U.S. Route 20 in Oregon

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U.S. Highway 20

US 20 highlighted in red
Route information
Maintained by ODOT
Length451.25 mi[1] (726.22 km)
Existed1940–present
Major junctions
West end US 101 in Newport
Major intersections
East end US 20 / US 26 at the Idaho state line
Location
CountryUnited States
StateOregon
CountiesLincoln, Benton, Linn, Jefferson, Deschutes, Lake, Harney, Malheur
Highway system
OR 19 OR 22

U.S. Route 20 (US 20) is a major west–east cross-state highway in the northern part of the U.S. state of Oregon, especially east of the Cascade Mountains. It connects U.S. Route 101 in Newport on the central Oregon Coast to the Idaho state line east of Nyssa.

Route description

US 20 crossing the Cascade Range at Santiam Pass.

US 20 starts at an intersection with US 101 in Newport, and travels eastward over the Central Oregon Coast Range to Corvallis. In Corvallis, it intersects Oregon Route 99W (OR 99W) and briefly travels concurrent with OR 34 before proceeding northeast to Albany. From Albany, US 20 briefly travels concurrent with OR 99E before turning east through Lebanon and Sweet Home and entering the Cascade Mountains. It intersects OR 126 west of Santiam Pass and the two routes travel concurrent through Sisters. US 20 then continues eastward and southward to Bend, where it travels roughly parallel to US 97 for about 3 miles (4.8 km) before turning east through Brothers and Riley. At Riley, US 20 travels concurrent with US 395 through Hines and Burns to about 2 miles (3.2 km) northeast of Burns. From Burns, US 20 continues east through Juntura and Vale. In Vale, US 20 travels concurrent with US 26, and the two highways continue east to Cairo Junction, south of Ontario, and turn south, where they then also travel concurrently with OR 201 to Nyssa. Eastward from Nyssa, US 20/US 26 continue to the Idaho state line. The route throughout most of Oregon serves as an important link between Central and Southern Oregon and far Northern California to Boise, Idaho.

US 20 viewpoint of the Three Sisters mountains just east of the town of Sisters, Oregon

History

Under the initial 1925 plan for the United States Numbered Highway System, US 20 was originally planned to follow the Columbia River from Astoria to Pendleton and continue southeast into Idaho. The Oregon Highway Commission requested that US 30 be assigned to the Columbia River Highway instead and have US 20 truncated at Pocatello, Idaho. The American Association of State Highway Officials ultimately agreed to truncate US 20 further to Yellowstone National Park, but later extended it via central Oregon in 1940.[2]

A 10-mile (16 km) section of the Corvallis–Newport Highway between Chitwood to Eddyville was replaced by the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) in the early 21st century to accommodate higher traffic volumes. The section, originally opened in 1917, was winding and had no shoulder for vehicle breakdowns. Construction on a straighter, 5.5-mile (8.9 km) route began in 2005 and was planned to be completed in 2009, but landslides and other hazards caused delays.[3] In 2012, ODOT took over the project from the original design–build contractor after an agreement was reached in their liability dispute. The project was completed in October 2016 at a cost of $365 million.[4][5]

In 2017, the Oregon legislature, designated Oregon’s 451-mile stretch of U.S. Route 20 as the state’s official Medal of Honor Highway. Twelve roadside signs were placed along the route to honor Oregon’s Medal of Honor recipients. Oregon was the first state to designate a border-to-border route as its official Medal of Honor Highway. Supporters hope other states will extend the Medal of Honor designation from the Oregon border to highway’s eastern terminus in Massachusetts.[6]

Oregon highway designations

The Oregon section of US 20 consists of the following highways numbered using ODOT's internal numbering system (see Oregon highways and routes), from west to east:

  • The Corvallis-Newport Highway No. 33;
  • Part of the Corvallis-Lebanon Highway No. 210;
  • The Albany-Corvallis Highway No. 31;
  • The Santiam Highway No. 16;
  • Part of the McKenzie Highway No. 15;
  • The McKenzie-Bend Highway No. 17;
  • The Central Oregon Highway No. 7.

Major intersections

Milepoints are as reported by ODOT and do not necessarily reflect current mileage. Z indicates overlapping mileage due to construction longer than established route, and – indicates negative mileage behind established beginning point.[8] Segments that are locally maintained may be omitted. For routes traversing multiple named state highways, each milepoint is preceded by the corresponding state highway number. 

CountyLocation[7]Milepoint[7]DestinationsNotes
LincolnNewport33 0.00
US 101 south – Waldport, Florence

US 101 north – Depoe Bay, Lincoln City
33 5.62

US 20 Bus. east – Toledo
33 5.74 OR 229 – Siletz, Toledo
33 7.49

US 20 Bus. west – Toledo
33 10.34Pioneer Mountain summit, elevation 377 feet (115 m)
33 23.18
OR 180 east (Eddyville–Blodgett Road) – Nashville, Summit
33 31.08Cline Hill summit, elevation 770 feet (230 m)
Benton33 38.28Dudley Hill summit, elevation 860 feet (260 m)
33 39.39
OR 180 west (Eddyville–Blodgett Highway) – Summit, Nashville
33 41.78Gellately Hill summit, elevation 789 feet (240 m)
33 44.57
OR 223 north – Wren, Kings Valley
33 49.73
OR 34 west – Alsea, Waldport
Western end of concurrency with OR 34
Corvallis33 55.67
91 (2)84.07


