Interstate 380

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Interstate 380

Routing

Interstate 380 is the Quentin L. Kopp (formerly Gaspar de Portola) Freeway, a short connector freeway between Interstate 280/Father Junipero Serra Freeway and U.S. 101/Bayshore Freeway, with direct freeway connections to the San Francisco International Airport.

Future Aspirations

A controversial extension of Interstate 380 remains officially proposed west of its current terminus at Interstate 280; the California 380 freeway would end at California 1. The westerly extension through San Bruno has been held up by environmental review, community opposition, earthquake considerations (as the route would pass over the San Andreas Fault), and other obstacles. It is unclear if it will ever be constructed.

History

Interstate 380 was established as an Interstate highway in December 1968 per the Federal Highway Act of that year, and the state modified the Streets and Highways Code in 1969 when former California 186 was redesignated as Interstate 380.1 The east end of Interstate 380 is suggested by some as a potential western terminus of a new trans-San Francisco Bay bridge should another crossing be constructed. However, no short to mid-range plans call for construction of any such bridge.

Highway Guide

Interstate 380/Kopp (Portola) Freeway east
We begin the eastbound journey on Interstate 380 on the transition ramp from Interstate 280 south to Interstate 380 east. This two-lane ramp provides a high-speed connection between the two freeways and forms the lowest level of the stack interchange. The roadway shown horizontally in this photo is the unused stub end of Interstate 380. Proposals call for Interstate 380 to be extended as a state route (former California 186, now proposed as California 380) west to California 1, but the extension is controversial and remains unconstructed. Photo taken 11/26/04.
The first exit along Interstate 380/Quentin Kopp Freeway east is Exit 5, Junction California 82/El Camino Real. Airport parking is available at this exit. Use California 82 north to the city of South San Francisco and south to the city of San Bruno. Photo taken 11/26/04.
Interstate 380 is designated as the Quentin L. Kopp Freeway for its entire length. Kopp was a former member of the Board of Supervisors for the city and county of San Francisco and more recent was a judge in San Mateo County (retired in 2004). Photo taken 11/26/04.
Eastbound Interstate 380/Quentin Kopp Freeway reaches Exit 5, Junction California 82/El Camino Real. California 82 is old U.S. 101, and it extends nearly the length of the Peninsula, starting in San Jose and ending in San Francisco. Old Bypass U.S. 101 is mostly the current alignment of U.S. 101 (excluding a few old Bayshore Highway segments). Photo taken 11/26/04.

