Stretch of 126 To Get Widening; Missing Man; Gas Prices; Reedsport School Board; FloGro

Stretch of 126 To Get Widening

The seven mile stretch of Highway 126 between West Eugene and Veneta is mostly a long, flat stretch of roadway with no space for anyone to get off the road if they have a mechanical problem.  Plus, it’s an area that can be prone to crashes.  Molly Cary is a Project Manager with the Oregon Department of Transportation.  She says safety is one big reason for widening the highway sandwiched between Fern Ridge Reservoir and a railroad.

“Somebody goes 55 miles an hour, frequently there is a line of traffic behind them wanting to go 60 or 65, and we do have cases where people will pass unsafely or illegally.”

Safety, while important, is not the only consideration.

“There are folks who are using that highway to commute.  We have folks that need to get to the Eugene area for medical services.”

These are all reasons why ODOT is in the early stages of planning to widen and improve it.  An environmental study of the area is expected to wrap up within the next few weeks.  Once that’s done, Cary says, they’ll start working on how to pay for the project.

Missing Man

Sgt. Tom Speldrich with the Lane County Sheriff’s Department says they still do not know the whereabouts of Mapleton resident Clarence ‘Chuck’ Taylor.  Taylor was reported missing on January 8th and wandered away from his residence sometime on January 7th.  Taylor is described as a white male with gray hair and a gray beard about 5 ‘9” and 165 pounds with brown eyes.  He suffers from dementia and is also hard of hearing.  Anyone with information on Taylor is urged to contact the Lane County Sheriff’s department at 541-682-4150.

Gas Prices

Marie Dodds with AAA Oregon says crude prices continue to rise putting upward pressure on the pumps, but Oregon continues to see modest decreases as winter driving is lessening the demand.  While nationally the price has risen, Oregon overall has seen a drop of 1 cent in the latest report.  Florence has an average price of $3.23 for regular.  That’s a 16 cent decrease from the previous week.

Reedsport School Board

The Reedsport School District will meet next week to discuss the approval of a contractor to work on seismic upgrades to the facilities.  This is a special meeting for the board and will occur on Wednesday January 25th.


The City of Florence is dispensing its FloGro compost.  Sale and distribution of the biosolid is on Tuesdays at the Public Works facility on Kingwood.  Cost for the material is $25.00 per yard.