Streetcar Milestone – 50 Million

Dan Bowe
Dan Bower celebrates the milestone with riders

The Portland Streetcar announced in August that than 50 million passengers have ridden the Portland Streetcar since it opened 15 years ago. A critical piece of the city’s infrastructure, Portland Streetcar serves over 15,000 riders daily and has contributed to robust economic development in the neighborhoods it serves.

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I-5 Overpass Reconstruction Moving Forward

I-5 Overpass Reconstruction
I-5 Overpass Reconstruction

“The Box”

The recently adopted NE Quadrant Plan (a part of the Central City and Comprehensive Plans) was conducted in cooperation with the Transportation offices of the State (ODOT) and City (PDOT) to coordinate ODOT’s plans to expand capacity on I-5 through the Rose Quarter and the I-5 ramps with PDOT’s plans for the area between at Broadway/Weidler, an area known as “the Box”.

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NE 7th Avenue Greenway Update

7th9thgreenwayAn update from Bicycle Transportation Alliance regarding the 7th/9th Greenway project…

A bicycle and pedestrian bridge across I-84 could provide the continuous north-south route that inner Portland needs. NE 7th Avenue would provide a safe route north from the highway and NE/SE 9th Avenue would provide a safe, low-traffic route to the south. We predict that this corridor — connecting the Lloyd District, a burgeoning inner eastside industrial district, neighborhoods like Powell and Brooklyn, and recently built streetcar and light-rail stations — would quickly become one of Portland’s most heavily used and important neighborhood greenways.

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Letter from the LUTC Chair

Bikeway Marking
Rodney Bikeway Marking

There wasn’t too much Land Use news this month, but on the transportation side of things there were a number of things happening.  First and foremost, the gas tax increase of 10 cents/gallon increased, which will provide money for repaving and reconfiguring some streets.  This is seen as an opportunity to get changes on NE 7th avenue including removing the unsafe roundabouts which have caused many crashes over the years.  There is a group of folks focused on making NE 7th a better place to be and a safer place to walk and bike.

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Building a Better Broadway Street

3 Lanes of Broadway
3 Lanes of Broadway

Northeast Broadway and Weidler Streets between the Willamette River and Northeast 24th Avenue are streets that are looking for traffic.  Currently, the number of cars on Broadway and Weidler do not, even during the busiest rush hours, meet even 70% of the designed capacity of the streets. That is to say that the streets are bigger than they need to be in terms of the number of lanes that are striped on them.  What are the consequences of this?  Cars can speed down Broadway and Weidler streets quickly all day and all night.

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Bike Registration that Works

BikeIndexBryan Hance started StolenBicycleRegistry.com in 2004 because he was tired of having bikes stolen. Seth Herr started the Bike Index in 2013 because he was a bike mechanic and wished there was an easy way to register bikes for his customers. They merged Bike Index and SBR in July of 2014 because it made perfect sense—Seth makes sure registration is effortless, and Bryan recovers stolen bikes.

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1960’s Design of NE Broadway

(click to see bigger)
(click to see bigger)

During the construction of Interstate 84 through Sullivan’s gulch, NE Broadway was, for 4 years used as the way to connect from a completed part of the highway, east of Hollywood, to the rest of Portland.  During this time, NE Broadway was widened and converted to be the fast, wide road it is today.  This design, which could have been temporary, was never really considered for changes.

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A/B Loops Now Running

The Loop Streetcar testing on NE Broadway.  Photo courtesy Portland Streetcar Inc.
The Loop Streetcar 

This fall, the Portland Streetcar expanded service on both sides of the river. The Central Loop became two new lines: the A Loop and B Loop. When the new routes opened on September 12th, they started carrying riders between Portland’s East and West sides and connecting popular Portland destinations via the new Tilikum Crossing.

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Update on Rodney Greenway

Ivy Diverter June 2015 Proposal
Ivy Diverter June 2015 Proposal

Starting 6 years ago, there was a long series of discussions about N Williams and what the community wanted to see there. A big part of that was seeing a neighborhood street with thriving businesses; seeing a street that was easy to cross and one that was not a racetrack for cut-through drivers. We have nearby MLK Blvd and Interstate-5 serving those purposes.

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Williams Reaches Substantial Completion

Williams Safety ProjectJust before the ball dropped to celebrate the new year, Portland Bureau of Transportation announced that the “N Williams Safety Project reached substantial completion”.  One of the major tasks completed in December was installing the permanent light at Cook.  There is still some minor work to do on Williams and the Rodney Bikeway portion has yet to begun.  It is nice for travelers along the corridor, whether in a car, on a bike or on foot, to see construction wind down and to take advantage of the improvements.

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Walking in the street for years

MLK Sidewalk Closed
Sidewalk closed on MLK

Over the past 3 years, a construction project at the corner of NE Monroe and NE Martin Luther King, Junior Boulevard (MLK) has blocked the sidewalk on the west side of MLK. This has created a situation where people can either walk 1200 feet out of direction by going to Rodney and back, cross MLK twice or just walk in the road.

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