Future prospects for BRT in Portland

This past evening in the Twitterverse, I had a discussion with several fine folks, including Michael Andersen, intersection 911, and our very own Al M, on the future prospects for major capital improvements in the bus system, up to and including BRT. (Planned purchases of replacement busses, tardy as they are, are excluded).

An oft-held viewpoint, also echoed frequently by readers here, was that it was unlikely to happen.
There has been quite a bit of discussion of BRT in Portland over the years. The original MAX line was originally conceived as a busway; a BRT solution for the South Corridor project (Portland-Milwaukie) was given serious consideration, and its being discussed for the Powell/Division and Tualatin-Clackamas corridors. Clark County/C-TRAN is also considering BRT. Last year, we discussed the prospect of BRT running parallel to WES; something which TriMet has not, to my knowledge, considered.

But talk, as they say, is cheap. The last five rapid transit projects constructed here in town have been rail, as is the Portland-Milwaukie line under construction. The next major rapid transit line in the queue, the Southwest Corridor, is widely expected to be rail as well (no decision has been made, and its still early in the planning process, but I would be shocked otherwise). And that’s just MAX–there’s also WES and the Streetcar as well. Past behavior is an indicator of future behavior.

Intersection 911 made an insightful comment:

@I-911: seems BRT is always “considered” before rail is chosen. I smell forgone conclusion + too much emphasis on choice riders

While I’ll leave alone the “foregone conclusion” part, the “choice riders” part is dead on. FTA criteria for evaluating transit projects have, until recently, placed much emphasis on attracting “new riders“, and on cutting down on travel times. New riders are invariably choice riders (the dependent riders are already using transit), and there’s quite bit of them who won’t ride busses, and the travel time requirement encourages high-capital projects. The Obama Administration has altered the criteria, but many think the new policy will instead promote streetcars. (In a must-read article, Jarrett Walker channels Socrates for an excellent discussion of the FTA criteria.)

However–blaming the FTA isn’t the whole story. While the FTA isn’t immune from politics, programs such as New Starts are designed to permit funding decisions to be made on technical rather than political grounds, and it works reasonably well. And more to the point–the FTA has funded quite a few BRT projects over the years, including two EmX projects in Eugene. (A third is in the works). Over a dozen BRT projects are presently in the pipeline, meaning construction has started, or is scheduled to start in 2012.

FTA programs such as New Starts don’t pay for programs all by themselves, however–Uncle Sam instead provides a 50%-60% match on projects. (Larger projects like MLR get 50%, smaller ones can get 60%). Which means locals have to come up with the other 40%-50% of a project’s cost. Transit agencies, such as TriMet, generally don’t have that sort of money on hand–and indeed, TriMet has gotten raked over the coals for its contribution of less than 5% of the MLR capital costs, as this is money that could go to pay for better bus service.

Matching funds, instead, are often appropriated by state and local governments. Salem is paying for a significant chunk of the project, and local governments in the region are kicking in the majority of the rest. And unlike the FTA, many of the local governments lack effective bureaucracy to reduce the politics inherent in funding decisions. I have no doubt that the FTA would be willing to fund a suitable BRT project, and although it may seem like a leap of faith, I’m certain TriMet would have no issue building and operating one. My suspicion is that the biggest roadblock to this are the local governments providing the match–cities and counties are prone to seek prestige projects (since Hillsboro, Beaverton, Gresham, and now Milwaukie have LRT, don’t expect Tigard to “settle” for BRT), and are subject to greater influence from local development and construction interests.

That said, I’ve long pondered the debate between federalism and localism of infrastructure funding. Sending the bulk of our tax dollars to DC only to go begging for it to be returned is rather inefficient. My biggest beef with the Feds, though is not what the FTA does, but with the broader transportation funding priorities–Washington still likes to build freeways more than anything else. However, the same is arguably true for Salem.

A Powell/Division BRT corridor actually strikes me as a politically tractable project. It would be built in cities that already have MAX, and lies in a corridor where rail would be expensive (and there’s a parallel MAX line to the north). The existing bus corridor is well-used. The major question is–can the stars be aligned to pay for it?


41 responses to “Future prospects for BRT in Portland”

  1. I suspect the likeliest avenue for a BRT project is one funded through a revenue bond, rather than one funded via the Legislature. That said, TriMet’s luck with the voters has not been good of late.

