Urban Tribe - Ride with your kids in front.

Light rail work leads to closures, detours on SW Moody cycle track

Posted by on August 6th, 2013 at 11:33 am

SW Moody cycle track-5-4

Expect the unexpected when you ride
on the Moody cycle track for
the next few months.
(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)

The hits in our detour-filled summer just keep on coming…

TriMet has temporary closures in place on the SW Moody Ave cycle track as part of their ongoing Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Transit Project. The closures started last week and will last through October 18th. DeeAnn Sandberg with TriMet Community Affairs says the closures are necessary to allow TriMet to install tracks in the roadway. SW Moody is a major corridor to the South Waterfront neighborhood (and points south), the Aerial Tram, as well as OHSU’s various patient facilities and offices.

Bicycle access will remain throughout TriMet’s light rail work; but closures will alternate between the cycle track on the west side of the street and the sidwalk on the east side of the street. Here are details from a flyer TriMet is handing out in the area:

  • Aug. 1–Sept. 6: East sidewalk on Moody CLOSED, please use west sidewalk
  • Sept. 9–Oct. 18: West sidewalk on Moody CLOSED, please use east sidewalk
  • Where to cross Moody Avenue to the open sidewalk during this work: SW Gibbs traffic light near the Portland Aerial Tram or at SW Sheridan Street
  • Please watch for signage and flaggers
  • Travel slowly during these closures to make sure all bike and pedestrian traffic can get through the area safely

And a map to help orient yourself…

This light rail construction comes in addition to existing work being done on The Emery apartments and OHSU’s new Collaborative Life Sciences Building. Both of those projects have narrowed the eastern sidewalk. Sandberg says TriMet is working closely with contractors to make sure there is always an adequate path available for people to bike through the area.

For more info and detour maps, visit TriMet.org/PM/construction or contact Sandberg directly via sandberd@trimet.org or (503) 962-2273.

NOTE: We want to keep you posted about all the detours in the area. Please let us know what you are seeing out there and for more information, visit our “Detours” page.

NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are productive, considerate, and welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Thank you — Jonathan

  • Jeff August 6, 2013 at 11:37 am

    Emery construction totally shut down the cycle track at about 7:15 this morning without warning.

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    • davemess August 6, 2013 at 1:36 pm

      The’ve also strangled it less than a lane for over 3 months now!

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      • Jeff August 6, 2013 at 2:56 pm

        Yeah, I’m so used to that, it doesn’t even register. But I *really* dislike having to cross the streetcar tracks.

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    • Steve Hoyt-McBeth (PBOT) August 6, 2013 at 5:09 pm

      Jeff, OHSU contacted PBOT about this and our inspector will be keeping an eye on the situation. As usual, we ask that everyone be cautious and patient during the construction. Thanks!

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  • Elliot August 6, 2013 at 12:10 pm

    I talked to a police officer after calling a road raging driver on Clinton on my evening commute yesterday. The officer asked me to put myself in the driver’s shoes, and that he might have been frustrated by the construction ten blocks earlier on Division. I told him that Clinton has been closed at 26th-28th for bicyclists for weeks, as had my alternate bike boulevard route, Salmon, at 23rd-26th. That gave him pause.

    I wish PBOT’s @pbotactive Twitter account would announce bike boulevard or other bike facility detours and closures. If the project is going to last for weeks, it seems like it would be noticeable enough for them to muster a tweet or two. Having to detour from Clinton onto Division during the morning commute has been annoying.

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    • Spiffy August 6, 2013 at 12:43 pm

      The officer asked me to put myself in the driver’s shoes

      this is why we can’t have nice things…

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    • Spiffy August 6, 2013 at 12:44 pm

      you could still bike on Clinton from 26th-28th, but you had to do so slowly on the sidewalk… the flaggers were very graceful in directing bikes down the sidewalk for two blocks…

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    • davemess August 6, 2013 at 1:39 pm

      Or, I don’t know, a sign up BEFORE the closure!

