This month, the City of Portland’s Bureau of Transportation released its proposal for an expanded network streetcars. The “concept corridor” for inner Northeast Portland is a streetcar line that runs from Riverplace to NE MLK & Killingsworth.
The ‘Portland Streetcar System Concept Plan’ Public Review Draft says:
The NE MLK Jr. Blvd. corridor, from NE Killingsworth to NE Broadway, has had limited success from previous urban revitalization eff orts. Aff ordable housing and some increased commercial activity has occurred, though there are still substantial gaps with vacant or underutilized property. A streetcar could
be the catalyst that has been missing, but its success in energizing urban revitalization may depend on the successful redesign of the whole streetscape. This could include transforming the segment into a more pedestrian-friendly street with streetcar service rather than a heavy traffi c through street. There is strong street front redevelopment potential with a moderate number of underutilized parcels.
MLK Boulevard is considered the stronger alternative to running a streetcar along Williams and Vancouver Avenues, due to heavier traffic along MLK. An earlier draft of the streetcare line for MLK involved eliminating the #6 bus line altogether as a redundancy, and while this proposal is vague on the subject (“Need to develop transit integration strategy that minimizes the need for transfers and optimizes transit utility for all system users”), it seems likely that the 6 would end at Killingsworth, if this line were to be built.
The full ‘Portland Streetcar System Concept Plan’ Public Review Draft is viewable online here; it’s a large pdf file, so be patient. It includes the currently proposed routes for a streetcar plan, as well as descriptions of each stage of the process of evaulating potential routes.