News Release: Safer bicycling, walking coming to NW Broadway this fall

News article

The latest Central City in Motion project will feature a new family-friendly bike route to and from the Broadway Bridge

Published
A rendering of the future NW Broadway at NW Davis Street, facing north.
The new NW Broadway will support the dynamic needs of Downtown Portland throughout the day. Two southbound travel lanes will be available during the morning rush. At all other times, one of the southbound lanes will be available for parking and loading. Illustration by PBOT.

(Sept. 22, 2020) Safer bicycling, walking, and faster buses are coming to NW Broadway. The result will be quicker trips for bus riders and safer travel for bicyclists and pedestrians. The change will also help people who drive, by separating car and bicycle traffic.

NW Broadway project map

Construction will begin on Oct. 3 and is expected to last eight weeks.

The project improves NW and SW Broadway from the Broadway Bridge to SW Oak Street, creating a signature northbound bike facility on Broadway. Signal retiming on 5th and 6th avenues will further improve bus speed and reliability. Earlier in 2020, TriMet’s Line 17, which crosses the Broadway Bridge into downtown as part of its route connecting Northeast Portland through downtown to the Powellhurst neighborhood in Outer Southeast, received transit priority treatments with a reroute to the Transit Mall on 5th and 6th avenues.

“I am so pleased to see another Central City in Motion project moving forward,” said Transportation Commissioner Chloe Eudaly. “These improvements will make active transportation and transit use easier and more reliable in Old Town. Better connections for people who bike or bus create better outcomes for transportation safety, equity, and sustainability.”

“Safe, reliable transit service will be more important than ever as the region’s economy recovers and people get back to work and return to activities,” said TriMet General Manager Doug Kelsey. “We’re grateful for partnerships like this one, with PBOT, that will help make the transportation network work better for all road users including our buses.”

The new street will support the dynamic needs of Downtown throughout the day. Two southbound travel lanes will be available during the morning rush. At all other times, one of the southbound lanes will be available for parking and loading. The new upgrade also reduces potential conflicts between buses, cars and bikes.

“Building safe places for Portlanders to bike is more important than ever,” said Ryan Hashagen, Owner of Icicle Tricycles, a manufacturing business located in Old Town. “These new protected bike lanes will provide Portlanders a safe and healthy way to travel along Broadway and support the many incredible businesses here.”

The new northbound protected bike lane will separate people biking from other vehicles. This will improve safety for all people traveling on this High Crash Corridor. Research shows that protected bike lanes can reduce crashes by 40%. 

The new design will bring significant safety improvements to NW Broadway at NW Hoyt Street. A downhill slope contributes to a history of collisions between people driving and bicycling in this area. The new design prohibits right turns onto NW Hoyt Street to remove the risk of right hook collisions for people walking and biking.

Additionally, shorter crossing distances and upgraded crosswalks in key areas will improve safety and visibility for pedestrians.

“We’re excited to see another project from our early advocacy come to fruition,” said Ashley Henry, Business for a Better Portland Executive Director. “Investments in sustainable, equitable transportation – like those coming to NW Broadway – support small businesses and support Portlanders with the least ability to choose how they get around.”

“This partnership with PBOT allows us to make the most of limited transportation resources,” said Metro Council President Lynn Peterson. “These are the smart investments our region needs to address climate change and improve the equity, safety and reliability of our transportation system. Metro is pleased to be a funding partner in PBOT’s Central City in Motion.”

How will parking work?  

Parking will be available on the west side of the street between the bike lane and the travel lane. A similar design was first implemented on SW Broadway next to the Portland State University campus in 2009. PBOT has also installed parking protected bike lanes on SW Capitol Highway and N Rosa Parks Way, as well as other locations.

When parking, park parallel to the white posts in marked spaces. Follow all posted parking restrictions. 

On the west side of NW Broadway, parking and loading zones will be available all hours of the day, except 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. Monday to Friday. During the morning rush, parking will be prohibited. From 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. the street will accommodate a second travel lane for southbound traffic. 

To provide the space for the new protected bike lanes, parking on the east side of the street will be removed. 

PBOT will also install one modular platform island to support people accessing services at Central City Concern. The platform will improve accessibility for passengers loading and unloading from vehicles on Broadway north of Burnside.

Central City in Motion and Rose Lane Project

NW Broadway Bus/Bike Improvements is a Central City in Motion and Phase I Rose Lane Project.

The Rose Lane Project is a citywide effort to get buses and streetcar trains out of traffic, helping more Portlanders get where they need to go more reliably and quickly. 

The Rose Lane Project report was adopted by City Council in February 2020, and PBOT is now working on implementation. The Rose Lane project identified corridors where a range of transit priority treatments can be used to get buses and streetcars out of traffic. NW Broadway is one of these corridors.

Traffic impacts during construction  

During construction, there will be temporary lane and parking restrictions on NW Broadway between the Broadway Bridge and SW Oak Street. Sidewalks will remain open. Bicycle and auto traffic will be directed to share a travel lane.

Construction will last approximately eight weeks. Work hours will include days, evenings, and weekends. On Saturday, Oct. 3 and Sunday, Oct. 4, NW Broadway will be closed on a block-by-block basis between NW Irving Street and West Burnside to motor vehicles from approximately 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. to grind down pavement markings in preparation for project construction.

When traveling in the construction zone:

  • Use caution and go slow
  • Observe all lane closures and directions by reader boards and flaggers
  • Use alternate routes if possible

For more information, including project manager and contractor contact information, visit the project website at https://www.portland.gov/nw-broadway

Special note regarding Covid-19 and construction work

PBOT has been in modified operations since March 17 and has implemented specific measures to ensure the safety of our crews and contractors. This includes modified shifts, social distancing, and other precautions based on current guidelines from local, state, and federal health officials. Thank you for giving our crews the space and time they need to keep our city moving.

About Central City in Motion

Central City in Motion is PBOT’s effort to plan, prioritize, and implement transportation improvements in the city’s core. Following two years of public engagement, 18 projects were prioritized through this planning effort and approved by Portland City Council in 2018. Learn more at www.portland.gov/transportation/policy-and-planning/ccim