The Portland Bureau of Transportation announced changes to a key intersection on the Lincoln-Harrison Neighborhood Greenway yesterday. They also announced a delay for the infamous traffic diverter planned at 50th and Lincoln.
The project to update and improve this route began late last summer. It was triggered by concerns that the amount of people driving on what is supposed to be a “low-stress, family-friendly, bike route” was too high. The high speeds of auto users also drew the attention of PBOT staff.
The intersection of 30th (where Lincoln becomes Harrison going west) is offset. As such, it has a wide profile that encourages speeding and unsafe driving behaviors. From the get-go, advocates urged PBOT to “square up” the corners to force people to make slower turns. There was also support to prevent people from turning onto Lincoln/Harrison from 30th in order to reduce the overall number of drivers on the greenway.
They new design prevents people from turning eastbound onto Lincoln from 30th or going straight from Harrison. Medians and plastic delineator wants on the southwest corner will slow down auto users while providing pass-through spaces for bicycle riders and walkers.
PBOT says this new design was created in response to community feedback and that it will, “further tighten the intersection and provide shorter crossings for pedestrians.”
At 50th and Lincoln, installation of diverters will be delayed due to the traffic management and paving plans of the contractor hired for a repaving project on 50th between Division and Hawthorne. PBOT wants to make sure any data they collect about traffic impacts due to the new diverter isn’t tainted by closures related to the repaving project. The diverters were initially slated to be installed on an interim basis this spring. Now PBOT says the construction will happen late summer with the permanent diverter to be built in spring of 2019.
In a statement about the delay, PBOT said they weren’t able to anticipate this conflict because they thought the paving project would work in sections and not have to close any lanes. Since a lane will be periodically closed, they felt it best to wait until after the paving project is completed. Learn more about the project on PBOT’s website.
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