Here is the latest update on the ODOT Highway project. Patience is a virtue.
Highway 101/6 Project Update – November 30, 2016
The last two rebar cages are being tied together this week, and the drilling and pouring of shafts will continue through the next few weeks so that the drillers can be packing up and demobilizing out of town by mid December. This will enable the forms for the first bridge support to be poured in the next couple of weeks, so that, despite several minor setbacks, we will be finding that the ODOT project’s critical baseline path, the bridge, is right on schedule.
While that most critical element is on track, there are other, less critical, but still important components of the project that are lagging. The replacement of the sidewalks on Pacific between 4th and 3rd and on the north side of Highway 6 or 1st Street are the most obvious of these. Almost all such concrete flatwork elements are being held up while the base bolt patterns for the new streetlights are undergoing review and approval in an ODOT submittal process. This has been held up for some time, however once these submittals are approved they are approved for the full project. It is hoped that the contractors’ proposed redesigns will be received by ODOT this week, and expeditiously turned around for implementation within the next two to three weeks, but until that submittal is approved, and the electrical work under the walks are completed, the concrete cannot be laid down. We are watching this closely and working with ODOT and the construction team where we can and will provide updates as we receive them.
That setback is compounded by the fact that the key storm drain line on the south bank of the Hoquarton ran into a large underground powerline, which was not buried as deep as anticipated. This has stymied the construction of all upslope drainlines since such lines have to be laid from the lowest point up to the highest collection points. Therefore, the project is held up on this aspect until TPUD redesigns the powerline to get around the drainline since the drain has to sustain a certain slope whereas the powerline can move up and down.
Aside from the delay problems, there have been additional minor irritations that the public has suffered, as demonstrated by the multiple complaints about the pothole that developed in the right lane of Pacific at its intersection with First. While ODOT has thrown in numerous bags of cold patch trying to smooth that over, apparently there is a sinkhole underneath as the patches keep subsiding. ODOT is investigating some cut-out options that can address that root problem and provide a lasting integrated surface.
There is hope for improvement, however. Once the electrical submittals are approved, the sidewalk work can launch on Pacific and clip along from block to block, since the submittals apply to all flatwork and do not need to be repeated. With the improved pedestrian accessibility on the north side of Second Street, the contractor has agreed to pull the barricades on the south side closer to the buildings for smoother walkability as well. Also, the bicycle/pedestrian path from Goodspeed Park to the Hoquarton will be released from its contractual hold that would not let it be built until next winter, and so the contractor may be working on that aspect sooner than originally anticipated. Lastly, once these shifting construction changes are resolved, the contractor will prepare a revised overall project schedule that we will get out to you as soon as possible.
As a final note, the exploratory work on the key manhole at the intersection of Stillwell and First is scheduled for early Thursday morning until noon and will cause some traffic rerouting down Ivy and Fir. This traffic impact will be followed shortly by longer-term sewer work that will be turning off of Cedar and heading east up First to eventually join with that manhole on Stillwell.
Tillamook Area Chamber of Commerce | 3705 Highway 101, Tillamook, OR 97141