Skip to Main Content View Text-Only

The City of Portland, Oregon

Portland Bureau of Transportation

Phone: 503-823-5185

Fax: 503-823-7576

1120 SW Fifth Ave, Suite 1331, Portland, OR 97204

More Contact Info

Media Relations

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 


Traffic Advisory: West Burnside to remain closed through Friday afternoon, and potentially through next week; use U.S. 26 or NW Cornell Road

(11:45 a.m. Jan. 18, 2017) The Portland Bureau of Transportation advises the traveling public that West Burnside Street will remain closed through Friday afternoon, and potentially through next week, as crews work to clear a 50-foot tall landslide that looms over the roadway.

West Burnside has been closed to through traffic from NW Skyline to NW 23rd Avenue.

The road is closed to all through traffic. Travelers should consider U.S. 26 or NW Cornell Road as alternative routes for through traffic. Expect delays on area roads during rush hour and consider public transit. Check trimet.org/alerts for information about public transit schedules and delays.

Given the size of the slide and its location adjacent to the roadway, and with a house right above the slide, it is important for PBOT engineers to ensure the stability of the hillside in order to protect the safety of the traveling public and city workers.

Numerous downed trees must be cleared before PBOT engineers have a clear view of the scene and can fully assess what is needed to make the roadway safe for city crews and the public. A 100-foot tall Douglas fir tree adjacent to a home must be removed. Crews from Portland Parks & Recreation urban forestry crews must remove other trees in the slide area.

Debris was still falling from the slide last night and Thursday morning.

An estimated at least 75 cubic yards of material must be removed by PBOT crews, potentially taking six to 12 dump truck loads.

We will provide an update on Friday.

Avoid the area. Use alternate routes. Obey street closed and detour signage. Use caution and travel slowly on detour routes and area streets.

Local access for residents only is permitted westbound to NW Uptown Terrace and eastbound to NW Maywood Drive and NW Hermosa Blvd and nearly streets.


###

Traffic Alert: West Burnside has reopened to eastbound and westbound travel after Wednesday night landslide

Workers clearing landslde

PBOT crews cleared more than 200 cubic yards of debris and vegetation from the landslide on West Burnside on Thursday and Friday. In this photo from Friday, they use heavy equipment to clear the area. Photo by Cameron Glasgow, Portland Bureau of Transportation. 

(4:45 p.m. Jan. 20, 2017) The Portland Bureau of Transportation advises the traveling public that West Burnside Street has been reopened with one lane of travel in each direction. Travelers should use caution and observe traffic control signage in the area, as the location of lanes has shifted slightly. 

PBOT engineers and maintenance crews, foresters from Portland Parks & Recreation worked to clear the site and make it safe, coordinating work with a nearby landowner. Bureau of Development Services inspected the site to make sure private property was safe. 

WATCH VIDEO: 100-foot tall Douglas fir tree being felled from the slide, after the top half was cut off: https://youtu.be/U5JXbjWhGaA 

About 200 feet of West Burnside closest to the slide has been reduced to one lane each direction, down from two lanes westbound and one lane eastbound. Travelers should use caution and be mindful of the orange traffic delineators and signage that mark the area. 
West Burnside is open to traffic
Debris continues to fall from the 50-foot tall landslide that looms over the north side of the roadway. The area of the slide is shallow enough that engineers decided it was safe to reopen part of the roadway to traffic. Jersey barriers are in place to catch any debris that might fall from the slide. At this time, there is no estimate for when the additional westbound travel lane may be reopened. 

PBOT crews cleared more than 200 cubic yards of fallen soil and vegetation from the area, which had been closed since about 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2016. 

Given the size of the slide and its location adjacent to the roadway, and with a house right above the slide, it is important for PBOT engineers to ensure the stability of the hillside in order to protect the safety of the traveling public and city workers. 

Numerous downed trees were cleared before PBOT engineers could get a clear view of the scene and assess what was needed to make the roadway safe for city crews and the public. 

A 100-foot tall Douglas fir tree adjacent to a home was removed by a contractor for the homeowner. Crews from Portland Parks & Recreation urban forestry removed other trees in the slide area. 

(Photos by Portland Bureau of Transportation) 

Workers secure landslide

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Work to secure the landslide continued on Friday. Photo by Dylan Rivera, Portland Bureau of Transportation.  

 

 

 


### 

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. Learn more at www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation

Travel Advisory: PBOT crews reopen NW Cornell after clearing landslide

Crews clear trees from NW Cornell Rd

Crews from Portland Parks & Recreation's clear trees from the NW Cornell landslide, working with PBOT crews who clear the road and engineers who assess the site for safety. (Photo by Portland Bureau of Transportation.)

