Imperial Highway

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Imperial Highway
LosAngelesSign-Imperial Highway.png
Imperial Highway street sign in Los Angeles
Part of
Maintained byLocal jurisdictions, Caltrans (for the portion between SR 39 and SR 91)
Length105 mi (169 km)
Nearest metro stationLAMetroLogo.svg Willowbrook/Rosa Parks station
South end I-8 / SR 98 / CR S80
North endVista Del Mar in Playa Del Rey

The Imperial Highway is a west-east thoroughfare in the counties of Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Diego, and Imperial in California. The main portion of the existing route begins at Vista Del Mar in Los Angeles near the Los Angeles International Airport and ends at the AnaheimOrange city line at Via Escola where it becomes Cannon Street. Historically, the Imperial Highway extended from Vista Del Mar to Calexico, where a portion of the highway still exist. The original route was replaced with other highways, rendering the older portions of the Imperial Highway to fall out of use.[1]


The total length of the Greater Los Angeles portion of the Imperial Highway is approximately 41 miles (66 km), of which 14 miles (23 km) run through Orange County and 27 miles (43 km) through Los Angeles County.

Between SR 91 and SR 39, Imperial Highway is signed as State Route 90. A de facto freeway portion of the route in Yorba Linda is also known as the Richard M. Nixon Parkway.

The portion in Los Angeles County between Lakewood Boulevard and Valley View Avenue is located about one mile north of, and runs parallel to, Rosecrans Avenue.


Starting from Cannon Street & Via Escola in Orange, going east to west Cannon Street becomes Imperial Highway upon entering Anaheim. The highway then passes through the cities and communities of Anaheim Hills, Yorba Linda, Placentia, Brea, Fullerton, La Habra, La Mirada, Santa Fe Springs (some sections in La Mirada and Santa Fe Springs are next to unincorporated LA County), Norwalk, Downey, South Gate, Lynwood, Los Angeles (Watts, and South LA – a portion after South LA is in unincorporated LA County), Inglewood, Hawthorne, El Segundo (southside of street only), and Westchester (part of Los Angeles on the northside). Imperial Highway ends at Dockweiler Beach on Vista Del Mar near Playa Del Rey, just past LAX.


Along its route, Imperial Highway crosses over or under these freeways from west to east:

  • Interstate 105
  • Interstate 405
  • Interstate 110
  • Interstate 710
  • Interstate 605
  • Interstate 5
  • California State Route 57
  • California State Route 91


Metro Local lines 120 and 625 run through Imperial Highway, as well as Norwalk Transit line 4; Metro line 625 runs between Pershing Drive and La Cienega Boulevard, Metro line 120 between Aviation Boulevard and Norwalk Station, and Norwalk line 4 between Norwalk Station and Beach Boulevard. Imperial intersects with the Metro Blue and Green Lines at Wilmington Avenue in Willowbrook at the Willowbrook/Rosa Parks station.

Western terminus coordinates (El Segundo): 33°55′50.91″N 118°26′5.42″W / 33.9308083°N 118.4348389°W / 33.9308083; -118.4348389
Eastern terminus coordinates (Anaheim): 33°50′7.76″N 117°47′43.32″W / 33.8354889°N 117.7953667°W / 33.8354889; -117.7953667


Imperial Highway was initially conceived as a commercial route connecting Imperial County to Los Angeles County.[2] A segment remains today in Imperial County which connects Interstate 8 near Ocotillo, California. Another segment adjacent to Lake Elsinore (Riverside County) was once indicated on 1960s vicinity maps by H.M. Gousha (Gousha), publisher of street maps.[citation needed]

Other uses[edit]

There are other Imperial Highways in the United States, including one in San Diego (better known as Imperial Avenue) and in the Detroit suburbs of Redford Township, Michigan and Westland, Michigan. Westland's version runs two blocks, northeast from Hambleton Street, across John Hauk Road and stopping at Pardo Street.[citation needed]


  1. ^ California Highways
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2017-04-22. Retrieved 2017-12-05.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  • Brigandi, Phil (Spring 2010). "From the Desert to the Sea: The Story of the Imperial Highway". The Riverside County Chronicles. Riverside County Historical Commission; Riverside County Regional Park and Open-Space District (2): 29–34. ISBN 978-1547004010.

External links[edit]

Media related to Imperial Highway at Wikimedia Commons