ITE Journal - May 2021 - 36

to organize these employees. While boundaries are not so specific
as to eliminate flexibility, this analysis did identify two districts
to further investigate to determine if a change in boundary would
help improve the equity of visits within those areas. Overall, staff
appear to be responding directly to the requests that are made
in their areas, so strategies to cultivate public requests across all
equity scores will likely result in an equivalent change in visits.

Inspection Scores
One reason that there may be more public requests in one area
versus another, resulting in more visits, could be the condition
of the traffic signal infrastructure. We hypothesized that more
requests would be made in areas with older infrastructure and
corresponding lower inspection scores.
Inspections involve an evaluation of the traffic signal cabinets,
controllers, poles, signal displays, and span wire/mast arms. Each
category is rated on a scale from zero (0) to 20, and then the scores
are summed for a total inspection score between zero (0) and 100.
Assigning inspection scores has become routine over the past few
years, and 86 percent of traffic signals were assigned an inspection
score between July 2018 and May 2020.
Figure 4 illustrates the geographic distribution of inspection
scores with a box-and-whisker plot that shows the 5th percentile,
first quartile, median, third quartile, and 95th percentile
inspection scores for each equity score. Summarizing the
inspection scores in this way allows a comparison of infrastructure condition between equity scores as well as the spread of
inspection scores.
While the median inspection scores are relatively similar for
most of the equity scores (in the high 70s or low 80s), the spread
of inspection scores is greater for areas with higher equity scores.
In particular, the lowest inspection scores are in areas with higher
equity scores. Upon further investigation, most of this impact is a
result of the downtown traffic signals, which generally have lower
inspection scores than other areas.
We know that inspection scores are likely tied to infrastructure
age. For example, downtown has some of the lowest inspection
scores, but it also has some of the oldest equipment. While
downtown has some corridors that were updated in the 2000s,
many of the traffic signals have equipment that is more than
30 years old. Figure 5 illustrates the date of the last remodel at
each traffic signal with a box-and-whisker plot that shows the
5th percentile, first quartile, median, third quartile, and 95th
percentile inspection scores. While this " remodel date " means
different things at specific locations, it has led us to consider this
label more carefully to improve our asset management practices.
This confirms that traffic signals that have been remodeled more
recently have higher median inspection scores and a smaller spread
of inspection scores.
36

May 2021

i te j o urnal

While the inspection scores align with our expectations related
to infrastructure age, they support the previous conclusion that
there is a need for more outreach in areas with higher equity scores.
We would expect there to be more requests in the areas with lower
inspection scores, so infrastructure condition does not explain the
lower number of requests in the areas with higher equity scores.

Conclusions
This evaluation of traffic signal requests and visits was conducted as
a starting point to help PBOT SSL move towards a more just transportation system that considers everyone living in and traveling
through our city.
We wanted to identify if and where we need to prioritize:
ƒ	 Community outreach efforts, which could range from
coordinating with the Transportation Justice Committee to
work with local leaders to posting our contact information
more prominently on traffic signal cabinets and streetlights;
ƒ	 Regular evaluations to help determine issues before they are
reported by the public;
ƒ	 Funding for equipment that is in poor condition and
technology that can help us track issues proactively and
remotely;
ƒ	 Changes to district boundaries to better distribute staff
resources and address requests; and
ƒ	 " Hot spots " that receive a high number of requests and visits.
Our conclusions from this evaluation include:
ƒ	 Public outreach and/or proactive maintenance (i.e., through
automated technology), is needed in areas with higher equity
scores, which generally have fewer public requests than the
percentage of traffic signals. We need to ensure the issues
we are addressing are those that are most important to the
people living in those communities.
ƒ	 Visits are directly tied to requests, so while traffic signals
throughout the city are receiving attention, strategies to
cultivate public requests will result in visits that address
community concerns.
ƒ	 Some districts should be further investigated to determine
if a change in district boundary would help balance visits to
those areas. itej

References
1.	 Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT). 2019. Moving to Our Future:
PBOT's Strategic Plan 2019-2022. https://www.portlandoregon.gov/
transportation/article/741160 (Accessed March 31, 2021).
2.	 Koonce, P. " Inclusion of Equity in an LED Citywide Street Lighting
Replacement Program. " ITE Journal, Vol. 87, No. 8 (August 2017): 24-28.
3.	 Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT). 2019. Equity Matrix.
https://www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/74236 (Accessed
March 31, 2021).


https://www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/article/741160 https://www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/article/741160 https://www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/74236

ITE Journal - May 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of ITE Journal - May 2021

ITE Journal - May 2021 - 1
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 2
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 3
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 4
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 5
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 6
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 7
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 8
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 9
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 10
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 11
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 12
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 13
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 14
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 15
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 16
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 17
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 18
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 19
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 20
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 21
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 22
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 23
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 24
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 25
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 26
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 27
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 28
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 29
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 30
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 31
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 32
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 33
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 34
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 35
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 36
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 37
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 38
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 39
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 40
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 41
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 42
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 43
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 44
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 45
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 46
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 47
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 48
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 49
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 50
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 51
ITE Journal - May 2021 - 52
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/ite-journal-june-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/ite-journal-may-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/ite-journal-april-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/ITE_Mar2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/ITE_Jan2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/ITE_Dec2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/ITE_Nov2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/ITE_Oct2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/ITE_Sept2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/ITE_Aug2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/ITE_July2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/ITE_June2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/ITE_May2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/ITE_April2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/ITE_March2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/ITE_February2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/ITE_January2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/ITE_December2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G110939_ITE_November2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G110110_ITE_October2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G110109_ITE_September2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G108559_ITE_August2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G108250_ITE_July2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G107225_ITE_June2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G104039_ITE_May2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G104038_ITE_April2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G104036_ITE_March2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G103582_ITE_February2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G102868_ITE_January2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G100155_ITE_December2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G100154_ITE_November2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G99495_ITE_October2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G98028_ITE_September2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G97366_ITE_August2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G96287_ITE_July2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G94315_ITE_June2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G93877_ITE_May2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G93065_ITE_Apr2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G91484_ITE_Mar2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G89434_ITE_Feb2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G86608_ITE_Jan2018
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com