ODOT plans Odell Highway realignment

Erroneous information on the first advertisement for Wednesday’s Oregon Department of Transportation open house raised safety concern with some Hood River citizens.

The flier mistakenly stated that the meeting from 3 to 7 p.m. at the Hood River Adult Center, 2010 Sterling Place, would center on a project to realign Highway 35.

However, Kevin Bracey, ODOT project leader, corrected that information to read that ODOT was seeking to reconstruct Hood River Highway 281 — also known as Dee Highway — where it intersects with the Odell Highway. The intersection in question is the hairpin turn with a steep incline just south of Tucker Bridge.

The new approach would realign the south leg of the Hood River Highway to bring it into the intersection at a right angle that better matches the existing traffic pattern. When the project is complete, the Odell Highway will become the through movement and the south approach on Hood River Highway will be controlled by a stop sign.

Bracey said ODOT wants the $300,0000 project to lower the accident rate at the intersection where 13 incidents have been reported between 1996-2000, the majority of which were rear-end collisions. The work is expected to begin in the late fall of 2004 or 2005 and be completed by the following year.

The Statewide Transportation Improvement Program will also be presented at the Dec. 4 forum and list all state and federally funded ODOT projects slated for construction during the next four years.

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