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Business owners can now apply for temporary pick-up/drop-off spaces

Posted by on May 18th, 2020 at 4:55 pm

PBOT graphic.

Portland Bureau of Transportation Commissioner Chloe Eudaly has announced another element of the Slow Streets Safe Streets initiative.

Business owners can now fill out a short online application to request that space on their block be repurposed from parking to a “temporary 5-minute pickup/drop-off parking space.”

This part of the program was hinted at when it was launched on April 28th. It’s part of a three-pronged approach that aims to change how we use neighborhood greenways, busy streets, and main streets in an era of increased social distancing.


PBOT says they’ll consider converting one space per block that will be shared by everyone. If it’s an excessively busy block, they might consider an additional space. Locations with, “high concentrations of restaurants and retail businesses that do not otherwise have other options,” will be given priority. In order to qualify, the requested space space may not be located on a street bike lane and it must be located on a corner for ease of access. New signs will be posted to explain how the space is meant to be used.

These new “5-minute priority zones” are a pilot and will be valid through October 1st 2020.

The other part of this main street strategy — space in the street for customers to line up — has not been launched yet.

— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and
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“temporary 5-minute pickup/drop-off parking space.” This is part of a “slow streets | safe streets” program? Perhaps there are better ways to help small businesses besides making it more convenient for a car to park at the front door…


Creating pickup/dropoff spaces may not be as helpful to some restaurants as closing streets for outdoor dining. Closing streets for outdoor dining isn’t the best way to help shoe repair places or pot shops. Luckily it’s not either/or.

Jesse Reade
Jesse Reade

But why would they, when everything is working “fine” for them now? Uber drivers have the universal “free parking” now, with just hitting the hazard lights and stopping where they see fit, why would a business owner make this push?