Construction at the Siskiyou Rest Area and Welcome Center is expected to resume after wet winter weather idled much of the work. The second phase, constructing the facility’s buildings, is scheduled to begin later this year.
The Interstate 5 facility is being built about two miles south of Ashland’s Exit 14 and two miles north of the former rest area.
The old rest area was closed in 1997 for public safety, following a series of commercial truck crashes. Construction on the new rest area and welcome center began in November 2015.
Prime contractor Wildish Standard Paving of Eugene focused on earthwork, paving and drainage during the project’s first phase. The work included grading and paving the I-5 ramps as well as construction of the facility’s parking lot, driveways and a service road from Crowson Road. The service road is being used to deliver materials during construction and, later, will be used for daily operational needs, including staff
The facility will serve as a signature destination for northbound travelers, those just needing to stretch their legs and visitors to Oregon wanting to learn more about the state’s tourism opportunities.
The second phase will build two Cascadia-themed buildings, which add to the gateway theme for visitors. The environmentally friendly design and sustainable ethic will match that of the Welcome to Oregon sign at the California border as well as the new interchange aesthetics constructed at Ashland Exits 14 and 19.