Students at Hood River Middle School in Hood River, Oregon, will get some hands-on transportation experience next spring as they participate in the redesign of bike and pedestrian infrastructure around their school. Members of the (tentatively named) "Better Blocks Club," a new after-school extracurricular club, will get the chance to observe infrastructure, go on field trips by bike, learn urban planning best practices, and be involved in implementing a pilot safety project.

They'll be helping to plan and install new pop-up pedestrian and bike facilities at the intersection of May Street and 17th/18th Streets, a dogleg intersection adjacent to their school. The intersection design, which will include a protected intersection near the school and pop-up mobility lanes on the approaching streets, was created by PSU civil engineering students as part of the Better Block PSU program.

After the 6-month pilot demonstration is complete, the project will undergo community feedback and design modifications before infrastructure is permanently installed by the City of Hood River.

Left: Intersection of 17th/May St (Google Street View, 2022). Right: Map of the project location.

HOW DID THIS PROJECT COME ABOUT?

The project is led by Megan Ramey, Hood River County School District's Safe Routes to School...

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A group of nine transportation students traveled to Denmark and Sweden this past summer, to meet with planners and engineers and get a feel for on-the-ground transportation in Copenhagen and Stockholm. They explored the area by rail, foot, bike and boat, in between presentations and tours led by professionals. 

Portland State University's Transportation Research and Education Center (TREC)'s associate director, Hau Hagedorn, and sustainable transportation program manager, John MacArthur, led the Initiative for Bicycle and Pedestrian Innovation (IBPI) Study Abroad program. See photos from the trip.

In past years they've traveled to the Netherlands to experience the Dutch approach to cycling infrastructure and multimodal travel. This year, they decided to expand the mission. Copenhagen, like Amserdam, is sometimes referred to as the cycling capital of the world. Stockholm, along with some...

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The Transportation Undergraduate Research Fellowship (TURF) program at Portland State University has hosted twenty-four fellows since 2017, and recently wrapped up its summer 2022 session. This year, six undergraduate researchers worked on projects aimed at improving the safety and efficiency of multimodal transportation systems. The research goals ranged from surveying pedestrian count programs and safety performance functions across the country, to reviewing case studies of tactical curb extensions and collecting pedestrian data at intersections. 

Hosted by PSU’s Transportation Research and Education Center (TREC), the TURF fellows also experience a variety of workshops with PSU faculty and staff on research, communication and data science skills. They attended the 2022 Forth Mobility Roadmap Conference in June, and participated in networking events with the Portland chapters of YPT and WTS. Here is some of what the students had to say about the experience:

"I enjoyed all of the experiences surrounding my time here at TREC, but I loved the workshops. I especially enjoyed Dr. Golub's workshop...

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In 2019 Olivia Nell wasn't sure what she wanted to study in college. A junior in high school, she discovered a free transportation summer camp at Portland State University (PSU) for high schoolers. After seeing the behind-the-scenes workings of transportation in Portland, Oregon and meeting local professionals, she knew she wanted to pursue: engineering.

"I really enjoyed my time at the camp, and it helped me narrow down my educational interests. I am now in my third year of college at Oregon State University studying mechanical engineering, hoping to focus on renewable energy," Olivia said.

This summer she returned to the camp as a counselor to mentor the next cohort of Oregon high school students. She is one of five past students to do so.

"Three of our counselors this year were past camp students. I think that in itself speaks to the importance of this camp in drawing people to the transportation profession," said Hau Hagedorn, associate director of the Transportation Research Education Center (TREC) at PSU.

Olivia decided to return because she appreciates how the camp positively impacts students: "I wanted to be a part of a team that allows for students to explore various career...

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