The initial steps of a project that aims for a considerable makeover at the Hayes Street intersection with Settlemier Avenue are underway.
During its Jan. 13 meeting, Woodburn City Council approved a $287,479 contract with Kittelson & Associates for engineering and design services at that intersection. Those services will map out the planned street improvements for the public right-of-way on W. Hayes Street between Settlemier Avenue and Cascade Drive, including "the evaluation and design of a fully signalized intersection" at Settlemier and Hayes, according to the project report.
However, the first hands-on work at the intersection is still over a year away.
"The design work for the W. Hayes Street Improvements Project will take approximately 6 to 9 months, followed by a formal bidding process, which could take a couple of months, culminated by the city council contract award," Woodburn Public Works Projects & Engineering Director Eric Liljequist said. "After the contract award there is a period of a few weeks needed to obtain signed contracts, bonding and required submittals.
"Therefore, actual project construction will likely not commence until near the spring of 2021 at the earliest."
Liljequist advised that other peripheral factors can affect actual construction dates as well as the scope of the project.
"As with all design-bid-build projects, this timetable is subject to change based on various factors, including the bidding climate and direction from city council," he said. "The intersection…will be evaluated in depth for different traffic configurations. One of these configurations is a fully signalized intersection."
At various meetings, including the Jan. 13 one, there has been some discussion and concerns expressed about the fate of the trees in the vicinity. That fate will also be determined through the evaluation and design process.
"We will look at all possible options to protect existing healthy trees within the project limits," Liljequist said. "With that being said, the trees at the aforementioned intersection may have to be removed depending on the optimal traffic configuration that is ultimately approved by city council as the preferred option.
"There are also other trees that may have to be removed due to their location in terms of the final street design configuration," he added. "But again, the city will do everything possible to protect existing healthy trees."
The director said he plans to update the council on design options either this spring or summer, depending on how they unfold.
The project may show some similarities to this year's realignment at Hardcastle Avenue and Front Street, a work that councilors and others praised as the intersection is now easier to negotiate, especially for commercial trucks, and has a smoother flow.
"The original intent of the new (Hayes-Settlemier) design was to realign the intersection to a perpendicular orientation, but this will depend on the final preferred intersection design configuration, which may or may not be perpendicular," Liljequist said.
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