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Portland Bureau of Transportation

Phone: 503-823-5185

Fax: 503-823-7576

1120 SW Fifth Ave, Suite 800, Portland, OR 97204

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Media Relations

Dylan Rivera
503-823-3723

For breaking news from Portland Bureau of Transportation see our Twitter feed: @PBOTinfo

For breaking news on overall service disruptions in the Portland-Vancouver metro area, go to @publicalerts or see www.publicalerts.org 


Traffic Alert: NW Front Ave closed at NW Kittridge for emergency rail repairs

(Sept. 4, 2015) The Portland Bureau of Transportation has closed NW Front Avenue at NW Kittridge Avenue for emergency rail line repairs after a train car derailment this morning on a private spur that crosses NW Front Avenue. Detours will be in place until repairs can be completed by the spur owner, but it is not yet known how long the closure will last.

There was damage to the asphalt between the rail lines, so responsibility for repairs belongs to the spur owner.

PBOT's Maintenance Operations staff have set up hard closures of NW Front on both sides of the spur and will be putting out Variable Message Signs to notify the traveling public of the closures.

It has not been determined yet how long the road will need to be closed.

The public is advised to avoid the area if possible. PBOT has set up detours for motorists who may need to travel through the area:

South of NW Kittridge Ave on NW Front Ave:

Take NW Kittridge Ave to HWY 30 (NW Yeon Ave),

Turn Left onto HWY 30 (NW Yeon Ave)

Travel approximately 2 miles to NW 26th Drive

Turn Left on to NW 26th Drive

Take NW 26th Drive to NW Front Ave

Turn left or Right depending on your destination.


North of NW 26th Drive from NW Front Ave are

Take NW 26th Drive to HWY 30 (NW Yeon Ave)

Turn Right onto HWY 30 (NW Yeon Ave)

Take HWY 30 (NW Yeon Ave) to NW Kittridge Ave

Turn Right onto NW Kittridge Ave

Take Kittridge Ave to NW Front Ave

Turn Left onto Front Ave to your destination

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Portland’s Balch Gulch Bridge Project Named to APWA 2015 Public Works Projects of the Year

The Balch Gulch Bridge at NW Thurman Street Rehabilitation Project was awarded the APWA Project of the Year in the Historical Restoration/Preservation category at a cost less than $5 million.

(September 3, 2015) - Congratulations to PBOT's Bridges and Structures Group on winning the American Public Works Association 2015 Public Works Project of the Year Award!

APWA Public Works Project of the Year Award 2015The Balch Gulch Bridge at NW Thurman Street Rehabilitation Project was awarded the APWA Project of the Year in the Historical Restoration/Preservation category at a cost less than $5 million. The bridge is 110 years old and is a noteworthy historic and engineering treasure, built during the 1905 Lewis and Clark Centennial Exposition and World’s Trade Fair as a gateway to Portland’s developing Willamette Heights neighborhood. It is Oregon’s oldest intact bridge, and is one of only few remaining of its type in the nation.

At the reopening celebration on October 10, 2014, Commissioner Novick said, “Not only does the Thurman Street Bridge have a great historic legacy, it is a hallmark of the surrounding neighborhood. Through well-coordinated collaboration of multiple City bureaus and government agencies, we were able to preserve the historic character of the bridge while modernizing it to meet today’s needs."

The rehabilitation project exemplifies the integration of contemporary uses and systems for an out-of-date structure without compromising function or historic preservation. The decision to preserve the historic bridge was inspired not only by the public and government agencies, but also by the Bridges and Structures Group at Portland's Bureau of Transportation. The age of the bridge and its poor condition, its unique characteristics, and its special place in Portland history, as well as its eligibility for the National Register of Historic Places, made the rehabilitation of the Balch Gulch Bridge the only viable option. Federal-aid funds were sought and obtained, and after a local agency match, the total project budget was approximately $4 million. 

Thurman Street bridge with trolleyBefore the rehabilitation, City engineers placed restrictions intended to slow the bridge’s deterioration. Fire trucks were prohibited from using it, so Portland Fire & Rescue emergency responders had to use a longer route to enter the neighborhood.

With the rehabilitation complete, the weight restriction has been lifted and fire trucks can now cross the bridge. By regaining the use of the NW Thurman Street Bridge, the response time for Portland Fire & Rescue Emergency Operations has improved in many areas of the the neighborhood by over 4 minutes!

The rehabilitation project of Balch Gulch Bridge installed a new decorative railing, modeled after the 1905 original.

