Construction underway on major projects across Oregon
As summer construction season hits full stride, ODOT has a number of major projects under construction around the state. In fact, construction on the Jobs and Transportation Act (JTA) projects is at its peak, even as the final Oregon Transportation Investment Act III bridge project—the $93 million I-84 Sandy River Bridge—is now substantially complete.
The Sunrise Corridor JTA project will extend the Milwaukie Expressway (Oregon 224) from I-205 to SE 122nd Avenue, providing substantial congestion relief on an important freight connector. Construction began in July 2013 and is expected to wrap-up in 2016. The JTA provided $100 million for this $130 million regionally-significant project that will be critical to industrial uses of this economic hub.
The single largest JTA project—the Newberg-Dundee Bypass Phase 1, which will construct a four-mile alternate route to Oregon 99W for local commuter and freight traffic around the congestion in Dundee and Newberg—is now well under way. The project has been divided up into smaller contracts to allow for better opportunity for local contractors to bid on the work. This summer construction will kick off on about half of the main Bypass alignment, which includes two major bridges and four others. Work will continue over the next few seasons, with the project expected to be complete in 2017. This $257 million project is just the first phase of the full bypass project; $192 million of this phase was funded through the JTA.
The I-5 Woodburn Interchange project continues to make progress. This $79.9 million project, $53 million from the JTA, will reconstruct the interchange, improving freight mobility, reducing congestion and enhancing safety. Beams for the new bridge were installed at night in June (watch a YouTube video of the event). The project is expected to be complete in 2016.
The $72 million I-5 Fern Valley Interchange project in Phoenix in the Medford area runs through September 2016. When complete, using $24 million in JTA funds, exit 24 will feature Oregon’s first diverging diamond interchange—in which drivers briefly travel on the left side of the road. This interchange occupies a narrower footprint while moving traffic safely and efficiently and saving right of way costs.
Two JTA projects east of the Cascades are making significant progress this summer. The US 97/Murphy Road project, totaling $28.8 million and mostly funded through the JTA, is expected to be completed by the end of 2015. The project will improve safety and connectivity by constructing an east-west arterial in the south end of Bend, and eliminating the traffic signals at the intersections of U.S. Highway 97 at Pinebrook Boulevard and U.S. 97 at 3rd Street.
The I-84 Spring Creek Climbing Lane project in Union County is also under construction this summer. The project will alleviate bottlenecks that occur when both lanes of the interstate are being used by commercial vehicles, by adding a third lane between mile points 246.6 and 248.1 westbound. The project is expected to be complete in 2015.
ODOT’s goal is to work with its public and private sector partners to reduce fatalities in work zones. We encourage everyone to travel safely through work zones, watching out for workers and changing road conditions and following posted speeds.