$3 million road improvement project is a highlight of Tualatin Moving Forward program
Hundreds of Tualatin residents turned out on Saturday, Nov. 20, to celebrate the long-awaited completion of the Garden Corner Curves road improvement project in the Ibach neighborhood.
The $3 million project brought a new and improved roadway to the sharp S-curve that sees S.W. 105th Avenue transition to S.W. 108th Avenue just north of Ibach Street. In addition, the project added a paved pedestrian and bike path to the curves, along with a new culvert and fish passage over Hedges Creek, which passes under 105th just north of where the curves begin.
This corridor is heavily used by local residents, with around 4,000 vehicle trips per day being the norm. Now, cyclists and pedestrians will be able to safely share the route with vehicles and will take advantage of a pair of rapid flashing beacons that mark protected crosswalks on either end of the curves.
“It’s amazing that we all saw the pictures many years ago, and it looks just like the pictures,” Mayor Frank Bubenik said. “None of us could envision it. They would go ‘There’s no way we can do this,’ and they did it. So, it’s very impressive what’s been done here and we’re super proud of it.”
The Garden Corner Curves is the single largest piece of the wider $20 million Tualatin Moving Forward bond measure approved by voters in 2018. To date, the bond has funded 15 completed projects, with a number of others still to come. But the Curves is almost certainly the most highly anticipated piece of the bond puzzle.
“We heard for years from the people in this neighborhood that they wanted these curves fixed,” Bubenik said. “Work on this project started well before 2018. It took five years of planning and two years of construction to get to where we are today.”
Bubenik also praised the work of former City Councilor Robert Kellogg, who was instrumental in seeing the project through to completion with his advocacy.
“He never gave up, before he was on council, while he was on council, even after he was on council, he tirelessly advocated for this project,” Bubenik said.
One of the biggest beneficiaries of the project, as well as its namesake, is the Garden Corner Nursery, located at the south end of the curves.
“Before the opening, it was kind of scary, folks would try to get past all the traffic,” said Garden Corner owner Jonn Karsseboom. “Now, this is a relaxing beautiful walk, it goes all the way down.