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1120 SW Fifth Ave, Suite 800, Portland, OR 97204
Public Information Officer
Maintenance and repair work begin February 1 – use Better Naito for detour
(Jan. 11, 2019) Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R), in partnership with the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT), Bureau of Environmental Services (BES), and the Regional Arts and Culture Council (RACC), will be making safety, maintenance, and planting improvements to the popular Vera Katz Eastbank Esplanade.
Work will begin on February 1, 2019 to repair the section of the Eastbank Esplanade between the Steel Bridge and Hawthorne Bridge. PP&R will close this segment of the Esplanade to make the improvements and repairs. The trail will reopen to the public on April 1, 2019
WHAT: Vera Katz Eastbank Esplanade closed for repairs and improvements.
WHERE: Between the Steel Bridge and Hawthorne Bridge.
WHEN: Work begins February 1 with the trail reopening on April 1, 2019.
“The Eastbank Esplanade is treasured by Portlanders for both commuting and recreation,” says Parks Commissioner Nick Fish. “This long-planned project will improve safety and park amenities, replace invasive vegetation with native species, and restore our public art. I want to thank our partners at BES, PBOT, and RACC for working together on this important project.”
Project work will include:
Previously-scheduled events will not be affected by the closure. The trail will be opened and safe for the public during two special events:
Some repairs, including lighting, concrete work, and painting, are weather-dependent. Any work extending past April 1 will not affect the reopening date or public access to the Eastbank Esplanade.
PBOT and PP&R are pleased to announce that Better Naito will open on January 28, 2019 to provide a safe detour during the Eastbank Esplanade maintenance project. Better Naito provides the closest continuous connection between the Hawthorne and Steel bridges on the west side of the Willamette River.
This is the third year of the Council-approved, 5-year implementation of Better Naito. Like past years, PBOT will install plastic posts to separate one northbound motor vehicle lane on Naito Parkway between SW Main Street and NW Couch Street. There will also be a designated passenger drop off zone on SW Taylor Street to better accommodate people being dropped off by personal vehicles, taxis, and rideshares.
PP&R has placed signage noticing the upcoming closure on and near the affected portion of the Esplanade. The City will continue public involvement notifications and updates on the Eastbank Esplanade maintenance project throughout the closure. Thank you to all neighbors and visitors for their patience while we repair this well-used Portland pathway.
“Better Naito is once again proving its worth, this time as a safe and convenient alternate route for the thousands of people who walk and bike along the Eastbank Esplanade every day,” said Transportation Commissioner Chloe Eudaly. “It is also an important first step in the implementation of projects within the Central City in Motion Plan approved by City Council in November. Community members have requested quick implementation of the projects within the plan, and we are listening. I look forward to more progress in 2019, 2020 and beyond.”
Additional information about Better Naito can be found at www.betternaito.com
The Vera Katz Eastbank Esplanade is one of Portland’s iconic sites and pathways, both a beloved City park and a major bicycle and pedestrian thoroughfare running approximately 1.5 miles along the east bank of the Willamette River from the Hawthorne Bridge to the Steel Bridge. The City’s 2018-19 Adopted Budget includes $500,000 in one-time General Fund resources, plus $200,000 in ongoing funding for maintenance, to begin addressing the issues on the Esplanade and making safety and functional improvements.
According to PBOT, during summer months the Eastbank Esplanade sees approximately 2,400 daily bicycle trips (almost 500 during the two-hour peak) and approximately 1,200 daily walking trips. The SW Naito Corridor (including the Gov. Tom McCall Waterfront Park path) is one of Portland’s busiest bikeway corridors. In the summer of 2018 it attracted approximately 5,200 daily bicycle trips.
The Esplanade was named after Mayor Vera Katz in November 2004 to honor her vision and leadership for Portland - which included support for the construction of the esplanade. Along with the iconic bronze statue of Mayor Katz located just north of the Hawthorne Bridge, five other significant works of public art populate the esplanade as it makes its way to the Burnside Bridge.
Photos are courtesy of Portland Parks & Recreation and Portland Bureau of Transportation:
Raising awareness of pedestrian safety and Oregon traffic laws
(Jan. 18, 2019) – The Portland Bureau of Transportation and Portland Police Bureau will conduct a crosswalk safety education and enforcement action on Wednesday, Jan. 23, at the marked crossing on Northeast Glisan Street at Northeast 134th Place from noon to 1:30 p.m. to raise awareness of pedestrian safety and Oregon traffic laws. PBOT also reminds Portlanders to watch for people walking at all hours of the day or night.
Under Oregon law, EVERY intersection is a legal crosswalk, whether it is marked or unmarked. People driving must stop and stay stopped for people walking when the pedestrian is in the travel lane or the adjacent lane.
The crossing on Northeast Glisan at Northeast 134th Place has a marked crosswalk, median island and signage.
