Interstate 805

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Interstate 805

Looking north from the Roscoe E. Hazard Memorial Bridge, Interstate 805 travels north from North Park and Normal Heights toward the Jack Schrade Bridge that crosses Mission Valley, the San Diego River, and Interstate 8. Interstate 805 continues north toward the northern San Diego communities of Serra Mesa, Clairemont, and University City before ending in Sorrento Valley near Torrey Hills.


Interstate 805 is the Jacob Dekema Freeway that provides an alternate route to Interstate 5 through the city of San Diego. Named after Jacob Dekema, a pioneering force from Caltrans who helped shape the San Diego freeway system, Interstate 805 was completed in stages, with the final section opening to traffic in 1975. The highway includes the towering Jack Schrade Bridge over Mission Valley, which carries Interstate 805 over Interstate 8 and connects to that freeway via Diego County's only symmetrical stack interchange.

With eight to ten lanes throughout its approximately 29-mile length, Interstate 805 has evolved into a busy commuter route from the International Border into the exploding South Bay bedroom communities of Chula Vista (including Rancho del Rey and Eastlake) and National City. The freeway passes through the Mid-City community of San Diego, then leads into the relatively new business parks at the Golden Triangle (via Governor Drive and La Jolla Village Drive) and Sorrento Valley. The freeway continues to be very busy as it rejoins Interstate 5 near Carmel Valley.

As more companies locate along the route of Interstate 805 (especially the north end) and more residences are built toward the south end of Interstate 805, more traffic utilizes the route as an important connector to get from home to work. In addition to commuter traffic, the freeway is one of three north-south freeways that reach Mexico: Interstate 5, Interstate 805, and California 125. Traffic to and from the border is very common along Interstate 805; look for cars with "Baja California" or "Frontera Baja California" (sometimes abbreviated to "Front B.C.") license plates on this freeway.

Interstate 805 Guide

Interstate 805 is split into the following pages:


Key Opening Dates of Interstate 805:

  • Interstate 5 to Main Street July 8th, 1975
  • Main Street to Telegraph Canyon Road March 17th, 1971
  • Telegraph Canyon Road to California 54 July 29th, 1975
  • California 54 to Plaza Boulevard April 24th, 1975
  • Plaza Boulevard to California 94 September 4th, 1975
  • California 94 to Interstate 805 March 11th, 1974
  • Interstate 805 to University Avenue July 16th, 1970
  • University Avenue to California 52 March 22nd, 1972
  • California 52 to Interstate 5 October 5th, 1972

Many thanks to C.J. Moon for his assistance in providing this historical chronology.

Highway Guide

Scenes Pertaining to Interstate 805
This trailblazer shield for Interstate 805 is found along eastbound Murray Ridge Road in the Serra Mesa community of the city of San Diego. Photo taken 10/01/00.
Again on Murray Ridge Road, this sign for Interstate 805 north/south is posted at the freeway entrance. The Murray Ridge Road interchange is located just north of Mission Valley in Serra Mesa. This is a fairly typical sign used along city streets at interchanges with Interstate 805, especially on the section through Serra Mesa and Clairemont. Photo taken 10/01/00.
Eastbound Adams Avenue approaches 32nd Street, which provides the direct connection to Interstate 805. Adams Avenue does not directly interchange with Interstate 805 due to the grade difference between the city street and the freeway. Photo taken 04/14/05.
Turn right here to follow 32nd Street south for a block, then turn right to the freeway entrance onto northbound Interstate 805. Photo taken 04/14/05.
In Normal Heights, westbound Adams Avenue crosses over Interstate 805 on the arched Roscoe E. Hazard Memorial Bridge. This bridge was built along with the freeway in 1970, and it is named for Roscoe E. "Pappy" Hazard (18811975), a rancher who was involved in constructing several of the roads and highways around San Diego. For northbound travelers, this bridge frames the trip over Mission Valley on Interstate 805. Photo taken 04/14/05.
Some of the first reflective signs installed in California that displayed an Interstate shield appeared along northeastbound Home Avenue in City Heights at the junction with Interstate 805 (with ramps connecting to California 94/Martin Luther King, Jr. Freeway). These signs were replaced in 1999 as part of the project to install signs on California 94 that designated the Martin Luther King, Jr. Freeway. Photo taken 11/19/05.
The first right turn from northeastbound Home Avenue connects to southbound Interstate 805 and eastbound California 94 (Martin Luther King, Jr. Freeway). The signs for north Interstate 805 are non-reflective, button copy signs that were not replaced in 1999 (and therefore date back to the freeway's construction in the early 1970s). Photo taken 11/19/05.
The second right turn from Home Avenue connects to northbound Interstate 805 (Jacob Dekema Freeway). Photo taken 11/19/05.
A freeway entrance sign is posted as a trailblazer on the transition from Home Avenue eastbound to Interstate 805 northbound. Photos taken 11/19/05.
In Normal Heights, westbound Adams Avenue approaches 32nd Street, which provides the direct connection to Interstate 805. Follow 32nd Street south for a block, then turn right to the freeway entrance. Photos taken 04/14/05.
In North Park, westbound North Park Way approaches 32nd Street, which travels north to University Avenue and offers a connection to Interstate 805 north. Photos taken 12/16/10.
These views of northbound Interstate 805 crossing Mission Valley are afforded from the Adams Avenue Overcrossing (Roscoe E. Hazard Bridge) over Interstate 805 in Normal Heights near North Park in the city of San Diego. Photos taken 04/14/05.
At the Clairemont Mesa Boulevard interchange, eastbound Clairemont Mesa Boulevard meets the transition ramp that loops onto northbound Interstate 805 (Jacob Dekema Freeway). Photo taken 02/16/05.
Westbound Mira Mesa Boulevard approaches its junction with Interstate 805/Jacob Dekema (Inland) Freeway in the Sorrento Valley area of San Diego. Turn right ahead for the connection to Vista Sorrento Parkway north and Interstate 805 north. Photo taken 05/02/10.
The right lane of Mira Mesa Boulevard west will connect to Vista Sorrento Parkway north to Interstate 805/Jacob Dekema (Inland) Freeway north. The left two lanes will continue northwest along Sorrento Valley Road. The middle two lanes will link to Interstate 805 south. Photo taken 05/02/10.
Westbound Mira Mesa Boulevard meets Vista Sorrento Parkway north at this traffic signal. Turn right here to connect to Interstate 805/Jacob Dekema (Inland) Freeway north. The second right is a loop ramp onto Interstate 805 south. Photo taken 05/02/10.
After leaving the Mira Mesa Boulevard intersection, northbound Vista Sorrento Parkway meets the turnoff to Interstate 805/Jacob Dekema (Inland) Freeway north. Photo taken 05/02/10.
Now in the other direction, eastbound Mira Mesa Boulevard approaches the junction with Interstate 805/Jacob Dekema (Inland) Freeway. The first onramp connects to Interstate 805 south to Clairemont, Mission Valley, North Park, National City, and Chula Vista. Photo taken 02/11/11.
Passing under Interstate 805, eastbound Mira Mesa Boulevard approaches the onramp to Interstate 805 north to Interstate 5 north en route to Carmel Valley, Solana Beach, Encinitas, Carlsbad, Oceanside, Santa Ana, and Los Angeles. Photo taken 02/11/11.
A roadside sign points toward the onramp to Interstate 805 north, which requires a brief trip north on Vista Sorrento Parkway. Photo taken 02/11/11.

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Page Updated May 29, 2011.