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OBEC’s Rhododendron Drive project in Florence opens to traffic

OBEC’s Rhododendron Drive project opened in Florence, Oregon, with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. Attendees walked the length of the project and then listened to the mayor, city manager, and head of the Greentrees Village, a 55-and-older manufactured and modular home community, spoke about the project.

The existing Rhododendron Drive was a narrow two-lane roadway that was unsafe for pedestrians and bicyclists, and the roadway was lined with native rhododendrons. An original design concept called for a multiuse path along the east side of the roadway to accommodate bikes and pedestrians. After listening to the community and ODOT, OBEC changed the design to a widening of the existing roadway shoulders to reduce impacts to right-of-way and vegetation, including the rhododendrons. The widened shoulders further reduced project impacts by using pervious pavement to eliminate the need to manage and treat stormwater runoff.

In his speech, the Greentrees Village representative praised the City, ODOT, and local police for working with the community to build a project the community could support. The City Manager also praised OBEC for the design and alternatives analysis process and praised OBEC engineer Stan Petroff.