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Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Portland: We block streets, not pave them

The latest joy from the Sam Adams transportation department is coming soon to the Lloyd District. They're going to knock NE Multnomah Boulevard down from five car lanes to three:

A road diet project for Multnomah Blvd emerged from a public process designed to develop a high-quality east-west bikeway through the Lloyd District on NE Holladay. When a representative from powerful real estate development firm Ashforth Pacific was the sole dissenting vote on a citizen committee for the Holladay project, PBOT decided to hit the pause button and focus on Multnomah instead. Now PBOT is promising to make Multnomah "one of the coolest streets in Portland" (according to PBOT Director Tom Miller).

Multnomah currently has five standard vehicle lanes and standard bike-only lanes. It's the classic, auto-centric thoroughfare. The road diet will turn the road into a three standard vehicle lane cross-section, giving more room to bike lanes, crossing features, and perhaps tiny "parklets." This, along with major residential and retail development in the works, could significantly liven up the streetscape.

Every day we get a new reminder of how they are wrecking the city, financially and otherwise.

Comments (32)

I hope that if one of the three front runners for mayor is elected they follow through on their promise to fire Tom Miller.

Planning by idiots. Why do we need "cool" streets? Evidently these fools don't understand the need for trucks to move thru the city delivering goods.

All for the convenience of the 1%....of bicyclists!

What's the dickens is a "parklet"?

Also in the plans for the reconfiguration is the addition of on-street parking. Who really feels strongly that Multnomah Blvd needs 5 car lanes?

A "road diet"! That's so cute!

No money for paving streets, police, or community centers...but plenty of money for this crap. Adams and Miller should be in jail for their willful delerliction of official duties.

What Portland needs is a Demogogue Diet.

Speaking as a cyclist who lives very near the Lloyd Center area, this plan is really perplexing to me. Multnomah Boulevard already has a bike lane on it, and while it won't win any awards for beauty it's perfectly comfortable to ride on. And if you want beauty bike boulevard Tillamook is about five blocks north.

The city could use a good north-south bike route in that area, really — there's much less north-south connectivity than east-west, especially if you have to cross 84/30.

"It's the classic, auto-centric thoroughfare."

As most roads should be. As a life-long walker and public transit rider, I nothing against walking, biking, pogo-sticking, but until an effective alternative to the car comes along, it is the only viable method for most people to travel.

Since you asked: A "parklet" is a type of pork cutlet only this is a different kind of pork.

What annoys me the most is the "parklet" gibberish. Okay, so the idea is to open up former parking spaces as mini-parks. Fine and good. What happens then when the hipsters get bored, wander off after the next bright shiny object, and the parklet needs a good mowing and trash pickup? Is the city on the hook, or do you just wait for someone else to take it on until they get bored?

Yikes from the link "So far, the Multnomah project has moved from idea to fully developed concepts without any input from the public. The planning has taken place behind closed doors with a select group of Lloyd District stakeholders. This open house will be the first time the public is allowed to see what they've been working on and offer feedback"

"offer feedback" my eye. The public is merely being given notice what's going to be imposed on them next.

Perhaps this is just another idea coming down the pike - Parklets!

Create tiny parklets all around the city to add up the acreage, thus adding up enough to facilitate taking several large parks off the map.

Large parcels of land are becoming more scarce these days, so roving eyes may be on parks again. Remember what happened to Johnswood Park, sold for a housing development.

Can we feel secure about our parkland knowing Fish is on Parks AND Housing? Remember he didn't say NO to Leonard when Paulson wanted to take a chunk of Lents Park for that stadium.

How far can we carry this absurdity?
Tiny little parklets to tiny little units from tiny little minds!

Streetcars that don't do squat for mass transit, parklets, bioswales, who knows what's next? It isn't going to stop until all roads are barricaded from travel except by bike or foot.

I'm not making this up.

Let's play the Portland trivia game!

"Road Diet"

Is it:
A) Title of a Portlandia episode or
B) An actual Portland policy.