Restoration and rehabilitation of the bridge began in April 2014 with the goals: to lift the weight restriction without replacing the historic trusses; rehabilitate the bridge’s deteriorated superstructure while maintaining and honoring the historic aesthetics of the bridge; restore the original appearance of the 1905 historic bridge handrail, but strengthen it to meet modern safety standards; design the modern steel floor beams to match the shape of the deteriorated historic riveted steel beams; replace the deteriorated wood deck and riveted steel beams, while shoring the historic trusses in place; and ensure that Macleay Park would remain open to the public during construction.

The completely restored and modernized Balch Gulch Bridge at NW Thurman Street was reopened to the public October 10, 2014 during a celebration hosted by Commissioner Steve Novick and the Portland Bureau of Transportation.

Learn more about the restoration of this beautiful bridge on the NW Thurman Street Bridge Project webpage.

Photo of rehabilitated bridge by Felicity J. Mackay, Portland Bureau of Transportation.

Traffic Advisory: Drainage improvements on SE Holgate Blvd. to close lanes, detour westbound traffic from SE 122nd Ave. to SE 128th Ave., Sunday Aug. 30

(Aug. 28, 2015) – The City of Portland Bureau of Transportation advises the traveling public that drainage improvements will require lane closures on SE Holgate Boulevard from SE 122nd Avenue to SE 128th Avenue on Sunday, Aug. 30 from 7 a.m. through 5 p.m. or later.

Workers will install a new sump to conduct rainwater off the roadway and allow it to disperse underground.

Eastbound lanes are expected to remain open. Westbound travelers on SE Holgate will be detoured to the south on 128th Avenue to west on Harold Street, to north on 122nd Avenue to return to Holgate Boulevard and continue westbound.

For information on possible impacts to TriMet bus service, check trimet.org/alerts.

Access will be maintained for businesses and residents during the project.

The traveling public is advised to expect delays. We ask the public to travel cautiously, observe all lane closures and directions by reader boards and flaggers, and use alternate routes if possible.

This work is weather-dependent and the schedule may change.

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The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) is the steward of the City’s transportation system, and a community partner in shaping a livable city. We plan, build, manage and maintain an effective and safe transportation system that provides access and mobility. www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation

Traffic Advisory: Street cleaning on NW Cornell Road to close NW Cornell Road from NW Westover to 5151 NW Cornell, Aug. 28 to Aug. 29

(August 26, 2015)  – The City of Portland Bureau of Transportation advises the traveling public that street cleaning will require a road closure on NW Cornell Road from NW Westover to 5151 NW Cornell Road (at the Audubon Society) starting Friday, August 28th, at 9 p.m. and continuing through Saturday morning, Aug. 29, at 5 a.m.

The road closure will allow crews to clean debris and vegetation from the sidewalks and the sides of the roadway.

The traveling public is advised to expect delays while the cleaning is conducted. We ask the public to travel cautiously, observe all closures and directions by reader boards, and use alternate routes if possible.

This work is weather-dependent and the schedule may change.

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The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) is the steward of the City’s transportation system, and a community partner in shaping a livable city. We plan, build, manage and maintain an effective and safe transportation system that provides access and mobility. www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation

Traffic Advisory: Street improvements on NE Halsey St. to close lanes from NE 132nd Ave. to NE 148th Ave., Aug. 24 - Sept. 11

(Aug. 21, 2015)  – The City of Portland Bureau of Transportation advises the traveling public that street improvements will require lane closures on NE Halsey Street from NE 132nd Avenue to NE 148th Avenue starting Monday, Aug. 24, through Friday, Sep. 11, from 7 a.m. through 5 p.m. each work day.

The lane closures will allow crews to pave 4.93 lane miles of NE Halsey Street.

NE Halsey Street includes bike lanes and public transit stops. During work hours, expect to see signs indicating lane closures and detours. Consider using alternate routes. Work hours likely will not affect evening rush hour, though morning peak hours may be affected.

For information on possible impacts to TriMet bus service, check trimet.org/alerts.

Streets with ground down surfaces are open for travel. Lane closures are only in effect during project hours. Access will be maintained for businesses and residents during the project.

The traveling public is advised to expect delays while repairs are being made. We ask the public to travel cautiously, observe all lane closures and directions by reader boards and flaggers, and use alternate routes if possible.

This work is weather-dependent and the schedule may change.

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The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) is the steward of the City’s transportation system, and a community partner in shaping a livable city. We plan, build, manage and maintain an effective and safe transportation system that provides access and mobility. www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation