Tag: PBOT

82nd Ave Now 100 Percent Portland

Yesterday, Portland City Council voted unanimously to adopt 82nd Avenue into the City’s network of streets. This jurisdictional transfer moves seven miles of State Highway 213, from NE Killingsworth Street to SE Clatsop Street, into the Portland Bureau of Transportation’s (PBOT) control. Additionally, the ordinance accepts $80 million in American Rescue Plan Act funding for necessary improvements on 82nd Avenue.

Yesterday’s vote completes years of community initiatives and governmental negotiations regarding the future of this neglected highway. Years of differed maintenance and insufficient investment by the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) left the roadway in poor condition, even as the north to south connector became the busiest street in the City.

TriMet’s number 72 bus line on 82nd Avenue boasts the highest ridership of any route in the public transit system. More than 20,000 vehicle trips occur per day on the road. Due to the deteriorating conditions and traffic volume, 82nd Avenue experiences some of the highest crash rates in Portland. Over the next few years, PBOT intends to use the initial funding to improve safety for pedestrians and drivers alike.

Already identified projects for 82nd Avenue will begin soon, now that this legislative milestone has passed. PBOT will deliver new lighting, safer pedestrian crossings, pavement repair, and sidewalk accessibility upgrades. In some cases, large sections of the road surface will need reconstruction. Most of the curbside lanes of the highway lack a concrete base layer. The original construction of OR213 supported just one travel lane in each direction with a shared center turning lane. Engineers designed the outer edges of the road for parking, not the heavy demands of traffic. 

Projects funded by yesterday’s approved ordinance only represent the beginning of upgrades expected in the area. Around 2026, ODOT will deliver a second payment to Portland, totaling $70 million. Along with the City’s pledged $35 million, this second $105 million wave of investment will enact more safety and livability improvement along 82nd Avenue. Community and business engagement around those future projects will ramp up over the next few years.

The City of Portland created a website for residents and business owners to track the new Building a Better 82nd initiative. Look for opportunities to contribute to the planning of 82nd Avenue through online and in-person community forums, focus groups, and surveys. PBOT will also partner with existing community organizations to guide future projects and coordinate with the people affected by the coming changes to the streetscape.

East Burnside Lane Closure

Update: All lanes on E Burnside are open again after crews complete work for the day. Barricades block the gravel-filled hole made earlier.


Today, the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) closed the eastbound lane of E Burnside Street from SE 81st to 82nd Avenues. Road signs are directing blocked traffic onto SE 81st Avenue around the construction. The TriMet number 20 bus line is not affected by this closure and is permitted past the detour.

An excavator is currently removing broken pavement and digging a trench along the south curb. Crews have blocked the north driveways for the Chevron gas station and Hong Phat Food Center. However, both businesses have alternate vehicle access along other streets. Drivers should plan to avoid this area while work is underway. Additionally, bikes and pedestrians may need to find safe routes around the worksite.

This article will be updated with information from PBOT staff regarding the purpose and duration of this roadwork project.

Detour onto SE 81st Avenue for eastbound Burnside traffic near 82nd Avenue

PBOT Installs Permanent Slow Streets

Last summer, the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) announced that many Slow Streets Program sites would become permanent installations. This week, crews completed work on four of the five locations planned for Montavilla. Although some locations in this program replaced the temporary orange barrels with concrete planters, these four installations utilize an alternative design created to accommodate narrow streets.

PBOT completed work on SE Stephens street at 76th AvenueNE 71st at E Burnside, and both sides of SE 87th Avenue at Stephens Street. Each intersection features signage listing a 15-mile-per-hour speed limit and indicates that the road is shared between bicycles, pedestrians, and cars. In the center of the roadway, three Tuff Curb® Traffic Separator Curbs with an attached reflective lane delineator wand will limit a vehicle’s turning radius and force slower speeds. These bendable tubes push over if a car makes contact with them and rarely cause damage. PBOT believes the installation will initially limit the driver’s speed and calls attention to the street’s mixed uses designation.

Examples of permanent Slow Street concrete planter outside of Montavilla

Early examples of permanent Slow Street featured concrete planters with signage displaying the slower speeds on a pole in the center of the traffic diverter. Those installations ensured vehicles slowed down or risked damage to the car when navigating around them. However, when addressing streets in the Montavilla neighborhood, PBOT determined a different traffic calming option was required. “Some locations are either too narrow or have other operational challenges, like no parking lane, that required using an alternative design to the planters.” Said Hannah Schafer, PBOT’s Interim Director of Communications and Public Involvement. Schafer explained that many other neighborhoods have these space-constrained streets and will receive the same configuration seen in Montavilla.

SE 87th Avenue at SE Stephens street North

PBOT selected the five local streets in the Slow Streets program due to their prior designation as neighborhood greenways and one of several other criteria. Those added factors included roads lacking sidewalks or where people do not have access to parks and open spaces. The Slow Streets treatment could also help areas with higher traffic volumes or experience vehicle speeds that make it challenging to walk, bike, or roll. Since the early pandemic, these locations feature temporary traffic calming measures, and most sites have received praise from residents.

SE 87th Avenue at SE Stephens street South

As the Slow Streets program becomes permeant across the City, PBOT staff will need to evaluate the effectiveness of the alternative design. Similar installations throughout Portland show signs of vehicles driving over the delineators leaving tire marks on the reflective surface or breaking them off at the mounting point. However, the intent of this new infrastructure is not to immobilize a vehicle. It is simply to caution drivers to slow down when entering the roadway, and both Slow Streets designs may accomplish that goal. Keep an eye out for the new posted speed limit and use extra caution while driving through the Slow Streets.

NE 71st Avenue at E Burnside Street

SE 92nd Improvements at Lincoln Street

SE 92nd Avenue at SE Lincoln Street features an unusual and confusing intersection thanks to a southbound turnout lane. This poorly marked configuration creates ambiguous crossing points for cars, bikes, and pedestrians. This summer, the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) will implement several safety improvements and restructure this complicated “T” intersection.

Funded as part of the Fixing Our Streets Project, PBOT maintenance crews will add a marked crosswalk and a median refuge island on SE 92nd Avenue aligned with the southwest corner of SE Lincoln Street. Workers will repaint 250 feet of the bike lanes on both sides of SE 92nd Avenue to place riders against the curb. Eleven round cement lane separators will provide a protected buffer zone between the bike lane and automotive traffic near the intersection.

Image courtesy PBOT

As a result of the expanded bike lanes and pedestrian safety improvements, PBOT will create two new No Parking zones and extend one zone further south. This parking change will remove six curbside parking spaces. However, the lane reconfiguration will add back four new parking spaces. Newly painted buffer zones on the east side of SE 92nd Avenue will support two parking spaces located between the bike and northbound traffic lanes. The southbound turnout will provide space for two additional parking spaces on its eastern edge. When complete, PBOT expects the project to eliminate just two street parking spaces.

Pavement markings showing pending improvements and site of the new sidewalk on SE Lincoln

PBOT crews will add another new marked crosswalk to aid pedestrians crossing SE Lincoln Street when traveling on the west side of SE 92nd Avenue. This portion of the project will require a street corner reconstruction and the installation of 90 feet of new sidewalk. Much of SE Lincoln Street lacks consistent sidewalk infrastructure. Creating new Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliant ramps and a short sidewalk connector will facilitate a clear, protected path to the enhanced SE 92nd Avenue crossing point.

As a well-traveled route to Berrydale Park and nearby schools, this confusing intersection needs these safety updates. PBOT’s changes should provide clear paths for vehicles, bicycles, and pedestrians by using physical lane delineators in conjunction with road markings. Additionally, the median island will incentivize fast-moving motorists to slow down as the roadway narrows, giving them time to avoid potential collisions. Look for construction to begin in summer, and use caution while crews are working in the street.

Image courtesy PBOT

New Signal and Crossing at SE 80th and Division

Update – Crews recently installed the traffic signal mast-arm poles on the southern corners of SE 80th Avenue and SE Division Street. Soon workers will return to install the remaining two poles. Then city staff will place the new control box, signals, and LED street lights planned for this intersection. Within the next few months, this busy crossing will become available to pedestrians and cyclists who have struggled to use this space safely.


Update March 11th 2022 – Crews recently completed the south side curb ramps and sidewalk reconstruction at SE 80th and Division. Work has moved across the street to the north side of SE Division Street, spanning Portland Community College’s vehicle entrance. After concrete work completes, signal and painting specialists will add traffic control lights and new crosswalks to the intersection.

Southwest corner SE 80th and Division
Southeast corner SE 80th and Division

Original Article Published January 21st, 2022

Starting January 31st, crews with Raimore Construction will begin road work at the intersection of SE 80th Avenue and SE Division Street. This project adds traffic signals, marked crosswalks, and other safety measures for bikes and pedestrians. Work will continue through March, causing limited traffic delays in early February. This enhancement is part of the continuing Outer Division Safety Project between SE 80th to 174th avenues.

