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‘Spirit of Portland’ awards include PBOT staffer, CCC CEO, and Better Block

Posted by on December 7th, 2016 at 1:15 pm

2016 winners include PBOT's Janis McDonald (lef), Community Cycling Center CEO Mychal Tetteh (right) and Better Block PDX.(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland and Better Block)

2016 winners include PBOT’s Janis McDonald (left), Community Cycling Center CEO Mychal Tetteh (right) and Better Block PDX.
(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland and Better Block)

The 32nd annual Spirit of Portland Awards have been announced and the 2016 winners include three names you’re probably very familiar with.

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- Huntco is the official sponsor of BikePortland's bike parking coverage.-
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UPS now using pedal-powered trike to deliver freight in Portland

Posted by on December 7th, 2016 at 10:33 am

The UPS e-bike in action.(Photos: Mark Gamba for Truck Trike)

The UPS e-bike in action.
(Photos by Mark Gamba for Truck Trike)

Global package delivery juggernaut UPS has chosen Portland to debut its first electric-assist trike in the U.S.

In a statement released today, UPS said, “The deployment of the eBike is part of UPS’s ongoing commitment to reduce carbon emissions as city populations and e-commerce grow, and traffic, noise and air quality challenges continue to rise.”

Using trikes and other small, pedal-powered vehicles to deliver cargo in dense urban areas is relatively common in Europe. The European Cyclists’ Federation (an EU-funded non-profit) says 25 percent of all goods could potentially be delivered bicycles. That number rises to 50 percent when just considering lightweight cargo.

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City will update NW 16th Ave with buffered bike lane

Posted by on December 7th, 2016 at 8:19 am

The new bike lane will fill a gap in the network and help people connect to the new carfree bridge coming to NW Flanders. (Image: PBOT)

The new bike lane will fill a gap in the network and help people connect to the new carfree bridge coming to NW Flanders.
(Image: PBOT)

The City of Portland is reconfiguring the lanes of Northwest 16 Avenue between Johnson and Glisan. That three-block stretch of road in one of the most dense areas of the state currently lacks dedicated bicycle access.

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PBOT moves forward with carfree ‘Sullivan’s Crossing’ bridge over I-84

Posted by on December 6th, 2016 at 1:58 pm

Renderings of the new bridge. (Map: KPFF; renderings by Fat Pencil Studio)

The new bridge would create a long-awaiting north-south connection between the central eastside and the Lloyd District.
(Map by KPFF, renderings by Fat Pencil Studio)

For years people have dreamed of a low-stress and convenient bikeway between inner southeast Portland and the Lloyd District. Now it’s becoming a reality.

The Portland Bureau of Transportation is moving forward with plans to build a new carfree bridge over Interstate 84 that would connect 7th Avenue between NE Lloyd Boulevard on the north end and NE Flanders on the south end.

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Despite safety rhetoric, ODOT looks into raising highway truck speeds

Posted by on December 5th, 2016 at 3:55 pm

"Higher Speed Limit: No More Need to Speed" says an ODOT sign following speed limit increase in March 2016.(Photo: ODOT)

“Higher Speed Limit: No More Need to Speed” says an ODOT sign following speed limit increase in March 2016.
(Photo: ODOT)

The faster a vehicle travels, the more likely it is to hurt its operator or other road users. Advocates know this, first responders know this, traffic engineers know this, safety experts knows this. It’s a simple concept that fuels a lot of policy and advocacy — yet some politicians are still enthralled with the idea that the benefits of going faster outweigh the human costs.

After we got our first clue about two weeks ago, we’ve now confirmed that the Oregon Department of Transportation has commenced an engineering report on raising truck speeds on interstate highways. The move comes after an unnamed lawmaker said they plan to introduce legislation in the 2017 session to raise the speed limit on I-5 and two other major highways.

Let’s back up a bit…

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Portlander gets global attention for bringing pedal-power to Standing Rock

Posted by on December 5th, 2016 at 12:46 pm

 Cobb is name-dropped in a video published by CNN from Standing Rock that has over a million views.(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

Cobb is name-dropped in a video published by CNN from Standing Rock that has over a million views.
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

Portlander Mike Cobb brought valuable cargo with him on his journey to Standing Rock in support of people fighting against the Dakota Access Pipeline. It wasn’t food or jackets or blankets — it was the ability to produce electricity with a bicycle and a bit of pedal power.

Cobb is well-known in Portland for his bike messengering and extreme biking skills (he’s represented us at the World Cycle Messenger Championships and I ran into him on the Oregon Outback last year), his passion for the potential of cargo bikes during disasters (one of the main organizers of the annual Disaster Relief Trials), and his entrepreneurial endeavors in the bike industry (he’s co-owner of Framebuilder Supply).

