After I wrote the last post, I found a copy of the December 2016 Transportation Concept Report for the portion of SR 86 in District 11:http://www.dot.ca.gov/dist11/departments/planning/pdfs/tcr/2016_TCR_SR_86_IMP.pdf
This new report calls for decommissioning of all of SR 86 south of the western intersection with SR 78 (Segments 1 through 11 as described below). The shared/concurrent/cosigned SR 78-86 would become solely SR 78. The TCR divides up SR 86 into 12 segments:
SEGMENT 1 is from SR-111 to McCabe Road with agricultural fields surrounding the route in the
beginning of the segment. The route begins as a two-lane conventional highway as it enters the
community of Heber that includes two four-way stop sign intersections.
SEGMENT 2 is from McCabe Road to I-8 and traverses from a rural to an urban landscape, north of
McCabe Road in the City of El Centro.
SEGMENT 3 is from I-8 to Main Street in El Centro, known locally as 4th Street
SEGMENT 4 is from Main Street to Adams/North Imperial Avenue and extends from North 4th Street and
merges into Adams Avenue at North 5th Street in the City of El Centro
SEGMENT 5 is from Adams Avenue/North Imperial Avenue (El Centro) to Aten Road (City of Imperial)
SEGMENT 6 is from Aten Road to Barioni Boulevard in the City of Imperial. In this segment, the Imperial
County Airport and Imperial Valley Expo are directly across from one another with North Imperial Avenue
(SR-86) separating the airport land use and the events center.
SEGMENT 7 is from Barioni Boulevard to Legion Road and is known as the Frank A. Story Memorial
SEGMENT 8 is from Legion Road to West Main Street in the City of Brawley. In this segment there are
commercial shopping centers, motels and restaurants on West Main.
SEGMENT 9 is from West Main Street in the City of Brawley to Fredericks Road/Junction SR-78, or the
western edge of the Brawley Bypass, also known as the SR-78 Expressway.
SEGMENT 10 is from Fredericks Road/Junction SR-78 to Forrester Road/Center Street. The highway is a
four-lane conventional highway with commercial businesses that serves the City of Westmorland.
SEGMENT 11 is from Forrester Road/Center Street to West Junction SR-78.
SEGMENT 12 is from West Junction SR-78 to the Imperial/Riverside County Line
See chart on page 5 and text on page 46:
SR-86 primarily functions as a Main Street through the community of Heber and the cities of El Centro,
Imperial, Brawley, and Westmorland with high concentrations of access points and bicycle and
pedestrian crossings. In certain segments, the surrounding land use consists of primarily residential and
commercial centers and the route operates more like a city street rather than an interregional state
highway, normally characterized by higher speeds and limited access points.
In order to have greater control of the design and operation of SR-86, the City of Imperial began
discussions with Caltrans regarding the potential relinquishment of the route within their jurisdiction
from Treshill Road (PM 8.80) to Ralph Road (PM 12.30). A Project Study Report (PSR) was completed for
this portion of the route and upon completion of the rehabilitation outlined in the PSR, the California
Transportation Commission (CTC) can approve the relinquishment to the city. This will allow the City of
Imperial to manage, maintain, and improve the roadway within their community to meet their needs or
vision for the corridor.
In 2011, a Transportation System Analysis and Evaluation (TSAE) Report was developed by Caltrans
District 11 to address and determine the appropriateness of relinquishing portions of the SR-86 from of
SR-111 (PM 0.0) to SR-78 East Junction (PM 24.20). Following the TSAE, a Project Study Report for Project
Development Support was developed in 2013 by Caltrans to request programming for capital support in
the SHOPP program for the relinquishment.
The SR-86 corridor is instrumental in providing goods movement for commodities that enter the country
via the POE’s and for the different agricultural activities in Imperial County. Due to the Main Street
character found in the various cities, trucks often use Forrester Road as a way to bypass the congested
city centers. Originally designed to only facilitate local agricultural traffic, Forrester Road’s function has
evolved to include international cross border traffic.32 As the relinquishment discussions developed with
the local jurisdictions along SR-86, ICTC, Caltrans, and SCAG conducted the Forrester Road Interregional
Corridor Study that examined the possibility of relinquishing the current alignment of SR-86, including
alternatives for a bypass of the City of Westmorland. By superseding Forrester Road as the new state
highway, this alternative would alleviate potential traffic impacts caused by intraregional and interregional
growth and increasing border traffic between Mexico and the United States.
As previously discussed, SR-86 primarily functions as a Main Street through the community of Heber and
the cities of El Centro, Imperial, Brawley, and Westmorland with high concentrations of access points
and high bicycle and pedestrian volumes. In certain segments, the surrounding land use consists of
primarily residential and commercial centers and the route operates more like a city street rather than
an interregional state highway, normally characterized by higher speeds and limited access points.
Therefore, the concept for SR-86 is to relinquish segments (segments 1-9) to allow for the local
jurisdictions to have the final authority on future street improvements and ultimately streamline the
permitting process for their development projects.
Segments 10 through 12 will continue to be part of the state highway system as it serves as a major
goods movement corridor serving the greater Los Angeles area and beyond. There is currently a Break
in Route between the SR-86 west junction and the Brawley Bypass; therefore, segments 10 and 11 will
be designated as SR-78 to provide a continuous alignment for that route.
In the 2013 Imperial County Long Range Transportation Plan, there is a proposed project called the
Westmorland Bypass that allows through traffic to bypass the City of Westmorland. This four-lane
expressway on the new alignment would extend approximately four miles from SR-86/SR-78 near Andre
Road and rejoin SR-86/SR-78 near Lack Road and would be designated as SR-78. Segment 12 would be
maintained as a four-lane expressway as SR-86.