Lake Hodges Bridge

The Lake Hodges Bridge is a component of Interstate 15 that spans Lake Hodges in San Diego, just south of the city limits of Escondido, California. Lake Hodges Bridge is an important part of San Diego's north-south transportation axis.

Lake Hodges Bridge
Lake Hodges Bridge.jpg
Lake Hodges Bridge (background) and David Kreitzer Lake Hodges Bicycle Pedestrian Bridge (foreground), as seen from Bernardo Mountain, facing east
Coordinates33°03′33″N 117°04′11″W / 33.059156°N 117.06976°W / 33.059156; -117.06976Coordinates: 33°03′33″N 117°04′11″W / 33.059156°N 117.06976°W / 33.059156; -117.06976
Carries I-15
CrossesLake Hodges
LocaleSan Diego, California
Construction end1919

The original bridge was constructed in 1919. The bridge later became integrated into the newly constructed U.S. Route 395. As part of a roadway realignment and improvement project, the original structure was demolished in 1968,[disputed ] and replaced with a new structure in 1969. That bridge was subsequently replaced in 1981, when I-15 was built to supersede US 395.

As a traffic bottleneck, the bridge is vulnerable to traffic jams in North San Diego County. The nature of the lake and the surrounding land makes the bridge the singular access into the city of San Diego from inland North County. The only two major ways around the bridge are the Del Dios Highway, a two-lane winding road to Interstate 5 via Del Mar, and the 25-mile (40 km) trip through Ramona into Escondido. Although paved access roads through the San Pasqual Valley to the east of Lake Hodges do exist, they are lightly traveled and are not designed to handle heavy traffic. The bridge is thus effectively the only crossing point for drivers on the route.

The current bridge is a concrete viaduct. It was widened and replaced in 2006-2009 as part of a project to add managed lanes in the I-15 corridor.

Depending on the amount of rainfall in San Diego County, Lake Hodges's water level fluctuates significantly. As such, Lake Hodges Bridge may cross over water or a dry lake bed from time to time. Due to the vast amount of vegetation that springs up when water levels are low, the area below the bridge has been jokingly referred to as "Hodges National Forest".

Lake Hodges Pedestrian BridgeEdit

The Lake Hodges Pedestrian Bridge, officially named the David Kreitzer Lake Hodges Bicycle Pedestrian Bridge after a retired planning commissioner,[1] is a pedestrian bridge spanning Lake Hodges immediately south of the Interstate 15 span. The bridge was opened to the public on May 15, 2009.[2]

The bridge is of a stress-ribbon design, the longest of its type in the world, and only the sixth to have been built in the US. From end to end the bridge measures 995 feet (303 m). This design was chosen for having the least impact on environmentally sensitive habitats in the construction area.[3]


  1. ^ Gary Warth (March 28, 2009). "ESCONDIDO: Opening near for Lake Hodges bridge". North County Times. Archived from the original on April 10, 2009. Retrieved 2009-04-06.
  2. ^ David Garrick (May 15, 2009). "ESCONDIDO: Lake Hodges pedestrian, bike bridge opens $10M span connects trails in Escondido, RB". North County Times. Archived from the original on August 2, 2009. Retrieved 2009-05-17.
  3. ^ Linda Lou (November 28, 2008). "Bridge over lake takes shape". San Diego Union-Tribune. Retrieved 2008-11-28.