Open house set for “transformation” of NE Multnomah Blvd in Lloyd District

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Going on a diet.

On May 15th, the Lloyd Transportation Management Assocation (TMA) and the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) will unveil their plans to significantly alter the roadway design on NE Multnomah Street. Or in their words, give it a “transportation transformation.”

The open house announcement for this project — which we first reported on back in December — was sent out to stakeholders today. Here’s a snip from the invite:

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Gibbs Street Pedestrian Bridge nearing completion (photos)

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Gibbs Bridge sign on Moody cycle track

The sign (on the Moody cycle track) is
done, and the bridge itself is
coming along nicely.
-More photos below-
(Photos © J. Maus)

It’s been just about 16 months since the Gibbs Street Pedestrian Bridge broke ground. And lo and behold, it’s set to open late next month.

I took a ride in the Aerial Tram yesterday and snapped a few photos of the new bridge (scroll down). I didn’t realize this project was so close to completion.

Once open, the bridge will connect the Lair Hill neighborhood to the South Waterfront District. The west end of the bridge is at the intersection of SW Gibbs St. and Kelly Ave. From there, the bridge winds over I-5 to an elevator and staircase that stand at the southern end of the new cycle track on SW Moody. The stairs are expected to be bicycle-friendly but I have seen them up close yet. I imagine most folks would just take their bikes on the elevator.

Here are a few more shots from above…

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ODOT project will improve biking, walking in southwest near Ross Island Bridge

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Detail of project plans.
(ODOT graphic)

The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) has just rolled out plans for a project that will improve biking and walking access along SW Kelly Avenue near US 26 and the western end of the Ross Island Bridge.

Along with project partners TriMet and the City of Portland, ODOT will make a host of significant changes along SW Kelly Ave., including the reduction of motor vehicle lanes, new median islands, new bike lanes, installation of rapid flash beacon, new crosswalks, a bus stop improvement, and even a new path to connect bikers and walkers to the forthcoming Gibbs Street Bridge.

ODOT project manager Robert Hopewell says they started looking at this area three years ago after getting feedback from local residents and business owners. After launching an in-depth analysis of how Kelly Ave was being used, Hopewell says, “We determined we had a facility that seemed out of date for what it’s being used for today and that we could remove a southbound lane on Kelly Ave.”

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Lacking funds, City pauses on new South Waterfront path

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A new path with separated space for biking and walking
was set to begin construction here this summer. But
a lack of funds has changed that plan.

The City of Portland Parks & Recreation bureau announced this morning that a $2 million funding gap has put their plans for the South Waterfront Greenway project on hold. While the City has obtained all necessary permits and the final design of the trail was officially approved earlier this month, Parks has been unable to come up with the money.

The $8 million project — which will include significant environmental restoration and riverfront access improvements along with the paved biking and walkings paths — is funded by a variety of sources including TriMet, the Portland Development Commission, and private developers. The project is noteworthy because the path would be the City’s first that physically separated bikers from walkers — something that is seen as increasingly important as our local paths burst at the seams with users.

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ODOT set to unveil plans for I-5 expansion near Rose Quarter (Tonight)

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N NE Quadrant plans at BAC-3

ODOT and PBOT planners presented the
designs to the Bike Advisory Committee
last month.
(Photo © J. Maus)

ODOT, in partnership with PBOT, will unveil their plans for a I-5 freeway expansion project near the Rose Quarter at an open house in the Lloyd Center Mall tonight.

The plan, which is being done as part of the larger Central City 2035 and N/NE Quadrant plans, would add about 1,500 feet of additional lanes (in each direction) and a breakdown shoulder on I-5 between the I-84 interchange through the Rose Quarter. In addition, a host of other changes are being considered that will have a dramatic impact on surface streets and mobility in the area in general.

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Sullivan’s Gulch misses out on funding opp: Here’s what made the cut

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Detail of proposed
improvements to SW Barbur Blvd.

ODOT has whittled down a list of 89 “non-highway transportation projects” vying for $21 million in federal flexible funds, to just 35. Three City of Portland projects have made it onto the second round; but unfortunately, a project that could have built the first segment of the Sullivan’s Gulch Corridor did not make the cut.

With cities around the state clamoring for federal funds as their local budgets shrink, the competition is fierce. ODOT received requests totaling $89 million for the $21 million in available funds, which the state has set aside specifically for “non-highway” projects.

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Morrison Bridge bikeway set to reopen permanently December 5th

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December 5th!
(Photo © J. Maus)

Multnomah County confirmed today that the biking and walking path on the Morrison Bridge will re-open permanently on December 5th. The path has been closed since early June while contractors work to replace the bridge’s steel grating due to safety concerns.

The project was supposed to be completed by mid-September but has been delayed due what The Oregonian refers to as a “messy environmental and bureaucratic fight.”

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Steepness, stairs will limit bike access on new Waud Bluff Trail

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Detail of new sign
that will be posted at
entrance to Waud Bluff Trail.

Next Tuesday, officials from the City of Portland Parks and Recreation bureau will join community leaders at a groundbreaking ceremony for the Waud Bluff Trail; a short, paved path that will connect North Portland and Swan Island near the University of Portland.

After six years of waiting, Swan Island businesses, trail advocates, and thousands of residents eager for safer and more direct access to the Willamette River have rejoiced at seeing this project move forward.

Unfortunately, for people riding bikes (and others using wheeled modes of transport), the trail will present several challenges.

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