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Banished bollards mean better biking on Bryant Bridge

Posted by Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) on February 20th, 2008 at 10:12 am

ODOT crew member Heath Hansen
removes a bollard on the Bryant Bridge.
(Photos © J. Maus)

This morning ODOT maintenance crews removed the bollards at the entrance to the Bryant Street Pedestrian Overpass.

This little known bridge is a key link between the Piedmont and Arbor Lodge neighborhoods in North Portland and it provides a safe crossing of I-5. However, in recent years it had become neglected and almost forgotten until a group of nearby residents received a $50,000 grant to improve the bridge through funds made available by the I-5 Delta Park freeway widening project.

As part of the Bryant Bridge improvement effort, the community has been working with ODOT to develop a master plan to identify specific improvements intended to make the bridge safer, more appealing, and easier to access.

The bollards, which were placed in the middle of the path right after a 90-degree turn before entering the bridge, made it difficult for bikes to get by -- especially for families pulling trailers.

Artist and Piedmont resident Brian Borrello, shown here at a recent community meeting, has spearheaded the effort to improve the bridge.
This drawing was created during a community brainstorming session.

Responding to community feedback, ODOT decided to remove the bollards. In a statement about the decision, ODOT spokesperson Shelli Romero said,

"ODOT remains committed to assist with making the Bryant Street Pedestrian Overpass a safe and more utilized facility for bicyclists and pedestrians recognizing its location is ideal for bike and pedestrian commuters and is in proximity of transit and access to a business and commercial district along N. Interstate Avenue."

Also according to ODOT, the bollard removal will not impact the $50,000 budget for other bridge improvements.

For more information about the Bryant Street Bridge Improvement Project, visit the project website on the Piedmont Neighborhood Association website.

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Comments
  • KT February 20, 2008 at 10:18 am

    That\'s pretty cool! :) Makes it easier for everyone to use the bridge, and doesn\'t bite into the $50k. Awesome.

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  • xor February 20, 2008 at 10:39 am

    i think the verb you were looking for in the headline was \"bring\". haha

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  • gabrielamadeus February 20, 2008 at 10:52 am

    nice headline there! Brian is also the artist commissioned to design the new Zoobomb Pyle, along with vanessa renwick.

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  • Donald February 20, 2008 at 10:56 am

    That\'s cool. I\'ve given the boys a few rough bumps trying to edge our double wide trailer through there.

    Watch that west departure, though. I\'ve had a couple close calls with cars barrelling up from the alley on the other side of that accoustic wall.

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  • Tonya February 20, 2008 at 11:03 am

    Ooh, yay! I use that bridge at least a couple times a week in the summer with our trailer. That bridge will be so much easier to navigate now. Awesome!

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  • janis February 20, 2008 at 11:17 am

    Come out and enjoy the lack of bollards on June 22nd during Sunday Parkways!!!

    To find out more go to http://www.GettingAroundPortland.org and click on Sunday Parkways.

    Thanks ODOT and all the people that are working on the project.

    Cheers, Janis

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  • kasandra February 20, 2008 at 11:47 am

    alluring alliteration, Jonathan.

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  • Anonymous February 20, 2008 at 11:50 am

    Never Mind The Bollards

    Here\'s The Ped Bike Bridge!

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  • encephalopath February 20, 2008 at 10:05 pm

    Where is that damned thing... I want to ride across it sometimes, but I can never figure out where it is.

    Finally a map from my own neighborhood association. Yay!

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  • davidio February 20, 2008 at 10:11 pm

    To find said bridge, approach from either Bryant (east side) or Saratoga (one block south of Bryant on the west side).

    If they could now make Bryant a WHOLE lot less bumpy east of the interstate it would make for an excellent E/W bike boulevard just south of Lombard . . .

    Perhaps the men attending to removing the bollards also selected some of the lovely garments that have been on display on the east side of the bridge for the past couple of weeks??

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  • neonjones February 20, 2008 at 10:23 pm

    Sssshhhh!
    (No coordinates- you\'ll reveal this secret wormhole passage across the freeway!)

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  • Cecil February 21, 2008 at 6:12 am

    So, am I giving away my age when I say that I am disappointed that this post wasn\'t entitled \"Never Mind the Bollards\"?

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  • dano February 21, 2008 at 9:16 am

    I have fallen down before, making the tight turn on to the bridge while avoiding the bollards. \'Course, I was pretty lit. Now I can have one for the road and still make it home without laying down on the pavement!

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  • maxadders February 21, 2008 at 10:17 am

    I went out there a few weeks ago to check it out. Sorta got spooked by a homeless / incoherent mumbling guy shuffling up the path who seemed to appear from out of nowhere. I don\'t usually mind such things, but it\'s sorta confined out there in the bridge approaches (plus, I wasn\'t riding-- I was stopped and taking snapshots). If I used it regularly, or at night, I\'d watch out for sketchy folk up there.

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  • joe adamski February 21, 2008 at 11:13 am

    A small part of the funding for this came from the North Portland Trust fund, a mitigation fund ( translate... you have to put up with noise pollution from Portland Int\'l Raceway, we will toss you a few dollars.)

    I just wanted to call everyones attention to it, as if you live/work in North Portland and have a smaller project that affects community livibility / community building {{ read this to mean... a bike related project or anything that a small grant and a little help from your friends could make happen.}} go to portlandsentinal.com and click on the community resources / NP trust fund link on lower left corner..

    There is 30K in the fund this cycle, and it might be a good opportunity to fund a bike improvement. this is for north portland only..

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  • Chris Sullivan February 21, 2008 at 4:25 pm

    Glad I can now round the corner onto the bridge without having to slow to a stop. Can\'t wait to see how this project takes shape.

    BTW, you should have swapped out \'bestow\' for \'mean\' in the title of this piece. :)

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  • Dabby February 21, 2008 at 4:37 pm

    Oh man,

    You think those bridges are sketchy at night now...

    I used to live at the corner of Failing and Missouri, (we referred to it as \"Failing Miserably\"} around 1986.

    The other ped bridge is right there in that block also.

    Even while it was open, it was a death trap. Thugs would actually wait on the other side, watching for people to start crossing it.

    They would then attack and rob people when they were in the center of the bridge.

    Not just robbed. Stabbed, shot, and killed to boot. It was not long after this I believe it was shut down entirely

    And this was during the day.

    At night? Well, most new the best idea was to go nowhere near the bridge crossings at all in the dark.

    They are a gift now. Usable, safer, with new access.

    And as far as the above advertisement comment to check it out on the Sunday Parkways ride?

    Dammit! Just go ride over there and check it out this weekend.

    Wait \'till June my butt...........

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