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Mayor Hales restores sidewalk funding for SE 136th Ave

Posted by on April 4th, 2013 at 10:18 am

SE 136th Press Conference-3
In a show of political force, six state lawmakers
joined Mayor Hales at a press event for
the SE 136th sidewalk project yesterday.
(Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

Standing on a dirt and gravel shoulder and squeezed between two parked cars, Mayor Charlie Hales announced yesterday morning that he intends to move forward with the sidewalk project on SE 136th Avenue.

Back in February, Bureau of Transportation Interim Director Toby Widmer said he needed more money for paving and he wanted to take the $1.2 million already set aside for the sidewalk to do more of it. That decision set off an outcry from the community. Even though PBOT is technically under the Mayor’s purview and Widmer is his hand-picked director, Hales distanced himself from the decision almost immediately. Then, less than two weeks later Hales faced even greater pressure when five-year old Morgan Cook was tragically killed by someone driving on that same road just a few blocks away from where the sidewalk was planned.

“If all we do is maintain what we have then we’ll leave behind the parts of the city that have nothing and that’s not right.”
— City Commissioner Steve Novick

Hales addressed Cook’s death in his comments yesterday. “The tragedy highlighted two conflicting problems in Portland’s transportation system. We have miles and miles of streets that need attention and paving; but we also have safety problems throughout the city, specifically pedestrian safety problems.”

Portland City Commissioner Steve Novick, who has been active on east Portland transportation issues since coming into office on January 1st, said we must be careful with balancing these needs. “There are people who say all we should do is just maintain the roads. Maintenance is important, but if all we do is maintain what we have then we’ll leave behind the parts of the city that have nothing and that’s not right.”

SE 136th Press Conference-7
Rep. Fagan.

Novick put forward his “creative” idea to build new sidewalks. Current City code requires developers to build a new sidewalk with their project. But that creates a “patchwork quilt” said Novick. He wants sidewalk money from developers to go into a fund that would construct sidewalks where they’re needed most. (The Oregonian has more on this idea.)

PBOT Director Widmer said construction of the new sidewalk on SE 136th between Powell and Holgate will begin this fall.

Beyond that project, the issue of sidewalks in east Portland has become a state priority as well. Six members of the Oregon legislature spoke at yesterday’s event. They included: Senators Jackie Dingfelder (D-Portland) and Chuck Thomsen (R-Hood River), and Representatives Shemia Fagan (D-Clackamas), Alissa Keny-Guyer (D-Portland), Jeff Reardon (D-Portland) and Jessica Vega Pederson (D-Portland).

Rep. Reardon, who represents much of east Portland said his district is short on “housing, bicycles, transportation, and economic development.” “It has been a very inequitable situation over the years and we’re very committed to addressing that.”

Rep. Fagan spoke passionately and with a strong voice. She thanked the family of Morgan Cook, saying, “They had every right to slam the door and grieve in private.” A mother of a young child herself, Fagan said, “I can’t even begin to imagine what it feels like to lose a child so I’m taking my marching orders from that family.”

According to Fagan, she and her colleagues have already begun discussions with the Speaker of the House and the Ways and Means Committee to find $3.6 million in state capital funds to build sidewalks on SE 136th. Fagan pointed out that there are 2,000 students who use the street to access local schools. “All of these kids need a safe route to school,” she said. “And these families are not just Portlanders, they are Oregonians and we owe them as well.”

SE 136th Press Conference-11
Robert Gagne, shown here talking with Mayor Hales and State Rep. Alissa Keny-Guyer interrupted the press conference.

Toward the end of the event, a man pulled up, got out of his car and started yelling at Mayor Hales. Richard Gagne, a local resident, expressed frustration at the lack of action from the City on traffic safety issues. “It’s sad it takes a child getting hit for anybody to step up and do something.”


There are two great upcoming opportunities to learn more and weigh in on east Portland transportation projects: PBOT is hosting a meeting on Monday (4/8) from 7-9:00 pm at Ron Russell Middle School (3955 SE 112th Ave) and several state legislators are hosting a Transportation Town Hall on April 27th with reps from ODOT, TriMet, and PBOT on hand to answer questions.

