A New Report Shows Highway Widening Won't Solve Portland's Congestion Woes

And as a Tolling Plan Rushes Forward, Some Officials Want to Know Why ODOT Won't Research a World Without New Construction Projects

Comments

1
File this under: DUH. Widening didn't help congestion on the 405 in Los Angeles, despite the billions spent there. I love the idea of tolling and congestion pricing for inner Portland. We shouldn't be subsidizing personal automobile use.
2
Seriously. If, say, the freeway was somehow totally disconnected from the city it might manage to be immune from its congestion. Defeating the point of having a freeway in a city, but hey, no congestion! Otherwise, the average speed everywhere is easily halved during rush hours, and even if there were no such thing as Google Maps, Waze, and Uber and Lyft driver apps, drivers everywhere would, during those peak hours, always try to squeeze a little speed out of hopping onto the roads that promise unfettered 50 and 60 mph travel and no stops - and fail to deliver those promises no matter how many hundreds of millions we lavish on the state DOT.
3
The Rose Quarter I-5 in the photo is NOT a widening as are the proposals to widen I-205 (least congested West Lynn area) and Hwy 217 (Tigard to Beaverton) from two to three lanes. The Rose Quarter proposal includes two pedestrian-friendly crossings of I-5 and an ideal reroute of surface street traffic to separate the horrible bottleneck between southbound exit and entrance traffic with new ramps and short length 'auxiliary' lanes that reduce its currently high accident rate. Sometimes the Mercury just starts a fight and likes watching it happen. Oregon's premier rail advocacy group AORTA proposes converting the WES corridor into an extension of the Red Line MAX - instead of on Barbur Blvd where the impact would be devastating, ridership and development potential low, and cost extremely high. MAX there would offer an alternative solution instead of widening Hwy 217.
4
"Defeating the point of a freeway in a city. Without Google Maps, Waze, Uber and Lyft apps, drivers during peak hours, always speed onto roads with an unfettered 50-60mph travel limit, no stops, yet fail to deliver promises despite many $100's of millions state DOTs spend." Closer to a solution, further from whom to blame.

5
edit: (adding MAX to the WES corridor offers an alternative solution to widening Hwy 217)
Worth repeating for emphasis: Convert WES to MAX to Wilsonville.
Get an hourly Salem run from there. Barbur has nowhere near as well-planned potential.