  2. If we are talking about true BRT, with dedicated lanes, all of the corridors in question (past and present) require construction of new ROW, so the costs between BRT and rail are very similar. Add to that the fact that we have a large rail network built out already, and the choice is obvious, due to the lower operating costs.

    HWY 35 and Powell are a different story. A dedicated ROW on Powell would require the demolition of many structures, or the construction of an expensive elevated ROW. I see BRT type improvements in store for Powell, but not true BRT.

  3. Highway 35? That runs between Hood River and Mt. Hood… which highway/corridor did you mean?

  4. The distinction between how well a transit mode serves “choice riders” and “dependent riders” is, I think, a bit of a fallacy. Transit service designed for “dependent riders” is inevitably awful. With fewer riders, it provides less frequent service to fewer destinations.

    “Dependent” service also usually means a lot fewer amenities. For instance, there is no reason to think “dependent riders” prefer rail to buses less than “choice riders” do. But they will use whatever service is provided. So when the only riders are “dependent” on the service, you end up with bus stops without shelters, uncomfortable seats and a lack of customer service.

    In other words the focus on choice riders creates better service for everyone, especially those who are forced to use transit regardless of its quality.

    CLF supported BRT as an alternative for the Milwaukie corridor. But it really had few advantages, and lots of disadvantages, over light rail. The citizen advisory group, that included a lot of light rail skeptics, decided light rail made more sense afterall. As Chris points out, BRT loses most of its cost advantage when it requires the same right of way as light rail.

    The real problem for BRT is that it is being sold as an alternative to light rail, instead of as an alternative to standard bus service. There is no doubt that the bus service on many routes would be improved by implementing a lot of BRT features using existing right of way. Instead, it only gets considered as an alternative for corridors where light rail is likely to be a better option.

  5. It seems like we need a good BRT corridor on the ground to activate folks to lobby for more of it. People want to go with a proven winner and locally that’s Rail :(

  6. Actually Powell Blvd has constricted ROW only between SE 17t (where MLR crosses and PLR could begin) and SE 52nd or so; that’s about 35 blocks or less than two miles. Could be elevated there. Beyond 52nd, the south side is primarily parking lots with few businesses or structures all the way out to the Green Line.
    The region needs to go back to the voters for the next several HCT corridors as was done in ’94 for South/North. A successful package would need to offer all counties something…Barbur LRT to Tigard (Multnomah/Washington); Red Line extension to Kruse Woods or Tualatin(Washington/Clackamas); Powell LTR to East Portland (Multnomah). A lot of money, but let the voters decide. Maybe a smaller package works.
    “Honest BRT” means a dedicated ROW, and once you cost that, it makes no sense to go that route where you already have multiple LRT lines, rail mainenance facilities, etc, not to mention that LRT gets you more riders at lower cost per ride.

  7. Ross: The real problem for BRT is that it is being sold as an alternative to light rail, instead of as an alternative to standard bus service. There is no doubt that the bus service on many routes would be improved by implementing a lot of BRT features using existing right of way. Instead, it only gets considered as an alternative for corridors where light rail is likely to be a better option.

    Lenny: “Honest BRT” means a dedicated ROW, and once you cost that, it makes no sense to go that route where you already have multiple LRT lines, rail mainenance facilities, etc, not to mention that LRT gets you more riders at lower cost per ride.

    Good points both, though there is one major exception to the principle: Replacement of auto lanes with bus lanes. This, generally can be done cheaply, and while it doesn’t improve outcomes as much as a fully dedicated ROW, it is better than mixed-traffic BRT. Of course, it requires taking away lanes from cars, and is thus politically difficult.

    The other advantage of BRT is that it can be done piecemeal, such as (as Lenny notes) a dedicated ROW along Powell between I-205 and SE 52nd (or possibly SE 39th), and then mixed-traffic running with signal priority further inbound. Streetcar is more difficult to run in mixed traffic on major thoroughfares such as Powell, and such a configuration is probably not practical for light rail. EmX in Eugene is a good example of how mixed-mode BRT works–where it can, busses run in the median on a dedicated ROW (with grass in between the tires!), where that wasn’t practical, busses run in mixed traffic.

  8. Powell between 17th and 52 usually has plenty of room between buildings for a 100 foot right-of-way, between existing buildings. There are a few places where it is limited to 85 or 90 feet. The narrowest spot is 80 feet, between 20th and 21st, and one location is only 76 feet wide, at SE 49th:

    The existing roadway has 5 lanes. If you stay in that space, you can have one lane each way for cars (and bikes), and 2 lanes for buses, with a third lane for bus stations at corners. The median is just asphalt, so no trees would be lost.