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  • steph routh, Oregon Walks April 4, 2013 at 10:23 am

    Our thanks to Rep. Fagan, Mayor Hales, Cmsr. Novick, and all who have rallied in support for East Portland. Here’s Oregon Walks’ thanks in blog form: http://oregonwalks.org/blog/se-136th-sidewalk-project-funded-thank-you

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  • Todd Hudson April 4, 2013 at 10:28 am

    I am glad to see East Portland get the infrastructure attention that it deserves.

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    • Hugh Johnson April 5, 2013 at 5:04 pm

      As usual it’s only after someone is hurt or killed.

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  • roadrashdoc April 4, 2013 at 10:40 am

    Good time to install bike lanes on SE 136th. Are bike lanes included in the project?

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    • eli bishop April 4, 2013 at 10:44 pm

      i WISH!

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  • J-R April 4, 2013 at 10:55 am

    Increase the gas tax so we aren’t constantly making choices between the lesser of evils. Since 1993 highway construction costs have gone up by 70%, Oregon gas tax has gone up by 25%, and the federal gas tax is unchanged!

    As to Novick’s idea: it’s a Ponzi scheme. Current development will pay for sidewalks that weren’t constructed years ago and twenty years from now developers will pay for sidewalks that should have been built in 2013. We’ll never catch up.

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    • NF April 4, 2013 at 11:14 am

      Novick’s plan would never reach 100% sidewalk coverage, but it may help us get sidewalks the the higher priority streets like 136th.

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  • 9watts April 4, 2013 at 11:17 am

    This is classic politician.
    A few months before Fukushima melted down Germany’s ruling party nixed the plans which had already been agreed to about phasing out nuclear power in Germany.
    After Fukushima: O.K. we’re getting out of nuclear power after all. Never mind.
    Lurching & caving to public pressure. An important lesson here.

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    • Phil Kulak April 4, 2013 at 11:38 am

      They are elected by majority. What would you like them to do? Would you like our mayor appointed by the governor instead?

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      • 9watts April 4, 2013 at 11:42 am

        I would prefer they have a plan, a long term vision, a rationale for why more or less paving, more or fewer miles of sidewalks or curb cuts, etc., and defend their decisions than engage in all this shadow-boxing and backpedaling. Having said that, responding to public pressure is almost as good or in some cases (perhaps this one) even better.

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  • oliver April 4, 2013 at 11:44 am

    Just a couple years ago there was a story (possibly a serial) in one of the local journals (O, WW, Tribune?) about outer east Portland. The premise being that the area is largely (currently) inhabited by a demographic (conservative, religious, recent immigrant, anti-tax, anti-regulation, anti-government involvement) that is against improvements that can be labelled ‘complete street’/’pedestrian friendly’/’multi-modal’/‘Agenda 21′ or whatever label we want to call the idea that streets are for people and not just cars.

    Is the push for sidewalks coming from a different group out there?

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    • steph routh, Oregon Walks April 4, 2013 at 12:09 pm

      Really? I grew up in East Portland, live there now, and obviously advocate for better walking conditions there. Sidewalks on major streets (outer Powell, 122nd, etc) are pretty heavily desired. If you find a link to the article you’re thinking of, would be great to see it.

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      • oliver April 4, 2013 at 12:44 pm

        Yeah, I’ll see if I can find what I’m referring to. I think it was the Tribune, but I’ll try and do some digging this afternoon.

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    • davemess April 4, 2013 at 12:23 pm

      I can’t imagine anyone complaining about adding sidewalks. I could see opposition if they are reducing auto lanes, but if the cit is paying for it, I don’t see anyone in my SE neighborhood (Brentwood Darlington, that is probably 5% sidewalked) that would be against sidewalk installation

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      • oliver April 4, 2013 at 12:45 pm

        Sure everyone’s for “improvements” as long as it doesn’t inconvenience them or cause an increase in their taxes.

