Living near former State Road 334

Great light on an evening walk
Eastbound former State Road 334 near my home

I live in a neighborhood that is near two alignments of a former Indiana highway. One of the former alignments is the back way into my neighborhood.

State Road 334 connected US 421 (the Michigan Road) to what was once US 52 (the Lafayette Road) via Zionsville. At some point after I-65 was built and SR 334 slightly rerouted to accommodate it, SR 334 was truncated to end at I-65. In 2011, the state relinquished this road to Zionsville and Whitestown, the two towns through which it passes, and it ceased to be SR 334. Whitestown has only in the last ten years or so grown large enough to include this road.

Map courtesy Wikipedia user Omnedon

Connector highways like this one are typically numbered after a major highway that it serves. It would make more sense for this highway to be numbered 452, after US 52 — State Roads 152, 252, and 352 already exist elsewhere in Indiana. A highway numbered 334 would normally be related to US 34, which doesn’t exist in Indiana, or State Road 34, which did exist until it was renamed US 136. That road is a good distance away from here, however. Hard telling how SR 334 got its number.

I live near the west end of this former highway; I can easily see I-65 through my home’s west windows. Here’s what this end of former SR 334 looks like from above today — it’s the east-west road that curves gracefully through. Old US 52 is on the far left; note the roundabout, which was built in the last few years. I-65 is just east of it. SR 334 ended at US 52, but a county road continues westbound beyond it.

©2023 Vexcel Imaging, Microsoft

Here’s what this same area looked like in 1955, before I-65 was built. Notice how SR 334’s shape was very different. But if you compare to the map above, you can see that a short bit of the original alignment remains. In this image you can clearly see US 52 and an older alignment of US 52; I documented that alignment in this article.

This faint 1970 image shows the original double curve still intact. The first curve was removed some time after this, the road straightened to meet the newer alignment at a right angle.

Because I live here, and because I take pictures of random stuff while I test old cameras, I have a lot of photos of SR 334’s original alignment near my house. This eastbound photo is from about where that road ends at the back entrance to my neighborhood.

Old 334

A few years ago, a Toyota dealership was built on what used to be a field. As part of that project, the road was truncated at the back entrance to my neighborhood. Before that, it ran behind a few houses to where it met that field.

Toyota dealer

The project tore out the pavement and piled a huge mound of dirt over that land. Here’s an eastbound photo from the west end of that segment. I assume that this was to prevent stolen Toyotas from being driven away down this road.

Road Closed

There are three right-of-way markers on this old alignment. This one is on the remaining curve.

Ind R/W

In the last year or so, someone destroyed this marker. A car must have run off the road and hit it hard to do this much damage.

Knocked-over ROW marker

Another right-of-way marker has been lying on its side the entire time I’ve lived here. Another errant car caused this, I’m sure. I’m a little surprised nobody has stolen it.

Indiana ROW marker

Here’s the westbound road. I don’t know whether this road belongs to Whitestown or Zionsville, as this road is the boundary between the two towns here. Whichever town is responsible for it repaved it and striped it a few years ago. It was not striped before.

Great light on an evening walk

It was normal for a long time that state highways had no shoulders like this. Driving this little segment of former State Road 334 gives a bit of the feel of Indiana’s highways from days gone by.

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7 responses to “Living near former State Road 334”

  1. Andy Umbo Avatar
    Andy Umbo

    Great to see a lot of the old ‘hood I used to travel between Z-ville and the cigar lounge in Brownsburg. Used to try to go a different way every time and see what there was to see on all the small roads.

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      There are a lot of small roads between here and B’burg!

  2. Simon Hollander Avatar
    Simon Hollander

    The opening photo is the epitome of autumn. Every year I try to take a picture that powerful and moving and every year I fail.

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      What a nice thing to say! Thank you. I made that photo with my iPhone 12.

  3. Steve Mitchell Avatar

    That Toyota dealership!

    1. Andy Umbo Avatar
      Andy Umbo

      Gotta say that Toyota dealership treated me very well the years I lived in Indy and Z-ville. One of the better ones….

    2. Jim Grey Avatar

      I watched it being built – it’s literally outside my back door. I bought a minivan from that dealership in its former location, many years ago.

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