odot

Oregon Senate confirms ODOT director who says freeway widening is a climate change strategy

Avatar by on December 5th, 2019 at 12:47 pm

Director Strickler.

It’s official.

Kristopher “Kris” Strickler was confirmed by the Oregon Senate last month to become the leader of the Oregon Department of Transportation. Strickler was picked and vetted for the position by the Oregon Transportation Commission, (the Governor-appointed body that oversees ODOT) who offered him the director position back in September.

Beyond activist circles, Strickler — a fan of freeway expansions who once managed the failed Columbia River Crossing project for Washington’s DOT — was anything but a controversial pick. His confirmation was a formality. Even so, given the importance of his position, I thought it worthwhile to share his confirmation hearing — in particular an exchange with a legislator around how ODOT will address climate change.

On November 19th, Strickler sat down in front of the five-member Senate Interim Committee On Rules and Executive Appointments. [Read more…]

ODOT will close northbound span of I-5 Bridge for 9 days next year

Avatar by on October 21st, 2019 at 12:01 pm

Get ready for 2-way traffic on the I-5 Bridge sidewalk.
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

How worried is the Oregon Department of Transportation about an upcoming closure of the Interstate Bridge? They’ve announced it nearly one year in advance.[Read more…]

ODOT employee taken off Vision Zero Task Force following Twitter rant

Avatar by on October 4th, 2019 at 9:29 am

Tiana Tozer at a PBOT Vision Zero event on September 26th.
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

A series of tweets last week by a State of Oregon employee has led to her removal from a City of Portland task force.

Following her participation in a Portland Bureau of Transportation Vision Zero event on September 26th, ODOT Region 1 Transportation Safety Coordinator Tiana Tozer turned to Twitter to respond to critics. Many people felt her responses — which included statements like, “Well listen up Stoopid… No matter how much we engineer our streets, some idiot, like you, will still find a way die on them” — were inappropriate, especially for a State of Oregon employee.[Read more…]

ODOT staffer raises eyebrows with series of tweets – UPDATED

Avatar by on September 30th, 2019 at 3:12 pm

Tiana Tozer at a PBOT event last Thursday.
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

Comments about transportation safety made on Twitter last week by Portlander Tiana Tozer have raised eyebrows. While her Twitter account is not an official ODOT communications channel (her profile says, “Opinions are my own”), Tozer is ODOT’s Region 1 transportation safety coordinator and she sits on the Portland Bureau of Transportation Vision Zero Task Force.

Here’s what happened:

Tiana Tozer attended a City of Portland event at Ventura Park Thursday morning. Later that day she replied to a tweet of a video we posted from the event. When someone questioned the effectiveness of holding signs and asking drivers to slow down, Tozer replied: “Ho hum another entitled American sitting back watching people die, but he himself has no solution. How easy it is to criticize. God forbid you should be part of the solution. Don’t strain yourself.” [Read more…]

Oregon Transportation Commission offers Kris Strickler job as next ODOT Director

Avatar by on September 10th, 2019 at 5:42 pm

Kris Strickler

[Read more…]

With eye on Portland-area freeway expansions, ODOT announces new “Mega Projects” office

Avatar by on September 6th, 2019 at 10:05 am

Prep for a future Columbia River crossing project will be among the office’s priorities.

The Oregon Department of Transportation is bulking up to handle a future where the Portland region is an epicenter of highway megaprojects.

In an email (below) sent yesterday afternoon to all employees, ODOT Deputy Director Paul Mather announced the formation of the new Office of Urban Mobility & Mega Projects to be based in Portland. A search process for a manager of this office is just getting underway.

The move comes in response to House Bill 2017, the $5.3 billion transportation package passed by the Oregon Legislature in 2017. That bill laid out funding for several projects in the Portland region (ODOT Region 1) and it defined “mega transportation projects” as those that, “cost at least $360 million to complete, that attract a high level of public attention or political interest because of substantial direct and indirect impacts on the community or environment or that require a high level of attention to manage the project successfully.” (The bill also established the Joint Interim Task Force On Mega Transportation Projects.)

Among the projects ODOT will focus on in this new office are expansions to I-5 and I-205, and an effort to re-kindle the Columbia River Crossing. [Read more…]

Robert Van Brocklin named head of Oregon Transportation Commission

Avatar by on July 24th, 2019 at 2:16 pm

Robert Van Brocklin.

The Governor-appointed body that oversees the Oregon Department of Transportation has a new leader.

ODOT announced today that Robert Van Brocklin will be chair of the Oregon Transportation Commission. Brocklin will fill the spot of current Chair Tammy Baney whose term ends August 31st.

Van Brocklin is a Portland resident who formerly worked as a managing partner for Stoel Rives LLP, Oregon’s largest law firm. He has also worked for the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation and was the Director of Government Affairs for the City of Portland. Van Brocklin joined the OTC in November 2017.

One of the many organizations Van Brocklin has been involved with is the Portland Business Alliance where he currently serves as a member of their Board of Directors.
[Read more…]

ODOT will shrink bike lanes on North Rosa Parks Way

Avatar by on June 18th, 2019 at 11:40 am

Looking eastbound on North Rosa Parks Way where it crossing I-5.
(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

10 months after the City of Portland widened the bike lanes on North Rosa Parks Way (where it crossing Interstate 5) the Oregon Department of Transportation wants to narrow them.[Read more…]

You have until Thursday to comment on ODOT Director job description

Avatar by on May 7th, 2019 at 1:46 pm

What would you like to see in the leader of ODOT?
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

The Oregon Department of Transportation is in desperate need of new leadership. Thankfully, the Oregon Transportation Commission is moving full steam ahead in their search for a new director.

The OTC’s search committee — led by Vice Chair Bob Van Brocklin, a lawyer with Stoel Rives LLP — has published a draft version of the job description and will accept public comment on it until this Thursday, May 9th. Below are a few salient excerpts from the description:

The OTC seeks a new chief executive that will manage ODOT through significant change…
[Read more…]

New section of Springwater will come with 10 new stop signs for path users

Avatar by on March 6th, 2019 at 1:22 pm

You can thank the ODOT Rail Division.

The Portland Parks & Recreation Bureau has started paving a new section of the Springwater Corridor path in Sellwood. This long-awaited project will close one of the last remaining gaps in this important regional path. It’s just a 0.4 mile section of the Springwater between SE Umatilla and 13th; but as any regional trail advocate will tell you, the sum impact is greater than its parts.

While it’s good to finally see progress on this segment of the “Sellwood Gap,” I was disappointed to find out that the City of Portland will install 10 stop signs along the new path. According to the official project plans, there will be stop signs (and associated stop bar striping) at the crossing of each roadway that intersects with the path: Umatilla, Harney, Marion, 9th, Linn, 11th, and 13th. [Read more…]