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  • peejay April 4, 2013 at 12:03 pm

    Funny how some of the state lawmakers declaring that they’ll try to find money for this key safety and livability improvement are the same ones who voted to tie up huge amounts of state money on an unnecessary bridge, one that will have a deleterious effect on livability and safety—as well as health—in our city. If we abandon the CRC right now, we could actually start doing the sidewalk projects east Portland needs RIGHT NOW.

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  • kww April 4, 2013 at 12:03 pm

    I applaud the reversal, but it is so sad that it takes a child’s death to make that happen.

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  • Ted Buehler April 4, 2013 at 12:12 pm

    So, this is good and all, but personally I’d like to see them build sidewalks in advance of 5 year old girls being killed by cars.

    Or, make immediate mitigation to these streets where you take your life in your hands to walk down the shoulder. Like
    * lower speed limits
    * enforcement of existing speed limits
    * enforcement of existing distracted driver laws
    * enforcement of existing DUII laws
    * repairs to muddy pathways with gravel or wood chips to allow pedestrians to walk a reasonable distance from cars.

    None of these would take much effort, really, and would make immediate improvements to the safety of walking in outer E Portland.

    Ted Buehler

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    • Peter W April 4, 2013 at 8:26 pm

      Agreed. At the rate of one sidewalk per death, we’ll be seeing a flood of fatalities before we even get close to a complete network of safe walkways.

      Ted’s ideas could be very effective at relatively low costs. Reducing speeds could be especially helpful in saving lives, since people walking tend to get killed mostly in streets.

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    • wsbob April 5, 2013 at 11:30 am

      “…* enforcement of existing speed limits
      * enforcement of existing distracted driver laws
      * enforcement of existing DUII laws …” Ted Buehler

      Of the five items you listed, I suspect the above three take a lot of effort and money to do, which is probably one of the bigger reasons the city doesn’t manage its streets better with enforcement of those items.

      Lowering speed limits may be a great idea though. I wonder if outer neighborhood streets, due to the neighborhoods they’re in having comparatively less activity on the street than some close in neighborhoods don’t tend to be in a sense, abused by transportation dept’s feeling compelled to assign the greatest posted speed limit allowable, as a means of using those streets to maximize vehicle flow rates.

      Great idea also, is improving for pedestrians and cyclists, the shoulders of streets and roads on streets that do not have full sidewalks. Accomplishing this wouldn’t be particularly cheap, where water runoff in ditches may require installation of conduit, and of course, agreement with adjoining property owners as needed. Maybe cheaper, easier to maintain, and faster to build though, than full sidewalks.

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  • GlowBoy April 4, 2013 at 12:41 pm

    Like so many others, I’m always disappointed that it sometimes seems to take a death to get a road fixed. And I’ve been around long enough to see this happen OVER and OVER and OVER again, both in Portland and elsewhere. People complain and complain, warning that someone’s going to get killed someday, and nothing happens. Then they’re proven right, and something finally happens, too late for the victim.

    Ted’s suggestions are good ones. I’m especially gung ho about enforcement these days: with the number of people killed by cars in our city seemingly starting to approach the number killed by guns, it’s time for the police to take a more active role in enforcement.

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    • El Biciclero April 5, 2013 at 11:34 am

      “with the number of people killed by cars in our city seemingly starting to approach the number killed by guns, it’s time for the police to take a more active role in enforcement.”

      Yeah, but gun violence is a crime; vehicular violence is an accident…

      But cynicism aside, this is an apt comparison. I just don’t think most people think of “car accidents” this way. People are so acclimated to driving (car-head) that none of the “it’s like having ten 9/11 attacks every year”, or “it’s like a jumbo jet crashing every week” comparisons ever sink in. Sometimes it makes me want to shake people in melodramatic 50′s-movie fashion: “Don’tcha see?! Can’tcha see it?! Come on, snap out of it! Wake up and smell the roses!”. Oops, that’s my cynicism again…

      Two “incidents”–one fatal–within blocks of each other in Washington county this week highlight the problem. In both cases, drivers left the roadway and drove over a sidewalk to claim their victims. Enforcement might help; so would denying access to driver’s seats for folks that are unfit to drive cars.

