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Location: Colorado Avenue Dam on the Deschutes River, between Mckay and Miller's Landing Parks.
Total Budget: $9,681,985
Bond - $7,721,025
Partnership - $1,133,737 (Bend Paddle Trail Alliance)
Facility Reserve Fund - $ 827,223
Estimated Completion: Fall 2015* (* Park and trail construction on either side of the river will continue into summer 2016).
Overview: The Colorado Dam Safe Passage project will renovate the Colorado Dam to create three channels downstream--a safe channel for paddle boarders and other floaters, a whitewater play area and a natural river area to enhance habitat. The project also includes replacing the existing bike/pedestrian bridge that connects McKay Park to Miller’s Landing Park. The project is primarily funded by the 2012 General Obligation Bond Measure and has a budget of $9,681,985. The Bend Paddle Trail Alliance is a sponsor on this project and has committed $1,133,737 in fundraising towards the project. Please visit www.bendpaddletrailalliance.org for more information on how to support their efforts. The project is anticipated to be completed by fall of 2015.
McKay Park, located directly adjacent to the Safe Passage project, will be upgraded to support activities associated with the project including accessible trails, a larger beach, restrooms, changing rooms, an observation deck and new pavilion. Construction of McKay Park will be completed in late 2016.
Additionally, the District is designing a pedestrian undercrossing under Colorado Avenue to improve accessibility along the Deschutes River Trail, adjacent to the Safe Passage project. Construction of the undercrossing is anticipated to begin in late 2015.
Current Project Update:
Construction of stage one is complete and the river flow is now directed to river right. Stage two is initiated and includes construction of the safe passage and whitewater channels, deconstruction of the existing pedestrian bridge and construction of pedestrian bridge foundations. Please continue to observe closures and detours while traveling in and around the project area. Closures and detours will be in place around the area until 2016.
Colorado Undercrossing and DRT Trail Extensions: The revised project schedule targets an October through November 2015 closure window to allow sufficient time to order materials, complete design and coordinate with utilities and stakeholders. Coordination with City staff on the Colorado Lift Station Project continues, as both teams prefer to construct the two projects within the same closure window. Design continues on the undercrossing, including identifying materials to build the walls and support the slopes. 90% design is expected in mid-March. Land use permitting will begin this spring.
For all Colorado Dam Safe Passage past updates, click here.
Please be aware that there will be mandatory take-out and portage around the dam for all river users until all in-water work is complete in fall 2015. The construction area expands beyond the Colorado Dam and will affect access to the following locations with both short and long term closures: Colorado Avenue, Miller’s Landing Park, Deschutes River, Deschutes River Trail on both east and west sides, McKay Park, Colorado Dam footbridge, Shevlin Hixon Road and private properties in the north end of the Old Mill District. In addition, the City of Bend is constructing new sewer infrastructure in the vicinity so additional closures by the City should be expected.
BPRD appreciates the community’s patience during the project.
Background: River floating began in earnest in Bend when Farewell Bend Park opened access to the calm moving portion of the Deschutes River above the Colorado Street Dam in 2005. Since then, there have been several accidents and one death at the dam. Once the safe passage channel is complete, river users will be able to travel through the dam without having to portage.
Additional Information: For more information on Colorado Dam Safe Passage, contact Chelsea Schneider, Project Manager at (541) 706-6155 or email@example.com or Brian Hudspeth, BPRD Construction Manager, at (541) 706-6137 or firstname.lastname@example.org.