Two giant concrete limitations positioned on the Columbia Slough path close to Portland Worldwide Raceway limit entry to a preferred bike route and have raised security issues.
“These limitations must be referred to as widowmakers.”
— a reader on Instagram
I first noticed these Thursday afternoon and went again in the present day for a re-assessment. One is positioned proper close to the highest of the small hill close to east of the railroad overpass and Columbia Wastewater Remedy Plant. The opposite one is situated on the threshold of the chain-link fence simply west of the North Denver Avenue entrance close to Portland Worldwide Raceway (PIR).
Whereas I’ve simply confirmed with Portland Parks and Recreation they’ve been positioned to stop individuals from driving vehicles on the trail (a problem that has change into extra frequent these days), in addition they limit entry by different varieties of mobility gadgets like wheelchairs and adaptive bicycles. A large bicycle with a trailer additionally couldn’t round it, so the path is successfully closed to many customers. One other problem is that neither of the limitations have reflective materials on them and can be very exhausting to see at night time — particularly since this path just isn’t well-lit. There are additionally no indicators to warn path customers to decelerate and anticipate a barrier.
The limitations are method too heavy to maneuver with out specialised gear.
“These limitations must be referred to as widowmakers,” shared one reader after I shared a picture on Instagram. “I do know that’s an apparent reply they don’t need autos driving down these paths. However with not having any reflective gadgets or any form of illumination on these limitations I might think about using this path at night time could possibly be treacherous and deadly.” One other reader mentioned, “I used to be so stunned coming across the nook and needed to slam on my brakes.”
Some persons are pleased to have one thing that retains drivers away. “If it retains us from having to cope with individuals driving vehicles down there, I’m pleased to not get run over whereas utilizing the trail,” learn one other remark.
The slough path is managed by Portland Parks and Rec.
PP & R Public Data Officer Mark Ross confirmed a couple of minutes in the past that Metropolis of Portland workers positioned the limitations to, “Deter unlawful automobile entry on the trail.”
He added that, “Parks & Recreation workers are transferring them apart for now because the blocks might not be seen by cyclists or different path customers in dim mild. We’re contemplating different choices/modifications. We additionally wish to make sure that individuals utilizing mobility gadgets can entry the trail. Our priorities are security and path accessibility for acceptable use.”
Ross has assured me that, “They’ve both already been moved or are being moved proper now.”
We’ll preserve monitor of this and ensure Parks will get this proper. Please share your experiences and any updates you see within the coming days.