The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) is building pedestrian safety improvements on N Columbia Blvd between N Midway and N Macrum Avenues.
What's Happening Now
Phase I is complete. This phase included the new signal at N Columbia Blvd. and Bank with sidewalk infill.
Phase II will start construction in summer of 2020. This phase includes two islands on N Columbia Blvd. at the intersections of Midway and Oregonian, and street lighting on Columbia Blvd from N. Bank to Macrum.
Columbia Blvd is a High Crash Corridor. PBOT is committed to making Columbia Blvd a safer street for everyone.
On August 30, 2016, a student from Roosevelt High School crossed Columbia Blvd and, tragically, was hit by a car. With the help of Oregon Speaker of the House Tina Kotek, PBOT was granted $1.5 million to update and improve a pedestrian crossing at Columbia Blvd near George Middle School.
In the Fall of 2017, PBOT hosted an open house at Roosevelt High School and presented the community with several pedestrian crossing designs with the intention of having the community choose their favored design. Additional project presentations were held with the Freight Committee, George Middle School students and teachers, and the St. Johns Neighborhood Association. PBOT also reached out door to door to neighbors living on N Bank St to discuss the project and options. The project description and options were also mailed to residents of the St. Johns neighborhood.
The results of public outreach revealed that most people wanted a safe pedestrian crossing with either a full traffic signal or a HAWK signal (red light signal activated by pedestrians only) at a minimum.
Due to concerns from the community, PBOT is also recommending the installation of two access management islands on Columbia Blvd at N Midway and N Oregonian Aves. Nearly half the traffic from N Columbia Blvd turns left on N Midway Ave to access the local neighborhood. By eliminating the left-turn access from N Columbia Blvd to N Midway Ave and N Oregonian Ave, we will be forcing traffic to use the existing traffic signal at N Macrum Ave. Installing these two islands will also lead to modifications to the timing of the existing signal at N Macrum Ave.
PBOT put together two options for a safe pedestrian crossing that included a pedestrian-activated signal. Based on public feedback, PBOT is moving forward with Option A (see below).