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US 97: Sand Creek Passing Lane Project
Project Information
This project is being funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
Funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009
The US 97 Sand Creek Passing Lane Project is located approximately 40 miles north of Klamath Falls, Oregon in Klamath County between mileposts 229 and 232.

Why this project is needed
US 97 is a critical part of the State’s transportation system and is classified as an Expressway.  The highway carries a high volume of freight and recreational traffic from the California to the Washington border.  It is also an important highway for local traffic.  Keeping roads in good condition and providing for safe travel are critical parts of the mission for the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT).

The mix of vehicles (freight, recreational and passenger cars) lends itself to large speed differentials.  This section of highway has limited passing opportunities due to the traffic type and volume.
A review of the crash history between mileposts 221 and 241 on US 97 revealed 64 crashes during the period of January 2005 through December 2007.  Of the 64 crashes, 60 of them (94%) would benefit from the construction of the passing lanes.  There was on fatality crash during that period that resulted in five deaths.  Of the 64 crashes, 46 (72%) occurred during icy or snowy road conditions.Construction of the passing lanes in August 2009.
There are other passing lanes at mileposts 220 and 245, which is a travel distance of approximately 25 minutes.  Like most other passing lanes along US 97, these are approximately a mile in length.  This does not provide large trucks enough time to pass other trucks or slow moving vehicles.

What is planned
To address these problems in this section of US 97, the following actions are planned:
  • Construct a two mile passing lane for both northbound and southbound traffic.
  • Install passing lane related signs.
Printable version of this information paper                                            Vicinity Map 

Project Timeline

 Design Winter/Spring 2009 
 Contract Bid Let  May 2009
 Construction  Summer 2009
 Completion Fall 2009

Project Cost
Approximately $8.2 million

ODOT Contacts
Office Phone
Tom Feeley
Construction Project Manager
Michael Schaaf
Project Leader
Butch Hansen
Area Manager