INTERSTATE 880 - Nimitz Freeway

Interstate 880 is officially called the "Nimitz Freeway" but it has been nicknamed the "Nasty Nimitz" by the local traffic reporters because of the horrendous backups that can occur on this very busy freeway.

Interstate 880 begins at its junction with Interstate 280 in San Jose and heads north through the cities of Milpitas, Fremont, Union City, Hayward and San Leandro. The freeway was originally signed at State Route 17 but was renumbered in the 1980's.

Exit 377A Exit Number Installed
Exit 377A Exit Number Not Installed

Exit 1A

Southbound Bascom Avenue heads towards the San Jose City College, Campbell and Los Gatos. This major north-south road connects Los Gatos and Santa Clara.

Exit 1B

Northbound Bascom Avenue heads towards the city of Santa Clara and Santa Clara University.

Exit 2

The Alameda is the southern extension of El Camino Real running from Santa Clara University to downtown San Jose. Hwy 82 extends northward to Daly City via El Camino Real and southward to south San Jose via the Monterey Hwy.

Exit 3

The Coleman Avenue exit is the primary way to get to the Mineta San Jose International Airport from Interstate 880. Southbound Coleman Avenue heads into downtown San Jose while northbound Coleman passes through Santa Clara before becoming De La Cruz Boulevard.

Exit 4A

First Street has the main VTA light rail line running down the middle of the street. This makes First Street a narrow 4 or 2-lane street. Within the downtown area, First Street is a one-way street heading north.

Exit 4B

U.S. 101 heads south towards Los Angeles via the very scenic California coast. During it's journey to southern California, Hwy 101 passes through Gilroy, Salinas, San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara.

Exit 4C

U.S. 101 heads north towards San Francisco and is one of two freeways that connect San Jose to San Francisco. U.S. 101 continues north to the Oregon and Washington coasts.

Exit 4D

Although this exit does intersect Gish Road which heads north and east from this interchange, the cross street at the bas of this ramp is actually Old Bayshore Hwy. Heading west, Old Bayshore becomes Zanker Road and turns north towards a number of high tech companies. Heading east, Old Bayshore passes through an older industrial area.

Exit 5

To the west, Brokaw Road becomes Airport Pkwy at First Street and heads into Mineta San Jose International Airport. This section of Interstate 880 between U.S. 101 and Montague Expwy used to be only 4 lanes wide and was the worst bottleneck in the region. In 2003, the freeway was widened to 6 lanes and there are plans to add HOV lanes which would make it 8 lanes wide.

Exit 7

Montague Expwy is part of the county's expressway system and is lined with tech companies located in San Jose, Milpitas and Santa Clara. South of U.S. 101, Montague Expwy becomes San Tomas Expwy.

Exit 8A

The Great Mall of the Bay Area is located east of the freeway. It used to be a Ford assembly plant before it was closed and transformed into a shopping mall.

Tasman Drive heads west from the freeway and passes through the Cisco corporate campus and Great America. There is also a VTA light rail line running down the median of Tasman from Fair Oaks Ave in Sunnyvale to east San Jose.

Exit 8B

West Hwy 237 passes through north San Jose, Santa Clara and Sunnyvale before ending in Mountain View. Eastbound Hwy 237/Calaveras Blvd is a major street through Milpitas. Hwy 237 officially ends at the interchange with Interstate 680.

This exit is also used to access McCarthly Blvd and the McCarthy Ranch shopping center.

Exit 10

Dixon Landing Road straddles Alameda and Santa Clara counties. The Milpitas landfill is located west of the freeway while a mix of residential, commercial and industrial areas are located east of the freeway. This is also a good alternate route to the McCarthy Ranch shopping center if you don't mind a little backtracking.