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Interstate 5 or I -5 is an Interstate Highway in the US state of Oregon. The highway forms a north-south route in the west of the state, through the Cascades and Coast Mountains. The largest city on the route is Portland, and the capital, Salem, is also visited. At Siskiyou Summit, the highway has its highest point on the entire I-5. The route in Oregon is 496 kilometers long.
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I-5 in extreme south Oregon.
I-5 begins at the California state border, from where Interstate 5 enters California from Redding. The highway here has 2×2 lanes and is a winding route through the Klamath Mountains, the highway rises to the 1,314-meter high Siskiyou Summit, located a few miles from the border with California. The highway then descends to the Rogue Valley, located 400 to 500 meters above sea level. The freeway passes through some small towns here, such as Ashland and Medford. The highway runs on overpasses along the center of Medford. I-5 curves slightly to the west and leads through the narrow and winding valley of the Rogue River to Grants Pass, located at 300 meters altitude. From here, I-5 curves north again.
I-5 then heads north through hilly and wooded areas, with several small towns, but no major towns. This section is regularly quite twisty, resulting in long stretches with low maximum speeds. It is a varied route that goes over a few low mountain passes. The highway does not specifically follow the valley of a river, but crosses the hill country.
The dead-straight I-5 through the Willammette Valley between Eugene and Salem.
Then you reach the great Willamette Valley, a north-south oriented valley of the Willamette River. The first city quickly looms, Eugene. The highway runs through the small conurbation, between the centers of Eugene and Springfield. A short section of I-5 through Eugene has 2×3 lanes, elsewhere there are 2×2 lanes. In Eugene, one crosses Interstate 105 and shortly thereafter State Route 569, which is now a freeway.
North of Eugene, a stretch that has no bend for 53 kilometers leads to Albany. The highway leads through the agricultural land of the flat valley and passes through the town of Albany. Further north, I-5 runs through Salem, the Oregon capital. The highway has 2×3 lanes through Salem, with the highway mainly leading through the suburbs. North of Salem, I-5 also has 2×3 lanes to the Portland area.
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The Marquam Interchange on the south side of Downtown Portland.
One approaches the Portland metropolitan area from the south. The first suburb is Wilsonville, which already has a lot of employment opportunities. Interstate 205 turns off in the Tualatin suburb, which provides an alternate route through the eastern suburbs and suburbs. Not far after that, in the suburb of Tigard, State Route 217 branches off, a freeway to the northwest of the conurbation. The highway has a continuous 2×3 lane and then descends into the Willamette River valley where the city of Portland is located.
Around downtown Portland, traffic has two options, the eastbound route on I-5, or the westbound route on I-405. Via the double-deck Marquam Bridge, I-5 crosses the Willamette River and then heads across the riverbank opposite downtown Portland. At the Oregon Convention Center, follow the interchange with Interstate 84. After that there are only 2×2 lanes until the interchange with I-405. The highway then passes through Portland’s northern boroughs with 2×3 lanes, some with HOV lanes. The Interstate Bridge crosses the Columbia River, which forms the border with Washington state. Washington ‘s Interstate 5then continues through Vancouver towards Seattle.