Safety advocate to Novick: Where’s the Barbur study you requested?

Posted by on January 28th, 2015 at 9:18 am

Street fee press conference-1
Transportation Commissioner Steve Novick in 2014.
(Photo: J.Maus/BikePortland)

When is a traffic study not a traffic study?

“Let’s work together to make Barbur safer,” Portland Transportation Commissioner Steve Novick wrote in October 2013, promising that “the Portland Bureau of Transportation will commit the time and resources to work with ODOT and engage the surrounding communities to see the impacts of a possible road diet and find the right solution.”

Now, some of the advocates who helped persuade Novick to make that commitment are saying it’s still unfulfilled.


Company places 14 orange bikes in Beaverton as part of marketing ploy

Posted by on January 27th, 2015 at 4:26 pm

Orange bikes seem a strange
way to promote a gym.
(Photo: Orangetheory Fitness/FB)

A marketing campaign that has generated backlash in several other cities for its similarity to ghost bikes has been launched in Beaverton and Tigard.

In the past two days we’ve received several reader tips about mysterious, spray-painted orange bikes locked up around Beaverton. One person thought they were a public art project.

Today we asked our friends on Twitter if they’d heard anything and we heard back from Tom at Seattle Bike Blog. He said the bikes were the work of a marketing campaign by a company called Orangetheory Fitness and pointed us to an article about the bikes published by The Stranger back in April 2014.

A few clicks later and we confirmed that Orangetheory has indeed placed the same orange bikes throughout the Beaverton area to promote their new Tigard location.


Lawsuit stemming from crash during mountain bike race is withdrawn

Posted by on January 27th, 2015 at 1:56 pm

“With this decision, the future of mountain bike racing in state of Oregon has a somewhat brighter outlook.”
— Park Chambers, owner of Fat Tire Farm

A lawsuit many feared would have an ominous ripple-effect on mountain bike race promotion in the state of Oregon has been withdrawn.

As we shared earlier this month, Lisa Belair-Sullivan filed a lawsuit against a race promoter and sponsor after she crashed and injured herself on a log that had fallen across a trail. Belair-Sullivan was warming up for the Dog River Super D mountain bike race in May. Her lawsuit contended that event promoter Petr Kakes of Hurricane Racing and Park Chambers of Fat Tire Farm (a shop who was the title sponsor of the event) created a safety hazard that she was unable to avoid.

On January 9th, we confirmed with Belair-Sullivan that she withdrew the case. While she has yet to make an official public statement, Park Chambers issued one on January 23rd. We’ve pasted the statement below in its entirety:


Get ready for Southwest Portland Week!

Posted by on January 27th, 2015 at 12:34 pm

Ride Along with the Stedman Family-8
Rolling through Hillsdale.
(Photo by J. Maus/BikePortland)

The second week of February (9-13) will be Southwest Portland Week here on BikePortland.

That entire week, News Editor Michael Andersen and I will be stationed in a secret bunker (probably a pub or coffee shop in Multnomah Village) where we’ll focus our editorial output on the issues, projects, businesses, and people of southwest Portland.

If you recall our East Portland Week last summer, you’ll have some idea of what to expect. The basic idea with these focused coverage events is to open our eyes to places that we don’t cover — or physically inhabit — as often as we’d like to. Sure, we have sources all over the region and we can cover places we never visit; but it’s just the not the same as being there.


Thoughts on Hart Noecker and our community

Posted by on January 27th, 2015 at 10:52 am

In case you have not heard by now, Hart Noecker, a man who was well-known in local bike activism circles and who we used several times as a source for stories over the years, has been the subject of serious allegations regarding his actions and behaviors in numerous personal and group relationships.

I care deeply about our community and the people impacted by Noecker’s actions and I take this situation very seriously. Also, since I’m the one who decided to feature him on this website on several occasions, I want to share my thoughts and offer some clarifications.


One rider’s Twitter crusade shows the ‘City that works’ what doesn’t

Posted by on January 27th, 2015 at 10:23 am

Vanlue on the job.
(Photo: Asta Chastain)

Maybe the All-Powerful Bicycle Lobby had something to do with it, but the day Will Vanlue decided to start delivering for SoupCycle was an especially good day for the rest of Portland.

As a courier for the Portland-based soup delivery service, Vanlue — a former BikePortland contributor and Bicycle Transportation Alliance communications manager, a talented photographer and one of the most courteous and mindfully upbeat biking advocates in town — spends many of his daytime hours traveling the city’s streets in an upright city bike with a trailer full of fresh soup.

