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Chemeketa: Chemeketa Parkway, Phase 2: Introducing Highway 215

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Hi everyone-

RL reared its head up a good bit before I could get into my planned conclusion of this construction arc, but with a little bit of a respite, I'm finally back with the concluding arc of this "spurt" of updates--the Chemeketa Parkway project.


Project Map


The Chemeketa Parkway Project will complete a "quarter-loop" freeway connection, between downtown Chemeketa's Division/Commerce Street couplet and Highway 15 (the West Oregon Freeway) through North Chemeketa, partially using the existing alignment of Highway 219.

Phase 1 of the project updated the 2-lane stretch of Highway 219 between 28th Avenue NE and 52nd Avenue NE (Highway 221) to an access-controlled freeway with grade-separated interchanges at 39th and 52nd Avenues and a RIRO (right-in/right-out) at 33rd Avenue.

Phase 2 of the project will build a new stretch of freeway parallel to existing Highway 219 between 52nd and 71st Avenues with 3 travel lanes in each direction, as well as a new interchange at 71st Avenue, which will be re-aligned to connect into the existing northern segment of Highway 219 that heads toward Windsor. As the alignment of the Chemeketa Parkway from this point diverges from the initial routing of Highway 219, ORDOT has decided to truncate Highway 219 to the new interchange at 71st Avenue and assign Highway 215 to the Chemeketa Parkway and Division/Commerce Streets between Highway 36 and Highway 15.

This is an existing stretch of 71st Avenue NE (facing north). The construction work there marks the alignment of the new Chemeketa Parkway.


Here is the existing curve on Highway 219 just south of its intersection with 71st Avenue (facing north). The work on the left side of the screen represents ground clearing in preparation for the Chemeketa Parkway (now Highway 215). The work on the right is for a frontage road that will, at least for the time being, connect 59th Avenue with 71st Avenue.


More work underway at 71st and the future parkway (facing north). The radio station there will be forced to relocate in order to make way for the new Single-Point Urban Interchange (SPUI).



71st Avenue has been closed off for construction purposes (facing north). It will be re-aligned to the west of the interchange, where it will connect into the existing northern segment of Highway 219, and the segment to the east will be widened and partially elevated. Motorists can use 52nd Avenue, 59th Avenue, or Progress Street/Bushnell Road to Withnall Way in order to access Highway 219 in the interim.


More preparations for the new interchange (facing east).


The elevated structure for the actual interchange itself has been constructed (facing north) and awaits further connections.



East of the new SPUI, 71st has been widened to 4 lanes and placed on an embankment, eliminating the at-grade rail crossing (facing north).


Grading west of the interchange on the new connection to Highway 219 (facing north).


Paving on the new stretch of the parkway (facing north).


Here, you can see the existing alignment of Highway 219 near its intersection with 59th Avenue NE and the end of Phase 1 work, with the right-of-way cleared for Highway 215 (facing north).


New and old collide, just south of the old 71st Avenue intersection (facing north).


A stretch of the new "jog" on Highway 215 (facing north).


This is where the new Highway 215 alignment will connect with the existing stretch of the Chemeketa Parkway/Highway 219, just south of the 52nd Avenue/Highway 221 interchange (facing north).


The ramps on the north side of the 52nd Avenue interchange have been closed, and existing Highway 219 has been detoured slightly to ease the construction of the connection (facing north).


The construction alignment at 59th Avenue (facing north). You can see that the new alignment is progressing quite nicely at this point.


Getting ready to connect the new alignment in (facing north).


The new alignment being connected into the 52nd Avenue interchange (facing north).


The old stretch of Highway 219 will be dead-ended here for the time being (facing north).


This is the new 71st interchange, finally open to traffic (facing north).


This is just north of the new 71st Avenue interchange (facing north). The highway currently just dead-ends at a barrier, but will be extended north (and eventually east) in the next two updates.


An overview of the big curve on the new Highway 215 alignment, with the frontage road connecting 59th up (facing north).


That does it for this installment of Tarkusian Cities. We'll be looking at Phases 3 and 4 of the Chemeketa Parkway/Highway 215 in the next two updates, respectively. And if you looked at the map in detail, you should have some idea of what this will entail . . . lots of new interchanges to look forward to.

Hope you enjoyed it!


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