1 May 2019
In 2015, Portland, Oregon opened North Americas’s longest car-free bridge The Tilikum Crossing, a bridge that allows travel for pedestrians, bikes and scooters as well as light rail, streetcars and buses!
It’s a superb transportation marvel, not only elegant but one of the most multi-modal places in the United States connecting logical routes not only now but in the future as Portland’s Southwest waterfront continues to go thru its development. It also connects to the equally exquisite aerial tram to Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) which in turn boasts the largest bicycle valet service in North America!
Being around the area on a few summer days it’s easy to see all this beauty and planned car-free options in action.
Here’s Streetfilms’ love letter to Tilkum which makes the case for other cities considering transportation options near bodies of water that there are many great reasons to do it the same way. There is virtually no noise. The footprint of the bridge is small since interconnecting off-ramps and large roads taking up valuable real estate is not needed. The comfort for those using active transit (bikes and walking) was carefully considered. And the fact that it can accommodate three different modes of transit: streetcars, light rail and three bus routes is a huge selling point.
And the final wonderful feature: the LED lights on the span change colors based upon the temperature and water level of the Willamette River! Believe me on a beautiful summer night you want to stay on it forever.