PBA still 'concerned' about Better Naito's effect on congestion, calls for more study

PBA still 'concerned' about Better Naito's effect on congestion, calls for more study

Portland's chamber of commerce still isn't convinced that Better Naito, which turns one lane of vehicle travel into a bike and pedestrian pathway, doesn't add to congestion despite a recent city analysisshowing marginal effects for downtown drivers.

The Portland Business Alliance believes the city cherry-picks travel-time data to paint the project in a favorable light while not doing enough to evaluate the potential ripple effect on downtown congestion.

"We continue to be concerned about the impacts of Better Naito," said Marion Haynes, the Portland Business Alliance's vice president of external affairs. "And as we've evaluated some of the data that's been presented, we find that it lacks the type of thorough analysis that we would hope would occur on this project and others throughout the city."

Haynes said the Better Naito analysis raises questions about how the city will handle changes to major arterials elsewhere.

Portland transportation officials stand by the traffic analysis and point to a separate traffic survey commissioned by The Oregonian/OregonLive in 2016, which documented similar delays on the much-used road running along Waterfront Park.

"All of this analysis has consistently shown less than two minutes of delay for northbound drivers when Better Naito is in season," Dylan Rivera, transportation spokesman, said in an email.

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