Let me make this as clear as possible: If Portland wants to get more people cycling, we must provide a network of high-quality, physically protected routes that are connected to destinations. Any bikeway that does not provide physical protection from “A to B” that’s both real and perceived is a gap in the network.
I bring this up because of the fanfare that launched Better Naito last week. Don’t get me wrong, I think the fanfare is justified. The volunteers who advocated for the project initially and the city staff that have embraced it have many reasons to be proud. But let us not forget that this is still second-rate infrastructure designed on the cheap.[Read more…]
And then there were two.
Winners and losers are coming into focus in the mad dash for cash that is known as the Fall Budget Monitoring Process (BuMP). Two of the five Bureau of Transportation projects we’ve been tracking are now poised for funding.
$8 million from the city’s General Fund is up for grabs this go-round with about $4 million of that total set-aside for major maintenance and infrastructure projects. The process began with each city bureau submitting their funding requests. Then the City Budget Office offered their opinions to City Council. The final step before the budget is voted on at Council next week was to see what the Mayor wanted to do.
As we alluded to in a post this morning, we can now confirm that — out of the six PBOT projects in the discretionary category (as in, not part of the major maintenance and infrastructure list) — Mayor Hales has formally requested $350,000 for the Seasonal Naito project and $1 million for new sidewalks and other “safety improvements” on Northeast Halsey Street between 112th and 162nd Avenues (the Gresham border).
This weekend, the City of Portland plans to remove the temporary multi-use path from the eastern side of Naito Parkway so the space can be used by cars instead.
The City of Portland’s transportation bureau got past a key milestone on Wednesday when City Council voted to move forward with their Livable Streets Strategy.
Specifically, council supported the city’s $149,158 contract with consulting firm Nelson/Nygaard to come up with the framework of the strategy and set into motion what we’ve called “a new era of open streets.”
But during Wednesday’s otherwise uneventful council session we got a unexpected preview of the political debate that might lie ahead.
The City of Portland will take down the “Better Naito” project this Sunday night, whether it returns as a permanent bikeway and walkway someday is up to us. That was the message Mayor Charlie Hales gave a group of advocates, city staff, and agency representatives this morning.
This project has been a dream of Hales for almost two years.
The day has finally come: You can now ride your bike in legally-protected, cycling-only space between Davis and the Steel Bridge on Naito Parkway. [Read more…]
Is there a more Portland story than a group of “tactical urbanists” who go from putting up chairs and tables in parking spaces to partnering with the City of Portland on several major projects in less than three years? That’s the story of Better Block PDX, the all-volunteer group of aspiring engineers, transportation activists and urban planners who today kicked off the what they’re calling “the largest temporary street transformation in America.”
And that’s just one-third of their summer workload.
Portland Mayor Charlie Hales released his final proposed budget this morning and it includes funding for a project we’ve been hoping to see materialize for several years: improved access for biking on Naito Parkway. $1.46 million to be exact. It was one of 14 infrastructure projects and over $42 million in new spending he’s put on the table.