After more than a year of sometimes contentious meetings, a committee has voted to change the way bikes and cars share the road on North Williams Avenue in Portland. The Williams Avenue Traffic Operations and Safety Stakeholders Committee voted Tuesday on a plan to widen the street’s bike lane and create a shared lane for bikes and cars along a portion of the street. The plan also includes adding flashing crosswalk lights at two intersections.
Jerrell Waddell was one of two people out of the 26-member advisory committee who voted for a different option that would have provided more space for cars. He was on our show about this issue back in July, discussing his concerns about accessibility for African Americans in the neighborhood. He argued that African Americans typically tend to drive cars rather than ride bikes. He says he still has those concerns about the current plan.
The plan could still change between now and April 3, when an official recommendation will be released. The city will make its final decision sometime after that.
Do you live or work near N. Williams Avenue? Do you bike or drive on the street? How will these changes affect you?
- Ellen Vanderslice: Project Manager for the North Williams Traffic Operations Safety Project at the Portland Bureau of Transportation
- Jerrell Waddell: Assistant pastor at Life Change Christian Center and member of the Williams Avenue Traffic Operations and Safety Stakeholders Committee