Kern County Public Works
Morning Drive Grade Separation Project

Purpose and Need:

This Project is intended to meet National Goals and Performance Management Measures described under 23 U.S.C. §150, including safety improvements, enhanced infrastructure condition, congestion reduction, improved system reliability, freight movements and economic vitality, environmental sustainability, and reduced project delivery delays.

The purpose of the Project is to eliminate the conflict between vehicles, pedestrians, bicyclists and the railroad through construction of an underpass at the current at-grade crossing on Morning Drive at the Union Pacific Railroad (UPRR).  These improvements are needed to improve public health and safety at a heavily congested intersection experiencing heavy train traffic and high incidences of vehicle collisions.

This project would require two separate structures; one to carry the UPRR tracks over the depressed Morning Drive alignment, the other to carry Edison Highway. Both bridges would be 2-span structures with columns placed in the Morning Drive median. The Morning Drive profile would be lowered to cross underneath the UPRR tracks and Edison Highway. Morning Drive would be widened to the ultimate 6-lane concept between Brundage Lane and Breckinridge Road. Cut slopes at 2:1 would be used where possible along Morning Drive although retaining walls would be utilized at the underpass to minimize the UPRR and Edison Highway bridge lengths.

Due to the elimination of the intersection between Morning Drive and Edison Highway, two connector roads, also known as ‘jug handles’, would be constructed to provide access between the two facilities. The intersections between the jug handles and Edison Highway would be signalized while right-in/right-out access would be provided between Morning Drive and each of the jug handles.  The existing signals at Morning Drive/Brundage Lane and Morning Drive/Breckinridge Road would be modified to accommodate expanded intersections with turn pockets to provide adequate storage for future traffic demand and American Disability Act accessibility.

A cul-de-sac would be constructed on the west side of Morning Drive, north of the railroad, to provide access to several properties. Entry to and exit from the cul-de-sac would be limited to right-in/right-out due to the close proximity to the Morning Drive/Breckenridge Road intersection.

The Project is listed in the planning documents listed below.


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