Sure, there were meetings. Lots of them. There was the approval by an advisory committee. And then there was adoption by City Council.
It was almost like a big tease. A far-off dream initiated, but not quite realized; woken up too soon and memories fading as the days went on. That’s what the Foster Transportation and Streetscape Plan has been over the last year: a plan with hope, but no actual movement after its inception. And that’s what it was 12 years prior when a previous plan was adopted by the City, only to be brought back to the drawing table more than a decade later before ever getting funded.
But alas, that far off-dream is creeping back into memory. And while we doze off again, we can start dreaming of the day when crossing Foster is not a life-or-death proposition; when biking to the Lents International Farmers Market, the Portland Mercado or Carts on Foster is the norm, not a risky endeavor; when our commercial district does more to keep people around than speeding through it.
That day is…well, we don’t know. But according to PBOT it should be sometime next Fall. Kind of. As of now, the Foster Transportation and Streetscape Plan is officially in the design engineering phase. And based on their timeline, that puts construction in late Fall of 2016. So that safe walking, driving and biking stuff? Let’s call it 2017.
We’ll take it.
While the plans for Foster won’t please everyone, there are certainly elements of it that should be welcomed by all. Trees, for example. (Who hates trees?) More lighting and visible crosswalks? Yeah, you gotta like that. Public art along the corridor, and wider sidewalks where they narrow to an absurdly small width east of 82nd? Yep, that too.
We won’t touch the whole cars -vs- pedestrians -vs- bikers debate (you all can do that in the comments section), but surely there are some things to get excited about. And we hope you do. We are.