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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 800, Portland, OR 97204

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Streets 2035

Allocating space in the right-of-way is not always straightforward

The public right-of-way (ROW) is the space between private parcels of lane: the street and the area along the street including sidewalks and curbs, both above and below the ground. It is increasingly crowded since it includes:

  • Transportation: buses, cars, bicycles, wheelchairs, walking, freight, scooters, and more
  • Utilities: stormwater management, sewers, water, electricity, natural gas, telecommunications and more
  • Trees and greenery
  • Places for community gathering and events

Current policies are clear for individual uses of the ROW (e.g. transit, trees, or water lines). For example, transit network classifications in the Transportation System Plan designate the highest priority streets for transit. And spacing requirements aim to ensure trees, water lines, and other infrastructure are not located too close to each other.

Limited space in the ROW, however, can make it difficult to adhere to all applicable policies in all situations. Case-by-case decisions to balance competing demands on the ROW can at times result in inconsistent application and missed opportunities for achieving citywide objectives - be they for moving people, moving goods, or for delivering essential utility services. We need a citywide framework that binds these various policies and guides decision-making for the ROW.

Multiple agencies have infrastructure in the right-of-way


Streets 2035 will create a citywide right-of-way framework

Streets 2035 aims to develop context-sensitive decision-making framework that guides space allocation in the right-of-way to:

  • Better achieve citywide and individual bureau goals
  • Reduce situations that require individual interpretation and inter-bureau negotiation
  • Increase certainty and clarity for people wishing to develop in and adjacent to the ROW
  • Create a consistent starting point for capital projects design development

 The project will put ROW policy and process into action, including:

  • A website to explain the ROW allocation decision-making framework
  • Graphics that illustrate the placement (separation/mixing of functions) and dimensions (minimum and preferred) of street elements in the ROW, in varying space constraints and land use contexts
  • Updated tools and processes for city staff who review development applications and plan capital projects
  • Updates to city code or administrative rules as needed to operationalize the decision-making framework

 


Project Schedule

 Project Schedule


Who is involved? 

The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) manages the ROW and is leading the Streets 2035 project, but it is not working alone. As established in the 2035 Comprehensive Plan, public rights-of-way provide multiple public services. This includes multimodal transportation access and movement, stormwater management, water distribution, private utilities, tree canopy, and community use. Throughout this effort, PBOT will consult with:

  • Other bureaus and partner agencies whose plans, policies and design standards influence the ROW
  • Private stakeholders such as utility companies, developers, and others whose operations rely on the ROW

Technical Advisory Group (TAG)

  • Matt Berkow (Project Manager)
  • Teresa Montalvo (Development, Permitting & Transit)
  • Denver Igarta (Policy, Planning & Projects)
  • Kurt Krueger (Development, Permitting & Transit)
  • Wendy Cawley (Traffic Design)
  • Kim Roske (Civil Design)
  • Michelle Marx (Pedestrian Coordinator)
  • Roger Geller (Bicycle Coordinator)
  • April Bertelsen (Transit Coordinator)
  • Bob Hillier (Freight Coordinator)
  • Chris Armes (Parking Services)
  • Ryan Mace (Utilities, Construction & Inspection)
  • Marie Walkiewicz (Bureau of Environmental Services)
  • Jenn Cairo (PP&R Urban Forestry)
  • Marty Stockton (Bureau of Planning and Sustainability)
  • David O'Longaigh (Portland Water Bureau)
  • Tim Heron (Bureau of Developmental Services)

A wide group of the management team and subject matter experts will be consulted throughout the process in and outside of TAG meetings to ensure tradeoffs and project considerations are well vetted. Directors of impacted bureaus will be consulted and regularly kept up to date.

City Advisory Bodies

The Streets 2035 project team will report to and seek feedback from City Advisory Bodies such as the Urban Forestry Commission, the Pedestrian Advisory Committee and the Development Review Advisory Committee. These stakeholder groups will be consulted to raise community considerations and needs and help make sure project considerations match with everyday reality on our streets.

Do you have a question? Contact us.

Matt Berkow | Project Manager
mailto:Streets2035@portlandoregon.gov