For rental car return, long-term parking, and airport cargo areas, use the left two lanes to continue east on Interstate 380/Quentin Kopp Freeway. In the distance is Exits 6A-B, Junction U.S. 101/Bayshore Freeway. Photo taken 11/26/04.
The right lane becomes exit only for Exit 6A, Junction U.S. 101/Bayshore Freeway south to San Francisco International Airport and San Jose. The second offramp is Exit 6B, Junction U.S. 101/Bayshore Freeway north to San Francisco. The left lanes will connect to North Access Road to the rental car return and long-term parking. Photo taken 11/26/04.
Eastbound Interstate 380/Quentin Kopp Freeway reaches Exit 6A, Junction U.S. 101/Bayshore Freeway south to the main airport entrance and San Jose. The next exit is Exit 6B, Junction U.S. 101 north to San Francisco and the Bay Bridge (Interstate 80). Photo taken 11/26/04.
This view shows the signage for Exit 6B, Junction U.S. 101/Bayshore Freeway north to San Francisco as seen from the transition ramp from Interstate 380 east to U.S. 101 south. Photo taken 11/26/04.
Collector-Distributor Lanes on ramp from Interstate 380 to U.S. 101 south and San Francisco International Airport Main Entrance
The transition ramp from Interstate 380/Quentin Kopp Freeway east to U.S. 101/Bayshore Freeway south (via Exit 6A) leads to this view. Two lanes of Interstate 380 east traffic merges with the U.S. 101 collector-distributor lane system between the U.S. 101 interchange and the San Francisco International Airport main entrance. Photo taken 11/26/04.
Immediately thereafter, the transition ramp splits, with the left lanes connecting to U.S. 101/Bayshore Freeway south, and the right lanes connect to San Francisco International Airport's main entrance. Photo taken 11/26/04.
Interstate 380/Kopp (Portola) Freeway west
After the traffic signal with North Access Road, westbound Interstate 380/Kopp Freeway begins its short journey to U.S. 101/Bayshore Freeway and Interstate 280/Junipero Serra Freeway. The first exit on Interstate 380 west is Exit 6, Junction U.S. 101 north to San Francisco and south to San Jose. The right lane splits onto U.S. 101, while the left lane continues west on Interstate 380 to California 82/El Camino Real and Interstate 280/Serra Freeway. Photo taken 11/26/04.
The ramp to Exit 6, Junction U.S. 101 north to San Francisco and south to San Jose can be seen from the single lane of mainline Interstate 380 west. The mainline forms the middle level in this complicated interchange between Interstate 380 and U.S. 101, which includes a direct connect access road from the main exit from San Francisco International Airport to Interstate 380 west. Photo taken 11/26/04.
This overhead sign is posted on the onramp from Airport Boulevard and North Access Road onto westbound Interstate 380/Kopp Freeway and U.S. 101 north to San Francisco. Photo taken 11/26/04.
The main lane of Interstate 380 west merges with the onramp from Airport Boulevard. Two flyover ramps (connecting Interstate 380 west with U.S. 101 south and Interstate 380 east with U.S. 101 north) pass over the westbound lanes. Photo taken 11/26/04.
View of Interstate 380 looking west as seen from the transition ramp from northbound U.S. 101 to westbound Interstate 380. Photo taken 11/28/03.
After transitioning from the San Francisco International Airport and U.S. 101, Interstate 380 west immediately meets its first exit, Exit 5C, Junction California 82. California 82/El Camino Real is the original route of U.S. 101 before U.S. 101 was relocated to the Bayshore Freeway. Look at how many lanes are set for west Interstate 380! Photo taken 11/26/04.
Westbound Interstate 380/Kopp Freeway reaches Exit 5C, California 82/El Camino Real. California 82 is old U.S. 101, and it extends nearly the length of the Peninsula, starting in San Jose and ending in San Francisco. Old Bypass U.S. 101 is mostly the current alignment of U.S. 101 (excluding a few old Bayshore Highway segments). Photo taken 11/28/03.
Passing over California 82, this auxiliary sign indicates that the next exit (Exit 5B, Interstate 280 north) provides the connection to Pacifica and Daly City. All remaining traffic is defaulted onto Interstate 280 south at Exit 5A. Exits 4 through 1 are reserved a controversial proposed extension of California 380 west through western San Bruno to to California 1 in Pacifica. Photo taken 11/26/04.
This Interstate 380 west reassurance shield assembly is the only one found on westbound. It is located after the California 82 onramp. Photo taken 11/26/04.
The next exit along Interstate 380 west is Exit 5A-B, Junction Interstate 280/Junipero Serra Freeway. The green overlay panel probably covers up the word "Exit One Mile" or something similar. However, since Interstate 380 now ends at Interstate 280, it is not just an exit; it is an exit-only. Photo taken 11/28/03.
Westbound Interstate 380 approaches Exit 5A-B, Junction Interstate 280. The green overlay panel probably covers up the word "Exit One Mile" or "Right Lanes" (thanks Mark Newton-John for suggestions). However, since Interstate 380 now ends at Interstate 280, it is not just an exit; it is an exit-only. Photo taken 11/28/03.
The "stub end" of westbound Interstate 380 is clearly visible to the left in this photo; all of the lanes are diverted onto the exit ramp for Exit 5A-B, Junction Interstate 280. The exit numbering is probably optimistic, since it assumes that Interstate 380 will be extended west to its intended terminus some five miles west of here, within view of the ocean. Photo taken 11/28/03.
Westbound Interstate 380/Kopp Freeway reaches Exit 5A-B, Junction Interstate 280/Serra Freeway. The two left lanes head south on Interstate 280, and the three right lanes turn north on Interstate 280. Most traffic turning north on Interstate 280 are headed to northbound California 1/19th Avenue, which is the best north-south corridor through the city of San Francisco (in lieu of U.S. 101/Van Ness Avenue). Photo taken 11/28/03.
Scenes Pertaining to Interstate 380
Airport Boulevard north approaching Interstate 380
After the San Bruno Avenue intersection in unincorporated San Mateo County adjacent to San Francisco International Airport, this sign advises that the next right will connect to U.S. 101/Bayshore Freeway north to San Francisco and south to San Jose. Photo taken 11/26/04.
At the same intersection ahead, a left turn connects to Interstate 380/Kopp Freeway west to Interstate 280/Junipero Serra Freeway north to San Francisco and the Golden Gate Bridge and points north via California 1. Photo taken 11/26/04.
At the intersection with the ramps to Interstate 380 is this reflective sign assembly, which was new at the time this photo was taken. Turn left to Interstate 380 west and right to North Access Road, which also connects to Interstate 380 west with access to U.S. 101 north and south. Northbound Airport Boulevard continues north into the city of South San Francisco, and Sign Hill in the distance shows the city's name embedded in green autumn grasses. Photos taken 11/26/04.
North Access Road east approaching Interstate 380
North Access Road acts as a frontage road along the north side of Interstate 380 east of Airport Boulevard prior to a large parking structure that is visible in the distance ahead. The name "North Access Road" refers to its location on the north side of San Francisco International Airport. Note the use of the state name in the Interstate 380 shield on the green guide sign. Photo taken 11/26/04.
Eastbound North Access Road turns due south near the parking structure to meet the east end of Interstate 380 at this traffic signal. Turn left to follow North Access Road east to the north cargo area, north field checkpoint, and U.S. Coast Guard (note blue guide sign). The San Francisco International Airport property is directly south of here (straight ahead). Turn right onto Interstate 380 west to U.S. 101 and Interstate 280 (again note state name in Interstate 380 shield). Photo taken 11/26/04.
San Francisco International Airport Access Road west (Main Exit from the Airport)
This series of photos shows the signage that greets travelers passing through San Francisco International Airport. A direct access ramp connects San Francisco International Airport with Interstate 380 east to San Bruno. These signs are posted on the San Francisco International Airport (SFO) Access Road upon departing the terminal areas. Photo taken 03/19/07.
Interstate 380 leads west to Interstate 280. U.S. 101/Bayshore Freeway south travels to San Jose, while northbound U.S. 101/Bayshore Freeway leads to San Francisco and the Bay Bridge. Use Interstate 380 west to Interstate 280 north to California 1 north for connections to the Golden Gate Bridge. Photo taken 03/19/07.
The next set of signs are Caltrans standard. Traffic for U.S. 101 south departs on the left two lanes, while the right two lanes connect to U.S. 101 north and Interstate 380 west. Photo taken 03/19/07.
Shortly thereafter, Interstate 380 splits to the right and U.S. 101 north splits to the left. Taking the U.S. 101 will provide access to another Interstate 380 ramp, so it's no big deal if you miss the exit to Interstate 380 here. Photo taken 03/19/07.

Footnotes:

  1. California Highways: Route 380 by Daniel Faigin

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Page Updated February 29, 2008.