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Mayor Hales biked to work this morning, for the fourth Monday in a row

Posted by on September 28th, 2015 at 11:32 am

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Mayor Hales on the Broadway Bridge this morning.
(Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

Portland Mayor Charlie Hales is getting the hang of this biking thing. And I think he likes it.

For the fourth time in as many weeks, the mayor met constituents for coffee and conversation before setting of on his Trek hybrid for City Hall. This time the starting location was Posies Cafe in the north Portland neighborhood of Kenton.

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Pre-ride conversations.

By now the routine has become familiar. He arrives a half-hour early, orders a cup of coffee, takes out his notebook and chats with whoever shows up. It’s a wonderfully simple idea that the mayor seems to genuinely enjoy.

When I showed up this morning at around 7:50 he was seated in the center of a few tables with about 7-8 people around him (a few of the mayor’s staff and Commissioner Steve Novick’s transportation policy guy Timur Ender were also there). The conversation was far from chit-chatty; it was actually quite serious given that it was before 8:00 am on a Monday. I think people are starting to realize what a wonderful opportunity it is to sit across a table from the most powerful person in Portland and ask him anything you want.

And it’s worth noting that these conversations are not all about bikes. In fact, bikes never even came up at the cafe this morning. The people around the table — all of whom were engaged activists and very on-point with their facts and issues — wanted to talk about homelessness (“We want no sweeps and more space”), housing affordability (“Rents are out of control, my friends are being pushed out”), the role of developers (“Everything that Eli Spevak [of Orange Splot Development] has asked for we should do right away”), police conduct around the arrest last month of Don’t Shoot PDX leader Teressa Raiford (“There were plenty of white people blocking traffic, her charges should be dropped”), and so on.

Hales listened, took notes, and responded to people’s questions and concerns with confidence and candor. When it was time to roll (it was 8:15 am and he had a 9:00 am meeting downtown to get to you), we walked out to the bike parking corral out front. I was hoping we’d go south on Greeley and Interstate to connect to the Broadway Bridge. Both of those streets have major safety issues that need to be addressed and having the mayor experience them first-hand would be extremely helpful.

Unfortunately however, one of Hales’ staffers felt Greeley would be too unsafe. “That’s the whole point!” I tried to object. And Hales too, to his credit, lightly supported the notion of riding on Greeley (“I want to see what’s broken,” I believe is what he said); but he kindly deferred to his staffer.

The route we ended up doing took us south on Denver, then east on Rosa Parks to Vancouver. We rode south on Vancouver and connected to the Broadway Bridge via Flint and Broadway. Once downtown, we took the lane prior to Burnside to get onto SW 5th (transit mall) which goes directly to City Hall.

Here’s how it looked from the mayor’s perspective…

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Heading west on N Rosa Parks Way crossing Interstate Avenue.
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Rosa Parks Way bike lane going over I-5.
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Turning right from Rosa Parks Way onto Vancouver.
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As people driving on Vancouver waited in bumper-to-bumper traffic for many blocks, I reminded the mayor that when you’re on a bike, you are never stuck in traffic.
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He made sure to put a foot down (which isn’t required by law) at the infamous Flint Avenue stop sign (site of many past police enforcement actions a.k.a. “stings”).
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Heading toward the bridge on Broadway.
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Entering chaos zone.
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Narrow passage due to project scaffolding.
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Protected by City Hall staffers on all sides while taking the lane on West Burnside.

As the only non-staff person on most of the ride, I took the opportunity to chat with the mayor about a number of things. Any themes emerging from these past few weeks seeing the streets from a bike seat? I asked. “The little gaps and gripes people have,” he said. (Keep in mind everyone, that he’s trying to bike safely while I’m asking him questions so he’s understandably pre-occupied.)

I also asked if he noticed anything different about the people he sees on Sunday Parkways compared to the ones he’s been seeing on these bike commutes. “More families and kids,” he responded. “Why?” I followed-up. “They don’t feel safe,” he said. “They wanted protected places to ride.”

Mayor Hales then shared a common excuse we often hear from politicians and city staffers about why we can’t easily build protected bikeways downtown: They say our old city has streets are too narrow and blocks that are too short. My response was that perhaps it’s time to consider reducing the redundant access to roads we have when we’re driving. I put in my plug for making Director Park into a world-class plaza by prohibiting auto access on two sides (9th and Park). I couldn’t tell if he supported that idea or not, but he did mention an upcoming renovation of the Guild Theater, so perhaps that’s an opportunity to re-think auto access at that location.

