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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

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Media Relations

Dylan Rivera

Public Information Officer


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 

Street Closures and Construction News

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Portland Mall project to pave Jefferson, Columbia, Clay

During the week of October 13, crews for the Portland Mall project will be excavating, reconstructing and paving SW Jefferson, Columbia and Clay streets between 5th and 6th avenues.  One lane will be closed at a time while the roadway is excavated and reconstructed.  Monday the crews will be excavating between 5th and 6th on the north side of Clay and Columbia and the south side of Jefferson.  Tuesday they will pave these areas.  Wednesday they will excavate the opposite sides of the street and pave the areas back the same day.  Work hours will be between 7:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. each day.


Street closures planned over the weekend

On Saturday, October 11, there will be two closures to set cranes to lift to adjacent construction projects.  One will be SW Park Avenue between Yamhill and Morrison, from 6:30 a.m. until 2:00 p.m.  The other will be on NW Glisan (westbound) between NW 3rd and 4th avenues, beginning at 7:00 a.m. on Saturday the 11th and continuing until 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, October 12.  Also on Saturday and Sunday, October 11 and 12, SW 2nd Ave between Market and Clay streets will be closed each day from 7:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m., for roof repairs to Keller Auditorium.  The west sidewalk of SW 2nd also will be closed to pedestrians.



Multnomah County will work on Hawthorne Bridge Main Street Ramp

Pavement crews from Multnomah County will be crack sealing the pavement on the Main Street ramp at the west end of the Hawthorne Bridge, most likely on Thursday, October 16, although the date could change due to weather.  Work will take place after 9:00 a.m. and end before 3:00 p.m.  Only one travel lane will be open on the ramp during the work.  To move traffic more smoothly, a flagger will be stationed at the intersection of SW Main and 1st, and the signal will be turned off.


Loo, loo, skip to my loo

Work is expected to begin during the week of October 13 on a new public loo to be located on NW Glisan at 5th Avenue.  The new loo will be placed in a curb extension to be constructed in the current pull-out area on the north side of NW 5th.  Some sidewalk restrictions and intermittent right lane closures may be needed for the construction.


AIDS Walk Portland will briefly close SW Broadway, Salmon this Sunday

More than 10,000 walkers will come together on Sunday, October 12 at 9:00 a.m. in Pioneer Courthouse Square for AIDS Walk Portland, with the goal of raising $350,000 for services provided by Cascade AIDS Project to prevent new HIV infections, care for people affected and infected by HIV/AIDS, educate communities to eliminate stigma and shame and advocate for immediate action in combating the pandemic.  Beginning at 10:00 a.m., Portland police will escort the walkers from Pioneer Square to Waterfront Park via Broadway and Salmon Street; after that, walkers are on paths or sidewalks.  The event ends at noon.


Bailout Bill Begets Bicycle Benefits

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Law allows employer re-imbursements of bike commuting costs

You might have read that the bailout of the distressed financial sector was sweetened with a number of additional provisions, including language of Congressman Earl Blumenaeur's bicycle commuter bill.


According to our fellow transportation eggheads at the University of South Florida, the Emegency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 (H.R. 1424) expands transportation fringe benefits (Section 132(f) that allows up to a $20.00 per month for tax deduction for bicycle commuters.


photo courtesy of Jonathan Maus:

The act allows employers to make tax deductible reimbursements of bicycle commute expenses (it doesn't require anything your employer to do anything). For example, the tax code already allows employers to reimburse employees of parking and public transit fare costs as tax deductible expenses. Now, if you buy a bicycle for commuting (and you actually commute with it), it appears that your employer could choose to reimburse up to $240 a year of those costs: you get the cost of the commuter bike reduced and your employer reduces its tax liability.


The bill's language will still need to be interpreted by the IRS.

You may view HR 1424 here:


See IRS' Taxable Fringe Benefits Guide for more information about Qualified Transportation Fringe Benefit Guide: 


Portland Marathon Storms Into Town Sunday

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The 38th annual Portland Marathon will be run on Sunday, October 5, 2008.  Traffic will be affected throughout the day, and some major streets and bridges will be closed from 6:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. or later.  

SW Naito Parkway, SW Salmon Street, SW 3rd and 4th avenues, SW Broadway, NW Davis Street, NW Lovejoy, NW 9th Avenue, NW Raleigh and Thurman streets, NW Wardway, NW St. Helens Road, N Willamette Boulevard, N Greeley, and N Interstate are all impacted by the race to a significant degree throughout the day and should be avoided.

The Broadway Bridge will be CLOSED to westbound traffic from 10:00 a.m. to noon, and the Morrison Bridge will be CLOSED to westbound traffic between 6:00 and 8:45am. The Burnside Bridge will be CLOSED to westbound traffic between 6:30 and 9:00 a.m. The St. Johns Bridge will have one lane open to traffic in each direction.

TriMet routes will also be affected.  Click here for more on TriMet detours.

The Marathon Course route is closed to all unauthorized vehicular and bicycle traffic.  For more detailed information on the street closures, or to download a PDF map of the traffic control plan for this event, visit the Keep Portland Moving special events page.

Pedestrian Advocates Wanted

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Portland's Pedestrian Advisory Committee looking for new members

The City of Portland's Pedestrian Advisory Committee, a group of citizens that meet montly to advise the Office of Transportation and City Council on pedestrian issues city-wide, are looking for a few good members. 

To read the notice and learn more, click here.

The Post-Carbon Future: Portland?

The Sacramento Bee ran an interesting article this past Sunday entitled "The Conversation: How do we become less dependent?" a rumination on California's escape from auto-dependency.

The author, Daniel Lerch, who lives here in Portland writes: "Trying to make our communities less car-dependent simply by adding more buses, streetcars and light rail is like trying to make a bowl of chicken soup vegan simply by picking the chicken out. It's just not that simple," he explains.  The way our communities are built plays a vital role, too.

Lerch then points to Portland as a model for other cities:

Portland, Ore., remains the best American example of this fundamental rethinking, with its vibrant downtown, pioneering light-rail system and strict constraints on suburban sprawl. Portland achieved its successes not by executive fiat, but through decades of work by countless elected officials, planners and community members to forge regional agreement on land use and transportation issues. Car independence has been a central part of the Portland vision, and today the city boasts some of the nation's highest rates of walking and bicycling, despite miserable weather half the year.

Portland wasn't always the walkable, bikeable place it is today.  Lerch alludes to the long-term process the city continues to work through to change the built environment and our transportation system.  The most iconic milepost might be our waterfront's transformation in the 1970s, as this photo depicts.