Cobb has a passion for expanding the potential of what a bicycle can do. Given that, Cobb’s offering at Standing Rock comes as no surprise — but that doesn’t make it any less awesome. And what better way to promote the idea that bicycles can save the world than by getting major exposure on one of the world’s largest media outlets.

A CNN correspondent noticed Cobb’s set-up and published a video report about it thaty already has well over one million views:

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Subscriber Post: Driving as a right versus biking as a privilege

Posted by on December 5th, 2016 at 12:05 pm

Excerpt from Sellwood Middle School newsletter, 11-30-2016

Excerpt from Sellwood Middle School newsletter, 11-30-2016

This post was written by Carrie, a BikePortland subscriber. As a community member who supports our work, Carrie (and 306 other individuals and businesses) can create and submit posts whenever she wants. We publish most submissions in our Subscriber Posts section and will elevate the post here to the Front Page when warranted. This is just one perk of subscription! Learn more and sign up here.

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about Vision Zero, the enforcement angle, and the difference in the way we treat traffic scofflaws.

I agree with the data that show that speeding and other ‘minor’ infractions are the leading causes of injuries and deaths to road users. And I am not happy that enforcement of existing laws (rules) regarding speed limits, general traffic control devices (stop signs and turn prohibitions and crosswalks at every intersection) and existing infrastructure to keep all users safe is not a high priority.

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Photos from Day 2 of SSCXWCXPDX, a.k.a. ‘Burning Man on bikes’

Posted by on December 5th, 2016 at 11:38 am

A shark ramp (to jump the shark, get it?) was one of the many creative obstacles on the course.(Photos by Rob Kerr)

A shark ramp (to jump the shark, get it?) was one of the many creative obstacles on the course.
(Photos by Rob Kerr)

The officially unofficial Singlespeed Cyclocross World Championships (SSCXWCXPDX) are now nothing more than a memory — or a hangover if you were lucky enoughy to be out there.

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The Monday Roundup: Highway propaganda, Shaq on a bike, London on the upswing, and more

Posted by on December 5th, 2016 at 11:00 am

Cc: Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler.

Cc: Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler.

This week’s Monday Roundup is brought to you by Western Bikeworks who reminds you to check out their big warehouse sale coming December 9-11th at their Tigard location.

Lots of fun stories to share this week so let’s get right to it.

Here are the best stories we came across last week…

The Portland “megaregion”: A mapping project highlighted by National Geographic holds important clues about geography and mobility. Can someone tell me why we don’t have high-speed trains along I-5 corridor yet?

Deal with the devil: The head of the once-influential National Motorists Association appears reasonable in this Q & A professing support of a gas tax increase — them he says he wants to raise speed limits and get rid of speed cameras.

More from the auto lobby: DC Transportation Engineer Bill Schultheiss tracked down this influential 2006 report (PDF) from the American Highway Users Alliance that was used to lobby politicians for more highway capacity on the premise it would be necessary for successful evacuations in emergencies. Right… because private auto use is the most efficient way to move large numbers of people. Got it.

Traffic on purpose in NYC: Looks like the NY Post has joined in the national trend of publishing fake news with a story claiming that traffic in Manhattan is nothing more than a conspiracy by anti-car lobbyists to force people onto bikes and transit.

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SSCXWCPDX Day One: The crazy qualifiers – Photos by Rob Kerr

Posted by on December 4th, 2016 at 8:41 am

Qualifying day at Singlespeed Cyclocross World Championships out at Kruger's Farm on Sauvie Island.(Photos by Rob Kerr)

One of the qualifying events was a holeshot competition: All the riders lined up in a mass start and the first person to run over an orange cone would advance.
(Photos by Rob Kerr)

The Singlespeed Cyclocross World Championships (SSCXWC) made a triumphant return to Portland yesterday. Hundreds of racers descended on Kruger’s Farm at Sauvie Island for what looked like an epic day of qualifying heats. Race organizers outdid themselves with creative competitions, fun courses, and lots of surprises — including the presence of cyclocross legend Sven Nys, an Olympic mountain biker and multiple World Champion.

After everyone snapped selfies with Sven, they got down to the business (if you can call it that) of competing for a coveted spot in today’s main events. (Organizers announced yesterday that all the women who registered would automatically qualify.)

Here are a few images of the action from photographer Rob Kerr.

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With passage of action plan, Portland now has roadmap to zero traffic deaths

Posted by on December 2nd, 2016 at 11:31 am

PBOT Director Leah Treat presenting the action plan at City Council yesterday.

PBOT Director Leah Treat presenting the action plan at City Council yesterday.

21 of the 32 actions outlined in the Portland Bureau of Transportation’s Vision Zero Action Plan should be completed within two years and all of them should be done by 2021.

Those are the marching orders given to PBOT from City Council after four commissioners (Mayor Charlie Hales was in Mexico at a climate change conference) voted unanimously yesterday to pass the plan (PDF), a 35-page document developed over six months of task force meetings, data-crunching, and public outreach.

