Neighbors fear the worst at redesigned crosswalk in SE Portland

Neighbors fear the worst at redesigned crosswalk in SE Portland »Play Video
Can you see it? There's a sign behind that power pole indicating there's a crosswalk here at Southeast 113th and Stark. The difficulty in seeing the sign is one of the reasons neighbors are concerned this redesigned crosswalk is dangerous.

PORTLAND, Ore. – Residents of one neighborhood are afraid someone is going to be killed in what seems a poorly designed new crosswalk on one of Portland’s busiest streets.

The crosswalk is at Southeast 113th and Stark next to Ventura Park.

Neighbors say they see the same kind of crash over and over since the city reworked the crosswalk.

One issue is that signs for the crosswalk are behind a power pole, and the viewing angle is even worse in a car.

The other problem, neighbors say, is a concrete island the city just built in what used to be a turn lane.

They say the sign in the island was mowed down by a panicked driver on Saturday. It was put back up Monday and mowed down again.

There are parts of cars in the middle of Stark and also pieces of cars on the sidewalk.

“I’ve seen four people hit the sign, knock the sign completely over, and I’ve seen two fender benders in this lane from people slamming on their brakes to let the person cross, and they get rear ended,” said Nick Scotton, who lives nearby. “I’ve got a 4-year-old niece who plays at the park. We come across this street, and it kind of scares me.”

He also said he’s seen drivers slam on their breaks to miss people in the crosswalk.

And the third thing that scares neighbors is the bus stop that straddles the crosswalk.

Neighbors have been complaining to the Portland Bureau of Transportation. They want the city to put in flashing lights to warn drivers about the new concrete island.

On Thursday, city's transportation bureau officials sent an email to KATU, saying they planned to make these improvements:

  • Move the pedestrian sign to the utility.
  • Add vertical reflective wands of the island to improve visibility.
  • Move the island sign to the middle.