Watch out for streetcar construction zones – Updated

Posted by on February 9th, 2010 at 12:46 pm

Construction zone bike lane on Broadway
west of Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
(Photo © J. Maus)

The City of Portland has sent out a “Bicycle Advisory” notice for several bikeway detours and closures in the coming weeks due to streetcar track construction (and related sewer work) on Broadway and Weidler.

Here are the latest details (emphasis mine):

Detail from map of latest
streetcar construction hot spots.
    Broadway/Weidler – NE Benton to Williams (Sewer work)

    Starting the week of February 8, 2010 and lasting until approximately Mar 5, 2010 — Westbound bike lane will be closed at times both during the day and night. Westbound bikes will be detoured at Wheeler, one block north to Dixon and back to Broadway at Benton. Eastbound bike traffic on N Broadway/Weidler, from Benton to Williams, will be re-routed onto the sidewalk from 7AM to 4 PM. Bikes must yield to pedestrians on the sidewalk.

    Broadway/Victoria – N Williams (Water work)

    For two days, likely Wed (2/17) and Thurs (2/18) — The bike lane and two travel lanes will be closed at night on Broadway between Victoria and Williams. Lanes will be closed starting at 8PM and continue into the morning commute. All lanes will be open by 8AM. Bikes must ride in the vehicle travel lane.

    NE 7th – Weidler – NE Oregon (Sewer work)

    Starting the week of February 24, 2010 and lasting until June 25, 2010 – Sewer work will alternate from the east and west sides of the street. A flagger may be present or the work may require closing parts of the street. More details related to bike impacts will be provided as they are known.

If you’ve ridden on Broadway recently, you’ve no doubt come face-to-face with these construction zones. One of our forum members, bobcycle, noted last month that the bikeway re-routes are sometimes a bit sketchy. If you have concerns about these construction zones, call 823-SAFE (7233) and let the City know about it.

To stay abreast of Eastside Streetcar Loop project construction, check out

UPDATE – 2/20, 8:50 am:
KPTV/FOX picked up this story and did a piece about it on their newscast last night. Check out the video here.

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Ted BuehlerA.K.Benjamin FooteTed Buehlerridelikeox Recent comment authors
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can’t you just take the lane instead?


Can’t wait for this to get built. As a carless household, my wife and I find the Eastside the most difficult to get to when we aren’t riding our bikes.

If where we’re going is close to Sandy then the 12 bus line is usually great, and it’s only a 30 minute walk across the Hawthorne to get to the East Industrial District, but other spots are problematic and I’m hoping the new streetcar line solves those.

John Lascurettes

Thanks for the heads up, BP.

Hmm. Depending on how sloppy these areas get with gravel and construction plates, I may just opt for the Steel Bridge for these months. That sidewalk detour is going to get nasty if it coincides with Blazer/Rose Quarter events.

Then again, it may go smooth. Time will tell.


It doesn’t show the onramp from Interstate (southbound) to Larrabee/Broadway Bridge westbound. Last week as well as yesterday (don’t know about today) the bike lane was closed, forcing a merge into (the only) car lane, and the entire ramp was getting periodically closed for 10-20 minutes –there is some kind of construction in the brownfield on the westhand side of the road (this one)


thanks for covering this, jonathan. i live and work in this area and westbound on broadway is really dangerous riding right now. the reduction in lanes has backed up traffic and many drivers are irritated and agressive. side streets are also affected, as many drivers are trying to find a short cut, speeding along otherwise quiet streets. bikers in this area need to have their heads on a swivel.

Ted Buehler
Ted Buehler

The days of riding on the right-hand side of MLK and Grand are over, from the Lloyd district south to somewhere around Division.

They’ll reopen the right lane with tracks embedded, probably next week, on both Grand and MLK in two-block sections just north of I-84, rendering it pretty much unrideable.

They’ll need something like sharrows along the left edge of the left lane, to let cars know that’s where the bikes are. And signs on cross streets directing bikes to use the left edge of the street?

It will be pretty sketchy — people aren’t used to shoulder-checking their right shoulder, so you wobble a bit more and don’t get as good of a view. And cars aren’t accustomed to watching for bikes on the left, etc.

Good news is since most cars only have one occupant, the risk of getting doored will be much less.

Ted Buehler
regular rider of MLK and Grand from Broadway to Burnside…

Benjamin Foote

Thanks to streetcar for making the effort to communicate detours and construction impacts.

I’m curious about the level of engagement between streetcar and pbot engineers with regard to bicycle infrastructure. I do suspect that it has been part of planning for streetcar but I’d love to hear it from the horses mouth if you will (either the pbot horse or the streetcar horse) how much bikes have been a part of the conversation.

And I support the idea of sharrows on MLK and Grand, particularly near the interchanges between major bike corridors such as Ankeny and Salmon.



Wow, brave soul for actually riding those streets! I avoid Grand and MLK at all costs and opt to take something a few streets higher up to go the same direction. Sure, there are stop signs and such frequently, but at least you avoid the busy traffic of those streets.

Ted Buehler

A.K. —
Normally I don’t like big, fast streets, but I’ve found them to be pretty okay. There is (was) usually not much traffic in the right lane anyway, not a lot of parked cars.

And, for getting from Tillamook @ MLK to somewhere in the inner SE, it’s a significant detour to go east to Vancouver (with a down-the-hill-and-up-again) or west to 12th.

I could also ride a fat tire bike for those trips to the inner SE and ride in the streetcar lane, but that’s not going to work for most of the people, most of the time…

Ted Buehler

Ted Buehler

Whoops, _West_ to Vancouver Ave or _East_ to 12th…