Background: the 3rd Avenue Road Reconfiguration Project
In 2015 a group of local businesses, neighborhood representatives, and social service providers joined together to create a consensus plan to improve the business environment along 3rd Avenue with a reconfigured roadway. The 3rd Avenue Road Reconfiguration Project sought to increase the daytime vitality of the neighborhood for residents, workers, and tourists by improving crossings for pedestrians, slowing vehicle speeds, and delineating space for people biking through Old Town. As a part of the plan, the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) installed 14 new crosswalks in the area.
The 2nd Avenue Road Reconfiguration Project
Following the successful implementation of the 3rd Avenue project last fall, the Old Town Chinatown Community Association (OTCTCA) requested that PBOT investigate the possibility of similar improvements to 2nd Avenue. PBOT’s evaluation found that a two-lane configuration (similar to the current configuration on 3rd Ave) would better achieve community goals and would not significantly delay people driving. The design will make pedestrian crossings more visible by limiting parking adjacent to key intersections. Additional parking spaces will be added on 2nd Avenue between NW Everett and Davis Street by upgrading to a modern parking meter (rather than the current coin-operated meter) and by removing the prohibition on parking on the NE end of the block. PBOT will test this new design in paint.
The community-endorsed plan will result in safer pedestrian crossings, a bicycle lane, and reduced speeding. The new two-lane configuration will clearly delineate spaces for pedestrians, cyclists and drivers to reduce conflicts and improve visibility. The new bike lane will be a left-side parking-protected design to increase comfort for a wider range of people riding bikes, such as tourists and families.
Timeline and Public Involvement
- October, 2015: OTCTCA requested PBOT evaluated 2nd Avenue
- May 11, 2016: PBOT presents findings and proposed design to OTCTCA
- May 30, 2016: OTCCA unanimously approves PBOT’s proposed design
- June 9, 2016: PBOT and OTCTCA representatives share proposal with 62 businesses via door-to-door outreach
- June 23, 2016: PBOT mails out project notification and invitation to a Public Open House to 1,400 businesses and residents adjacent to the project area
- June 29, 2016: Public Open House held at the White Stag Building
- July 7, 2016: PBOT revises design to incorporate public feedback
- August 6-7, 2016: Striping removal and painting of revised design
- August 10, 2016: Signage and marking work complete
- August 10, 2016: Planters installed at SW 2nd and Ankeny
- September 18, 2016: Concrete planters with signs installed
Ankeny Alley Plaza
In addition to the 2nd Avenue Road Reconfiguration Project, a public plaza connected to Ankeny Alley will be implemented this summer. PBOT and the Ankeny Alley Association are working together to create a plaza space on 3rd Avenue between Burnside and Ash Streets on the east side of the street.
Old Town Chinatown Community Association
For more information about becoming involved with transportation improvements in the neighborhood, please contact Old Town Chinatown Community Association Transportation & Mobility Committee at OTCTmobility@gmail.com.