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  • TOM April 4, 2013 at 5:41 pm

    I can’t find any mention of how far sidewalk will run on se 136th …. will it go all the way from Division to Foster ?

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  • Mike April 4, 2013 at 9:23 pm

    I am curious how a sidewalk would have prevented this tragedy. If someone runs out in front of car from a sidewalk or an unpaved shoulder wouldn’t the end result be the same? Would a crosswalk have prevented the girls death or reduced speed limit? Sidewalks are really, really nice but it isn’t a cure all.

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    • eli bishop April 4, 2013 at 10:46 pm

      it’s not a cure-all. but it IS a boundary that is easy for drivers and children to understand and be trained to avoid more readily.

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    • wsbob April 5, 2013 at 11:11 am

      Mike…I think you’re correct in questioning the value of sidewalks in preventing or discouraging impromptu between-intersection street crossings by pedestrians. Where money is tight and complete sidewalks with curbs represent a substantial cost over something simpler such as a broad, paved shoulder, signalized crosswalks at key points would likely do a better job of meeting the needs of pedestrians.

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      • steph routh, Oregon Walks April 5, 2013 at 11:25 am

        wsbob, Mike, and 9watts:
        Pedestrian crashes are more than twice as likely to occur in places without sidewalks; streets with sidewalks on both sides have the fewest crashes. (Smart Growth America, http://www.smartgrowthamerica.org/complete-streets/complete-streets-fundamentals/factsheets/safety)

        In addition to reducing walking along roadway crashes, sidewalks reduce other pedestrian crashes. Roadways without sidewalks are more than twice as likely to have pedestrian crashes as sites with sidewalks on both sides of the street. By providing sidewalks on both sides of the street, numerous midblock crossing crashes can be eliminated. (FHWA, http://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/ped_bike/tools_solve/walkways_brochure/)

        A sidewalk is not just safer infrastructure; it is also a visual cue to people driving that people also walk. Visual cues help remind people driving that some road users bike, walk, and take transit. Sharrows, marked crossings, bike lanes, and sidewalks all functions as reminders.

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        • wsbob April 5, 2013 at 12:18 pm

          Steph…I certainly would not disagree that full sidewalks with curbs are probably much better at offering protection to pedestrians than are broad shoulders, but when probably many of the city’s residents may be having to deal with no adequate walking area whatsoever, adjoining roadsides, maybe improved road shoulders would be a good interim response. At some later date, full sidewalks might be constructed when money is brought in for them.

          I’m visualizing roads I’ve walked along, that had hardly any walkable shoulder beyond the white fog line…maybe little more than a foot before it drops off into quite a wide ditch. I’ve often thought: hey…from a functional and an engineering standpoint, if culverts were installed to carry runoff, and the area over the culverts was filled and paved, a 5′-6′ shoulder could possibly be created.

          This is just brainstorming…I don’t have facts and figures at hand to verify whether what I’m wondering about is on the mark.

          The situation with people lacking adequate infrastructure to support walking seems to be one of: ‘How much money is available, and how far can it be made to go for the safest facility for the time being?’.

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          • steph routh, Oregon Walks April 5, 2013 at 12:25 pm

            Totally agree with you that we need to brainstorm and really explore cost-effective solutions. I do think the answer to “how much money is available” is always “zero” without political will. Where there is will, there is funding. We need to build that will for safer walking solutions beyond one street at a time, to a comprehensive (cost-effective!) build-out of safer walking, biking, and access to transit.

            Thanks for your thoughtful comments.

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        • 9watts April 5, 2013 at 5:15 pm

          Hm.
          I wonder. presence or absence of sidewalks also correlate with other differences such as density, posted speed limits, etc. I wouldn’t think a simple comparison would be easy to make without some careful attention the the denominator.

          This quote from that study you cited, Steph, doesn’t inspire confidence:
          “A recent study comparing the United States with Germany and the Netherlands, where Complete Streets are common, found that when compared per kilometer traveled, bicyclist and pedestrian death rates are two to six times higher in the United States. Complete Streets therefore improve safety indirectly, by encouraging non-motorized travel and increasing the number of people bicycling and walking. According to an international study, as the number and portion of people bicycling and walking increases, deaths and injuries decline.”

