View Full Version : New signal
01-15-2010, 10:06 AM
I just noticed this news story in the Tribune:
"State pushes up pedestrian crossing signal for dangerous TV Highway intersection
The Oregon Transportation Commission agreed Thursday to speed up installation of a pedestrian traffic signal at the intersection of Southwest 178th Avenue and the Tualatin Valley Highway in Aloha."
I'm wondering if anyone is familiar w/ that intersection from a bike perspective. If so, how/if this signal might impact bike safety.
01-15-2010, 11:58 AM
The not presently in print Washington County Visitors Association bike map shows TV Highway having a full 4' bike lane through that section of the highway(the Bike There! map shows it too).
Unfortunately, TV highway is one fast, dirty, nasty highway to ride alongside, even with a clearly marked 4' wide bike lane. For that reason, I avoid it if at all possible. At least part of a commute route can be made on quiet neighborhood streets Alexander and Johnson on the north side of the highway starting at 170th, and Blanton on the south side. They don't have bike lanes, but traffic on them is low and slow enough to support good biking on them. From previous threads here in the forums, I recall other people commenting that they use those streets. They're some of the ones I prefer if I'm traveling between Beaverton and Hillsboro, etc.
Pedestrians really need a crosswalk signal that stops motor vehicle traffic with a red light at 178th, so pedestrians can cross safely; It's 3/4 of a mile between 170th and 185th, presently the nearest intersections to 178th with such a light. From 178th in either direction, that would be about 1800 feet...same as 9 blocks in downtown Portland. That's a lot of hoofin' it to cross the street safely on a regular basis.
01-18-2010, 09:09 PM
What? Not a single other person besides myself from the West Side or parts beyond has any personal experience to relate about this section of TV Highway with its few safe crosswalks? I know there are people that ride this area regularly, and that are probably checking in on this forum from time to time.
Why are you not taking advantage of the opportunity this thread offers, to let people that check it out, have some first hand accounts of where infrastructure in this area could benefit from improvements? :confused:
01-19-2010, 11:35 AM
As an instructor for the League of American Bicyclists, I work with several group homes that adults with physical or mental challenges live. There is a house near that crossing that I have been working with staff to get residents to be able to get to the 7-11 on the north side of the highway on their own. “Dennis (one of the residents) loves his coffee!”
In itself, my assessment is that this cannot be done without staff present.
ODOT has tried to take steps necessary to reduce collisions between cars and pedestrians, but all, so far have been incpmplete.
Without a light at that crossing, it is nearly impossible to cross without at least one of the 4 lanes having a vehicle that doesn’t stop.
As for bicycle traffic, it has been pointed out that TV hwy is a miserable place to ride. I agree, but for a straight line shot east-west, there is little alternative.
The WashCo BTC has been striving for 12 years to improve conditions for bicycling in Washington County and we're making bigger steps now than in the past.
We look forward to the West Side Get together on the 27th to share and collaborate on ideas.
I live within a mile or two of this crossing. From what I have seen its mainly used by Tri-met riders accessing the bus stops on either side of TVHWY. For people on bikes crossing going north it dumps them in a heavily travel residential area that is used as a cut through for those avoiding backups on TVHWY.
01-23-2010, 06:20 PM
Yosh...welcome to the forum, (your first post....excellent ;) )and thanks for your observations on the crosswalk at 178th, as well as on motor vehicle use of streets in the residential area north of TV highway at this intersection. I'm presuming you're referring to Alexander. In an earlier comment, I described this street as being located in a quiet neighborhood...which I'm inclined to think it mostly still is...but to be accurate, it's been awhile since I've actually ridden it. I wouldn't at all be surprised if it's being heavily used by motor vehicles as a cut-through to escape traffic congestion on TV highway during, for example, rush hour.
Other than those hours, I'm thinking it's still probably a mostly slower traffic, quiet street. That's partly because it's rather narrow and has some ups and downs that don't allow a long sight-line for people driving cars. I'll get over and check it out before long.
This should be an excellent street for bike travel if cut-throughs haven't made it otherwise. If one were there, for many types of people riding bikes and wanting to cross to the south side of the highway, a signaled crosswalk at 178th may turn out to be far more preferable for crossing than with the intensely busy traffic on 170th, either on the road itself or in the signaled crosswalk there.