(4:35 p.m. Jan. 23, 2017) The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) advises the traveling public that NW Cornell has been reopened after crews cleared a landslide that was reported on Sunday evening between the Audubon Society of Portland and NW 30th Avenue.

PBOT engineers and maintenance crews, and tree crews from Portland Parks & Recreation worked to clear the site and make it safe.

It will take weeks for PBOT maintenance crews to clean up debris and damage to the public right of way after recent snow and ice storms and freezing temperatures. Crews are filling potholes, patching water main breaks, cleaning up landslides and rockslides, removing debris from drainage ditches and sweeping gravel from city streets. Tree crews from Parks & Recreation continue to assess hundreds of tree emergencies and clear debris after several winter storms.

VIDEO: See a video of a large tree being felled and tumbling down the NW Cornell landslide at PBOT's YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TtPA-sb_giQ

Clearing trees from NW Cornell landslide

Crews from Portland Parks & Recreation's clear trees from the NW Cornell landslide, working with PBOT crews who clear the road and engineers who assess the site for safety. (Photo by Portland Bureau of Transportation.)

The NW Cornell landslide undercut several large trees in the area, so foresters were called in to remove those trees to prevent them from causing a safety risk for the public.

PBOT crews removed four dump truck loads of branches, dirt and rock from the area, including some debris from a smaller nearby landslide that could have caused drainage problems in rainstorms. During the street closure, PBOT crews also swept gravel that had accumulated after recent storm events.

There is no update on last week's landslide on West Burnside. That road was reopened on Friday, after it had been closed on Wednesday evening. West Burnside is open for travel with one lane in each direction, down from a normal two lanes westbound and one lane eastbound.

Report road hazards that block a travel lane or bike lane to PBOT maintenance dispatchers at 503-823-1700 or email PDXroads@portlandoregon.gov 

Landslide stripped soil undercutting trees

A landslide stripped a hillside next to NW Cornell Road on Sunday Jan. 22, 2016, and undercut some large trees in the area. (Photo by Portland Bureau of Transportation.)

### 

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. Learn more at www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation

News Blog: 10 years after Portland Aerial Tram's debut, Portlanders are still discovering the thrilling ride, breathtaking views

10 yr anniversary logo

News Blog: 10 years after Portland Aerial Tram's debut, Portlanders are still discovering the thrilling ride, breathtaking views

Tram St HelensMount St. Helens in view over downtown Portland and the Willamette River during a ride on the Portland Aerial Tram. Photo by Brian Armada.

By Brian Armada

Despite being in Portland for the better part of four years, it is to my shame that I had never taken the Aerial Tram! I had definitely seen it every time that I ventured into the South Waterfront, taking its commuters 500 feet into the air as it traverses 3,300 feet towards OHSU, but never once took it myself.

That was the case until a few weeks ago when I took the aerial commute to OHSU accompanied by Rich Eisenhauer, PBOT’s SDC Program and Portland Aerial Tram Manager. Rich explained that the Aerial Tram is one of only two commuter aerial trams in the United States, the other being in New York City’s Roosevelt Island. Portland’s Tram is owned by the Portland Bureau of Transportation and operated in partnership with OHSU.

Tram selfie

I got on the Aerial Tram at the South Waterfront terminal and was surprised by how spacious the Tram itself was – even with all the people inside, it felt very comfortable. The windows inside are huge and offer amazing views from every angle. The tram started moving slowly and smoothly at first, but gradually increased its speed. As I ascended, the tram itself was very steady and the ride felt like the climb right before a rollercoaster drop. Once I could see the OHSU terminal clearly, I felt the need to pop my ears!

I got off the tram at OHSU and walked over to the observation deck, to take a couple pictures and I could not believe the view. The day was very clear and I was able to see Mount Hood, Mount St. Helens and Mount Tabor, along with downtown Portland and the South Waterfront. At the observation deck there’s a plaque that has a picture of Portland from 100 years ago and one of contemporary Portland – it was stunning to look down at that and see how the city has changed and then look back at the city and see how it is still changing.

The ride down from OHSU to the South Waterfront is much more fun, the Tram accelerates slightly as it descends and the drop at the terminal is a very satisfying payoff. The whole way down I could see Mount Hood right in between the South Waterfront’s towering structures. I could definitely get used to this as a daily commute!

I also learned that the Tram carries over 9,000 riders a day and sometimes even more during inclement weather. Rich from PBOT explained that although people may think the Tram is susceptible to snowy conditions “these things were made for traversing the alps!” and are considerably resilient.

The Tram’s 10-year anniversary is coming up and I can certainly see the need to celebrate the service it provides - I’m just looking for excuses to take it again! 

