Here to show us the stunning intricacy of U.S. highways is Sydney-born, Portland-based graphic designer Cameron Booth. Booth has illustrated every single current and signed Interstate Highway and U.S. Highway in the contiguous 48 states, a project that required almost two years of researching, designing, and fact-checking.
The map comes on the heels of Booth’s two previous map projects: one in which he mapped U.S. Interstates like a subway map, and another picturing U.S. highways as subway maps. While this one—combining interstates and highways—is still inspired by subway map designs, "I’d stop short of calling this a "subway map," Booth writes on his website. "I’d rather call it a 'simplified road map' instead." He details the map’s design principles:
White circles with black strokes denote named places (cities, towns, etc.) where two or more roads intersect. The more roads at that location, the larger the dot. Named places at intersections are always shown, even if they’re just a teeny-tiny little hamlet. Not all roads meet at named places, so there are intersections with no labels. Places that fall along a road between intersections are shown as a "tick," and are included if they have a population of 1,000 or over (thanks, Wikipedia!).
With an incredible 4,385 places named, the map is physically massive—Booth’s Illustrator file was 144 inches wide by 88 inches deep. Booth will be selling posters of the map at half that size for $225, as well as posters of individual states for $22 to $49. The posters available for purchase here.
[h/t Eric Jaffe]