Interstate 8

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Interstate 8 marker

Interstate 8

Interstate 8 highlighted in red
Route information
Length: 350.34 mi[a] (563.82 km)
Existed: 1964 – present
Major junctions
West end: Sunset Cliffs Boulevard / Nimitz Boulevard in San Diego, CA
East end: I-10 near Casa Grande, AZ
States: California, Arizona
Counties: CA: San Diego, Imperial
AZ: Yuma, Maricopa, Pinal
Highway system
  • State Routes in Arizona

SR 7 CA SR 9
SR 802 AZ I-10
Interstate 8 in San Diego, from the San Diego Trolley.

Interstate 8 (I-8) is an Interstate Highway in the southwestern United States. It runs from the southern edge of Mission Bay at Sunset Cliffs Blvd, in San Diego, California, almost at the Pacific Ocean, to the junction with Interstate 10, just southeast of Casa Grande, Arizona. In California, the freeway travels through the San Diego metropolitan area as the Ocean Beach Freeway and the Mission Valley Freeway before crossing the Cuyamaca Mountains and providing access through the Imperial Valley, including the city of El Centro. Crossing the Colorado River into Arizona, I-8 continues through the city of Yuma across the Sonora Desert to Casa Grande.

The first route over the Cuyamaca Mountains was dedicated in 1912, and a plank road served as the first road across the Imperial Valley to Yuma. These were later replaced by U.S. Route 80 (US 80) across California and part of Arizona, and Arizona State Route 84 between Gila Bend and Casa Grande. The US 80 freeway was largely complete through San Diego by the time it was renumbered as I-8 in the 1964 state highway renumbering. With the construction of the Interstate Highway System, US 80 was slowly replaced by I-8 as the latter was constructed. The route was completed in 1975 through California, and by 1977 through Arizona, though the bridge over the Colorado River was not completed until 1978.

Route description[edit]

I-8 is part of the National Highway System,[1][2] a network of roadways important to the country's economy, defense, and mobility.[3] The freeway from the eastern junction with California State Route 98 (SR 98) to the eastern end is designated as part of the Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail auto tour route, promoted by the National Park Service.[4][5][6][7]

San Diego to Arizona border[edit]

I-8 is part of the California Freeway and Expressway System[8] and is eligible for the State Scenic Highway System from I-5 to the western junction of SR 98,[9] though it is not an official state scenic highway.[10] It is officially known as the Border Friendship Route from San Diego to the Arizona state line. The Interstate is also signed as the Ocean Beach Freeway west of I-5, and as the Kumeyaay Highway (after the local Native American tribe) for the entire length within San Diego County.[11] Between Old Town San Diego and El Cajon, I-8 is called the Mission Valley Freeway.[12]

The freeway begins at the intersection of Sunset Cliffs Boulevard and Nimitz Boulevard. For its first few miles, it parallels the San Diego River Floodway east. Near Old Town, I-8 intersects with I-5 as well as with the former SR 209. I-8 continues eastward, bisecting the area known as "Hotel Circle." As the freeway enters Mission Valley, it has junctions with SR 163, I-805, and I-15 and its continuation, SR 15. In La Mesa, the route interchanges with SR 125. I-8 continues into El Cajon, where it intersects with SR 67 before it ascends into the mountains and the Cleveland National Forest, traveling through towns such as Alpine and Pine Valley. The freeway intersects with SR 79 in the national forest before passing through the La Posta and Campo Indian reservations. In Boulevard, I-8 has an interchange with the eastern end of SR 94.[13][14]

I-8 straddles the San DiegoImperial county line for a few miles before turning east. At the Mountain Springs/In Ko Pah grade, the freeway is routed down two separate canyons, as it descends 4,000 feet (1,200 m) in 11 miles (18 km).[15] In places, the median is over 1.5 miles (2.4 km) wide.[12][14] The route descends to the Imperial Valley, where it intersects with SR 98, a highway leading to Calexico. I-8 then goes through Coyote Wells before entering the city of El Centro several miles later.[12][14]

In El Centro, I-8 intersects with SR 86 and SR 111, both north–south routes which connect to I-10 in the Coachella Valley (north of the Salton Sea). SR 115 and SR 98 end at I-8. The route also has the lowest above-ground elevation of any Interstate at 52 feet (16 m) below sea level near El Centro.[16] The freeway then traverses the Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area and intersects with SR 186 leading to Mexico.[12][14] I-8 runs parallel to the All-American Canal across the desert for roughly 55 miles (89 km).[17] At points in eastern Imperial County, the Mexican border is less than 0.5 miles (0.80 km) south of the Interstate. I-8 then passes through Felicity and Winterhaven before crossing the Colorado River into Yuma, Arizona.[12][14]

Yuma to Casa Grande[edit]

I-8 enters Arizona from California at the Colorado River bridge at Yuma. It initially heads south through Yuma until the interchange with US 95 where the freeway begins to make the turn to the east. West of Wellton, the highway curves towards the north to take a northeasterly course. Through this part of Arizona, I-8 passes along the northern edge of the Barry M. Goldwater Air Force Range and to the south of the Yuma Proving Ground. It keeps a northeastern heading until it reaches Gila Bend where the freeway intersects Arizona State Route 85 (SR 85) which leads to Phoenix. After leaving Gila Bend, I-8 takes a southeastern course as it passes through the Sonoran Desert National Monument. After exiting the national monument grounds, the highway continues on an easterly bearing to a junction with SR 84, a highway that will parallel I-8 to the north and go through Casa Grande while I-8 will pass to the south of the city. I-8 reaches its eastern terminus at an interchange with I-10 which continues on to Tucson.[18][19] SR 85 between I-10 and I-8, as well as I-8 between SR 85 and I-10 in Casa Grande, has been promoted as a bypass of the Phoenix area for long-distance travelers on I-10.[20]


The I-8 designation was accepted as a chargeable Interstate by the American Association of State Highway Officials in 1957,[21] and was designated as I-8 in 1964 by the California State Legislature; the US 80 designation was removed from the law at that time.[22][23]

San Diego area[edit]

