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Portland Bureau of Transportation

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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 


News Advisory: Commissioner Steve Novick kicks off three months of Better Naito

better naito(May 2, 2016) Commissioner Steve Novick and Portland Bureau of Transportation Director Leah Treat will join representatives of Better Block PDX and the festivals and events participating in Better Naito at Salmon Springs Fountain to kick off three months of safer access to Waterfront Park. Commissioner Novick, Director Treat, Rose Festival Association CEO Jeff Curtis and Better Block PDX volunteer Gwen Shaw will give remarks about the importance of Better Naito for Portlanders. Following opening remarks, participants will walk, bike and roll on Better Naito in a demonstration of how the lane conversion operates as a two-way walking and biking facility.

 

WHO:

Commissioner Steve Novick, City of Portland

Leah Treat, Director, Portland Bureau of Transportation

Jeff Curtis, CEO, Rose Festival Association

Gwen Shaw, Volunteer, Better Block PDX

 

WHAT: Commissioner Steve Novick, Portland Bureau of Transportation Director Leah Treat and representatives from Better Block PDX and seven festivals and events taking place at Tom McCall Waterfront Park this summer will gather at Salmon Street Springs to inaugurate the 2016 Better Naito Pilot Project.

WHEN:  May 3, 2016 at 10:30 a.m.

WHERE:  Salmon Street Springs Fountain – 1000 SW Naito Parkway, Portland, OR 97204

VISUALS:  Speakers from PBOT, the Rose Festival Association, Better Block PDX and representatives from seven different festivals and events happening this summer at Waterfront Park. Event participants will walk, bike and roll on the fully installed and operating Better Naito following opening remarks.

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News Release: Naito Parkway is Transformed: One northbound lane will be opened to two-way walking and biking for next three months

Naito Parkway is Transformed:
One northbound lane will be opened to two-way walking and biking for next three months

 

Will provide a safe place to travel for the 15,000 people per day attending events at Waterfront Park during festival season 

 

The largest temporary street transformation in America – both in size and duration

 

For public safety, speed limit on Naito Parkway will be reduced to 20 mph for the project’s duration

 

(May 3, 2016)  – Commissioner Steve Novick, Portland Bureau of Transportation Director Leah Treat and representatives from Better Block PDX and seven festivals and events taking place at Tom McCall Waterfront Park this summer gathered at Salmon Street Springs this morning to inaugurate the 2016 Better Naito Pilot Project.

The Better Naito Pilot Project, a partnership between Better Block PDX and the Portland Bureau of Transportation, creates a safe way for people to get to and around Portland’s summer of festivals at Waterfront Park. The project was first piloted in June 2015 during the two weeks of Rose Festival City Fair and returned for the Oregon Brewers Festival the same year.

This year’s iteration of Better Naito, which will open one northbound motor vehicle lane to a two-way walking and biking facility nearly a mile long, is the largest temporary street transformation to take place in America in both its size and duration.

Data collected during the 2015 Better Naito found that during non-peak hours, motor vehicle travel times were not significantly affected. Morning and evening rush-hour motor vehicle traffic was delayed by less than a minute throughout the area. The report by Better Block PDX can be found on the Better Naito website: www.betternaito.com

As a result of Better Naito 2015’s success, the Portland Bureau of Transportation is granting Community Event Permits to the festivals and events taking place at Waterfront Park. The organizations will implement placemaking features along the Better Naito corridor and create a physically separated space for people walking and biking in order to help everyone safely and comfortably access the waterfront.

“Safety is the highest priority behind every PBOT project. After a successful pilot period last year during the Portland Rose Festival, I am delighted that Better Naito will return for the safety of the thousands of people biking and walking to the waterfront this summer,” said Commissioner Steve Novick, who oversees PBOT.

Transportation Director Leah Treat said, “Summer in Portland is all about people getting outside and taking to the streets to experience our city in creative and fun ways. Better Naito exemplifies that spirit and we are thrilled to have it for three months this year.”

“Better Naito is a living demonstration of how we can make Naito Parkway a better space for people,” said Gwen Shaw, a Better Block PDX Volunteer, “The design is temporary, but the concept is permanent.”

