Posted by Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) on March 12th, 2008 at 9:26 am
One of Portland’s most popular bikeways has been selected by the Portland Office of Transportation to become the city’s model bike boulevard.
Clinton Street is poised for a
major makeover by PDOT.
(Photo © J. Maus)
As part of an ongoing effort to expand and improve Portland’s network of bike boulevards, Transportation Commissioner Sam Adams and the City of Portland Office of Transportation (PDOT) have launched the Clinton Street Bike Boulevard Enhancement Project.
According to project coordinator Kirsty Hall with PDOT, Clinton is a well-established bike boulevard but they city has not done enough to clearly communicate that the street is designed specifically for bike traffic.
“Many new cyclists,” she says, “don’t have a clue where to ride if they want to stay off the arterials, and most motorists don’t have a clue they’re on a bike boulevard.”
“The overarching objective of the project,” says Hall, “will be to communicate to all users that the street is a route prioritized for cyclists, and to make cyclists using the boulevard feel safer and more comfortable.”
Initially, Commissioner Adams wanted enhance markings and signage on all the 30+ miles of bike boulevards in the city, but cost concerns led to the decision to just focus on one bike boulevard. If the Clinton Street project is successful, the plan is to replicate the methods and process on other bike boulevards.
Elements of the project will include large on-street sharrow-type markings; on-street signage; on-street banners; bicycle-themed artwork, murals and more. PDOT has put out an official “Call for Artists” through the Regional Arts and Culture Council to create “a collaborative transportation safety-based public art project”.
The project has a budget of $80,000, with $70,000 from PDOT going toward planning and implementation and $10,000 from the RACC for the public art component.
Another component of this project is pre and post-evaluation of the new treatments. To that end, PDOT has just launched an online survey targeted at anyone who uses Clinton Street (either by bike, car, or foot).
Hall says Clinton Street was chosen because it is one of the most established bike boulevards in the city, it already has a good range of traffic calming methods in place, and it is surrounded by a neighborhood that is very supportive of it.
Another reason is the high volume of bike traffic on Clinton: According to 2007 bike counts, 1,800 bikes travel through the intersection of SE Clinton and 26th each day, compared to 2,300 motor vehicles.
The project’s scope will include Clinton St. from SE 12th to SE 53rd and the small portion of SE 21st Avenue from Clinton to Division at Seven Corners.
Hall says the project may also include Ladd Avenue, “given the extremely high numbers of cyclists who use it to get to and from the Clinton Bike Blvd.” However, she adds that, “Ladd Avenue’s status as a Historic Design District will limit what we are able to do in terms of markings, signage or other creative elements in the transportation right of way, so it may not be feasible to include it.”
PDOT plans to hold a series of open houses and design workshops in the neighborhood this spring and summer with final completion expected in fall.
If you’d like to sit on the Citizens Advisory Committee for this project, contact Kirsty Hall at kirsty.hall [at] trans.ci.portland.or.us. For more details, see the official project page on PDOT’s website.