Interstate 8 in San Diego near Mission Valley

Much of the I-8 freeway from San Diego to La Mesa was originally constructed between 1947 and 1950 as part of the Alvarado Canyon Freeway, a bypass of the old US 80 routing along El Cajon Boulevard and La Mesa Boulevard. Planning first began in 1932, but was delayed by the onset of World War II.[24] Work began to convert the original US 80 divided highway into a freeway in 1960,[25] and the freeway was complete west of El Cajon by April 1962.[26] Priority was given to planning US 80 in 1962 by the California Chamber of Commerce.[27] In 1964, I-8 was officially designated by the California State Legislature, and the US 80 designation was removed.[22][23] By 1965, I-8 from Fairmount Avenue to El Cajon Boulevard was one of the first freeway stretches in the county to have a center barrier installed in the median.[28]

The "Ocean Beach Freeway" section west of I-5 was authorized as Route 286 in 1959.[29] In 1962, four alternate routes were proposed for this part of the freeway, and for Rosecrans Street.[30] Route 286 was renumbered to SR 109 in the 1964 renumbering.[23] Plans for the Old Town interchange between I-5 (formerly US 101), I-8 (formerly US 80), SR 209 (Rosecrans Street), and SR 109 date from 1962, although several concerns had to be taken into account, including the preservation of historical Old Town and keeping traffic through the area moving during construction. The goal was to begin construction in 1966, and complete the interchange in 1969.[31][32] There were concerns about a $3 billion shortfall in funding during May 1966, which caused the San Diego Chamber of Commerce Highway Committee to recommend the completion of SR 109 as a project.[33] This was projected to be the final highway project before I-5 was completed in San Diego County.[34]

Construction had begun on September 22, 1966, and the interchange was to replace the intersection of Pacific Highway and Rosecrans Street. The cost of the interchange was projected to be $10.86 million.[35] SR 109 was planned to follow Camino del Rio up to the Frontier traffic circle, where the city of San Diego would resume construction; both SR 109 and SR 209 were to be constructed in the future.[36] The eight-lane freeway was projected to relieve traffic in the Frontier Street area coming from the San Diego Sports Arena. Bidding for the construction contract for SR 109 was to begin in 1968, after the City Council endorsed the route in December 1967. Completion of both the interchange and SR 109 was planned for early 1969.[37] An interchange was planned at Midway Drive, and the western end of the freeway was to be at Sunset Cliffs and Nimitz boulevards.[38] The cost of the SR 109 project was estimated to be $2.3 million.[39]

The ramp from south I-5 to Camino del Rio opened in February 1968,[37] and a second ramp from southbound I-5 to eastbound I-8 opened in August 1968, with the remainder of the project to be completed in summer 1969.[40] The groundbreaking for the Ocean Beach Freeway took place on September 23, 1968, with the estimated completion to take place within 15 months.[39] However, rain in February 1969 delayed many construction projects across the county, including the SR 109 extension.[41] The entire project was completed in September, with the road scheduled to open in October.[42] The routing of SR 109 was officially added to I-8 in 1972.[43]

Cuyamaca Mountains[edit]

A stagecoach road existed into the 19th century that passed through the mountains east of San Diego.[44] Well before the freeway was constructed, the automobile road through the mountains east of San Diego was narrow and wound through the mountains; it was officially dedicated in 1912.[45][46] This trip was known to take up to four hours, and frequently resulted in the radiator boiling over, flat tires, or broken fan belts; recent inclement weather would result in cars becoming mired in the mud. A paved road was constructed in 1926, and was open by 1927, and remnants of this road were still present in the late twentieth century. Another road was constructed in the early 1930s, to remove curves and widen the lanes.[44] This was a two-lane road that still had many switchbacks, with one popularly known as "Dead Man's Curve".[47] Construction of I-8 took place atop much of the roadbed of the highway from the early 1930s.[44] The delay in constructing a road to San Diego caused increased development in Los Angeles and resulted in that city becoming the trade and population center of Southern California.[48]

Completion of the freeway was the second highest priority according to the Highway Development Association in May 1963, after the I-5 freeway.[49] Bidding began on the portion from Broadway in El Cajon to Harritt Road in September 1963. This section of the freeway was to parallel US 80 to the south up to Lakeview Road, and then to the north.[50] This portion of the freeway was scheduled to be complete by May 1965.[51] By January 1965, I-8 had been completed from I-5 east to an interchange with Lake Jennings Park Road,[52] just south of the latter's intersection with the southern terminus of Harritt Road.[13] The part of the freeway from west of Harritt Road to west of Alpine was up for bidding in October 1964,[53] and the Highway Commission set aside $2.1 million for this 1.6-mile-long (2.6 km) stretch in February 1965.[54] A construction contract for $1.42 million was issued in August 1965.[55] The entire 6-mile (9.7 km) stretch from Lake Jennings Road to Harbinson Canyon Road was under construction by September 1965 and was scheduled to be complete by the next year.[56]

In the Mountain Springs pass between San Diego and Imperial counties, the eastbound lanes traverse the pass on the former roadbed of US 80 near Myers Creek. The westbound lanes were placed on a different routing through Devil's Canyon that had been constructed by November 1963. A contract for paving the 9.7 miles (15.6 km) from the San Diego–Imperial county line to SR 98, including the eastbound lanes, was given to the Isbell Construction Company for $3.69 million in May 1963. This portion was completed in May 1965 "through some of the most rugged, hottest sections of San Diego and Imperial counties," according to the San Diego Union. Construction ran into difficulties following concerns regarding potential landslides. The westbound lanes were constructed first, and temporarily contained both directions of traffic while the old highway was converted into the eastbound lanes.[57][58] The Los Angeles Times described the stretch east of Mountain Springs as follows: "Through it the freeway engineers have hacked two separate roadways night even in sight of each other, but so overpowering in the sheer magnitude of the cuts through the mountains that it is almost impossible to believe human beings could have so overpowered hostile nature..."[59] While using nuclear power to conduct blasting operations in the Laguna Mountains was considered as a possibility, the proposal was not considered to be practical at the time.[60] A high line was used to move girders into place; this was the first use of a high line in Southern California road construction.[61]