The Portland Rose Festival was the first organization to pilot Better Naito in 2015 and is returning again as a major supporter of the project. Rose Festival’s CityFair serves 25,000 to 30,000 people daily and generates more than $100,000 per day in revenue. As part of its placemaking within the Better Naito space, the organization will be creating a “living room experience” every Saturday and Sunday of CityFair, offering entertainment and activities in the space, such as chalk painting for kids.

"The Better Naito Project offers the Rose Festival safer and more inviting options for visitors to enter the CityFair and RoZone events at Waterfront Park," said Jeff Curtis, Portland Rose Festival Foundation CEO. "Pedestrian access along Naito will be much more protected and comfortable for families during all our opening hours."  

A special edition of Better Naito will be added from July 1 to July 4 to accommodate people traveling to or around the Waterfront Blues Festival at the southern end of Waterfront Park. Owned and operated by Oregon Food Bank, the Waterfront Blues Festival is Oregon Food Banks’s single largest fundraising event and the largest blues fest west of the Mississippi. Since 1988, the festival has raised over $10 million and 2 million pounds of food for individuals in Oregon and SW Washington.

Said Oregon Food Bank’s CEO, Susannah Morgan, “As the owner-operator of Waterfront Blues Festival, Oregon Food Bank supports this plan because it promotes public safety and enhances access to Portland’s waterfront events for everyone.”

Portland’s new bike share program, BIKETOWN, will also participate in Better Naito from July 8 to 25. The program will use space on Better Naito as an open-air office to showcase its smart bikes and for people to sign up for membership.

“Well-designed, inviting infrastructure is a great complement to bike share systems,” said Dorothy Mitchell, general manager of BIKETOWN. “We’re pleased to support Better Naito, which will make our waterfront a great place to walk and ride this summer. We’ll be there offering a sneak preview of BIKETOWN and letting folks take our new orange bikes for a spin."

From May 2 to July 31, 24 hours a day, one northbound travel lane of SW Naito Parkway from SW Main Street to NW Davis Street (an almost 1-mile-long distance) will be opened for two-way walking and bicycling. Additionally, from July 1 to July 4 ONLY, the lane conversion will extend from SW Clay Street to NW Davis Street to accommodate people traveling to or around the Waterfront Blues Festival at the southern end of Waterfront Park. As part of the lane conversion and to make Naito Parkway safer for all users, the speed limit will be reduced to 20 mph for the length of the project.

The events and organizations participating in Better Naito 2016 are: Cinco de Mayo, Better Block PDX, the Portland Rose Festival, Portland Pride, the Waterfront Blues Festival, BIKETOWN Portland Bike Share and the Oregon Brewers Festival. Travel Portland, the Portland Police Bureau, Portland Fire & Rescue and Portland Parks & Recreation are also Better Naito partners.

Summer events at Waterfront Park have become so popular that they draw, on average, 15,000 people a day to the waterfront. Better Naito follows in the historic footsteps of other Portland public space transformations in the same location. In 1974, Portland demolished the Harbor Drive expressway and replaced it with Waterfront Park - 36 acres of tree-filled public space voted one of America’s ten greatest public spaces by the American Planning Association in 2012.

All participating Better Naito organizations have obtained Community Event permits from PBOT which require them to implement placemaking features along the Better Naito corridor and to create a physically separated space for people walking and biking in order to help everyone safely and comfortably access the waterfront.

View photos from the event on PBOT's Flickr page: www.flickr.com/photos/pbotinfo/albums/72157667925388915

The public is encouraged to comment on this pilot project by email, Twitter and a phone voicemail box set up to receive comments.

