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Police and transportation bureaus team up for enforcement on SE Clinton tomorrow (2/10)

Posted by on February 9th, 2016 at 5:44 pm

SE Clinton traffic diversion project-6
Last month an officer jumped into harm’s way to
stop someone from driving the wrong way through
a recently installed semi-diverter on SE Clinton.
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

The City of Portland will return to Southeast Clinton street for more traffic law enforcement tomorrow morning — one month after installing diverters aimed in calming down traffic. The last time they sent police officers to this area it was to deal with complaints about unsafe driving on what is supposed to be a neighborhood street that prioritizes cycling and walking.

They ended up pulling over 60 people and writing 35 citations for a variety of offenses. We heard several complaints from the community that the police officers assigned to the mission weren’t positioned in a way that allowed them to see the unsafe passing many people are concerned about. Now a lot has changed on Clinton since the Bureau of Transportation installed two new traffic diverters last month: one at SE 32nd and the other at 17th. While we’ve heard reports that biking conditions have improved on the street since the diverters went in, we have also heard that some people still drive dangerously through the diverter at 32nd, which is only a semi-diverter and leaves open the possibility of driving in a zig-zag through it.


Worst Day of the Year Ride February 14th

With help from development interests, Wheeler is dominating mayoral fundraising

Posted by on February 9th, 2016 at 3:49 pm

Safe Sound and Green press event-3.jpg
Then Multnomah County Chair Ted Wheeler at a
2008 event calling for new local road funding.
(Photos: J.Maus/BikePortland)

Former Oregon Treasurer Ted Wheeler has reported raising almost 15 times as much money as his closest competitor in the race to be Portland’s next mayor.

Among his donors are a wide variety of real estate businesses and Paul Romain, the oil and gas station lobbyist who’s threatened to kill the 10-cent local gas tax increase that Wheeler supports.

Multnomah County Commissioner Jules Bailey, the second-biggest draw for donors, has brought in $26,886 since just before declaring his candidacy, compared to Wheeler’s $398,509.

The race’s newest candidate, Portland State University scholar Sarah Innarone, has brought on a campaign manager, so presumably aims to raise money. But she hasn’t been in the race long enough to hit a 30-day fundraising report deadline.

Of the other three registered candidates, only David Schor has reported any campaign finances at all, mostly loans from himself. Bim Ditson and Philip Davis haven’t reported anything.

Part of the reason for Wheeler’s lead is that he’s had longer to raise money. But Wheeler has reported $74,542 raised in 2016 alone, triple Bailey’s four-month total.


To 82nd, and Beyond! Join us for Wonk Night on February 22nd

Posted by on February 9th, 2016 at 3:02 pm


Wonk Night is back.

Our first event of 2016 will trade the downtown office lobby of Lancaster Engineering (our wonderful Wonk Night sponsors) for a location a bit further east: SE Division and 82nd to be exact.

The theme of the night is “To 82nd, and Beyond!” (which I like to say in my Buzz Lightyear voice.) Our mission for the evening is to inform and inspire each other about all the big, small, scary and exciting things happening in this part of Portland. And there’s a lot to talk about.


Oregon’s infamous bike-touring con man is still going strong

Posted by on February 9th, 2016 at 1:12 pm

The infamous “Ian” in 2012.
(Photo: Chad Butler)

A con-man named “Ian” who we exposed for the first time back in 2012 is still at it. And while I don’t support the way he supports himself, I have to admit I’m envious of his lifestyle.


Wonk up! Four notable speakers coming to town

Posted by on February 9th, 2016 at 12:22 pm

JSK at Women's Bicycling Forum
NYC transportation hero Janette Sadik-Khan
visits town next month.
(Photo: J.Maus/BikePortland)

More than any time since I’ve been here, it seems as if Portland is opening its arms and ears to good ideas from elsewhere.

In the coming days and weeks we’ll be welcoming a bunch of nationally known experts on transportation for some timely talks. Delightfully, all of them are free.

With some, we’ll be doing more extensive previews based on advance interviews. With others, we’ll attend and report what they say.


Lawmakers hear testimony on bill that would fill driving’s “negligence gap”

Posted by on February 9th, 2016 at 11:20 am

Julia Corkett’s son had his leg severed by a man who
made a dangerous left turn. She testified about it
in Salem yesterday.

A man’s decision to make a dangerous left turn in front of Alistair Corkett back in May led to a horrific outcome. The 22 year-old’s leg was severed from his body. Barry Allen, the man who was at fault for Corkett’s life-changing injury, was only given a traffic ticket.

If Corkett had died in the collision, the Multnomah County District Attorney’s office would have pursued criminal charges which would not only have provided some level of justice for the community but would have allowed Corkett’s family to seek restitution from the state. However, because Corkett “only” suffered an injury, the DA did not pursue criminal charges.

