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Paper Highways; California State Route 64 the unbuilt Malibu Canyon-Whitnall Freeway

This issue of Paper Highways examines the history of unbuilt California State Route 64; the Malibu-Whitnall Freeway.



The History of unbuilt California State Route 64 and the Malibu Canyon-Whitnall Freeway

CA 64 is an unbuilt freeway which would have originated at CA 1 near Malibu in Los Angeles County.  CA 64 was intended ascend the Santa Monica Mountains northward via Malibu Creek where it would have briefly entered Ventura County near Calabasas (this segment would have been known as the Malibu Canyon Freeway).  CA 64 from the Ventura County line would have swung east to the junction of I-5/Golden State Freeway and CA 170/Hollywood Freeway (this segment was to be named the Whitnall Freeway).  CA 64 if constructed would have been about 30 miles in length.




According to CAhighways.org the origin of CA 64 can be traced back to 1958 when plans for the Whitnall Freeway were announced.  The Whitnall Freeway was named after a Los Angeles City Planner by the name of Gordon Whitnall.  Gordon Whitnall had a major hand in roadway development in the City of Los Angeles during the early 20th Century.  The planned Whitnall Freeway was adopted into the State Highway System in 1959 as part of Legislative Route 265.

LRN 265 was originally intended to end at CA 1 via the corridor of Malibu Canyon Road.  LRN 265 was to have ended at US 99/LRN 4 at the planned route of the Golden State Freeway.  LRN 265 can be seen for the first time on the 1960 Division of Highways State Map.


According to CAhighways.org the route of LRN 265 through the Santa Monica Mountains was first studied in 1963.  LRN 265 was reassigned as CA 64 during the 1964 State Highway Renumber.  CA 64 can be seen for the first time on the 1964 Division of Highways State Map.  CA 64 is shown to having a planned terminus at I-5/US 99 on the Golden State Freeway and a junction with CA 170 on the planned Hollywood Freeway extension. 


The Malibu Canyon-Whitnall Freeway appears in the March/April 1965 California Highways & Public Works Guide in an article regarding planning studies.





The Malibu Canyon-Whitnall Freeway alignment is shown to have been discussed by the California Highway Commission on June 8th 1966 in the November-December 1966 California Highways & Public Works Guide.


The planned route of CA 64 is shown to have been shifted to a terminus at a mutual junction with the Hollywood Freeway and Golden State Freeway on the 1967 Division of Highways State Map.


The 1967 Division of Highways Map shows CA 64 to have an adopted alignment from CA 1 at Malibu Cree north of Calabasas.


The planned junction of CA 1 and CA 64 at Malibu Creek is shown in a 2015 Malibu Surf article.


The entire route of CA 64 is shown to have a fully adopted alignment on the 1969 Division of Highways State Map.



According to CAhighways CA 64 between CA 1 and US 101 was deleted from the Freeway & Expressway System during November 1970.  The alignment of CA 64 between US 101 and I-5/CA 170 was rescinded by the California Transportation Commission during July 1973.  The reminder of CA 64 between US 101 and CA 170/I-5 was deleted from the Freeway & Expressway System during January of 1976.  CA 64 appears without an adopted alignment on the 1975 Caltrans State Map.


Despite having it's adopted alignment abandoned long ago the State Legislative has yet to delete CA 64.  CA 64 still appears as a planned highway on the 2005 Caltrans Map.



Had the Malibu Canyon-Whitnall Freeway been constructed it's approach from I-5 south would have likely been a split junction with CA 170/Hollywood Freeway.  One can almost imagine CA 64 been co-signed with CA 170 at an Exit from I-5 south.





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