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50s Bikeway: still alive, just moving slowly

Posted by on April 18th, 2014 at 9:11 am

A Sunday ride-9
One holdup after another, but still moving.
(Photo by J. Maus/BikePortland)

Maybe it’s a mark of the eastward spread of low-car life that someone seems to ask us every few days when the 50s Bikeway is going to finally start construction.

The latest word from the city: early May. Hopefully.

“The contract prep has taken longer than expected,” project manager Rich Newlands wrote in an email last week. “But we do now have the pre-con[struction] scheduled for 4/29. In theory, the notice to proceed will be issued that day and within a week the contractor will start. But, still contingent on the contractor being timely in submitting all the final pre-construction submittals.”

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The 4.3-mile, $1.5 million route down Portland’s middle east side, which was delayed last August due to higher than expected bids, was previously supposed to start construction in late March and wrap up by late July.

When finished, the route will stretch from the Alameda Ridge south to Woodstock Street along 53rd and 52nd avenues (PDF), connecting the Rose City Park, North Tabor, Mt. Tabor, South Tabor, Richmond, Creston-Kenilworth and Woodstock neighborhoods, which include 20,000 residents and 12 schools. North of Division, it’ll be a neighborhood greenway marked with sharrows and directional signs; south of Division, a pair of 6-foot painted bike lanes on either side of the street.

Also, let’s all take a deep breath for Newlands, who’s simultaneously managing the red-hot 20s Bikeway debate and the active North Rodney neighborhood greenway planning. He could probably use the oxygen.

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  • Justin April 18, 2014 at 9:27 am

    Hmm. What’s the construction that blocked Clinton to nearly Division at 52nd this morning?

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    • Spiffy April 18, 2014 at 10:25 am

      there’s a bunch at Holgate and 51st too… not sure what they’re doing…

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    • davemess April 18, 2014 at 8:11 pm

      They ripped up the suface level of pavement. (has been like this since Wed.) I don’t know why, as it doesn’t look like they’re doing any sewer work or anything, and the road surface was pretty decent. THIS is what I don’t understand. Portland stop wasting our precious transportation funds repaving roads that don’t really need it!!!

      I just hope they already strip in the bike lane when they put the pavement back on. They would have to do that right? They wouldn’t just wait another month and put down new lines, right?

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      • davemess April 18, 2014 at 8:13 pm

        Sorry, I was talking about 52nd from Powell to Woodward.

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        • paikikala April 23, 2014 at 10:00 am

          How did you determine ‘need’ ? just curious what your experience with pavement design and maintenance is.

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  • Dillon April 18, 2014 at 9:35 am

    ^They’ve started re-paving 52nd.

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    • Justin April 18, 2014 at 9:56 am


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  • Kirk April 18, 2014 at 1:19 pm

    I want to express my gratitude towards Rich. He is a great guy working on many good projects throughout our wonderful city. I cannot even imagine how much juggling that takes. Once all the projects get constructed there will be much to celebrate.

    Even with having several projects on his plate, I sincerely appreciate how he has taken the time to listen to folks involved in the process. It has been enjoyable getting to know him better through these projects.

    Best of luck moving forward!

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  • Adam April 18, 2014 at 6:49 pm

    What “construction”?

    From what I can tell from the plans, all they are doing is flipping a few stop signs, and…. actually, I’m not sure they are doing much else.

    Is there even diversion as part of this project?

    What was the point of it, again?

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    • davemess April 18, 2014 at 8:15 pm

      Adding bike lanes at least(but I agree, this seems like just a removing lines and repainting, not really “construction”, although I as I said above I don’t know why they ripped up part of 52nd). And yes there is diversion on 52nd at Division (heading North)

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    • Terry D April 19, 2014 at 6:23 am

      Also semi-diverters at Burnside.

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