|Length||1,074 mi[ citation needed] (1,728 km)|
|West end||US 59 / US 71 at Wickes, Ark.|
US 278 Bus. in Hilton Head, SC
|States||Arkansas, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina|
U.S. Route 278 is a parallel route of U.S. Route 78. It currently runs for 1,074 miles (1,728 km) from Hilton Head Island, South Carolina to Wickes, Arkansas at U.S. Route 71/ U.S. Route 59. It is longer than its parent highway, US 78. US 278 passes through the states of South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, and Arkansas. This highway passes through the cities and towns of Augusta, Covington, Atlanta, Powder Springs, Hiram, Dallas, Rockmart, and Cedartown, Georgia; Gadsden and Cullman, Alabama; Tupelo, Oxford, and Greenville, Mississippi; and Monticello and Hope, Arkansas.
U.S. 278 passes through the places where many colleges, universities, and technical institutes are located, including the Georgia Institute of Technology, Georgia State University, and many others in Atlanta, Georgia; the Augusta University; the University of Mississippi, and the University of Arkansas at Monticello.
US 278 begins at an intersection with U.S. Route 59/ U.S. Route 71 in the town of Wickes in southwestern Arkansas.  From Wickes, US 278 continues eastward near Gillham Lake to an overlap with US 70 through Dierks.  Continuing south, US 278 passes the Ebenezer Campground and has an officially designated exception with Highway 26 of 0.09 miles (0.14 km) at Center Point very near the Adam Boyd House.  Further south the route serves as the northern terminus of Highway 355 near the Russey-Murray House and it continues south to enter Nashville. The route begins an overlap with U.S. Route 371 and later Highway 27 upon entering Nashville, where it passes the Howard County Courthouse, the Nashville Post Office, the Nashville Commercial Historic District, the First Presbyterian Church, and the Nashville American Legion Building, all properties on the National Register of Historic Places. 
Entering Hempstead County, the highway winds through rural areas to Ozan and the Washington Confederate Monument in Washington, before meeting US 278 Business (US 278B) outside Hope.  The highway crosses over Interstate 30 shortly after entering the city limits and continues along Bill Clinton Drive, forming a concurrency with Highway 29 and Highway 32. US 278/AR 29/AR 32 intersect US 67 in east Hope. South of this junction AR 29 splits and continues south as Bill Clinton Drive with US 278/AR 32 continuing southeast. Further along this route, Highway 32 turns southeast to Willisville and US 278 runs toward Camden.
The route intersects Highway 53 in rural Nevada County, has an officially designated exception with US 371 in Rosston, and has a junction with Highway 57 upon entering Ouachita County.   Highway 278 passes the Two Bayou Methodist Church and Cemetery and the Bragg House before entering Camden. In the city, US 278 intersects Highway 24 before it meets US 278B and US 79B prior to overlapping US 79. Highway 278 breaks from US 79 near Harrell Field shortly before entering East Camden. Highway 278 continues into Calhoun County past the Dunn House into Hampton, where it passes the Calhoun County Courthouse prior to a junction with US 371.  The east edge of town brings an intersection with Highway 274 as US 278 continues to Harrell and Highway 160 before entering Bradley County. Aside from Banks, where US 278 has a junction with Highway 275, the route runs through rural country until Warren, where US 278 almost entirely bypasses the city to the south while US 278B runs downtown, including a brief overlap with US 63B. US 278 has an intersection with US 63/ AR 8 along the southern edge of Warren before serving as the eastern terminus for US 278B. Further east the highway intersects Highway 172 which gives access to the Warren Prairie Natural Area just east of the Drew County line. 
The route continues to Monticello to McGehee, where it meets U.S. Route 65. US 278 overlaps US 65 southward for 16 miles (26 km) until they separate in Lake Village. There, US 65 splits off and US 278 overlaps U.S. Route 82 east to the Mississippi River, where US 82 and US 278 cross into Mississippi.
US 82 and US 278 go through Greenville to Leland, where US 278 separates from US 82 at U.S. Route 61. US 278 then joins US 61 northward through Cleveland before splitting in Clarksdale. East of Clarksdale, it overlaps Mississippi Highway 6 through Batesville, Oxford, and Pontotoc before reaching Tupelo. At Tupelo, MS 6 separates from US 278 while US 278 overlaps U.S. Route 45 south to New Wren. From New Wren, US 278 continues east through Amory before entering Alabama.
