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Monday, August 17, 2009

TriMet using stimulus to maintain reliable light rail service

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TriMet and the city of Portland, Ore., are using $1.6 million of federal stimulus funds to repair bricks in 20 intersections on Morrison and Yamhill streets in downtown Portland. As the backbone of Portland's light rail system, the Morrison and Yamhill corridors have experienced significant wear and tear and have not had major repairs in the 25 years since the tracks went in.


Crews begin work on Monday, August 17, starting at SW 2nd and Yamhill and SW 2nd and Morrison. They will work on Morrison and Yamhill in tandem throughout the project, which is expected to continue into October.

Construction details:

• Construction takes place Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.

• Occasional Saturday and evening work is likely.

• A swing shift crew - 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. - will be utilized from late August through mid-September for prep work.

• Each intersection will be done in two stages: Each stage must be prepared and repaired then allowed to cure before it is reopened to traffic. The two stages at SW 2nd will be interlaced with the stages at SW 3rd. Crews will move to SW 10th and 11th, followed by SW 1st, SW 4th and Broadway, and finally SW Park and SW 9th avenues.

• During construction, the auto lanes on Morrison and Yamhill will be closed; cross streets will be reduced to one lane through the intersection.

• Lane closures are expected to last eight to 10 days for each stage.

• Estimated completion date is October 9, although the schedule may be revised.

• No repairs will be done at 5th and 6th avenues, which were rebuilt as part of the Portland Mall project.


The contractor is Stacy and Witbeck/Kiewit Pacific, Inc. Subcontractors include C.O.A.T. Flagging, Schonert and Associates, Inc. and Raimore Construction, Inc. Raimore and C.O.A.T. Flagging are part of TriMet's Disadvantaged Business Enterprise program. Federal stimulus funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act have prevented 23 layoffs among the contractor and three subcontractors working on this project.


TriMet was awarded $53.3 million in federal stimulus funds to be used to fix failing infrastructure, make the transit system more robust and put Oregonians to work. Since May, TriMet has broken ground on or completed eight of the 31 approved projects. TriMet's stimulus projects are projected to fund about 740 direct jobs and 1,100 indirect jobs.

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