PORTLAND -- The Portland Bureau of Transportation plans to turn a stretch of Northwest Everett Street from two lanes of auto traffic into one, to make room a new bicycle lane.
City officials said the change will make the area safer for both cyclists and pedestrians.
Here’s the plan:
- Between Northwest 23rd and 19th, the existing left auto lane will become a bike-only lane.
- Parking will stay the same, but drivers will only be able to use the right lane.
Diane Dulken with the Portland Bureau of Transportation said traffic studies show one lane of traffic is enough for that stretch of roadway.
“You'll have a longer line, but the traffic flow should be smoother,” explained Dulken.
Another change will happen between Northwest 19th and the I-405 overpass. There, the bike lane will continue on the left, but drivers will get back the two lanes.
Dulken said there have been too many close calls at the intersection with cars turning right and cyclists going straight, and moving the bike lane to the other side of the street should solve that.
But some people who live and work in the area have complained that the change will make Everett a congested mess.
“I think it’s an awful idea actually,” said Mike Miller who works near Northwest 23rd and Everett. “It’s going to be more of a hassle for people who drive to be honest. I think more people drive down Everett than they do ride their bikes.”
Others hoped that the bike-only lane will entice more cyclists to come to the area and shop the businesses.
“I’d love to see more bikes,” said Joe Perrone who also lives and works in the area. “Bikes allow more people to come through the city and see the neighborhood and enjoy the economy and that kind of stuff.”
That stretch of Everett has already been repaved. The city plans to re-stripe it early this summer.