Latest reports indicate that SR-52 will be open to traffic on Tuesday, March 26. Time to start planning your new routes. Check out the ribbon cutting celebration here.
Category Archives: SR-52 Construction
Several thousand people joined local, state, and national representatives to celebrate the completion of the final section of SR-52 through the city of Santee on Saturday, March 19, 2011. The festivities included speeches, a ceremonial ribbon cutting, a flyover by aircraft from the upcoming Gillespie Air Show and a three-mile fun run/walk/bike ride. A classic and green car show, vendor and organization booths and music rounded out the entertainment.
One of Santee’s adopted U.S. Marine Corps units, Heavy Marine Helicopter Squadron 462 from Miramar MCAS, provided the guard for the presentation of colors and Pledge of Allegiance and Pastor Tony Foglio of Sonrise Community Church gave the invocation. As a special treat, former SANDAG (San Diego Association of Governments) staffer Mike Hicks performed a song dedicated to the opening, written to the tune of “Battle of New Orleans.”
Radio personality and former Santee resident “Shotgun” Tom Kelly acted as Master of Ceremonies for the presentation of dignitaries. Current Mayor Randy Voepel introduced the color guard and Pastor Foglio, and Santee Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Warren Savage led the Pledge of Allegiance. Former Mayor and current City Councilman Jack Dale, who was instrumental in pushing for the completion of the freeway, fired up the crowd as he raised his fist and shouted out, “It’s done!” He then went on to talk about the trials of getting the project and introduced other speakers including Congressman Duncan D. Hunter and County Supervisor Diane Jacob. Congressman Hunter drew laughs when he assured the crowd that, unlike a traditional politician, he would not claim responsibility for completing the freeway. He did promise to pass Dale’s thanks along to his father, former Congressman Duncan Hunter, who had been instrumental in securing funding for parts of the freeway project.
After the speeches the dignitaries, joined by the new Miss Santee and Miss La Mesa Pageant winners, gathered for a ceremonial ribbon cutting on the westbound lanes of the new SR-52. The aircraft made two flyover passes, one before the cutting and one after, and the Santana High School Marching Band performed following the ceremony. Once the road had been cleared several hundred bicycle riders of all ages started off on their fun ride, followed by the runners and walkers. It was nearly impossible to get an accurate count of all the participants as more arrived after the official beginning. Once they had completed the three-mile route, participants were routed across to the eastbound lanes where the car show and vendor booths were set up. In addition, the local Country band Emerald River performed on the stage after the ceremony.
State Route 52 (SR-52) is a 17.7 mile freeway that stretches from La Jolla on the coast to SR-67 on the east side of Santee. The project was built in multiple stages, reaching the outskirts of Santee and connecting to SR-125 before hitting a 17-year delay. Construction on the final 3.5 mile portion began in 2008 and final touches will be applied over the next week in preparation for its scheduled opening to use on March 26. After that time it will no longer be legal or safe to lie down on the freeway.
For more photos of the day, visit SR-52 Celebration on Picasa
After waiting for years the completion of the SR-52 from SR-125 to SR-67 is almost here. This will create the final link between Santee and La Jolla (which I’m sure Mayor Randy Voepel will find satisfying for more than one reason), and should help alleviate some of the heavy traffic on Mission Gorge Road through the center of town.
To celebrate this event there will be a community festival on Saturday, March 19, and will include a ribbon cutting ceremony, a 3-mile run/walk/ride, and entertainment. To me, this would indicate that the freeway may be open for business by Monday, March 22, but we will have to see about that. I will have more details on the festival when they are available.
You can learn more about SR-52 at the links below.
This week CalTrans will be closing SR-67 between Prospect Ave. and Woodside Ave. from 9:00 pm to 5:00 am on 12/20-21, 12/21-22, and 12/22-23 (Sunday through Wednesday). They will also be closing the Magnolia Ave. on ramp to SR-67 each night starting at 8:00 pm. This is part of the continuing work on the SR-52 extension, which is still scheduled for completion in 2010.
