PBOT: School relocation will mean more auto traffic on North Flint

Wheeler Ave traffic and meeting-8

Traffic on Flint at Broadway.
(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)

A popular route for bicycling will change a lot when school starts later this week.

On Thursday the currently vacant school on North Flint Avenue just south of Russell will become the temporary home for Faubion School. Faubion (which serves kindergarten through eighth grade) will move from their northeast Portland location while their school is rebuilt over the course of the next two years.

Flint is a popular connection between the bike lanes N Vancouver Ave and N Broadway. The move means that what used to be a quiet backstreet for thousands of bike riders each day will see a lot more auto traffic.

The situation warranted a press release by the bureau of transportation yesterday. PBOT is recommending that people who want to avoid the traffic — especially during the morning and afternoon pick-up and drop-off times — stay on Vancouver to Tillamook before getting back onto Flint.

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detourfaubion

PBOT’s suggested detour.

Faubion has just over 500 students and according to the city’s most recent Safe Routes to School survey over 40 percent of them walk or bike to school. However, that survey also showed that all those walking and biking trips were made by students who live one mile or less from the school. With the temporary location on Flint being over five miles from Faubion, both Portland Public Schools and PBOT, “anticipate that the… distance between the two sites will result in more families driving to school.”

PPB and PBOT are working together with the public, students and families to help with traffic issues. PPS held a bike breakfast at the site last week to spread the word about the change and they say bus drivers have gotten special training on how to maneuver “in a highly bicycle trafficked area.” PPS will also work with the city’s Safe Routes program to encourage bike trains, walking school buses, ride sharing, and other options to driving.

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rick
rick
6 years ago

Smith School, a public one in SW Portland, has been closed since 2005.

Spiffy
Spiffy
6 years ago

If you’re moving the school more than a mile you should supply buses. It’s insane to expect parents to drive their kids to school in an urban area.

JeffTB
JeffTB
6 years ago
Reply to  Spiffy

Busing to Tubman will be available to all Faubion students.

Paul Wilkins
Paul Wilkins
6 years ago
Reply to  Spiffy

Faubion is a ‘catch-basin’ school, for a lot of the area north of Columbia Blvd, including Hayden Island and Jubitz.

We were all assigned a bus. But I’m not one to expect that people’s habits are going to change wholesale. Anf there’s going to be an adjustment period.

Go Bulldogs!

John Lascurettes
6 years ago
Reply to  Spiffy

Yes, I believe they were testing the bus delivery of students on Monday. There was kind of a cluster-f of buses all arriving at the same time Monday morning and caused a jam. Not something I want experience on a daily basis (plus frenetic car-shuttling parents!).

Thanks for the article, with this info, I’ll definitely join Flint down at Tillamook instead of Russel – or just take Vancouver all the way to Broadway and pick up the bike lane there.

Dave Whitaker
Dave Whitaker
6 years ago

A word of caution about connecting to Flint via Tillamook. During the morning commute, people driving cars southbound on Flint often times will pass cyclists and will driving in the northbound lane at the Tillamook intersection. Need to be extra cautious when pulling onto Flint.

Paul Wilkins
Paul Wilkins
6 years ago

Parents are being asked to drop off children behind the school.

John Lascurettes
6 years ago
Reply to  Paul Wilkins

Thanks for that. It will still take a while for parents to get used to that. Also, the buses coming in will still cause a snarl for the auto and bike traffic headed to the Broadway Bridge.

daisy
daisy
6 years ago

I hope PBOT is also targeting folks in cars. Sometimes folks drive way too fast on N Flint, zipping into the opposing lane to pass bikes rather than slowing down a bit. Just this morning a motorcycle buzzed pass two or three folks on bikes.

Kiel Johnson / Go By Bike
kiel johnson
6 years ago

That street desperately needs speed bumps. would make a big difference preventing impatient drivers speeding around parents on such a wide street.

rick
rick
6 years ago
Reply to  kiel johnson

Why not chicanes?

Adam H.
Adam H.
6 years ago

This is the exact wrong approach. Instead of alerting people of higher car traffic, PBOT should install temporary diverters to maintain a safe level of car volume.

This attitude of “lots of cars, too bad” at PBOT needs to stop.

John Lascurettes
6 years ago
Reply to  Adam H.

In this case, it’s not going to be just cars, but several school buses in the morning.

ethan
ethan
6 years ago
Reply to  Adam H.

Cars first mentality.

John Liu
John Liu
6 years ago
Reply to  Adam H.

But a diverter cannot let “some” cars through while excluding others. It lets “no” vehicles through. Surely you wouldn’t want to prevent all Faubion parents from driving their kids to school, and to prevent any Faubion kids from arriving by school bus.

WAR
WAR
6 years ago

When your a tech minion transplant gentrifier pushed everyone around.

Karma will push you around too.

Call your sides.

That is all.

JeffTB
JeffTB
6 years ago
Reply to  WAR

Translation: gentrifying cyclists will get pushed around by school buses….?

maccoinnich
6 years ago
Reply to  WAR

Your powers of non-sequitur are strong.

Hello, Kitty
Hello, Kitty
6 years ago

I think PBOT needs to get out ahead of situations like this, figure out what traffic patterns are appropriate, then take steps to inform/encourage people to follow them. That might take the form of signage or even physical barriers.

Matt
Matt
6 years ago

Could go Russell–> Rodney–> Broadway. Probably be a little more busy

Bet people will stop running stop sign leading onto Broadway 😉

WAR
WAR
6 years ago
Reply to  Matt

I see people blow stop signs in front of me only to see them at a red light later.

Please, If your going to RUN stop signs, RUN the lights to.

Pfft.

John Liu
John Liu
6 years ago
Reply to  Matt

What’s wrong with continuing down Vancouver to Broadway?

Lee
Lee
6 years ago
Reply to  John Liu

No official right turn allowed there. At that light there are two lanes of parallel traffic to the right. They are exiting from i-5.

lop
lop
6 years ago
Reply to  Lee

Those two lanes off I5 have a red light when Vancouver gets a green, and neither of them are permitted to turn right onto Broadway. What conflict is there?

John Liu
John Liu
6 years ago
Reply to  lop

When I ride from Vancouver St to the Broadway Bridge, I always simply turn right from Vancouver directly to Broadway. The bike lane on Vancouver ends before the intersection, but then you simply ride in the right-most lane that is seldom crowded (isn’t it bus only?) for 100 feet to the intersection, and then the signals are phased for the right turn across the freeway offramp. It is easy as pie. I’ve never felt any need to use Flint.

Buzz
Buzz
6 years ago

I used to commute to downtown on N. Flint when the Harriet Tubman school was still open. Yes, there was some extra traffic, including school busses, but it was never worthy of PBOT issuing a warning to cyclists to use an alternative route, and I don’t see why they are doing it now. What I mostly remember is the friendly bus monitor with whom I would exchange greetings every morning as I rode by.

Robert Burchett
Robert Burchett
6 years ago
Reply to  Buzz

Maybe there will be more students? It was a magnet school before.
Good reason to skip the Flint/Russell intersection and its two days per year of black ice! If you haven’t crashed there, keep at it!

gutterbunnybikes
6 years ago

And nothing about Franklin to Marshall?

90’s & Powell is going to be a lot worse the next two years…though Woodward will be pretty chill with all the student and new drivers gone.

John Liu
John Liu
6 years ago

Grant HS will also move to Marshall in fall 2017.