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Dylan Rivera

Public Information Officer

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 


News Blog: Developing a strategy for safe streets and a growing city in East Portland

How do you feel when you travel the major streets of East Portland?

congestion on East Portland street

(June 24, 2019) – How do you feel when you travel the major streets of East Portland? The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) is seeking feedback from East Portlanders about their transportation experiences and investment preferences for the major streets of East Portland. The survey is part of the ongoing the East Portland Arterial Streets Strategy (EPASS).

The EPASS project is developing a strategy for addressing safety issues on some of the most dangerous streets in Portland, while also planning for a growing city. East Portland is home to many major streets with the highest and deadliest rate of crashes for pedestrians, bicycle riders, and vehicle drivers alike. These major streets are wider, faster and tend to carry more traffic, while also being used by a mix of travel types.

EPASS map

The EPASS network includes all streets owned by the City that have four or more vehicle lanes between 82nd Avenue and the eastern City limits. Nine out of the eleven roadways in the network are part of Portland’s identified High Crash Network. EPASS will use a safe systems approach that focuses on street design and safety improvements to reduce fatal and life-altering injury crashes. The improvement projects will use tools that not only reduce the most life-altering crashes and fatalities, but minimize risk for all people on the street, particularly when they are moving at different speeds.

The EPASS project is also analyzing how people get around in East Portland by taking a comprehensive look at all existing and planned capital projects on the network. This ensures that we are planning our projects while being mindful of the impacts and benefits they have to the whole transportation system. The project is will look at how changes to some major streets in the network impact other streets, including neighborhood streets. In addition to changes to driving, the team will also look at how changes to the street could make walking, using transit, or riding a bicycle safer and more convenient for those traveling in East Portland.

To learn more about the project, visit our website at www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/epass to find materials and sign up to receive project updates. You can share your priorities and concerns by participating in the online survey at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/EPASSopinionsurvey until July 15th.

News Blog: New Vision Zero pilot project aims to make left turns safer

left turn calming at 122nd and market

Before and after: A left turn calming "hardened centerline" at SE 122nd and Market Street was installed earlier this month by PBOT crews. Photos by Kirstin Byer, Portland Bureau of Transportation.

Vision Zero Portland logo

(June 20, 2019) One of the trickiest driving maneuvers is getting safer in Portland.

The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) has begun installing “left turn calming” at 29 intersections. The new treatment uses a combination of materials to slow turning speeds, prevent corner cutting, and increase the visibility of pedestrians.

In addition to slowing turning speeds—an important safety benefit—left turn calming changes the angle at which people driving approach crosswalks. This makes it less likely that a vehicle’s A-pillar blocks a pedestrian from view.

Left turn calming can include several elements:

  • A “hardened centerline” uses flexible posts or modular rubber speed bumps on centerlines approaching crosswalks to prevent people from cutting a turn.
  • Some locations also include a “nose” made up of a modular rubber speed bump that extends slightly into an intersection.
  • Finally, a “wedge” uses modular speed bumps at corners to further slow turning speeds and deter corner cutting.

PBOT expects to finish our pilot project installation this summer and will evaluate the results in 2020. The pilot project will be judged successful if the treatment results in slower turning speeds, reduced corner cutting, and reasonable maintenance costs. PBOT may expand left turn calming to more intersections if the pilot is successful.

Funding for the pilot project is provided through Portland’s local sales tax on recreational cannabis.

Left turn data

Left turns a danger to pedestrians

Left turns present many safety challenges. Drivers making left turns need to watch for opposing traffic, including people biking and on motorcycles, and for people in the crosswalk.

During rush hour, left turning drivers may feel pressure from those behind them to make a turn quickly, leading to risky maneuvers. The danger becomes greater at night or in bad weather when there is low-visibility.

Our crash data for Portland reflects these challenges. Left turns into pedestrians are one of the most common pedestrian crash types on Portland’s High Crash Network streets. The figure above shows that nearly three-quarters of pedestrian crashes in Portland occur at intersections, usually those with signals.

