Update on Multnomah County Roads Capital Improvement Plan

The following is from the Multnomah County Roads:

We Heard You

In spring 2018 we held open houses around the county and online. We wanted to hear from you about our Evaluation Criteria, Project List, and Priorities for the Multnomah County Roads Capital Improvement Plan. The plan is an effort to take a 20-year look at the capital needs of the county’s urban and rural roads.
 
We heard about a number of issues that are important to you. High-crash sites were reported, as well as problem areas for long-standing and dangerous high-speed driving. We also heard that more immediate maintenance and safety concerns limit some peoples’ vision for long-range planning. Biking and walking are on the majority of your minds.
 
We also heard that long-term needs and concerns differ in urban and rural areas as well as in specific areas in the county. Residents in the western edge of the county are concerned with cut-through commuter traffic. Increased industry and shipping are affecting traffic volumes near Marine Drive in the east. And in the rural east, people are concerned about wear-and-tear from tourism, and logging in the Columbia River Gorge.
 
Evaluation Criteria

We also heard from you about our project Evaluation Criteria. We asked you to rank our seven criteria (Safety, Sustainability, Mobility, Asset Management, Equity, Resiliency, Emergency Management). With feedback from you and our project partners, Safety and Equity appear to be the most important criteria. As we begin to evaluate projects, those that improve Safety and Equity will have higher priority.

Collecting Data and Mapping Deficiencies

To better understand the conditions of our roads, we scanned all 270 miles of County maintained roads using a laser survey called LIDAR. The scans of the roadways went from top to bottom and side-to-side, similar to Google Streetview.

The scans allow the project team to extract and analyze detailed information for 11 aspects of our county roads:

  • Travel lanes

  • Bike lanes

  • Driveways

  • Landscape buffers

  • Legends – examples could include turn arrows, bicycle lane stencils, RR XING stencils, etc.

  • Shoulders

  • Obstacles

  • Sidewalk data

  • Turning lane/width

  • Medians

  • Curbs

The project team is mapping these 11 pieces of information including the size, shape, and condition of all. The County will have this data to use in maintenance, project design and construction, and decision-making for leveraging funds. We will share this info with you during the next round of outreach and open houses in early 2019.
 
The information collected and mapped through the LIDAR scan will be added to the County’s existing maps showing things like landslide hazards, guardrail condition, culverts and ditches. This comprehensive map will help us see where there are deficiencies in our road system and help us identify what we need to build to improve the system.

Next Steps

Throughout the fall, we are compiling and analyzing the LIDAR data. We will return in early 2019 with a full range of public outreach including a project update, open houses, an online open house, and numerous briefings with community groups. Stay tuned; in the next round of outreach we will share which projects the county wants to add to the final plan and how well they meet our community values. We look forward to hearing your thoughts during the next outreach phase.

Stay Tuned

In the next round of outreach we will share which projects the county wants to add to the final plan and how well they meet our community values. We look forward to hearing your thoughts during the next outreach phase.