TriMet hears from community about SW Corridor proposal

The process is still in planning stages

TriMet MAX / File photo
TriMet MAX / File photo

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — TriMet is seriously exploring the idea of a new light rail light in Southwest Portland and Tigard but first they want to hear from the community about where to put it.

The long underserved SW Portland, Tigard and Tualatin corridor could get it’s own MAX line, new and improved bus service or both.

“It has been a long time coming,” said Clay Thompson with TriMet. “We have more businesses locating out here and the Tigard Triangle is a difficult area to reach with buses and just in general.”

More about TriMet’s plans for the Southwest corridor 

Right now it’s still in the planning stage, but TriMet wants to add a new 12-mile MAX line from downtown Portland that would also include walking, biking, roadway and bus service improvements.

The only question is where to put it. Barbur Boulevard is likely to be impacted but there is talk about I-5 as well.

At a series of town hall meetings like one held on Nov. 8, TriMet is listening to the community’s needs and concerns.

“I’m at the point now that if I want to take a bus I have to take the Lewis and Clark bus,” SW Portland resident Ted Scheinman said. “They will let people in the neighborhood get on but you can’t get anywhere from there at all.”

The idea is part of a larger improvement plan to make transit better in the entire metro area. Red line upgrades, parking relocation and electric buses are some of the ways getting around could change to meet the growing demand.

“We have to spend an hour and a half getting home and to work every day so there’s time that we’ve wasted and as long as we continue to do nothing, we’re going to continue to wast more time,” Tigard resident Lonnie Martinez said.