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City begins Hawthorne Boulevard Project

Posted by on July 10th, 2006 at 5:09 am

[Hawthorne Boulevard]
Photo by VirtualTourist.com

Next Monday (7/17), the City of Portland Office of Transportation will begin a major construction project on SE Hawthorne Blvd. The 35-block Hawthorne Boulevard Project will add safety improvements from 20th to 55th Streets.

Hawthorne Blvd. is the second busiest east-west corridor in SE Portland and is the heart of a major business district.

According to the official statement, the year-long project hopes to improve pedestrian and bicycle safety, transit operations, and traffic flow by installing curb extensions, upgrading traffic signals, re-aligning intersections, and adding covered bicycle parking areas.

Does this mean we’ll be seeing the fabled “bike-oases” sometime soon? I’ll keep you posted.

NOTE: At BikePortland, we love your comments. We love them so much that we devote many hours every week to read them and make sure they are productive, inclusive, and supportive. That doesn't mean you can't disagree with someone. It means you must do it with tact and respect. If you see an inconsiderate or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Thank you — Jonathan and Michael

  • Sara July 10, 2006 at 3:28 pm

    I think that curb extensions, upgraded traffic signals, and alligned intersections are not going to be enough to make Hawthorne safe enough.

    One idea I’ve had for Hawthorne is to make each direction one lane for cars plus a bike lane (or have a really wide sharrow so that cyclists could avoid parked car doors), with a turning lane in the middle. The crosswalks also need overhead signals or alert lights. It’s just so congested that it’s hard to see if people are trying to cross the street.

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  • Aaron July 10, 2006 at 4:10 pm

    I agree with Sara. These improvements are a very meek effort to make the city look better without actually having to inconvenience the allmighty car driver. These ‘improvements’ will do nothing to ensure that drivers follow the speed limit and/or give pedestrians the right of way to cross the street. Let’s see sharrows and a few pedestrian refuges at least.

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  • Clinton rider July 10, 2006 at 5:09 pm

    Just remember…the more east-west through traffic is inconvenienced (or “calmed” in city parlance) on Hawthorne, the more they will find their way to Salmon, Lincoln and Clinton for a less inconvenient/congested route. That could make our bike blvds worse. As the city implements “calming” on Division and Powell, we will probably see all of our SE bike boulevards get a lot busier with cars.

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  • Randy July 11, 2006 at 11:00 am

    Sara’s suggestion is identical to one made many years ago by the BTA, the BTA still has a poster in their office with an artist’s rendition of this lane configuration on Hawthorne. This idea was nixed by PDOT engineers and the Hawthorne Blvd. Business Association during Advisory Committee meetings for this project because they felt it would cause excessive delays for motorists.

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  • Jessica Roberts July 14, 2006 at 9:16 am

    The drawing Randy refers to is beautiful and inspiring, and it’s hard to believe it was rejected. Jonathan, sometime when you’re in the area stop by the office and we’ll see if we can get a good photo for you to post.

    Jessica Roberts
    Metro-Area Advocate
    Bicycle Transportation Alliance

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  • […] That project is well under way and I just heard from a source at PDOT that these “Bike Oases” are scheduled for installation “any day now.” Here’s another drawing of a Bike Oasis, taken from Browning Shono’s website: [Photo: Browning Shono Architects] […]

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