An Oregon Department of Transportation project to improve U.S. Highway 97 between Redmond and Bend will get underway this weekend, and the agency advised motorists to be aware of traffic pattern changes that will come with the task.
Beginning Sunday night, contractors working with ODOT will start the project to replace the rutted highway surface from Wickiup Avenue, on the southern outskirts of Redmond, to Bowery Lane, just north of Bend.
ODOT said it has determined that the severe rutting due to studded tire use required immediate attention, so last year the Oregon Transportation Commission approved the $5 million repair project.
Initial work will begin on the Yew Avenue bridge on Sunday. Next Monday, one ramp at a time on Deschutes Market/Tumalo Road exits will be closing for grinding and paving between 8 p.m. and 6 a.m. Tuesday.
Starting next Wednesday, grinding and paving will take place during nighttime hours, on the southbound stretch of the highway. Highway operations will begin as soon as 7 p.m. and end by 7 a.m. during the week.
Significant work on the project is expected to be completed by May 21, the agency said.