The portion from Boulevard to near the Imperial County line was included in the California Highway Commission budget for 1965–1966.[62] A 6.7-mile (10.8 km) extension from Mountain Springs west to what was then known as Road J-35 was given $3.7 million in funding by the Highway Commission in May 1965.[63] The 10-mile (16 km) section in between this one and the Mountain Springs pass section was in planning by that September, and was scheduled to begin construction shortly thereafter, with the section extending west of Boulevard to follow.[64] That section, from Crestwood to Boulevard, was to begin construction soon after the $3 million contract was given out in January 1966.[65] The coming of the freeway from both west and east of Jacumba was projected to be a significant event in the history of the town.[59] Following the freeway construction, cafes and gas stations went out of business once the freeway bypassed the town; however, many retired adults relocated into the town since the high levels of traffic were gone.[48] The labeling of the town Boulevard as Manzanita on I-8 signs raised controversy and forced the Division of Highways to obscure the name on the signs until the issue was resolved.[66]

Construction continued with the issuing of a $6.55 million contract to widen a 5.7-mile (9.2 km) section of I-8 through Alpine, from Harbinson Canyon to east of West Victoria Drive, and to begin construction in April or May 1967, to be completed in 1969. This would leave only a 30-mile (48 km) stretch of I-8 that was not at freeway standards.[67][68] As the construction continued, concerns about increased smog from the additional traffic were raised in October 1967.[69] A 3.7-mile (6.0 km) section to the east of Alpine was scheduled to have bidding opened in November of that year, and was to be finished in 1968; this would produce a continuous freeway from San Diego to the eastern terminus of this route.[70] Both of these projects were underway by May 1968.[71] An additional contract was given out for $7.8 million in August to continue the freeway east from Alpine Street to Japatul Valley Road; this would bring the freeway near Descanso Junction.[72] Roughly 5.5 million cubic yards of dirt and rock were to be generated by all three of these construction projects, since half of a mountain would have to be removed with a million pounds of dynamite. The third project was constructed near the site of an abandoned attempt to build a tunnel for the old highway after World War II, which proved to be too expensive.[73]

By mid-February 1969, one segment of the part of the freeway running through Alpine was nearing completion, and was scheduled to open on February 21; another section was to open in April. However, the grading of the mountain near Viejas Grade and the Sweetwater River had not been completed on the final portion, although dirt and rocks were transported on a conveyor belt across US 80 to become part of an embankment for the Sweetwater River bridge. The historic Ellis Grade radiator stop was to be removed, and replaced with one at Vista Point.[74] On April 19, 1969, the portion 2.5 miles (4.0 km) east of Alpine opened to traffic.[75] All of the Alpine portion of I-8 opened on May 22, 1969, after a ribbon-cutting ceremony; yet the Viejas Grade portion was now projected to be completed by 1972.[76] The bridge over the Sweetwater River was under construction by 1970,[77] and the entire segment cost $22.1 million.[78] By May, this segment was estimated to be completed in the later part of that year.[45] The leveling of the grade resulted in the second highest fill in the state at 360 feet (110 m).[79]

The final portion of I-8 in California, between Japatul Valley Road and west of Boulevard, was prioritized in the 1969–1970 state budget.[80] However, due to financial concerns, it was announced in September 1968 that the target date for completing the Interstate Highway System would be extended until 1974, from 1972. The missing portion of I-8 was expected to cost $45 million, and be constructed in three parts, with one part being started each year.[81] The portions between Japatul Valley Road and west of Laguna Junction and from La Posta Road to west of Boulevard were delayed for an entire year at the end of 1969 due to a nationwide effort to fight inflation by reducing spending.[82] A 6.6-mile (10.6 km) segment from Buckman Springs to Crestwood received funding in May 1970, and would leave only an 8-mile (13 km) stretch of the freeway uncompleted when built.[78] The drive time from San Diego to El Centro had been reduced to two hours.[45] By August 1970, the remainder of the freeway had been funded, with the portion from Japutal Valley Road to Laguna Junction costing $22 million, and the Laguna Junction to Crestwood portion costing $15 million.[83]

In May 1971, El Centro Mayor Alex Gay requested that passing lanes be added to the remaining two-lane portion of I-8 in between El Centro and San Diego due to the frequent traffic jams along that part of the road, in between Japatul Valley and Crestwood; at this time this was the only missing portion through the mountains.[84] Bidding took place on the $16.5 million La Posta Road to Crestwood Road portion and the Japtatul Valley Road to Sunrise Highway portion in November 1971.[85] As part of this series of projects, the highest concrete bridge in the state at the time was to be built at 430 feet (130 m) over Pine Valley Creek on the portion between Japatul Valley Road and Sunrise Highway. The contract came in at $22.6 million, at over $5 million over budget due to the difficulty of the bridge construction. All three of the projects to complete I-8 were projected to be complete by mid-1974.[86] However, in March 1972, it was announced that the La Posta Road portion of the construction would be delayed due to budget troubles.[87]

By the beginning of 1974, the new projected completion date for I-8 was mid-1975, with 22 miles (35 km) of two-lane highway remaining.[88] The Pine Valley Creek bridge and the segment extending from Japtul Valley Road to Pine Valley was dedicated on November 24, 1974, and was scheduled to open on November 26; this left 8 miles (13 km) of freeway to be constructed.[89] The final stretch of I-8 in California, from Sunrise Highway to La Posta Road, was completed in May 1975.[48]

Imperial Valley[edit]

I-8 in the Imperial Valley, 1972

The highway through Imperial Valley was originally a plank road made of pieces of wood that were tied together.[46] Following this, US 80 was constructed through the valley as the main east–west route.[90] Plans for a new freeway across the southernmost reaches of California date from before 1950.[91] In 1957, the City of El Centro expressed a desire for the new freeway to replace US 80 to be routed along the southern limits of the city. Caltrans engineer Jacob Dekema stated at the time that the four-lane freeway would not be constructed on the US 80 routing due to possible expansion of the Naval Air Facility El Centro.[92]

In October 1964, the portion of I-8 between Imperial Avenue in El Centro to SR 111 appeared in the state budget.[93] Construction was underway on the stretch from Seeley to SR 111 by June 1966, and the entire portion through the county was planned for completion by 1968.[94] This 12.2-mile (19.6 km) portion, extending west to Drew Road, was planned for completion by early 1967, at a cost of $200 million; however, the date for completion of the freeway had slipped to 1972.[91] The state ordered the construction of the portion from west of Coyote Wells to just east of Drew Road in September 1967.[95] The next year, Jacob Dekema indicated that the goal was to have I-8 completed by 1973, citing a deadline in order to have the federal government pay for up to ninety percent of the costs. The other freeways were to be delayed because of this.[96]

