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ODOT announces ‘listening sessions’ for state Bike & Ped Mode Plan

Posted by on August 4th, 2014 at 4:51 pm

The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) has been working on their new Bicycle and Pedestrian Mode Plan for just over a year. Now they want to hear what Oregonians think.

ODOT has announced a series of five “listening sessions” around the state that are being billed as a way to “help inform policy development” of the plan.

Keep in mind that this effort isn’t merely an update to the existing statewide biking and walking plan. That plan was last updated in 1995 and it has almost zero political teeth. As a strictly “staff-level” plan, the outdated document is only a guide for ODOT employees that tells them general best practices when it comes to bicycle access issues. This new effort will create an entirely new plan, a “mode plan” that, once officially adopted, will be given the same institutional respect that their Highway Plan and Freight Plan currently enjoy.

Here’s more about the listening sessions via the official announcement:

How can we turn challenges into opportunities to help inform policy development?

The Oregon Department of Transportation is hosting a series of Listening Meeting Workshops to hear from you on key policy issues that relate to walking and biking in Oregon. At the workshops, we will ask specific questions related to critical destinations, connectivity, and safety that will help inform policy development for the Oregon Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan (OBPP). The workshop will include an introductory presentation of the OBPP, highlight opportunities and challenges learned to date, and then break into table discussions. Please plan to attend the full workshop.


The listening sessions begin late this month in Bend with a Portland (Region 1) event slated for September 24th. Below are all five events. Not that you must register to attend:

Bend
August 27 from 9:00a-11:30a
ODOT Region 4
63055 N Hwy 97 Bldg. M
Register online

Medford
September 16
1:00p-3:30p
Santo Community Ctr
701 N. Columbus Ave
Register online

Eugene
September 17
9:00a-11:30a
Eugene Library
100 W 10th Ave
Register online

La Grande
September 23
2:00p-4:30p
ODOT Region 5
3012 Island Ave
Register online

Portland
September 24
2:30p-5:00p
ODOT Region 1
123 NW Flanders St
Register online


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Comments
  • gutterbunnybikes August 4, 2014 at 8:24 pm

    Must not be too interested in public opinion, considering all of them are on either a Tuesday or Wednesday during business/work hours…….Typical.

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    • Curt Ailes August 5, 2014 at 7:16 am

      I find the daytime hours to be typical of state DOT no matter what part of the country.

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      • q`Tzal August 5, 2014 at 10:08 am

        Yes. These would be “listening to lobbyists” sessions.

        ODOT and others might believe that they want to listen to the general public but by scheduling “listening sessions” during the working hours of the majority of people they insure (intentionally/unintentionally?) that the only people that ODOT will hear will be people PAID to talk at government officials.

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  • kiel johnson August 4, 2014 at 11:24 pm

    i was hoping they would hold the portland one on barbur

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  • KristenT August 5, 2014 at 9:01 am

    “ODOT” and “listening” do not go together. Or, rather, ODOT listens very well- and then ignores our concerns altogether.

    I’ve been pushing for ODOT to get down to Hall Blvd in Tigard and sweep the bike lanes– especially at the far Southern end, just before Sattler Rd, where a seriously huge quantity of glass has accumulated. I even went out and swept (with a broom, by hand) the bike lane clear about a month ago, but haven’t had time for a repeat performance.

    ODOT says, “Thanks for letting us know! We’ll get our crews in the area to go over and take care of it!” and then nothing happens.

    Now they’ve created a mini Oregon Dunes in the bike lane from 99W all the way to Durham Rd with lots and lots of sand. Drifts, dunes, and piles of sand. If I wanted to ride on sand I would go to the beach. And the sand covers the glass so now you can’t see it, which means I expect incidents of flat tires to go up. And ODOT says, “we’re working on a project and should have it cleaned up in the next few weeks”, but I’m not holding my breath.

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    • 9watts August 5, 2014 at 4:48 pm

      “ODOT” and “listening” do not go together.

      I hear you, KristenT. I signed up for the Portland one anyway. Maybe they’re ready to try something new? Maybe they’re tired of digging the hole deeper.

      You never know. Even Matt Garrett, that dreadful CRC shill, may come around eventually. If so I think it may have to do with ODOT having the out-of-money experience.

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  • Granpa August 5, 2014 at 1:25 pm

    If Roger Geller could put ODOT’s Matt Garrett on an E-Bike and tour him through some of the many examples of profound bike infrastructure, that would be worth a year of public meetings (and one year of public meetings is worth one hug and 3 good intentions)

    By profound examples of bike infrastructure I mean terrible and unsafe, like Barbur at the bridges, Bad and intimidating, like Foster or Interstate north of the Moda Center. Or impossible, like 82nd.

    Also Roger’s tour could include some examples of profoundly good bike infrastructure like the Springwater trail, or the (generally) self-regulating harmony of commuters each day at the Hawthorn Bridge. I would be happy to volunteer my pick-up truck to ferry that fact-finding tour between different parts of the city (of Portland)

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  • jim mclaren August 5, 2014 at 2:19 pm

    In addition to what I’ve seen in other comments I also wonder why the only listening session for the Metro area is in Portland. There could easily be one in each of the other two Metro counties.
    How about this – what if a coalition of bike shops held their own listening sessions and then passed what they learned on to the planners at ODOT.

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  • Doug Klotz August 5, 2014 at 9:49 pm

    This is blatantly anti-public behavior. All of ODOT’s “listening sessions” are during work hours? Who the heck are they trying to impress with this press release? The whole thing is a sham. It’s not public involvement at all.

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  • Doug Klotz August 5, 2014 at 9:50 pm

    And why the heck do you need to “register” to go speak to them?

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    • 9watts August 5, 2014 at 9:54 pm

      so they can send drones out in search of you?

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