Great news just announced by the Portland Bureau of Transportation: They plan to spend $460,000 from the Fixing Our Streets fund (powered by a 10-cent per gallon local gas tax) to smooth out bumpy bike streets citywide.
According to PBOT, crews will begin a series of “microsurfacing” projects next week on several key neighborhood greenways and school routes. One of the problems with PBOT’s focus on side-streets as main bikeways is that they don’t tend to get repaved as often as more major collector and arterial streets. This lack of maintenance has led to many of Portland’s most important greenway routes being full of cracks and bumps that have a major negative impact on the cycling experience.
The list released today (below) features nine street segments where PBOT will use the new (for Portland), more cost-effective repaving treatment. The process of microsurfacing, as defined by PBOT, “lays a thin layer of asphalt mixed with polymer fibers to damaged street surfaces.”
Scroll down for the work schedule and list of streets:
Weds., Sept. 8:
N Ida Avenue from N Central Avenue to N Smith Avenue
N Houghton Street from N Haven to N Dana avenues
N Michigan Avenue from N Rosa Parks Way to N Ainsworth Street
Thurs., Sept 9:
NE Alberta Street from NE Cully Boulevard to NE 72nd Avenue
N Tillamook Street from N Flint to N Williams avenues
N Michigan Avenue from N Ainsworth Street to N Killingsworth Avenue
Fri., Sept. 10:
N Michigan Avenue from N Webster to N Fremont streets
Mon., Sept. 13:
NE 138th Place from NE Halsey to NE Sacramento streets
Tues., Sept. 14:
SW Bertha Boulevard from SW Beaverton Hillsdale Highway to SW Vermont Street
It’s great to see PBOT trying something new to address this important maintenance issue. In the past they’ve used a “fog seal” technique on neighborhood greenways, but perhaps this is a more comprehensive, longer-lasting fix. I live on N Michigan so I’ll report back on how it turns out.
One last thing… If you come up on a street closed for microsurfacing, you cannot bike through it because the material must dry without any tracks. Sidewalks will remain open, so just roll up and ride on by — while being extra careful of other sidewalk users.
Have a smooth weekend!
— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and firstname.lastname@example.org
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