home

Low-income and senior housing projects see a bike parking boom, too

Posted by on January 7th, 2014 at 3:29 pm

The lower-income seniors at Glisan Commons, Northeast 99th and Glisan, are expected to demand substantial bike parking, its developer says.
(Image courtesy REACH.)
real estate beat logo

Apartments with lots of bike parking and little car parking are a hot trend in local real estate, and not just because more well-to-do people are looking to live that way.

Bike parking has become a popular amenity at publicly subsidized apartments in Portland, too. Even those for seniors.

“Our experience has taught us that bike use in our buildings tends to exceed our most optimistic expectations, which is a good thing,” said Laura Recko, a spokeswoman for affordable housing developer REACH. “So we try and accommodate as much as is financially feasible.”

REACH, Human Solutions and Ride Connection, a trio of social-service nonprofits, are co-developing a mixed-use lot at Northeast 99th Avenue and Glisan that will include 127 subsidized units for low-income workers and seniors. Though it sits just east of Interstate 205, the two-phase project will include 147 indoor bike parking spaces, several more than the city code requires.

It has 84 auto parking spots.

Even REACH’s component of the project, which will be reserved specifically for low-income people over 65, is expected to include 50 indoor bike parking spaces for 60 apartments — 30 of them on hanging wall hooks.


That’s lower than the city code’s minimum of 66 bike parking spaces for a 60-unit project. REACH is asking for an exception on the grounds that seniors will have lower demand for bikes than other Portlanders.

Even so, Recko said she expects the senior-housing building’s bike parking to fill up.

“We have definitely not found that seniors ride less,” she said, referring to the popularity of bikes in REACH’s Pearl District building for seniors. “We anticipate the seniors living at Glisan will lead very active lifestyles and we want to accommodate their activities as best we can.”

The workforce apartments now leasing at Glisan Commons are studios and one-bedrooms, with rents topping out at $585. The maximum income to qualify is 60 percent of the Portland area’s median — currently $2,430 a month for one person, $3,125 for a family of three — and the minimum income is 1.5 times a unit’s rent.

In a rental market that’s been one of the country’s tightest for seven years in a row, REACH has had no shortage of interest in any of the projects they’ve been able to finance. It means that when designing projects, the group scours plans for any and all savings — building only as many parking spaces (for bike and car) as are required by either city code or residents’ needs.

“We’re leasing up in record time, unfortunately,” Recko said, recalling one project that opened in December 2012. “We opened the leasing trailer in August of 2012, and we had people sleeping on the sidewalk the night before we opened.”

“Portland is such a hot market,” she said. “And there’s just an overwhelming need for these projects.”

 — The Real Estate Beat is a weekly column. You can sign up to get an email of Real Estate Beat posts (and nothing else) here, or read past installments here. We are looking for a sponsorship partner. If interested, please call Jonathan at (503) 706-8804.

Email This Post Email This Post


Gravatars make better comments... Get yours here.
Please notify the publisher about offensive comments.
Comments
  • Eastsider January 7, 2014 at 3:58 pm

    84 below-grade parking stalls, at a cost of $30,000 each is $2.5M dollars on this project. If there is such a high demand and limited financial resources for low-income housing, is this really the best use of public money for a project located adjacent to light rail and a bike path? For a typical apartment project, you could build 25+ more units for this price.

    Recommended Thumb up 14

    • Michael Andersen (News Editor) January 7, 2014 at 4:30 pm

      Good question (though I can’t confirm those are the actual cost figures here). I’m working on a follow-up piece about the demand for auto parking at low-income developments that have already gone in.

      Recommended Thumb up 3

      • Hart Noecker January 8, 2014 at 12:29 am

        I’d love to see a follow up on the massive Lloyd center apartment complex that addresses the 1,200 car parking spaces to be included in what is being referred to as a ‘transit oriented development’.

        Recommended Thumb up 5

        • Michael Andersen (News Editor) January 8, 2014 at 5:14 am

          Also definitely in the works.

