Montgomery Pop-Up Plaza

SW Montgomery will remain closed until June 15th

January 6th 2020 - June 15th 2020

SW Montgomery has been closed down to cars since September 2019. Since then, PSU has been working closely with the city to create an agreement that would close the street down for good. The new closure extension until June 15th is meant to buy PSU and the city some more time to finalize the agreement. There have been no major complaints or concerns about the closure and both parties have every intention to go through with approving a permanent closure before June 15th. 

Imagining the Future of Montgomery Street

Design Charrette October 11th

On October 11th, the Campus Planning Office, along with local landscape architecture firms, hosted a half day design charrette on the block of Montgomery Street between Broadway and 6th Avenue. The charrette was part of the Portland State of Mind Festival and aimed to engage and inform the public and the PSU community on the longer-term plans for the street as a car-free space. 
The block is part of the 2009 Montgomery Green Street Plan, a multi-block plan developed by PSU, the city of Portland, and other stakeholders, that incorporates stormwater management strategies and pedestrian spaces along Montgomery Street from SW 11th Avenues to Pettygrove Park. This block is one of the 3 blocks remaining open to vehicular traffic. 
Last Spring, PSU and PBOT worked together on a successful pilot vehicular closure and pop-up plaza at the street which included performances, art installations, interactive events, and informational tables from various campus and community organizations. This fall quarter, the street has been closed again to vehicles as Campus Planning explores options for a permanent closure with PBOT. 
During the charrette, the public was invited to participate in several activities including chalking on the street, voting on desirable features for the space, and working with landscape architects to sketch conceptual plans of the space. Major themes that came out of these activities included additional lighting, vendor and food truck space, addition of green space, public art, and increased seating options. The skybridge above the street also drew the public's attention and inspired ideas to integrate it into the street realm through added features such as greenery and lighting. 
Simultaneously, a group of landscape architects from Ground Workshop, Mayer/Reed, Walker Macy, and Studio collaborated on design ideas for the space. Initial design proposals focused on transforming the space into a flexible multi-use plaza and redesigning the space to emphasize use by pedestrians. Other key design ideas included enhanced lighting, additional green space and water features that could double as stormwater management. 

SW Montgomery will be car-free once again!

September 23rd 2019 - January 6th 2020

SW Montgomery is closing down to cars again and this time we hope for good. The month long Montgomery Pop-up Plaza Pilot back in May 2019 proved that the street holds up as a successful pedestrian campus space. As a result, PSU submitted another temporary street closure permit for an entire Fall term closure, from September 23rd 2019 to January 6th 2020. 
PSU will continue to talk with the city about a permanent closure agreement that we hope will come to fruition before the Fall term temporary closure permit expires so that the street never has to re-open to cars.

Closure Purpose

A car-free SW Montgomery will enhance the campus and community environment with: 

  • better pedestrian connectivity between PSU’s campus and other amenities 
  • safer navigation through campus and downtown on foot and by bike
  • more car-free space for people to assemble, interact, and build community

All of which improve the on-campus pedestrian experience, allow for place-making that strengthens campus identity in downtown Portland and, promote walking and biking as modes of transportation over vehicular use.

Have you enjoyed the car-free Montgomery? Take our survey!


Tell us what you think!


Montgomery Pop-Up Plaza May 2019 

SW Montgomery Street between 6th and Broadway was closed for the month of May 2019 and transformed into an outdoor campus public space for everyone to enjoy. The goal of  the pop-up plaza was to explore the street’s potential as active campus and community space to create a successful precedent that will support the efforts to permanently close the street, and to gather feedback from the PSU community during and after the closure to evaluate the feasibility of and desire for a permanent street closure.