Portland Community College’s (PCC) southeast campus interrupts SE 80th Avenue at SE Division. The school’s parking lot entrance roughly aligns with the 80th along the college’s Division Street frontage. Currently, the intersection lacks signals, marked crosswalks, and ADA-compliant curb ramps.

PBOT bid document for SE 80th Ave and SE Division St with phase notes

Updates to this intersection will reconstruct all four street corners and provide gaps in the previously uninterrupted traffic flow. Crews will install new curb ramps, add high visibility crass-walk paint, and apply green-striped bike crossings where the SE Division bike lanes intersect 80th Avenue. This new crossing point creates additional connection opportunities to the 70s Neighborhood Greenway project scheduled to run through this area. Four signal poles will support eleven new traffic signals, providing aid to cyclists and pedestrians traversing the busy street. 

Around January 31st, crews will excavate a trench across SE 80th Avenue on the south side of SE Division Street. Cars turning onto SE 80th from Division Street or connecting with SE Division Street from 80th may experience lane closures. Between February 7th and 9th, trench work across SE Division at SE 80th will close down sections of SE Division street. However, traffic will be permitted in both directions during this work, with occasional lane diversions. Crews expect to close portions of PCC’s south parking lot entrance for a few days between February 10th and the 25th.

Pavement markings showing placement of new ADA curb ramps on southwest corner

Road flaggers will direct traffic during work hours, and plans strive for minimal impact on automotive traffic at the intersection. Work is scheduled between 7 AM and 3 PM, avoiding impact to the evening commute. In March, crews will install signal poles at the corners and complete other remaining work. This later construction should not affect vehicle traffic. However, pedestrians and bicycles may have minor detours.

Portland Bureau of Transportation engineers designed these infrastructure improvements to safely move all modes of travel through an increasingly active intersection. Commuters along SE Division have grown accustomed to this type of construction activity as the multi-year-long improvement project nears completion. When driving through this area, use caution and plan for additional travel time during work hours.

View from PCC parking lot south entrance looking across SE Division down SE 80th Ave

SE 90th Improvements at Morrison

During the 2022 roadwork season, the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) intends to reconstruct four corners at an intersection and repave a one-block segment of SE 90th Avenue. Crews will remove the existing curb ramps and sidewalk corners at SE Morrison Street and 90th, replacing them with new ADA compliant infrastructure. This updated path improves conditions for residents traveling to Berrydale Park and students commuting to the adjacent school.

Portland Maps image showing repaving segment on SE 90th

Decades ago, road crews constructed SE 90th Avenue from Morrison Street to Taylor Street with gravel gutters in the parking lane at the road’s edge. Although the street has sidewalks, curbs, and paved travel lanes, it lacks the supportive road surface expected in modern streets. PBOT will address one block of this deteriorated infrastructure from SE Morrison Street to SE Yamhill Street this year, with the remaining roadway repair waiting for a future budget allocation.

Existing SE Morrison Street and 90th with older curb ramps

Intersection reconstruction on these blocks takes a slightly different form from most Portland streets. This area of the City features six to eight-foot-wide planting zones between the sidewalk and curb. Most city streets only support four-foot green zones. Consequentially, these corners feature planting cutouts and long ramp approaches. At other nearby intersections with similar dimensions, PBOT removed the added planting zone and created sweeping corners at near double the size seen in other locations.

SE 88th Avenue and Morrison Street post corner reconstruction

Expect work on SE 90th Avenue between Morrison and Yamhill Streets sometime this summer or early fall. Detours for both cars and pedestrians will occur during construction. When the work is complete, all community members should experience improved access through this section of the neighborhood.

Existing SE Morrison Street and 90th without curb ramps

New Curb Ramps at NE 84th and Pacific

The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) will install new ADA compliant curb ramps at NE 84th Avenue and Pacific Street. The T intersection lacks updated pedestrian infrastructure, with current street corners in poor condition. Due to the enhanced 82nd Avenue signalized crossing onto NE Pacific Street, the City is prioritizing this roadway as a preferred pedestrian path. These improvements will make it a universally accessible route for people not traveling by car.

Northwest corner at NE 84th Avenue and Pacific Street

This intersection is adjacent to Multnomah University‘s Ambassador Housing and the school’s new soccer field site. Both neighborhood amenities attract considerable foot traffic beyond what is attributed to local residents, making this update of significant use to the community. Although PBOT staff recently painted the pavement detailing the ramp designs, a project like this can take months before work begins. Look for minor pedestrian detours while construction is underway.

South ramp location on NE Pacific Street at 84th Avenue

SE 82nd and Division Bus Stop Rebuild

Update – Crews have partially completed the bus stop reconstruction on SE Division Street at SE 82nd Avenue. Their progress reveals a design change for this station that will route bike riders behind the bus shelter instead of keeping bikes on the roadway. In this design, pedestrians will need to cross the raised bike lane to enter the bus platform.