Cities including New York City and Washington, D.C. have both installed left turn calming. Early results in those cities have been promising, leading PBOT to launch a pilot project to evaluate the treatment on Portland streets.

For questions about the left turn calming pilot, email Matt Kelly or call 503-823-5831

News Release: Transportation Commissioner Chloe Eudaly and Director Chris Warner join community members to celebrate the transformation of SE Foster Road

Major project funding came from Fixing Our Streets

Cutting the ribbon on Foster

From left to right: Foster Area Business Association President Allen Rowand, Foster-Powell Neighborhood Association Co-chair Eric Furlong, Portland Mercado Director Shea Flaherty Betin, Transportation Commissioner Chloe Eudaly, Transportation Director Chris Warner and Prosper Portland Commissioner Peter Platt cut the ribbon on the Foster Transportation and Streetscape Project. Photo by Stacy Brewster, Portland Bureau of Transportation.

FOS logo

(June 13, 2019) The Foster Transportation and Streetscape Project is complete and almost 40 city blocks in Southeast Portland have been transformed from an unsafe, high-crash corridor to a walkable and bikeable commercial main street for Portlanders of all ages to enjoy. The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) celebrated the completion of the project with a ribbon cutting ceremony alongside Transportation Commissioner Chloe Eudaly, Transportation Director Chris Warner, representatives of the Foster Area Business and Neighborhood Associations, the Portland Mercado and Hacienda CDC, and Prosper Portland. Together they delighted in the positive impact the street improvements have already had in the neighborhood and looked ahead to a summer full of activities encouraging people to explore the newly improved street and thriving neighborhood.

SE 85th and Foster

A person bikes on the freshly paved section of SE Foster Road at SE 85th Avenue, adjacent to newly planted street trees and a 10-foot wide sidewalk. Photo by Hannah Schafer, Portland Bureau of Transportation.

Funded by the Fixing Our Streets program, the Foster Transportation and Streetscape Project delivered a street that is safer and more attractive for people walking, biking, taking transit and driving. With improved crossings and other safety features, modern signals, new pavement, 190 street trees and new decorative street lights, the project has transformed Foster Road into an inviting thoroughfare that supports a vibrant commercial district and enhances the quality of life in the surrounding neighborhoods.

Foster Area Walk, Bike and Transit Map

The project extends from SE 50th Avenue to the western edge of the Lents Town Center at SE 90th Avenue. The changes to the street and urban design transformed Foster Road from a high speed, auto-oriented corridor into a more balanced streetscape that is safer and more accessible for people walking, biking, taking transit and driving. Additionally, the new design supports and enhances the growing mix of businesses and residences in the neighborhood.

Funding for the $9 million Foster Road project came from the Fixing our Streets Program, the Lents Town Center Urban Renewal District, Portland Transportation System Development Charges and a federal grant.

Holgate and Foster

New traffic signals, ornamental street lights and bike lanes at the corner of SE Foster Road and Holgate Boulevard. Photo by Hannah Schafer, Portland Bureau of Transportation.

“Thank you to the community for your patience and understanding throughout the construction of this project. It has been many years of planning, development and construction, but I know it was worth the wait,” said Transportation Commissioner Chloe Eudaly. “I am particularly looking forward to the events and activities that PBOT and community organizations have put together on SE Foster Road for the summer! Now that construction is finished, it’s time to get out and enjoy this public space together.”

“This is a street that will support a vibrant commercial district, that will add to the quality of life in this neighborhood, and that people – whether they are walking, biking, rolling or driving – will want to use every day,” said Transportation Director Chris Warner. “To me, that is the power of what we do. We don’t just make Portland a better place to get around, we make it a better place to live.”

“As a small business owner, I’m especially pleased to celebrate better connections for businesses and residents in east Portland,” said Peter Platt, Prosper Portland Commissioner and founder and owner of Andina Restaurant. “The completion of the Foster Transportation and Streetscape Project marks a milestone in Prosper Portland’s strategic goals to pursue transportation improvements in east Portland to realize job growth, increase connectivity and complement community-drive action plans…creating healthy, complete neighborhoods throughout Portland.”

