State Routes 94/125 Direct Connector Ramps And Freeway Widening

DATE: April 13, 1999 
TO: Board of Supervisors 
SUBJECT: STATE ROUTES 94/125 DIRECT CONNECTOR RAMPS AND FREEWAY WIDENING

SUMMARY: 
Issue/Reference:
The purpose of this Board letter is to request that the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) construct as part of the State Route 125 extension project direct freeway connector ramps linking Westbound State Route 94 vehicles to Northbound State Route 125 and Southbound State Route 125 vehicles to Eastbound State Route 94 and other necessary improvements to prevent a "bottleneck" situation once State Route 125 is completed.

Recommendation:
SUPERVISOR JACOB 
1. Adopt the attached resolution requesting that Caltrans include as part of their State Route 125 extension project a full freeway to freeway interchange at the existing State Route 94/125 intersection and any necessary freeway widening to prevent traffic congestion once the State Route 125 extension is complete.

2. Direct the Chief Administrative Officer to draft a letter for the Chairman's signature to be sent to the Director of Caltrans and the Caltrans District 11 Director informing these individuals of the Board's request.

Fiscal Impact:
If approved, this request will result in no additional costs or staff years.

BACKGROUND
Caltrans' State Route 125 extension project will consist of approximately 5.2 miles of a new freeway connecting State Route 54 to an existing segment of State Route 125 and State Route 94 which separates the cities of Lemon Grove and La Mesa. The new section of freeway is expected to carry 150,000 vehicles by the year 2010.

Motorists driving on State Routes 94 and 125 already experience traffic congestion and hazardous freeway backups under current traffic volumes. The traffic problems on these freeways are primarily caused by the narrowing of freeway lanes and the lack of a full freeway to freeway interchange at the State Route 94/125 intersection. Upon completion, the State Route 125 extension will release a significant number of additional vehicles onto State Route 94 and heavily traveled local surface streets located less than one mile from the existing State Route 94/125 interchange. Because the freeway narrows from four lanes to three lanes at this location, the increased traffic will also exacerbate the existing problem by creating a bottleneck situation for motorists.

Without adequate freeway improvements prior to the completion of the State Route 125 extension, the anticipated increase in traffic volume on State Routes 94 and 125 will aggravate the current traffic problems and unnecessarily place motorists at risk.

Last summer, the San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) reviewed a list of freeway interchanges where freeway to freeway moves were not built as a part of the original freeway construction project. The completion of the State Route 94/125 direct connector ramps was ranked as the most important freeway to freeway connection project for the San Diego region.

The State Route 94/125 freeway to freeway interchange is expected to increase the cost of the $267.2 million State Route 125 extension project by approximately eighteen percent. However, without a full freeway to freeway interchange at this location, the additional number of vehicles entering State Route 94 from the new freeway has the potential to severely gridlock an already congested network of local roadways.

I urge you to support the attached resolution asking Caltrans to construct a full freeway to freeway interchange between State Routes 94 and 125 and adequately widen State Route 125 during the construction of the State Route 125 extension project.

Respectfully Submitted,

DIANNE JACOB
Supervisor, Second District