Archive for December, 2008

Top 10 most viewed stories of 2008

Wednesday, December 31st, 2008
Brett's ghost bike is back-3.jpg
This ghost bike was stolen, then
returned by a regretful thief.
(Photos © J. Maus)

Looking back at the 1,385 stories published on BikePortland.org in 2008, we thought it would be fun to take a look at the ones that you read the most. I looked up our top ten stories by total number of pageviews* and here’s what I found (some results I expected, others surprised me).

1. Man on a bike is tackled, then tasered by Portland Police (6/11/08)
This unfortunate incident was by far the biggest story of the year. It was picked up by local and national media and created a huge buzz across the Web. By the way, the civil criminal component of this case will go to trial in mid-January.

2. Road rage incident sparks media frenzy, spurs us-them mentality (7/10/08)
Opening with a photo of the Oregonian front page headline “Cyclist clubs driver with his bike,” this story was my response and analysis of the impact of mainstream media coverage on stereotypes and conflict on our streets.


New Haven: Brompton love, and signs of the Dutch Bike Invasion

Tuesday, December 30th, 2008
Sam, Caleb, Finn, the Brompton, and me. (Photo by Sarah Armstrong)

I just wheeled the Brompton into the Publick Cup, a downtown New Haven coffeeshop, and found myself surrounded by a crowd of wide eyed young people.

“Is that a bike? It folds? It’s a folding bike? Can you unfold it for us?” The kids were really excited. They raptly watched each step, asking smart questions about how all the parts work, and making guesses about what came next.

I folded the bike back up. “Can you do it again?” asked one. As I complied, several of the kids were ushered away, leaving only three. Their mom came over to see what was going on.

“Oh, look, it’s from Clever Cycles!” she exclaimed — “I’m ordering a Bakfiets from them!”


Cruisers and crowds; a trip to Surf City, USA

Tuesday, December 30th, 2008
Scenes from Huntington Beach-3
Bike parking under the Huntington Beach Pier.
(Photos © J. Maus)

A trip to Huntington Beach for dinner last night made me feel old. As a kid, I remember spending countless days at that beach, trying to hone my surfing skills and hanging out on the sand with friends. The boardwalk path that runs at the edge of the sand was also where many of my first long bike rides culminated and where I fostered my earliest delusions of bike-racing grandeur.


Guest Article: Why Portland needs a safe passing distance ordinance

Tuesday, December 30th, 2008
Christopher Heaps

The article below was written by Christopher Heaps. Heaps is a Sellwood resident who rides his bike daily to his job as a lawyer with Stoel Rives in downtown Portland.

You might remember Heaps as the lawyer who garnered a headline or two for successfully carrying out the “citizen-initiated citation” process. We wrote about Heaps earlier this month because he’s representing two men who feel they were wrongly cited in the Ainsworth Incident.

In the article below, Heaps shares his thoughts on why he thinks Portland should adopt a new safe passing ordinance.


City storm clean-up crews “focusing on bike routes”

Monday, December 29th, 2008

After two weeks of a once-in-a-generation winter storm that pelted Portland into submission, the Bureau of Transportation is now in full clean up mode.

A few days after the first snow fell, we turned our attention to how gravel laid down by PBOT to break up the ice was impacting bikeways. Back on December 16th, they didn’t mince words in telling us that we shouldn’t expect the gravel to be picked up “any time soon.”


Job of the Week: Intern for Filmed by Bike

Monday, December 29th, 2008

Filmed by Bike is Portland’s very own bike film festival. Each year, the event has exceeded the organizer’s expectations. If you’d like to be part of this event as an intern, check out the opportunity listed below…


“Go for Green”: League announces National Bike Summit workshops

Monday, December 29th, 2008
Cover of 2009 Summit brochure.

The League of American Bicyclists has announced details of the workshops that will be presented at their annual National Bike Summit that will take place in Washington D.C. on March 10 – 13th.

The event is both an educational and networking opportunity for bike advocates across the country as well as a chance to lobby lawmakers on Capitol Hill.

Here are some workshops that caught my eye (followed by my thoughts):

Bicycle advocates and industry leaders united for change.
The bicycle industry is more involved than ever in advocacy. Learn how we can more effectively work together in the corridors of power.


In New Haven: A rail-trail slowly comes of age

Monday, December 29th, 2008

[This story was written by BikePortland.org Managing Editor Elly Blue. She’s on an East Coast Tour. Follow her adventures here.]

New Haven Mayor John DeStefano (in center) about to cut the ribbon on a new bridge over a newly paved section of the Farmington Canal Trail.
(Photos by Elly Blue)


PBOT Press Release: City Crews Begin Street Cleanup

Monday, December 29th, 2008

Here’s the latest storm advisory from the Bureau of Transportation. The release below has updates on road conditions, maintenance priorities, and so on (also available online here).

City Crews Begin Street Cleanup

Released: December 29, 2008

(PORTLAND, OR) – The Portland Bureau of Transportation is transitioning work crews to cleanup operations as the city recovers from a two-week severe winter weather event. Sewer crews are clearing clogged catch basins, culverts, and trash racks of debris to prevent drainage problems and street flooding. Street-sweepers are beginning sand and gravel cleanup. The Bureau will continue to staff according to conditions throughout this phase of the recovery effort and any new storm system that may arrive.


Gravel and other storm detritus: What’s it like out there?

Monday, December 29th, 2008
Snow piled high in the bike lane on
SW Broadway on 12/26.
(Photo: Rex Burkholder)

I’m down in California, but judging from reader emails and a story this morning on KGW-TV, it looks like Portland’s bike lanes are in bad shape following an unprecedented storm that has left streets with mountains of snow, gravel, and other assorted hazards.

I left town just as The Big Thaw was about to begin and I can only imagine what it’s like out there now.