          (1) complete streets are great for everyone. check.
          (2) moving about as a non-automobilist in urban Germany and the Netherlands is much safer than over here. check.
          (3) safety in numbers is an important principle. check.

          But does this mean adding sidewalks to SE 136th will make it safer to cross 136th? Maybe, or maybe not. I’m not opposed to sidewalks at all. I’m just saying that a simple assertion that sidewalks will make a given street safer for pedestrians to me is something we’d need to carefully qualify or understand better than I do from reading this study.

          If you keep reading, we find:
          “simply painting crosswalks on wide high-speed roads does not reduce pedestrian crashes.”

          and the very next sentence (sorry SE 136th – not happening; it is far more important to use your tax dollars to bomb peasants in Afghanistan) is where it gets interesting:

          “But measures that design the street with pedestrians in mind – sidewalks, raised medians, better bus stop placement, traffic-calming measures, and treatments for disabled travelers – all improve pedestrian safety.”

          Yeah, no kidding.

          But which is more expensive? More quickly implemented? More likely to happen at all? This, or what Ted listed – serious attention to enforcement of existing laws and reduced speed limits?

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      • steph routh, Oregon Walks April 5, 2013 at 11:30 am

        Oh, one more thing: wider paved shoulders are sometimes better than nothing at all, but they also are commonly used as an unofficial passing or parking lane (depending on the road). Do you have data on improved safety of paved shoulders?

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        • Barbara April 5, 2013 at 4:58 pm

          PBOT has just installed awide shoulder on SW Maplewood, as a creative way to improve pedestrian safety without the high costs of a sidewalk. I have heard that you get 80% of the safety benefits at a fraction of costs. When you look at the sheer number of street miles without sidewalks both in E and SW Portland, this could be one solution. I think we should just switch some of neighborhood roads to Woonerfs or the German Spielstrasse (play street). The don’t have sidewalks, just hurdles for traffic, like planters, alternating street parking etc. and cars are required to drive at “walking speed”. You find these primarily in new housing developments and residential areas.

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          • Barbara April 5, 2013 at 5:30 pm

            Here is some more information and photos on Spielstrassen:
            http://workbike.wordpress.com/2009/02/27/vehicular-evolution/
            http://www.panoramio.com/m/photo/10551836

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            • 9watts April 5, 2013 at 5:52 pm

              We could learn a lot from them. Yep.

              No need to reinvent the sidewalk.

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          • wsbob April 5, 2013 at 11:33 pm

            I hope to get around to seeing the pedestrian supportive changes made to SW Maplewood (hey…take some pics, post them in the forums?). The wait to have the streets of lower revenue generating neighborhoods made less arduous for pedestrians and cyclists to travel, shouldn’t always have to so protracted. Inadvertently, that may be what tends to happen.

            This is something that probably happens in many cities. Master plans are put together that promise to advance cities forward with a number of marvelous improvements. Looks good, but the timeline for work to be done, puts some of the critically needed projects years down the road, keeping people waiting and waiting and waiting. As you noted, less complicated infrastructure may cost significantly less, and that being the case, could possibly help to get improvements made on a more timely basis.

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            • Barbara April 6, 2013 at 7:37 am

              Here is a little information about Maplewood. Not very good pictures, though:
              http://www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/article/441850

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              • wsbob April 6, 2013 at 12:11 pm

                Barbara…thanks for posting that link. As you said, not very good pictures. It’s very hard to tell from them, exactly what improvement was made.

                Following, is a link to a year old Oregonian story with good info about the project, that I don’t remember reading, and which, judging by tweet count and only one comment posted, also doesn’t appear to have received a lot of notice. The accompanying ‘before’ picture (unfortunately, no ‘after’ pic) offers a classic example of roadside situations that could relatively easily be improved, and why they should be improved. It shows two people working to roll a person in a wheelchair along the sloped, but quite wide, graveled shoulder of the road.

                http://www.oregonlive.com/portland/index.ssf/2012/08/maplewood_road_construction_im.html

                SW Maplewood, for those that may be wondering, is just west of Gabriel Park, and intersects with Multnomah Blvd at 42nd.

