Pulled this off the Willamette River Bridge site and it’s worth passing on to remind folks to be careful, courteous and safe out on the paths, especially with all of the construction going on.
Speaking of construction, the Fern Ridge path section near the fairgrounds has opened up- it’s nice! Would post a photo if I actually had any time to take and upload one =). They have moved the construction farther west now and are working near Chambers and the Blue Heron Bridge. Last night when I passed by they were done for the night and the fencing was down and people were going around the construction. I think that shows two things that need to be improved: 1) People need to obey signs and barriers, not doing so can not only be dangerous but also cause the project to take longer. 2) They really need to mark GOOD alternative routes for people. I don’t think they’ve done that very well on this project- there are alternatives but they don’t guide cyclists through them (like they would car drivers). They really need to place signs telling cyclists where to go for the alternative route, not just “Path Closed- Use 17th”.
Anyway, here is the information from ODOT regarding the I-5/Willamette River Bridge work:
Last week we received comments about safety on the path in the area just north of Knickerbocker Bridge where paths from all directions merge into one very busy intersection. If you frequently use the paths near the Willamette River Bridge project in the Whilamut Natural Area you are familiar with this area. I encourage you to use caution at all times and follow the signs and flaggers.
Good news is this intersection is temporary during the duration of the project. Currently, now it balances safety and ongoing mobility for path users and construction traffic. Land use regulations and discussions with key stakeholders were also considered when this configuration was created.
I encourage you to slow down and observe path traffic in this area so you minimize risk to yourself and other path users. We have recently moved construction fencing and added signage to increase visibility and awareness of this key intersection. Please be alert through the area and stay safe.
On another note, users of the Canoe Canal Path as it passes under I-5 should watch for concrete water dripping from overhead. The bridge deck was poured on Thursday, Aug. 12, and the dripping will continue for the next two weeks as the new deck dries.
With the heatwave this weekend, stay safe!