A Street By Any Other Number

2018 November/December

Numbering, as a way of naming streets, is a common and easy way to bring organization to the grid structure of most cities.

 

By 1889, Paducah had already spread 16 blocks from the river, with the highest numbered street on the map being 15th. Over the years, as the city grew toward the west, more numbered streets were added. Some saw name changes such as 1st Street becoming Water Street. Many became thoroughfares and part of the shared pathway culture—streets such as 3rd and 4th and 21st and 28th.

 

As the numbered streets get higher, there are often gaps where named streets take precedence or a numbered street is only a short spur. We recently wondered, what is the highest numbered street in Paducah? After all, the Greater New York City area reaches a whopping 704th Street. So where does Paducah, in numerical blocks, end?

 

The answer is found not far from the intersection of Pines Road and Buckner Lane, where, for one block between Buckner and Exall Lane, Paducah peaks at South 47th Street. While the city limit extends beyond this mark, here stands a testament to the growth of a city as it emerged, block by block, from the river.

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