Uncertainty still looms over Chemawa work

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Construction along Chemawa Road North was set to be done by the end of October, but as of this week it still wasn’t clear when the work would be wrapped up for the winter. (File)

Construction along Chemawa Road North was set to be done by the end of October, but as of this week it still wasn’t clear when the work would be wrapped up for the winter. (File)

By CRAIG MURPHY
Of the Keizertimes

Monday was a bright, sunny day.

But Shane Ottosen knew such days were limited.

Ottosen, the project manager for the Oregon Department of Transportation’s Chemawa Road renovation, is scrambling to figure out what work can be completed this year and what will have to wait until next spring.

Originally, Ottosen’s plan was to have the entire project from River Road to Keizer Rapids Park done by now. However, the process of moving utilities took months longer than anticipated, throwing the entire timeline off.

“We’re trying to figure out options for buttoning up for winter,” Ottosen said on Monday. “We are certainly not going to get it all done. We may just button up what we have, then figure out our options for down the road. The rains are going to be coming.”

A key element of the project is putting in a traffic light for McNary High School at Chemawa and Celtic Way. One possibility raised has been closing access to the school on Chemawa and opening the school access at Sandy Drive.

Keizer Public Works Director Bill Lawyer, who met with Ottosen on Monday, indicated Tuesday afternoon he still wasn’t sure if that could work.


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