Posted by Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) on October 22nd, 2013 at 9:40 am
Nearing the end of a one-year public process to update the Foster Road Transportation and Streetscape Plan, yesterday the Portland Bureau of Transportation released its official draft recommendation for how to re-design SE Foster Road from 52nd to 90th.
Their plan, which will be put in front of the Stakeholder Advisory Committee at a meeting tomorrow night, calls for three standard lanes (one in each direction and a center turn lane), on-street auto parking, and six-foot bike lanes for the entire length of the project area. In addition, PBOT is recommending wider sidewalks in the eastern segment of the project (SE 84th to 90th, through Lents) from their existing five feet to nine feet.
"The recommended option," explains PBOT in their five-page Draft Cross Section Recommendation document (PDF), "best addresses community input to date and meets the objectives of a safe and balanced multi-modal street that serves both local and district trips and supports the economic vitality of local businesses and the redevelopment of underutilized sites along Foster Rd."
With the addition of standard (un-buffered) six-foot bike lanes and the lane reconfigurations, PBOT says, "there would be a significant increase in safety and convenience in cycling, walking and riding transit along and across Foster Rd." The new cross-section would also reduce speeding since there would no longer be a passing lane for automobile users. PBOT also says that even with the lane reconfiguration, there would not be added auto congestion in the Foster corridor. Their models predict that up to thirty percent of Foster auto traffic would divert to other arterials.
A major issue throughout this planning process was whether or not PBOT and the SAC would opt to use the space currently taken up by on-street auto parking. PBOT's recommendation would maintain 94% — or over three hundred total spaces. Their recommendation calls for only twenty‐one on‐street auto parking spaces to be removed. According to PBOT surveys this parking is "little used."
Below are the existing and recommended cross-section drawings released by PBOT yesterday:
Download the PDF of the Draft Recommendation here.
There were many options discussed in the past several months that would have offered a much different bicycling environment. There was talk of a cycle-track, a buffered bike lane, and even a center-median bike lane. The Foster United neighborhood blog shared more on these options in a post titled, Something better than bike lanes for SE Foster.
PBOT will discuss their recommendation at the upcoming Stakeholder Advisory Committee meeting this Wednesday (10/23) at 6:00 pm at SE Works (7916 SE Foster Road, Suite 104).