Brian Armada is a senior studying economics at Reed College in Southeast Portland.


tram south waterfront

CELEBRATE TEN YEARS OF THE TRAM!

Portland Tram 10th Anniversary Community Day

Saturday, January 28, 2017, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The Portland Aerial Tram is hosting a special Community and Family Day to celebrate ten years of service. 

Activities for the kids, historical displays, presentations on the construction of the Tram and the future of South Waterfront, samples from local restaurants and more. We'll also have guided walks, expert talks and special Tram Anniversary memorabilia. Join us for this once-in-a-decade event!

All activities are free and open to the public.

The Tram runs 9:00 am to 5:00 pm; Children 6 and under can ride the Tram free with an adult.

Visit gobytram.com for details.

News Release: The Portland Tram turns 10! Elected leaders, OHSU officials and community members celebrate the Portland transportation icon's 10th Anniversary

Portland Tram

News Release: 

The Portland Tram turns 10! Elected leaders, OHSU officials and community members celebrate the Portland transportation icon's 10th Anniversary

(Jan. 27, 2017) U.S. Rep. Earl Blumenauer joined Mayor Ted Wheeler, Transportation Commissioner Dan Saltzman, former U.S. Rep. Darlene Hooley, officials with Oregon Health & Science University and Doppelmayr USA and community members to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Portland Aerial Tram.

Since it launched Jan. 28, 2007, the tram has been a catalyst for the local economy by enabling the growth of housing and bioscience jobs on a former brownfield site. The tram provides an essential public transit link between OHSU’s Marquam Hill and South Waterfront campuses.

“The Portland Aerial Tram is the quintessential example of the private and public sector working together to build a vibrant, livable community,” Blumenauer said. “Thanks to the tram, Portland has added thousands of jobs and created a world-class bioscience education hub with OHSU. The tram has been essential to the transformation of South Waterfront into a vibrant, livable community where people can live without a car because they can walk, bike, or go by streetcar or tram.”

Before the tram was opened, the South Waterfront area was a little used industrial area, cut off from the rest of the region by Interstate 5.

“The Portland Aerial Tram has become an iconic symbol of our city’s long tradition of transportation innovation,” Wheeler said. “It has made our economy stronger by helping us grow the downtown area and grow the bioscience jobs and talent of the future. This anniversary offers all Portlanders a chance to reflect on what a tremendous accomplishment it was to build the tram and how much it has done for Portland.”

Since opening, the tram has provided 16 million trips, with about 9,500 trips a day on an average weekday.

“The tram has become vital to Portland’s transportation system,” said Saltzman, who oversees the Portland Bureau of Transportation. “It has provided millions of trips in the last decade. In the recent snow and ice storms, the tram was the only link in the region’s transportation system that did not suffer any service disruptions. In fact, the tram expanded its hours of operation, offering service around the clock, and becoming a true lifeline for people to reach OSHU, the VA and Shriners’ hospitals.”

“When I realized that the Gibbs Neighborhood would not have access to the Tram or the bike path or the river, I went to work to find the funds so that we could build a bridge over the 13 lanes of traffic and connect them to their neighbors and public services,” said former Congresswoman Darlene Hooley.

“The Portland Aerial Tram has been a key component in the development of the South Waterfront and the continued growth of OHSU as a major health and science research university. Since the Tram opened 10 years ago, OHSU has added more than 4,000 jobs and invested more than $1 billion in new buildings in the South Waterfront. Without the rapid and reliable transportation provided by the Tram, OHSU’s expansion to the South Waterfront would not have been possible,” said Brian Newman, OHSU vice president for campus development and administration.

The dignitaries were joined by dozens of people who use the tram on a daily basis. They gathered at the Center for Health & Healing, the first OHSU medical building in South Waterfront, located next to the lower tram landing.

As part of the celebration, the Portland Aerial Tram will throw a Community Day Celebration on Saturday, January 28th, featuring family activities, historical displays, and presentations on the construction of the Tram and the future of South Waterfront. Members of the public will also be able to participate in guided walks, enjoy expert talks and view special Tram Anniversary memorabilia. The event is free and takes place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Tram facts

  • 16 million total rides since opening
  • 2.1 million rides in 2016
  • 9,500 average daily rides M-F
  • $2.4 million annual operating budget
  • Tram employees: 18
  • Trip length: 3,300 feet, rising 500 feet in elevation
  • Travel speed: 22 miles per hour and up

 

  Since the Portland Aerial Tram opened 10 years ago, OHSU has:

  • Added more than 4,000 jobs in Portland
  • Invested more than $1 billion in new buildings in South Waterfront

 

###