A grant from one of the state’s newest transportation programs is making it possible for a new trail to be built alongside the Newberg-Dundee Bypass. For many, it will be a dream come true.
Earlier this year, ODOT awarded a $1.8 million grant to the Chehalem Park and Recreation District to begin construction on the new trail. The grant comes from the new ODOT-administered Oregon Community Paths Grant program, created by Keep Oregon Moving (HB 2017) legislation, and it includes a $780,000 match. It will become part of the expanding Chehalem Heritage Trails system and provides a much-needed multi-use community path.
Like the Newberg-Dundee Bypass road (OR 18), the trail will be built in three phases. Phase 1 of the trail will run from Industrial Parkway next to OR 219, beneath and parallel to the bypass near Wynooski Street, and across a new footbridge over Hess Creek. Eventually it will connect to Dundee. The district is partnering with the city of Newberg on the project.
“Our community has expressed a strong interest in expanding the Chehalem Heritage Trails system, and this money will enable us to move on a key portion of the trails masterplan: Phase 1 of the Newberg-Dundee Bypass Trail,” said Kat Ricker, public information director for the district. “The Chehalem Park and Recreation District is thrilled to be awarded this Community Paths Grant.”
Phase 1 of the 3.1 mile Newberg-Dundee Bypass road opened in January 2018 and connects OR 219 with OR 99W just west of Dundee. The bypass, along with a rebuilt Springbrook Road that connects OR 99W with OR 219 in east Newberg, allows thru traffic to “bypass” OR 99W in Newberg and Dundee. Phase 2 of the bypass road is in design but funding for construction has not yet been identified.
A project long in the making
The discussion of a bypass trail started over 10 years ago when ODOT began moving ahead with Phase 1 of the Newberg-Dundee Bypass. When the trail’s other phases are completed, it will eventually connect Newberg and Dundee with some of the region’s most attractive pedestrian and bicycle facilities. Multimodal and active transportation funding for paths like this is helping ODOT meet its Strategic Action Plan goals – to ensure Oregonians have options.
“With this new trail, our communities of Newberg and Dundee will be literally bridged, and people will have an option to travel along the same alignment as the bypass,” Ricker said. “This trail will enhance our communities for not only outdoor trails, recreation and fitness exercise, but also by contributing to day-to-day safety and transportation while strengthening opportunities for people to go to work, shop and do the things between Newberg and Dundee that are important to them.”