Phoenix, Ore. -- Transportation officials say the construction to install a storm water pipeline underneath Interstate 5 is necessary in completing the Fern Valley Interchange. The project is expected to be complete in 2016 and will be the first 'diamond interchange' in Oregon.
During the construction of the storm line, traffic is being diverted to a single lane of traffic in both directions. Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) officials say drivers should expect to see congestion and long lines during peak travel times. An alternate route using Highway 99 or North Phoenix Road is advised until the 25 day project is completed.
High water flows as a result increased impermeable surfaces means a larger drain is needed.
ODOT spokesperson, Gary Leaming pointed out nearby willow trees which are a sign that the area has increased water flows.
Leaming also said state regulations require projects like the Fern Valley Interchange to include storm water treatment ponds to catch excess water from the interstate and filter it before flowing into Bear Creek.