City to widen bike lanes to NE Cully Blvd

City to widen bike lanes to NE Cully Blvd

The new buffer will be completed this week
(brown area is parking lane).
(Photo: PBOT)

The Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) is taking advantage of a paving project to improve bicycle access on a major street in northeast Portland. On Friday, PBOT announced a new buffered bike lane is coming to NE Cully Blvd between Prescott and Failing streets.

This 1/3 mile stretch of road is being repaved and PBOT is taking the opportunity to re-stripe the road in order to make the bicycle lane wider and more comfortable. PBOT will add a three-foot wide buffer to the existing five-foot wide bike lanes. The start of this project is just south of the existing physically separated cycle-tracks on Cully Blvd which were completed nearly two years ago. According to PBOT, when coupled with the cycle-track, “the buffered bike lane will provide people riding bicycles with nearly one mile of separated bikeway.”

This new buffered lane will also help smooth out the jarring emotional transition from the cycle-track to a standard, door-zone bike lane. It’s important to note that there are two schools nearby: Harvey Scott and Rigler.

To get the space for the wider bike lane, PBOT reduced the center turn lane from 15 to 10 feet and narrowed the two standard vehicle lanes (total road width is 66-feet).

As with many small-scale bikeway improvements throughout Portland over the years, the money to fund this re-striping — a whopping (sarcasm) $4,000 — comes from PBOT’s “Missing Links” program. This program is funded to the tune of just $50,000 per year; but its strategic investments add up to make significant enhancements to our bike network. Since 2000, the Missing Links program has developed over 40 miles of bikeways throughout the city. The program specifically focuses on creating and improving bikeways in conjunction with other projects (like paving).

With Mayor Hales putting a greater focus on paving and maintenance, it makes it more important than ever to have PBOT’s planners working closely with maintenance and paving crews. We can’t afford not to make these types of improvements wherever — and whenever — possible.

Read more from PBOT’s Active Transportation division.

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