OR 34 east to I-5
Interchange; eastern end of concurrency with OR 34; eastbound exit and westbound entrance

OR 99W south – Junction City, Eugene
Interchange; western end of concurrency with OR 99W; westbound exit and eastbound entrance
91 (2)83.42
210 –0.05

OR 99W north (NW 3rd Street) – Monmouth, McMinnville
Eastern end of concurrency with OR 99W
210 0.00
31 0.10



To OR 34 east / I-5 – Lebanon
BentonLinn
county line
Albany31 10.44Willamette River
Linn31 11.28
58 2.25

OR 99E south (Pacific Boulevard SW) – Junction City
Western end of concurrency with OR 99E
58 (2)1.45
16 –0.03



OR 99E north to I-5 north – Salem, Portland
Eastern end of concurrency with OR 99E; eastbound exit and westbound entrance
16 1.04–
16 1.08
I-5 – Eugene, Roseburg, Salem, PortlandExit 233 on I-5
16 6.55
OR 226 east – Crabtree, Scio, Lyons
Lebanon16 12.80
OR 34 west – Corvallis
Sweet Home16 27.07
OR 228 west (Holley Road) – Brownsville, Halsey
16 31.19Viewpoint (Foster Lake)
16 46.93Historical marker (Santiam Wagon Road)
16 63.64Tombstone Pass summit, elevation 4,236 feet (1,291 m)
16 71.52
OR 126 west (McKenzie Highway) – Springfield, Eugene
Western end of Route 126 concurrency
16 74.90
OR 22 west – Detroit, Salem
LinnJefferson
county line
16 80.77Santiam Pass summit, elevation 4,817 feet (1,468 m)
Jefferson16 84.57Viewpoint (Mount Washington)
Deschutes16 99.53Historical marker (Santiam Pass Road)
Sisters16 100.12
15 Z92.03

OR 242 west – McKenzie Pass
15 93.07
17 0.00

OR 126 east – Redmond, Prineville
Eastern end of concurrency with OR 126
17 9.09–
17 9.18
Viewpoint
Bend17 18.51

US 97 / US 97 Bus. begins
Interchange; western end of concurrency with US 97 Bus.
17 19.86
US 97 south – Mt. Bachelor, Klamath Falls
Interchange; eastbound exit only

US 97 north – Redmond, Portland
Interchange; westbound exit only
17 20.99
7 0.51


US 97 Bus. south (NE 3rd Street) – Klamath Falls
Eastern end of concurrency with US 97 Bus.
7 19.95Historical marker (prehistoric river)
7 20.56Horse Ridge summit, elevation 4,291 feet (1,308 m)
7 35.65
OR 27 north – Prineville Reservoir
Lake
No major junctions
Harney7 103.03Historical marker (Bannock War)
7 104.69
US 395 south – Wagontire, Valley Falls, Lakeview
Western end of concurrency with US 395
Burns7 131.50
OR 78 east (East Monroe Street) – Crane, Winnemucca
7 134.29
US 395 north – John Day, Pendleton
Eastern end of concurrency with US 395
7 144.25Historical marker (Fort Harney)
7 155.09Historical marker (Great Basin)
7 160.79Stinkingwater Pass, elevation 4,848 feet (1,478 m)
7 177.54Drinkwater Pass, elevation 4,212 feet (1,284 m)
Malheur7 232.99Vines Hill summit, elevation 2,886 feet (880 m)
7 238.78Graham Boulevard (Vale–West Highway No. 451) – Bully Creek Reservoir
Vale7 245.46Graham Boulevard (Vale–West Highway No. 451)
7 246.39
US 26 west (Glenn Street North) – Unity, John Day
Western end of concurrency with US 26
7 253.48Viewpoint (Trenkel Hill vista)
Cairo Junction7 258.20

OR 201 north to I-84 – Ontario
Western end of concurrency with OR 201
Nyssa7 265.97
OR 201 south – Adrian, Lake Owyhee
Eastern end of Route 201 concurrency
7 266.82

US 20 east / US 26 east – Nampa, Boise
Continuation into Idaho across Snake River
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

Special routes

US 20 has 2 business routes in Oregon: one in Toledo, and one in Bend.

See also

References

  1. ^ "US Route 20 in Oregon".
  2. ^ Weingroff, Richard. "What Is The Longest Road in the United States?". Federal Highway Administration. Retrieved September 13, 2021.
  3. ^ "U.S. 20 Pioneer Mountain to Eddyville Project: Background and History" (PDF). Oregon Department of Transportation. p. 1. Retrieved March 7, 2021.
  4. ^ Lehman, Chris (October 11, 2016). "Oregon Finishes Road Replacement 10 Years Later, $220 Million Over Budget". Oregon Public Broadcasting. Retrieved January 30, 2017.
  5. ^ Day, James (March 13, 2016). "Long-delayed Highway 20 project in final stages". Corvallis Gazette-Times. Retrieved March 7, 2021.
  6. ^ Warner, Gary A., "Medal of Honor Highway saluted near Bend", The Bulletin, Bend, Oregon, 16 January 2018.
  7. ^ a b Road Inventory and Classification Services Unit. "Straightline Charts". Transportation Development Division, Oregon Department of Transportation. Retrieved September 22, 2016.
  8. ^ Road Inventory and Classification Services (July 2017). "Straightline Chart Legend" (PDF). Oregon Department of Transportation. Retrieved April 7, 2018.

External links


U.S. Route 20
Previous state:
Terminus
Oregon Next state:
Idaho