50 percent, and counting!
The Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Transit Project has reached an exciting milestone: We’re 50 percent complete.
And, we have a grand opening date, too: The region’s sixth MAX line is scheduled to begin transporting riders between Downtown Portland, Milwaukie and north Clackamas County on Saturday, September 12, 2015. (Mark your calendar… There will be festivities!)
We started construction back in July 2011, and crews have been hard at work building 10 new MAX stations: one in Downtown Portland, one in the South Waterfront area, six in Southeast Portland, one in Milwaukie and one in north Clackamas County.
Thanks for your patience with the temporary road closures this summer related to project construction! It will be well worth it come 2015, when fewer cars are on the road thanks to the handy new MAX service nearby.
A convenient new north-south transit option
2015 may be a ways off, but it’s exciting to think about the convenient new transportation option this project will bring for the many people who need to get around in the fast-growing areas of Southeast Portland, Milwaukie and north Clackamas County.
For one, commuters in the congested McLoughlin Boulevard/Highway 99E corridor will finally have an alternative to sitting in traffic. By the year 2030, the new line is expected to increase transit commutes from within this corridor to Downtown Portland by 20 percent, and reduce weekday car trips by more than 9,100. It will reduce travel time between Milwaukie and the South Waterfront by an estimated 58 percent, and between Milwaukie and Portland State University by 29 percent.
Commuters in the congested McLoughlin Boulevard/Highway 99E corridor will finally have an alternative to sitting in traffic.
Creating good jobs
There’s another important story behind this project, and it’s about jobs. To date, the project has supported more than 6,800 direct, indirect and induced jobs. This includes contracting opportunities for 111 Disadvantaged Business Enterprises who have so far received $115 million in contracts.
The product of partnerships
As you may know, light rail projects are regional collaborations that take 12-15 years to go from an idea to construction and opening. Initiated in 1999 as part of Metro‘s long-term regional transportation plan, the Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Transit Project is the result of a partnership among the Federal Transit Administration, the State of Oregon, Clackamas County, Metro, the City of Milwaukie, Multnomah County, the City of Oregon City, the Oregon Department of Transportation, the City of Portland, the Portland Development Commission and TriMet. Our project partners are picking up 95 percent of the cost of the project, and we are covering the remaining 5 percent.
Stay in the loop
At this important milestone, we’re proud to report that the project is both on time and on budget. As construction continues, you can keep up on our progress when you “Like” the PMLR page on Facebook. And there is much more project history and details at our project website.