Making transit better
in North and Central Portland
The North/Central Service Enhancement Plan is a future vision for transit service in North Portland, Northwest Portland, Northeast Portland west of I-205, Southeast Portland west of I-205 and north of Division, and downtown.
We developed this new vision using public input gathered through surveys, focus groups, public forums and community meetings, and using data about existing and future population growth, employment trends and transportation patterns. The result is a vision that calls for two new bus lines that would strengthen the transit network for all riders, multiple changes to existing bus routes to allow access to more destinations, improved frequency and expanded hours of service on select bus lines, and new community/job connectors to provide transit service in areas that don’t make sense for traditional bus or MAX.
Vision for Transit in the Future
The sections below describe the specific improvements in the vision that will make it easier for North and Central Portlanders to get around on transit.
Better Access to Jobs
The vision calls for improved access to jobs between Rivergate and the Columbia Corridor with new service and improved frequency along Marine Dr. and Columbia Blvd. Also included in the vision are improved access and frequency to jobs on Swan Island and Delta Park Center on N. Hayden Meadows Dr.
An Improved Neighborhood Network
This vision includes changing the routing of several existing bus lines that together will strengthen the bus network throughout Northeast Portland and provide access to many more people. Changes include improved service between Cully and downtown Portland, access between Northeast and Southeast Portland via 20th Ave., and direct access between Northwest and Northeast Portland via the Fremont Bridge.
Less Waiting/Faster Trips
Many of our bus lines today function well, but would be more useful to riders with more frequency. As part of our standard practice, we regularly look at adding trips on all of our existing bus lines when we see that the number of people riding the bus exceeds the capacity that we currently provide. We envision additional frequency to lines serving Burnside/Stark, Broadway/Halsey, Rivergate/Marine Dr., Belmont/NW 23rd in the NW Industrial District, and Front Ave./St. Helens Rd.
Early and Late Service
Many people have told us that they want to be able to ride transit in the late night and early morning hours. This vision includes adding later and earlier service on lines that together serve the majority of North and Central Portland.
More Weekend Service
Most, but not all, of the bus lines in the North/Central area currently run 7 days per week. This vision includes adding weekend service to several lines that lack weekend service.
More Attractive and Efficient Transit
TriMet will continue to work with cities, counties and the Oregon Department of Transportation to identify opportunities for transit signal priority and other construction and service improvements to help our bus riders get to their destinations quickly, efficiently and with minimal delay. Opportunities could include intersection improvements, limited stop services, and even more significant bus line projects. TriMet will generally focus on the highest ridership and most frequent lines for these kinds of improvements to maximize the number of people who benefit from our efforts.
Making this Vision a Reality
Implementing this vision will depend on available resources and an ongoing annual review of opportunities and priorities with an emphasis on equity, demand, productivity, connections, and growth. In September 2015, TriMet’s Board of Directors approved an increase in the payroll and self-employment tax rate with revenues dedicated to new and improved service. This new revenue will fund a portion of this vision, phased in as the revenue grows over 10 years.
Division Transit Project
In addition to the proposed bus service improvements in this vision, the Division Transit Project will make traveling between Gresham and Downtown Portland, and between neighborhoods in the Southeast and Eastside, faster, easier and safer, with more reliable transit service — all to support better access to jobs and educational opportunities. An extensive bus service planning effort will identify further enhancements to support and connect to the new transit service, which could open in five years.