In early 1970, the portion of the freeway from west of Ogilby Road to east of Algodones Road was under construction, and projections were to have this portion completed by later that year. This $5.2 million project also included resurfacing the freeway that had already been built through the Colorado Desert Sandhills;[45] this part of the freeway had been constructed between 1961 and 1965.[97][98] By this time, it was estimated that the drive from San Diego to El Centro now took two hours, as opposed to the 3.5 hours required two decades earlier, and the two days required in the pioneer era.[45] This part of the freeway was opened in July 1970.[99][100] As the freeway was constructed through the valley, it caused a break in many north-south roads. These breaks were located where access to the part of the road on the other side of the freeway was cut off. Plans were put in place to construct frontage roads to improve access through the region.[101]

The 16-mile (26 km) portion of I-8 bypassing Holtville began construction in December 1969, and was nearing completion in May 1971, which resulted in a continuous freeway that connected two existing segments from Crestwood in San Diego County to just west of Winterhaven. It was estimated that the bypass would save travelers 20 minutes of travel time through the Imperial Valley. The cost of this project was $11.2 million. However, Holtville residents raised concerns about SR 115 providing the only access to the eastern part of the city,[102] notably the narrow and curved portion leading from the freeway into town. Construction on this portion began at 3:30 a.m. daily during the summer in order to avoid the desert heat. In addition to this, construction of the Highline Canal overpass involved a 120-foot (37 m) steel span that was prefabricated and made of girders that were hoisted into position by barges. The Matich Construction Company attempted to set the world record for laying the most concrete in a day, aided by the level terrain, but failed to do so after the concrete mixer malfunctioned.[103] That same year, bids for an Arizona plant inspection station near Winterhaven, next to the California agricultural inspection station, were submitted.[104]

The last 6.5-mile (10.5 km) part of the California portion, from near Algodones Road to west of the Arizona state line, was to enter the bidding phase in early 1972.[105] I-8 was scheduled to be completed in the summer of 1975 between San Diego and Yuma, although there would be a break in the freeway around Yuma;[46] this occurred by October 1975.[106] At the time the California portion was completed, it was the preferred route to Phoenix from some areas of Los Angeles, since I-10 had not been completed.[46]

The missing portion of the highway was the new bridge over the Colorado River, which was constructed at a cost of $7.4 million.[106] In June 1975, there were concerns regarding the state delaying new construction projects due to financial concerns, and the effects this would have on the bridge.[107] The bid for the project was awarded to Novo-Rados Construction in October 1975, as one of the final projects before the construction freeze.[108] The new bridge, which replaced the old US 80 bridge, was dedicated on August 18, 1978; this completed I-8 from San Diego to Casa Grande. The Arizona Department of Transportation and the City of Yuma assisted in the planning process. By the time the California portion of the freeway was complete, the average cost was $1 million per mile.[106] The bridge opened on September 20, 1978. The State of California was responsible for the bridge construction, even though the State of Arizona owned half of the bridge.[109]


I-10 approaching the eastern terminus of I-8

Between Yuma and Gila Bend, I-8 runs alongside the routes of both the Gila Trail and the Butterfield Overland Mail Company line.[110] This portion of the route of I-8 was originally part of the proposed state system of highway in 1921.[111]  By 1926, this section became part of the cross-country highway US 80. The route was not paved at this time, but was a gravel road along the entire corridor.[112] By 1928, the portion of I-8 between Gila Bend and Casa Grande was designated as SR 84.[113] A small portion of the highway was paved near Yuma and SR 84 was under construction by the next year.[114] SR 84 was completed by 1930, but not paved and the segment of US 80 between Astec and Sentinel had been paved.[115] By 1931, the entire portion of the highway under the US 80 designation had been paved.[116] Paving of the SR 84 had commenced by 1934, with the portion of the highway in Maricopa County being paved.[117] The entire future corridor of I-8 had been paved from Yuma to Casa Grande by 1935.[118] Drivers were told to bring spare fan belts, radiator hoses, and additional drinking water for the journey traversing the desert.[119]

With the coming of the Interstate Highways, the corridor was to be upgraded to Interstate standards. By 1963, this process was in progress with portions of the highway between Mohawk and Gila Bend, and between Gila Bend and Stanfield upgraded.[120] In 1964, a U.S. House of Representatives investigation discovered that poor management and lack of efficiency were prevalent in four of the projects constructing the I-8 freeway. The Arizona Highway Department was specifically cited in the report for not taking into account protecting government interests when selecting labor for the construction projects. Several errors were discovered, and one of them cost the state of Arizona $26,278 to fix.[121]

By 1971, I-8 was nearly complete including a new alignment east of Yuma built parallel and to the south of the original US 80 alignment. A new alignment was also built to the south of the SR 84 alignment at the eastern end of the highway from southwest of Stanfield to the eastern terminus at I-10 southeast of Casa Grande. The only portions of I-8 not completed at this time were the Casa Grande bypass and the western end near Yuma.[122] As the Interstate was completed, the highways that it replaced were removed from the state highway system. In 1973, the SR 84 designation was removed from the highway from Gila Bend to the split where I-8 followed a new alignment southwest of Stanfield.[123] In 1977, the US 80 designation was removed from this stretch in favor of I-8.[124]

Auxiliary routes[edit]

There are no three-digit Interstates that are related to I-8. However, there are five business routes related to I-8 that provide additional access to the towns or cities of El Cajon, Alpine, El Centro, Yuma, and Gila Bend.[14]

Exit list[edit]

