Masks are now optional on Portland Streetcar (and TriMet) due to a recent change in federal law, but the CDC does recommend continuing to mask up on transit. We know our riders have mixed feelings about the mandate ending. We ask everyone to be respectful of others as we all adjust to this change.
News: Service Update
Multnomah County will be closing the Broadway Bridge to all traffic for maintenance work on Sunday, April 3, from 7:00 a.m. to as late as 7:00 p.m. Crews will be performing preventive maintenance, replacing signs, and repairing damaged areas of the deck and other structures.
Streetcar service across the bridge will be disrupted for the duration of the closure. A and B Loops will run across the Tilikum Crossing, turning back at NW 10th and Northrup on the west side and N Broadway and Ross on the east side.
TriMet's Line 17 bus will detour to the Steel Bridge during the closure.
Portland Streetcar, along with TriMet MAX and bus, will be free to ride after 8:00 p.m. on Friday, December 31st, to celebrate New Year's Eve. TriMet MAX will run extended late-night service until 3:00 a.m., offering revelers additional safe options to get home.
Ride transit and don't bother tapping your Hop card--even when transferring. The evening's free rides are sponsored by the Oregon Department of Transportation.
Portland Streetcar will run a Sunday schedule on Saturday, January 1, in observance of New Year's Day.
October 15 is National White Cane Safety Day, celebrating the achievements of blind and visually impaired people while reminding others that the white cane is an important tool to help blind people travel independently.
Portland Streetcar is committed to providing safe, accessible public transportation for all, and we work to accommodate blind and visually impaired riders through audio stop announcements, tactile pavement treatments at platforms and Braille onboard signage.
The White Cane Law for motorists reads:
“A totally or partially blind pedestrian who is carrying a predominately white cane (with or without a red tip), or using a guide dog, shall have the right-of-way. The driver of any vehicle approaching this pedestrian, who fails to yield the right-of-way, or to take all responsibility necessary precautions to avoid injury to this blind pedestrian, is guilty of a misdemeanor. Punishable by imprisonment in the county jail not exceeding six months, or by a fine of not less than five hundred dollars ($500) no more than one thousand dollars ($1,000), or both. This section shall not preclude prosecution under any other applicable provision of law.” – Vehicle Code #21963
Travel safety tips from the Braille Institute:
- Stop your car at least 5ft. from a crosswalk. Pedestrians who are visually impaired or blind may use the sound of your engine to locate crosswalk boundaries. If any part of your car is in the crosswalk, they may misjudge the safe area.
- Avoid honking at individuals using a white cane. People who are blind or visually impaired have no idea why you are honking.
- It is okay to ask if assistance is needed. Ask the person who is blind or visually impaired for permission before trying to assist. If the person asks you to help guide them, offer your arm. They will hold your arm just above the elbow to follow your path.
We ask all Portlanders to join us in learning about orientation and mobility to help provide a safer Portland for our blind and visually impaired neighbors.
Multnomah County will close the Broadway Bridge between 6:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. the weekend of July 10-11 for a structural inspection. This work will affect streetcar service over the bridge.
The A Loop will skip the stop at NW 9th and Lovejoy, continuing north on NW 10th to turn around and become a B Loop. Likewise, the B Loop will turn around at N Broadway and Ross to become an A Loop and continue on the east side.
For more information about the closure and structural inspection, click here.
This holiday weekend, ride free on Portland Streetcar, Max light rail or TriMet bus. As a partnership to encourage economic recovery, riders can shop, eat and explore without paying a fare Saturday through Monday!
Take transit and avoid the hassle of traffic and parking, wherever you go!
With record-high temperatures in Portland over 110 degrees Fahrenheit, the Portland Streetcar closed Sunday afternoon and will remain closed until Tuesday morning when cooler air moves through the region.
Sagging overhead wires, power issues on the Broadway Bridge and a downed tree limb on the overhead wires downtown all led to delays, speed restrictions and other problems on the system. Rather than leave riders stranded while trying to travel, all streetcars were returned to the maintenance yard Sunday afternoon.
