Hot on the heels of the Foster Road streetscape planning is a proposed transit improvement project on another neighborhood main street. Called the Powell/Division Transit and Development Project, the plan aims to identify "robust" transit improvements between Portland and Gresham along a Powell Boulevard/Division Street alignment.
All signs are pointing to this being a relatively small transit upgrade. While theoretically, light rail, dedicated bus lanes and other major changes are on the table for discussion, the project is seeking upgrades "that can be built in five to seven years." This short time frame indicates that major upgrades involving lane reconfiguration, curb adjustment, or installing rail are extremely unlikely.
Even so, if your vision of a future Powell Blvd involves light rail, parking, protected bike lanes or dedicated bus lanes then this is the time to let them know it.
TONIGHT: Steering committee and community gathering
Feb. 27, 6 to 7:30 p.m., PCC Southeast Center
Get to know the steering committee members and each other by joining us at the first gathering for the Powell-Division project.
There are three main questions to answer:
Initial concepts indicate a route would travel along Powell Boulevard to 82nd, go north to Division and resume eastbound travel from there. But this isn't set in stone. 82nd is a congested, constrained street - would it be easier to travel to Division in the vicinity of I-205? Is it better to shift to Division farther west, around 50th?
Station Areas and Redevelopment
Where should new development go to support these transit upgrades? Are those parking lots along Powell (leftover parcels from the original Mt. Hood Freeway proposal) potential sites for new commercial or mixed use development?
While major transit projects in Portland tend to be Light Rail. The insiders are pointing to Bus Rapid Transit (basically, an upgraded bus line) being the preferred option for the Powell/Division project.
If BRT is selected the degree to which the line gets priority treatments like a dedicated bus lane are to be determined.