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Cedar Mill News
Volume 6, Issue 9


September 2008

Highway 217 widening217 widening project back on track

After a nearly two-year delay, the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) is back on track to widen and modernize the northbound section of Highway 217 between Tualatin Valley Highway and Highway 26 (Sunset Highway). The project, which was originally slated to begin construction during the summer of 2007, originally went out to bid in early 2007, but none of the responding construction companies was able to meet the department’s budget for the project.

The project is essentially identical to the one that we described in March 2007, but this time the overall project budget is $28 million, down from the originally reported $34 million. It’s unclear how these savings were achieved. The new project will go out to bid in October.

Construction is slated to begin winter/spring 2009 and will take approximately 2 years. It will include the following elements: adding a third northbound lane on OR 217 from the TV Highway on-ramp to Sunset Highway; building retaining walls along OR 217; improving drainage on the highway; paving and striping the project area and all the OR 217/U.S. 26 interchange ramps; lengthening the Wilshire Street overpass to accommodate the wider highway; and improving visibility and safety on the Wilshire Street off-ramp in the OR 217/U.S. 26 interchange.

Once complete, motorists will have three northbound through lanes between TV Highway and the Sunset Highway. This will help eliminate the weaving that occurs between TV Highway and Walker Road as motorists are simultaneously entering and exiting the highway. In addition, sight distance and safety will be improved when traveling between OR 217 northbound and U.S. 26 eastbound.

Traffic Impacts

The high traffic volumes on OR 217 require that all lanes be open without restrictions during daytime hours. Closing the lanes during the day would create backups and serious safety concerns. As a result, much of the work will take place during nighttime hours when traffic volumes are lower. Motorists will experience single and double lane closures on the highway during the overnight work hours. As much as possible, daytime work will take place outside the travel lanes behind barriers.

ODOT spokesperson Lili Gordon says, “We will hold a construction open house once a contractor is on board to let folks know more specifics about what to expect during construction.” Stay tuned.




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Published monthly by Cedar Mill Advertising & Design
Publisher/Editor:Virginia Bruce
12110 NW West Rd
Portland, OR 97229