Southwest Corridor – Light Rail Planning

The Southwest Corridor plan is on the move

traffic 99w

Traffic congestion can be one of the biggest threats to livability. It impacts business production and delivery and increases travel time unpredictability for everyone. As individual intersections and corridors become more congested and operating characteristics deteriorate, this adversely impacts the entire transportation system.

The Southwest Corridor has long been considered a major transit passageway, and with increasing population and employment opportunities, there is an ongoing need for reliable, safe and convenient ways to move around the southwest Portland and southeast Washington County communities. The Southwest Corridor Plan identifies transit, bicycle, roadway and pedestrian improvements to address these challenges.

Washington County is partnering with Metro, TriMet, Oregon Department of Transportation and the cities of Beaverton, Durham, King City, Sherwood, Tigard, Tualatin and Portland in this planning effort. In 2013 these partners worked with the public to develop an investment vision of  parks, trails, sidewalks, road improvements and transit to support community goals along the Southwest Corridor. A new high-capacity transit (HCT) line is a critical component in this vision, and based on technical analysis and public engagement, the steering committee identified light rail transit (LRT) as the preferred HCT mode for the Southwest Corridor in May 2016.

Max train 185th

LRT provides an alternative to driving, reducing congestion and carbon impacts. A Southwest Corridor LRT line is the spine of the improvements envisioned for the corridor, including north, east, south and west roadway connectivity. It is a significant investment over the next 20-plus years to carry passengers reliably with long-term adaptability to ridership. It also provides an  opportunity for redevelopment to meet future community needs with more housing and retail/business offerings. New bike, pedestrian and road projects are included in the plans to improve access to the stations and the corridor.

Bicyclist Max

A light rail transit line in the Southwest Corridor will connect from the fashion and lifestyle shopping center of Bridgeport Village in Tualatin to the transportation hub of Downtown Portland, with connections to MAX lines heading west, north and east, as well as numerous bus lines reaching many communities throughout the region. Stations in between could include: Marquam Hill, Burlingame, Barbur Transit Center, Tigard Triangle, downtown Tigard, Portland Community College Sylvania Campus and Oregon Health and Science University. Alternative alignments are now being evaluated through a federally mandated environmental impact assessment to analyze the potential impacts and identify any necessary mitigation strategies. The outcomes of this first assessment will be ready for public review in early 2018.

Metro is leading this planning effort. A draft of the Proposed Range of Alternatives for Environment Review, Steering Committee meeting documents, staff recommendations, background materials and information about public input opportunities are available:

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