                The article quotes Don Baack of SW Trails. He apparently for quite some time, has been studying this lower tech cost efficient approach to improving roads for more serviceable bike and pedestrian use.

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                • Barbara April 6, 2013 at 12:33 pm

                  Hi WSBOB, yes SW Trails (which I’m a member of) and Don Baack have worked on this for a long time. It’s also a safe route to school (Maplewood Elementary). The difficulty was to get the city (I think it was a BES project) to make a paved sidestrip not just a narrow, sloped gravel path that would have been unsuitable for wheelchairs and strollers. They did a demonstration of a wheelchair user halfway falling into the ditch to get the point over to the city.

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                • steph routh April 6, 2013 at 6:25 pm

                  wsbob, I have a response to your recent post, but I don’t think it would be useful in post form. My personal email is steph.routh@gmail.com. Please feel very invited to email. Cheers.

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              • wsbob April 8, 2013 at 2:06 pm

                Today, I rode over to Maplewood to see how the roadside shoulders had been improved. At 45″ of now level walking-biking road shoulder, the asphalt paved shoulders are a modest, but huge improvement over what I imagine existed before, a likely example of which can be seen right across the street on the east side, which is yet to be upgraded.

                5′ or 6′ would be better, but the shoulder is now, definitely able to be walked on with greater safety and practicality. On the upgraded side, considerable culvert work the city had to do to widen the shoulder, is apparent.

                Incidentally, Maplewood has quite an extraordinary coffee shop community center in a vintage house just south of the school. Hours 7-3pm. It’s a throwback in time…beautiful old place, interior has the original interior beadboard paneling, high ceilings, nice garden out back.

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  • Kdub April 5, 2013 at 6:40 am

    This is fine and dandy but as a life long resident of outer East Portland I have been told by the city that there is just no money for improvement. The fact that no sidewalks are grandfathered into existing properties means that there is a great deal of “red tape” that must be gone through in order to put sidewalks in and I have found that the city will hear complaints but is not a priority out this way.

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  • TOM April 5, 2013 at 9:13 am

    At least the Division undercrossing is getting some attention

    http://www.oregonlive.com/cycling/index.ssf/2013/04/portlands_i-205_multiuse_path.html

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  • Barbara April 5, 2013 at 5:12 pm

    The lack of sidewalks is not just a problem for E Portland. SW Portland is just as bad. You may say that people on average are more affluent here, but that doesn’t mean that the City has more money to spend on sidewalks here. Plus sidewalks cost more in SW because the hills and clay soil cause drainage issues. The only difference is that people probably drive even more cars here, making it more dangerous. Most of the schools in SW, including ours, Hayhurst, have no sidewalks whatsover in the vicinity. Not surprisingly, Hayhurst has one of the highest proportions of kids driven to school in family cars. Especially crucial thoroughfares like Beaverton-Hillsdale Hwy, Capitol Hwy, Vermont and Multnomah have hardly any sidewalks. At the same time neighborhood streets often can’t be used as an alternative, because they are really steep, don’t go through and/or are unpaved (yes, lots of unpaved streets, too). And yes, we do have low income people here, too, living primarily along these high-traffic, no sidewalk highways.
    In my opinion, “back to basics” should be basics like sidewalks. We need a systematic approach to the sidewalk problem and a money source (even Beaverton is able to raise a street tax). And unorthodox solutions like wide paved sidestrips like the one on Maplewood is at least a start.

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  • bjorn April 6, 2013 at 10:22 am

    I don’t think anyone should be lionizing Hales on this. His strategy seems to be to slash funding for things so that he can look like a savior by returning partial funding while actually spending less. If someone stole your bike you wouldn’t consider them a hero because they brought the wheels back to you and kept the rest.

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  • jim April 7, 2013 at 11:23 pm

    We have sidewalks on our street and people still choose to walk in the street instead of the sidewalks.