          In the meantime, the main driver for all those underground parking spaces at the Lloyd building (3 levels!) isn’t the residential units, which the developer claims to be is keeping at a very low 0.5 per unit ratio (330 spaces or so for 657 apartments), but the 44,000 square feet of new commercial space and the office space in the existing adjacent tower, which will get the other 900 or so spaces. Since the new commercial space is about half again as big as the Williams Ave New Seasons, which gets by with only 58 on-site auto paking spaces, I assume that part of the deal here is that the new underground parking lot will also serve the nearby office buildings, just as the big parking lots that used to be there did. I hope to better figure this out, though.

          Recommended Thumb up 5

      • Jayson January 8, 2014 at 9:00 am

        When I last looked at the building plans, the 84 parking spaces were on the surface and would be covered by new buildings (phase II of the development), rather than going underground. If this is still the case, the parking spaces would cost significantly less than $30k each. The picture shown in the post seems to suggest the design hasn’t changed.

        Also, low-income families often have a legitimate need for *some* auto parking. They may not have the luxury of turning down jobs in far-flung areas of the region that don’t benefit from good transit access. They are also more likely to have two jobs and can’t afford to spend what precious few moments of their day off the clock to get around. That said, this building is very well served by transit. Residents will be able to get to just about any destination on the eastside with only one transfer.

        Recommended Thumb up 9

        • was carless January 8, 2014 at 9:32 am

          There is no surface parking in the Lloyd apartment superblock – the entire 3-acre parcel was excavated and is being built as a parking garage underground. You can walk, bike or drive by it and see what I mean.

          http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/showpost.php?p=6387524&postcount=18

          Here are the renderings – not there are no surface parking:
          http://www.gbdarchitects.com/portfolio-item/lloyd-blocks-2/

          Recommended Thumb up 0

          • Michael Andersen (News Editor) January 8, 2014 at 10:57 am

            I think Jayson’s talking here about Glisan Commons.

            Recommended Thumb up 3

            • Eastsider January 8, 2014 at 5:51 pm

              I don’t know what the construction costs are for this project but $30k/ stall is typical for below grade parking. If this is above grade, it is probably less although you could argue it is not the best use of the site. Regardless, parking is incredibly expensive to build and can increase the cost of a market rate unit by 30%. I also think that asking for a variance to include less parking than code requires is short-sighted. In the future, this building may change uses to be market rate housing or low-income housing for a different population that is more likely to bike. Public investments should be for the long term.

              Recommended Thumb up 2

    • Peter W January 11, 2014 at 1:46 pm

      Does look like all 84 car spaces are underground — look at the illustration. They seem to have parking where the first floor would otherwise be.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Eastsider January 7, 2014 at 4:47 pm

    Low-income people often spend up to a quarter of their income on owning/ maintaining/ fueling/ insuring/ licensing their cars. Developing a property like this that is set up for car ownership doesn’t make sense. If we’re going to invest billions of dollars in a light rail system, then subsidize housing adjacent to it, there’s no reason this couldn’t be a model development for car-free living.

    It’s great they have ample bike parking but I also question if it is thoughtfully designed for the users. Are the elderly going to be able to lift their bikes onto a hanging rack? Is the bike parking inside where it is secure and out of the elements or is it just racks hung around the perimeter of the parking garage? It just seems like a few cheap bike racks are purchased and placed in left over space as a way to green-wash the project. It is not a design driver.

    Recommended Thumb up 10

  • dwainedibbly January 7, 2014 at 5:13 pm

    Most developers don’t want to make the commitment to build no-parking buildings, especially where cycling infrastructure is relatively lacking. Everyone here pretty much understands the demand, but a developer has investors & bankers to convince. Better (in their mind) to commit to the expense of building parking and get funding for the project than to risk not getting the investor dollars.

    Hanging racks for seniors? Bad idea.