    With BRT, you could have the bus lanes along the curb, which means you still have room for 2 car lanes and a center turn / left turn lane, if desired, or 2 car lanes and 2 separate bike lanes on each side. This could also be done with LRT, actually.

    No need to elevate a separate right-of-way.

  9. I wonder if there are any significant land use differences between LRT and BRT (Ross’s point about not pitting these modes against one another aside); that is, does LRT induce more development, and thus wind up being a better form of “development-oriented transit” than BRT? Or is it a wash?

    (I’m not sure that the data yet exists in this country to make that determination, BTW, but I’m curious how opinions run…)

  10. A couple notes:

    * At least some of the rail preference seems to come from developers and their lenders. Whether this is based on any scientific evidence that shows that rail results in higher property values, I don’t know.

    * If the BRT is diesel as opposed to trolleybus, noise and fumes will be generally worse than with electric rail.

    * Something tells me that ODOT would rather quickly put the kibosh on reducing SW Powell to a single lane of vehicle traffic in each direction, even if we here might not mind :). The sort of BRT that seems to be discussed for the Powell corridor is a combination of nicer stops/stations, signal priority, longer stop spacing, and other low-cost BRT treatments, not a dedicated bus lane or busway.

  11. Good discussion so far. The Tualatin-Clackamas corridor in particular would be ideal for BRT, since (I’m assuming) it would be running on I-205 the entire distance and would have limited stops (there’s currently not much development between West Linn and Tualatin).

    Have BRT enhancements been considered for crosstown corridors like 82nd and 122nd? I’m in the “running the MAX Green Line along 205 rather than 82nd was a wise move” camp, but surely 82nd could still use some transit enhancements.

  12. One important point to note is that EmX has boarding doors on both sides of its busses; the platform shown supports boardings in both directions.

    A key question when considering a BRT line is whether or not it is an open or a closed service. An open BRT service is simply a piece of BRT infrastructure that is usable by any bus in the system. A closed BRT service is only used by specific lines, and thus may have different types of infrastructure (busses, platforms) than the local service, just as MAX uses incompatible equipment that differs from ordinary busses. EmX is a closed BRT line–its busses are not used outside of the corridor, and Lane Transit District’s other busses cannot be used on the EmX route.

    Given the nature of the Powell corridor, I would think that closed BRT would be appropriate. (Were BRT chosen for the SW Corridor, OTOH, open BRT might be more appropriate, as many different bus lines converge upon SW Barbur as it heads into town; it would be useful if the 54 and the 56 and the 12 and all the rest simply could use a busway rather than running in mixed traffic on Barbur, but then fan out to the neighborhoods they serve as appropriate).

  13. “busses as ambulances” is an idea I’ve heard a few other places where basically- you have to move out of the way if there’s a bus coming. Does this sort of scheme actually work or is it just a pipe dream?

  14. The only place I’ve heard it considered is Barcelona. In the Barcelona scheme, busses are not equipped with lights and sirens like emergency vehicles are, instead a lane-control system instructs motorists to clear a lane when a bus approaches. Jarrett Walker covered it here.

    My evil suggestion has been instead to treat transit busses like school busses–when the bus comes to a stop, the red lights flash, the little stop sign swings out, and all the cars on the road stop.

  15. Maybe a Powell line of whatever sort should head SE on Foster Road at 50th to Lents Town Center…and beyond to that enclave of Urbophobia, Damascus?
    I think developers prefer Streetcar to MAX lines, in part because the latter have for the most part been run along freeways, which are themselves huge disincentives to urban development as opposed to exurban development. Interstate shows signs of station area development as does the westside, and finally Hollywood. I don’t hold out much hope for the Green Line or Milwaukie Line…next to both the freeway and UP mainline.
    I’m resigned to BRT in Clark county, but we need to extend the Yellow Line to Hayden Island where there is room for a real transfer station for the poor souls that will have that extra burden.

  16. Could MAX be ran like a streetcar, mixed in traffic with signal prioritization for stretches where it’d be hard to fit otherwise? Maybe just as a temporary phase until they can separate it better later? I think technically on the Steel Bridge cars can drive with the MAX trains.

  17. Back in the early days of MAX, the center lanes of the Steel Bridge *were* shared with cars. I think the current exclusive transit use is mainly for capacity reasons.

