Stop-sign switch coming at NW Bend intersection

Portland Avenue will become through street at 11th

BEND, Ore. - The city of Bend will be making a major change to a northwest Bend intersection in the next couple of weeks, changing the stop-sign placement from Portland Avenue to less-traveled 11th Street, officials said Friday.

City spokeswoman Anne Aurand said the change will be made by Sept. 28, to improve safety and traffic flow.

North-south traffic on 11th Street will be required to stop, she said, while Portland Avenue motorists will now be able to continue through the intersection without stopping.

"The city evaluated the intersection in response to citizen service requests," Aurand said in a weekly road and traffic update.

"The stop signs were switched because Portland Avenue is what's known as a 'major collector,' which means it has higher traffic volumes," she said. "It also includes a bicycle lane."

The change comes just over a year after Deschutes County District Attorney John Hummel was seriously injured in a collision with an SUV that police said failed to stop at the Portland Avenue stop sign.

Some area residents who said many motorists had run the Portland Avenue stop signs had called for the intersection to become a four-way stop. But Aurand said 11th Street traffic volumes were not high enough to meet industry standards for either a two-way or all-way stop.

She noted the city also has trimmed vegetation at the intersection, to enhance drivers' visibility.

The city plans to install signs to give drivers more notice of the stop sign change for about a month, Aurand said.

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