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Jefferson County, ODOT to permanently close Hwy. 97 access at Bear Drive east this week


MADRAS, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Last year, after extensive public outreach, Jefferson County and ODOT agreed to close SW Bear Drive and Eureka Lane at U.S. Highway 97. Both intersections have a history of serious and fatal crashes. Poor visibility and being near the end of a passing lane created extra safety concerns.

On Wednesday, crews will install a concrete barrier where Bear Drive east meets U.S. 97, closing the road, ODOT officials said Monday. Bear Drive west and Eureka Lane were both closed in 2021. 

These closures will require traffic to choose alternate routes using Ford, Falcon, or Dover lanes to enter or exit the highway. Crews recently finished paving at Ford and Falcon lanes to support their increased use.

Design teams are already working on plans for the new turn lanes at Dover Lane and the more permanent closures of Bear Drive and Eureka Lane. Crews will begin this construction work in 2023. Click here for more information on this project.

Credit: ODOT

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