Hosford-Abernethy Neighborhood Development (HAND) is in the beginning stages of creating a survey on perceived risk and safety for people who use Ladd Circle. The survey is part of the neighborhood association’s ongoing efforts to improve the safety of pedestrians and bicyclists.

HAND vice president Linda Nettekoven says HAND’s board suggested the idea of a survey during its July 19 meeting. The hope is to have the survey ready by September after school starts.

The survey’s questions and topics are not finalized. But Nettekoven says the survey will ask whether respondents are residents living near Ladd Circle or simply use it for transportation purposes. Their typical mode of transportation—motor vehicle, bicycle, or by foot—will also be determined. The survey will also ask how safe respondents feel traveling through the circle and to what degree they pose a safety risk to others.

“We want to figure out two things: what people’s perception of risk is [and] how dangerous they think the intersection is, and therefore, what kinds of solutions come out of that,” Nettekoven says. “If most people don’t think it’s particularly dangerous, then maybe it stays the way it is.”

“It’s an attempt to engage the community in a more deep, thorough discussion about the safety issue in Ladd Circle,” says Mia Birk, a bicycling advocate and parent living in the area who is involved with the survey.

The main complaints that Birk reports regard a lack of respect for pedestrians from bicyclists not yielding to pedestrians at intersections. All the intersections in Ladd Circle have crosswalks.

The survey will also ask people what solutions and strategies should be pursued to increase safety. Those could run the gamut, Birk says, from making physical changes to signs and markings and adding speed bumps, to simply changing one’s behavior. “There's a whole suite of possible changes,” she says.

HAND is coordinating with local schools, the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT), the Bicycle Transportation Alliance (BTA) and the Willamette Pedestrian Coalition.

It is not yet clear what actions HAND will take once the survey is complete.