County Location Mile
km Exit
Destinations Notes
San Diego San Diego 0.00 0.00 Nimitz Boulevard, Sunset Cliffs Boulevard – Mission Bay Park At-grade intersection
0.50 0.80 1 Mission Bay Drive, Sports Arena Boulevard to I-5 south Westbound exit and eastbound entrance
1.67 2.69 2 I-5 (San Diego Freeway) – Downtown San Diego, Los Angeles No access from I-8 west to I-5 south and from I-5 south to I-8 west
1.67 2.69 2 Rosecrans Street Westbound exit and eastbound entrance; former SR 209 south
2.03 3.27 2C Morena Boulevard Westbound exit and eastbound entrance
2.60 4.18 3 Taylor Street, Hotel Circle
3.88 6.24 4A Hotel Circle Westbound exit is via exit 3
4.06 6.53 4 SR 163 (Cabrillo Freeway) – Escondido, Downtown San Diego
4.69 7.55 5 Mission Center Road, Auto Circle
5.55 8.93 6A Texas Street, Qualcomm Way
6.03 9.70 6B I-805 (Jacob Dekema Freeway) – Los Angeles, National City, Chula Vista
7 I-15 (Escondido Freeway) / SR 15 – Riverside Signed as exits 7A (north) and 7B (south) eastbound, 7A (south) and 7B (north) westbound
7.94 12.78 8 Mission Gorge Road, Fairmount Avenue Eastbound exit is part of exit 7
8.71 14.02 9 Waring Road
9.99 16.08 10 College Avenue
La Mesa 11.24 18.09 11 Lake Murray Boulevard, 70th Street
12.22 19.67 12 Fletcher Parkway, Baltimore Drive
10.97 17.65 13A Spring Street – Downtown La Mesa No westbound exit
12.22 19.67 13A El Cajon Boulevard Westbound exit and eastbound entrance; former I-8 Bus. west; former US 80 west
13.41 21.58 13B Jackson Drive, Grossmont Boulevard No eastbound entrance
14.05 22.61 14A La Mesa Boulevard, Grossmont Center Drive Signed as exit 14B westbound
14.20 22.85 14B SR 125 to SR 94 Signed as exit 14A westbound
14.30 23.01 14C Severin Drive, Fuerte Drive
El Cajon 15.31 24.64 15 El Cajon Boulevard (I-8 Bus. east) Eastbound exit and westbound entrance; former US 80 east
16.24 26.14 16 Main Street
16.95 27.28 17A Johnson Avenue Eastbound exit and westbound entrance
17.45 28.08 17 SR 67 north / Magnolia Avenue – Santee, Lakeside, Ramona Signed as exits 17B (SR 67) and 17C (Magnolia Avenue) eastbound
18.12 29.16 18 Mollison Avenue
19.01 30.59 19 2nd Street Former SR 54 west
20.38 32.80 20A East Main Street (I-8 Bus. west) Westbound exit and eastbound entrance
20.40 32.83 20B Greenfield Drive – Crest Signed as exit 20 eastbound
  21.69 34.91 22 Los Coches Road – Lakeside
  23.47 37.77 23 Lake Jennings Park Road
  27.34 44.00 27 Dunbar Lane – Harbison Canyon
  30.11 48.46 30 Tavern Road (I-8 Bus. east) – Alpine
  32.99 53.09 33 Willows Road, Alpine Boulevard (I-8 Bus. west) – Alpine
  35.98 57.90 36 East Willows Road
  39.48 63.54 40 SR 79 north (Japatul Valley Road) – Descanso, Julian
  45.18 72.71 45 Pine Valley, Julian
  46.58 74.96 47 Sunrise Highway (CR S1)
  50.49 81.26 51 Buckman Springs Road
  53.63 86.31 54 Kitchen Creek Road – Cameron Station
  60.50 97.37 61 Crestwood Road – Live Oak Springs
  65.25 105.01 65 SR 94 west – Campo, Boulevard
  73.30 117.96 73 Jacumba
  76.93 123.81 77 In-Ko-Pah Park Road
Imperial   80.21 129.09 80 Mountain Springs Road
  87.13 140.22 87 SR 98 east – Calexico Eastbound exit and westbound entrance
Ocotillo 87.13 140.22 89 Imperial Highway (CR S2) – Ocotillo
  100.60 161.90 101 Dunaway Road
  107.05 172.28 107 Drew Road (CR S29) – Seeley
  111.11 178.81 111 Forrester Road (CR S30)
El Centro 114.09 183.61 114 Imperial Avenue (I-8 Bus. east) – El Centro
115.09 185.22 115 SR 86 (4th Street, I-8 Bus. west) – Heber, El Centro Former US 99
  116.08 186.81 116 Dogwood Road (CR S31)
  118.06 190.00 118 SR 111 – Brawley, Indio, Calexico Signed as exits 118A (south) and 118B (north)
  119.66 192.57 120 Bowker Road
  124.90 201.01 125 SR 7 south / Orchard Road (CR S32)
  127.61 205.37 128 Bonds Corner Road Former SR 115
  130.62 210.21 131 SR 115 (Van Der Linden Road) – Holtville Former US 80
  142.87 229.93 143 SR 98 west – Calexico
  145.95 234.88 146 Brock Research Center Road
  150.60 242.37 151 Gordons Well
  155.82 250.77 156 Grays Well Road
  158.81 255.58 159 Ogilby Road (CR S34)
Felicity 163.69 263.43 164 Sidewinder Road
Araz Junction 165.73 266.72 166 SR 186 south (Algodones Road) – Andrade, Mexico
  169.97 273.54 170 Winterhaven Drive (CR S24, I-8 Bus. east) – Winterhaven
  171.54 276.07 172 Winterhaven Drive, Fourth Avenue (I-8 Bus. west) – Winterhaven
California–Arizona state line
Yuma Yuma 0.59 0.95 1 Redondo Center Drive, Giss Parkway
2.23 3.59 2 US 95 (16th Street) – San Luis, Quartzsite, Yuma Proving Grounds
3.98 6.41 3 SR 280 south (Avenue 3E) – Yuma International Airport, Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Yuma County Fairgrounds
7.66 12.33 7 Araby Road – Arizona Western College
9.44 15.19 9 I-8 Bus. (Avenue 8½E)
12.27 19.75 12 Fortuna Road
14.28 22.98 14 Foothills Boulevard
  21.06 33.89 21 Dome Valley
  30.84 49.63 30 Avenue 29E – Wellton
  37.99 61.14 37 Avenue 36E – Roll
  42.10 67.75 42 Avenue 40E – Tacna
  54.98 88.48 54 Avenue 52E – Mohawk Valley
  67.49 108.61 67 Dateland
  73.53 118.34 73 Aztec
  78.51 126.35 78 Spot Road
Maricopa   87.10 140.17 87 Sentinel, Hyder, Agua Caliente
  102.34 164.70 102 Painted Rock Road
  106.56 171.49 106 Paloma Road
  111.49 179.43 111 Citrus Valley Road
Gila Bend 115.68 186.17 116 I-8 Bus. east / SR 85 – Phoenix, Ajo
119.47 192.27 119 I-8 Bus. west (Butterfield Trail) to SR 85 north / I-10
  140.86 226.69 140 Freeman Road
  144.60 232.71 144 Vekol Valley Road
Pinal   151.73 244.19 151 SR 84 east to SR 347 north – Maricopa
  161.61 260.09 161 Stanfield
  167.61 269.74 167 Montgomery Road
  169.72 273.14 169 Bianco Road
  172.62 277.80 172 Thornton Road – Casa Grande
  174.62 281.02 174 Trekell Road – Casa Grande
Casa Grande 178.36 287.04 178 I-10 – Phoenix, Tucson Eastbound exit and westbound entrance; signed as exits 178A (west) and 178B (east)
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Total mileage is a summation of the two state mileages.


