The Sandy Blvd sidewalk grant proposal was rejected earlier this week by the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT). However, this may be good news: The project is now being reviewed for funding under a city sidewalk infill program, which could mean earlier funding and construction than under the original grant request.
In email on June 20, PBOT planning manager Paul Smith said:
Thank you for the completed Project Summary form for sidewalk infill on the north side of Sandy Blvd between NE Prescott and I-205 and for your testimony about this project at our June 1, 2011 public meeting. Since this project was estimated to cost about $100,000 in the recent East Portland in Motion effort, the project is better suited for funding under PDOT’s sidewalk infill program. We are investigating that possibility and will get back to you mid to late July.
So, for some clarification and background, the Project Summary grant proposal presented by SAN on June 1 sought funding from a pot of $6.6 million Regional Flexible Funds (RFF) program controlled by METRO for bike and pedestrian projects. RFF funds will not be released by METRO to PBOT until October 2013.
The final Sandy Blvd sidewalk Project Summary (PDF 800K) was submitted the next day by SAN to PBOT based on feedback at June 1 meeting. It included both sides of Sandy Blvd from NE 85th to the I-205 overpass. Thus the mixup about the scope of the sidewalk project in Paul’s email.
$8 million is reportedly earmarked for sidewalk infill in east Portland over the next five years as part of the East Portland in Motion project. Though Sumner neighborhood is technically in northeast Portland (because we’re west of the I-205 freeway), we were included in the study area for the East Portland in Motion project because we are east of NE 82nd Ave.
Besides the Sandy sidewalk project, the other project in Sumner included in the East Portland in Motion project list is the improvement of NE Prescott from NE 78th to NE 120th as a ‘neighborhood greenway’ in 2015-16. Both projects are shown in this project map (2.3 MB PDF).
For our previous post about the grant proposal, see Sumner files Metro grant request for sidewalk on Sandy Blvd.