A high crash corridor
All of 122nd Avenue is designated as a "high crash corridor" for pedestrians and people driving or biking. This means the street is on the top 30 list of streets with the highest number of severe crashes.
PBOT’s Vision Zero dashboard provides the most up-to-date information the bureau's efforts to eliminate deaths and serious injuries from Portland streets.
Over a five-year period, 122nd Avenue has seen 22 crashes of the type tracked by PBOT's Vision Zero team. This includes any fatal or serious crash involving people in vehicles, and all crashes involving pedestrians and people biking—per mile of roadway. Between January 2015 and December 2019, nearly half (47%) of these types of crashes along 122nd Avenue resulted in the death or injury of a pedestrian.
Between 2015–2019, 10 people died as victims of transportation-related violence. Three of them were pedestrians and seven of them were people driving. In 2020 and 2021, five more people died from transportation-related violence on 122nd Avenue, including two pedestrian, one person biking, and two people driving.
A closer look at crashes
The segments of 122nd Avenue with the highest number of crashes are between NE Halsey and SE Stark streets and between SE Division Street and Holgate Boulevard. Pedestrian crashes are one of the top two most common types of crashes along nearly all of 122nd Avenue. Speeding is also prevalent throughout the corridor. In some sections (like between NE Halsey and SE Stark streets) a large percentage of drivers are traveling more than 10 mph over the speed limit. This was the case before the speed limit was recently changed to 30 mph (between NE Sandy Boulevard and SE Foster Road).
The image below visualizes where Vision Zero crashes have occurred on the corridor between the years 2014 and 2018 (Vision Zero crashes include serious and fatal crashes involving people in vehicles, and all crashes involving pedestrians or people biking). It also illustrates crash "hot zones" or locations along the corridor that have relatively high numbers of crashes.
Sidewalks and wide driveways
The majority of 122nd Avenue has sidewalks on both sides of the street, but a small portion, between NE Marine Drive and NE Skidmore Street, has sidewalks only on one side of the street, or none at all. Quality of the these existing sidewalks varies. Many are narrow, deteriorated, and/or obstructed by utility poles. Some are wide with trees. See some examples here:
Meanwhile, there are many spots along the corridor with wide driveways. These driveways create conflict points between people driving and both pedestrians and people biking. Examples are circled in yellow in the photo below:
Bike lanes and streetlights
Many of the existing bike lanes are narrow (about 5 feet wide), unprotected from the other vehicle lanes, and as they approach most major intersections, drop off as they become a shared right-turn lane. See examples of this in the photos below:
One feature along 122nd Avenue that contributes to many concerns about personal safety is the gap between streetlights. According to city guidelines, streets 48 feet or wider, such as 122nd Avenue, should have lighting on bothsides of the street. The majority of 122nd Avenue has lighting only on one side of the street, which results in poor visibility. The image here shows where light falls from a streetlight on one side of the street and how poorly it covers the opposite sidewalk:
Bus stops and bus traffic
Many bus stops along 122nd Avenue are on narrow sidewalks that don't have enough space to place a bus shelter and still give pedestrians room to pass along the sidewalk.
Furthermore, buses often must move in and out of traffic and pull across the bike lane to reach bus stops.
All of the conditions on 122nd Avenue conspire so that people riding transit have a highly unpredictable experience, especially during rush hour or depending on what section of 122nd Avenue they're traveling on. Many wait longer for buses which are slower, or have to dwell at stops longer. The chart below shows this variability throughout the day. During the morning and midday, the biggest delays are between NE Glisan and SE Stark streets, indicated here in the darkest red bars. During the evening rush, the biggest delays are between NE Halsey Street and Holgate Boulevard.