Interstate 5 in California

Interstate 5 in California

Infobox road
alternate_name=San Diego Freeway, Santa Ana Freeway, Golden State Freeway, West Side Freeway

established=August 7, 1947 by FHWA [ California Highways: Interstate Highway Types and the History of California's Interstates] ] July 1, 1964 by Caltrans [ California Highways: Interstate 10] ]
terminus_a=Mexican border at Tijuana
junction=jct|state=CA|I|8 in San Diego jct|state=CA|I|10 in Los Angeles jct|state=CA|SR|99 near Bakersfield jct|state=CA|I|580 near Tracy jct|state=CA|I|80 in Sacramento jct|state=CA|SR|299 in Redding
terminus_b=jct|state=OR|I|5 at Oregon state line
In the U.S. state of California, Interstate 5, a major north-south route of the Interstate Highway System, has its southern terminus at the United States-Mexico border at the San Ysidro crossing. It heads north across the length of California before it crosses into Oregon south of the Medford-Ashland metropolitan area.

This highway links the major California cities of San Diego, Los Angeles, Sacramento, and Redding. Among the major cities not directly linked by Interstate 5 is San Francisco, which is about 80 miles (130 km) west of the highway.

This route is part of the California Freeway and Expressway System [ CA Codes (shc:250-257)] ] and is eligible for the State Scenic Highway System [ CA Codes (shc:260-284)] ] .

Route description

outhern California

Interstate 5 starts at the United States-Mexico border at the San Ysidro border crossing, one of the busiest in the world. [ [ Busiest border crossing] ] Interstate 5 meets Mexican Federal Highway 1 at the border with Baja California, and this highway is the toll road from Tijuana to Ensenada. Interstate 805 begins here, bypassing the bulk of the San Diego metropolitan area.


At Dana Point, I-5 turns inland and heads due north through Mission Viejo to the El Toro Y interchange in southeastern Irvine. From that point, Interstate 405 takes over the San Diego Freeway designation, while I-5 becomes the Santa Ana Freeway as it runs southeast to northwest, passing through major cities and suburbs in Orange and Southern Los Angeles counties.

When the freeway reaches the East Los Angeles Interchange one mile (1.6 km) east of downtown Los Angeles, I-5 becomes the Golden State Freeway. The route continues through the San Fernando Valley and then crosses the Newhall Pass through the Santa Susana Mountains into the Santa Clarita Valley. From there, the Golden State Freeway sharply rises to the north through the Grapevine to eventually cross the Tejon Pass through the Tehachapi Mountains with Path 26 power lines generally paralleling the freeway. The freeway then sharply descends for 12 miles (19 km) from over 4,100 feet (1,250 m) at Tejon Pass to around 1,600 feet (488 m) at Grapevine near the southernmost point of the San Joaquin Valley, approximately 30 miles (50 km) south of Bakersfield and 4 miles (6 km) south from where State Route 99 splits away from it in Wheeler Ridge.

Central and Northern California

From Highway 99 to south of Tracy, I-5 parallels Highway 33, skirting along the far more remote western edge of the great Central Valley, and thus here is removed from population centers such as Bakersfield and Fresno with other state highways providing connections. For most of this section, the Path 15 electrical transmission corridor follows the highway, forming an infrastructure corridor along with the California Aqueduct.

Interstate 580 splits off from I-5 at a point south of Tracy, providing a loop-route connection to the San Francisco Bay Area. After passing Tracy, I-5 heads due north through Stockton and Sacramento before turning due west to Woodland. At Woodland, the interstate heads northwest again towards Dunnigan, where it converges with Interstate 505.

From Dunnigan, I-5 skirts north along the western edge of the Sacramento Valley to Red Bluff. I-5 then enters the Shasta Cascade region, passing through Redding and Shasta Lake before climbing up to near the foot of Mount Shasta. The interstate then travels to Weed and Yreka before reaching the Oregon border.


Historical naming in California

The portion of this highway from Los Angeles, to San Diego, was also co-signed as U.S. Route 101 until late 1964.

The portion of this highway from Lebec to Red Bluff roughly follows old US 99W.

In California, the former western branch of Interstate 5 (the northern end of the spur into the Bay Area) connecting Interstate 80 out of Vacaville to near Dunnigan, previously known as Interstate 5W, was renamed Interstate 505. Interstate 580 running between I-5 and I-80 was also once designated 5W; what is now I-5 (the stretch that runs through Sacramento) had been originally designated Interstate 5E.

October 12, 2007 tunnel fire

In the evening of October 12, 2007, two trucks collided in the southbound tunnel that takes the truck bypass roadway under the main lanes near the Newhall Pass interchange. Fifteen trucks caught fire, killing three people and injuring 10. [ [ - I-5 Closure May Last Until Tuesday ] ] [ [ Investigators advance into tunnel after deadly inferno - ] ]

'Boat Section' repair

Repair of the "Boat Section" in Sacramento began in May 2008. The construction was to take 40 days to complete and would require complete northbound and southbound closures on an alternating schedule. This section had major problems since being built, including being flooded in convert|15|ft|m of water in 1980.

Exit list

:"Note: Except where prefixed with a letter, postmiles were measured in 1964, based on the alignment as it existed at that time, and do not necessarily reflect current mileage. The numbers reset at county lines; the start and end postmiles in each county are given in the county column."

Business routes

National City loop

location=National City, California

Business Loop 5 was a business route of I-5 in San Ysidro, National City, and Chula Vista, California. Business Loop 5 followed the original routing of U.S. Route 101 along Beyer Boulevard, Broadway, Harbor Drive, and Pacific Highway. The route terminated at I-5 at both ends.

The designation was assigned in the 1960s and removed in the 1990s.

an Diego loop

location=San Diego, California

Business Loop 5 was a business route of I-5 in San Diego, California. Business Loop 5 followed the original routing of U.S. Route 101 along Mission Bay Drive and terminated at I-5 at both ends. The designation was removed in late 2004 and early 2005; however, a lone sign still stands on southbound I-5 promoting the route.


External links

* [ History of the Northern Los Angeles County section of Interstate 5] (Photos, text, TV shows)

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