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Monday, November 26, 2012

The planners' pictures are misleading

As one reader points out, "the artist left out the unicorns farting out rainbows and leprechauns showering gold down on passers-by." It's the latest fantasy about how taking away traffic lanes from Foster Road, which carries 25,000 cars a day, is somehow going to help the Lents neighborhood. The usual "citizen advisory" suspects out that way are active working the plan -- basically, the same people who were helping Admiral Randy push the rejected Paulson baseball stadium in Lents Park.

Lents could use a hand from City Hall, but unfortunately all that's available are the usual Portland theme park features. The money would be better spent on cops and schools.

For what it's worth, the neighborhood association will reportedly be taking input on the "road diet" tomorrow night at 7, at the Lents Activity Center, 8835 SE Woodstock. Good luck with that.

Comments (34)

NO ONE that has observed "citizen input" first hand would ever believe it has ANY impact on the decisions that have already been made behind closed doors.

The entire concept of soliciting input is to dilute and frustrate the local neighbors that will be most adversely impacted.

The hope is, there will be so many diverse, contradicting and nutty ideas from the public, the "PROFESSIONAL PLANNERS" will have to take over.

Is there a dedicated lane for stolen cars and cops chasing robbery suspects?

I would think that for a project so high profile the "artist" would at least try to make the people, cars and buildings look somewhat proportionate and non-copy pasted in.

1. Add about three times as many cars, of course backed up for blocks and blocks.

2. Remove the bicyclists.

3. Remove most of the pedestrians except one who is straggling across the street pushing a shopping cart full of beer cans.

4. Remove the sun, add dark clouds and thick, heavy rain.

5. Remove the pretty tree leaves. And add some tree fungus or other disease that seems to take hold with all of Portland's trees.

6. Also add in some groundwater due to a clogged sewer drain and a non-functional "bioswale".

7. Add grafitti.

Most people don't realize that the "meat" of these plans have already been drawn up, finalized, and made a part of official policy decades ago. Most of the "public process," today revolves around minor aesthetic updates, such as what color the rustic ornamental street lights should be.

One problem with the City of Portland narrowing Foster Road is that it's the direct road connection between Portland and Damascus, the area into which Metro has channeled much of the region's future housing with a major expansion of the urban growth boundary a few years back. Narrowing Foster Road would run counter to Metro's planning -- unless maybe the City doesn't care any more for Metro?

Of you could install a few more traffic lights and crosswalks for 1/100th the cost.

That image reminds me of Cypress Creek:

I especially like how mailboxes are sited.

The purveyors and advocates of this type of planning must be mentally imbalanced. Take a good look at this fantasy picture. The caption should read “how to kill a commercial district”. There is no parking for the customers that most businesses rely on. Slacker freeloading bicyclists have displaced motorists that pay roadway user fees making the entire concept financially unsustainable. It is also highly unlikely the bike lane will command a toll instead being paid for by taxpayers other than the freeloader bicyclists who utilize it. Since there are no busses, and thank heavens no streetcars in the picture, transit on Foster must no longer be an option. The busses would just crate more congestion by blocking traffic anyway. Finally, heaven help if an emergency needs to travel on this street because there is no place for drivers to pull over. Will the Portland Fire Bureau, the police and ambulance services be responding by bicycle? Hopefully when Sammyboy finally leaves office, Randy Miller and all of Sammyboy's cronies on the Portland Planning Commission will soon be gone too - out on their ears!

Isn't that blue building on the right side of the drawing the plumbing supply store on Foster? And if you know anything about them, you already know that virtually NONE of their customers arrive on foot or bike.

Where are John Paul George and ringo on the zebra crossing ?

Isaac, isn't Damascus rather removed from these changes, which I understand are west of I-205? You gotta mow through that tree-lined two-lane street via Pleasant Valley first. Aren't the Damascus "urban reserves" even further south of the current UGB?

I don't see how boosting precious Lents to inner Portland automobile capacity would be a top concern for the particular "regional center" of Damascus.

Shorthand for the Foster United blog is FU...pretty much how COP feels about inflicting their silliness on Portland's neighborhoods. One commenter goes on to rave about SE Tacoma from Sellwood bridge to 13th. Just give that a try during either AM or PM about a fustercluck!

FU will get what they deserve...FU!

Isn't that blue building on the right side of the drawing the plumbing supply store on Foster? And if you know anything about them, you already know that virtually NONE of their customers arrive on foot or bike.

I wouldn't be surprised if Morlan Plumbing relocates out of the designer zone to save its business.

Oh, Lents. You mean the neigborhood with the most unpaved streets?
Disrupting an important arterial and ignoring the unpaved streets is more ironic than getting a tatoo of a Swingline stapler.

Here is one of those many miles of mud

The way Citizens' Advisory Committees work in LO is the Planning Dept. first picks out who they want with a token adversary for looks, then they hand the committee the finished plan and put DRAFT on it. They answer all questions with what they want the committee to know, and when any negative comment is made, it gets buried in the meeting notes. The planners construct and manipulate the whole "citizen" process so they can get what they want.

As for the rendering, I have to wonder why the artist didn't think to bury the utility lines and replace the cracked asphalt when they were re-doing the street. As far as the planners go, Lents gets taken to the cleaners with a bad plan and bad construction. I know, it's just a picture, not the real thing, but it makes you wonder who or what these goons care about.

I think the blue building is the invisible tape store. Pg. 6.

By going to 2 lanes, they preserve an option for future streetcars.

 Reduces number of travel lanes from four to two for motorized traffic.  No center turn lane is provided.

