ODOT’s federal funding request focuses on highways and “providing jobs immediately”

The (Epic) Sushi Ride
ODOT wants $2 million to improve
illumination on I-205 bike path.
(Photo © J. Maus)

The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) has released their official list of projects to be included in the federal economic stimulus bill that is expected to come together in mid-February

The list includes 46 projects throughout the state and a total stimulus funding request of just over $179 million. ODOT has separated the list into several project types, one of which is bicycle/pedestrian (others are modernization, preservation, and so on)

Out of the total $179 million in requests, four projects and $3.8 million (2.5% of the total amount) will go to bicycle/pedestrian specific projects
. Those projects are (with descriptions from ODOT);

Download the entire list here (PDF, 86KB)

The list also includes:

For perspective to the $3.8 million total being spent on “bicycle/pedestrian” projects, $8 million is being requested to build 2 miles of passing lane on Highway 97 in Klamath County to “address safety and add capacity”.

According to ODOT, work on these projects is slated to begin this summer, thereby “generating immediate living wage jobs for Oregonians.”

ODOT’s Deputy Director for Highways, Doug Tindall, distributed the list to stakeholders via email and has forwarded the list to the Federal Highway Administration. In that email, he wrote about the selection process:

“I recognize that selection of projects through Salem, with little public input is not our usual or preferred course of action… we have taken this approach on this list only, and we have done so because of the employment crisis facing Oregon today. The bottom line is that we need to get Oregonians to work.”

Sheila Lyons, ODOT’s bike and pedestrian coordinator, is in meetings all day today and could not be reached for comment.

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