Nevada/highway classification

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This page provides specific guidance for the state of Nevada pursuant to the values of the 2021 Highway Classification Guidance. It is requested that prior to making large scale changes in accordance with these guidelines that the local mappers affected be contacted and consulted. First priority will be given to local knowledge and primary source surveys.

Nevada Data Sources and References

NDOT Links

Other Sources

Nevada Functional Classification Definitions

The Nevada Department of Transportation (NDOT) defines several functional classifications based on how roads are used. The definitions are closely aligned with the US Highway Functional Classification but may vary depending on local context.


  1. Principal Arterials - Principal Arterials serve a large percentage of travel between cities and activity centers. Principal arterials are typically roadways with high traffic volumes and are the frequent route for intercity busses and trucks.
    1. Interstates
    2. Other Freeways and Expressways - Roadways in this category with full access control look similar to Interstates. By definition, Freeways are characterized by full access control with access points limited to on/off ramps and no at grade intersections. Expressways are more common in rural settings where at grade intersections are permitted to varying degrees depending on context. In general, these types of roadways favor mobility over access with this being truer for Freeways than Expressways.
    3. Other Principal Arterials - These roadways serve activity centers and provide a high degree of mobility. These roadways provide additional access to parcels and have at-grade intersections. Other Principal Arterials provide similar service in both urban and rural areas; the primary difference in urban areas is the quantity of arterials serving a particular urban area and radiate out from the urban center. Rural areas would typically be served by one Arterial.
  2. Minor Arterials
    1. Minor Arterials provide service for moderate length trips, serve geographic areas that are smaller than the Principal Arterial roadways, and have higher connectivity to the Principal Arterials. In urban settings, they interconnect and supplement the Principal Arterial system, connect communities, and may carry many bus routes. In rural settings, they are typically designed to provide higher travel speeds with minimum interference to the through movement.

Collector Roads and Streets

  1. Collector Roads and Streets. Collectors provide the connection from Local Roads to the Arterial systems. Collectors may be subdivided into Major and Minor Collectors in both the urban and rural areas. A major part of the rural highway system consists of two-lane collector highways. The rural collector routes generally serve travel of primarily intra-county rather than statewide importance and constitute those routes on which predominant travel distances are shorter than on arterial routes. An urban collector street is a public facility that includes the entire area within the right of way. The urban collector street also serves pedestrian and bicycle traffic and often accommodates public utility facilities within the right of way.
    1. Major Collector. Major Collectors are typically longer in length, have lower connecting driveway density, higher posted speeds, higher traffic volumes and may have more travel lanes than the Minor Collector.
    2. Minor Collector. Minor Collectors serve both land access and traffic circulation, penetrate residential neighborhoods for short distances, operate at lower posted speeds, and have signalized intersections, provide service to smaller communities not served by Arterials, and link locally important traffic generators with rural surroundings.

Local Roads and Streets

  1. Local Roads and Streets. Local Roads account for the largest percentage of roadways in terms of mileage and are typically designed to discourage through traffic. A local road or residential street primarily serves as access to a farm, residence, business, or other abutting property. Some such roads properly include geometric design and traffic control features more typical of Collectors and Arterials to encourage the safe movement of through traffic. On these roads, the through traffic is local in nature and extent rather than regional, intrastate, or interstate. Local Roads are typically classified by default; once all other roads have been classified as Arterial or Collector, the remainder are Local Roads.

Important Population Centers

The Nevada Department of Transportation (NDOT) divides the state into three transportation planning regions with six additional sub-regions that share common transportation characteristics. This section will look at the NDOT sub-regions and identify the major cities and towns that comprise these regional planning districts. The inclusion of any location on this list is meant to indicate that the population center is regionally important and generally regarded as a populated place with services. This list should not be used to inform decisions about OpenStreetMap "place" classification.

District 1

Sub-District Notable Population Centers County Population 2020
Las Vegas Las Vegas Clark 641,903
Las Vegas Henderson Clark 317,610
Las Vegas Caliente Lincoln 990
Tonopah Pahrump Nye 44,738
Tonopah Tonopah Nye 2,179

District 2

Sub-District Notable Population Centers County Population 2020
Carson City Carson City Carson City 58,639
Carson City Hawthorne Mineral 3,118
Carson City Minden-Gardnerville** Douglas 9,653
Reno Reno-Sparks* Washoe 372,610
Reno Incline Village Washoe 9,462
Reno Fallon Churchill 9,327
Reno Fernley Lyon 22,895
Reno Yerington Lyon 3,121
Reno Lovelock Pershing 1,805

*Both cities are referred to collectively as "Reno-Sparks" and are generally spoken of in kind. They remain legally separate municipalities.