    Recommended Thumb up 4

    • 9watts January 7, 2014 at 8:05 pm

      “Most developers don’t want to make the commitment to build no-parking buildings…”

      I think you meant “Most developers don’t want to make the commitment to build no-car-parking buildings…” I don’t think anyone is saying these people can/should just walk and take the bus (i.e. no need for *any* parking). Just the auto variety is so damned expensive/ugly/and has repercussions for the whole project, never mind the neighborhood, and the future of the planet.

      Recommended Thumb up 3

      • was carless January 8, 2014 at 9:37 am

        …except that they have financed them:

        http://portlandafoot.org/w/No-parking_apartment_buildings

        Its the residents of Portland who recently pressured the city council to change the zoning code, which was based off of years of input in the Portland Plan, to no longer allow no-parking apartments of certain sizes.

        Recommended Thumb up 2

        • Dwayne Dibbly January 8, 2014 at 9:39 am

          Not in the farther out parts of town, though.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

  • John Liu January 7, 2014 at 7:05 pm

    Some people genuinely need a car. They may be physically unable to ride a bike, walk, or take transit. As people age, they are more likely to be in this situation. An elderly person with congestive heart failure – are we going to tell them they can’t live in the building because they are not fit enough for the bike/hike lifestyle?

    I think it makes sense to have some parking. If it turns out to be too much, then excess parking spaces can be converted to (non hanging) bike parking if need be.

    Recommended Thumb up 4

    • 9watts January 7, 2014 at 8:07 pm

      “They may be physically unable to ride a bike, walk, or take transit.”

      This is an interesting and pretty restrictive set of criteria. I wonder what the subset of the folks who fit all those descriptions *and who are physically capable of safely piloting an automobile* is?

      Recommended Thumb up 8

      • John Liu January 7, 2014 at 8:51 pm

        A fair number of older people fall in this category (perfectly capable of driving a car but not of getting around town on bike-bus-foot). Heart disease, severe arthritis, diabetic feet – none of these make one unable to drive.

        Recommended Thumb up 6

        • 9watts January 7, 2014 at 8:55 pm

          this sounds frighteningly circular, self-fulfilling. I would bet good money that in countries that are not car-dependent the rates of all those ailments are vastly lower.

          Recommended Thumb up 8

          • Chris I January 8, 2014 at 6:24 am

            Bingo. It’s the same way with a lot of ADA permit users in this state. They get a doctor’s note for a minor ailment that may not actually reduce mobility, then they get even less physical activity on a daily basis. Eventually, they are so obese that they actually need the permit.

            Recommended Thumb up 4

            • jyl January 11, 2014 at 1:15 pm

              You folks must not know a lot of elderly people. S**t happens as you age, there is no avoiding it. I know guys and ladies who were healthy, fit, bike-hike condition in their 70s but now are slowing dramatically in their 80s and no longer able to be car-free. I know guys who are making the same inevitable transition in their 60s to 70s. It happens to everyone, it will happen to you if you live that long, and then you’ll be bummed out that a bunch of younger, bike-y people dictated that you be forced to live their idealized notion of a car-free existence.

              This building is not being built for healthy, fit, bikey-hikey people. It is not being built for you or for me or for most readers of this blog. This building is being built for older people. Some of whom are healthy enough to do without a car, and some whom aren’t. It is arrogant and naive for you to dictate the lifestyle these elderly people will be permitted to lead.

              Recommended Thumb up 1

              • 9watts January 11, 2014 at 1:43 pm

                “I know guys and ladies who were healthy, fit, bike-hike condition in their 70s but now are slowing dramatically in their 80s and no longer able to be car-free.”

                Someone needs to explain to me how this works. How does resuming driving at 83 when the person in question isn’t able to walk or bike a plausible scenario or one that makes any sense? This strikes me as a peculiarly late 20th Century US scenario. I can’t imagine elderly people in a European country following this pattern.

                “It is arrogant and naive for you to dictate the lifestyle these elderly people will be permitted to lead.”

                Dictate? Whoa. Please explain.

