Superblock project back on track following several schedule setbacks
Progress continues on the Superblock, with crews pivoting as needed to manage the occasional glitch. In July, an unmarked stormwater connection was discovered at the SE Mt. Scott Creek crossing area. Water Environmental Services is requiring the City to evaluate the water quality and while supplies have been ordered for this work, it could take some time to receive them. If materials continue to be delayed, there may be additional postponements in street improvements throughout the project. Should this occur, the City may move forward with paving in a phased approach on the remainder of the roadway.
A setback on SE 132nd has also impacted some progress along the stretch of roadway near the SE Ridgecrest intersection, although things are getting back on track. A power pole transfer needed to be completed by Century Link before final curb and sidewalk installation can proceed. The City is actively making efforts to coordinate with the telecommunication company to keep this work on track and will take additional steps, as necessary, to ensure the associated cables and lines are removed. As of current, this work is projected to be completed by end of the month, with PGE able to remove the remaining power pole that had been in the way of paving efforts.
Despite these hiccups, the south end of SE King Rd. saw sidewalk installed from SE Regina to SE Mt. Gate. PGE also successfully removed a lighting pole that needed to be taken down in that area, making way for additional sidewalk and curb installation efforts to begin. With respect to SE King Rd. north, plans are being shored up, so that the preparatory work for Phase III of the project can commence.
The City’s Superblock project is moving forward following several delays that temporarily curtailed initial timelines. While work had been slated to be completed in May 2021, several events deterred this goal. Reasons included additional power pole removal required on SE 132nd, extraction of an aerial communication line and streetlight on King Rd., and an unexpected need for a revised stormwater system design. Below, you will find all the details about how things are going:
- Work on SE King Rd. was specifically delayed following the discovery in April of an unknown buried stormwater outfall system that was flowing into Mount Scott Creek. The old system was located under new roadbed and sidewalk near the Creek and had to be replaced before the project could proceed. Replacement of the old system involved new piping and the creation of a new design which had to be approved by Water Environmental Services before construction could occur. This process alone took approximately a month and a half to complete.
- Additionally, PGE was unable to complete the removal of an existing streetlight on King Road in March, as originally planned. This work had to be postponed and instead occurred toward the end of May. As a result, it wasn’t until early June that PGE’s next project, the removal of an aerial communications line, could then be carried out. Both situations created significant delays or stoppage of construction along King Rd.
- On SE 132nd, a power pole relocation effort was slated to begin in January, however, designs for the work needed to be revamped by PGE which led to an unexpected delay. Inclement weather and other disruptions beyond City control involving third party communication providers further postponed the schedule. All work ultimately commenced in April, with outcomes now anticipated to be completed in July or early August.
Despite these setbacks, all significant issues impacting the project’s construction schedule have been resolved and are expected to gain more traction. Thankfully, the Contractor is back onsite fulltime once again and it is expected that all work on SE King Rd. will be completed the week of July 5th, with work on SE Ridgecrest Rd. being completed in a similar time frame.
Once finished, the Superblock project will create contiguous sidewalks and crosswalk safety improvements linking sections of Ridgecrest and 132nd and King Road and 147th. The project aims to increase the safety of both pedestrians and motorists and will provide more opportunities for everyone to enjoy a stroll around the area. The City is committed to keeping the community updated with more information as it becomes available, so be sure to check back here or follow the City on Facebook to stay in the loop!
If you have any questions or concerns about this project, please feel free to contact the City Project Manager, Edward Hodges, PE at (503) 684-3478, and also Chris Randall, City of Happy Valley Public Works Director, at (503) 783-3842.
City Council officially kicked off the Superblock project’s phase II efforts. The project continues work that will widen traffic lanes and create new curbs and sidewalks. When completed, the Superblock will allow for safer transportation for both motorists and those traversing the area by foot or other mobility devices.
The map shows the scope of the superblock project
The superblock project will create a walkable area within Happy Valley. The project aims to increase safety for both pedestrians and motorists and provide more recreational opportunities for those wanting to explore the community. Construction of the entire plan will occur over the course of several years.
The endeavor will offer contiguous sidewalks that link sections of Ridgecrest and 132nd and King Road and 147th. Purpose of this project is to increase safety of both pedestrians and motorists and provide more opportunities for everyone to enjoy a stroll around the area.
The superblock will allow for better traffic flow and connectivity between the sections of land that currently have gaps, allowing for increased usability of the space. This is of paramount importance to the City’s youth, elderly and those with disabilities. Being able to safely traverse the area not only promotes healthy recreational activity by way of exercise, but it also helps boost cross-visibility between those on foot and those using the road. Residents of the City have voiced wanting a project like this to come to fruition for some time. City Council has made this a priority and has assured its inclusion in the master plan. Council has also recommended the project be completed as soon as possible, so staff are working diligently to make sure all preparations are taken care of. The City continues to be excited about the superblock project as it will provide more opportunities for residents and visitors to enjoy Happy Valley. If you have any questions or concerns about this project, please contact Public Works Director, Chris Randall at 503-783-3800.