Several sections of the I-205 path will be updated by the Oregon Department of Transportation this year.
As part of a larger I-205 widening and repaving project ODOT plans to make upgrades to the adjacent multi-use path in Maywood Park, at NE Glisan, and at the SE Stark/Washington crossing. They will also stripe new bike lanes and crossings on the SE Johnson Creek Blvd overpass.
Here are the details…
Maywood Park repaving
The path in this location has several bumps and cracks due to tree roots which ODOT says are a “safety concern”. With $645,000 allocated for the project, ODOT says they’ll also upgrade curb ramps to make them more easily accessible for people with disabilities, add new signage (including the all-important “no motorized vehicles”), and install center-line striping. The need for striping might be related to this section being slightly downhill in the northbound direction which often leads to high speeds and increases a risk of collisions.
ODOT Region 1 Transit and Active Transportation Liaison Jessica Horning tells us the project was funded via a small, one-time program in the 2016-2018 Statewide Transportation Improvement Program (STIP).
Interestingly, last summer we heard from reader Ken S. that he suffered severe injuries while riding on this section of the path. He was biking southbound at the sharp, blind curve in the path at NE 96th and Mason (right where that tree is in the photo above) while two people riding abreast were coming the opposite direction. Ken said the nearby residents who responded keep a first-aid kit on-hand because collisions are so common at this location. ODOT says this current project will only address repaving and ADA ramps and that the alignment of the path won’t change.
It’s also worth noting that this section of the path is one of the main access points for the increasingly popular Gateway Green Bike Park, which doesn’t have a car parking lot or any direct automobile access.
Construction on this project is set to start in fall 2018 and should take a few months. Impacts to trail use will only last two weeks and there will be detours in place. ODOT is hosting an open house tomorrow (3/21) at Mt. Hood Community College (10100 NE Prescott Street, Room #144) where you can ask questions and learn more about what’s in store.
NE Glisan Intersection
Everyone who has ridden the northern I-205 path remembers crossing Glisan. It’s absolutely terrible. We are very happy to hear that ODOT is finally doing something about this.
The path at this location dumps people right onto a very busy arterial crosswalk. That’s bad enough. What makes it even worse is that automobile users constantly bully everyone else by encroaching into the crosswalks in their selfish haste to get on or off the two I-205 freeway ramps. And because this is such a car-centric place, the roads are usually full of debris, potholes, and cracks.
Not surprisingly, ODOT’s Horning says the changes that are coming have been, “informed by the crash history at that location”.
The changes will include: ADA-compliant curb ramps and upgraded beg buttons; a realignment of the crosswalks; widening the path/sidewalks on both sides of Glisan to 12-feet; and improving the visibility of the path by adding new LED lights, reflectors and signage. To encourage a base level of civility in drivers, ODOT will add special stop signs that aim to prevent right turns across the path (see image).
Unfortunately this project will result in the closure of the path between the Gateway Transit Center and Glisan for about 28 days during construction. A detour will be signed to guide path users to NE 99th.
SE Stark and Washington
Another bad crossing exists where the path meets up with Stark and Washington. Path users must cross two large arterials via unprotected crosswalks and a narrow sidewalk. ODOT appears to have just minimal upgrades planned at this location: they will widen the crosswalks to “allow for easier crossing for both pedestrians and bicycles.”
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