Twitter: #BetterNaito

Email: NaitoParkway@portlandoregon.gov

Web: www.betternaito.com

Leave a message by phone: (503) 823-4321

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About the 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. www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation

About Better Block PDX:

In the tradition of the Better Block Project, the open source Better Block PDX has come together to create inviting and interactive places that challenge the notion that streets are only for cars. Join us as we gather people to experience their city in attractive, engaging new ways long thought impossible. www.betterblockpdx.org

 

About Cinco De Mayo:

Portland's Cinco de Mayo Fiesta is the largest multicultural festival in the state of Oregon and is held at beautiful Tom McCall Waterfront Park in downtown Portland, Oregon. Now in its 32nd year, the festival is presented by the Portland Guadalajara Sister City Association (PGSCA). www.cincodemayo.org

 

About the Rose Festival:

The opening day of the Portland Rose Festival is one of the first signs of summer. People come from far and wide to revel in the variety of culturally rich events happening during the months of May and June. Whether you are craving cotton candy and a spin on the CityFair Ferris wheel, want to dance your cares away at a RoZone Concert, or bask in the sun as amazing, all-floral floats drift through downtown in the Grand Floral Parade, there is an event for festival lovers of any age.

Today's major Rose Festival events continue to offer myriad opportunities to congregate and celebrate. They include Rose Festival CityFair, an urban entertainment fair and carnival and three distinctive parades; the Starlight Parade, (300,000 attendance) a fun and funky nighttime event; the Junior Parade, (50,000 attendance) a kid-centric procession; and the Rose Festival's cornerstone, the Grand Floral Parade, which brings 400,000 to the streets of Portland, many of whom camp overnight to await the annual extravaganza. CityFair serves 25,000 to 30,000 people daily generating more than $100,000 per day in revenue. It is estimated that the Rose Festival generated $97.25 in direct spending by each visitor that attends the Portland Rose Festival. www.rosefestival.org

About Portland Pride:

The Portland Pride festival is the single, largest visibility avenue for the region’s LGBTQ community organizations and businesses, where they can attract new supporters and clients, increase their volunteer base, and raise much needed funds. In addition, the festival attracts thousands of visitors to Portland each year, bringing significant revenue to the local LGBTQ business community and to the city, as a whole. www.pridenw.org

About the Waterfront Blues Festival:

The Waterfront Blues Festival is a unique, internationally recognized music festival focused on the blues. Owned and operated by Oregon Food Bank, the Waterfront Blues Fest is OFB’s single largest fundraising event and the largest blues fest west of the Mississippi. Since 1988, the festival has raised over $10 million and 2 million pounds of food for our neighbors in need. If hunger were a disease, it would be considered an epidemic because 1 in 5 individuals in Oregon and Southwest Washington struggle with getting enough to eat. Oregon Food Bank is grateful to our sponsors, longtime attendees and more than 2,000 volunteers for making this event possible.  www.waterfrontbluesfest.com

About BIKETOWN Portland Bike Share:

BIKETOWN bike share is a public bike rental system for short trips from point A to point B for a small fee. It's like transit and bike rental got together to give residents and visitors a convenient and fun transportation option. BIKETOWN, a partnership between the Portland Bureau of Transportation and Nike, will offer 1000 bikes, at 100 stations, giving residents and visitors an active, easy and accessible way to get around Portland. BIKETOWN launches this July. www.BIKETOWNpdx.com

About Oregon Brewers Festival:

One of the nation's longest-running craft beer festivals, the Oregon Brewers Festival is considered a destination, and 80,000 craft beer lovers annually make the pilgrimage to Beervana to drink up what the festival has to offer. www.oregonbrewfest.com

News Advisory: Representatives from the Portland Bureau of Transportation, Multnomah County Library and Metro celebrate new “Bike to Books” Bike Month initiative

(May 5, 2016) To mark National Bike Month, Transportation Commissioner Steve Novick and Portland Transportation Director Leah Treat will join Metro Councilor Bob Stacey, Multnomah County Commissioner Judy Shiprack and Multnomah County Library Director Vailey Oehlke at Holgate Library to celebrate “Bike to Books” - a new, bike-friendly collaboration between the Portland Bureau of Transportation and Multnomah County Library. As part of the collaboration between the library and the Portland Bureau of Transportation, every child who bikes to any Multnomah County library branch will receive a free bike light provided by Metro. In addition, PBOT will be offering free resources to families on safe biking with kids and maps of bike routes throughout the city. Libraries around the city are also offering special “bike-themed” story times for visitors as part of Bike Month.