First one to guess correctly gets an ironic t-shirt.


A 'parklet' is a grassy spot just big enough for a pug to crap on.

And the 5-lane section of road with perhaps the lowest taffic counts in Portland will be getting on-street parking that is currently not there...

Since you asked: A "parklet" is a type of pork cutlet only this is a different kind of pork.

One of your better one-liners, Mr. B!

Though for some reason, it sends a Christmassy tingle up my leg.

And a parklet in a pear tree.

A parklet is where you sit on a tiny little bench oogling chicklets!

Mr. Grumpy,
Forget "feedback"
Forward is the new slogan!

Dick Fagen, creator of the "smallest park in the world", (as a joke) now known as Mill Ends Park, has got to be laughing his a$$ off in heaven.
I can only speculate what his comments about "parklets" might be, but
I doubt he would approve.

Funny thing: citizen advisory committees that are designed to be a cross section of the public are not because of and due to the vetting process. So when PBOT talks about a public process it is mostly a process that includes only hand selected players. Both the bike-alcoholic Sammyboy Adams and Tommyboy Miller have become a mentally ill wrecking crew when it comes to roadway infrastructure. The fact is in the real sense both steal – yes I said steal - funds away from roadway maintenance to pay for their bicycle addiction sickness, and it doesn’t seem to faze them at all. They both have become little socialist dictators in their own right! When are these guys going to stop supporting the slackers, spongers and bicyclist parasites, and start to expect some accounting of real fiscal responsibility from the bicycling community for what they should already be paying a fee for.

Does anyone else get the idea that the Lloyd District should be renamed the "SimCity District"?

We tried Urban Renewal in the 1950s bulldozing nice homes for a shopping mall. It didn't work. We slapped down light rail. It didn't work. We built a bunch of government buildings. It didn't work. We built the Convention Center...and then the Convention Center Annex...and then the Convention Center Plaza...none of them worked. We built the Rose Quarter...that didn't work. We thought about putting in the Glass Palace Costco and Home Depot Center...that didn't work...we thought about a baseball park, that too didn't work.

It seems that the city leaders are just sitting in front of a computer, endlessly bulldozing what was there to build something new...try, try again...the one failure of SimCity is that the feelings of the public aren't a factor of the game, and you can't be voted out. In fact you have to run a REALLY HUGE deficit to lose the game, but you can borrow all the money you want. And it seems that the City of Portland is just playing SimCity when it comes to the Lloyd District.

It's like watching suicidal jackals ripping apart the city.

A few truths about people who don't live in sustainability textbooks: People will shop and do business where it is easy to drive to and park. Commercial property owners in the Lloyd District or any area that relies on Multnomah Blvd. for access should be fighting this and band together to fight the next stupid scheme also. And the next.

When I play Sim City I build a bunch of coal plants and industry. I really pollute the hell out of things. Ignoring mass transit and taxing the heck out of the people. Then I unleash a giant Godzilla monster who smashes through everything.

Then I hold SHIFT and type F-U-N-D. This is a cheat that give me free monies. I do this until I have enough money to rebuild and ruin the city all over again.

Maybe I should run for mayor?

It will be "really cool" when the next Mayor fires Tom Miller.

"parklet"--the latest term for "bioswale." Also known as that weedy ditch along the side of the road.

I would think the Lloyd Center people would be fighting this tooth and nail. What percentage of their customers come by freeway, and use Multnomah as their route back to I84?

Most of the owners of Lloyd Center do not live here. They play Sim City someplace else, but they are waiting for the entire area to be the next Urban Renewal scam, so they will get more borrowed millions.
It really is just a game and the rest of us do NOT get to play, we just pay and pay and pay and.....

Portland evidently became a ripe plum orchard ready to picked and picked until clean.
Doesn't look like it will stop as long as a few plums left.
I know it sounds ugly, but for those who can see the path the city is on, what are we to think?

I hope that if one of the three front runners for mayor is elected they follow through on their promise to fire Tom Miller.

Just curious, has that promise been made by anyone?

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