                Recommended Thumb up 1

              • davemess January 12, 2014 at 7:58 am

                I agree with 9watts, why are you assuming that older people who are no longer fit to walk or bike (or apparently take transit) are fit to drive cars as well? We have incredibly lenient driving testing for older folks. My wife’s grandfathers are both in their 90s and still driving. I know them both.There is no way they are capable of driving defensively, neither can hear very well, and one’s sight is borderline, yet here they are still with valid driver’s licenses.

                I also don’t see anyone being forced into this kind of building. It’s a free market, if they see having parking as a major importance people just won’t live there, and if enough people choose to not live there the building will not do well and close. I think this quote says the contrary though:
                “We have definitely not found that seniors ride less,” she said, referring to the popularity of bikes in REACH’s Pearl District building for seniors. “We anticipate the seniors living at Glisan will lead very active lifestyles and we want to accommodate their activities as best we can.”

                Recommended Thumb up 1

  • Kathy January 7, 2014 at 7:33 pm

    As imperfect as its implementation may be, I’m happily amazed to hear of so much demand for bicycle parking for senior housing. That is unheard of here in Syracuse, NY.

    For those elderly persons who may have physical limitations so they cannot ride a bike or even walk enough for regular public transit options, I wondered if Portland has the equivalent of our Call-a-Bus service. Individuals who have physical limitations (verified by a physician) can schedule rides through our bus system (Centro) and pay the same amount they would if they were taking a regular bus.

    Recommended Thumb up 1

  • Mike January 7, 2014 at 7:36 pm

    Have fun riding on Glisan through here!! There are no bike lanes anywhere on Glisan in the Gateway district. From 102nd to 122nd, it has 4 auto travel lanes, parking lanes on both sides, and a full center turn lane, yet “no room” for bike lanes. And no crosswalks for almost 20 blocks. But, if you survive riding down Glisan headed east, you’ll be rewarded when you finally get out of Portland. When you see that “Entering City of Gresham” sign, the bike lanes start up immediately – and the crosswalk paint is actually maintained from there on out to boot.

    Recommended Thumb up 11

    • paikikala January 8, 2014 at 4:03 pm

      “no crosswalks”? I think you mean no marked crosswalks. Crosswalks exist at every intersection, marked or not. Marking crossings on a multilane road does not make the crossing safer. Zegeer studied this. PBOT does not mark multi-lane crossings any more unless they include an island ($20k) and rapid flash beacons (3 x $12k). So we need about $60 per marked crosswalk (not intersection) on a 5-lane road like Glisan.

      Recommended Thumb up 3

  • joel January 7, 2014 at 7:46 pm

    the article makes it sound like Reaches bike area will be targeted for seniors?? if so then bike hangers make no sense. an area with a target group of 65 years and up should not include bike hangers at all.

    even with people over 65 being active we should be a little more accomodating.

    Recommended Thumb up 6

    • Adam January 7, 2014 at 9:05 pm

      Agreed.

      Recommended Thumb up 1

    • Clark in Vancouver January 7, 2014 at 10:03 pm

      Bike hangers will not do for daily use for anyone. They’re okay if it’s long term storage and space is limited.

      Recommended Thumb up 3

      • 9watts January 7, 2014 at 10:05 pm

        Funny when you think about how much space a car (not one hung on a rack but parked normal-like) takes up, and then compare that to a bike. Which one are we so keen on making take up less space?!

        Recommended Thumb up 2

  • Portlander January 7, 2014 at 8:24 pm

    Funny, REACH is currently seeking design approval for Phase 2 of Glisan Commons, in which they want to go below minimum bike parking standards in both number and size. The review hearing is this Thursday at 1:30pm. Here is link to the notice: http://www.portlandoregon.gov/bds/article/472030

    In it REACH seeks variances to the required minimum standards for long-term bike parking. They specifically are trying go below the minimum for parking at the new building, requesting modifcation to 33.266.220.C Standards for all Bicycle Parking. To provide staggered wall-mounted bike racks spaced 1’-6” apart and vertically staggered by 6”, instead of the required 2’ wide spaces and to provide 50 long-term bike spaces instead of the required 66.

