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Most City of Portland offices will be closed Monday, May 27, in observance of Memorial Day.

PBOT Safe Routes to School May Newsletter

Newsletter
Published
Updated
Safe Routes to School in white text against an orange background with icons depicting a shoe, a scooter, a skateboard, a wheelchair, a bike and a bus.

Dear parents, caregivers, educators, and community,

This past month we've been blown away by all the activity in our Portland Safe Routes to School community. As you get ready for the last few weeks of the school year, we hope you can take in a little inspiration from your peers:

  • The Vestal Elementary School PTA started a bike and walk bus route that jams out every Wednesday morning in Montavilla. Volunteers from Naked Hearts PDX brought along their heart-shaped bike-powered mobile sound system, affectionately named "Lady Gertrude," to make the trip to school even more joyful and fun!
  • The Atkinson Elementary School community started their very own walking and biking school bus this month in the South Tabor neighborhood. They have multiple routes that help students get to school safely regardless of whether they live north or south of SE Division Street!
  • Portland Bureau of Transportation Commissioner Mingus Mapps joined dozens of James John Elementary School students on their walking and biking school bus. Spotted along the route: a custom flag, a guitar, and a dog wearing a lion costume!

If you want more people to know about the awesome walking, biking, and rolling events in your neighborhood, please reach out to us via emailFacebook, or Instagram.

With gratitude,
Safe Routes to School Team | Abra, Brittany, Dana, Gui, Janis, Lale, and Meaghan 


In this email:


SmartTrips to Middle School

Three students smiling at the camara in front of other students gathered outside school with text: "Activities and ideas and wellness tips for incoming 6th graders! Free swim pass! SmartTrips to Middle School!"

Calling all incoming 6th graders!

Congrats, soon-to-be graduates! Now that school is almost out, it's time to prepare for summer! Mobility is key to staying safe while having fun, and Safe Routes to School is here to help you know how to get to your upcoming summer adventures!

To sign-up, text MIDDLE to 888-520-0526. Don't have a cell phone? No problem. Email us at SafeRoutes@portlandoregon.gov with the subject line: MIDDLE.

SmartTrips to Middle School is a Safe Routes to School program designed to support safe travel. Students will be prompted to think about their transportation choices and plan for safety, and we’ll share resources to help them move around the city. They'll also have the opportunity to claim a FREE swim pass (while supplies last)!

Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Instagram, too!


SW Capitol Highway transforms High Crash Corridor to people-friendly street

A ground view rendering of SW Capitol Highway improvements showing the new sidewalk, bike lane, multiuse path, and crosswalks.

After 30 years of advocacy, the $27.5 million SW Capitol Highway - Multnomah Village to West Portland complete street retrofit project is nearly finished. This longtime community-priority project will transform one of Portland's High Crash Corridors to a people-friendly street. It will connect safe and desirable walking, biking, and rolling routes from Multnomah Boulevard to Taylors Ferry Road. In doing so, this SW Capitol Highway project will fill an active transportation gap. Now — for the first time — people will be able to travel safely without a car between Portland Community College Sylvania and downtown Portland.

Portland Bureau of Transportation teamed up with the Bureau of Environmental Services and Water Bureau to deliver this transformational project. In addition to stormwater management facilities and larger, more seismically resilient water pipes, project elements include:

  • a six-foot-wide continuous sidewalk on the east side of the street
  • a six-foot-wide sidewalk-level protected bike lane on the east side of the street
  • a nine-foot-wide multiuse path on the west side of the street
  • a reduced 25 mph speed limit and curbs to calm traffic and make the street safer for everyone
  • new striping and crosswalks
  • improved bus stops with ADA wheelchair ramps

The shining star of this SW Capitol Highway project is the sidewalk-level protected bike lane. This world-class facility is the preferred type of protected bike lane design in Portland. And project staff estimate that the stretch of sidewalk-level protected bike lane on SW Capitol Highway may be the longest in the city. The new bike lane will be an enhanced experience for bicyclists who will ride completely off and above the main roadway. 

A panoramic photo of current view of SW Capitol Highway project showing the completed sidewalk on the left, the travel lanes in the center, and the bike lane and multiuse path on the right.

Before construction started in 2021, people walking, biking, and rolling lacked safe access along this segment of SW Capitol Highway. Without sidewalks, pedestrians resorted to using gravel shoulders that were often disrupted with mud puddles and overgrown vegetation. In 1993, the conditions on SW Capitol Highway were poor enough that Southwest Neighborhood Information (now Southwest Neighborhoods, Inc.) wrote to then City of Portland Commissioner Earl Blumenauer requesting improvements. Now, 30 years later, PBOT is finally delivering on their requests. 

Excerpt from a letter that reads "The local residents and business owners are very motivated and eager to transform this area from an auto-dominated environment to a pedestrian, bicycle and transit-friendly environment."

Upon completion, this SW Capitol Highway project will be one of the largest PBOT projects in recent memory. It is funded by Fixing Our Streets, the voter-approved ten-cent gas tax making streets safer for all, Transportation System Development Charges, contributions from Environmental Services and Water, and state bonds. 