  1. ^ Federal Highway Administration (PDF). Southern California (Map). Cartography by FHWA. Retrieved September 29, 2012.
  2. ^ Federal Highway Administration. Arizona (Map). Cartography by FHWA. Retrieved September 29, 2012.
  3. ^ Adderly, Kevin (August 26, 2010). "The National Highway System". Planning, Environment, and Realty. Federal Highway Administration. Retrieved January 1, 2011. 
  4. ^ "Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail Guide: Imperial County". National Park Service. Retrieved 6 October 2008. 
  5. ^ "Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail Guide: Yuma County". National Park Service. Retrieved October 6, 2008. 
  6. ^ "Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail Guide: Maricopa County". National Park Service. Retrieved October 6, 2008. 
  7. ^ "Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail Guide: Pinal County". National Park Service. Retrieved October 6, 2008. 
  8. ^ California Assembly. "Sections 250–257". Streets and Highway Code. Legislative Counsel of California. Retrieved November 27, 2011. 
  9. ^ California Assembly. "Sections 260–284". Streets and Highway Code. Legislative Counsel of California. Retrieved November 27, 2011. 
  10. ^ Cadd, Dennis (February 13, 2012). "Officially Designated Scenic Highways". Scenic Highway Program. California Department of Transportation. Retrieved March 7, 2012. 
  11. ^ Staff (January 2009). 2008 Named Freeways, Highways, Structures and Other Appurtenances in California (PDF). California Department of Transportation. p. 159. Retrieved March 7, 2012. 
  12. ^ a b c d e Thomas Brothers Maps (2000). California Road Atlas and Driver's Guide (Map). pp. 107, 111, 112, 212, 213, 214, V. ISBN 978-1-58174-110-0.
  13. ^ a b Thomas Brothers Maps (2009). San Diego County Road Atlas (Map). pp. 429–430, 1232–1237, 1251–1252, 1268–1270, 1298–1300. ISBN 978-1-58174-110-0.
  14. ^ a b c d e f Rand McNally (2008). The Road Atlas: United States, Canada, and Mexico (Map). pp. 15,17. ISBN 978-0-528-93961-7.
  15. ^ Acme Maps. Acme Mapper (Map). Cartography by Google, Inc..,-116.08944&z=13&t=T&marker0=41.19886%2C-120.94414. Retrieved April 28, 2013.
  16. ^ Staff (February 29, 2012). "Previous Interstate Facts of the Day". Celebrating the Eisenhower Interstate Highway System. Federal Highway Administration. Retrieved September 29, 2012. 
  17. ^ Pittman, p. 341.
  18. ^ a b Staff (December 31, 2006). "2006 ADOT Highway Log" (PDF). Arizona Department of Transportation. pp. 1–8. Archived from the original on March 26, 2009. Retrieved April 11, 2008. 
  19. ^ Google Inc. "Overview Map of I-8 in Arizona". Google Maps (Map). Cartography by Google, Inc.,32.728310,-114.617480%3B401209425362210788,32.817011,-111.683029&saddr=I-8+E+%4032.728310,+-114.617480&daddr=Exit+178A+%4032.817011,+-111.683029&doflg=ptm&sll=32.795685,-113.150255&sspn=3.181171,5.119629&ie=UTF8&z=8. Retrieved April 11, 2008.
  20. ^ Staff. Exit 200 eastbound overhead (Highway guide sign). Casa Grande, AZ: Arizona Department of Transportation. Retrieved October 27, 2012. 
  21. ^ Public Roads Administration (August 14, 1957). Official Route Numbering for the National System of Interstate and Defense Highways (Map). Cartography by American Association of State Highway Officials.,_1957.jpg. Retrieved April 4, 2012.
  22. ^ a b "Route Renumbering: New Green Markers Will Replaces Old Shields" (PDF). California Highways and Public Works 43 (1–2): 11–14. March–April 1964. ISSN 0008-1159. Retrieved March 8, 2012. 
  23. ^ a b c California State Legislature (1963). "An act...relating to routes on the state highway system". State of California. 1963 chapter 385. 
  24. ^ Yates, Eric (February 6, 2011). "Alvarado Canyon Highway: La Mesa’s First Free-Way Speeds City into Modern Era in 1950". La Mesa Patch. 
  25. ^ Staff (January 6, 1959). "State Asks Bids For Link In U.S. 80 Project Here". The San Diego Union. p. A13. 
  26. ^ Staff (April 23, 1962). "Freeway Link Opens Tomorrow On U.S. 80". The San Diego Union. p. A18. 
  27. ^ Staff (August 23, 1962). "State C of C Urges New Roads in Area". The San Diego Union. p. C17. 
  28. ^ Brooks, Joe (January 7, 1965). "More Freeway Center Barriers Are Planned". The San Diego Union. p. A21. 
  29. ^ California State Legislature (1959). "An act to amend...the Streets and Highways Code, relating to state highways, providing for a California Freeway and Expressway System...". State of California. 1959 chapter 1062. 
  30. ^ Staff (August 27, 1962). "Alternate Routes Studied For Midway Area Freeways". The San Diego Union. p. A17. 
  31. ^ Staff (August 15, 1962). "Light Industry Center Urged For Midway-Frontier Area". The San Diego Union. p. A17. 
  32. ^ Staff (March 16, 1965). "$11 Million Interchange Projected". The San Diego Union. p. A15. 
  33. ^ Staff (May 11, 1966). "Fund Loss Feared For State Highways Under Transit Plan". The San Diego Union. p. A22. 
  34. ^ James, Paul (August 1, 1966). "Interstate 5 Will Have 36 Interchanges For Easy Travel". The San Diego Union. p. B1. 