**Both cities are referred to collectively as "Minden-Gardnerville" and are generally spoken of in kind. They remain legally separate municipalities.

District 3

Sub-District Notable Population Centers County Population 2020
Winnemucca Winnemucca Humboldt 8,603
Winnemucca Battle Mountain Lander 3,705
Elko Elko Elko 20,564
Elko Wells Elko 1,237
Elko West Wendover Elko 4,512
Ely Ely White Pine 3,924
Ely Eureka Eureka 414
Ely Austin Lander 167


Interstate Motorway Routes

Motorways should be tagged using the criteria set in United_States/Highway_classification. In Nevada, roads with a NDOT-designation of Interstate or Freeway, and some Expressways will meet the definition of a highway=motorway.

Aligns with the NDOT designations of:

  • Interstate
Corridor Endpoint Endpoint
Interstate 11 US 93 at Arizona state line I-215 / I-515 / US 93 / US 95 / SR 564 in Henderson
Interstate 15 I-15 at California state line I-15 at Arizona state line
Interstate 80 I-80 at California state line I-80 at Utah state line
Interstate 215 I-215 from Henderson to Enterprise CC 215 from Enterprise to North Las Vegas
Interstate 515 I-11 / I-215 / US 93 / US 95 / SR 564 in Henderson I-15 / US 93 / US 95 in Las Vegas
Interstate 580 US 50 / US 395 / US 395 Bus. in Carson City I-80 / US 395 in Reno

Non-Interstate Motorway Routes

Aligns with the NDOT designations of:

  • Principal Arterial - Freeways and Expressways (if the road includes ALL of the characteristics of a highway=motorway)
Corridor Endpoint Endpoint Notes
US 395 I-80 / US 395 in Reno US 395 at California state line near Hallelujah Junction Grade separated freeway facility providing primary connections between Reno suburbs of Lemmon Valley, Cold Springs, Golden Valley, Stead, Bordertown, etc., Interstate 80, South Reno, Sparks, and Carson City.
NV 171 I-215 in Paradise SR 562 in Paradise Limited-access facility providing a connection between Interstate 215 and Harry Reid International Airport in Paradise (Unincorporated). Known as Harry Reid Airport Connector.
NV 613 At-grade intersection with CC 215 US 95 in Las Vegas Grade separated facility due east of existing at-grade interchange with CC 215. Known as Summerlin Parkway. Freeway to freeway interchange exists with US 95 in Las Vegas. Direct access HOV ramps have been constructed with no HOV facilities presently constructed on Summerlin Parkway.
CC 215 I-215 from Henderson to Enterprise CC 215 from Enterprise to North Las Vegas Grade separated circumferential highway connecting the Las Vegas Valley. Known as the Bruce Woodbury Beltway. Final projects constructing interchanges between CC 215 and US 95 and CC 215 and Interstate 15 are underway and will be completed in 2023. Facility will be designated as Interstate 215 upon completion of projects and maintenance responsibilities will be given to NDOT.

Trunk Routes

See United States/Highway classification#Trunk.

"As the top non-motorway classification, highway=trunk should be applied in the following cases:

  • In areas of high population density, to expressways that meet most, but not all, of the requirements for highway=motorway, and provide connectivity between motorways and other trunk roads. These roads should also be tagged expressway=yes.
  • In areas of medium to low population density, to the most important non-motorway roads that provide principal, long-haul connections between population centers of regional importance."

The following roads are the principal routes between pairs of important population centers, and not serviced by highway=motorway, and thus should be tagged highway=trunk. If the road, or portions of the road have the physical characteristics of an expressway, then expressway=yes may be added to indicate the method of construction.

The trunk classification of these roads should terminate either at a motorway or at another trunk-classified road to ensure network continuity. The only exception to this rule is in the case of cities of regional importance where the sole principal trunk route terminates at a city due to terminal topography.

When a trunk road passes through a town or community, its importance to the road network means it should retain the trunk tag. Use other descriptive tags such as maxspeed=*, lanes=*, width=* to indicate the changes to the physical road construction inside the town. Exception: If there is a trunk or motorway level bypass that through-traffic is expected to use, then the portion of the original trunk that passes through down may be downgraded to primary.