To learn more on this SW Capitol Highway project, visit the project webpage


Upcoming events

Three children practicing bicycling on a playground hard-top surface with the assistance of two adults on a sunny day.

Northeast Cully Neighborhood Bike Fair

Get yourself ready to ride during the Northeast Cully Neighborhood Bike Fair! Join the Portland Bureau of Transportation and Sunday Parkways crew at Rigler Elementary School on Friday, June 2 from 2:15 pm to 5:15 p.m. for free activities and resources:

  • Learn-to-ride activities for children and adults
  • Quick fix bike repair station
  • Bike safety education
  • BIKETOWN, Portland's e-bike share program, signup table

Participants are welcome to bring their own bikes or borrow one during the event. 

Play Streets

This pilot program turns streets in the Argay Terrace and Parkrose Heights neighborhoods into pop-up community hubs for intergenerational socializing, play, and physical activity with music, snacks, games, and a bouncy house! Catch the last Play Streets of the season on their respective dates and locations from 2:15 to 4:15 p.m.:

  • Near Sacramento Elementary School on NE 112th Avenue between Weidler and Schuyler streets - Friday, June 2
  • Near Shaver Elementary School on NE 134th Avenue between Shaver Street and Prescott Drive - Friday, June 9

SW Strolls

SW Strolls is a monthly community walk. Connect with your neighbors every first Saturday of the month and discover hidden gems in your backyard! The next stroll is on Saturday, June 3. They've designed the route to be flexible — you're welcome to join at any point. 

  • 9 a.m. - Meet at Little Gabriel Park for Section A.
  • 10 a.m. - Meet at Barbur World Foods for Section B
  • 11 a.m. - Enjoy a social hour in Multnomah Village after the stroll to connect with neighbors

Northeast Cully Sunday Parkways

Celebrate community on June 25 between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. at Northeast Cully Portland Sunday Parkways! This year's route meanders along neighborhood greenways and crosses a few business districts, most notably on Northeast 42nd and Alberta. 

And remember: there is no starting or finishing point — you can hop on wherever you like!

Stay in the loop by texting "Cully" to 888-520-0526 to receive event updates and exciting information about entertainment and activities throughout the day.

Pedalpalooza

This unique-to-Portland festival is made up of hundreds of different bike events that are organized by people just like you. Pedalpalooza BIKE SUMMER kicks off June 1 and runs all the way through the end of August.

Last year community members hosted about 600 family-friendly rides. Rides designed with kids in mind are marked with a "Family Friendly" tag on the online calendar. Here are a few rides we found that we can't wait to join:


What we're reading

  • Eye-opening video explains why children stopped walking to school and why that trend should end (Upworthy)
  • Creating safe streets for all users takes community engagement, funding, transportation leaders say (Smart Cities Dive)
  • Creating intergenerational connections while improving health with Safe Routes to Parks (Safe Routes Partnership)
  • Oregon wants to help you buy a new e-bike (City Cast Portland)
  • How every government in American could stop its own cars from speeding (Streetsblog)
  • American road deaths show an alarming racial gap (New York Times)
  • Taking back Texas' streets (Texas Observer)
  • The surgeon general says loneliness is as deadly as smoking (Vox)

Job and volunteer postings

1. Active Transportation and Safety Division Manager: Portland Bureau of Transportation's Active Transportation and Safety Division is responsible for coordinating the active transportation and traffic safety programs. The division's programs and projects are designed to promote, encourage, and build a safe and convenient system that serves the transportation needs of all Portlanders. Closing 5/29/2023. Job posting here.

2. Portland in the Streets Technician: Portland Bureau of Transportation is seeking applicants to provide day-to-day leadership and work with staff to ensure a high-performance, customer service orientated work environment. Portland in the Streets processes permits for several programs that have a goal of getting Portlanders outside building community and enjoying the street space. Closing 5/29/2023. Job posting here.

3. Climate Action Assistant Project Manager: The Portland Clean Energy Community Benefits Fund program advances climate, economic, racial and social justice. The Bureau of Planning and Sustainability and the fund are hiring for two position to provide a range of activities to support the management of grants with community-based organizations, contracts with service providers, and grant review activities. Closing 5/29/2023. Job posting here.

4. Renewable Fuel Standard Technical Advisory Committee: This committee will advise the Office of Community & Civic Life of any technical or economic issues associated with renewable fuel supply when it comes to meeting minimum fuel content requirements and carbon intensity standards. Closing 6/4/2023. Volunteer posting here.

5. Street Cleaning Program Manager: This position provides equitable leadership while planning, organizing, and managing Portland Bureau of Transportation Maintenance Operations division's dynamic workload. This position manages all routine maintenance routes, seasonal maintenance, and elimination of hazards as reported by the public. Closing 6/5/2023. Job posting here.

6. Transition Engagement Coordinator: This position will develop, implement, and manage opportunities for the community to be engaged in the once-in-a-generation chance to transform local government. This position ensures open and consistent communication and engagement and ensuring community input is meaningfully integrated into the city’s transition. Closing 6/12/2023. Job posting here.

The City of Portland updates it's job opportunities list weekly. Make sure to check out those new positions every Monday!