 

WHO:

Commissioner Steve Novick, City of Portland

Leah Treat, Director, Portland Bureau of Transportation

Metro Councilor Bob Stacey

Multnomah County Commissioner Judy Shiprack

Multnomah County Library Director Vailey Oehlke

 

WHAT: Transportation Commissioner Steve Novick and Portland Transportation Director Leah Treat will join Metro Councilor Bob Stacey, Multnomah County Commissioner Judy Shiprack and Multnomah County Library Director Vailey Oehlke at Holgate Library to celebrate a new Bike Month initiative by the three agencies. Following their remarks, there will be a bike-themed storytime at Holgate Library.

WHEN:  May 6, 2016 at 10:30 a.m.

WHERE: Holgate Library – 7905 SE Holgate Boulevard, Portland, OR 97206

VISUALS: Speakers from PBOT, Metro, Multnomah County and Multnomah County Library followed by a special bike-themed storytime for Portland’s youngest readers and readers-to-be.

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News Release: Bike to Books: The Portland Bureau of Transportation, Metro and Multnomah County Library team up for special Bike Month activities for readers on bikes

(May 6, 2016)  – To mark National Bike Month, Transportation Commissioner Steve Novick and Portland Transportation Director Leah Treat joined Metro Councilor Bob Stacey, Multnomah County Commissioner Judy Shiprack and Multnomah County Library Director Vailey Oehlke at Holgate Library to celebrate “Bike to Books” - a new, bike-friendly collaboration between the Portland Bureau of Transportation and Multnomah County Library.

As part of the collaboration between the library and the Portland Bureau of Transportation, every child who bikes to any Multnomah County library branch will receive a free bike light provided by Metro (until supplies run out). In addition, PBOT will be offering free resources to families on safe biking with kids and maps of bike routes throughout the city. Libraries around the city are also offering special “bike-themed” story times for visitors as part of Bike Month.

Books and bikes are two pillars of Portland culture. Multnomah County Library is the third-busiest public library in the United States, according to the Public Library Data Service, and has the hardest-working collection of library materials among large libraries in the U.S. In addition, Portland’s young readers bike to school in record numbers. Today, thanks to the Portland Bureau of Transportation’s Safe Routes to School Program, 43.6 percent of trips to school in Portland are on foot or by bike – the highest in the nation.

This year, PBOT is focusing its Bike Month efforts on getting families to bike more. Riding your bike to school or to the library can be simple, efficient and, most importantly, fun. Research has shown that biking to school has learning benefits for kids as well. A 2012 Danish study found that kids who biked or walked to school, rather than traveling by car or public transportation, performed measurably better on tasks demanding concentration, such as solving puzzles, and that the effects lasted for up to four hours after they got to school. Biking as a family is wonderful, healthy outdoor activity the entire family can enjoy together.

“I’m excited about this collaboration between PBOT, Metro and Multnomah County Library to show kids how easy it can be to bike to the library and access the free resources and activities they offer throughout the years,” said Portland Transportation Commissioner Steve Novick.

“I’m so pleased to be joined here today by Commissioner Novick and Councilor Stacey, along with PBOT and the library,” said Multnomah County Commissioner Judy Shiprack.  “Today, we’re bringing together three public service organizations to help create and enhance safe, healthy and thriving communities. I am grateful to the City of Portland and Metro for their contributions to this work.”

“Biking as a family lets you spend more quality time together, stay healthy and experience your community in a more personal way. Metro is dedicated to ensuring that families throughout the Portland region have safe, practical ways to ride bikes to the library, school, work or just for fun. We are excited to partner with the City of Portland and Multnomah County Libraries to increase safety for kids and parents riding bikes," said Metro Councilor Bob Stacey.

“As community hubs, libraries are all about connecting people with resources, knowledge and friendly personal assistance,” said Director of Libraries Vailey Oehlke. “I’m proud to join our partners today at Holgate Library to kick off this new effort. I’m also looking forward to riding my bike and invite everyone to take a spin to your local library and get one of these cool bike lights.”

“These regional partnerships that create incentives for people of all ages to give biking a try are essential as we work to build a bike system that accommodates riders from age eight to eighty,” said PBOT Director Leah Treat. “Portland has been celebrating Bike Month since the 1970’s and we are proud to be a bicycling leader. Showing our youngest riders how fun and easy biking can be will help us continue to grow our bike-friendly city.”

