Traffic Advisory: Crews working for PBOT to begin corner ramp replacements in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) ahead of SW Fourth Avenue paving

Press Release
The first phase of curb ramp upgrades will occur on SW Fourth Avenue between Grant and Mill streets
Published
A pedestrian crosses SW Fourth Avenue at Hall Street, walking over patched, failing pavement next to an out-of-date curb ramp. The 80+ year-old historic ornamental streetlight in the background will also be replaced with a modernized replica as part of the improvements on the corridor.
A pedestrian crosses SW Fourth Avenue at Hall Street, walking over patched, failing pavement next to an out-of-date curb ramp. The 80+ year-old historic ornamental streetlight in the background will also be replaced with a modernized replica as part of the improvements on the corridor.

(May 8, 2024) The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) advises the traveling public that work upgrading corner ramps to the latest Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards on SW Fourth Avenue will begin next week in advance of planned paving on the corridor as part of the SW Fourth Avenue Improvement Project. Contractors working on behalf of PBOT will be upgrading ramps on SW Fourth between SW Grant and Mill streets in this first phase of work. Federal regulations require sidewalk corners be updated to modern accessibility standards in conjunction with paving projects.

To reduce the impact of construction on access to local businesses and on people walking and using mobility devices at these intersections, the contractor will work their way around each intersection removing and replacing corner ramps one-by-one whenever possible. Curb ramp construction will require intermittent lane closures and parking restrictions on SW Fourth Avenue for construction access. Intermittent closures of the adjacent sidewalks may be needed as well. Pedestrian detours will be implemented as needed throughout the duration of construction.

A street tree on SW Fourth Avenue across from the historic St. Michael's Catholic Church is surrounded by protective orange construction fencing ahead of construction.
A street tree on SW Fourth Avenue across from the historic St. Michael's Catholic Church is surrounded by protective orange fencing ahead of curb ramp construction. Photo by PBOT.

Travel lanes and adjacent businesses on SW Fourth Avenue will remain open during construction, but the traveling public is advised to expect delays. The public can expect dust, noise, vibrations, and heavy equipment near the work zone.

PBOT expects this first phase of corner ramp work to be completed this summer. Once complete, curb ramp upgrades will begin on SW Fourth Avenue between SW Mill Street and West Burnside. PBOT expects the full paving project to be complete in the late fall of 2025. 

We ask the public to travel slowly and cautiously in work zones, observe all detours and directions by reader boards and flaggers, and use alternate routes if possible. As always, please keep crews safe by following all traffic control signs and flaggers while travelling through or near work zones. Parking near the work zone will be restricted during construction. Vehicle, pedestrian, and bicycle access will be maintained.

This work is weather-dependent, and the schedule may change.

PBOT will provide periodic updates throughout construction. To sign up for construction updates, visit www.portland.gov/sw4thAve.

Thank you for your cooperation and patience while we complete this work.

About ADA-compliant curb ramps

ADA-compliant curb ramps have identified landings and ramp runs with specific dimensions or slopes that make them accessible to most people who use mobility devices. They are also very helpful for other users such as parents pushing a stroller or pulling a wagon, someone with rolling luggage, or deliveries using a cart or a hand truck. The yellow panel at the bottom of curb ramps provides both color and texture guidance for people who are blind or low vision. The texture tells someone using a white cane that they are transitioning from a pedestrian space, the sidewalk, to a vehicle space, the street or vice versa. The bright yellow color is one of the last colors someone who is losing their vision will see. It is also a warning color that is intended to communicate to drivers that they should be aware.