    Recommended Thumb up 2

    • Michael Andersen (News Editor) January 7, 2014 at 11:48 pm

      Yeah, I agree that this is strange, given their public statements. It’s mentioned and linked in the post above. It’s not clear to me whether this discrepancy is due to wishful thinking by their spokeswoman (that bikes are more important than they are), wishful thinking by their development team (that bikes are less important than they are), or something else.

      Recommended Thumb up 2

  • Adam January 7, 2014 at 9:04 pm

    Now, if only this can hopefully spur some bigger changes in this auto-centric part of town.

    99th & Glisan feels to me like one of the least-safe parts of town to be a bicyclist or pedestrian. Mostly because of the I-205 freeway on and off-ramps there. I would not like to be a senior crossing at those intersections.

    But regarding the bigger changes – I know planners have long-awaited changes to this ‘hood. Primarily because of Fred Meyer, the blocks in this neighborhood are super sized, and not scaled at all for humans. I have heard several planners state they want to reinstate the regular grid pattern here, and introduce far, far more density into this area.

    This is a very encouraging start.

    Recommended Thumb up 4

    • paikikala January 8, 2014 at 4:09 pm

      The Pacific/Oregon/Holladay Greenway, 130ths Greenway and 3 M projects are in the pipeline. PBOT also has scoped out connecting 99th/100th from the transit center to Tillamook. Preliminary planning is going on for the 100′s and 110′s.

      Recommended Thumb up 1

  • Gezellig January 7, 2014 at 11:41 pm

    John Liu
    Some people genuinely need a car. They may be physically unable to ride a bike, walk, or take transit. As people age, they are more likely to be in this situation. An elderly person with congestive heart failure – are we going to tell them they can’t live in the building because they are not fit enough for the bike/hike lifestyle?

    Ah, but an unfortunately far-too-rarely mentioned huge benefit of better bike infrastructure is that it directly benefits people who are unable to ride bikes!

    This is of course yet another reason why it’s so important and not just a “nice to have” to get separated bike infrastructure in more places. So how do cycletracks benefit people who can’t bike?

    –> Motorized wheelchairs/mobility scooters/etc. are allowed by Oregon law on bike paths. My experience living in the Netherlands (where such vehicles are also allowed on bike infra) is that people who use these vehicles overwhelmingly prefer cycletracks over sidewalks because they allow for smoother, less stressful and just plain faster rides than going on the sidewalk for longer distances. (and Dutch sidewalks generally aren’t even all that bad in the first place, but in comparison have more bumps, imperfections, cracks and obstacles such as garbage bags than cycletracks do)

    –> Cycletracks create another buffer and distance between sidewalks and moving cars, making sidewalks even safer for people using them. This is especially important for people who use wheelchairs or people who use canes/walkers/etc.–some of the most vulnerable pedestrians.

    –> The virtuous-loop effect: since many “bike-curious” (ok, sorry for the term, just had to! :) ) car-drivers refuse to switch out their cars for bikes unless there’s protected infrastructure, the arrival of pervasive cycletracks by definition ends up “converting” noteworthy percentages of those cars into bikes, making the roads safer simply by virtue of there being that many fewer 2-ton metal boxes hurtling down the road.

    Need/want video evidence? As always, the Dutch have it:

    http://youtu.be/xSGx3HSjKDo

    (side note: I want this video to be shown to any and all city councilmembers in the US who give the copout reason that we can’t have better bike infrastructure because it’ll supposedly disenfranchise the less-abled. What nonsense–quite the opposite!)

    Recommended Thumb up 10

    • 9watts January 8, 2014 at 7:17 am

      incredible video, Gezellig. Thanks for posting it.

      Cora Potter – what do you think?

      Recommended Thumb up 1

      • Cora Potter January 9, 2014 at 1:47 pm

        I think it’s great that cities in the Netherlands have developed this sort of infrastructure over the last 6 decades. I also know that dutch cities are very flat and extremely compact and that people still use automobiles there, regularly.

