Work Begins on I-8 Imperial Avenue Interchange Project in El Centro


Interstate 8 / Imperial Avenue Interchange logo

District: District 11 – San Diego and Imperial Counties
Phone: (619) 688-6670

EL CENTRO, Calif.—Crews are gearing up to start work on the Interstate 8 (I-8) Imperial Avenue Interchange Project in the City of El Centro as soon as May 5, according to Caltrans. Construction signs will be posted at the end of the week but traffic impacts for Stage 1 are not expected until early July.

Stage 1 work on the southern portion of I-8 will take eight to ten months to complete and will include closures on southbound Imperial Avenue to eastbound I-8 and eastbound I-8 to northbound Imperial Avenue.

The I-8 westbound off-ramp to Imperial Avenue and westbound on-ramp from Imperial Avenue will remain open during Stage 1. Detours will be along State Route 86 (SR-86)/4th Street, Adams Avenue and Imperial Avenue.

The project will remove the existing bridge and eastbound on- and off-ramps, then reconstruct the structure and the on- and off-ramps in both directions. Construction will include a new entrance loop ramp from southbound Imperial Avenue to eastbound I-8 and create access to the City’s upcoming extension of southbound Imperial Avenue to city areas south of I-8.

Stage 2 work on the northern portion of I-8 is anticipated to take four to six months and is expected to begin in spring/summer 2021. During Stage 2, I-8/Imperial Avenue on- and off- ramps will be fully closed one direction at a time. Motorists will be detoured onto SR-86/4th Street to Adams Avenue to the north or southward to SR-86/4th Street to SR-86/East Heber Road in the community of Heber, then onto State Route 111.

Nighttime full closures of the I-8/Imperial Avenue intersection will take place several times in the duration of the project to set up and take down falsework and tear down the old structure. Motorists will be detoured along Forrester Road, Evan Hewes Highway/Adams Avenue, and SR-86/4th Street.

Caltrans in partnership with the Imperial County Transportation Commission (ICTC) and the City of El Centro announced plans for the two-year project in January with a Public Open House to discuss the project and traffic impacts face-to-face with community members and businesses.

The total cost is approximately $44 million with $42 million funded through the Regional Improvement Program and another $2 million from the Federal Highway Priority Projects Program.

More information about the I-8 Imperial Avenue Project may be found at this link:

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