For years, I’ve been raising concerns about the lack of a plan for emergencies that shut down I-15. Whether it’s a natural disaster or another major incident, these closures can isolate our communities. That’s why I’ve been pushing hard for a backup plan, and I’m thrilled to see a critical step forward.

On April 10, the San Bernardino County Transportation Authority (SBCTA) General Policy Committee approved a $762,899 contract to launch the State Route 247/62 Emergency Bypass Study. This study, funded by a $1 million grant secured by former Assemblymember Thurston “Smitty” Smith, will assess the feasibility of using State Routes 247 and 62 as an alternative route during emergencies.

This is a huge step forward. The State Route 247/62 Emergency Bypass Study will explore how to best utilize these existing roads as a viable alternative to I-15 when the Cajon Pass is closed. Our goal? Minimize the negative impacts of an extended closure.

The study will focus on creating operational strategies to keep essential services moving, including freight transport, personal travel, and emergency response teams. They’ll also factor in existing traffic management plans from law enforcement, transportation agencies, and emergency service providers. With full SBCTA Board approval expected in May, this project is officially on its way. I’m committed to keeping you updated on our progress.