▶️ Newport Avenue corridor improvements causing significant detours, delays

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Detours, delays and congestion are common along Newport Avenue as the city works to improve one of Bend’s busiest roads.

Central Oregon Daily News spoke to engineers, business owners and motorists trying to navigate through the construction zone.

The Newport Avenue corridor improvements are, first and foremost, storm water drain improvements.

The road, sidewalks and cross walks are being improved as part of the overall upgrade.

“While we are here and doing the stormwater improvements, we are going to come back and build Newport Corridor to today’s standards compared to what it is now,” said Ryan Oster, City of Bend Engineering Director. “There’s stretches of missing sidewalk and unsafe pedestrian crossings that we are going to take advantage of this opportunity to make this corridor safe for all modes of travel.”

Detours abound, sending motorists north toward Portland Avenue, west to NW Crossing and south to NW Galveston.

“Boy, I can’t wait for the road construction to finish. It seems like they keep going and keep tearing it up,” said Travis Reid. “They are doing a good job of getting us in and out but it sure is a pain.”

Last year, construction of a roundabout at 9th and Newport snarled traffic in that area for months. 

Now, the stretch of Newport Avenue from Juniper to NW College Way is limited to one-way westbound traffic and that has put a dent in business activity at the Ace Hardware Store on Newport.

“It’s affected us a bit. It slowed down a little when it started,” said Matt Bengs, Ace Hardware Operations Manager. “We understand the needs of what the city is doing and they have been pretty responsive when we do have any issues we report to them.”

A dog bone connecting 11th and 12th Street in front of the Newport Avenue Market will be one of the biggest changes to traffic flow. 

“It’s an elongated roundabout that connects in the middle. We will install some safe sidewalks. it will slow traffic down and allow better interaction for all modes of traffic,” Oster said. “We are also going to formalize some of the parking spots on streets. Right now you hop a curb and park on gravel. We will put in some new trees and plants, kind of urbanize the area a little bit.”

Motorists should expect increased traffic on the detour routes.

Some detours will be designated one way to reduce traffic volumes.

Watch for temporary stop signs and flaggers controlling traffic.

The project is scheduled for completion by the end of this year.

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