        Recommended Thumb up 2

      • Cora Potter January 9, 2014 at 1:48 pm

        I also didn’t see anyone using a walker in any of those videos.

        Recommended Thumb up 1

  • Gezellig January 8, 2014 at 12:51 am

    Michael Andersen (News Editor)
    Good question (though I can’t confirm those are the actual cost figures here). I’m working on a follow-up piece about the demand for auto parking at low-income developments that have already gone in.

    That sounds like an interesting read to look forward to!

    I wonder if there have also ever been any statistics released on the rate of bike usage in Portland broken down into socioeconomic strata. I know that in many places bike modeshare dives down as income climbs into the upper reaches.

    I remember reading about the LA County Bike Coalition’s awesome program City of Lights (http://la-bike.org/projects/city-lights) which engages the large community of cyclists there who are low-income and/or immigrant residents since they’re often left out of the discussion despite being some of the most prolific cyclists in Los Angeles. I wonder if there’s anything like that going on in Portland.

    It is a tad unfortunate that “cyclist” may often conjure up images of guys in expensive racer gear so well-off they retired early and bike for fun all day (and hey, nothing wrong with that if you’ve got the time/money!) when the reality is that people who bike are so much more diverse than that.

    The fact that many in the general population may be surprised at the inclusion of bike facilities in low-income and/or senior housing perhaps shows that we may need to do a better job of messaging the fact that bike infrastructure/facility/code improvements truly benefit people of all physical abilities, ages and economic situations.

    Recommended Thumb up 4

  • Cycledad January 8, 2014 at 6:19 am

    The proximity to the Gateway Transit mall makes me ponder something’s else: the small amount if space on the MAX for bike parking. It seems the multi model form of transportation is over whelming the current MAX car set up. Thoughts?

    Recommended Thumb up 1

    • davemess January 9, 2014 at 1:40 pm

      Only during rush hours, and even then some trains just don’t have much space period. I don’t think I’ve ever encountered a train where there was no room for my bike (granted I’m not on them at rush hours).

      Recommended Thumb up 0

  • RW January 8, 2014 at 7:04 am

    No car using indoors or within 20 feet of the door. Beyond that, if ya got ‘em smoke ‘em eh? Does anyone ever consider anything beyond what happens when this scam (disguised as green fad) matures?

    What happens if say. . .more than one inmate decides to have any sort of gathering at its trendy new digs? Lemme guess, inmates gather at the kumbaya commons twitter trough and peacefully negotiate (insert latest PC word for holiday) parking protocol. . .

    Unless its visitors are mostly hip to this Agenda, there might be evil autocentrism orbiting the project in a game of musical parking spots. This usually fouls up high density, no parking pipe dreams. Amsterdam has population density 9,600/sq mi. Portland has 4,400/sq mi. Wonder how many Portland seniors are dutch expats used to sardine can living?

    It might be better in the long run to propagate this agenda through your well established public indoctrination system preparing young people to slave with a (grin) for THEIR i-device charger/sardine can.

    For us Beatlemania survivors, shoehorning your trip into a high rise ghetto scene is no fun at all. To this one it sounds like marketing overpriced bunk houses to lower echelon pipe dreamers.

    BTW; why is this agenda so prominent in this blog?

    Recommended Thumb up 4

    • 9watts January 8, 2014 at 7:07 am

      Great post – but why so afraid of density and the coming post-car world? You gotta start somewhere, eh?

      Recommended Thumb up 4

    • Alex Reed January 8, 2014 at 7:18 am

      Wow, this is a hilarious and epic post. I love the part where you imply that low-income people are all felons by calling the residents “inmates.” It really just gives your post that delicious note of intolerance!

