Planning is underway for a light rail line in the region’s SW corridor, located along I-5 and 99W. Over the next 25 years, this corridor will experience the most growth across the region .
But it is currently under-served by transit, so light rail service will provide a reliable and affordable way to get to existing and future jobs, educational opportunities, shopping and homes in the corridor.
This multibillion-dollar infrastructure investment will attract additional private and public investments, bringing more jobs and businesses, improved community services and amenities as well as housing choices to the area.
We have an opportunity with the SW Corridor light rail line — and the accompanying public and private investments — to create benefits for those who have traditionally been under-served and even harmed by major transportation projects.
The benefits of these once-in-a-lifetime improvements should be available to everybody.
It’s no secret that Portland and the region are growing, and more people are having difficulty keeping up with the rising cost of living. People of color and immigrants are affected the most as they are pushed farther away from desirable neighborhoods with amenities and access to transit.
The City of Portland has partnered with other jurisdictions and community organizations to align this major public investment in transit with our values: inclusion, equal access to opportunity and diversity in our region.
In 2018 the City of Portland adopted the SW Corridor Equitable Housing Strategy (EHS). This new strategy sets housing goals and targets to preserve and create more housing opportunities for households of all types and incomes.
As we begin planning for complete and inclusive communities in the SW Corridor, starting with South Portland and West Portland Town Center future light rail station areas, we will build on the SW Corridor Equitable Housing Strategy work, prior planning and Comprehensive Plan policies that call for inclusive, connected and healthy places for our community.
SW Corridor Light Rail Project
In November of 2018 the light rail project reached a major milestone with the adoption of a Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA). The LPA will be the foundation for further alignment and station area location and design work through 2020, which will result in a Final Environmental Impact Statement and Conceptual Design Report. A Metro regional transportation funding measure is expected in November 2020. BPS’s SW Corridor planning will result in plans adopted by City Council in the summer of 2020.