    And trains mix with busses on the Transit Mall.

    One issue is that MAX trains aren’t equipped with the necessarily stuff to be fully street-legal. Streetcars have turn signals, for instance, MAX trains do not.

    Another issue is that the two-car trains barely fit within a city block. Were a two-car MAX train to get stuck behind a Volkswagen at a traffic light, its back end would be blocking the street it (almost) just crossed. (Interesting question: Has there been a problem with Streetcars getting stuck in long queues of cars, and unable to clear an intersection? At 20m, it’s not outside the realm of possibility…)

  18. @EngineerScotty:

    For the most part, Streetcar drivers don’t attempt to go across an intersection until there is enough room on the other side to clear the intersection. In other words, they don’t “block the box”. But that’s just my experience. I imagine the 11th and Couch 4-way stop to be the most problematic area for them.

    @Lenny Anderson:
    You might remember that I suggested LRT for Powell a few months ago, based on the notion that the inner-city should not get the short shrift with “BRT” when the suburbs all get MAX lines. You seemed to suggest that SE Portland already had good transit coverage with its buses. So I am amused that you are now in favor of light rail along Powell. Except why give the neighborhoods a reason to oppose the line with an ugly, elevated eyesore? Bury it until past 52nd.

    But you are underestimating the number of properties that ODOT did not purchase and demolish along the south side of Powell in preparation for Mt. Hood Freeway construction. It’s certainly more than a “few”.

  19. EngineerScotty Says:

    “The only place I’ve heard it considered is Barcelona. In the Barcelona scheme, busses are not equipped with lights and sirens like emergency vehicles are, instead a lane-control system instructs motorists to clear a lane when a bus approaches. Jarrett Walker covered it here.”

    This article seemed to be written before implementation. I’d love to heard a writeup of the success or failure of such a scheme.

    Seperately, has TriMet considered just removing stops on some of its lines? It seems like reducing dwell times could significantly speed up some of its routes without a huge cost in walking time. Additionally, this could reduce maintenance of shelters, etc

  20. You know what the real problem is?

    If you get in the WAY BACK MACHINE you’ll see that Trimet had a pretty damn good bus system not that long ago, say 20 years ago.

    You could get virtually anywhere on Trimet.

    So what happened? Why did it all go away?

    It went away because government didn’t take care of it.

    They wanted to build, around here specifically light rail.

    And this is the problem with all the funding, its for building new stuff, not taking care of the old stuff.

    They need to stop building, not just here in Portland but around the country.

    They need to stop building and start taking care of what they have now.

    We do not need any more new stuff, just take care of what we got now.

    But they keep building, and we get less and less and less overall service.

    The whole world has gone with buses, specifically due to cost.

    The arrogance of the American people will be its downfall.

    I guarantee you, when gas hits $5 a gallon, people will stop looking down their noses at bus service, but it will be too late by then.

    Stop growing what you can’t support and just take care of what we have.

    Is that such a crazy concept?

    Transit has to stop making fortunes for people off the tax payers backs. There are too many Fred Hansen’s out here and too many rich bus drivers too.

    The whole culture of transit operations needs a facelift.

    Actually, the whole culture of the culture has to change.

    Say hello to GREECE because we are heading in that exact direction.

    Transit agencies looking for federal $$$ are like seals at Sea World. They do whatever tricks get them fish. (our very own Engineer Scotty)

  21. “My evil suggestion has been instead to treat transit busses like school busses–when the bus comes to a stop, the red lights flash, the little stop sign swings out, and all the cars on the road stop”

    In many cities, old style streetcars or trams stopped right in the middle of the street, without platforms, to pick up and drop off riders. The San Francisco cable cars do this too. The law usually requires drivers to stop while passengers get on and off at these stops. But enforcement can be a problem!

  22. All the BRT corridors mentioned extend out to the suburbs. But what about BRT features for regular buses, in the central city?

    All of the frequent network buses deserve improvements, especially in high-traffic areas near downtown. The transit mall is great, and this should be expanded as much as possible. For example, the Burnside, Morrison, and Broadway bridges could all have two lanes devoted to buses, which could continue east to at least NE/SE 12th, and west thru Downtown. This would greatly improve reliability and speed during rush hour, saving Trimet money while improving life for bus riders and drivers. And it would be cheap, if politically difficult.