      Recommended Thumb up 6

      • davemess January 9, 2014 at 1:42 pm

        I took it to imply that the housing complex was more like a prison and that’s why they were inmates.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Alex Reed January 8, 2014 at 7:41 am

      I apologize for my sarcastic post above – not very nice, sorry! What I should have said is – I hear what you’re trying to say. I think it would be more likely to result in productive dialogue here if you used words other than “inmate” to refer to low-income people and “ghetto ” to refer to the area where they live.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Oliver January 8, 2014 at 9:46 am

        I don’t know that I’d bother to apologize, I’m pretty sure I saw the op write something about Agenda 21 once. Some people simply refuse to believe the population trajectory in the world, and imagine that by some law yet unrecognized in the fields of physics and/or economics (but likely promoted on cable access or am radio) that everyone will continue to be able to have 2500 sq foot houses, or that the average person will be able to afford them simply because in the 50′s it was thus.

        Recommended Thumb up 2

    • was carless January 9, 2014 at 1:32 pm

      Nice bit of classism! So if you are unable to afford a house, by your definition we are “inmates?” Wow, thank you for being elitist!

      Aside from more important issues of climate change, unaffordable cities, and under-investment in transit and cycling, the baby boomer generation has pretty much been self-serving and completely responsible for mucking up the entire world – economically, politically, and environmentally.

      But yeah, lets complain about those darned kids living in apartments that are challenging your worldview. First world problems, eh?

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • RW January 10, 2014 at 6:39 am

        What part of slaving for multiple employers or worse, grovelling to maintain one ‘full time position’, to pay for one of these cages would you really call “living”?

        Sorry my “world view” of questioning such a “living” situation touched the part of you that still lives. I refuse to apologize for experiencing 1965.

        In fact. . . if I was the self centered materialist boomer you might imagine I would be sitting here gloating. Instead of just asking scared little kids to question a load of crap that’s being imposed by those who profit from your incarceration.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

        • 9watts January 10, 2014 at 7:27 am

          “your incarceration”

          How do you know so much about us?
          Are you also ‘incarcerated’?

          Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Joe January 8, 2014 at 8:22 am

    smart planning better then most urban devs like to do. huge mass car parking lots in condos these days.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • was carless January 8, 2014 at 10:45 am

    I hate to nitpick, but these statements are contradictory:

    “Our experience has taught us that bike use in our buildings tends to exceed our most optimistic expectations, which is a good thing,” said Laura Recko, a spokeswoman for affordable housing developer REACH. “So we try and accommodate as much as is financially feasible.”

    Even REACH’s component of the project, which will be reserved specifically for low-income people over 65, is expected to include 50 indoor bike parking spaces for 60 apartments — 30 of them on hanging wall hooks.

    That’s lower than the city code’s minimum of 66 bike parking spaces for a 60-unit project. REACH is asking for an exception on the grounds that seniors will have lower demand for bikes than other Portlanders.

    “We have definitely not found that seniors ride less,” she said, referring to the popularity of bikes in REACH’s Pearl District building for seniors. “We anticipate the seniors living at Glisan will lead very active lifestyles and we want to accommodate their activities as best we can.”

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Gezellig January 8, 2014 at 1:35 pm

    9watts
    incredible video, Gezellig. Thanks for posting it.

    Thanks, glad you enjoyed! That guy’s YouTube channel (markenlei) is a treasure trove of videos demonstrating how to elegantly tackle some of the most common design problems and issues involved in good separated infrastructure.

    The supposed cycletrack+driveways “problem?” He’s got it. The freeway on/off-ramp “problem?” He’s got that, too. The inherent genius of protected cycletrack intersections? Check. And so on.

    I want to show each of those videos every time some city official in the US claims that X “problem” means we can never have good infrastructure–99% of these same design challenges also exist in the Netherlands and have already been dealt with.

    The only other major stumbling block is the thinly disguised “that’ll-never-work here” defeatist side of American Exceptionalism, usually couched in disingenuous officialese about how proven infrastructure treatments somehow inherently violate ADA (translation: “I’ve never seen that before and new things are scary and that’s not America so I’m shutting out all possibilities of even looking into it”).

