HASSO HERING

A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley

Testing a wider, nicer Riverside Drive

Written May 10th, 2018 by Hasso Hering

Nice paving job — and wide too! That was my first impression Wednesday of the newly rebuilt segment of Riverside Drive just outside of Albany. On the bike, the wider road really makes a difference, even before the lane markings are installed.

To refresh your memory, Knife River has a $1.9 million contract from Linn County to widen and repave Riverside Drive from Oakville Road to Meadow Road, a distance of 2.4 miles. The contract has a completion date of June 22, and judging by the progress so far they’ll make it.

As part of the job, a sharp curve in the road has been made rounder. Should prevent some crashes, I would guess.

The newly paved section has two 12-foot travel lanes and 4-foot paved shoulders. It’ll make the new segment less risky for drivers and bike riders alike.

The county eventually intends to widen Riverside south all the way to Highway 34, connecting to the off-highway bikeway there. That will provide a safer bike route from Albany to Corvallis on the Linn County side. Benton County is still trying to figure out how or when it might be able to build an Albany-Corvallis bike route, off Highway 20, on its side. (hh)

The new and wider pavement on Riverside near Oakville Road on Wednesday.



3 responses to “Testing a wider, nicer Riverside Drive”

  1. J. Jacobson says:

    Taxpayers spent nearly a million-dollars per mile so a few bicyclists can relax whilst pedaling? Was this spending part of the current administration’s infrastructure improvement plan?

    With this kind of priortization, one can easily imagine a time when fiscal chickens will come home to roost.

    • centrist says:

      Zounds and odds bodkins…..
      The project widened the paving to allow a shoulder. That shoulder can be used as a bike path. It can also be used by the locals to do mundane things like walking to a neighbor or checking the mailbox without stepping into the traffic lane.
      If this road/street were inside a city, the speed limit would likely be 25 ( lots of driveways, no shoulders, no walkways). Problem is that it’s a nifty connector from 34 to West Albany and needs improvement.

  2. BillH says:

    Nice wide road. The only issue I see is the great big ditches on the side, A cyclist avoiding a vehicle intruding into the bike lane might have an interesting time.

 

 
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