Mayor Hales bikes to work from Kenton-17.jpg

The mayor then mentioned how pleased he’s been with the approach taken by Better Block PDX to demonstrate how we could design more protected spaces for riding and walking. If he liked those events, I asked, and they’re considered a success, why haven’t we gone back and implemented them for real? He said the new bike lane coming to SW 3rd is an example of making something permanent (that project is supposed to be striped sometime this week). I asked why we can’t implement the “Better Naito” project and was happy to hear him say, “That’s the next thing on our list.”

While I was disappointed he didn’t experience the hair-raising speeds people drive next to the bike lane on Greeley, the dicey merge onto the I-5 on-ramp, or the Larrabee squeeze on North Interstate, the mayor did subject himself to the construction zone conditions currently plaguing the Broadway Bridge. Scaffolding for a major re-painting project has narrowed the bridge path to only four feet or so and we’ve gotten a lot of complaints from riders who think it’s less safe than it should be. Hales managed it without incident and thanked the work crew flaggers as we went by.

As we rolled down Broadway into Portland I tried to impressed upon the mayor that Broadway could — and should! — be our city’s marquee bikeway. It bisects the central city and already handles some of the highest volumes of bicycle ridership anywhere. I mentioned how when former Mayor Sam Adams built our first protected bikeway up near Portland State University way back in 2008, the hope and intention was that it would be extended to Burnside, then to the Broadway Bridge, and ultimately into northeast neighborhoods (a project outlined in the BTA’s Blueprint plan).

I can’t resist peppering the mayor with my own ideas and hopes for the future; and I’m extremely grateful to have the opportunity to do it while we’re both biking through the city on our way to work.

I feel like this is a different Charlie Hales than we had those first two years. Actually, it’s the same Charlie, just in a different political context. Regardless, he’s no longer afraid to put bicycling front and center when it makes sense to do so. And that’s a huge deal — not just for cycling — but for the future of our city.

I sincerely hope he keeps this up.

Mayor Hales bikes to work from Kenton-21.jpg

NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are productive, considerate, and welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Thank you — Jonathan

  • 9watts September 28, 2015 at 11:40 am

    Very promising!
    Glad you were there to document and pepper him with questions.

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    • 9watts September 28, 2015 at 11:43 am

      did anyone find out or ask him whether he biked to the coffee shop from his house in SE?

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      • Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) September 28, 2015 at 11:55 am

        I didn’t ask. I thought about it.. but I hate to make “Did you bike here?!” a litmus test as to whether or not someone is sufficiently badass as to pass the test of being a “real biker.” I know everyone has different schedules and abilities and I want folks to come to cycling from their own terms without feeling like they have to be hardcore in order to pass muster.

        Keep in mind that from his house in Eastmoreland, the mayor would have had to leave at 6:45 am or so to make it to kenton by 7:45 (about 11 miles).

        (And FWIW I’m pretty sure he did not bike to Kenton, because his staffer Chad Stover did bike up from northwest and they seemed quite impressed with him for doing so.)

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      • Ben Funkhouser September 28, 2015 at 11:57 am

        Looks like he took the MAX:


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        • 9watts September 28, 2015 at 11:59 am

          MAX – brilliant solution.

          And I didn’t mean it as a litmus test; I was just curious. Since we’ve seen folks here with monster bike commutes I didn’t want to rule anything out; you know – credit where credit is due.

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          • Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) September 28, 2015 at 12:10 pm

            gotcha 9watts. Thanks. I didn’t mean my reply to be argumentative or assuming of your perspective.

            And glad to hear he took the MAX! Thanks for sharing that Ben.

            Fun footnote… Charlie Hales’ signed his name in the concrete of the Interstate Yellow Line at Interstate and Rosa Parks during the ribbon-cutting back in 2004 or so — about 20 yards from where we biked by this morning.

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        • Adam Herstein September 28, 2015 at 12:04 pm

          That’s fine. As long as he didn’t drive his bike there.

