ODOT seeks public input on HWY 97/Baker Road interchange development

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Members of the public will have another opportunity to weigh in on the future of transportation infrastructure investment and development in south Bend, and around the U.S. 97/Baker Road Interchange.

ODOT’s Project Delivery team in Bend will host two online events in November keying on the development of a management plan that will guide future development of the U.S. 97 corridor between Baker Road and Bend.

The first of these events is an Online Open House that will take place Nov. 1-14.

This is a self-directed virtual tour of the project, project maps and photos.

The second event is a live virtual public meeting that will take place on Wednesday, Nov. 3, starting at 6 p.m.

The agenda includes a presentation from the planning team, including the results of similar outreach activities last May and proposed solutions to issues identified in that process.

This is the second time ODOT has engaged in public discussions about the future of the interchange.

The last time was in May 2021 when ODOT hosted similar outreach events, and some of the results of that effort will be discussed this time around.

HISTORY

The U.S. 97/Baker Road interchange was constructed in the early 1990s, primarily to serve the sparsely populated rural lands south of Bend. Since that time, the City of Bend’s population nearly quadrupled, leading to heavier congestion, crashes, and land use conflicts.

With population growth in the area expected to continue, ODOT planners are preparing an Interchange Area Management Plan (IAMP) to evaluate how the existing U.S. 97/Baker Road interchange operates and to determine what measures are needed to keep it functioning well over the next 20 years.

Links to the online open house and virtual town hall meeting are posted on the project website at www.tinyurl.com/BakerRoadIAMP.

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