U.S. 278 enters Alabama between Greenwood Springs, Mississippi, and Sulligent, Alabama. As in Georgia, this and all U.S routes are partnered with state routes; however, there are few instances throughout the state where the state route number is posted. From the Mississippi state line to Guin, U.S. 278 is paired with State Route 118. From Hamilton to the Georgia state line, U.S. 278 is paired with State Route 74.
U.S. 278 junctions U.S. Route 431 at Gadsden. The two routes overlap until they split at Attalla. After a reconfiguration of 3rd St SW at Main Ave SW to connect directly with 4th St SW in Cullman, U.S. 278 no longer briefly overlaps U.S. Route 31 for a block. U.S. 278 overlaps U.S. Route 43 between Hamilton and Guin. Prior to the completion of Corridor X (Future I-22), these two routes also overlapped U.S. Route 78 between these two towns, with East U.S. 78 travelling in the same direction as West U.S. 278.
In Atlanta, it (U.S. 278) runs along Donald Lee Hollowell Parkway ( Bankhead Highway), North Avenue, briefly along Piedmont Road and Ponce de Leon Avenue. Outside the Perimeter, U.S. 278 runs along Covington Highway. In Lithonia, Georgia, at the intersection with Turner Hill Road ( S.R. 124), U.S. 278 merges with Interstate 20 for 15 miles (24 km). It leaves I-20 at exit 90, in Covington, Georgia.
U.S. 278 is co-signed with a state route for its entire length in Georgia, as are all U.S. highways in Georgia. From the Alabama line into Lithia Springs, Georgia, it is co-signed with S.R. 6. From Lithia Springs through Atlanta, it is merged with U.S. Route 78/ S.R. 8. In Atlanta, the federal highway merges further with other highways including S.R. 10 and U.S. Route 23 before splitting off at Ponce de Leon Ave. and East Lake Road near Decatur. In Avondale Estates, Georgia, S.R. 12 is paired with U.S. 278, all the way into Thomson, Georgia. There, the federal route merges with U.S. 78/S.R. 10 to the South Carolina line.
After crossing the Savannah River, U.S. 278 bypasses North Augusta, South Carolina en route to Beech Island and Johnson Crossroads. It then winds through a corner of the Savannah River Site. The route then continues onward through the towns of Allendale, Fairfax, Hampton, Varnville, Ridgeland, and Hardeeville where it meets I-95. U.S. 278 shares the route between Ridgeland and Hardeeville with U.S. 17. Prior to the construction of Exit 8 on Interstate 95 (which provides direct access to southern Beaufort County), U.S. 278 went from Ridgeland through Old House and Okatie toward Bluffton, along present-day state routes 336, 462, and 170.
Upon reaching Hardeeville, the route heads eastward toward the Atlantic with major new developments lining the spine of the road from Hardeeville through Sun City and Bluffton before crossing over the bridge to Hilton Head Island. U.S. 278 ends at U.S. 278 Business on the southern portion of Hilton Head Island, just outside Sea Pines Plantation. Old U.S. 278 was routed along what is now U.S. 278 Business until 1998, when a new toll road, dubbed the Cross Island Parkway was built. U.S. 278 was routed along the new parkway. The completion of the "Gateway to Hilton Head", a direct expressway connection from the north side to the south side of the island, has caused a great amount of commercial and residential development along the road.
Until early 2005, U.S. 278 was only signed in Mississippi from the Alabama state line to U.S. Route 45 west of Amory. US 278 in western Alabama used to be routed through Haleyville by what are now Alabama highways 195 and 129.
- US 59 / US 71 in Wickes
- US 70 north-northeast of Dierks. The highways travel concurrently to Dierks.
- US 371 west of Nashville. The highways travel concurrently to Nashville.
- I‑30 in Hope
- US 67 in Hope
- US 371 in Rosston. The highways travel concurrently through Rosston.
- US 79 in Camden. The highways travel concurrently to west-northwest of East Camden.
- US 167 in Hampton
- US 63 in Warren
- Future I‑69 east of Warren
- US 425 in Monticello
- Future I‑69 west of Monticello
- Future I‑69 northwest of McGehee. The highways will travel concurrently to Clarksdale, Mississippi.
- US 65 / US 165 in McGehee. US 65/US 278 travels concurrently to south-southeast of Lake Village. US 165/US 278 travels concurrently to Dermott.
- US 82 in Lake Village. The highways travel concurrently to east of Leland, Mississippi.