Project documents from 2019 indicated that this location would implement a Pedestrian Bypass Station design, but work completed to date suggests workers are creating an Island Station. Consequently, crews are relocating the crosswalk signal currently in the middle of the future bicycle path. Despite this station’s changes, designers have maintained the sidewalk cutout to support replacement street trees near the bank building.

The final design will become apparent within the next few weeks as concrete work completes. As one of the last stations constructed in the Division Transit Project, it signals the imminent arrival of faster bus service. Look for TriMet FX™ (Frequent Express) service to begin in September 2022.


Original article published March 5th, 2022

This week, crews working on the Division Transit Project closed off traffic lanes on 82nd Avenue and SE Division Street as they demolished the intersection’s northwest corner. Workers removed two trees, a Trimet number 2 bus stop, and the drive-through exit driveway at Bank of the West. Soon TriMet will construct a new rapid bus station at this site and plant two new trees behind the bus shelter.

Bank of the West has two entry points to the financial institution’s parking lot, one on SE 82nd Avenue and another on SE Division Street. When the bank reworks their parking lot, drive-through ATM users will turn left, head back into the parking lot, and use either of the two remaining exits. Previously, users of the drive-through ATM could turn right and drive out onto Division through a third exit-only driveway. The longer articulated busses used in the Division Transit Project require more curbside space. Consequently, TriMet shifted the bus platform further west, blocking the drive-through exit path.

TriMet design plan for Division Transit Project. X marks removed trees and O indicates added trees.

This corner has ample sidewalk area, allowing TriMet to use its Pedestrian Bypass Station design. In that platform configuration, people walking past the stop have clear space to travel behind the waiting bus riders at the shelter. Additionally, this design allows bicyclists to ride past a parked bus in a separate lane to the left of the stop.

TriMet Pedestrian Bypass Station design

This latest TriMet work is one of the few reaming reconfigurations needed before the Division Transit Project begins service. Some limited use of the new bus stops will start in April, with full rapid bus service commencing later this year. A temporary number 2 bus stop is located less than 300 feet to the west form the construction site. Use cautions near this intersection and expect some delays over the next month.

Federal Funds to Support SE Stark-Washington Improvements

Portland City Council voted Wednesday to accept approximately $17 million in federal grants distributed by Metro through the Regional Flexible Funding Allocation program. One of the four new capital projects funded will impact Montavilla on the SE Stark Washington couplet. Portland will spend $11.4 million on the project, improving road conditions for all modes of travel between SE 92nd and 109th avenues.

The road work spans a busy section of the paired streets that crossover I205 and connects Montavilla to the Gateway Regional Center. Some of the planned improvements include new transit islands and bus lanes, protected bike lanes, improved pedestrian crossings at existing signals, a new pedestrian crossing at SE 105th Avenue, new ADA curb ramps, and street lighting. Work will also resurface or repair pavement. The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) believes this work will counter the historic auto-oriented street design at this location and reduce crashes in the area. Montavilla will receive only a tiny portion of the total improvements planned. However, the project will improve conditions for pedestrians, bicyclists, and public transportation users traveling the neighborhood. 

SE Washington Street at I205 south on-ramp

PBOT has not yet created the final plans for this project. However, the proposal contains several illustrations demonstrating a rough outline of possible changes. During the project’s design phase, City engineers will likely need to adjust the placement and scale of these improvements. However, staff based the budget on including these features in the approximate locations indicated in the documents submitted to City Council.

PBOT illustrated view of street improvements

When completed, residents will see SE Stark street gaining protected bike lanes continuing west across the I205 overpass and ending at SE 92nd Avenue. Bike lane crossings and crosswalks will receive fresh high-visibility paint. Curbside parking will move further out into the street, allowing bikes to travel against the road’s edge behind a wide buffer of parked cars. Consequentially, the number 15 TriMet bus stop in front of Motel 6 will move onto a new transit island in line with the parked cars. This stop currently has a temporary bus platform that PBOT installed during the pandemic. Unlike the current design, the new island will allow bicycles to pass behind the bus stop and away from traffic.

Motel 6 number 15 bus stop and temporary platform

On Montavilla’s section of SE Washington Street, most work will focus on pavement repairs and some lane reconfiguration. PBOT intends to add a dedicated right turn lane for people merging onto I205 south. Crews will reconstruct and enlarge the corner adjacent to the turn lane to support pedestrians and bicycles. The new bike lane on SE Washington Street will place riders onto the sidewalk to cross at a more visible location.

