|Hwy. 26 safety corridor expected to be decommissioned this fall posted on 07/01/2020|
A safety corridor on Hwy. 26 between milepost 25.2 and 57.45
is expected to be decommissioned by the Oregon Department of Transportation
(ODOT) this fall, although an exact timeline is still unknown, according to Don
Hamilton, ODOT Region 1 Public Information Officer. The corridor was created in
1996 as a tool to help reduce crashes while long-term solutions are being
“Safety corridors are not intended to be permanent,”
Hamilton said. “This one was a fairly lengthy one.”
As part of the decommissioning, signs that read “Safety
Corridor” will be taken down and traffic fines will no longer be doubled.
Hamilton noted that the numbers reflect the success of the
corridor and the improvements that have taken place, with 59 fatal/severe
injury crashes occurring in the corridor between 1991-96, but dropping to 25
between 2013-18, a decrease of 58 percent.
ODOT has designated 21 different corridors in the state, and
after the stretch on Hwy. 26 is decommissioned, just four will remain. Hamilton
noted that ODOT continues to monitor what happens in the corridors after they
“We are also watching those former corridor areas very
carefully,” he said. “That's a critical part of this, we will continue to
evaluate the safety and prioritize improvements in this area.”
According to ODOT, $65 million has been invested into
improvements on 41.3 miles of Hwy. 26 since 2008, including variable message
signage, median strips and more. Another $4.4 million is expected to be spent
on more improvements in the near future. ODOT is also expected to continue to
fund law enforcement overtime in the area through safety grants.
ODOT also reported that out of the people involved in the
fatal/severe injury crashes on Hwy. 26, more than half involved local
A safety corridor on Hwy. 26 between Gresham and Sandy had
previously been decommissioned in 2006.
For more information, visit
By Garth Guibord/MT