Also with him: a smartphone camera he’s been using for months to share street design shortcomings on Twitter.


Comment of the week: A brief intro to bike fitting

Posted by on January 26th, 2015 at 4:02 pm

Getting fit with Seth Hosmer-4
Getting fit.
(Photo: J.Maus/BikePortland)

Jonathan’s very personal post last week about recovering from his recent knee injury with the help of a local chiropractor prompted some useful and impressively respectful discussion about the lines between physical therapy, chiropractic care, training and health care in general.

But as a relatively casual rider who’s starting to feel the first persistent aches of my 30s, I was especially interested by a comment from a reader named David, who offered a simple, compelling introduction to the practice of bike fitting.


Free to good home: a bicycle-powered star destroyer

Posted by on January 26th, 2015 at 3:20 pm

star destroyer
Shield generators included.
(Photos via Craigslist)

This is your chance to steer one of the flagships of Pedalpalooza‘s annual Star Wars vs. Star Trek ride.

Though we won’t know until December whether Imperial-class star destroyers survived the death of the Emperor, this particular model is in good shape but looking for a new home in advance of this summer’s festival of bike fun in Portland, according to a recent Craigslist “free stuff” post.


Oregon Senate bill would mandate bicycle licenses and registration – UPDATED

Posted by on January 26th, 2015 at 1:32 pm

“Imposes license fee in amount sufficient to pay administrative costs, as determined by Department of Transportation. Creates offense of failure to register bicycle. Punishes by maximum fine of $250.”
— From summary of Senate Bill 177

(UPDATE, 9:05 am 1/27: Scroll down for a comment from the Salem, Oregon resident who requested this bill.)

Here we go again…

An Oregon legislator has introduced a bill that would mandate licenses for everyone over 18 years of age who rides a bicycle and would require them to pay a $10 fee to register their bikes. The bill would also prohibit the use of “state highway fund” dollars on “bicycle” projects and repeal ORS 366.154 (a.k.a. the “bike bill”).

Senate Bill 177 has been introduced by Senator Brian Boquist (R-12) “at the request of” a constituent. That “at the request of” part is important because it appears the bill is what’s known as a “constituent bill”. In other words, this isn’t a bill the senator himself is pushing for — he has merely accepted it and moved it along into a committee to appease a vocal constituent. In this case, the constituent is a man named Ted Campbell.


The Ride: Mountain biking on the Wilson River Trail

Posted by on January 26th, 2015 at 12:17 pm

Wilson River Trail MTB ride-12
(Photos by J. Maus/BikePortland)

Just off Highway 6 in the Tillamook State Forest about 45 miles west of Portland lies some of the region’s best singletrack. And I’m still wondering why it took me 11 years to finally discover it.


Poorly installed bike racks in renovated Bancorp Tower plaza

Posted by on January 26th, 2015 at 11:15 am

bancorp tower parking
Can you spot the errors with this installation?
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

If we want to become a virtuoso cycling city, we must first master the fundamentals.

It’s one thing when poorly installed bicycle parking happens in front of a convenience store, but it’s a much bigger deal when it’s done as part of a multi-million dollar project for the 2nd tallest building in Portland and the largest office building (in terms of volume) in the entire state of Oregon.


The Monday Roundup: Illegal walking, ambulance bike racks and more

Posted by on January 26th, 2015 at 9:16 am

Going-home time
Somebody call the cops.
(Photo: browneyes.)

This week’s Monday Roundup is brought to you by the Ride the Heart of the Valley Bike Ride. Set for April 26th, this ride is a benefit for the Oregon State University College of Veterinary Medicine and the Boys and Girls Club of Corvallis.


Here are the bike-related stories from around the world that caught our eyes this week:

Illegal walking: Child protective services threatened to take two Maryland children away from their parents after the parents let their kids (aged 10 and 6) walk home one mile from the park together.

Ambulance bike racks: A hospital in Fort Collins now equips its ambulances with racks to avoid leaving patients’ bikes at the scene.

Car-detecting radar: Garmin is marketing an alert device for bike users.


The Friday Profile: David Griffiths, Portland’s tattooed philosopher of ‘ciclovismo’

Posted by on January 23rd, 2015 at 5:22 pm

David Griffiths has developed a concise and compelling way of talking and thinking about bicycles as a metaphor for life.
(Photos: M.Andersen/BikePortland)

For years, as deeply as he loved language, David Griffiths thought social media wasn’t for him.


