The Foster Streetscape Plan is currently being redone, and safety for all users of the road will one of the most significant issues the committee examines. Foster United is presenting its list of some of the areas we think need attention in the plan area, which is 50th to 90th Avenues.
This series was originally going to be called The 84 Most Dangerous Areas of Foster Road, but cooler heads prevailed and we’re limiting it to eight, in no particular order.
1. Foster & Powell
This area, identified as the “Gateway” in 2003’s Plan, contains a variety of hazards, especially for bikers. The area was never very safe, but a botched Oregon Dept. of Transportation repaving project done several years ago made it far worse.
There are several specific trouble spots. First is that for southbound bikes on 50th Avenue, the bike lane just disappears… (Poof!) Then, proceeding south through the light, if a bicyclist survives potential sideswiping by a Trimet bus, he or she is spit out into a non-lane sandwiched between two speeding lanes of auto traffic.
Northbound isn’t quite so treacherous, but still has no marked bike lane, leading to one of the last remaining unofficial street dragstrips in Portland. When a northbound bike pulls up to the light, intending to go forward on 50th, he or she is at the starting line for a 20-yard-dash –the bike and two lanes of cars are in a deathrace to see which can squeeze into the one lane that continues north. Why the right lane isn’t a right-turn only is beyond me.
Is there such a thing as transportation engineer malpractice? If so, this corner would be my nominee.