News Release

06.27.2024 | News Release

SANDAG Breaks Ground on Imperial Avenue Bikeway 

Bikeway Project Incorporates Safety Improvements, Community Artwork, and Connects to New Affordable Housing

SANDAG and San Diego County Board of Supervisors Chairwoman Nora Vargas was joined by local leaders and bike advocates on Thursday morning to celebrate the groundbreaking of Imperial Avenue Bikeway. 

“The groundbreaking of the Imperial Avenue Bikeway is a commitment to creating safer streets and increasing equitable mobility for our community. Many people use Imperial Avenue for everyday transportation, and giving them a more convenient travel option is going to positively transform their connections across the region,” said SANDAG and San Diego County Board of Supervisors Chairwoman Nora Vargas. “These investments ensure our transportation system remains faster, fairer, and cleaner and that everyone has access to the best quality of life for generations to come." 

The 3.5-mile bikeway project will help create safer streets for people who walk, bike, drive, and take transit through Southeastern San Diego. The Imperial Avenue Bikeway will feature separated and buffered bike lanes, high-visibility crosswalks, curb extensions, shared lane markings, and other street improvements that facilitate connectivity for all road users.

“Every person in every neighborhood should have the opportunity to safely and affordably get around our city. Today’s groundbreaking honors that commitment the City of San Diego made to all residents,” said City of San Diego Council President Sean Elo-Rivera. “The Imperial Avenue Bikeway will connect Southeastern San Diego communities with the rest of our region and will help achieve our goal to decrease traffic, increase safety, and provide more people with affordable mobility options.”

The Imperial Avenue Bikeway will run along Imperial Avenue from 17th Street to 47th Street, and once completed, it will connect to the regional bike network. The project spans four districts in the City of San Diego and will provide access to the communities of Lincoln Park, Mountain View, Logan Heights, Stockton, Grant Hill, and East Village.

The Imperial Avenue Bikeway is part of the Regional Bike Plan Early Action Program, an initiative approved by the SANDAG Board of Directors in 2013. As part of the initiative, SANDAG has built 23 miles and will soon start construction on 17 additional miles. The Imperial Avenue Bikeway is one of 16 bike projects underway by SANDAG.

The approximately $25 million project is funded by a combination of state and local funds, including TransNet, the regional half-cent sales tax for transportation administered by SANDAG, and a grant from the state’s Active Transportation Program.

“This is exciting news for the community,” said Caltrans District 11 Deputy Director Karen Jewel. “This new bikeway will create safer streets and provide more transportation opportunities for people, connecting Southeast San Diego to Downtown. In addition, Caltrans is partnering with two non-profit organizations and more than a dozen local artists to beautify public spaces and add community murals along Imperial Avenue where the bikeway crosses the state transportation system.”

In addition, a portion of the bikeway was funded through an Affordable Housing & Sustainable Communities grant awarded to Community HousingWorks. This grant helped build more than 70 affordable housing units and enhanced infrastructure in underinvested neighborhoods, providing active transportation options while preserving the communities’ unique historic characters.

“Community HousingWorks greatly appreciates its ongoing partnership with SANDAG given our shared commitment to equitable and accessible opportunities for residents of San Diego County,” said Community HousingWorks Senior Vice President of Housing and Real Estate Development Kevin Leichner. “It is fortunate when opportunities to advance equity and access overlap to build permanently affordable housing side-by-side with significant pedestrian, bikeway, and complete street improvements.”

The Imperial Avenue Bikeway is anticipated to open to the public in 2026.