SUNRIVER, OR -- A Sunriver bridge popular with recreators looking for easy river access could soon see changes. Deschutes County Commissioners will discuss a project Monday that aims to solve access and safety issues at Harper Bridge, on Spring River Road.
County Roads Director Chris Doty tells KBND News, "It's been promoted, from a recreational standpoint - between standup paddle boarding and a variety of other activities. People love access to the river; they love to get on the water, and that is something that gets a lot of use, and therefore a lot of parking adjacent to that activity area." And, that parking is now causing concern over the degradation of the riverbank, trespassing and pedestrians, "We have upwards of 100 vehicles that are parked on Spring River Road during peak weekends of the year. And, that proximity of high speed traffic next to people with kids and pets running around, that creates a safety issue."
Doty says County Commissioners will look at possible solutions, "The community, and the adjacent residents: Crosswater [and] Sunriver Owners' Association aren't thrilled, perhaps, with that level of activity taking place next to their developments, and the safety issue of high speed traffic next to parked vehicles." One proposal would create a dedicated parking area, near Harper Bridge, but residents are not enthusiastic about losing portions of their land for the proposed lot. Doty says if a solution can't be found and agreed upon, river access from Harper Bridge might have to close.