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Preparations for closure underway, two weeks left before road closes for safety improvements

PMG PHOTO: ANNA DEL SAVIO - Safety improvements on Cornelius Pass mean the road will close to traffic from early July to early October. While the detour route for cars will go along Newberry Road, trucks will have to travel further down Highway 30 to get on Highway 26.The Cornelius Pass Road closure is anticipated to begin the week of July 8. While a mid-July closure has been planned for months, the exact closure date wasn't set until recently.

"The contractor needs to complete a couple of tasks before we'll allow them to close the road," Multnomah County spokesperson Mike Pullen said. The closure will begin July 8 unless the contractor, Wildish Standard Paving, is not able to complete those tasks in time. The key requirement is installing the temporary traffic light at Highway 30 and NW Newberry Road.

Installation for the traffic light will begin this week, Pullen said.

During construction, the traffic light at Highway 30 and Cornelius Pass will stay in operation, though timing on the traffic light can be adjusted. Construction workers and residents of Cornelius Pass between Highway 30 and 8th Avenue, where the hard road closure begins, will still need to access Cornelius Pass.

The closure, which has been in the works for years, will address some of the safety issues that have made Cornelius Pass the site of frequent accidents.

The anticipated reopening date is September 21, but may change once construction is underway. With cash incentives for completing the project by September 21, and financial penalties for completing the project after that date, the contractor has additional motivation to shorten the road closure.

Cars and pickup trucks will detour to Newberry Road, but large trucks will have to travel further down Highway 30 to get on Highway 26. Trucks carrying hazardous material will have an even longer detour. COURTESY PHOTO: MULTNOMAH COUNTY TRANSPORTATION - The detour for cars will take drivers down Highway 30 to NW Newberry Road. A temporary traffic signal will be installed, primarily for afternoon rush-hour traffic taking a left from Newberry onto Highway 30.

Commuters to Hillsboro will see delays. With the increase of traffic on Highway 30, commuters who travel to Portland along the road may see longer travel times.

Columbia County Rider, which provides bus service to Portland Community College's Rock Creek campus, will detour to Rocky Point Road. According to a Facebook post from CC Rider, riders should expect a 10 to 15 minute delay.

During the Corn Pass construction, closures on I-405 will also impact commuters. In addition to weekend and night closures, the ramp from Highway 30 to 1-405 south will close all hours from the night of July 19 to the morning of July 29.

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