The vote comes six months after City Council passed the Vision Zero resolution that says, “No loss of life is acceptable on our city streets.”

The plan of actions to reach a goal of zero fatalities by 2025 (just nine years from now) are broken down into five categories: street design, impairment, speed, dangerous behaviors, and engagement and accountability. They include things like: breaking ground on new capital projects on high crash corridors, increasing police training, gaining local authority to set speed limits, expanding the red light safety camera program, and more.

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Jobs of the Week: Community Cycling Center, Velotech, Black Magic Paint, City of Portland

Posted by on December 2nd, 2016 at 9:33 am

Looking for a new job opportunity? We’ve got four great possibilities recently published on our job listings.

Learn more about each one via the links below…

–> Volunteer and Event Manager – Community Cycling Center

–> Customer Experience Specialist – Velotech

–> Off-Road Cycling Plan Intern (Paid) – Portland Bureau of Planning & Sustainability

–> Professional Painter – Black Magic Paint

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Weekly Video Roundup: Seattle visit, how carbon wheels are made, midpriced bike torture

Posted by on December 2nd, 2016 at 8:57 am

Welcome to the weekly video roundup! Last week was busy, with a train trip to Seattle for a no-friends no-family Thanksgiving. So I’m back to playing catchup – there are about 60 videos in the queue for next week already. So this week’s entries are on the short side, but they are still great!

The video above is from ‘Bike Kill NYC’, which is … I can’t summarize it any better than Gothamist: “a few hundred bike punks riding mutant welded art-cycles and throwing weird shit at each other in an endless counter-clockwise beer gyre while onlookers partied to the searing riffs of live metal bands”.

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Take a photo tour of new bike access on nearly completed Sellwood Bridge

Posted by on December 1st, 2016 at 3:14 pm

Checking in on Sellwood Bridge progress-30.jpg
A new bridge on the greenway path on the west side of the main bridge connects walkers and rollers headed eastbound into Sellwood.
(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

It’s been almost a decade since our very first post about replacing the old Sellwood Bridge. Now, after years of debates over funding sources and designs, the new bridge is almost 100 percent complete.

While it re-opened to traffic back in February, many of the bikeway elements were unfinished. In recent weeks Multnomah County has made significant progress on the bike lanes, sidepaths, crossings on the west side, and on the greenway path connections. I rolled over a few days ago for a closer look at how it was all shaping up.

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Weekend Event Guide: Ale fest, SSCXWC, Chris King’s 40th, and more

Posted by on December 1st, 2016 at 12:32 pm

Crusade and SSCXWC 09-77
This is what happened the last time the SSCXWC were hosted in Portland (in 2009). There’s no telling what’ll transpire this year.
(Photo: J Maus/BikePortland)

The last time the Single Speed Cyclocross World Championships were in Portland there was a huge steel thunderdome complete with dangers dangling from ropes and a huge bubble-making machine that covered costumed racers in foam. Seven years later there’s really no way to tell what will happen. All we can assume is that it’ll be memorable. Whether you plan to partake in the festivities out on Sauvie Island or have other plans (Holiday Ale fest perhaps?), we hope you enjoy this first weekend of December.

Check out our menu of great rides and events below…

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Sponsor pulls out of Singlespeed Cross “World Championships” amid sexism concerns

Posted by on December 1st, 2016 at 11:23 am

” This event is about being inclusive. We are not arguing that some of these things aren’t juvenile, but the goal isn’t to be sexist, it’s to be equally silly to everyone.”
— Dani Dance, PDX Singlespeed Collective

Hundreds of racers from all over the country will descend on Portland this weekend for the “officially unofficial” 10th annual Singlespeed Cyclocross World Championships (SSCXWC) — but some fans have decided not to attend and one of its sponsors has pulled out. They say the marketing of the event has been blatantly sexist and objectifies women.

SSCXWC, which got its start in Portland in 2007 and will be held this year at Kruger’s Farm on Sauvie Island, is legendary for its irreverent and debaucherous approach to cyclocross racing. Beer, mandatory tattoos for the winners, crazy costumes, severe heckling, and even strippers are expected elements of the race atmosphere. As the weekend approaches, it feels like everyone in the local bike racing scene is buzzing about it. Registration has been sold out for weeks as organizers have teased out details of Saturday’s main event as part of an elaborate and creative marketing strategy.

But some people feel like the promotion of the event has crossed a line from edgy humor to outright sexism — a behavior the bike industry on the whole has struggled with for many years.

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PSU transportation class projects: A Safer SW Salmon Street by Ross Peizer

Posted by on December 1st, 2016 at 9:02 am

Ross Peizer wants to create a safe bikeway on Salmon that would connect Washington Park to the Willamette River.

