Downtown Portland TriMet project affects riders and businesses - KPTV - FOX 12

Downtown Portland TriMet project affects riders and businesses

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PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

A major TriMet project broke ground in downtown Portland on Sunday, impacting commute times for MAX riders. But some local business owners said it’s affecting them too.

Construction started Sunday on the multi-million dollar TriMet project, which is supposed to improve aging MAX lines near Southwest Morrison and Yamhill.

TriMet said the Blue, Green and Red lines will be delayed and run on special schedules. They also said commuters should plan for an extra 30 to 45 minutes on all their trips.

“That kind of sucks, a 45-minute delay since most of my trips on the MAX are like less than 45 minutes,” one rider said. 

Besides MAX riders being impacted, the manager of the store Bridge & Burn said businesses close to the construction are also facing setbacks.

“I think it’s probably necessary and we as a business understand that, but still hurts us in the short term,” said Josh Thomas.

He said one of the biggest problems is closed sidewalks.

“Well, whenever you cut the entryway of the sidewalk off, obviously, it stops the flow of traffic there,” said Thomas. “People are on the other side of the street, not our side of the street.”

Other business owners FOX 12 spoke with in the area said with all the construction, they’re concerned shoppers might think they’re not open.

For Thomas, he’s still encouraging people to come out to his shop and others.

“If you come down 12th, find some parking, walk on over, come say hey,” he said.

TriMet did put out signs Sunday letting people know businesses are open. The project is expected to last three weeks. 

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