Revised: July 7, 2014
Traffic is currently in this configuration on Barbur Boulevard through this project area.
The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) is rehabilitating two bridges on SW Barbur Boulevard (OR 99W), just south of Capitol Highway in the Hillsdale area. The start of preliminary construction will be the week of June 2, 2014. The single lane closures will start on Tuesday, June 10.
Background: The Newbury Street and Vermont Street bridges were built in 1934 to cross two ravines. Both are in need of repair due to water seeping inside the joints which causes the steel rebar inside the bridge deck to rust as well as other damage.
ODOT will repair the concrete deck of both bridges at the bridge joints. In addition, ODOT will improve drainage, improve the ramps leading to the existing walkways, install a taller safety railing, and replace signs on both bridges.
Construction Traffic Impacts—Revised June 13, 2014
Construction started on June 9. The project is planned to be complete in late October 2014. Most of the work will be done during the day but there will be some limited night and weekend work.
Full lane closures began on June 10. Traffic will be restricted to one lane in each direction 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and continue until the project is complete in the fall. The closures will be on Barbur Boulevard between the Capitol Highway exit on the north end and Brier Place on the south end. The result will be more daytime congestion on Barbur Boulevard in this area.
Two Weekend Closures and Detours
It is necessary for the contractor to close the southbound-only lanes of Barbur Boulevard between Capitol Highway and Terwilliger Boulevard for two weekends, one in June and one in July. The closures will be from Friday at 9 p.m. until Monday at 5 a.m.
Southbound traffic on Barbur will be detoured on to Capitol Highway and Bertha Boulevard, then back to Barbur. Access to Parkhill Drive during the detour will be from Terwilliger.
Some work at night may also be necessary and the specific dates will be announced later.
Lower Speed Limit During Construction
The speed limit in the work zone will be reduced to 35 miles per hour, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The current speed limit is 45 miles per hour. There will also be increased speed enforcement during the project on Barbur Boulevard.
Bicyclists To Share Wider Travel Lane with Motorists
Bicycles will not be required to detour off Barbur Boulevard at any point during construction.
During the daytime construction on each bridge, bicyclists will share a wider travel lane (14 feet versus the current 12-foot lane) with motor vehicles.
When feasible, the contractor will open a protected lane for cyclists through the work zone, in the evening and on weekends. Cyclists may travel this lane on weekday evenings from 4:30 p.m. to 6 a.m. and throughout the weekend, when available. Signs will direct cyclists when the lane is open. If the lane is not open, cyclists will continue to share the travel lane with motorists. Lighting is provided to illuminate the work zone.
The new bicycle beacons activation sensors will be inaccessible, during periods when the shared lane closest to the beacon is closed for construction.
Work Affects Pedestrians
The bridge walkways will be closed in one direction during construction on each bridge.
TriMet Bus Stops Closed
The TriMet bus stops near the two bridges will be closed intermittently during the project. These are the stops, in both directions by the Capitol Highway exit and Parkhill Drive. The closest open bus stops will be at the Rasmussen Village Apartments at the north end and Southwest 2nd Avenue at the south end of the project. The northbound stop at Brier Place may be open during construction.
The intersection of Barbur Boulevard and Parkhill Drive may be closed periodically.
Most all work will occur during the day. There will be some nighttime noise. A hotline phone number is available 24/7 for people to call to report urgent noise concerns or complaints. The number is 503-412-2350.
Grind and repave the decks of both bridges
Replace the wooden caps on the Vermont Street bridge with steel to prevent future cracking and rotting
Remove and replace the concrete around the 29 joints that cross the decks of both bridges
Install taller pedestrian/bicycle safety railing on both bridges
Repair walkways, ramps and curbs on both bridges
Install automatically triggered “Bikes on Bridge” flashing warning signs on both bridges that don’t require riders to stop and push a button. The signs will be activated in March.
The Vermont Street Bridge is one of only a few bridges in Portland that still has wooden caps, which bear the weight of the bridge at both ends. The caps are rotting and cracking due to water seeping in and around them over the years. If these wooden caps are not replaced soon, the Vermont Street Bridge will be weight restricted, which would prevent heavy vehicles, like trucks and TriMet buses, from using this section of SW Barbur Boulevard. This project will replace the wooden caps with steel caps
for more information on traffic impacts
during the project.
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Location of the Two Bridges on OR99W (Barbur Boulevard).
North is to the right and Interstate 5 is visible below Barbur.
Budget and funding
This construction will cost about $2 million to complete. Funding is coming from a federal grant and matching state gas tax funds.
For More Information
ODOT is using a variety of methods to share information about the project: mailings, open houses, presentations to neighborhood and community organizations, press releases and social media.
Visit the project Web page regularly for the latest information.
Susan Hanson, ODOT Community Affairs 503‐731‐3490.
Email Susan to sign up to receive email updates about the project.