Interchange of the Week
Monday, 11 June 2001
NY 24 & Meadowbrook Parkway, Uniondale
Mitchel Field
A full-size image (632 KB) is also available.

Orientation: The Meadowbrook Parkway runs from top left to bottom right. NY 24 runs along the Hempstead Turnpike from left to right at bottom. Charles Lindbergh Boulevard runs from the Meadowbrook Parkway at center, towards the Mitchel Field area at left. East Stewart Avenue is the east-west surface road at top, and it is intersected by Merchants Concourse. Merrick Avenue runs parallel to the Meadowbrook Parkway along the right edge of the photo (the stretch visible here, bordering Eisenhower Park, is officially named Korean War Veterans Memorial Drive).

The Mitchel Field area, a former military aviation installment, comprises Nassau Community College (top left), the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum (bottom left) and Mitchel Park. A fragment of an old airfield runway is clearly visible in this photo on the grounds of the college.

Exit numbers: Ext M3E in both directions on the Meadowbrook Parwkay is for Merchants Concourse, and Exit M3W is for East Stewart Avenue. Exit M4 is for NY 24 westbound to Hempstead, and also includes Charles Lindbergh Boulevard and a northbound-only ramp to Merrick Avenue (via East Stewart Avenue). Exit M5 is for NY 24 eastbound to East Meadow.

The interchange: Several discrete interchanges overlap in this complex, as is typical of highways all over Long Island where closely-spaced interchanges are commonplace. It is not unusual for a full or partial cloverleaf to overlap an adjacent interchange, or for a cloverleaf to be interrupted and extruded to accomodate two or more roadways. The interchange series depicted above is one example of this.

The interchange between the Meadowbrook Parkway and NY 24 is a full cloverleaf, half of which overlaps collector/distributor roads serving the Charles Lindbergh Boulevard interchange. This latter is a kind of half-cloverleaf (also similar to the "trumpet" design) providing access to and from the west only. The loop ramps of this interchange are highly compressed due to the proximity of the Meadowbrook Parkway to Merrick Avenue. Note also that the right turn channel from Charles Lindbergh Boulevard to Merrick Avenue takes the form of a slip ramp branching from the parkway loop ramp.

At the north end of the collector-distributor system, there are entrances and a northbound exit for East Stewart Avenue. These are more properly components of the parkway's next northward interchange, Exits M3E and M3W. Note that the southbound entrance ramp here, as well as that from Charles Lindbergh Boulevard, do not intersect the southbound collector/distributor road, but rather fly over it to merge directly with the Meadowbrook Parkway mainline. This is done to avoid close spacing between ramps intersecting the collector/distributor road.

Meadowbrook Parkway at Steve Anderson's
Mitchel Field historical information at Historic Hempstead Plains.

Len Pundt writes:
"Your new [2000] image includes a small piece of the ROW of the old Long Island Motor Parkway (LIMP). It shows as an east-west trace near and parallel to the extreme top edge of the image. It shows up better toward the right than the left. It passes just north of the curve of East Stewart Avenue as it proceeds through Eisenhower Park in the upper right corner of the image.

"There is another ROW visible in your image that some in the past have reported is the LIMP ROW. This shows as an east-west oriented trace just a little to the south, crossing the Meadowbrook at the curve (through Interchange M3E/W)."

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