Back in October at a BikePortland event that was inspired by Corkett’s case, Multnomah County DA Rod Underhill did not mince words when expressing his frustration. “It pissed me off. I’m angry. It just doesn’t seem right. We need to change the law.”


Got polluted air? A good biking network helps, PSU study says

Posted by on February 8th, 2016 at 4:04 pm

In traffic on Grand Avenue-1.jpg
It turns out when people have route options, they choose healthier ones.
(Photo: J.Maus/BikePortland)

Last week’s news that a glass factory on SE 21st Street seems to have been emitting “alarming” levels of arsenic and cadmium has many Portlanders who bike through the area worried.


Industry Ticker: First-ever Fat Bike Festival coming to Mt. Hood this Friday

Posted by on February 8th, 2016 at 2:31 pm

Flyer for the event.

In case you hadn’t realized it yet fat bikes are not just a passing fad. Their popularity has spread all over the country, and the Portland region — with its proximity to lots of sand and snow — is well-poised to be a hotbed (if it isn’t already).

Confirming the trend locally is a new event at Mt. Hood Meadows that just popped into my inbox: a Fat Bike Festival.


City installs new high-tech counter on Eastbank Esplanade path

Posted by on February 8th, 2016 at 2:06 pm

It’s up for the count.
(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

It doesn’t look like much, but the City of Portland has just installed a high-tech new device on the Eastbank Esplanade between the Hawthorne and Morrison bridges (north of SE Salmon). It only stands a few feet tall but it’s stature in the wonky circles of bicycling and walking mode-share metrics is much larger than that. The device will give the Bureau of Transportation, Metro, and the Portland Parks & Recreation bureau access to more detailed data about how many and what type of users are on the path.

All you can see on the outside of the small pillar is a circular eye that faces the path and a photovalic (solar) panel on the top that provides the power. Over the weekend crews cut a small notch in the path’s pavement and buried sensors under the pavement. The device itself is a HI-TRAC CMU (cycle monitoring unit) model made by Pennsylvania company Jamar Technologies. According to the Bureau of Transportation, it cost about $7,500 but Jamar donated all the equipment and PBOT only paid for the labor to install it.

Here’s more from Jamar about the device:


No Tilikum crossing for Bridge Pedal this year

Posted by on February 8th, 2016 at 12:16 pm

Turns out it was a rare treat.
(Photo: M. Andersen/BikePortland)

If you were one of the 20,000 or so people who crossed the Tilikum Bridge during Bridge Pedal last year you are now a part of history.

That’s because it won’t be included in the 2016 version.

After years of construction and anticipation, TriMet’s Tilikum Bridge opened to the public on Sunday, August 9th 2015. It was sweet timing for Bridge Pedal participants, who earned bragging rights for being part of the first wave of people to ever go across it. The bridge was the marquee attraction for last yeart’s event and it featured prominently on all four routes. But the Bridge Pedal/Tilikum relationship might have been nothing more than a torrid a one-day stand.


The Monday Roundup: Beautiful biking ads, mushroom-foraging bike & more

Posted by on February 8th, 2016 at 8:33 am

heart so strong

This week’s Monday Roundup is sponsored by the BTA’s sixth annual bicycle-themed storytelling event, Live the Revolution (February 12th, tickets available now).

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

“Better by Bike”: These five ads from the City of Buenos Aires are more clever and heartwarming than anything I saw on TV Sunday.

“The Forager”: “Is this the first bicycle to come with its own fire-pit, mushroom knife and recycled wooden chopping board?”


Concerns mount over draft of state’s bike plan

Posted by on February 5th, 2016 at 3:52 pm

buczek walking
SW Barbur and Capitol Highway is supposed to become a major urban center.
(Photo by M Andersen/BikePortland)

Staff from bike advocacy groups, from the Metro regional government and from the Portland office of the Oregon Department of Transportation are all pushing for significant changes to a document that will be the foundation of bicycle planning for the next quarter century.

Serious concerns are being expressed about ODOT’s draft of its next Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan. Among the points of contention: the plan doesn’t explicitly say that the state should be putting complete biking and walking facilities on highways like Southwest Barbur, Southeast Powell or Northeast Lombard.

That stands in contrast to the previous state plan, published in 1995, which describes such arterial highways as “potentially the most important element of a complete network of bikeways and walkways.”


State of Oregon might lose “bikeway” designation for Metolius River route

Posted by on February 5th, 2016 at 2:40 pm

Detail of a signage plan for the
Metolius River Loops Scenic Bikeway.

Oregon’s Scenic Bikeway program is about to shrink by 7 percent.

