Contractors working on a City of Portland Bureau of Environmental Services project in the central eastside want to spread the word about near collisions between bicycle riders and heavy equipment.
BES recently broke ground on their SE Stark Trunk Sewer Project, which will install a stormwater diversion structure to redirect combined sewer from a pipeline on Stark to the Willamette River during heavy rain events. Big pieces of material and heavy equipment are staged on SE 3rd near Stark. This is a relatively popular bike route that connects to SE Water Avenue.
We heard from a BES rep today that the contractor has reported some near misses with equipment operators and they’re worried about keeping the area safe.
One block of SE Stark between 2nd and 3rd, and one block of 3rd between Washington and Stark are closed during construction (which is expected to continue for five more months).
The detour is to use the sidewalks on Water Ave to get around the construction zone. Since sidewalks can be crowded, please consider walking your bike if you are unable to pass other people with safety and respect. “Cyclists must avoid riding on closed roadways even if it looks like there’s enough room for a bike to navigate around construction,” reads a BES construction bulletin sent out today.
The BES source we spoke to also said if the near misses continue, they might have to hire police officers to direct traffic.
Learn more about the detour on the project page.