Aligns with the NDOT designations of:

  • Principal Arterial - Freeways and Expressways (if not already a highway=motorway)
  • Principal Arterial - Other (unless parallel to another Principal Arterial or trunk)
Corridor Endpoint Endpoint Notes
US 6 US 6 / NV 318 junction US 93 / US 50 / US 6 intersection in Ely Well-maintained facility serving as one of the many legs between the Interstate 15 to Interstate 80 connection. Principal freight corridor for eastern Nevada.
US 6 US 6 / US 95 at Coaldale Junction US 6 / US 95 junction in Tonopah Concurrent route with US 95 providing part of the fastest semi-direct route between Las Vegas and Reno.
US 50 US 50 at California state line US 95 / US 50 intersection in Fallon Principal connection between Carson City and South Lake Tahoe and the rapidly growing population centers in Douglas, Lyon, and Churchill counties. Fastest route between Fallon, Dayton, Carson City, and South Lake Tahoe, CA.
US 50 Alt I-80 BUS / US 50 Alt / US 95 Alt roundabout in Fernley US 50 near Fallon Principal connection between Reno-Spark Metropolitan Area and the Fallon Micropolitan Area. Fastest connection between Interstate 80 and Fallon Micropolitan Area.
US 93 I-15 at Garnet US 93/ NV 318 junction near Crystal Springs Principal connection between Interstate 15 and NV 318. Serves as a leg of the fastest Nevada route between Las Vegas and Boise as well as between Interstate 15 and Interstate 80.
US 93 US 93 / US 50 / US 6 intersection in Ely US 93 at the Idaho state line in Jackpot Principal connection between major U.S. highways, interstate routes and destinations beyond for the state of Nevada.
US 95 US 95 at California state line near Cal-Nev-Ari I-11 / US 93 / SR 173 in Boulder City Secondary freight route between Interstate 10 and Interstate 11 near Boulder City. More than half of the segment is constructed as an expressway.
US 95 US 95 at Corn Creek Road near Las Vegas I-80 at Trinity Junction Principal north-south freight connection between Interstate 80 and Las Vegas. Arterial connection between settlements of Hawthorne, Tonopah, and Fallon. Multiple connections to other major non-interstate routes that connect the remainder of the state.
US 95 Interstate 80 exit 176 in Winnemucca US 95 at the Oregon state line in McDermitt Principal north-south Nevada freight connection between Boise, eastern Oregon, Washington, Canada and Interstate 80. Fastest route between Reno, major economic regions of California and Boise.
US 95 Alt US 50 / US 50 Alt / US 95 Alt roundabout in Silver Springs US 95 / US 95 Alt near Schurz Fastest route between Reno and Las Vegas by 7 miles. Facility construction is inferior to US 95 / US 50 and is not considered the "best" route between Reno and Las Vegas. Preferred connection is US 95 / US 50 via Fallon for both freight and passenger vehicle traffic.
US 395 US 395 at California state line in Topaz Lake US 50 / US 395 / US 395 Bus. in Carson City Primary connection between US 395 in California and Interstate 580/US 395 through Carson City and Reno before returning to California near Hallelujah Junction. Primary non-interstate route connecting the greater Los Angeles Region, Reno-Tahoe, and the eastern portion of the Pacific Northwest.
NV 160 I-15 in Enterprise US 95 north of Pahrump Principal connection between Pahrump to Las Vegas and Pahrump to US 95. Unincorporated Pahrump boasts a population of 44,738 as of the 2020 census. NV 160 handles all traffic between Pahrump and the Las Vegas valley.
NV 318 US 93/ NV 318 junction near Crystal Springs US 6 / NV 318 junction Fastest route between Las Vegas and Ely. Provides significant time savings as opposed to US 93. Preferred freight and passenger vehicle routing for north-south travel in the state of Nevada.
NV 439 (USA Parkway) US 50 in Silver Springs I-80 in Clark Four-lane expressway connecting the Tahoe-Reno Industrial Center (TRIC) with Interstate 80 and US 50 in Lyon County. Faster, more efficient connection between workforces of Lyon and Storey Counties and the TRIC.

