Neighbors say road changes in SE Portland are dangerous

Neighbors in Southeast Portland say new road changes are dangerous.
Published: May. 31, 2023 at 8:15 PM PDT
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PORTLAND, Ore. (KPTV) - Neighbors say roadway improvements in Southeast Portland are dangerous. Bike lanes on Southeast Mill Street have been re-striped this week, but neighbors say it’s limiting access to Lincoln Park.

The new bike lanes go from Southeast 130th Street to 135th Street, and new “No Parking” signs have also been added.

“What they’ve done, this actually created a safety issue by having to have their children cross the street rather than having parking on that side of the street where they can unload them curbside and not be out on the side of traffic where they were put in danger,” says concerned neighbor, Rick Ohmie.

While the park side of the street is bike lane only and no parking allowed, across the street, just north of Douglas High School, they don’t allow parking 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. on school days. This forces families to park further away from the park.

Ohmie says he saw a family trying to get to the park Wednesday morning.

“The guy’s taking out his two children, who’s like two or three years old, on the side of traffic, on the side of a truck, to take them across the street to the park,” says Ohmie. “He wanted to make sure he was parking legally, and not getting a ticket.”

PBOT released a statement regarding the concerns and new improvements below:

The 4M Neighborhood Greenway Project is making it safer and more comfortable for everyone to bike in the area. SE Mill Street has historically had no parking during school hours on the north side of the street. It’s a busy area with David Douglas High School on the north side of the street, and a park and elementary school to the south.

We heard from the local school communities that keeping the parking on the north side of the street would be best, as we add bike lanes to the corridor.

In response to input from the community, we are planning to add on-street parking on SE 135th Avenue, adjacent to the park, just south of Mill Street.

We have heard concern about crossing the street amid the volume of traffic there. To slow down the vehicle traffic and make crossing the street safer for everyone, the project has built four speed bumps on SE Mill, between SE 130th Avenue and 135th Avenue. We also plan to enhance the crosswalks at the intersection of SE Mill and 135th to make people biking and walking more visible there.

“It still scares me to see that you lose control of one of those children, if they step out of this road where you’re unloading them street side that could have catastrophic ramifications for that family and the driver,” says Ohmie.