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          • Eric Leifsdad September 28, 2015 at 2:54 pm

            That would be ok with me, but he would have to acknowledge that saving 30-40 minutes driving vs riding the MAX says something about our transit options. In this case, he started a short bike ride from the MAX and would have needed to ride uphill in the evening to retrieve his car (which would include a taste of N Williams?) As fact-finding goes, experiencing the new orange line might be just as useful overall. I’m undecided on whether I expect him to take the lane across Sellwood, down Macadam and climb 500ft alone to meet us in SW.

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  • Matt September 28, 2015 at 11:45 am

    Despite my better judgement, I take Greeley almost everyday. It’s real fast, but man is it unsafe. It would be nice if the bike lane was elevated or separated. Seems like there is a bit of available land to make that happen.

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    • TJ September 28, 2015 at 2:46 pm

      In the works: http://npgreenway.org/ The city is doing a feasibility study of various routes through Albina yards or maybe the possibility of a track on the east side.

      Personally, I get shamefully annoyed with the closer-in improvements or even discussions of deep east Portland, when we have such low hanging fruit with Greeley. It’s a bit silly, the preferred safe route to inner NE/SE/Pearl/downtown for those bluff-side of Greeley is Williams/Vancouver or Interstate — both a considerable “detour”.

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    • Tom Hardy September 28, 2015 at 2:49 pm

      Greely hill is great! First time I took it on my bike was in March of 1953. At 8 years old I took the traffic lane. Only thing we did not have then was the I-5 entrance at Interstate. We had rails on Interstate but they were not separated and were past Russel. The interchange On interstate between Interstate and the road toward the Steel Bridge was different as well as this was before Memorial Coluseum

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      • TJ September 28, 2015 at 3:19 pm

        I’m a pretty confident rider, often keeping to the left lane at speed in the morning until I ensure the merge past Swan Island is clear — this is a sketch move should I have a mechanical or just misjudge. When possible I’ll merge back across the lanes to up toward Interstate. For me this is not great. For the average to newer rider, Greeley is confusing at best and terrifying at worse. It’s difficult to judge the speed of traffic coming-off Swan Island — not all new riders are quick to find their pedals and start moving. The cross back at the bottom of the hill can be a dangerous game of read the drivers mind: left lane, no turn signal, but is he meaning to go for I5?

        Even with improvements at Interstate and Greeley, the stretch above is not much better.

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    • pdx2wheeler September 28, 2015 at 5:16 pm

      Greeley going South is my daily commute route. One tip, as you ride across the Going overpass look West and note which vehicles are taking the Greeley exit from Going. That way you know what to expect when you to reach the end of the bike lane and are forced to merge over to the right and have to cross that lane of traffic. Once you get the hang of it you’ll know exactly what’s coming and can adjust your speed accordingly to avoid conflicts.

      The crossing further south on Greeley, that crosses the lane of vehicles merging onto I-5, is usually safe but recently ODOT has been using the bike lane as traffic cone storage and forcing bikes directly onto Greeley prematurely, which is ultra-dangerous! Mixing with freight traffic going 45+ is so not cool. I’ve called out ODOT 4 times, using Twitter, and they’ve always quickly fixed the issue. The problem is the ODOT contractors, they seem to have very little regard for bike lanes and love to use them for personal storage of their “safety” equipment by default. The traffic cones go away for a while, but they always seem to return… If you see something similar on your route send @OregonDOT a tweet, with a picture if possible. I’ve had good results.

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    • Blake September 30, 2015 at 11:10 am

      I ride Greeley and Interstate too and I’m trying to get improvements down by Larrabee and there are little steps since the letter I sent that was signed by 8 neighborhood associations on October 1, 2014). For example, the expansion joint repairs between Tillamook and Larrabee recently was something PBOT said they would do that they have delivered. There’s still more work to be done, and I hope that the political climate changing will lead to there being more money for projects that improve tricky and dangerous spots that are needed connections.

      I was disappointed not to be able to make it on Monday but glad the Mayor is out there listening and getting 1st hand experience! If he wants to go back and ride through the Interstate pinch point, he should ask Leah Treat to give him the rundown because I think she rides through that section occasionally.

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  • Scott H September 28, 2015 at 11:46 am

    Yeah Buddy!!

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  • Alexis September 28, 2015 at 11:50 am

    While I share your frustration about the construction on the Broadway bridge, I was SO GLAD to see flaggers this morning. The narrowed sidewalk and single-side closures have created an unsafe, antagonistic environment.

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  • Todd Hudson September 28, 2015 at 11:50 am

    Serious question: does he ever bike *home* or without a bunch of activists/staffers surrounding him?

