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Ribbon-cutting celebrates the upcoming opening of the final phase of the Clinton Keith Road extension project

Wed, 25/10/2023 - 05:00

Since the mid-1990s the County of Riverside Transportation Department with the cooperation of several cities and local agencies, initiated an ambitious project to extend Clinton Keith Road from the 215 freeway to Highway 79 to address the need for a six-lane, east-west corridor due to an increase in traffic demand and rapid growth in the French Valley and Murrieta area.

The $88 million project, which began in 2001, was constructed in four phases as funding became available and now, the final phase of Clinton Keith Road is nearing completion.

To celebrate, Third District Supervisor Chuck Washington, the Riverside County Transportation Department and local dignitaries held a ceremonial ribbon cutting on the newly constructed French Valley Creek bridge between Leon and Benton roads.

“Riverside County is the fastest growing county in the state, and much of that growth has occurred right here in the Third District,” Washington said. “This project will provide improved access to French Valley, Lake Skinner, and Wine Country for residents and visitors alike.”

This final phase of the extension project will extend Clinton Keith Road from Leon Road to Highway 79 and will connect with the existing intersection of Highway 79 and Benton Road as the fourth leg of the intersection when it officially opens to traffic by December 2023. Improvements also include the construction of two large drainage culverts and two water quality detention basins for storm water management.

The previous three phases of the Clinton Keith Road extension project included the following improvements:

  • The first phase of the project began with the widening of Clinton Keith Road between the 215 freeway and Whitewood Road to a full six-lane roadway, including a raised median. This portion was completed in 2011.
  • In March 2016, the Transportation Department began extending of Clinton Keith Road from Whitewood Road to Leon Road as a four-lane roadway, including a wide center median. This portion was completed in 2018.
  • In the winter of 2018, the Transportation Department began widening Clinton Keith Road to a six-land roadway with raised median from Whitewood Road to Leon Road. This portion was completed in 2018.

Before the extension of Clinton Keith Road, the only two east-west roads between the 215 freeway and Highway 79 were Los Alamos Road, a two-lane rural winding road, and Scott Road which was heavily congested. Funding for the project came from a variety of sources including the Riverside County Transportation Commission (Measure A), the Western Riverside Council of Governments (WRCOG) Transportation Uniform Mitigation Fee (TUMF), Community Facilities District, and developer fees. Officials and staff of the cities of Murrieta, Temecula, Menifee and Wildomar also participated in and contributed to the success of the project.

Upon completion, the Clinton Keith Road extension project will serve 14,000 vehicles per day with a long-range projection of more than 35,000 vehicles per day.

To learn more about the history of the Clinton Keith Road extension project, visit

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