Tennessee River at Florence (with US 43, US 72, SR 17, and SR 157) and also at Decatur (with US 31 and US 72 Alt.)

US 72 Alt. follows SR 20 from the intersection with US 72 at Muscle Shoals to I-65 east of Decatur, the entire stretch being four-laned.

Route Description

Alabama State Route 20 begins in Waterloo at the Tennessee state line. It junctions with the Natchez Trace Parkway and enters Florence. In Florence, the route junctions with AL-133. It continues south to parallel the Tennessee River, heading east for just a mile as Coffee Road before junctioning with U.S. 72 and U.S. 43 at a Parclo. It crosses the Tennessee River with the two routes, AL-17, and AL-13. This is a quintuple concurrency.

The routes enter Colbert County and Tuscumbia. The routes junction with AL-184. They pass by a few restaurants and a Planet Pepsi building near this junction. The routes reach Muscle Shoals. Here, U.S. 43/AL-17/AL-13 and U.S. 72 turn to the south and west respectively, while AL-20 turns east with U.S. 72 Alt.. The two routes junction with Alabama State Route 133 again and AL-157. This is the southern terminus of AL-133 and the continuation of AL-157. The two routes split off at Leighton. AL-157 continues south to Moulton and Cullman along the right-of-way. U.S. 72 Alt. and AL-20 turn to the direct east/west and eventually enter Lawrence County.

The routes enter Town Creek and junction with AL-101. The routes continue to Courtland and then junction with AL-33. This stretch of road is mostly flat. The routes continue east to the Morgan County line and enter Trinity.

The stretch between here and AL-67 is well-known for containing multiple industrial plants, such as 3M and Nucor. The routes junction with AL-67 and gain the Corridor V name. The routes pass through Decatur, junctioning with U.S. 31. This junction is limited because there is no direct connection between U.S. 31 north and AL-20 west. Traffic making that connection must use a short side road onto a short one-way street, which leads to AL-20. The routes continue north across the Tennessee River again and enter Limestone County.

The routes lose U.S. 31 at a Directional-T Interchange (road) and continue east to I-65. I-565 begins at this point. U.S. 72 Alt. continues along I-565 to Huntsville, and this is the end of Alabama State Route 20.


SR 20 was started when Alabama renumbered SR 41 with a statewide renumbering in 1929. The original route passed from US 72 at Muscle Shoals to US 31 at Decatur. This portion was named the Joe Wheeler Highway, and markers commemorating this are still located on East (Decatur at Railroad/Church Streets) and West (Tuscumbia-Old Lee Highway) ends. In 1931, SR 20 replaced SR 2 following US 72 west to the Mississippi state line west of Margerum, and in 1936 it was extended east to Huntsville.

1957 saw many changes to SR 20. It was replaced again by SR 2 along US 72 to the Mississippi state line, and, in turn, SR 20 replaced SR 2 traveling north to Florence and northwest of Florence to the Tennessee state line, forming a route popularly known as New Savannah Highway. SR 20 was also realigned to a much more direct route between Decatur and Huntsville, bypassing the town of Madison.

Beginning in the early 1980s, the eastern terminus of SR 20 began retreating to the west. The original terminus was at Clinton Avenue and US 231/ US 431 in downtown Huntsville. With the construction of I-565 in the early 1990s along the route of SR 20 east of I-65, SR 20 was slowly pulled back to its current terminus at the junction of I-65 and becomes I-565.

Major intersections

CountyLocationmi [1]kmDestinationsNotes
Lauderdale0.0000.000 SR 69 north – SavannahTennessee state line
7.64512.303 Natchez Trace ParkwayInterchange
17.16227.620 SR 133 south (Cox Creek Parkway) to US 43 north / US 72 east – Athens, Joe Wheeler State Park
Florence22.04835.483 US 43 north / US 72 east / SR 13 north / SR 17 north ( SR-2 east) – Port of FlorenceWestern end of US 43/US 72/SR 2/SR 13/SR 17 concurrency; interchange
Tennessee River22.79536.685 O'Neal Bridge
Colbert SheffieldMuscle Shoals line24.47539.389 SR 184 east (Second Street) – Muscle Shoals, Sheffield
TuscumbiaMuscle Shoals line27.80344.745 US 43 south / SR 13 south / SR 17 south / US 72 west ( SR 2) – CorinthEastern end of US 43/US 72 concurrency; western end of US 72 Alt. concurrency
29.87048.071 SR 133 north / SR 157 north (Wilson Dam Road) / CR 57 south – AirportWestern end of SR 157 concurrency
32.18951.803 SR 157 south – Moulton, CullmanEastern end of SR 157 concurrency; no left turn westbound
Lawrence Town Creek43.10369.368 SR 101 – Lexington, Hatton, Wheeler Dam, Joe Wheeler State Park
Courtland50.60981.447 SR 33 south – Moulton, Courtland Historic District
Morgan65.780105.863 SR 67 south ( Beltline Road)
Decatur69.147111.281 US 31 south (6th Avenue / SR 3) – HartselleWestern end of US 31/SR 3 concurrency
68.484110.214 Steamboat Bill Memorial Bridges over Tennessee River
Limestone72.130116.082 US 31 north ( SR-3) – Athens, Calhoun Community CollegeEastern end of US 31/SR 3 concurrency; interchange
73.978119.056 I-65 – Nashville, Birmingham

I-565 east / US 72 Alt. east – Huntsville
Eastern terminus and signed as exits 1A (south) and 1B (north); I-65 north exit 340, south exit 340A-B
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

Historic routes

Several sections of Old Highway 20 still exist:

  • Lauderdale County Road 200 through Sullivans Crossroads, Central Heights, Lovelace and McGee Town, known as Old Savannah Highway.
  • Lauderdale County Road 14 from McGee Town to Florence
  • Colbert County Road 22 through Leighton.
  • Jefferson Street through Courtland
  • Old Trinity Road between Trinity and Decatur
  • Old Highway 20 through Mooresville – The section east of Mooresville is part of the 1957 alignment.
  • 1936 Alignment
    • Mooresville Road north of Mooresville through Belle Mina to Old Highway 20.
    • Old Highway 20 east through Greenbrier to County Line Road.
    • County Line Road north to Palmer Road.
    • Palmer Road east to Downtown Madison.
    • Old Madison Pike from Madison to I-565 exit 15.
  • 1957 Alignment
    • Madison Boulevard from I-565 exit 5 to I-565 exit 13.
  • Governors Drive in Huntsville from I-565 exit 17 to Clinton Avenue.
  • Clinton Avenue in Huntsville to US 231/US 431, Memorial Parkway.

Corridor V

Corridor V is part of the Appalachian Development Highway System and follows the path of SR 20 between Decatur and the eastern Terminus at I-65.

See also


  1. ^ a b "Mileposts/General Highway Maps". Alabama Department of Transportation. Archived from the original on July 27, 2011. Retrieved August 27, 2011.

External links

Route map:

KML is from Wikidata