Crews will work through Monday to ensure power issues are resolved and service is ready to be restored when temperatures decrease through Tuesday morning.
TriMet's regional MAX light rail system also suspended service due to similar issues with overhead wires and extreme heat. MAX service is also expected to resume Tuesday morning. TriMet buses are still running and riders without fare will not be turned away during this extreme weather event.
After a year of reduced service due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Portland Streetcar is adding back more frequency with a new schedule that begins Sunday, March 7. Peak service hours will return to 15-minute headways on the NS Line, providing two additional streetcars in service to the four running over the past year.
Service on the A and B Loops will remain at 20-minute headways to ensure enough spare vehicles for reliable service throughout the day.
The Federal Transit Administration announced this week the award of $440,000 to Portland Streetcar as part of the Public Transportation COVID-19 Research Demonstration Grant Program. Portland Streetcar and the Portland Bureau of Transportation submitted a proposal in Fall 2020 to fund measures to keep streetcars safer and provide better communication of public health guidelines to riders.
The proposal comprised three main elements:
- Replace cloth seat covers with nonporous, easy-to-sanitize vinyl;
- Install new, more variable message boards at streetcar stops to allow for more information to be communicated to riders; and
- Hire additional staff trained in current public health guidance to ensure vehicles are properly sanitized and staff are adhering to public health guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Funding totaling $15.8 million was allocated to 37 projects across the country to support strategies that develop, deploy and demonstrate solutions that improve the operational efficiency of transit agencies and enhance rider mobility during the COVID-19 public health emergency.
The federal award announcement comes as Oregonians await widespread rollout of COVID-19 vaccination and must remain vigilant in social distancing, wearing face coverings and otherwise working to prevent the spread of illness. Portland Streetcar riders are still required to wear masks on board and are asked to limit travel to only essential trips.
As a sudden, severe wind event hit Portland on Labor Day, thousands of Portlanders lost power and tree limbs were torn down across the region. Portland Streetcar service was interrupted throughout the day by limbs down across our Overhead Catenary System--the wires that provide power to streetcars in service--but significant damage was sustained by the wires along Grand Avenue, completely shutting down the B Loop for two days.
Portland Streetcar maintenance crews worked tirelessly to repair damage, inspect the system and get the B Loop up and running again by Wednesday afternoon. Below are some photos of the repair effort.
As a result of Governor Kate Brown's statewide "Stay Home, Save Lives" order issued Monday, March 23, Portland Streetcar will reduce regular weekday service to every 20 minutes between about 5:30 a.m. through about 11:30 p.m.
This change reflects a natural drop in ridership following guidelines around social distancing to slow the spread of COVID-19, and the adjusted schedule will allow us to provide adequate sick leave and protective measures for our operators, mechanics and other employees while ensuring reliable service without gaps in staffing.
We continue to ask that riders practice social distancing while riding, meaning providing at least six feet between riders at stops and on board. For continuing updates on Oregon's response to COVID-19, visit the Oregon Health Authority.
We are encouraging all of our riders and employees to do what they can to stay safe during the continued period of recommended "stay home, stay healthy" practices. We also serve multiple hospitals and many vital businesses and services in Portland, so we will continue to operate regular service.
Governor Kate Brown has issued a statewide "stay at home" order to prevent further spread of COVID-19, so we ask that riders avoid unnecessary trips to help give others the space they need to ride safely.
Right now, social distancing is one of the most effective ways to prevent the spread of COVID-19. On transit and in public, please keep at least six feet between you and other riders. Our operators will be driving with their cab doors closed to help maximize the benefits of distancing.
For more information about COVID-19 and illness prevention techniques, visit the Oregon Health Authority.
As COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) spreads in Oregon, we are closely monitoring the situation and keeping the health and safety of our riders, operators and staff as our highest priority.