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  • rainbike August 6, 2013 at 12:10 pm

    In my experience, the construction workers in this area are generally a friendly bunch, with only the occasional lack of awareness that they’re working on/in/around a major bike route. None the less, respect generally begets respect. Beware though. Taking the lane here can be tricky, due to the street car tracks which run parallel with the road.

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    • davemess August 6, 2013 at 1:40 pm

      True, but they continually park their trucks right in the middle of the cycle path most days.

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      • rainbike August 6, 2013 at 2:28 pm

        I guess I pass through too early in the morning to have encountered that. I can see how it would be a problem.

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  • John Landolfe August 6, 2013 at 12:14 pm

    Thanks for spreading the word, Jonathan. My biggest worry is for people on foot through the narrow, shared path. The very next building just south of the Emery is a daycare and I’ve seen a few strollers moving through the work zone. My best tip to commuters would be to keep it slow through the path and keep your spirits up by remembering that bikes and feet are the only modes that will always have some way to get through Moody through the whole process. I scouted a detour via the Gibbs Street Bridge: http://goo.gl/maps/DYbny

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  • maccoinnich August 6, 2013 at 12:26 pm

    Jonathan / Michael

    I’m wondering if you could do a post summarizing the improvements that we can expect when all the work on PMLR and the Sellwood Bridge is done. I’m sure most people on here are aware of the wide bike/pedestrian lanes on each bridge, but I’ve been struggling to find out more information.

    For instance: what the route for cyclists between the Clinton bikeway and the Trimet Bridge/esplanade is going to be like (it was a disaster before, so I’m hoping for a big improvement; what the trolley trail is going to look like, and how, if at all, it will connect to the Springwater corridor; what the bike infrastructure along SE 17th will look like, and whether it will continue over McLoughlin, where 17th becomes quite a pleasant street to cycle on; how the Sellwood Bridge connects to the Willamette Greenway; etc etc.


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  • spare_wheel August 6, 2013 at 12:40 pm

    The moody cycle track is one the main reasons I do not take the tram up to OHSU. IMO, this facility is *WORSE* than the previous bike lane.

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    • davemess August 6, 2013 at 1:44 pm

      I was skeptical at first, but I find it decent, except for the horrible bottleneck at the Sheridan bridge (which they seemed to have alleviated somewhat with another ramp cutout), and the fact that pedestrians still can’t figure out to no walk/run in the bike lanes. And I’m still not a fan of the trees in the middle of the lanes, but it does make passing people a lot more interesting.

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    • Matt August 6, 2013 at 2:52 pm

      I agree. It is terrible. The bike path/pedestrian path crosses at weird spots for no apparent reason and biking toward downtown, you always have to stop to push the button to get the bike signal under the bridge. It is a guaranteed stop every single time. If you bike in the road, you have a 50% chance of hitting the light – much better odds.

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  • Indy August 6, 2013 at 1:05 pm

    This area has a lot of room for bikes, but man they need to not have bikes go from West side of Moody to East side of Moody. It’s not very well designed for commuters. Lot of blind spots for getting hit with those I-5 Pillars.

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  • q`Tzal August 6, 2013 at 4:46 pm

    All in all more construction projects causing detours in bike facilities is indicative of one good thing: more bike facilities!
    Not the construction of new ones but the density of what we have.
    In the 1980’s if PBOT & ODOT went a whirlwind campaign to repave 10% of all roads in the metro area very few bike facilities would be impacted because there were fewer.
    Now bikeways are every fricken where and PBOT can hardly start a project without actually impacting thousands of cyclists.

    And this is a Good Thing©.

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  • Moira August 7, 2013 at 9:39 am

    When the initial images went up for the moody cycle track I recall being impressed that the trees were going to divide the walkers from the bikers but when the project was finished the trees divide the bikers, making it as one commenter mentioned, interesting to pass other bikers. Could re- painting it fix this issue? Bikers on the east side of the trees, walkers to the west?

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  • Jeff September 4, 2013 at 11:18 am

    Just saw today that although we have to abandon the Moody cycle track for the east sidewalk Sept 12-30 it looks as though Moody will be *completely shut down* to vehicular traffic from Sheridan to about Gibbs. I am no longer complaining about riding on the east sidewalk.

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