Better Broadway Demonstration Project

Join us to celebrate a Better NE Broadway! For one week, from May 9th-15th, NE Broadway will be transformed into a business and pedestrian friendly street. The Broadway-Weidler Alliance, a group of neighborhood associations and business organizations focused on making NE Broadway a more inviting place for people to shop and gather, has partnered with the non-profit Better Block PDX to produce this week long demonstration project. Better Block PDX has worked with PSU transportation planning and engineering students, the Portland Bureau of Transportation, businesses, and neighborhood groups along NE Broadway to activate the street and create an inclusive new urban space. Better Block PDX has successfully transformed other streets in Portland into places for people, such as the SW 3rd Ave and a Better Naito along with waterfront during the Rose Festival.

One lane along the north side will be opened up to people from May 9th ‐ 15th (see graphics below). There will be outdoor seating, music, activities, art, and more. It will be like a street fair but for an entire week. This project came about after asking “How can NE Broadway become a thriving retail destination?” Neighbors and businesses then gathered together to put on this exciting project to show that we can turn a mean street into a main street where families can walk to meet their daily needs, share a meal, and support their local businesses. 

The project goal of the Better Broadway project is to demonstrate possibilities for a better people- focused business environment by changing the street configuration, and that changing the street won’t cause traffic jams. In New York City, returning part of the street to people in the form of street seats, plazas, and bike lanes resulted in significant improvement of adjacent businesses, with increased retail sales of as much as 172% after completion of similar street improvements*.

We encourage everyone to stop by during this demonstration project to experience the new Main Street, to shop, to dine, to explore. Better Block projects are entirely volunteer run. Contact BetterBlockPDX@gmail.com if you want to get involved.

* Measuring the Street Report NYC DOT, 2012. http://www.nyc.gov/html/dot/downloads/pdf/2012-10-measuring-the-street.pdf