Portland Bureau of Transportation’s “East Glisan Street Update” will be implementing changes on Northeast Glisan between 102nd and 162nd avenues to enhance safety, reduce crash severity, and to allow residents to conveniently access schools, parks, transit, and economic opportunity by walking and biking. Specific changes at the Northeast 134th Place crossing will include a reconfiguration of travel lanes so people walking only need to cross one lane of auto traffic at a time. Construction and restriping to achieve the street reconfiguration is expected to be completed this summer. More information can be found on the project webpage: www.PortlandOregon.gov/transportation/EastGlisan.
Northeast Glisan, a Vision Zero designated high crash network street, had a total of 75 fatal and serious injury crashes in 2007-16, the most recent 10-year period for which data are available.
People driving can do their part by having more patience, driving at or below the posted speed, continuously scanning the environment looking for people walking and bicycling, and being ready to stop as needed.
Education and enforcement actions such as the Jan. 23 event are a key part of the City of Portland’s citywide effort to achieve, Vision Zero, the goal of eliminating all traffic fatalities and serious injuries.
Each crosswalk enforcement action involves a designated pedestrian crossing at a marked or unmarked crosswalk while police monitor how people driving, bicycling and walking adhere to traffic safety laws. Drivers who fail to stop for pedestrians in the crosswalk and pedestrians who fail to follow Oregon traffic laws may be issued a warning or citation. A Portland Bureau of Transportation staff member will serve as the designated pedestrian crossing the street during Wednesday’s action.
Crosswalk education and enforcement actions are an effective way to communicate traffic laws to people driving and walking. The transportation and police bureaus do education and enforcement actions in response to requests by community members, city traffic safety engineers, and Portland Police to educate the general public on the rules at marked and unmarked crossings.
Portland is committed to ending traffic violence in our communities. Through the Vision Zero program, the City of Portland and our partners are working to eliminate deaths and serious injuries on our streets.
More information and a map of the Gateway to Opportunity project area can be found on our website.
For more information about Vision Zero, or to request a community briefing or enforcement action in your area, email VisionZero@portlandoregon.gov or call Matt Ferris-Smith, program specialist, at 503-823-5831.
(Jan. 29, 2019) Bridgetown. That’s our city. In fact, the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) already manages 152 different bridges across the city – many of which are 75 to 100 years old, or older! As our city grows, PBOT is actively working to build new bridges or update old ones to better serve people walking, biking and driving. In 2019, the bureau will open one rebuilt bridge and begin construction on two new, highly anticipated bridges with a fourth bridge on the horizon. All of these will help connect neighborhoods and make it easier to get around Portland.
In December 2015, a severe record-breaking storm damaged the SE 122nd Avenue Bridge over Johnson Creek. Damage to the 57-year-old timber bridge was so extensive, it required a complete replacement. A new steel plate girder bridge will span the entire width of the creek to lower the risk of future storm damage. This new bridge will feature ADA-compliant sidewalks and safe access for pedestrians on both sides of the bridge. The bridge was also designed to blend into the natural beauty of the area, with leaves of grass decorating the railings.
PBOT is nearing completion and expects to open the bridge in early March 2019. The bureau thanks all nearby residents and businesses for their patience during the closure of this important crossing.
Sullivan’s Crossing is a walking and biking bridge that will provide a vital connection over Interstate 84 between the Central Eastside and Lloyd districts at NE Seventh Avenue. Design work is nearly complete and PBOT has contracted with Oregon-based HP Civil to oversee construction. HP Civil has extensive experience in bridge construction. A final contract will head to City Council for approval in June. PBOT expects the 18-month project to break ground August 2019 and open to the public in early 2021.
Rivergate Overcrossing is a new bridge over rail tracks on N Rivergate Boulevard. This new connection will provide access to several large businesses including Evraz Oregon Steel Mills. This $26 million bridge is funded through a Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant awarded to the Port of Portland in 2016 by the Federal Highway Administration.
PBOT is completing final designs and expects the project to begin construction in June 2019. The new Rivergate Overcrossing should be completed December 2020.
Although construction will not begin in 2019, stay tuned for updates on Flanders Crossing, a new walking and biking bridge that will connect NW Flanders over Interstate 405. Flanders Crossing will provide the residents of the Northwest and Pearl districts a more direct, safe crossing over I‐405. The new bridge will also provide a seismic-resilient route for emergency vehicles in the event of an earthquake.
In 2007, the city first identified NW Flanders Street (and its crossing over I-405) as a vital route with huge potential for walking and biking. Flanders Crossing was finally approved by City Council in 2017. Design is nearly complete. Construction should begin in late 2019 or early 2020.
Sign up for updates about these projects and other PBOT projects and programs at www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/subscribe.