- US 61 / US 82 east of Leland. US 61/US 278 travels concurrently to Clarksdale.
- US 49 in Clarksdale. The highways travel concurrently through Clarksdale.
- Future I‑69 in Clarksdale
- US 51 in Batesville
- I‑55 in Batesville
- US 45 on the Verona– Tupelo city line. The highways travel concurrently to north-northwest of New Wren.
- US 43 in Guin. The highways travel concurrently to Hamilton.
- I‑22 / US 78 in Hamilton
- I‑65 in Cullman
- US 31 in Cullman
- US 231 south-southwest of Summit
- US 431 northwest of Attalla. The highways travel concurrently to Gadsden.
- US 11 in Attalla. The highways travel concurrently through Attalla.
- I‑59 in Attalla
- US 411 in Gadsden
- US 27 in Cedartown. The highways travel concurrently through Cedartown.
- US 78 in Lithia Springs. The highways travel concurrently to Druid Hills.
- I‑285 in Atlanta
- US 19 / US 41 in Atlanta. The highways travel concurrently through Atlanta.
- US 19 / US 29 / US 41 in Atlanta. US 29/US 278 travels concurrently to Druid Hills.
- US 23 in Atlanta. The highways travel concurrently to Druid Hills.
- I‑285 in Belvedere Park
- I‑20 southeast of Lithonia. The highways travel concurrently to Covington.
- I‑20 in Social Circle
- US 129 / US 441 in Madison. The highways travel concurrently to northeast of Madison.
- I‑20 in Barnett
- US 78 southeast of Thomson. The highways travel concurrently to Clearwater, South Carolina.
- US 221 in Harlem
- I‑520 in Augusta
- US 1 in Augusta. The highways travel concurrently to Clearwater, South Carolina.
- US 25 in Augusta. The highways travel concurrently to North Augusta, South Carolina.
- South Carolina
- I‑520 in North Augusta
- US 301 in Allendale. The highways travel concurrently through Allendale.
- US 321 in Fairfax
- US 601 in Hampton. The highways travel concurrently through Hampton.
- US 17 in Ridgeland. The highways travel concurrently to Hardeeville.
US 278 Bus. in Hilton Head Island.
- General Highway Map, Polk County, Arkansas (PDF) (Map). 1:62500. Cartography by Planning and Research Division. Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department. 2000. Retrieved December 28, 2011.
- General Highway Map, Howard County, Arkansas (PDF) (Map). 1:62500. Cartography by Planning and Research Division. Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department. 2000. Retrieved December 28, 2011.
- State Highway Route and Section Map, Howard County, Arkansas (PDF) (Map). 1:62500. Cartography by Planning and Research Division. Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department. Retrieved December 28, 2011.
- National Park Service (2009-03-13). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.
- General Highway Map, Hempstead County, Arkansas (PDF) (Map). 1:62500. Cartography by Planning and Research Division. Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department. 2000. Retrieved December 28, 2011.
- General Highway Map, Nevada County, Arkansas (PDF) (Map). 1:62500. Cartography by Planning and Research Division. Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department. 2011. Retrieved December 31, 2011.
- General Highway Map, Ouachita County, Arkansas (PDF) (Map). 1:62500. Cartography by Planning and Research Division. Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department. 2008. Retrieved December 31, 2011.
- General Highway Map, Calhoun County, Arkansas (PDF) (Map). 1:62500. Cartography by Planning and Research Division. Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department. 1999. Retrieved January 9, 2012.
- General Highway Map, Bradley County, Arkansas (PDF) (Map). 1:62500. Cartography by Planning and Research Division. Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department. 2008. Retrieved January 9, 2012.
- Minutes of the Meeting of the Arkansas State Highway Commission, August 6, 1997 (p. 963): "WHEREAS, the State of Mississippi has expressed interest in extending U. S. 278, which presently ends at Tupelo, westward into Arkansas on a temporary location, utilizing the U. S. 82 river crossing, with an ultimate alignment over the future Great River Bridge and connecting roadways;"
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to U.S. Route 278.|
- U.S. Route 278 in South Carolina (Mapmikey's South Carolina Highways Page)
- Endpoints of U.S. Highway 278
|Browse numbered routes|
|← AR 277||AR||AR 279 →|
|← I-269||MS||MS 301 →|
|← SR 277||AL||SR 279 →|
|← SR 277||GA||SR 279 →|
|← SC 277||SC||SC 279 →|