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  • Eric Leifsdad September 28, 2015 at 11:51 am


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  • Todd Boulanger September 28, 2015 at 11:51 am

    …as for the Mayor’s handlers protecting him from city streets with poor bicycling conditions, sadly its in the handler’s interest to insulate the Mayor from any of these potential risks…it makes sense from their own perspective…as they have a lot of professional interest invested in the mayor they serve. (Much as what the former Mayor Sam Adams did for his Mayor Katz when he was a staffer.)

    Any mayor has to balance this out with his/ her own fact finding and escaping a life in the protected “limo bubble”.

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  • Charles Ross September 28, 2015 at 11:54 am

    I wish I had been at this early morning meeting in Kenton. Among other thoughts I would have suggested that more sweeps and less space for the homeless. Less tolerance from city hall for the crap behavior seen on the streets; more adherence to the letter of the law re: aggressive begging, street ‘floundering’ and the general sloppiness seen on the pavement: half eaten food, dirty clothing, doorways that stink to high hell. I would have asked who, exactly, is behind the rampant theft of, out of, from bicycles and cars.
    Are scant resources really reaching that core group of homeless who truly have physical/mental disability?
    Have we transformed ‘homelessness’ into an institution, an acceptable occupation rather than a problem to be confronted and solved?
    Homelessness, by it’s very nature, is an undignified state to be in but that doesn’t mean that the homeless need to act in an undignified manner.
    Too many do just that.

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  • Paul Hanrahan September 28, 2015 at 12:00 pm

    Imo, Hales is biking because there is an election coming and he has some serious competition on the horizon.

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    • Charley September 28, 2015 at 12:31 pm

      That’s totally possible and totally fine in my book. Cyclists make up a voting bloc in this city, and pandering to voters with symbols is more than tangentially related to actually getting results for those voters. I think if he’s paying attention, we’re benefitting. At least, as a mountain bike rider, I’m already aware of what he’s doing to help us cyclists.

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    • Shannon September 28, 2015 at 1:41 pm

      Agreed. One does not have to be a cynic to notice that Ted Wheeler’s well-anticipated entry into the race has sparked some new action from Charlie.

      It’s a great reminder that we (cyclists) – if organized and activated – are a voting block. Let us be a voting block! (One that our local politicians need to pander to.) And let us be a voting block with good memory. (Amanda Fritz, I am remembering).

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      • Alex Reed September 29, 2015 at 5:11 am

        Yeah – we remember that Council cut bike/walk funding to the bone in Hales’ first two years of office and has yet to allocate sufficient funds to even get us back to where we were before Hales took office.

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      • invisiblebikes September 29, 2015 at 12:52 pm

        Plus 1 for Amanda Fritz that is one politician that needs to be ousted!

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  • Alexandra September 28, 2015 at 12:08 pm

    I’m curious to know if there are a lot of bike accidents on Greeley. I bike here (almost) everyday from Overlook to SW PDX, and though traffic is fast and there are some strange merging areas, I definitely find it safer than many other places to bike in Portland. However, I know many bikers who do not like to take Greeley, and I get that biking next to speeding cars is not everyone’s bag.

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    • Adam September 28, 2015 at 2:50 pm

      I agree, it doesn’t really feel that dangerous, the general traffic lanes are nice and wide, and most of the time the drivers of the motor vehicles move over to the left side of the lane. But it does suck feeling a semi fly by at 50mph 4 feet from you.

      I’d feel better if they put some sort of “protection” on the inside of the curves where the vehicles have worn away the bike lane paint (though it was just recently repainted). Flex posts would get destroyed, but some armadillos or every just some rumble strips would help rewire people to not cut into the bike lanes on the curves.

      The two merges across the car lanes do suck, I feel like they could add a cheap bike flyover ramp for the upper one, and maybe run the bike lane on the right side of the I-5 south on ramp until it hits Interstate.

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    • Chris I September 28, 2015 at 5:27 pm

      Risk analysis balances two main things: likelihood of occurrence, and consequences of occurrence. For roads like Greeley, we know that the likelihood is low, but the consequence is huge (most likely death). This is why these roads are uncomfortable. Areas with dense traffic but lower speeds are also uncomfortable, but for the opposite reason: higher likelihood of occurrence, but lesser consequences.

