Road News January 2024

damaged sidewalk

Preparation for Cornell Road sidewalk repair underway

Design for repair of sidewalks damaged by growth of street trees on Cornell Road is underway by Washington County Department of Land Use and Transportation.

The County will replace more than 3,200 square feet of sidewalk on Cornell Road from Saltzman Road to Dale Avenue. Construction is expected to begin later this year.

damaged sidewalk

This portion of Cornell Road was improved as part of a County project in 2007. The street trees that were planted are now too big for the tree wells and have damaged tree grates and the surrounding sidewalk. Since 2007, the County updated its approved street tree list with species suitable for roadside environments.

Trees along Cornell Road will be replaced with a species that will not outgrow the tree wells. The original tree grates were custom-built and cannot be replaced. Instead, the soil will be covered with mulch and made level with the sidewalk. The mulch will be replaced as needed.

sidewalk repair map

The County began reviewing the Cornell Road sidewalks in spring 2023. The project scope is extensive, and the timeline was extended into summer 2024. A more complete timeline will be available once design is complete, and a contractor has been hired. Periodic sidewalks closures will happen during construction. Access to adjacent properties will be maintained. Traffic impacts are not expected.

Cost is estimated to at about $200,000. See Cornell Road Sidewalk Repair for updates.

Walker Road project updates

Washington County is widening Walker Road between Schendel Avenue and Butner Road to five lanes, two travel lanes in each direction and a center turn lane, with continuous bicycle and pedestrian facilities. A newsletter for the project was published in December and has detailed information on current and recently completed work, what’s coming up, and closure and detour information. 150th Avenue will be closed at Walker Road Dec. 26-Feb. 9 for city of Beaverton waterline installation. Detour to Meadow Drive and Pioneer Road. The project page has more information.

Tolling for Washington County freeways?

ODOT, Metro, and officials from throughout Washington and Multnomah Counties have studied tolling on U.S. 26 and Highway 217 as part of the Westside Multimodal Improvement Study. The Steering Committee issued a memorandum in late November that included “recommendations for next steps to pair tolling with strategic investments…”

The Study “Problem Statement” includes, “Travel conditions in the corridor are difficult due to traffic congestion and are expected to worsen as the corridor adds new housing and jobs. Despite a brief decrease due to the pandemic, trends are showing increased driving trips and freight travel. At the same time, there has been a decline in transit use. Active transportation networks are dispersed and incomplete.”

An article in the Business Tribune has more details.

One likely result of tolling would be to divert traffic to surface streets. Depending on how tolls are charged, it might also impact low-income commuters more.