Since becoming an official state program in 2008, Scenic Bikeways have become magnets for bike tourists. They pumped $12.4 million into Oregon’s economy in 2014. There are 14 officially designated routes promoted by the state’s tourism board as recreational attractions and economy boosters for the communities they pass through.

But one of them, the Metolius River Loops Scenic Bikeway, is likely to be dropped off that list for an odd reason: fear that it will attract too many people.


Product Review: Aquilo full-fingered gloves from Planet Bike

Posted by on February 5th, 2016 at 9:58 am

Aquilo Glove by Planet Bike
Hello Aquilo.
(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

If you ride year-round in Portland, you’ve pretty much got to have a pair of gloves — or two, or three, depending on the weather. With temps ranging between 30 to 50 degrees and skies going from sunny and cold to wet and mild and every other combination you can think of these past few months, I’ve been rotating through five different pairs. Yes five. I’ve got two pairs for when it’s raining, two that I use either on their own or as liners if it’s really cold, and my newest pair: the Aquilo gloves from Planet Bike.


Jobs of the Week: Citybikes Cooperative and Cynergy E-Bikes

Posted by on February 5th, 2016 at 9:45 am

Looking for a new gig? We’ve got two job opportunities that just went up this week.

Learn more about each job via the links below…


Gap Week follow-up: You’ve mapped 120 bikeway gaps around the city

Posted by on February 4th, 2016 at 4:26 pm

Bikeway gaps really get on Portlanders’ nerves. That much is clear.

The week after Jonathan and I suggested that people enter their least favorite gaps on a Google Map, the map has 120 items scattered around the Portland area.


Road rage assault leaves man feeling helpless, frustrated and scared

Posted by on February 4th, 2016 at 3:30 pm

Image of the altercation taken by a witness.
Watch video below.

Menacing behavior from motor vehicle users is something that happens all too often. It can take many forms and has varying levels of severity — from annoying and almost comical (like yelling, revving an engine or “rolling coal“) to serious and life-threatening behaviors like aggressive passing and throwing objects at another person.

Reader Jason K. just shared his experience. And we’re sorry to report it was the latter. Jason says he was passed so closely by a man driving a car that the rear-view mirror might have made contact. After that unsettling experience, Jason caught up to the man at a train crossing, tapped on his window, and tried to talk with him. It went downhill from there. Fast.

It all happened this past Saturday afternoon at the intersection of SE 11th and Division.

Jason shared a video with us that was taken by someone in a car who saw the situation unfold.

Here’s the video, followed by excerpts from an email Jason shared with us (emphases mine):


Neighborhood meeting tonight will address homeless camp on Springwater path near 82nd

Posted by on February 4th, 2016 at 1:44 pm

Springwater path near Cartlandia 82nd and Harney-1.jpg
Springwater path west of 82nd.
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

We apologize for the short notice; but we’ve just heard that the Brentwood-Darlington Neighborhood Association is hosting a meeting tonight (7:00 pm at Brentwood Darlington Community Center, 7211 SE 62nd Ave) to talk about issues related to the large number of people living in tents adjacent to the Springwater Corridor path near SE 82nd Ave.

As we reported last month, the situation reached a boiling point when business owners, residents, and users of the path shared a variety of concerns about the impact of the people living on the path. One of the activists mentioned in our story on January 14th, Terry Dublinksi-Milton, connected with Vahid Brown, a well-known homeless advocate who has helped establish the Hazelnut Grove camp in north Portland.


PBOT wants to make W Burnside at 18th/19th safer for biking and walking

Posted by on February 4th, 2016 at 12:59 pm


The Portland Bureau of Transportation has identified a section of West Burnside they’d like to tame; and the result could make it easier to cross the high-speed road that dangerously bisects our city.

The City’s West Burnside Multimodal Study aims to “evaluate opportunities to improve safety and accessibility along and across West Burnside Street between 15th Avenue and 20th Avenue.” We first heard about this project from a reader who saw a presentation about it from a PBOT staffer that was given at a meeting of the Northwest District Association’s transportation committee last night.

Here are more details about the project via PBOT’s website:

West Burnside Street is a major east‐west travel route through downtown Portland and connecting to the West Hills and areas to the west of the City. On an average day, between 21,000 and 25,000 vehicles use the undivided four‐lane facility to travel east or west in the blocks between Interstate 405 (I‐405) and the West Hills.


15th annual ‘Worst Day’ ride has new routes, stops, and a $5,000 costume contest

Posted by on February 4th, 2016 at 10:43 am

Worst Day of the Year Ride 2011-43
Time to bust out of winter with a huge and fun bike ride!
(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

Organizers of Worst Day of the Year Ride, one of the largest in Oregon, are pulling out all the stops for its 15th birthday. The ride is expected to have about 3,000 participants when it rolls out of southeast Portland on February 14th.