Portland Bike Month runs throughout the month of May with events happening across the city sponsored by multiple organizations to encourage people of all ages to get on their bike and enjoy the spring sunshine and hundreds of miles of bike lanes and neighborhood greenways in the city of Portland.

Information about Bike Month events hosted by the Portland Bureau of Transportation can be found at:www.pdxbikemonth.com

About biking in Portland:

  • In Portland, 7.2% of commuters go by bike. This is the highest percentage of bike commuters for a large American city and means more than 17,000 workers in Portland choose to bicycle. Nationally, 0.5% of commuters bicycle. In addition, 238% more people biked to work in 2010 than in 2000.
  • 350 miles of bikeways are on the ground in Portland, with more than 50 more miles funded to be installed in the next few years. The 319 miles are of three types:

o   77 miles of Neighborhood Greenways

o   188 miles of bike lanes, and

o   85 miles of paths.

  • Over 100 schools are served by Portland’s Safe Routes to School Program, with services that include:

o   31 traffic engineering plans designed for schools to make pick-up and drop-off safer, more efficient and less polluted and

o   40 education programs operating at schools to teach kids about traffic safety and how to be safe pedestrians and bicyclists when actively going to school.

For more facts about biking in Portland, visit: https://www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/article/407660

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About the 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. To learn more about PBOT’s efforts to encourage bicycle use and make safer routes for bicycling, see the bureau’s Active Transportation web site.

 

About Multnomah County Library:

Multnomah County Library is the oldest public library west of the Mississippi River, with a history that reaches back to 1864. Today, Central Library and the other 18 neighborhood libraries that make up the library system house nearly 900 computer stations for the public and a collection of two million books and other library materials. As Oregon's largest public library, Multnomah County Library serves nearly one-fifth of the state's population with a wide variety of programs and services. Learn more at www.multcolib.org.

 

About Metro:

Metro works with communities, businesses and residents in the Portland metropolitan area to chart a wise course for the future while protecting the things we love about this place. Learn more at www.oregonmetro.gov.

 

News Advisory: Mayor Hales, Commissioner Novick, Director Treat tour Legacy Emanuel Medical Center, a Level 1 trauma center, and host Vision Zero Listening Session

(May 6, 2016) Portland Mayor Charlie Hales, Commissioner Steve Novick and Portland Transportation Director Leah Treat will tour Legacy Emanuel Medical Center, a Level 1 trauma center, on Monday, for a firsthand look at the burden that traffic crashes place on our healthcare system, our fellow Portlanders and the cost to our society. Following the tour, the Vision Zero Executive Committee – including state Sens. Michael Dembrow and Diane Rosenbaum and state Rep. Alissa Keny-Guyer and Metro Councilor Bob Stacey – will be briefed on findings and proposed actions for the City of Portland’s Vision Zero traffic safety efforts that will be considered by City Council. The committee will conduct a Listening Session to hear from the public about traffic safety concerns.

Vision Zero Portland logoWHO:                   Mayor Charlie Hales, City of Portland

Commissioner Steve Novick, City of Portland

Leah Treat, Director, Portland Bureau of Transportation

Lori Morgan, MD, Legacy Emanuel Chief Administrative Officer

 

Vision Zero Media Briefing (news media only)

5 to 5:15 p.m., Monday May 9, 2016

Legacy Emanuel Medical Center – Outside of the Adult Emergency Room entrance

2810 N. Gantenbein Ave., Portland, OR 97227

(To reach the Adult Emergency, enter campus from N. Kerby Ave. )

 

Vision Zero Listening Session (public session)

5:15 to 6:30 p.m., Monday May 9, 2016

Legacy Emanuel Medical Center, Lorenzen Conference Center, 2801 N. Gantenbein Ave., Portland, OR 97227, Rooms 1700/1702

VISUALS:             Mayor Hales, Commissioner Novick and Director Treat, and will brief the media on the trauma center tour and Vision Zero, standing at the Adult Emergency Room entrance. Listening Session, including public comments, to follow at Lorenzen Conference Center.

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