    Bus stop consolidation, combined with improvements (real shelters and better signs and seating) at the remaining stops, would also be helpful, and would make it easier to go to off-board payment and proof-of-payment in the future. This is the standard for most frequent, central city buses all over Europe, not just for streetcars and rail, and it will save money and time.

  23. The bus-only lane on SE Madison east of the Hawthorne bridge is a great example. I think the city needs to use this on all major bus routes. A few I can think of:

    – Burnside from W 2nd to Sandy (bus only and right turn for cars)
    – E Couch, where possible (new curb extensions have kind of killed this one)
    – Grand/MLK: streetcar/bus only lane during peak periods

  24. Removing curb extension to support a bus lane generally isn’t a problem; the curb extensions are there to make it safer for bus passengers to board and alight.

    One problem with making the Grand/MLK streetcar lanes transit-only is parking–cars parking on either street need to use the streetcar lane to reach the parking spaces. (If a transit-only lane was considered a possibility, the better design for it would be an inverted couplet design. That would involve the northbound streetcar using the easternmost lane of MLK, opposite traffic, and the southbound streetcar traffic using the westernmost lane on Grand.

    The Morrison and Hawthorne bridge viaducts, and their approaches, are a major complication however.

  25. 7th highest per capita ridership in the country or something like that…yes our transit system sure has gone to the dogs.
    re LRT out Powell…put the cars in tunnel, give transit riders the sun light or better yet, just take the lane, like on Interstate. I like the Foster Rd option better than Powell anyway, but there sure seems to be a lot of parking lots out there except for my wife’s dentist.

  26. I liked Dan W’s question about BRT for conventional bus lines. I was on the #72 on 82nd late at night a couple weeks ago and the bus was absolutely packed!

    The greenline MAX makes it seem as if enhanced transit along 82nd would be redundant, but it’s absolutely not. Transit is a pedestrian mode, and no one is going to walk 1 mile out of direction to head N/S on 82nd.

    What are our options for capacity increases along that corridor? Streetcar? BRT? Shorter headways?

  27. The city Streetcar System Plan discusses some ideas of putting streetcars on 82nd, particularly in the stretch between SE Foster and SE Division.

    Whether that would happen, I don’t know–personally I’d prefer improvements to the 72. The proposed Streetcar line would give better connectivity to MAX for those along 82nd, without having to use an E/W bus… but if that’s a concern, improvements to the 72 should also help. Given that 82nd is frequently a parking lot in this area, I’m not sure how useful a mixed-traffic solution will be compared to local bus service.

    And lest I forget, Portland Transport reported last fall that ODOT wants to close the 82nd Avenue bus lane near Clackamas Town Center, allegedly for safety reasons. (Too many cars sideswiping the bus, says ODOT). Whether this will actually happen, I’m not sure–but the project area is outside the City of Portland, so the local government (Clackamas County) might not object.

  28. I’d also prefer improvements to the 72 rather than a streetcar. At very least, put some articulated buses on the line, and maybe some limited service (transfer point only) buses at peak hour.

    I’ve also been wondering: would there be a benefit to extending 72 into downtown and interlining with another frequent service route? There doesn’t appear to be any need for it to serve Swan Island; it’s only there during weekday rush hours anyway, and I think line 85 has that covered.

    So what if 72 (traveling westbound) went south on Greeley and then EAST on Prescott, south on Mississippi to Interstate, then across the Steel Bridge and down the Transit Mall — and then replaced the 56 out to Washington Square. It would mean adding an additional frequent bus on the Transit Mall making one stop north of Burnside, but that’s probably achievable.

    What got me to thinking this: Alberta is a fairly popular shopping district, but there’s no single-seat ride from Alberta to downtown unless you board the 8 at 15th or the 9 at 27th. That’s not a convenient walk for shoppers halfway between those points. If you use the 72 along Alberta, you need to transfer at some point to get to the core … or nearly anywhere else.

    A combination 56/72 line would be anchored by a major mall at each end, and would have downtown, Mississippi, Alberta, two PCC campuses and multiple MAX connections along the way. It might even increase the already high ridership of the current 72.

  29. Thanks for highlighting our conversation, Scotty.

    I really like the suggestions of improving existing bus service.

    I understand LRT may make sense over BRT in certain applications, my fascination is based on the notion that we have done so well at innovating with rail-based transit but we have done very little to improve the core of our transit system: buses. We have not developed a sustainable way to pay for the larger capital costs associated with rail, not to mention the complications surface rail creates for bicycle transportation.

