TriMet to start bus service planning/outreach in SE and around Milwaukie MAX

Title says it all.  TriMet is now starting its planning and public outreach activities in preparation of the opening of Portland-Milwaukie MAX next year, and is looking for public input, particularly on the question of how bus service should be reorganized around PMLR.  A set of guidelines for the process can be found here.  The SE quadrant will also be the focus of broader Service Enhancement Planning (SEP) activities in 2015.  (This calendar year, the focus will be in the SW quadrant, in harmony with the SW Corridor).

But back to the SE.  The things noted in the guidelines look appropriate to me; major issues being considered include:

  • Minimizing duplicative bus service following the general Portland-Milwaukie alignment
  • Limiting the number of bus lines that end in downtown Milwaukie. Instead, some north-south lines could connect with east-west lines to create longer routes.
  • Moving three bus lines onto the new light rail bridge, allowing these lines to avoid traffic congestion on and around the Ross Island Bridge

Some thoughts after the jump.

McLoughlin north of Milwaukie is an expressway with few fronting businesses (some, but few), it seems there is little reason to keep bus service on this street.  Parallel local bus service on 17th/Milwaukie and on 39th both are highly important.  There is probably no need to continue express service between Milwaukie and Portland once PMLR open (discontinuing such service is standard practice when new MAX lines open–there are express busses presently to Tigard, Tualatin, Oregon City, etc; but none to Gresham or Hillsboro).

I do like the idea of not having so many lines end at transit center, but be through-routed.  Gateway, Beaverton, and Milwaukie all manage to rather completely warp surrounding bus service, like miniature black holes with an event horizon of several miles.  And once the new Sellwood Bridge opens, restoring service across it (especially a crosstown bus to Burlingame and points west, not just an alternate way downtown) should be a priority.  Direct service between SE and Lake Oswego would be a useful thing as well.

But don’t tell me!  Tell TriMet.


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7 responses to “TriMet to start bus service planning/outreach in SE and around Milwaukie MAX”

  1. I think “Limiting the number of bus lines that end in downtown Milwaukie” may be in response to complaints about parked, possibly idling buses and not just trying to limit needed transfers, though through routing can reduce labor and vehicle time spent out of service at layovers which become mid-route points.

  2. I would run a cross town line from somewhere east of the SE Fuller MAX station on the Green Line to Sellwood via Johnson Creek Blvd, connecting to the new Orange Line at Tacoma/Johnson Creek Station, then across the new Sellwood bridge and up Tayor’s Ferry & Spring Garden to Barbur at 19th (where we can expect a station of some kind), and finally out Multnomah Blvd to the Village, Garden Home and Wash. Sq via Olson.
    Perhaps the western end of this line would come with the redesign of service in the SW corridor.

  3. Why not reinstate route 40 Johns Landing when the new Sellwood bridge opens. Route used to serve John’s landing area before crossing sellwood bridge service tacoma st residents before headed towards milwaukie.

  4. What if…
    Line 33 we’re connected to the former John’s Landing line? That way riders would still have a one-seat ride from Gladstone and Oak Grove to Downtown Portland or the option to transfer to MAX at SE Park Ave or at McLoughlin and Tacoma.

    Line 29 we’re routed more directly down Lake Rd to the Main St MAX Station? Line 32 could be rerouted north on what was line 29, until SE Oak St. Then line 32 would cross Hwy 224, turn onto SE Monroe St, then onto SE 32nd Ave and would head north to the Tacoma St MAX Station. This would allow Line 75 to be rerouted to the Tacoma St Station as well. Line 152 could be rerouted onto SE Washington St to fill in the missing service.

    We had a new crosstown line from Lake Oswego to Lents? It could start at Lake Oswego TC and run with lines 35 and 36 to the Sellwood Bridge. Head east to SE 17th, then north to SE Bybee, east to 28th, north to Woodstock, east to 97th Ave. Line 70 could run more frequently on 13th Ave, which is much better served north-south then would be with turns at Tacoma. Line 19 could also serve 32nd-Rex more frequently during the day too.

    Express runs we’re added to Line 35 and it we’re extended to Clackamas Communtiy College? This would solve some of the lost service to Oregon City once, unfortunately, line 99 is discontinued. Line 35 would run at rush hour along 7th and Mollala Ave following former line 99 from OCTC to CCC. Then would add express service during rush hour to Hwy 43 with only designated express stops from OCTC to SW Taylor’s Ferry Rd, buses would make all stops after that to Downtown Portland.

    Line 154 we’re connected to Clackamas Heights instead of turning around or interlining at Oregon City TC? Line 34 currently serves this area with only a very small number of rush hour trips a day. Switching service in this area to line 154 would provide somewhat improved bus service to the large infill development along Holcomb and to the public housing development at the end of the line.

    Line 79 being rerouted through Oregon City to CCC? Line 32 could end at OCTC and line 79 could take line 32’s route to CCC. This would provide more frequent service to CCC in the future as line 79 is proposed to become a frequent service line someday. This would also provide direct service on TriMet from CCC to the Clackamas Town Center. Riders from CCC would then have a new destination option, as currently all TriMet lines serving CCC proceed to Milwaukie and Portland.

    A new line along South End Rd? A line that runs in both directions along 99E to Soth End Rd, then north to Warner Parrot, east to Leland Rd, south to Meyers Rd, east to Hwy 213, then north to CCC. This creates better servce then what was provided before, instead of a loop to and from OCTC, by connecting the South End neighborhood with CCC and the Hilltop area. Perhaps a new go at line 153?

    Let me know what you folks think.

  5. While generally a good notion not to compete with yourself, there’s something to be said for retaining some form of bus service parallel to the MAX route serving more local stops.

  6. True, but I don’t see local stops on McLaughlin north of the county line. Are there any now? Do they get much use?
    TriMet agreed 10 years ago to keep the same number of bus service hours in N. Portland when Interstate MAX opened. So 5 bus hours were used to make the 75 an FS bus, beef up the 6, and add a 2nd bus to the 85.
    A good place to start the conversation about with bus service around the MLR would be how to reconfigure lines like the 30 Estacade ($9.14/ride), 34 River Rd. ($7.56/ride), and 28 Lindwood ($6.93/ride) to get their cost/ride down below $5. Cost/ride on the new MAX line will likely be in the $2 range. Local service does not come cheap.

    • Well there are quite a few commercial and industrial sites, particularly in between OR224 and Johnson Creek/Tacoma. And there are a few (ahem) performing arts venues along McLoughlin as well…

      Whether or not these are sufficient trip generators to merit local bus service along McLoughin, I don’t know.

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