Primary Routes

Corridor Endpoint Endpoint Notes
US 6 US 6 at California state line US 6 / US 95 at Coaldale Junction Connection between US 395 in Bishop, CA and US 95 near Tonopah. Maintained in the winter. Does not connect any major population centers.
US 6 US 6 / US 95 junction in Tonopah US 6 / NV 318 junction East-west connection across very remote central Nevada. Principal connection between Tonopah and Ely.
US 6 US 93 / US 50 / US 6 intersection in Ely US 6 at Utah state line Continuation of US 6 across central Nevada. Connects Ely to Delta, UT and eventually Interstate 15.
US 50 US 95 / US 50 intersection in Fallon US 50 / US 93 intersection in Ely Continuation of US 50 across central Nevada. Connects Fallon, Austin, and Ely. Colloquially known as the "Loneliest Road in America." Extremely limited services.
US 50 US 93 / US 50 / US 6 intersection in Ely US 50 at Utah state line Concurrent routing with US 6 from Ely to the Utah state line.
US 50 Alt I-80 BUS / US 50 Alt / US 95 Alt / NV 427 intersection in Fernley US 50 / US 95 Alt. in Silver Springs Connection between multiple U.S. and state routes in Fernley to multiple U.S. routes in Silver Springs. Provides another connection between Interstate 80, US 50, and US 95.
US 93 US 93/ NV 318 junction near Crystal Springs US 93 / US 50 / US 6 intersection in Ely NV 318 provides a more direct connection between Las Vegas, Ely, and Interstate 80. Both routes are remote and employ limited services.
US 93 Alt US 93 / US 93 Alt junction at Lages Station I-80 BUS in West Wendover Principal connection between Las Vegas, Ely, and West Wendover. Limited services on route.
US 95 Alt I-80 BUS / US 50 Alt / US 95 Alt / NV 427 intersection in Fernley US 50 / US 95 Alt. in Silver Springs Concurrent routing with US 50 Alt.
NV 28 CA 28 at California state line US 50 near Glenbrook Forms the Nevada part of the Lake Tahoe ring road. Connects Incline Village to US 50 and South Lake Tahoe and Carson City.
NV 88 US 395 in Minden NV 206 at Gardnerville Ranchos Secondary route between US 395 and Interstate 5 via CA 88.
NV 157 Dead end in Mount Charleston US 95 / Sky Pointe Drive in Las Vegas Principal access to the Spring Mountains National Recreation Area from the Las Vegas Valley.
NV 169 I-15 near Moapa Valley North boundary of Lake Mead NRA Connects the settlements in the Moapa Valley to Interstate 15. Secondary access to Valley of Fire State Park.
NV 207 US 50 at Stateline-Kingsbury line NV 206 west of Gardnerville Secondary connection between South Lake Tahoe and Garderville-Minden area. Serves as additional access to South Lake Tahoe in the winter.
NV 208 US 395 near Topaz Lake NV 208 / NV 339 junction Secondary connection via Yerington between US 395 and US 95 via US 95 Alt.
NV 225 I-80 BUS / NV 535 in Elko ID 51 at Idaho border Alternate north-south connection between Interstate 80 in Elko and Interstate 84 near Mountain Home, ID. Alternate route to US 93 and US 95.
NV 227 I-80 BUS / SR 535 in Elko NV 227 / Spring Creek Parkway intersection Principal connection between Elko (pop. 20,564), Spring Creek (pop. 14,697), and Lamoille (pop. 136). Constructed as an expressway in some sections.
NV 319 US 93 near Panaca UT 56 at Utah state line west of Modena, UT Connection between US 93, Cedar City, UT and Interstate 15.
NV 339 NV 208 / NV 339 junction US 95 Alt / NV 339 intersection Primary connection between US 95 Alt in Yerington and US 395.
NV 372 CA 178 at California state line NV 160 in Pahrump Connection between Pahrump and Baker, CA and Interstate 15. Access to Death Valley National Park.
NV 431 NV 28 in Incline Village US 395 Alt. / NV 341 in Reno Principal connection between Incline Village, Lake Tahoe, and the Reno-Sparks metropolitan area. Provides access to two Nevada ski resorts.

Urban Routes

Corridor Classification Endpoint Endpoint Notes
NV 146 (Saint Rose Parkway) Trunk I-15 / Southern Highlands Parkway in Enterprise I-215 / Pecos Road in Henderson Major arterial connector between Interstate 15 and Interstate 215 in Henderson.