    A region with great rail lines but declining bus service is not walkable, equitable or livable in my opinion.

  30. One other point: the more I watch development patterns in Portland, the more I grow skeptical of the argument that rail bring the development.

    Sure there are great examples of new development along rail lines, but that may be more reflective of other relationships, agreements and other land use factors. I’m sure rail doesn’t hurt development, but as I watch tremendous growth on streets like Williams, Mississippi, Alberta, Belmont, Division, and so forth, I don’t see any tracks in the ground.

    I look at the slow pace of development along Yellow & Red MAX lines and these areas do not resemble those fancy concept animations where you see huge buildings fall from the sky and it’s all TOD, all the time.

    Perhaps we need to rethink this connection, or at least consider not putting so much weight into it.

  31. Williams, Mississippi, Alberta, Belmont, Division…

    All streets whose development pattern was driven by streetcars. The “bones” are still there and still make great places. The highest benefit for rail is the places that don’t have these great bones.

  32. “The highest benefit for rail is the places that don’t have these great bones.”

    Yet at the same time, these places without great bones (122nd, 82nd, and to some extent, Foster/Lents). Get rejected for “not being ready for rail.” Which is it?

    I wish the Railvolutionaries put their money where their mouth is and aimed for transformative interventions into struggling parts of the city.

    I wonder what the east Portland response would be if a candidate pushed for a streetcar on 122nd as a centerpiece of their campaign?

  33. Yet at the same time, these places without great bones (122nd, 82nd, and to some extent, Foster/Lents). Get rejected for “not being ready for rail.” Which is it?

    The Portland Plan sets up a conversation about whether we want to commit to the land use patterns (density, mixed use) that would be required to “be ready” in these corridors. The Comprehensive Plan development process is the place to have the conversation.

  34. Note that most LRT lines are along freeways, making any TOD difficult at best; I expect nothing much on the Green Line. Interstate is seeing development, but slowly…we did have the worst recession since the Great Depression. And frankly I did not want rapid redevelopment along that corridor as that would have made holding harmless existing residents and businesses that much more difficult.
    Its hard to deny that Streetcar on the other hand has not had a huge impact on development along its route. We shall see if the pattern continues along Broadway/Weidler, Lloyd and Central Eastside. A good test.
    The core of the bus system is the Frequent Service lines, and at a minimum we need to get them back to 15 minute headways or better. But rail is getting reduced service as well…got to keep those Ops happy.

  35. Lenny,

    It’s useful to distinguish between a trunk line and a branch; trunk lines ought to be optimized for fast mobility more than TOD potential. I’ve no issue, for example, with MAX being along the Banfield. The Green Line section along I-205 is a bit more problematic, as its more of a branch than a trunk.

    The interesting one is MLR, as it is eventually intended, along with the existing Yellow, to be a north/south trunk line. Interstate MAX, being street running, is build more like a branch line ought to be–fine for its present purpose, but if and when it goes to Vancouver, it might be an issue. MLR, once you get past Brooklyn/SE Holgate, is built to trunk standards–but it doesn’t have any branches in the near-term, and given the current state of politics in Clackamas County, I suspect it won’t sprout any branches in the medium term either.

  36. Scotty,
    Do the math on travel time differentials if Yellow had gone along I-5, killing any TOD. With stations every 1/2 mile it would not have been much faster that the Interstate option is. I’m guessing here, but I’d say it would be no more than 5 minutes faster. 20 minutes (reliable minutes) from Expo to Rose Quarter ain’t bad. Another 10 minutes max to Vancouver via Hayden Island, and that section will be much faster.
    But lightrail is by design a trade off between three different kinds of service at three different speeds: in street (10-15mph), in median (35 mph), grade separated (55 mph).

  37. To be clear, I’m not saying that the Yellow Line should have been built down I-5. (Long term I wouldn’t mind seeing another transit route between Portland and The Couv, one that’s faster; but I doubt that will be in the cards for a decade or two at least).

    Of course, it only matters if they build the CRC.

  38. I wouldn’t totally count out TOD along the Green Line… Lents and the Mall 205 area both seem like promising areas for this.

    Transit needs along the 205/82nd corridor are such that the Green Line can continue to serve as a faster option for park-and-riders and people transferring from east-west bus routes, while future enhancements along 82nd would serve more local riders/foot traffic.

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