129th Bike Lane Project
Safety improvements in motion for SE 129th Avenue
THE CITY OF HAPPY VALLEY AND ITS ENGINEERING TEAM HAVE BEEN WORKING ON PLANS TO IMPROVE SE 129TH AVENUE FROM SE MOUNTAIN GATE ROAD NORTH TO SE SCOTT CREEK LANE. SE 129TH AVENUE IS ONE OF THE FEW MAJOR THOROUGHFARES LEADING INTO AN ESTABLISHED AREA OF THE CITY, DEVELOPED WITH SINGLE-FAMILY HOMES, CHURCHES, AND FIRE AND POLICE STATIONS. IT IS ALSO A POPULAR ROUTE LEADING TO SEVERAL SCHOOLS, HAPPY VALLEY PARK, AND HIGHLY UTILIZED RETAIL AREAS.
THIS STRETCH OF ROADWAY DOES NOT POSSESS SIDEWALKS OR BIKE LANES, AND THERE ARE NO NEARBY ALTERNATIVES FOR SAFE CROSSINGS. IMPROVEMENTS AIM TO INCREASE TRAVEL SAFETY IN THIS AREA AND BETTER SUPPORT ALL MODES OF TRANSPORT. ULTIMATELY, THE IMPROVEMENTS WILL MAKE VEHICLE, PEDESTRIAN AND BICYCLIST TRAVEL SAFER FOR BOTH RESIDENTS AND VISITORS TO THE AREA.
Improvements to this area of SE 129th Avenue will increase safety for all modes of transport. Visibility for travelers will be enhanced and more space will be created for ease of movement. Often prone to more hazards during inclement weather and limited containment, improvements to this area will also help mitigate current trouble spots that can be especially dangerous for motor vehicles.
The proposed project will involve street widening and re-striping to allow for the creation of bike lanes on both sides of SE 129th Avenue. A retaining wall of varying height up to 10 feet will be constructed behind the proposed sidewalk as an added safety measure. Additionally, a pedestrian crossing signal will be installed at the intersection of SE 129th Avenue and SE Scott Creek Lane.
More specifically, this project will consist of the following improvements:
- Shared use path on the east side of the roadway for bike and pedestrians
- New southbound bike lane
- Retaining walls and fencing
- New asphalt pavement overlay
- Undergrounding of overhead utility lines
- Installation of additional streetlights along the roadway
- Stormwater system improvements including water quality treatment of surface runoff with green street planters
- Pedestrian crossing using a rectangular rapid flashing beacon (RFFB) at Scott Creek Lane
- Bike lane and crosswalk striping and symbolization
Prior to formal construction, this project will require the removal of some trees along the corridor on the east side of the roadway. The purpose of this is to ensure adequate spacing for the necessary additions coming later this year. The design team was careful to protect ALL trees within the Mt. Scott Creek buffer as well as the tree canopy on the west side of the roadway. In order to safely carry out this portion of the project and ensure crew members can carefully maneuver the necessary equipment required to complete these removals, this stretch of roadway will be closed for approximately three weeks (Feb. 8-Mar. 1).
It is important to note that the City has a robust tree replacement requirement and tree permits are required for any type of tree removal. As a recognized Tree City USA, Happy Valley is truly committed to ensuring the City’s tree canopy remains healthy and strong. To this end, the City is working closely with the City Arborist to ensure these removal efforts are carried out carefully and comply with the federal regulations of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA), which requires any removal be completed prior to Mar. 1.
The required preparatory work for this project is slated to begin February 8 and continue to March 1. The detour map shows how traffic will be officially routed. The trees to be removed will be marked with flagging and the vegetation removal limits will be marked with stakes. The City Arborist will be helping provide additional oversight of this work. The road will be closed to accommodate this activity in efforts to ensure the safety of those performing the work. There are high voltage power lines in the vicinity of the trees slated to be removed, so road closure will allow for additional safety protection. The City will post signs ahead of time to alert travelers of the traffic delays and utilize electronic reader boards to provide additional information regarding alternate travel routes. Please note, provisions will be made for emergency vehicles to utilize the road during construction when needed. The City will be attending to traffic flow and will be proactive in mitigating traffic concerns through use of traffic feedback signs and surveillance by law enforcement. Residents are encouraged to contact the City if an influx of traffic is observed on neighborhood streets that is disruptive.
The project is scheduled to go out to bid at the end of March 2021, with construction slated to officially begin in June 2021. Work for this project will continue through the end of November 2021, with plans for completion by early December 2021.
SE 129th Avenue will be closed to traffic at various points during construction. This is for the safety of crew members who will be completing the work. The detour map shows how traffic will be officially rerouted. Please note, provisions will be made for emergency vehicles to utilize the road during construction when needed. The City will be attending to traffic flow and will be proactive in mitigating traffic concerns through use of traffic feedback signs and surveillance by law enforcement. Residents are encouraged to contact the City if an influx of traffic is observed on neighborhood streets that is disruptive.
Roadway improvements on 129th Avenue are being funded by a grant issued by Metro. Securing these funds was a united effort made possible by not only the City, but by residents from the area, teachers, and business owners, who advocated strongly for these increased safety measures.