(Jan. 31, 2019) Portland is known as a hub of transportation innovation, research and ideas. Over the past 12 years, the Portland Bureau of Transportation’s (PBOT) Bike Lunch and Learn series has helped Portlanders learn about the work of city staff and our partners in the community. This year we are adding more transportation topics and increasing our reach through a partnership with Portland State University’s (PSU) Transportation Research and Education Center’s Friday Transportation Seminar. There will also be a new day and time: Fridays at 11:30 a.m. Meetings will take place about every other month.
The PBOT Bike Lunch and Learn began in 2007 as a response to the huge interest in Portland’s 2006 Bike Summit, hosted by PBOT and PSU. The Lunch and Learn offered topics of interest to bicycle advocates, city staff and the general public. The popularity of the program over the years led to the bureau deciding to widen the range of topics covered and seek out a new space to accommodate the growing number of attendees.
The new Lunch and Learn series is modeled after PSU’s popular Traffic and Transportation Course, which has been sponsored by PBOT for the past 29 years. Each session dives deep into a specific transportation topic PBOT is currently working on and is presented by the bureau staff directly addressing the issue.
The new collaboration with PSU’s Transportation Research and Education Center (TREC) provides the series with a regular home in a beautiful, state-of-the-art meeting space in the Central City. Even better, TREC will offer online access to the sessions as a webinar – watch from anywhere! You can even pose questions online for the presenters to answer in real-time. If you miss a presentation, the video and slides from the talk will be available at TREC’s online archive.
On Friday, Feb. 1, our first session dives into a topic of lively discussion in Portland these days– the Shared E-Scooter Pilot. Briana Orr, PBOT’s E-Scooter Pilot Project Manager and John MacArthur, TREC’s Sustainable Transportation Program Manager will discuss the results of the first 120-day pilot and the city’s plans for a second pilot in 2019.
Join us at:
PSU Karl Miller Center
615 SW Harrison St., Room 465
Portland, OR 97201
To watch the talk online, register here.
If you come to the event in person feel free to bring your lunch – and a cup. We’ll have coffee and donuts provided for continued conversation after the presentation, from 12:30 to 1 p.m.
Additional topics to be covered in the coming months include:
Like PBOT’s Facebook page to stay updated on all upcoming events: www.facebook.com/pbotinfo
It’s time to get Winter Ready, PDX!
(Feb. 4, 2019) The National Weather Service has notified the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) of the potential for accumulating snow of up to 1 inch to create slick road conditions for this evening's rush hour commute, from 4 to 7 p.m. The Service also advises the public to expect freezing temperatures to produce black ice Monday night, lasting into Tuesday morning commute hours.
PBOT advises the public to be aware of forecasts, use caution, delay your travel to avoid traveling during forecast snow or ice. Consider public transit, and check trimet.org/alertsand portlandstreetcar.org for service alerts before you go.
Temperatures are expected to freeze overnight on Tuesday night as well, potentially freezing any moisture on the roads at that time. Monday night may reach a low of 28 degrees in Portland, with wet streets that may freeze. Tuesday night lows may reach 20 to 25 degrees, but with less moisture on area roadways, so less chance of icy conditions on Wednesday morning.
In icy conditions, PBOT strongly advises delaying travel if possible. If people must travel, PBOT recommends taking public transit.
PBOT also reminds property owners, tenants and businesses that they are responsible for clearing sidewalks of snow and ice. It is important that sidewalks are clear so that people who are walking to transit and people with disabilities can move about safely.
While the forecast is still unclear, there are some simple things all Portlanders can do to prepare themselves for winter weather.
Stay informed.Sign up at Public Alerts for emergency notifications from all regional agencies via text, email or phone. Go to PBOT’s Winter Weather Center to track real-time weather, traffic, road closures and plow information. Sign up for PBOT alerts via text or email.
Never abandon your vehicle in a travel lane. If you choose to drive and your vehicle loses traction, pull over into a shoulder or legal parking space. You can call for a tow truck and remain with your vehicle. Or you can leave your vehicle legally parked and walk carefully to a public transit stop or other safe place. Any vehicle creating a safety hazard is subject to citation, tow and impound. The cost of a citation and tow for abandoned vehicles preventing free passage (blocking a travel lane) is $201. Additional costs to store a towed vehicle longer than four hours is $27 per day.
At this time forecasts are changing and variable. Please monitor the weather forecast for both your home, your travel destination and your route, as road conditions could vary throughout the city beginning Sunday evening.
The City of Portland’s Snow and Ice Plan discourages private vehicle use and encourages public transit use instead. Plan ahead for your public transit commute by calling 503-238-RIDE (7433), visiting TriMet.org for bus and MAX light rail schedules and alerts or PortlandStreetcar.org for streetcar schedules and alerts. In snow and ice, plan for bus delays of 20 to 30 minutes. Know where your transit stops are before venturing out. PBOT provides tips for winter travel for people walking, biking or driving. Learn more at: https://www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/snow