Ross Peizer wants to create a safe bikeway on Salmon that would connect Washington Park to the Willamette River.

(Publisher’s note: This week we’re excited to highlight a few of the projects created by students in Portland State University’s Traffic and Transportation course. As we reported in a profile earlier this year, the class has had a vast impact on Portland in numerous ways by churning out over 1,200 smart and inspired graduates since 1991. We worked with class assistant Rebecca Hamilton (a graduate herself who now works at Metro) to share three of the projects. Learn about Amy Wren’s work to improve biking and walking near Bridger Elementary School and Charles Tso’s work on parking benefit districts.)

SW Salmon Street Bikeway between Washington Park and the Willamette River – Ross Peizer

There are precious few convenient and safe east-west routes for cycling through downtown Portland. In the southwest quadrant I-405, the Park Blocks, and Portland State University buildings are just some of the impediments to cycling access between Washington Park and the Willamette. Ross Peizer (who took a job as program manager with the Westside Transportation Alliance last year) thinks SW Salmon is a good candidate for improvements.

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City will make Clinton traffic diverter permanent after data shows it’s working

Posted by on November 30th, 2016 at 2:47 pm

SE Clinton traffic diversion project-5
It worked.
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

On the eve of the Bureau of Transportation’s Vision Zero Action Plan going before City Council, the City of Portland just released some positive safety news: The traffic diverters installed on Southeast Clinton Street are working very well and the one at 32nd will be redesigned and made permanent in the next few weeks.

The diverters at SE 17th and 32nd were part of a comprehensive effort to tame auto traffic on Clinton that included educational outreach, public meetings, speed bumps, lower speed limits, “Bicycles May Use Full Lane” signs, and targeted enforcement. As one of the oldest and most used neighborhood greenways in the city, Clinton (which has about 3,000 bicycle users a day) was originally designed to prioritize bicycling; but driving skyrocketed in recent years as the surrounding neighborhoods added new residents, shops, restaurants and offices. In July 2014 we reported on growing rancor among bicycle users who called Clinton a “bikeway in name only.” Those concerns led community activism and became a rallying cry for the fledgling, all-volunteer bike advocacy group Bike Loud PDX.

Just four months after BikeLoud’s activism began, the City’s Bureau of Transportation launched a comprehensive assessment of the neighborhood greenway system (that would later be adopted by City Council) and agreed to meet with representatives from the group to learn more about the issues.

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PSU transportation class projects: Safer routes to Bridger School by Amy Wren

Posted by on November 30th, 2016 at 12:14 pm

SE 80th looking towards Mill, right outside an elementary school.(Photos: Amy Wren)

SE 80th looking towards Mill, right outside an elementary school.
(Photos: Amy Wren)

(Publisher’s note: This week we’re excited to highlight a few of the projects created by students in Portland State University’s Traffic and Transportation course. As we reported in a profile earlier this year, the class has had a vast impact on Portland in numerous ways by churning out over 1,200 smart and inspired graduates since 1991. We worked with class assistant Rebecca Hamilton (a graduate herself who now works at Metro) to share three of the projects that will be presented by students in class later this week. Yesterday we shared Charles Tso’s work on parking benefit districts.)

Safer routes to Bridger Elementary School – Amy Wren

Tucked between Southeast 82nd Avenue and Mt. Tabor Park, Bridger Elementary School is surrounded by streets that lack sidewalks and that are littered with big potholes and gravel. Add in winter weather and vehicle traffic and you’ve got a recipe for danger and stress. For her project, Amy Wren (who took the PSU class after reading about it on BikePortland!) asked a simple question: Would you want your kids to bike or walk on those streets?

What’s your big idea?

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Biking and Safe Routes to School programs come up big in $2.5 million worth of regional grants

Posted by on November 30th, 2016 at 10:15 am

Bike to School Day in NoPo-17
About a quarter of the grants went to Safe Routes to School programs.
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

Here’s some good news: Metro just announced grants to 17 agencies and organizations throughout the region that will make it easier to get around without driving alone. The grants are worth a total of $2.5 million — money that comes from the federal government and is doled out by Metro via their Regional Travel Options (RTO) program.

Metro spokesman Craig Beebe said, “This cycle’s awardees continue the program’s trend of focusing on youth and underserved communities.”

On that note, a $178,000 grant to the Community Cycling Center will allow the nonprofit to implement a “community centered” Safe Routes to School program at Title I schools (where students come from low-income families). And the Bicycle Transportation Alliance won $203,000 for an “Access to Bicycling initiative” that will include a continuation of their Women Bike program and hands-on bike repair and riding clinics at workplaces and in communities around the region. In Washington County, the Westside Transportation Alliance will use its $196,000 grant to encourage biking, walking and transit use in areas with a high percentage of low-wage and shift workers.

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