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  • Adam Herstein September 28, 2015 at 12:09 pm

    Our streets downtown are definitely not too narrow for protected bike lanes. Most are at least two lanes with parking. It’s just that the city is afraid to take space away from cars. In fact, the short blocks makes the grid even more redundant and easier to remove car access to an entire street.

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    • Tom Hardy September 28, 2015 at 2:56 pm

      Notice that when MAX (Not Trolly) is situated on a street. Just how many parking spaces are allowed?

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  • Terry D-M September 28, 2015 at 12:14 pm

    Next week he should try biking in from 122 nd and Halsey…..or at least Gateway. I might even get upearly to go to that one

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  • SD September 28, 2015 at 1:12 pm

    It would be nice if the mayor biked East on Lovejoy onto the Broadway bridge. I rode that route yesterday with my 12 yo. The number of orange signs directed at cyclists have proliferated and don’t really make sense in total. Two bikes use side walk in areas where it is unclear which sidewalk, bikes use steel bridge amidst the sidewalk signs, and I think there was a bikes yield to pedestrians thrown in on the north side of the bridge.

    Combining this with a mentally unstable man yelling at us that we were “demons” when we passed by him at walking speed on a narrow bridge path made for great teachable moments in urban cycling.

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  • RH September 28, 2015 at 1:23 pm

    This is great. Seems he’s biking from different quadrants of the city to his office. Gives him a good perspective on routes, etc… I can’t wait for the day when he simply bikes from his house to work without the coffeeshop meetups. That’s when he believes it a viable transit option!

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  • RushHourAlleycat September 28, 2015 at 1:27 pm

    No cars on the park blocks. Bike/Ped bridges linking Ñ & S
    Reverse the direction of Madison from Broadway to the Museum.
    Buffered bike lane from the steel bridge to hawthorn on 2nd.
    Other stuff I’m forgetting

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  • davemess September 28, 2015 at 1:27 pm

    “I feel like this is a different Charlie Hales than we had those first two years. Actually, it’s the same Charlie, just in a different political context. Regardless, he’s no longer afraid to put bicycling front and center when it makes sense to do so. And that’s a huge deal — not just for cycling — but for the future of our city.”

    I think I”m much more a cynic than you Jonathan. I think this is too little too late, and it just feels like he’s pandering to an area of the base that he has neglected for years (some might even argue antagonized at points).
    I just think he’s too multi-faced for me, too much of a politician.

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    • Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) September 28, 2015 at 1:34 pm

      I hear you davemess. And I agree! He has wasted a few years when he should have been building support for real reforms; but that’s not how things happened. I’d rather look ahead and believe that he, like most people, can evolve and learn and start to do the right things if they are given the chance to do so. He’s always going to be a politician and as such he’ll have to serve many masters. But I feel like he does truly understand transportation and he knows he needs to do more for biking and walking… He just needs to be put in the right political position to pull some triggers.

      Trust me, I’m not going to stop pushing him and I hope you and others don’t either.

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      • davemess September 28, 2015 at 1:40 pm

        Well I didn’t vote for him last time, and I’m doubtful to vote for him this time. And frankly his transportation policy is just in the middle of issues that I would care about from my mayor. I just can’t trust a guy who moved out of state, avoided taxes, and continued to vote here.

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        • Todd Hudson September 28, 2015 at 3:17 pm

          I only voted for him because his opponent was such a disaster of a human being, and didn’t feel like throwing my vote away on a write-in.

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  • Tony T
    Tony T September 28, 2015 at 2:01 pm

    “He made sure to put a foot down at the infamous Flint Avenue stop sign”

    What does this have to do with a stop sign? There is nothing in the law that says you need to put a foot down, and you can easily put your foot down and not actually stop. (I saw one newbie looking rider almost eat it because he awkwardly tried to do this while still moving)

    There is SO much misinformation about the legal requirements of riding a bike, and I have talked to several people who were under the impression that you need to put your foot down. This comment concerns me (mildly) because it reinforces this misconception.

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    • Tony T
      Tony T September 28, 2015 at 2:34 pm

      I’m sorry. That first sentence sounds pretty snarky and I didn’t mean to convey that. (My kingdom for an edit feature!)

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    • Tom Hardy September 28, 2015 at 2:59 pm

      It would have been better and safer if he had looked at possible interference traffic and spent less time at the intersection when he “Put his foot down”.