City, district and parent volunteers team up to improve north Portland street

Posted by on January 23rd, 2015 at 11:40 am

Delaware Avenue near Chief Joseph/Ockley Green School in Arbor Lodge is getting a facelift.
(Graphics by Fat Pencil Studio)

There’s probably no better place for a section of carfree street than between an elementary school and a park. That’s the situation on N Delaware Avenue between Bryant and Saratoga in the Arbor Lodge neighborhood.


Now one of few large U.S. cities without bike sharing, Portland sets a new date

Posted by on January 23rd, 2015 at 10:03 am

Downtown Riverside, CA
Downtown Riverside, Calif., the center of the
country’s 13th largest metro area and a city planning
to launch a bike sharing system in 2015.
(Photo: Daniel Orth)

By the end of 2015, it’s looking like 21 of the largest 25 U.S. metro areas are likely to have public bike share systems.

The four that won’t: Los Angeles, Detroit, St. Louis and Portland.

Los Angeles, by far the country’s largest holdout, announced this month that it’s on track to launch a system in 2016. Atlanta, Baltimore and Riverside, Calif., have plans to launch in 2015 but haven’t announced more specific dates.

Meanwhile, four other cities started service late last year or will in the next few months: Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, San Diego and Seattle.


Jobs of the Week: Bike Gallery, Community Cycling Center, WashCo BTC

Posted by on January 23rd, 2015 at 8:05 am

We’ve had three great job opportunities listed this week. Check them out via the links below…


Lake Oswego city council revives concept of bike path on old trolleyway

Posted by on January 22nd, 2015 at 3:48 pm

New attention, old idea.

Three years after Lake Oswego pulled out of a plan to upgrade its little-used riverside trolley line into a high-speed streetcar, the idea of turning the tracks into a biking-walking path is back in discussion.

This time, the idea is being driven by recently reelected Lake Oswego City Council member Jeff Gudman, who embraced the idea after hearing about it repeatedly from Lake Oswego residents during his campaigns.

“As I was doing my door to door, any number of people would say to me that they really like the idea,” Gudman said in an interview Thursday. “Some wanted streetcar, bike and ped. Others wanted just bike and ped.”

As the Oregonian’s editorial board reported Thursday, this week Gudman won his colleagues’ approval for a study of the legal issues surrounding a riverside trail.


State says it has no plans to restripe street where one person has died per year

Posted by on January 22nd, 2015 at 12:55 pm

barbur curve looking north
Typical midday traffic approaching a curve in Barbur Boulevard from the south.
(Image: Google Street View.)

During a construction project last summer, the Oregon Department of Transportation seems to have discovered that there’s a way to cut extreme speeding on a curving two-mile stretch of Southwest Barbur Boulevard where six people have died in the last five years.

Was it closing the passing lanes? Lowering the posted speed limit from 45 to 35 mph? Upping traffic enforcement and penalties? Simply marking it as a construction zone?

The agency did all of those things at once, so it isn’t sure which one worked, and it currently has no plans to find out.

Meanwhile, the state-owned street has returned to normal indefinitely.


Weekend Event Guide: Sprints, Swan Island, trail work and more

Posted by on January 22nd, 2015 at 10:59 am

Bike Fashion Show_ride and afterparty-73
Explore the many secret wonders of Swan Island
at the North Portland Greenway Excursion ride on Saturday.
(Photo by J. Maus/BikePortland)

Welcome to your menu of weekend rides and events, lovingly brought to you by our friends at Hopworks Urban Brewery.

This weather has been too nice. Too nice to work, too nice to stay indoors. Thankfully the weekend is coming! And guess what? The temps are only getting warmer and I hear it might even reach 60-degrees on Sunday.

I hope you have something fun planned. If not, we’ve got a bunch of great suggestions for you.

Get out there and ride. After staring at the sun and blue sky all week, you deserve some quality time in the saddle.


Bike paths, greenway on Milwaukie city council agenda tonight

Posted by on January 22nd, 2015 at 10:26 am

Milwaukie City Council will take up the proposed
new path on 17th Ave tonight.

After we posted a story yesterday about a Milwaukie real estate owner who plans to demolish his retail building on Main Street and build a parking lot, we heard from a few readers who worried their hometown was getting a bad rap.

Truth is, there is a lot of positive momentum for bicycling and livable streets in Milwaukie. Reader Matt Menely has been advocating for bikes in Milwaukie for many years. He got in touch to tell us about tonight’s city council meeting — which has an agenda that’s chock-full of bike-related projects.


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