I have been remiss on updating the work along SR-52, so I suppose it is about time to post again. For various reasons I did not get many pictures during October, but I do have several from September and November. So, without further delay, continuing work on SR-52.
September 29, 2008
View from the hills south of SR-52 along SR-125
SR-52 bridge over Fanita Drive
There are still some inconveniences – Construction at the end of Granite House Road
Framing for bridge support at Cuyamaca Street
September 30, 2008
Work continues on the future SR-52/SR-67 Interchange
Cut for future bridge and reinforcing for bridge support
Drilling footings for another bridge at SR-67
October 14, 2008
A fire caused by a welder’s torch damaged the forms for the Cuyamaca Street bridge
November 18, 2008
I came across this work one day and fortunately had my camera with me as I drove south on SR-125. The supports for one of the bridges across SR-125 was in the process of being removed, and there had been a traffic backup as they moved some of the material.
Close up of support removal
November 30, 2008
Finishing work on west support at Cuyamaca Street
North end of Cuyamaca Street bridge support
This brings us up to date as far as pictures that I have. Stay tuned for future updates.
Work on SR-52 continues – maybe we will even see it finished on time (not holding my breath on that, though). The major rerouting from Mission Gorge to SR-125 is done, but now it has moved west to where the road goes under the 53-125 exchange. Meanwhile, CalTrans has put in a new on ramp from Magnolia to SR-67 South (although last time I was over there it was closed while they had a crane doing work alongside the freeway). There is also work going on for the bridge over Cuyamaca Street. Below are a few pictures from the work at Cuyamaca and SR-125, arranged by date.
Northbound on SR-125 nearing SR-52 on July 2, 2008
Future SR-52 bridge at the SR-125 on ramp, July 2, 2008
Site of the future SR-52 bridge over Cuyamaca St., July 22, 2008
Extension of eastbound SR-52 over SR-125, August 13, 2008
The future extension of westbound SR-52 and possibly the off ramp to Mission Gorge Rd., August 13, 2008
This might be a future off ramp from westbound SR-52 to Mission Gorge Rd., August 13, 2008
Construction of SR-52 over Mission Gorge Rd., August 13, 2008
Looking south along SR-125 from Mission Gorge Rd., August 13, 2008
Stay tuned for more updates as SR-52 snakes its way across Santee to an eventual rendezvous with SR-67.
If you have caught the SR-125 from Mission Gorge Road lately, then you have had the joy of the new “merge” as Caltrans moves forward on the extension of SR-52 east to SR-67. The first couple times I ran through there it was a total mess, with people trying to beat each other to the merge, and no one willing to back off. This is especially frustrating when that sort of impolite behavior leaves you stuck in the middle of the intersection after the light turns red. But the last few times I’ve taken 125 the merge has been much easier to deal with. I attribute this to the underlying decency and politeness of Santee drivers, and the likelihood that people have quickly learned that taking turns rather than trying to be first makes it faster for everyone. So congratulations, Santee – you’re showing your good driver skills.
Now, about SR-52. We all know that 52 will extend to 67, and we all hope that it will help cut down the traffic on Mission Gorge Road and Mast Boulevard. Here is the lowdown on the construction to come. According to a report released by the Department of Transportation (i.e. Caltrans), the project will build three miles of freeway just north of and roughly parallel to Prospect Avenue. The work began last year, following the re-channelling of Forester Creek, and should be completed by late 2010. The extension of 52 will include interchanges at Fanita Drive, Cuyamaca Street, and Magnolia Avenue, and this stretch is expected to carry about 110,000 cars a day by 2025. Currently the projected cost of the project is $447 million, but we will have to wait and see how that shakes out.
I know that the next few years will still have their share of driving headaches as streets are blocked, rerouted, and otherwise jumbled to allow for the required construction, but by 2011 we should have a straight shot from 67 all the way out to I-5. That will be a nice change.