Expect delays as ODOT works on I-5 south to I-84 east interchange

Repair work on ramps between I-5 and I-84 will begin Sunday, July 8, 2018. KATU photo

PORTLAND, Ore. – Commuters will see extensive delays along Interstate 5 in Portland as Oregon Dept. of Transportation starts a repair project at the I-84 interchange.

Over the summer, ODOT will close three of the ramps that connect I-5 with I-84. Crews will replace concrete and steel, plus repair guardrails. The work requires around-the-clock closures, and ODOT will tackle one ramp at a time. Each closure could last for up to two weeks.

First is the I-5 southbound ramp to I-84 east, which will close Sunday night at 10 p.m.

The ramp is expected to reopen July 23.

ODOT officials said they think I-5 southbound traffic could back up all the way to the Interstate Bridge.

During the closure, ODOT suggests drivers avoid this area of I-5 altogether, and take Interstate 205 to access I-84, if possible. Commuters can also loop through downtown Portland on Interstate 405 southbound, across the Fremont Bridge, come back northbound on I-5 across the Marquam Bridge, and then merge onto I-84 eastbound.

However, this route will likely become extremely congested. Travelers should also plan for heavy traffic on all surface streets along I-5 and I-84 near the work zone, and on I-84 eastbound onramps.

Drivers need to plan ahead, especially during their commutes. They suggest taking public transportation, carpooling, or working at home if you can.

“This has to be a full closure - it's the only way that we can get this done properly. This is really all about making sure we keep our transportation systems in good working order,” said ODOT spokesperson Don Hamilton.

ODOT anticipates the first couple of days of this closure to be the worst as it typically takes drivers a few days to figure out a different route.

The delays are expected to be 24-7.

To help drivers through the delays, ODOT curated a Spotify playlist filled with traffic jams.

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