Community groups launch multilingual survey on where transportation fixes are needed

Community groups launch multilingual survey on where transportation fixes are needed

Detail of heat map showing East Portland trouble spots.

A coalition of nonprofits and community groups calling itself “Prioritize Portland!” has created an easy-to-use online survey to ask more Portlanders what walking, biking and public transit improvements are needed most.

It’s being promoted by a team that includes OPAL Environmental Justice, the Bicycle Transportation Alliance, Oregon Walks, East Portland Neighborhood Office, Central Northeast Neighbors, the Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods, East Portland Neighbors, East Portland Action Plan, the GIS Jammers, Portland State University and Verde.

Here’s how one supporter describes the survey’s goals:

The survey uses geographic-based online tools and asks respondents questions about locations: Where roughly do you live? Where do you see barriers to physical movement? Where would you like to see new sidewalks, crossings, transit service, or bikeways? Which types do you prefer? The resulting data includes statistical data, line data, and point data, including “heat” maps like the one attached.

It’s 35 questions long and available in English, Spanish, Russian and Vietnamese.

Though anyone in the city is invited to participate, Prioritize Portland is putting particular emphasis on Northeast Portland’s Cully area and on Portland households east of 82nd Avenue, with a 14-question paper version being mailed to all 57,899 home addresses in East Portland with the help of “major one-time funding from the East Portland Action Plan.”

The coalition will also be conducting workshops this fall to help the neighborhoods use the resulting data to create neighborhood transportation master plans.

This looks like a terrific way to get very detailed data on the specific needs of ordinary people, who said in surveys this spring that they value safer walking routes even more than pothole repairs and other essential maintenance.

It also fits nicely into a project we’ve been wanting to do at BikePortland for a long time: a week of reporting from East Portland. In the second week of June, Jonathan and I will be setting up shop east of Interstate 205 and telling the stories of biking in the eastern third of Portland. If you know of one that needs telling, let us know.

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