G Zone Highways: G8
Bay Area commuters know; you can't always depend on the freeways. With traffic congestion consistently increasing to record highs, commuters face the choice of sitting in freeway traffic or driving longer distances with less traffic via the backstreets. As commuters wish for improved traffic solutions today, so did Thelma Miller in 1946 when she expressed the need for a county highway system to relieve the drive from town to town through crowded city streets.
Upon my trip to San Juan Bautista from San Jose last weekend, Google Maps suggested we avoid the 20 mile-long parking lot known as U.S. Highway 101 south, and instead take the open county highway G8. The time difference between the G8 and 101 only marginally favored the former, however the appeal of driving the scenic open road was enough for me to choose the G8.
The G8 is a county highway that covers urban and rural area. At its southern terminus, the G8 begins from an intersection if State Route 152 in Gilroy. From here in west Gilroy, the G8 winds along the east of the Santa Cruz Mountains towards San Jose’s Almaden Valley. Along the way to San Jose, the G8 passes Croy Road, where the closed Uvas Canyon County Park and Sveadal are located. The Uvas and Chesbro reservoirs rest along the G8 as the road follows the Llagas and Uvas creeks north. Eventually the G8 reaches San Jose through the Almaden Valley, where it uses Almaden Expressway and Road up to its northern terminus at Alma and 1st Street.
Here is a time-lapse video of driving North on the G8. The information used for this blog post was accessed from the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library California Room San Jose Mercury News Clipping Files. Special thanks to my friends at the San Jose Public Library California Room.