The $11.5 million construction contract was awarded to Kerr Contractors Oregon, LLC in April 2015. Work began in June 2015 and is scheduled to be completed in Spring 2016 after schedule delays. On-site work will begin the week of April 4th. It is anticipated that the project will be completed by Memorial Day weekend with the exception of unforeseen delays.
Work will include completion of the passing lanes between Kent and Shaniko, and paving between Grass Valley and Shaniko. Below is a map showing the location of the various types of work.
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- Repave 29 miles of U.S. 97 between Grass Valley (MP 27.1) and Shaniko (MP 56.7).
- Construct passing lanes between MP 43.8 and MP 45.4 (located approximately 3 miles north of Kent, OR).
- Replace substandard highway signs between Moro and Madras.
- Construct ADA compliant sidewalk ramps at two corners, and add truncated domes to other ramps in Grass Valley.
Project Information Paper Vicinity Map
Why is this project needed?
U.S. 97 is a critical part of the State’s transportation system and is a major north-south freight corridor that links California and Washington. Keeping highways in good condition and providing a safe, efficient transportation system that supports economic opportunity is a critical aspect of the mission for the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT).
The existing roadway is unraveling and coming apart. The last time this section of highway was paved was in 1999. The 2012 pavement rating for this section was poor. A chip seal was applied to this section of highway in 2005 to prolong the life of the roadway. The local maintenance district has placed numerous extended asphalt patches over the past few years.
The average daily traffic is 1900 vehicles with a truck percentage of 46 percent. Limited passing opportunities lead to lengthy following times that can result in drivers making passing maneuvers at high speeds and limited sight distances.
How does ODOT propose to solve these problems
ODOT plans to grind out the top portion of the pavement and replace it with 3-4" of dense hot mix asphalt concrete over the full width of the roadway. Centerline rumble strips and shoulder rumble strips, where the road width is sufficient, will be installed.
The additional 1.6 miles of passing lanes will allow vehicles to maintain free flow speeds, improve travel time reliability and increase overall roadway safety.
In Grass Valley, sidewalk ramps will be retrofitted with truncated domes for the visually impaired. In addition, two sidewalk ramps on North Street will be reconstructed to meet ADA standards.
Highway signs between Moro and Madras will be upgraded, where necessary, to meet current standards.
Traffic control during construction
Paving will be done during daylight hours. Traffic will be controlled by flaggers and a pilot car. Motorists can expect delays up to 20 minutes.
Timeline and Estimated Project Cost