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    • TOM April 8, 2013 at 9:02 am

      I frequently ride SE Main form 142 out to 181 …our friends from the former CCCP , have a church out that way ..when services let out , they come streaming down Main …side by side , sometimes 6 wide, in the wrong lane, facing & blocking traffic . They will not yield for cars or bikes.

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  • jim April 7, 2013 at 11:28 pm

    If you add sidewalks, are you also going to add curbs? If you do where is the water going to drain into? Are you going to add storm grates hooked up to the sewers? Bioswales every block at $20k a pop?

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    • wsbob April 8, 2013 at 9:53 am

      Your questions relate to some of the same that previous comments have addressed, having to do with simpler, lower tech responses to street situations with inadequate provision for people to walk and bike on the street:

      http://bikeportland.org/2013/04/04/mayor-hales-restores-sidewalk-funding-for-se-136th-ave-85055#comment-3916217

      I think it’s probably true that, one way or another, water must be allowed to drain off and away from the street, for the street to be safely passable. It seems that accomplishing this essential drainage though, may be possible by means that are less expensive and labor intensive than full sidewalks with curbs and the type of drains they require.

      Re; people walking in the street: Sometimes in some situations, it makes more sense for people to walk in the street rather than on inadequate, poorly maintained sidewalks or streets with inadequate shoulders to walk on. I think some tolerance on the people that drive, of people finding themselves having to use the at times better option of walking in the street rather than the sidewalk, probably has to be accepted as part of the right to use the road.

      Situation TOM is mentioning, with people getting out of church in great numbers at one time, using the street on foot: On Sundays around church service hours, knowing that many people will be filling the street for short periods of time, it may make sense for him to divert a bit from his usual route, to avoid the crowds of people on foot.

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  • TOM April 8, 2013 at 9:10 am

    jim
    We have sidewalks on our street and people still choose to walk in the street instead of the sidewalks.
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    I frequently ride SE Main from 142 to 181. there is no bike lane to speak of …stay mostly on the white line.

    Our friends from the former CCCP have a church out on 181. When it lets out, they come streaming down Main …up to 6-8 abreast, on the wrong side …they will NOT yield to cars or bikes.
    I have to go into the oncoming lanes just to get around them …many times there are multiple groups like this ….the only ones that seem to show courtesy and stay on the shoulder are the younger ones.
    Authorities do not seem to care.

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  • TOM April 8, 2013 at 9:49 am

    Long as I’m venting about traffic & SE Main St…..

    we live at 142nd ..Main is straight and flat from 139 to 148. There are NO stop signs for that whole length. It is a natural drag strip unless controlled. It is NOT controlled. The cars blast up and down it at full speed, day and night.

    there are kids that play in the street , some of us have to back out of our driveways into it.

    I wrote to City of Portland (during the Adams regime) and explained that. Their response came back titled “TRAFFIC CALMING” , stating that there had never been a fatality on Main, so NO problem exists.

    On my second try with COP, they answered (to the effect) “we have aerial surveillance of that street (I’ve never seen a plane, helo or satellite) and nobody ever goes over 35MPH” …they even had an hour by hour graph to prove their points.

    On my 3rd try, they answered “If you want a speed bump, it’ll cost you …$800 each”

    On my final try, they answered “If you want a stop sign, a study needs to be conducted, and it will be rejected as nobody has been killed there”

    Hope that Hales can do better ….?

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  • TOM April 8, 2013 at 10:43 am

    wsbob
    with people getting out of church in great numbers at one time, using the street on foot: On Sundays around church service hours, knowing that many people will be filling the street for short periods of time, it may make sense for him to divert a bit from his usual route, to avoid the crowds of people on foot.
    Recommended 0

    good idea, but I’d considered that long ago. They seem to come out at odd times.

    also there are really only 3 through streets between 142 & 181 …Stark, Division or Main.
    Stark is lousy , Division is the wrong direction for my destination.

    just because you are leaving church or because you are an immigrant , does not give license to block an entire lane of traffic.

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