01-24-2010, 09:42 AM
My wife goes through that area daily, I used to until I changed jobs. A couple of time a week, there are car accidents. They are from the one alert motorist that stopped to let a ped cross and some unattentive moron rearends the stopped car, then another moron rearends him...I have seen 6 cars piled up in one shot. Speed limit is 35, people go 45. It's not well lit at night, peds seem to usually wear black at night. The lights are very much needed. The issue I have is the 1.2million they are spending on it. They are gonna need a couple of poles, some signs, some flashy lights, a relay, and a couple of buttons. The electricity is there already. So thats what, $100 grand at best? If they have state employees performing the install.....oh wait, state employees = 1 or 2 workers and 20 observers (for safety). ok, so allow that another 100 grand (because it's gonna take them a year to put up the flashy lights and such). Where does the other million bux go? If they hire a contractor to install the flashy lights, it should total about a half mil. Still leaves 700K. Where's the rest of the $$$ going?
It would be easier for them to get away with pocketing our money if they legalize drugs. Everyone would be baked and not care. Sober, we notice $1.2 million for a signal. Government really gets under my skin. And they want to raise my taxes because of budget issues. There are no budget issues, there are crooked politician issues. Sorry to say, those issues will never be fixed.
01-24-2010, 05:50 PM
Silverlion, it seems to me a good idea might be for the public to able to see an expense breakdown for this signal installation. In the Tribune article, Jason Tell, ODOT’s Region 1 manager cites the $1.2 million figure. More people in addition to yourself may be wondering what accounts for a project budget of that size for this crosswalk signal.
I spent some time today browsing ODOT's website, but couldn't find anything there about the TV Highway and 178th intersection, the crosswalk planned for it or an accompanying budget. A link to the ODOT Region 1 project page:
ODOT Region 1 Projects Page (http://www.oregon.gov/ODOT/HWY/REGION1/ProjectPage.shtml#wash)
Nothing there under the Washington County heading. I did various other searches across ODOT's site, but found nothing.
01-24-2010, 09:42 PM
Some of you may remember the news of a November 1st pedestrian-car collision at the 80th and Foster Rd crosswalk that doesn't have a traffic stopping sign. From what I've read and can remember about it first hand, that intersection has some similarities to the section of TV highway near 178th; wide street, fast moving traffic, long distances between crosswalks with signals, it's the site of a bus stop.
Two young women crossing the street in front of a stationary bus at the bus stop were hit by a car that did not stop as the girls were in the process of walking past the front of the bus on their way across the street. One woman was a fatality that day, the other...in a coma since that day, at last passed on today.
About the young woman struck by a car on 80th and Foster Nov 1 ....Oregonian story (http://www.oregonlive.com/news/index.ssf/2010/01/woman_injured_at_southeast_fos.html)
Lots of discussion about who is and should be responsible for taking necessary precautions to avoid such a collision took place in response to bikeportland main page stories about that collision. The simple fact though, is that the intersection, same as the one on TV highway #8, does not have a red light traffic signal sending an indisputable message to road users that they must stop even if they aren't necessarily able to see the reason the red light has been activated (ex. bus blocking view of pedestrian that have pushed the crosswalk button).
04-11-2012, 08:37 PM
Going through stories at Oregonlive.com, I just now noticed the news about a stop light finally going in at the 178th intersection with TV Highway.
Dangerous TV Highway intersection in Aloha finally getting stoplight/Rose/Oregonian (http://blog.oregonlive.com/commuting/2012/04/dangerous_tv_highway_intersect.html)
TV Highway has always been a bad place to be for anything living not inside a motor vehicle. 178th is the point along the highway where people have had need to cross the road to get to the convenience store, bus stop, and so on. Since it's not a dense, high level revenue generating area, nothing much gets done barring death or injury, which is what happened sometime back in 2009 or '10; A couple kids got nailed while trying to cross the road. Though not fatal, it was enough to at least get ODOT to speed up its schedule to have a traffic light installed there.
04-12-2012, 08:00 AM
Wow! I see the original story talked about the cross walk signal. Now it is a stop light.
They replaced our local low-tech flashing crosswalk lights with the bright frantic flasher LED lights. It has made quite a difference in vehicle response. But there are still way to many people too busy to use the brake pedal.
I use the light at 170th all the time but I am glad this option is there.
04-19-2012, 09:35 AM
It's been a while since I visited here but now I'm back to biking I thought I'd chime in.I have not ridden my bike on TV highway for a few months now. I did recall passing through that intersection when they built the warning lights for pedestrians to cross which I thought was a bad idea because when a pedestrian pushes the button to turn on the warning lights, some cars doesn't stop right away or they ignore the lights period.
Now that they actually built a stop light, its a good idea for the pedestrians to cross. I think its always unsafe to ride that intersection because you'll either compete with pedestrians standing on the bike path waiting to cross or trimet bus occupies the bike lane when they do their pick up and drop offs at that intersection and that's why someone here mentioned that its wiser to avoid that intersection and cut through that neighborhood.
To me, TV Highway has always been a dangerous road to ride because some part of the bike lanes are too narrow and I was afraid of cars hitting me especially if they are all going 40 or more MPH.
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