 17-foot sidewalks are maintained.
 Enough furniture zone to introduce wider range of landscaping, stormwater, and placemaking
 Cycle track configuration cannot support curb extensions.

 Wide cycle tracks are provided in both directions, each with a marked buffers with separation from parking.

 Wider travel lanes provided for transit (12 feet).

 Twelve-foot travel lanes and eight-foot parking is compatible with streetcar, if pursued.

 Parallel parking is provided on both sides.

 Moderate cost alternative including restriping and constructing cycle tracks. (Relative cost compared to other alternatives only).

Sometimes I think this blog is just some kind of internet rorschach test. This is not a rendering, this is a photo of an unremarkable Portland neighborhood, warts and all, right off of Google Streeview, with some new elements pasted ontop.

Remove the sun, add dark clouds and thick, heavy rain
I see a typical overcast blah day.

Add about three times as many cars, of course backed up for blocks and blocks.
The before just has the traffic photographed at that time. The artist did add a car only to both concept compositions, at the crosswalk.

Remove the bicyclists
C'mon, pretty please? It's just one, I'll let you keep the extra car in the one without the bike lane.

Isn't that blue building on the right side of the drawing the plumbing supply store on Foster? And if you know anything about them, you already know that virtually NONE of their customers arrive on foot or bike.

That would be a Cricket Wireless store, latino tax service, and janitorial business.

There is no parking for the customers that most businesses rely on.
There were lots to start with in front. Delineated street parking is in both concept photos. Usually people park along the numerous intersecting streets on Foster, and I imagine would continue to use the parking lots that the apartment building and retail store have along back and side. .

Since there are no busses, and thank heavens no streetcars in the picture, transit on Foster must no longer be an option.

Existing blue TriMet bus poles are pictured.

It is also highly unlikely the bike lane will command a toll

I bet you're right

I typo'd, "There no were lots to start with in front", I had meant.

It's Disneyland....where everything is to 7/8ths scale.
And unicorns farting rainbows!

That image reminds me of Cypress Creek:

Where's the monorail?!!!

It's Disneyland....where everything is to 7/8ths scale.

And again, where's the monorail? And the horse-drawn trolley, the antique double-decker bus, the parades twice a day and the daily fireworks show?

However, the ground floor is 3/4ths scale, the second floor is 5/8ths scale, the third floor 1/2 scale. And only on Main Street. Don't get me started on Toontown where the Jolly Trolley rocks and rolls as it runs down the street, and where Goofy can crash a car onto the sidewalk and it becomes a landmark. (Oh, and there are no bicycles in Disneyland.)

I hope this copies...(maybe Jack can edit)

Missed this:

That's gotta be Portland... blown up, the plates on the red van in the distance bear a fuzzy resemblance to an Oregon plate.

HOLY MOLY - this is my corner, literally! My shop and apt. are behind the "camera" on the right, right on the corner (it's 85th and Foster). A couple of thoughts:

- notice the bars are still on the windows of the store on the right... Appropriate.
- Cobblestone bikeways? I'm not even sure the bicycle folks would like these.

I have been in the neighborhood 10 years, and the prettification around the Assurity NW building a few blocks to the east hasn't helped. Improvement in Lents DOES have to be a multifaceted effort, and traffic calming needs to be effected in order to have those Foster Rd. businesses make any money. But there needs to be consistent businesses there in the first place! Turnover in the area is frequent. Lents Body Shop at the West Y, and U-Haul nearby are about the only Anchors. (Sorry if I missed someone.) Further, we are NOT well supported by the police. Property crime is rampant. PPB cops show up in droves when bullets fly or when there is pedestrian splatter; other than that, you are on your own. An initial report will be taken by Officer Curteous - follow up? HAH! I even developed a suspect on my own in a car theft case, and they REFUSED to follow up.

I am open to options for improvement, but dropping an a lovely building with trees, and cobble-stoning bike paths is like spray painting over rust. The corrosion is still there.

Here's what KC sees when he takes his lunch break:

Shop? Plug your business, KC. Quick!

Visiting the source website is rather an odd exercise. They seem to be promoting painting pictures on the intersection road. Really, I'm not making this up.

Their website is also rather outdated. Their current project:

"Placemaking is the creative reclamation of public space and the core of what we do at City Repair. The VBC is a 10-day event held each spring (May 28 – June 6, 2010) where a convergence of citizens, natural builders and activists come together to help neighborhoods design and build their own community amenities. "

Doh, my above comment was for

Jack - can you move it to the appropriate forum?

What does "reclamation of public space" mean? Take it from the many to give to the few?

CM....all the garbage that is spewed from city hall, comes from the same mind your comments fit well on this thread too!
Garbage in! garbage out! And the compost stinks!

"Spray painting over rust"......Brilliant

So, with the complete lack of left turn lanes, and cramming the current 4-lane traffic into two lanes, do they expect people that need to turn left to wait until Christmas to make their turn, with traffic backing up all the way to Powell (or 82nd) behind them?

It's more likely that all the cars will instead move into the narrow neighborhood streets using them to get where they are going, and driving well above 25mph while doing it.

And that's definitely a "livability improvement."

Everywhere I've ever seen a "road diet" implemented gets measurably worse for people trying to get through there, as well as the people that live there and would like to actually cross the street. The only people that actually like it, are people that don't like cars.

Aaron said: "I typo'd, "There no were lots to start with in front", I had meant."

I want some of what he's having. Thanks.


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to be a member of:

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Lange, Pinot Gris 2015
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L'Ecole No. 41, Merlot 2013
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