March 7, 2013

Portland eyes big changes in Libbytown

By Randy Billings
Staff Writer

(Continued from page 1)

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Staff photo by Derek Davis: Libbytown section of Portland, looking up Park Avenue. Photographed on Wednesday, March 3, 2013..

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Staff photo by Derek Davis: Libbytown section of Portland, looking up St. John Street. Photographed on Wednesday, March 3, 2013..

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Map: Libbytown in Portland, Maine

The parkway was built in 2005 to connect Congress Street to West Commercial Street. It is considered underutilized, but that is expected to change if the Thompson's Point project is developed.

The Forefront at Thompson's Point is designed to include an arena, a hotel and offices, which would add traffic in the area.

The advisory group also supported converting a one-way section of Park Avenue to two-way traffic, although further study of its impact on the Hood plant is needed, Bartlett said.

The consultants will meet with business owners from 8:15 to 9:15 a.m. on March 22 at Peloton Labs, at 795 Congress St.

Bartlett said the consultants are expected to do a detailed analysis of the options, including costs, and present their findings to the City Council's Transportation, Energy and Sustainability Committee as early as June.

Carl Eppich, the transportation planner for PACTS, said the final recommendations will also include new bike and pedestrian lanes and new bus stops.

Any changes to the I-295 ramps would need approval from the Federal Highway Administration and the Maine Department of Transportation.

"It's easy to look at these drawings on paper and think they're going to be a panacea and solve everyone's problems," he said. "We need to go through a process to vet them."

Randy Billings can be contacted at 791-6346 or at:
Twitter: @randybillings

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