A jurisdictional transfer assessment was identified in the Regional Transportation Plan as a necessary step to help our region meet its equity, safety and multimodal goals. In greater Portland, ownership patterns of streets, roads and highways reflect historical patterns but do not necessarily reflect current transportation, land use and development needs.
Several arterials in greater Portland were originally constructed by the State of Oregon as a rural or farm-to-market roadway. Some roadways transitioned into highways that connected one town to another with few businesses or homes in between. But as city limits expanded, many of these roads became surrounded by an increasingly busy urban environment. These changes to roadways over time may warrant a transfer of ownership to better meet current and future uses and demands for neighborhoods, commutes and moving goods.
Why it matters
This project identified which state-owned routes in greater Portland should be considered and evaluated for jurisdictional transfer. The Regional Framework for Highway Jurisdictional Transfer Study provides an assessment of gaps and deficiencies on these routes, transfer cost methodology, identification of barriers and opportunities for transfer from state ownership to local ownership, and technical rankings of the transfer candidate routes.
The Metro Council accepted the findings of the report on December 17, 2020. This work will be carried forward into the update to the Regional Transfortation Plan that begins in Fall 2021. The decision framework in the report will serve as a tool for state, regional, and local jurisdictional leaders to identify roadways that could be good candidates for transfer and facilitate that process. It will be up to local jurisdictions and ODOT to then take action to make these further transfers happen.