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ODOT project means five nights of carfree St. Johns Bridge for walkers, bikers


Moonset from the St. Johns Bridge on April 8th, 2020.
(Photo: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

Starting Monday night next week, the Oregon Department of Transportation will begin a routine maintenance and inspection project on the St. Johns Bridge.

The work will require ODOT to close the bridge to car and truck drivers for five nights between 10:00 pm and 5:00 am. According to a statement this week, ODOT will keep the bridge open for bicycling and walking.

That means it’ll be possible to bike and walk on this magnificent bridge in a carfree environment. If you’re a night owl, you might want to make plans to enjoy this rare opportunity.

We initially thought it would be fun to plan a get together on one of the nights, but I’ve decided against it. An ODOT spokesperson reached out to us after some social media posts we shared on Monday. They said there will be equipment on the bridge and that work crews will be present to flag any riders or walkers through. I don’t think it’s cool to add to the workers’ stress just for a little fun, so we’ll have to do this some other time.

I do plan on heading out there one night to check it out. Yes it will likely be very cold, but I love this bridge and cannot resist the chance to ride across it without the usual stress, noise, and toxic emissions from cars and trucks.

See you out there!