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Paper Highways: California State Route 81

California State Route 81 is a never constructed thirty-one-mile State Highway which was located in the Inland Empire area.  California State Route 81 was defined as part of the 1964 State Highway Renumbering over what had been part of Legislative Route Number 276.  California State Route 81 is presently defined as being routed from Interstate 215 east of Riverside to Interstate 15 south of Devore.  Above the blog cover photo depicts the planned California State Route 81 can be seen as it appeared on the 1970 Division of Highways Map.  


The history of California State Route 81

What was to become California State Route 81 entered the State Highway System via 1959 Legislative Chapter 1062 as Legislative Route Number 276.  The original definition of Legislative Route Number 276 was as follows:

"Legislative Route Number 78 (US Route 395) east of Riverside to Legislative Route Number 193 south of Devore."

From the outset Legislative Route Number 276 was part of the Freeway & Expressway System which had also been codified during 1959.  Legislative Route Number 276 first appears on the 1960 Division of Highways Map with no adopted routing.  


As part of the 1964 State Highway Renumbering the Legislative Route Numbers were dropped.  Legislative Route Number 276 subsequently became California State Route 81.  The original definition of California State Route 81 was as follows:

"Route 395 east of Riverside to Route 31 south of Devore."

California State Route 81 appears for the first time on the 1964 Division of Highways Map.  

California State Route 81 never was referenced in the California Highways & Public Works before the publication ended during 1967.  California State Route 81 never at any point has had a formally adopted routing.  

1969 Legislative Chapter 294 changed the southern terminus of California State Route 81 to "Route 15" which reflected the change of alignment of Interstate 15 over what had been US Route 395.  The new southern terminus of California State Route 81 at Interstate 15 appears on the 1970 Division of Highways Map.  


1976 Legislative Chapter 1354 changed the southern terminus of California State Route 81 to "Route 194" which reflected the change of alignment of Interstate 15E over what had been Interstate 15.  The designation of California State Route 194 was utilized as a loophole to get around the numbering duplication of Interstate 15 and prohibition of suffixed routes.  Interstate 15 had been shifted to what had previously been designated as California State Route 31.  The new terminus points of California State Route 81 appear on the 1977 Caltrans Map.  


1982 Legislative Chapter 681 changed the southern terminus of California State Route 81 to "Route 215" which reflected the designation of Interstate 215 over what had been Interstate 15E/California State Route 194.  The new southern terminus of California State Route 81 at Interstate 215 appears on the 1986 Division of Highways Map.  


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