Spotted these new MAX cars along the bus mall today. They aren’t officially running yet, but they must have been doing training with the drivers. For those who aren’t from Portland, there are already MAX lines all over the city, these are just new ones being added as part of a transit mall downtown. These will be coming from Clackamas, which is a suburb, going through Downtown, and will eventually go to Milwaukie, another suburb, via the upcoming MAX/Bicycle/Pedestrian only bridge over the Willamette river.
In other news, Portland has been approved for $75 million in federal funding to begin construction on the east side streetcar loop, that would connect to the already existing streetcar which travels from the south waterfront, through downtown, and through northwest Portland, and will eventually loop all along the east side of the river and back over the aforementioned MAX/Bicycle/Pedestrian only bridge.
Also, it seems we’re getting a 7-block long separated cycle path along SW Broadway near Portland State University, which will involve removing one lane of car traffic, move the automobile parking away from the curb on the right side, and put the cycle path between the sidewalk and the car parking, with a 3-foot buffer between the parked cars and the cycle path, to avoid dooring. This will be a first in Portland, and hopefully if it’s successful, we could see more pop up around town in places where they make sense. This particular area will be really well-served by this, as the current biking facilities are what seems like about a two foot wide painted bike lane, which starts on the left edge of the car parking, and ends on the right edge of the car traffic lane. You’re literally riding about a foot away from cars on both sides.
It’s an exciting time for transportation in Portland, there are a lot of interesting things going on, and it’ll be interesting to see how they go once they’re up and running. Cheers!