We will continue operating regular service, but we ask that riders continue to heed the advice of public health agencies to stay home whenever possible, wash hands frequently and thoroughly, cough into a sleeve and practice social distancing--even while riding transit. When riding the streetcar, please do your best to distance yourself from other riders to help prevent the spread of illness to our most vulnerable neighbors.
Our customer service office will be closed beginning Monday, March 16, but riders can load value to Hop cards via myhopcard.com or at Safeway, Fred Meyer, Plaid Pantry, and several other retail locations. To limit the use of additional touchpoints on board the streetcar, we will be deactivating the onboard cash fare machines for the foreseeable future.
The situation is changing rapidly, so we will continue to provide updates through our Twitter account and the Alerts portion of the front page of our website.
The business access and transit (BAT) lane installed last spring on a segment of Northeast Grand Avenue has improved afternoon peak travel times by 25%, according to Portland Streetcar's analysis.
New striping, signage and a transit priority signal help the B Loop streetcar and TriMet Line 6 bus avoid congestion resulting from backups on the eastbound on-ramp to I-84, which have previously meant the streetcar would sometimes take as long as 15 minutes to move between the stops at Southeast Stark and Northeast Hoyt. The project was installed by the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) as part of a suite of transit priority projects in the central city.
On average, weekday streetcar travel times went down 25% between 3:00 and 6:00 p.m., with a dramatic 47% reduction at 5:30 p.m. This improvement in reliability means less time spent commuting and more time home with family and friends for Portland transit riders.
Portland Streetcar will continue to monitor the performance of this BAT lane and look for other opportunities to reduce delay and improve travel time reliability across the system.
Portland Streetcar's revised schedules will enter service on Sunday, September 1, 2019. The new schedules will be similar to current service but regular riders should check to make sure they can catch an expected streetcar at the correct time.
The revised schedules will provide a service improvement through restoring frequent service on the A and B Loops and starting frequent service earlier in the morning.
Check here for online and printable PDF schedules. For real-time arrival information, use our interactive map or download the NextBus app. To plan a trip in advance, use the trip planner at TriMet.org and select "Train Only."
The following day is Labor Day, on which we will operate a Saturday schedule.
In response to lost economic activity due to protests by right-wing demonstrators on August 17, Portland Streetcar is partnering with Travel Portland and many others to Support Downtown by making it easier than ever to discover Downtown Portland on Saturday, August 24.
Free streetcar rides--in addition to promotions from BikeTown, multiple e-scooter companies and more--will help Portlanders and visitors shop, eat and explore at local businesses. So take a free ride and let us help you get where you're going!
On August 12, Portland Streetcar riders will no longer be able to purchase tickets through the Portland Streetcar Ticket App. You can still pay on your phone with Hop, which also works for TriMet bus and Max light rail, as well as C-Tran in Vancouver.
Previously purchased tickets on the mobile app will still be valid through December 31, 2019. As of January 1, 2020, we will no longer accept tickets purchased in the mobile app as valid fare.
You can also exchange unused, unactivated tickets in the mobile app for a free Hop card with equivalent value by stopping by the Portland Streetcar customer service office at 1350 NW Lovejoy, Suite 280 (enter through Nossa Familia Coffee - stairs/elevator to the left inside the door).
TriMet will be suspending Max light rail service between the Interstate/Rose Quarter and Lloyd Center/NE 11th Avenue stations between August 4 and 17 for a planned track maintenance project. The project will affect Red, Blue and Green Max lines. Shuttle buses will serve Max riders between those stops.
Portland Streetcar A and B Loops run through Lloyd and connect to the Central Eastside, South Waterfront, Pearl District and Downtown. See our interactive system map here to plan your route.
For more information on the maintenance project and alternate options, visit TriMet's website here.
The Portland Aerial Tram will be closed for maintenance between July 2-7. Shuttle buses will serve riders attempting to move between the South Waterfront and Marquam Hill on those dates.