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Comment of the Week: A little perspective on city rankings

Posted by on August 29th, 2014 at 3:31 pm

Like best-guitarist-of-all-time rankings, best-bike-city rankings are mostly just for fun. But in a week when Portland reportedly got a serious demotion from the granddaddy of bike rankings, reader MaxD’s reaction probably spoke for a lot of us.


Here it is:

I am going to ride across the WIllamette, down Front>Kittredge>30> Saltzman where I will ride through the lovely, cool Forest Park to Skyline, descend Germantown, back over the Willamette with views of Mt Hood and Mt St Helens, and home via Willamette Blvd enjoying views of the river and the west hills. I would not rather be riding in New York, Chicago, or Minneapolis, despite the ranking.

Have a lovely weekend, everyone. Jonathan and I are both out of town until Monday evening — see you Tuesday.


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Comments
  • Adron @ Transit Sleuth August 29, 2014 at 3:37 pm

    \m/

    …on that note, I think I’ll go try to take the same ride. It sounds like a great one.

    …if not, it’ll be an awesome ride none the less. ;)

    Recommended Thumb up 6

  • MaxD August 29, 2014 at 3:55 pm

    I am glad my comment resonated! I ride year-round, but I have been loving riding around Portland this summer! Particularly my “long way home” rides after work. Last evening’s ride was perfect!

    However, to anyone trying it for the first time: careful crossing the rr tracks on Front (make sure not cars are coming behind you, then swerve out a bit to cross perpendicular), use the center lane (with caution) on 30 to get on to Saltzman, and ignore the sharrows on the St John’s Bridge and ride that skinny sidewalk- it is slower, but it is not worth risking your life in the lane! Enjoy the woods, the descent and the incomparable river and mountain views!

    Recommended Thumb up 13

    • Scott H August 29, 2014 at 8:24 pm

      That skinny sidewalk makes me feel like I’m going to tumble over the handrails! I usually stand there until traffic calms down and make use of the sharrows.

      Initiate pessimism: God forbid the DOT lower or enforce the speed limit on our most scenic bridge. I dream that once Clinton has diverters, we can have a few protest rides on the St Johns bridge.

      Recommended Thumb up 13

      • Kevin Love August 30, 2014 at 1:27 pm

        And that’s why Portland was demoted.

        Recommended Thumb up 8

      • spare_wheel August 30, 2014 at 5:58 pm

        diverters and speed bumps on the st. john’s bridge! (only half joking)

        Recommended Thumb up 2

    • Andy K September 2, 2014 at 6:23 am

      Cheers to MaxD for the comment, BikePortland for providing the place to post it, and all the wonderful Portlanders who ride year-round.

      Recommended Thumb up 3

  • Mossby Pomegranate August 29, 2014 at 8:38 pm

    Awww. Portland got it’s feelings hurt. Buck up!

    Recommended Thumb up 8

    • wsbob August 29, 2014 at 10:48 pm

      “…a serious demotion…” andersen/bikeportland

      Serious? Pooey. It’s a silly magazine rating.

      It’s too bad some people are so desperate to find solace in a comment such as MaxD’s, to salve their poor wounded egos, instead of doing better thinking about ways of making the city’s infrastructure for biking, better for basic riding.

      Recommended Thumb up 5

      • Chris I August 31, 2014 at 5:39 pm

        We can defend our title as the best cycling city in the US and push for improved infrastructure at the same time; these things are not mutually exclusive. I think everyone on this site (except for Mossby, maybe) advocate for improvements. You have apparently been focusing so much on contrarian opinions that you don’t comprehend what we all are advocating for, and have been for many years.

        Recommended Thumb up 7

        • wsbob September 1, 2014 at 12:06 am

          If the ‘title’ you’re referring to, is that assigned at it’s determination, by a bicycle magazine, to various cities across the U.S., it’s worth keeping in mind that this is all that so called title is.

          Prioritizing the retention of that type of title should not be worth devoting much beyond casual interest. You, of course, and perhaps some of the rest of your unspecified group of ‘we’, have made it clear now, that you think differently. Which is fine, if you think it’s important to get all upset about the city not being number one on a bicycle magazines list of top cities for biking.

          You have an opportunity to offer, here, in this very comment section, real ideas with at least some thought behind them, for improving the city’s infrastructure for biking. Instead, you choose to just make jokes, that amount to no advocating whatsoever. Please knock off doing that any further, and get to the serious, constructive business of moving the city and the Metro area forward to better conditions for biking.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

        • wsbob September 1, 2014 at 12:55 am

          If the ‘title’ you’re referring to, is that assigned at it’s determination, by a bicycle magazine, to various cities across the U.S., it’s worth keeping in mind that this is all that so called title is.

          Prioritizing the retention of that type of title should not be worth devoting much beyond casual interest. You, of course, and perhaps some of the rest of your unspecified group of ‘we’, have made it clear now, that you think differently. Which is fine, if you think it’s important to get all upset about the city not being number one on a bicycle magazines list of top cities for biking.

          You have an opportunity to offer, here, in this very comment section, real ideas with at least some thought behind them, for improving the city’s infrastructure for biking. Instead, you choose to just make jokes, that amount to no advocating whatsoever. Please knock off doing that any further, and get to the serious, constructive business of moving the city and the Metro area forward to better conditions for biking.

          I should say also, that I consider your accusation of ‘contrarian’, with reference to opinions I’ve offered, to neither be valid or justified. Disagreement with some opinions other people offer? Yes, and doing so is part of the constructive process to ultimately coming up with a better end result.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

          • Panda September 1, 2014 at 7:35 am

            Well one real idea for improvement that MaxD’s comment highlights, is to focus on Portland’s strengths. We have beautiful, world class cycling all around us that regular people can access on regular-ish bikes on an after-work ride. Forest park, skyline, river view, Springwater, Powell Butte, tabor, rocky butte, Smith by bee, the trail, and roads along the Columbia- there is a lot of great cycling. Because it is recreational or semi-recreational, it doesn’t get a lot of attention by bike advocates. And all of these areas have their gaps, or their Achilles heel, that make it it unsafe or uncomfortable in places. Wouldn’t itbe great to see Portland develop some 15-50 mile close- in recreational loops? Get bikes over the St. John’s bridge, across Colmbia blvd, connect Tabor, Rocky and Powell buttes- enhance our amenities!

            Recommended Thumb up 6

            • Alex September 1, 2014 at 10:07 pm

              We really do need to embrace recreational cycling more. I would love to see Forest Park actually open to ride and a real conversation to happen about that. Unfortunately there are a few very politically active people who do not want it this way. If you want to stage a protest ride, we should do it on Wildwood.

              Recommended Thumb up 2

  • Bret August 29, 2014 at 10:39 pm

    I totally enjoy riding in New York, Minneapolis and Chicago. Those cities are great. They have nice areas like Clinton. I was on Clinton this evening and the vibe was totally cool. Recently in Mexico City I found the bike scene to be pretty amazing there as well. We have to keep up the community activism like what is happening on Clinton. Small incremental improvements forced by community activism are needed to go with big dollar project wins as often as possible.

    Recommended Thumb up 6

  • Guy works at Llyod September 2, 2014 at 11:35 am

    We needed a demotion. How is it we can hold a high rank when we made a city work for tour bikes after ripping out and paving all the MTB single tracks that proliferated this area through the 80′s and 90′s.

    Spring Water, Marquam and WW were multi-use, until the richers spent a bunch of money and got their way.

    Recommended Thumb up 1

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