"As we celebrate our new streetscape on Foster, we celebrate the potential for equitable neighborhood growth," said Shea Flaherty Betin, Director of the Portland Mercado. "We envision increased economic opportunity along Foster for small businesses, for POC entrepreneurs, and for the thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem we have here at the Mercado. I’m excited to see more families biking to our massive festivals and events, or to see more folks walking on our new sidewalks to grab an empanada, or some coffee, or a sangria in the evening."

"The Foster Area Business Association is pleased to celebrate the completion of the Foster Streetscape project. We welcome Foster Road's transition from a highway to a main street for our district and the surrounding neighborhoods,” said Allen Rowand, President of the Foster Area Business Association. “We look forward to Foster being safer for pedestrians, cyclists, and drivers, as well as bringing more visibility and easier access to our businesses. The Streetscape is the next step in Foster's growth as a destination and we thank PBOT for their support of the district throughout the project."

"Foster-Powell Neighborhood Association is excited to see the completion of the SE Foster Streetscape," said Eric Furlong, Co-Chair of the Foster-Powell Neighborhood Association. "With the improvements on Foster I am certain it will help make the street safer for all users, increase the number of patrons to local businesses and add a lasting beauty to very needed area."

Learn more about the Foster Transportation and Streetscape Project at www.saferfoster.com.

Summer Fun on Foster!

 Foster Summer Events Wheel

With the project complete and summer beginning, now is the time to get out and experience the new and improved Foster Road. To encourage people to get out and about, PBOT has developed a summer-long line up of community and PBOT-hosted events that are easily accessible by walking, rolling, biking or riding transit called the Foster Letter Hunt.

Participants in the Foster Letter Hunt can collect a secret letter at each of the ten events to be entered into a raffle for one of four $500 Visa gift cards at the end of summer:

June 16 – July 20: #FosterFaves Photo Contest

What is your favorite business on Foster Road? During these dates, when you post a photo inside your favorite Foster business to Instagram or Facebook with #FosterFaves you’ll get a chance to win a prize. Each week there is a theme, click here to find out what the theme is. Photos will be judged by the event host, the Foster Area Business Association (FABA).

June 16 – July 8: Visit a Local Bike Shop

Dust off the bike sitting in storage and get it serviced for a smooth ride. Show the mailer promoting the Letter Hunt to Bike FrequencyBackpedal Cycleworks, or NW Pro Gear to get $5 off any service or repair! Limit one discount per mailer and while supplies last. This offer expires on July 8, 2019.

July 10: Sweet and Savory Summer Bike Ride - 5:45 PM. Starts at Woodstock Park (SE 47th Ave and Harold St)    

Free sweet and savory treats to bribe you to take an easy ride through comfortable biking streets in the neighborhood and the new bike lanes on Foster Road. This event is hosted by PBOT Portland By Cycle which offers free guided bike rides and classes almost year-round.

July 13: Let’s Go FoPo NeighborWalks hosted by AARP Oregon - 10:00 AM. Starts at Essex Park (SE 79th Ave and Center St)

Join us for a leisurely pace walk through Foster-Powell neighborhood hosted by AARP Oregon and its volunteers. All ages and abilities are welcome. The NeighborWalks series is a volunteer-run program that is run by AARP Oregon in partnership with PBOT and Oregon Walks. If you are planning to attend, please register ahead of time to save time on the day of the event.

July 20: Foster Tasting Tour hosted by FABA - 2:00-10:00 PM. Various Locations on SE Foster Rd between Powell Ave and 82nd Ave

A family-friendly Tasting Tour hosted by the Foster Area Business Association (FABA) where you can try everything from booze to board games. Start out at any of the participating businesses, pick up your passport book and start tasting! Go to the Tasting Tour event webpage for details. Not only will you get a raffle entry for collecting your secret letter, you can also win prizes by filling up your Tasting Tour passport!

