Control Traffic Flow, Reduce Vehicle Speeds, Maximize Efficiency & Improve Vehicle Safety

We intend to take productive steps towards reducing overall traffic volume and reducing speeds so that residents can get in and out of their driveways safely, as well as use Cornell to access other parts of the City. We encourage multi-model use to maximize the efficiency and volume on Cornell. We plan to encourage multi-modal use to maximize the efficiency and volume on Cornell.

Some of the discussion topics the CRSC has considered include:

  • Create a holistic approach & solution to excessive traffic volume and speeds.

o Consider the impact of any proposed changes to Cornell on other streets and neighborhoods.

o Ensure that any proposed changes do not aggravate existing deficiencies or increase congestion and vehicle speeds on nearby streets.

  • Incorporate travel demand management techniques.
  • Increase traffic enforcement for maintaining slower traffic.
  • Use traffic signaling along the Cornell Road corridor to divert traffic where appropriate and to create gaps in remaining traffic.
  • Keep traffic counts equal to or lower than current volumes.
  • Coordinate and collaborate with the City of Portland, Washington and Multnomah Counties, Metro, and other stakeholder agencies when developing solutions.
  • Acknowledge and incorporate Fire/Life Safety access considerations. Thoughtfully approach traffic calming designs, rather than simply installing additional signage.
  • Work with TriMet to establish a bus route along Cornell serving the four neighborhoods along the corridor.

What are your experiences and suggestions for controlling the traffic flow and efficiency along Cornell Road?

There are 9 comments .

Jeff Douglas —

The area is already close to grid-lock. Try getting on Hwy 26 in the morning then creeping up Sylvan Hill. Cornell and Burnside are already busy for their grade and type of roads, and will turn into a death trap. Wideing Cornell will ruin Forest Park.

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james pollock —

We only use Cornell Rd and Lovejoy on a few occasions but it is obvious to any intelligent person that the backup of traffic up the hill into residential areas is caused by the stupid use of blinking red lights and key intersections that forces all traffic to individually stop and one by one proceed. The use of a normal red/green light adjusted to traffic volume would help greatly. this is also a problem at the intersection of Cornell and Skyline. Traffic managers for the city are blind.

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    lanny gower —

    I have commuted by bike over cornell for 24 years during rush hour traffic. It is not safe for cyclists as people drive way too fast and are not willing to wait to get around cyclist. A cheap and immediate potential solution would be to lower speed limit to 30 mph and enforce with traffic cams. The commuters who should be on 26 in their cars may then get off cornell.

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    Peter Stark —

    Part of our draft plan includes modifying the intersection and signal timing at Miller and Cornell to encourage east bound users to use Miller as the default route to downtown. At the same time it is not the CRSC’s intent to push our problem on someone else’s turf. Along with changes at Miller, we would suggest adding a signal at Skyline Burnside and another below the tunnel to meter and manage the traffic on Burnside.

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dan moore —

To be effective we will need a commute time toll system like “Good To Go!” in WA, used in Seattle on the Evergreen Point Floating Bridge. Cars would not have to stop– their passes would be automatically read. The key is to give locals totally free passes. Near locals a small fee and further away folks pay more. Monitor results. If it isn’t working well enough– jack up the fees! Use income to pay for improvements. How about that idea?

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Chris Andon —

Agree with James above. Gridlock is forced bc of two bad intersections with poorly managed traffic control devices- skyline/Cornell 4 way stop and 25th and Lovejoy blinking red 4 way stop. Manage those 2 intersections better on a time of day and traffic sensor management system and problem pretty much solved saving millions of gallons of gas/air pollution, and wasted time. Frustrating that it will take endless efforts/discussion/political gridlock, etc to avoid just trying that simple fix first as a ‘demo.’

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A. Betters —

I live in NW Forest Heights and use Cornell to access downtown Portland. In 7 years We have seen the traffic congestion increase dramatically.
We are retired and moved here from California in 2005 and have observed the traffic on 26 going into the city increase also but have seen nor read anything about redesigning and fixing the bottlenecks created by the one lane “tunnel” approaches to the major roads.
I agree that a metered traffic light system is a positive solution to the intersections at Cornell & Lovejoy and @ Skyline & Cornell but until the City corrects the problem at the bottom of 26, congestion will continue to increase.

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Jim Thrower —

In passing through one Burlingame neighborhood I have noticed signs posted that say “SET THE PACE’ , encouraging any driver to do the speed limit, thereby slowing all traffic through the neighborhood. It seems to work for them. Would it help on Cornell?

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    Peter Stark —

    Jim, I like the idea. I’m going to add your suggestion to our list of “examples” to solve traffic issues on Cornell. BTW we have radar speed monitors (like the have in Forest Heights) and Metered stop lights that keep traffic at a steady-manageable pace on the list as well. Unfortunately adding a stop light is very expensive and may not be possible with current budgets.

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