Blumenauer makes Portland bike boulevards a “High Priority” project

Posted by on May 19th, 2009 at 11:31 am

Bike to Work Day in Lloyd District -4

U.S. Congressman Earl
Blumenauer has made his
transportation project
requests public.
(Photo © J. Maus)

[Via Mapes on Politics]

U.S. Congressman Earl Blumenauer has made his list of “High Priority” transportation projects public, and several of them are for bike-related projects in and around the Portland metro area. According to Blumenauer, the list was created to “ensure communities are full partners” in Congress’s efforts to re-write the federal transportation bill.

Capitol Hill lawmakers are in the process of creating the new bill, and as per usual, there is expected to be a lot of political wrangling and scrambling on how the hundreds of billions of dollars are spent. A small percentage of funds in the bill will go toward “High Priority Projects” that are specifically designated by Members of Congress.

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The highlight of the list for bike lovers (it also includes streetcar and light rail projects) is the “Citywide Bicycle Boulevard Construction” project. This project would give $25 million to the City’s effort to build 100 miles of bicycle boulevards throughout the city. It was first identified during Mayor Adams’ push for the “Safe, Sound, and Green Streets” fee proposal back when he was Commissioner of Transportation. Most recently, Adams submitted the project to Obama’s economic stimulus bill. Now, Blumenauer is trying once again to get these boulevards funded.

The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT), who crafted the project application in tandem with Metro, estimates that the boulevard project would support about 600 full-time jobs. But more importantly, they say it would double bicycle use in the city, thus realizing many other sustained health and economic benefits.

Another project on Blumenauer’s list that caught my eye was $2 million to make SE Monroe Street in Milwaukie a bike boulevard. (I just rode that street en route to our Get Together event last night).

See the full list here and learn more about the transportation bill by following the stories of Streetsblog’s new DC reporter Elana Schor.

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AvatarRoger GellerMatt PicioPaul ConeDavid Bragdon Recent comment authors
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This is great news. My question is how many of these proposed bike boulevards are going to be in east Portland, east of 82nd Ave? I hope to see improves throughout the city not only centered on the inner-city core.


Jordan (#1) +1 on the east-of-82nd idea.

I’m imagining Portland with 2x the current bike ridership. Makes me smile just thinking about it.


^ My thoughts exactly, people in the outer east ride bikes too!

Matt Picio

Awesome to see Milwaukie on that list. Would love to see more projects outside the urban core in the suburbs (and despite being part of Portland, east of 82nd *is* the ‘burbs, in terms of connectivity and land use).

Ok, after reading the list, I see there are a LOT of projects in outlying areas (though not much in outer PDX) – Sunrise corridor would build a MUP out to the Damascus area and connect with the future Rock Creek Trail. Airport Way Interchange will provide bike/ped improvements as part of the project. Happy Valley and Gresham both get bike/ped improvements as part of other projects, and the Region 3 trails funding would complete the Trolley Trail and fund the other SE Clackamas connectors currently in the works.

Great stuff, hope a bunch of this goes through!

David Bragdon

Great stuff for Earl and Cong. Dist. 3! A note with regard to desire for more facilities in outlying areas beyond the Portland core – point well taken, but remember that Earl’s district does not include all of the suburban areas mentioned. We need to get Reps. Schrader and Wu on board too, for their districts. For example there are some great western suburban corridors such as Rock Creek trail in Hillsboro and Fanno Greenway in Tigard that we at the Metro Council are working on. Earl is doing tremendous heavy lifting where he can; the nation just needs another 434 US Representatives like him.

Paul Cone
Paul Cone

Earl is also requesting $ for the CRC. Hmmm.

Matt Picio

David Bragdon (#5) said “remember that Earl’s district does not include all of the suburban areas mentioned”

Um, huh? Before your post, everything mentioned was in Earl’s district, except perhaps the Trolley Trail, which is in part outside District 3.

Note that the Rock Creek Trail I mentioned is in Happy Valley, and should not be confused with the Rock Creek Trail on the west side.

I agree with your general comment, though – it would be awesome to get the other representatives on board.

Roger Geller
Roger Geller

Paul #6:
The list on Earl’s website are those high priority projects requests made to him from various jurisdictions. Just because he received a request doesn’t mean he in turn is making the request. As far as I know, the only projects he’s forwarded are the $25 million for Portland’s bike boulevards and $10 million for bicycle projects in Congressional District 3 as requested by Metro.


Will the voters be allowed to vote on this? Share the road…Share the cost.