Workers will install new bike signals with dedicated signage and upgrade the existing pedestrian signals. Drivers turning onto I205’s south on-ramp will have a new turn-only light with a “NO TURN ON RED” sign. Signalized intersections will receive new Advanced Transportation Controller (ATC) equipment to manage traffic flow intelligently throughout the day.

Road improvements like this can take years to materialize after funding. Portland prioritized this project in the Growing Transit Communities Plan, adopted in 2017. Design work and property owner engagements will come in the next year. However, securing $5,332,000 in grant money for this work should move this project forward at an increased pace. Look for updates on the project in the coming year.

SE Stark Street showing current bike lane moving to the curbside

PBOT Extends On-Street Seating and Public Plazas

At a press conference Monday, the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) announced plans to extend two pandemic relief programs and work to make them permanent. PBOT Director Chris Warner joined Transportation Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty to highlight the successes of the Healthy Businesses permits and Portland Public Street Plazas program. The free Healthy Businesses permits will extend through August 31st and then require businesses to pay a fee for parking space seating.

At this week’s event, Neil Mattson spoke about Montavilla’s successful Street Plaza and how both programs supported the neighborhood during difficult times. As president of the Montavilla/East Tabor Business Association, Mattson led the development of the community plaza on SE 79th Avenue. PBOT staff recognized this public gathering space as one of the program’s success stories and welcomed its return this season. Mattson confirmed the plaza’s restorative influence on the area. “It really showed that when we take back the street and we use it as a place for coming together, that it does build community.”

Neil Mattson, president of the Montavilla/East Tabor Business Association

Mattson further explained the essential service provided to the community through PBOT’s free permits for parking lane dining areas. “In Montavilla, we have 24 businesses currently offering outdoor seating. If we hadn’t had the ability to have the Healthy Businesses permits, those businesses, I’m pretty confident [they] would all be gone today.” The success of these fresh-air extensions of restaurants and bars is evident through how they transformed over time. What began as roped-off parking spaces soon grew into three-sided sheds dotting curbs throughout the neighborhood.

When PBOT first rolled out the program, they envisioned umbrellas and tents, not wood structures with corrugated roofs. The sturdy construction that indicates success could conflict with the Healthy Businesses program’s transition into a permanent City amenity. Starting September 1st, all permit holders will need to renew their permits for the program. The renewal process will include a compliance review that will likely require modifications to what businesses have constructed over the last two years.

Dylan Rivera, PBOT’s Public Information Officer, explained how businesses might need to adjust as the Healthy Businesses program matures. “There are people out there, businesses who put tables in the street without even coming to us for a permit, even though the Permit was free,” said Rivera. For those establishments, compliance will start with a permit application and reworking their space within the guidelines.

Other business owners have permits but obstructed the public right-of-way or constructed outdoor seating beyond what is allowed. PBOT has concerns that pedestrians and wheelchairs can not navigate the sidewalk through some seating configurations. Corrections will mostly center on maintaining the required six feet of sidewalk clearance. The more challenging conflicts will arise from overbuilt outdoor seating. “There are people out of compliance right now, and we need to have a conversation with them,” said Rivera.

PBOT will have conversations with permit holders throughout the spring and continue into the summer. The goal is to contain outdoor seating in temporary movable structures. “This summer, we’re hoping to start talking about what are some sensible guidelines to help with vision clearance, especially close to crosswalks and intersections, and what does temporary look like?” Said Rivera. “There’ll be lots of conversations and then warnings.”  

PBOT’s primary concern is for the preservation of safety and to maintain access to public spaces. Much of Portland’s infrastructure runs above the sidewalk or below the street, and utility workers need access along the road within a few days’ notice. Healthy Businesses seating areas must be able to move out of the way within that timeframe. PBOT is taking a soft approach to this transition. As the year moves closer to September, PBOT staff will speak to Healthy Businesses permit holders and provide guidance for the new rules. Dylan Rivera assures business owners that they are not pursuing imidate changes.

Although PBOT intends to make both programs permanent, the continuation of Healthy Businesses permits and the Street Plazas Program are contingent on funding from the Portland City Council. The long-term success of these community-strengthening initiatives is dependent on their inclusion in the City’s 2022-23 budget. Commissioner Hardesty encouraged Portlanders to voice their support for these PBOT programs to her fellow City Council members. Over the next six months, look for the return of Street Plazas and subtle changes to outdoor seating as businesses prepare for compliance requirements.


Disclosure – The author of this article serves on the Montavilla/East Tabor Business Association Board.