  35. ^ Brown, Joe (March 26, 1967). "'Stack' Like Plate Of Spaghetti". The San Diego Union. p. B1. 
  36. ^ Staff (December 4, 1966). "$11 Million Interchange To Link Freeways". The San Diego Union. p. B4. 
  37. ^ a b Staff (February 27, 1968). "Interstate 5 and 8 Ramps to Close". The San Diego Union. p. C1. 
  38. ^ Staff (December 29, 1967). "Council Approves 109 Freeway Route". The San Diego Union. p. B3. 
  39. ^ a b Staff (September 24, 1968). "Ground Broken For Beach Freeway". The San Diego Union. p. C3. 
  40. ^ Staff (August 3, 1968). "Interstate 5-8 Revisions Due On Monday". The San Diego Union. p. B1. 
  41. ^ Clance, Homer (February 25, 1969). "2,000 To 3,000 Building Men Idled By Rain". The San Diego Union. p. B8. 
  42. ^ Scarr, Lew (September 26, 1969). "Dedication Of Ocean Beach Freeway Slated". The San Diego Union. p. B1. 
  43. ^ California State Legislature (1972). "An act to amend...the Streets and Highways Code, relating to state highways". State of California. 1972 chapter 1216. 
  44. ^ a b c McVicar, Jim (May 9, 1985). "I-8 grade challenges the motorist". The San Diego Union. p. II7. 
  45. ^ a b c d e McVicar, Jim (May 19, 1970). "San Diego-Yuma Freeway Dream Nearing Fruition". The San Diego Union. p. B3. 
  46. ^ McVicar, Jim (March 7, 1985). "Out of Way-side Ellis Rest stop still remembered". The San Diego Union. p. B4. 
  47. ^ a b c Harrison, Donald (May 25, 1975). "Last Section Of Interstate 8 To Yuma Opens Thursday". The San Diego Union. p. B10. 
  48. ^ Staff (May 28, 1963). "Top Priority Urged On S.D, Oceanside Freeway Sections". The San Diego Union. p. A18. 
  49. ^ Staff (September 24, 1963). "Bids For U.S. 80 Extension Asked". The San Diego Union. p. B1. 
  50. ^ Staff (February 22, 1965). "San Diego County Freeway System". The San Diego Union. p. A3. 
  51. ^ Van Denburgh, Russell (January 7, 1965). "Freeway System Big, Growing". The San Diego Union. p. C6. 
  52. ^ Staff (October 13, 1964). "State To Ask Bids On Alpine Road Link". The San Diego Union. p. B1. 
  53. ^ Staff (February 25, 1965). "Money For Freeway West Of Alpine OKd". The San Diego Union. p. A33. 
  54. ^ Staff (August 7, 1965). "State Awards Freeway Job". The San Diego Union. p. B20. 
  55. ^ Staff (September 29, 1965). "Work Set To Start On New Freeway Link". The San Diego Union. p. A21. 
  56. ^ Staff (November 13, 1963). "State Reviews Low Road Bid For U.S. 80". The San Diego Union. p. A17. 
  57. ^ Staff (May 2, 1963). "Jacumba Grade Opens Tomorrow". The San Diego Union. p. A22. 
  58. ^ a b Ainsworth first= Ed (May 22, 1966). "Jacumba Ready For Big Moment". Los Angeles Times. p. F6. 
  59. ^ Staff (March 26, 1963). "Atom Blasts Won't Build New U.S. 80". The San Diego Union. p. A11. 
  60. ^ Staff (March 9, 1963). "Steel Is Taming Devil's Canyon". The San Diego Union. p. A1. 
  61. ^ Staff (October 30, 1964). "$42 Million County Road Fund OKd". The San Diego Union. pp. A1–A2. 
  62. ^ Staff (May 27, 1965). "$12 Million Allocated for Work on Freeways". Los Angeles Times. p. A2. 
  63. ^ Staff (September 14, 1965). "Bids To Be Sought For Building Freeway In Laguna Mountains". The San Diego Union. p. A15. 
  64. ^ Staff (January 29, 1966). "Contract Let For $3 Million U.S. 80 Job". The San Diego Union. p. B1. 
  65. ^ Staff (August 1, 1967). "Community's Name Argument Resumes". Los Angeles Times. p. A2. 
  66. ^ Staff (April 18, 1967). "$6.5 Million Road Job Let". The San Diego Union. p. B3. 
  67. ^ Staff (May 1, 1967). "Contract Let for Segment of Freeway". Los Angeles Times. p. 28. 
  68. ^ Staff (October 20, 1967). "Smog Problem Eyed By El Cajon Council". The San Diego Union. p. B3. 
  69. ^ Staff (October 22, 1967). "Bid Opening Set on Interstate 8". Los Angeles Times. p. 26. 
  70. ^ Staff (May 12, 1968). "Freeway Building Continues To Tie In County Cities". The San Diego Union. p. B4. 
  71. ^ Staff (August 23, 1968). "3-Mile Interstate 8 Freeway Job Let". The San Diego Union. p. B8. 
  72. ^ Hudson, Ken (September 8, 1968). "Million Points Of Dynamite Slated To Clear Way For Interstate 8 Route". The San Diego Union. p. B2. 
  73. ^ Hudson, Ken (February 12, 1969). "Interstate 8 Alpine Section Opens April 21". The San Diego Union. p. B3. 
  74. ^ Staff (April 20, 1969). "Freeway Link Opens At Alpine". The San Diego Union. p. B2. 
  75. ^ Hudson, Ken (May 23, 1969). "Interstate 8 Section Opened Near Alpine". The San Diego Union. p. B3. 
  76. ^ Staff (January 25, 1970). "Mountain Freeway Link Progresses". The San Diego Union. p. B3. 
  77. ^ a b "County Freeways Dealt $47 Million". The San Diego Union. April 24, 1970. 
  78. ^ Stone, Joe (May 26, 1970). "Highway Group Gets Scenic Tour". The San Diego Union. p. B1. 
  79. ^ Clance, Homer (March 19, 1968). "18 Highway Projects Get Top Priority". The San Diego Union. p. C1. 
  80. ^ Staff (September 22, 1968). "Area's Freeways Losing Race With The Population". The San Diego Union. p. B4. 