    The trick is to finally get at least one American community implementing these kinds of infra treatments to prove that they can and do work in the US, too. Wouldn’t it be awesome if that could be Portland?

    I’m not an urban planner but I’ve shown basically all these vids to a couple US city urban planners I know and they say that pretty much all of those treatments can be designed here to be ADA-compliant. Not only that, such good infrastructure actually significantly *boosts* the mobility of the less-abled!

    Recommended Thumb up 4

  • Gezellig January 8, 2014 at 4:25 pm

    9watts
    Great post – but why so afraid of density and the coming post-car world? You gotta start somewhere, eh?

    What’s extra funny about that is the assumptions made about housing size based on density. High-density and spacious homes are not mutually exclusive. Anecdotal, yes, but the most spacious apartment I’ve ever lived in was in Amsterdam, and found it was not atypical for apartments there.

    I also had to laugh at the poster’s comment on supposed “sardine-can” Dutch senior housing. Senior housing units in Amsterdam must be at least 50 m2 (538 square feet) and many have more (sometimes a lot more) than that. For the curious, here’s a comparable recent senior housing building in Amsterdam:

    http://www.amsterdam.nl/wonen-leefomgeving/wonen/bijzondere-woningen/wibos/wibo-woningen/alle-complexen/oost/blok-5-(ijburg)/

    The units range from 56-63 m2 (602-678 square feet) in that building. That’s not exactly “sardine-can” territory to me, especially for seniors without children.

    I found it on Street View (http://goo.gl/maps/zcc7I). You can see the building is on a major cycletrack and tram line. That’s how you do senior housing!

    The profile does mention car parking in the building is rentable, but it doesn’t say how many spaces there are (despite what some may think the Netherlands is actually still a pretty car-crazy country. It’s just that good bike infra is not seen as being anti-car. The NL also often has parking minimums for many types of buildings–the numbers just aren’t as high as in the US).

    It doesn’t mention how many bike parking spots there are, but that’s because no one there would ever question the existence of plentiful bike parking at or near such a place. :)

    Recommended Thumb up 4

    • was carless January 9, 2014 at 1:38 pm

      There is also a metro station and a Lamborghini parked across the street!

      Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Mossby Pomegranate January 9, 2014 at 6:01 pm

    Ample bike parking in a area like this is kind of sick joke. This is TERRIBLE place to bike. I avoid it like the plague. Hopefully folks living there can make it to the 205 path without being killed.

    Recommended Thumb up 2

  • Beth January 13, 2014 at 11:31 am

    Last summer, I spent three weks on a teaching ssignment in Overland Park, KS, a suburb of Kansas City. Once you cross State Line Road from KCMo into OPK, public transit virtually disappears, coty blocks get longer and there. is a big box retailer on almost every corner of what is essentially a sprawling suburban wasteland. Residential streets are primarily taken up with oversized McMansions, some of which are clusted together behind locking gates. In short, OPK is the polar opposite of Portland.
    For the three weeks I was there, I had a homestay arrangement two miles from where I taught, and negotiated the use of a loaner bicycle and trailer. Every day for three weeks, I towed my guitar back and forth along sidewalks that are easily twice the width of Portland’s. I tried taking the lane on my first day and s pulled over by an OPK policeman who, upon seeing my Oregon ID and learning my business in OPK, strongly advised me to stay on the sidewalks for the duration of my visit.
    I had a lovely visit, worked with great students and made some good friends. I have just been invted to return for a second summer of teaching. Still, I wouldn’t move there permanently for all the money in the world.
    I mention this to illustrate that we have it a lot better here than in MANY cities in the US, and that maybe some of the sour grapes here are misplaced.

    Recommended Thumb up 2

- Daily bike news since 2005 -
BikePortland.org is a production of
PedalTown Media Inc.
321 SW 4th Ave, Ste. 401
Portland, OR 97204

Powered by WordPress. Theme by Clemens Orth.
Subscribe to RSS feed


Original images and content owned by Pedaltown Media, Inc. - Not to be used without permission.