August 3: Lents Green Ring Ten Toe Walk - 9:00 AM. Starts at Glenwood Park, SE 87th and Glenwood St

Join us for a medium pace walk through the four legs of the Lents Green Ring--a loop of greenways and connected paths that highlight Lents community spaces. This event is hosted by PBOT Ten Toe Express Walks, which offers free guided walks throughout spring and summer.

August 6: The Art of Foster Bike Ride - 5:45 PM. Starts at Portland Mercado (7238 SE Foster Rd)

Take a look at public art near and along Foster Road, which is now more bike- and walk-friendly. This event is hosted by PBOT Portland By Cycle which offers free guided bike rides and classes almost year-round.

August 11: Lents Fair - 11:00-4:00 PM. SE Harold St and SE 92nd Ave

Now in its fourth year, the Lents Fair is a free and family-friendly celebration of summer and community that features local vendors, foods, and a Chicken Beauty Contest.

August 18: Grocery & Market Transit Tour - Event time and starting location TBD

Foster Road is home to food sources that are both healthy and highlight the cultural diversity of Southeast Portland. Join us as we hop on and off the bus to visit grocery stores and markets up and down Foster. Transit fare will be provided up to the first 25 people, and staff will be available to answer your transit questions. Time and starting location are still to be determined but we will end the tour where we start.

September 7: Portland Mercado Taste of Latinoamérica Festival - Event time TBD. Portland Mercado (7238 SE Foster Rd)

Stop by the PBOT booth at this Portland Mercado event, celebrating the flavors of Latin America.

Visit www.saferfoster.com for additional details and contest rules for all events.

Fixing Our Streets Banner

Traffic Advisory: SE Milwaukie Ave CLOSED from SE Ellis to SE Knight all day today for emergency sewer repair

SE Milwaukie Avenue site 

(June 13, 2019) – A section of Southeast Milwaukie Avenue will be closed all day today as Portland Bureau of Transportation crews work to fix a broken sewer main that damaged a large section of the roadway.

Work in the area could take multiple days, resulting in lane or road closures beyond today.

The sewer main is believed to be at least 80 years old. Crews are working to secure the work site, working around multiple utilities including natural gas lines, to reach the main, which is about 18 feet below ground.

Southeast Milwaukie Avenue is closed between SE Ellis Street and SE Knight Street.

The traveling public should avoid the area today. Obey traffic control barricades, signage and directions from PBOT crews. Use caution on detour routes, as detours may cause additional traffic congestion on residential streets.

A detour for northbound traffic directs travelers east on SE Knight, north on SE 17th, then west on SE Ellis to return to SE Milwaukie. Southbound traffic is detoured west at SE Ellis, south at SE 15th Ave and east on SE Ramona to return to SE Milwaukie.

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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: A smoother street, new left turn lanes coming to N Albina Street from N Rosa Parks Way to N Skidmore Street starting today

(June 11, 2019) – Street improvements begin today on N Albina Street from N Rosa Parks Way to N Skidmore Street. Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) crews will work on the street starting today through July 12 on weekdays, and occasional weekends, from 7 a.m. through 4 p.m. with periodic lane closures during that time. 

The lane closures will allow crews to grind and pave 2.44 lane miles of pavement.

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.

Transit Priority Restriping at Albina and Alberta

Following the repaving of N Albina Street, the road will be restriped with an improved street configuration to benefit bus and automobile traffic. During repaving projects, PBOT seeks to improve traffic operations and safety for all road users. By combining maintenance projects with operational improvements, such as new striping configurations, PBOT maintains the transportation system and improves travel conditions more efficiently.

Currently, vehicles trying to turn left from N Albina onto N Alberta Street and N Rosa Parks Way must use a single through travel lane. During the most congested times of the day, those left turning vehicles can block automobile traffic and TriMet's Line 4 buses. To improve automobile operations and keep buses moving, PBOT plans to add left turn lanes on N Albina Street approaching the intersections with N Alberta Street and N Rosa Parks Way. Line 4 buses travel through these intersections over 150 times on weekdays, with buses arriving every 15 minutes or better much of the day every day, providing access to St Johns, PCC Cascade, Emanuel Hospital, and Downtown Portland.

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