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Thursday, October 29, 2009

Be part of the circus

Portland's mystery layer of government, Metro, is still out there asking folks how mass transit between Lake O and Portland should be improved -- add a few more buses onto the Tri-Met 35 line on Route 43, or build a streetcar. These meetings have been going on for years now, and there's a new round in the offing.

As a big fan of comedy, I enjoy this joke. Like they haven't already decided on the shiny train set. And all the condo madness that will follow, all up and down Macadam Avenue. Never mind what it will do to auto traffic, which along that street is already screwed up. Never mind how much cheaper and easier the bus alternative would be. It's all about the developer weasels, and that means it's all about the streetcars. This is what the Goldschmidt lieutenants at Metro do -- they make the millions for the old boys of Portland real estate.

That's bad enough. But after a while, the whole "public input" charade gets offensive.

Comments (16)

It should be fun to watch. In this case, a rickety, narrow rail line snakes through the front yards of a few Dunthorpe swells between the river and Highway 43. They're definitely looking for more rail traffic.

The dudes in Dunthorpe, Briarwood, and Riverdale are already in a lather. My opinion on this is in the form of a question: "What part of railroad line did you misunderstand when you bought your home?". I live in LO and would personally love to see a light rail line alone HWY 43 and downtown. But I would settle for better bus service. Disclaimer: my daughter attends Riverdale HS as a tuition paying student. I don't have any sympathy for the folks affected by this.

Putting a MAX through L.O.? Better get the window-bars and alarm upgrades on all those McMansions! MAX does little more than give the criminal element a chance to explore new opportunities in fresh surroundings..

So some of the Dunthorpe elite will have a train going by their front window? Well, isn't that the 'transit-oriented housing' that Portland planners talk up so much? Now they can convert their upstairs into 'affordable' lofts and put coffee shops and bookstores on the main level!

That sure sounded familliar.
Maybe I heard
"I live in Wilsonville and would personally love to see a commuter rail line to Beaverton, connecting to MAX/downtown. But I would settle for better bus service."

That's good enough for Metro, TriMet and the clones on the LO city council.

The taxpaying public demands a Streetcar line.

I hope that commentators here realize that this proposed trolley line affects much more than just Dunthorpe.

The consequences to the Johns Landing, Fulton, Corbett neighborhoods along Macadam between I-5 and the Willamette River will be devastating. A good portion of the this narrow, long strip (five blocks wide on avereage) from the Spaghetti Factory to Sellwood Bridge along our precious (ha) Willamette River will be rezoned with tall buildings, condos to heaven, and historical neighborhoods killed. All for the mighty dollar, and the ruination of what Portland once was all about.

Go for it Planners and Politicians.

Screw Portland, create more congestion, obliterate our Greenway along the Willamette, forget the topography of this special part of Portland and forget the history of these neighborhoods that were created at the same time Portland was a clearing in the woods four mile north. We shouldn't care, should we?

I'm not exactly sure how they'll be able to insert it but ...

remember Jack - it's for the children.

(There now they can do anything they want)

As a long time resident of LO I am appalled/frustrated at the idea of a streetcar instead of just better bus service. Streetcars are $low $low $low. When we go downtown we avoid the streetcars as you can make better time on foot. I have suggested many times that the powers that be look at linking up LO and West Linn with the SE light rail that will eventually go to Oregon City. Having a bridge go over to link up with a transit center in each town or at least in LO would be cheaper and less impactive to Hwy 43 traffic and to the Johns Landing neighborhood.
The folks in Dunthorpe have always known that they would have that railine in their backyards. What (to me) would be a win win is if there could be an agreement
between the Dunthorpe folks and LO/Metro
to allow the railine to stay as a bike path and walking path. Right now if the railine is abandoned the land reverts back to the neighboring properties. If I were them I'd rather have a quiet bike path than a streetcar. Of course it would have to be policed by "gendarmes on bikes"
Our current city council is led by a Mayor who seems to have a hidden agenda. But, now that I have read your BLOG I think I know what his agenda is......

"Putting a MAX through L.O.? Better get the window-bars and alarm upgrades on all those McMansions! MAX does little more than give the criminal element a chance to explore new opportunities in fresh surroundings.."

So MAX causes crime? Then what do cars do? Someone's going to break into your home and clear it out, then hold a TV set under their arm waiting for transit?

Cars bring just as much crime to neighborhoods as any other mode of transportation.

The public hearings are fun!

Watching the poor hapless citizens actually going and trying to present contrary points of view is quite entertaining.

Now if they had been following some of the blogs around this city they would have known that they are just wasting their time.

The "max causes crime" hysteria is complete nonsense by the way.

Adron Hall of the TRANSIT SLUETH blog did a study on this and found that theory is complete nonsense.

The rail right-of-way means that, at most, it will run on Macadam for 5 blocks. Also, the streetcar to Lake Oswego will be much faster than it is downtown, but it is true that people are arguing that it still will be slower than the 35.

Overall, the real issue is that they had the foresight to save the rail line a couple decades ago, and not being to use it in the end would be tough.

Yes, thank goodness they saved it so that the streetcar weasels can blow another nine figures of public money on something nobody wants.

Jason, the 5 blocks on Macadam is not correct. It's more. And wouldn't even 5 blocks on Macadam cause all kinds of increased congestion? Are you aware that three intersection of streets with Macadam in this area are at "F" (failure) level of service? Are you aware that vehicle trips on Macadam are at approx. 44,000 trips per day, and that PDOT has estimated that SoWhat will add close to 35,000 trips to that total?

Since you work for the city, could you address the upzoning, increased density that will occur because of the mandated higher density and subsidies for Transit Orient Development? This increased density along Macadam will even add more vehicle trips beyond that cited above.

The topography, the impossible means of redirecting traffic in this area is nil. There are no outlets, other ways to move traffic through this tight corridor hemmed in by the Willamette and the West Hills and no street outlets.

Isn't this what Planning is all about-thinking of the obvious?

The main problem with making the Portland-to-Lake Oswego streetcar more than a curiosity is that most of the line can't be upgraded to double tracks, so service would be limited to one train at a time.

It would be possible to put short stretches of double track, for passing points, in Willamette Park and Powers Marine Park, but almost nowhere else, without erasing a strip of homes or businesses from one side or the other. Without having double track, the LO line can't provide the fast and frequent service that trolley riders have come to know and love.

"Fast and frequent service that trolley riders have come to know and love." Are you high?

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