New section of Highway 20 opens after years of work, problems - KPTV - FOX 12

New section of Highway 20 opens after years of work, problems

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This aerial photo shows the new section of road, looking west near Eddyville (Photo: ODOT) This aerial photo shows the new section of road, looking west near Eddyville (Photo: ODOT)
EDDYVILLE, OR (KPTV) -

It's been a bumpy ride, but a new section of U.S. Highway 20 between Corvallis and Newport is now open to traffic.

The new alignment officially opened at 5 a.m. Tuesday.

The 5.5-mile section of road replaces an older, winding section of highway near Eddyville that's been the scene of at least 15 fatal crashes since 1999.

Construction on the project began in 2006 but the contractor ran into problems with unstable hillsides in the area.

After years of unsuccessful attempts to mitigate landslide risk along the route, ODOT took control of the project in 2012.

ODOT says the new section of highway is straighter, has paved shoulders and miles of passing lanes to improve safety.

Though the roadway is now open to traffic during the day, overnight closures between Eddyville and Toledo will continue through the end of the month.

Drivers should also expect delays as crews finish up paving and striping throughout the day Tuesday.

For more information, check the project page here.

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