  81. ^ Staff (October 22, 1969). "$26.8 Million Freeway Jobs OKd in County". The San Diego Union. p. B3. 
  82. ^ Clance, Homer (August 9, 1970). "Area Freeway Work Costs $107.5 Million". The San Diego Union. p. B1. 
  83. ^ Staff (May 10, 1971). "Improving of Highway Link Sought". The San Diego Union. p. B1. 
  84. ^ Staff (November 26, 1971). "Interstate 8 Bids Called By State". The San Diego Union. p. B3. 
  85. ^ Stewart, John (February 20, 1972). "430-Foot-High Bridge Planned For Route 8". The San Diego Union. p. B3. 
  86. ^ Kistler, Robert (March 29, 1972). "Money Problems Delay $150 Million in Freeway Work". Los Angeles Times. p. A1. 
  87. ^ Staff (January 8, 1974). "Public's Mood Shifts Away From Freeways". The San Diego Union. p. X16. 
  88. ^ Staff (November 24, 1974). "Pine Valley Creek Bridge Dedicated". The San Diego Union. pp. B–1, B–4. 
  89. ^ California Division of Highways (1936). Road Map of California (Map).
  90. ^ a b Staff (August 22, 1966). "Completion Of Freeway Link Nears". The San Diego Union. p. B3. 
  91. ^ Staff (March 28, 1957). "Highway 80 Relocation Outlined". Los Angeles Times. p. B8. 
  92. ^ Staff (October 30, 1964). "$42 Million OKd for County Roads". The San Diego Union. p. A2. OCLC 13155544. 
  93. ^ Staff (June 19, 1966). "High Of 110 Predicted For Today". The San Diego Union. p. A30. 
  94. ^ Staff (September 2, 1967). "Rains Cause Flooding, Power Loss". The San Diego Union. p. B3. 
  95. ^ Hudson, Ken (April 5, 1968). "Freeway 8 To Yuma Seen By '73". The San Diego Union. p. B3. 
  96. ^ California Division of Highways (1961). California State Highway Map (Map).
  97. ^ Shell Oil Company (1965). California (Map). Section W6.
  98. ^ Staff (July 13, 1970). "Interstate 8 Link Ready". The San Diego Union. p. B1. 
  99. ^ MacMillan, Doug (July 24, 1970). "Interstate 8 Link Due By Next May". The San Diego Union (Imperial Valley ed.). p. B1. 
  100. ^ Ruane, Richard (February 21, 1971). "1,200 Miles Of County's Roads Paved". The San Diego Union (Imperial Valley ed.). p. B1. 
  101. ^ Staff (May 18, 1971). "Final Work Being Done On Freeway". The San Diego Union (Imperial Valley ed.). p. B1. 
  102. ^ MacMillan, Doug (April 29, 1971). "Interstate 8 Link To Open Near Holtville Next Month". The San Diego Union (Imperial Valley ed.). p. B1. 
  103. ^ Staff (September 18, 1970). "El Centro Firm's Bid Low For Inspection Station". The San Diego Union (Imperial Valley ed.). p. B1. 
  104. ^ Staff (December 15, 1971). "Vegetable Shipments Up". The San Diego Union (Imperial Valley ed.). p. B1. 
  105. ^ Staff (June 19, 1975). "State Orders Halt In New Road Projects". The San Diego Union. p. B1. 
  106. ^ Staff (October 4, 1975). "$14.9 Million Road Project Awarded To Daley Corp.". The San Diego Union. p. B5. 
  107. ^ Staff (September 21, 1978). "Yuma I-8 Bridge Opens". The San Diego Union. p. B4. 
  108. ^ Trimble, p. 399.
  109. ^ Arizona Highway Department (1921). Tentative 7% System (Map). Retrieved May 4, 2008.
  110. ^ Arizona Highway Department (1926). Map of Arizona (Map). Retrieved May 3, 2008.
  111. ^ Staff (February 7, 1928). "Resolution 1928-P-144". Right-of-Way Resolutions. Arizona Department of Transportation. Retrieved May 4, 2008. 
  112. ^ Arizona Highway Department (1929). Map of Arizona (Map). Retrieved May 4, 2008.
  113. ^ Arizona Highway Department (1930). Condition Map of State Highway System (Map). Retrieved May 4, 2008.
  114. ^ Arizona Highway Department (1931). Condition Map of State Highway System (Map). Retrieved May 5, 2008.
  115. ^ Arizona Highway Department (1934). Condition Map of State Highway System (Map). Retrieved May 4, 2008.
  116. ^ Arizona Highway Department (1935). Road Map of Arizona (Map). Cartography by H.M. DeMerse. Retrieved May 4, 2008.
  117. ^ Trimble, p. 154.
  118. ^ Arizona Highway Department (1963). Road Map of Arizona (Map). 1 in:24 mi. Cartography by Rand McNally. Retrieved May 4, 2008.
  119. ^ Staff (June 20, 1964). "House Unit Lambastes Arizona Road Building". Los Angeles Times. p. 8. 
  120. ^ Arizona Highway Department (1971). Road Map of Arizona (Map). Cartography by Photogrammetry and Mapping Division. Retrieved May 4, 2008.
  121. ^ Staff (September 21, 1973). "Resolution 1973-20-075". Right-of-Way Resolutions. Arizona Department of Transportation. Retrieved May 4, 2008. 
  122. ^ Staff (September 16, 1977). "Resolution 1977-16-A-048". Right-of-Way Resolutions. Arizona Department of Transportation. Retrieved May 4, 2008. 
  123. ^ a b Staff (January 9, 2008). "Interstate 8 Freeway Interchanges" (PDF). California Numbered Exit Uniform System. California Department of Transportation. Retrieved February 5, 2009. 

Works cited[edit]

  • Pittman, Ruth (1995). Roadside History of California. Missoula, Montana: Mountain Press Publishing Company. ISBN 0-87842-318-4. 
  • Trimble, Marshall (2004). Roadside History of Arizona: Second Edition. Missoula, Montana: Mountain Press Publishing Company. ISBN 0-87842-471-7. 

External links[edit]

Route map: Google / Bing