Checking in on the carfree Blumenauer Bridge over I-84

Checking in on the carfree Blumenauer Bridge over I-84

The arch pieces were constructed off-site and are now being moved into place.
(Photos: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland/BikePortland)

Drawing of finished product.

By next spring or summer you’ll be able to bike across Interstate 84 on 7th Avenue between the central eastside and the Lloyd: No more snaking onto sidewalks or risking life and limb on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard or SE Grand Avenue; no more riding all the way up to NE 12th to get across the freeway.

The Portland Bureau of Transportation has been working on the $14 million Congressman Earl Blumenauer Bicycle and Pedestrian Bridge for nearly a year now and — judging by a recent visit to the construction site — things are about to get very interesting. As you can see in my photos, the 300-foot arch pipes and steel girders are in place and landings on both sides of the span have been prepped.

The new bridge will stretch 475 feet over Sullivan’s Gulch and will be 24-feet wide. There will be a 10-foot wide sidewalk and 14-foot wide lane in the middle for two-way bicycle, scooter, and other micromobility vehicle users. Each side of the bridge will become plazas that integrate with the street grid.

Here’s what I saw at the site a few days ago:

View of the north landing from the SE Grand Ave overpass.

Another shot of the arch moving into position at the south landing.

View of the southern landing from the north side.



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View looking south across the Gulch from the north landing.

View looking southwest toward the central eastside from an elevated perspective in the Lloyd.

Closer look at the south landing site.

View of the future bridge entrance from the existing bike lane on NE 7th in the Lloyd.

The completion of this bridge will be a game-changer for cycling connectivity between the central eastside and the Lloyd. It will also be an important marquee to signal Portland’s commitment to carfree travel.

And in other exciting bridge news, PBOT just announced that the Gideon Overcrossing is now open! Stay tuned for a full report on that bridge soon.

— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and jonathan@bikeportland.org
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