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    • Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) September 28, 2015 at 3:30 pm

      I hear your concerns Tony. I’m well aware of the law not requiring a foot down. I’ll edit that line as to not perpetuate that myth. cheers.

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  • Endo September 28, 2015 at 2:33 pm

    This mayor and probably every other candidate for mayor will pose with bikes and bicyclists right up until election day, and then all of the sudden the story will be “We can’t afford to do anything for you” just before the mayor drives away in his SUV. Don’t fall for bikewashing!

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  • Dwaine Dibbly September 28, 2015 at 2:36 pm

    Not sure exactly how to interpret this. Pandering? Maybe. Finally learning about the needs of the citizens of the city? Hopefully. It’s nice that he’s making it part of his Monday every week, at least, and not a one-time photo op.

    Great to hear about the Guild Theater!

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  • Mark September 28, 2015 at 3:09 pm

    Hey, I saw Vera Katz once. Sitting in the back seat of her chauffeured cop car with two officers in the front seat. Good to see Hales living like the rest of the folk..even if it’s for just a moment.

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  • mike owens September 28, 2015 at 3:54 pm

    Jonathan, would it be useful to list talking points here that are a summary of recommendations from our transportation advocacy groups that we could email to his office to help follow-up on key points you and others raise? A more coordinated effort?

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  • Lenny Anderson
    Lenny Anderson September 28, 2015 at 4:07 pm

    Vera Katz did not own a car and was a regular transit rider for many years.
    Before her Mayor Bud Clark rode his bike down from NW to city hall almost every day. Between them biking and alternatives to cars got a big boost from the foundations laid in the 70’s thanks to the infamous Goldschmidt and wonderful Ernie Bonner. Hales came in with Katz in ’92 and surprised us all with his commitment to transportation options. He definitely gets it; he gave Mia Birk the green light in the 90’s.
    We need to keep pushing to get a good alignment for the North Portland Willamette Greenway Trail between the Broadway Bridge and Swan Island. Done right it can be an alternative to Greeley for folks coming down past adidas as well as Swan Island bike commuters. UPRR is the key player here, along with Hales and Earl Blumenauer. The RR offered a piece of their ROW in exchange for trail advocates removing the Ash Grove Cement Road as their preferred alignment, and PBOT is now looking at what that would cost. Stay tuned.
    And we need an alternative to the Broadway Bridge. It could be a spectacular bike/ped bridge from Larrabee bluff (aka Grassy Knoll) that would swoop up for ship clearance and then down and over the RR tracks to somewhere around NW 9th to connect to the Park Block extension planned for the Post Office property south of Lovejoy. A true signature project!

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    • wsbob September 28, 2015 at 8:23 pm

      “Vera Katz did not own a car and was a regular transit rider for many years.
      Before her Mayor Bud Clark rode his bike down from NW to city hall almost every day. Between them biking and alternatives to cars got a big boost from the foundations laid in the 70’s thanks to the infamous Goldschmidt and wonderful Ernie Bonner. Hales came in with Katz in ’92 and surprised us all with his commitment to transportation options. He definitely gets it; he gave Mia Birk the green light in the 90’s. …” Lenny Anderson

      Lenny, thanks for the refresher. Some of the cynics here might be a little less quick to write off Hale’s interest in biking as being a simple political gimmick. Give the guy at least a little benefit of the doubt.

      As to how hard core a rider or commuting rider he could be, I dunno… . I was hoping he’d ride to work more than once a week, and some of those rides in the nasty cold wet weather we Oregonians somehow find a way to love.

      Get wet and still stay focused on traffic, avoid obstacles and hazards on slick streets and rails. Those conditions really draw on the need for a strong personal constitution. And if there’s ever a time when realization of the need for well designed city biking infrastructure can come to fore, it’s in those conditions. A mayor that knows all this first hand and is willing to take a lead in making improvements, could do a lot to bring about better conditions for biking.

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  • Mao September 28, 2015 at 4:15 pm

    I would have loved to hear that the Mayor road downed Interstate. Coasting down at 7:20 in the morning so fast my eyes tear up from the wind.
    I wonder if he was uncertain about going down that very part though. There are a few grates that could end badly if hit.

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  • Mark September 28, 2015 at 7:33 pm

    Chris I
    Risk analysis balances two main things: likelihood of occurrence, and consequences of occurrence. For roads like Greeley, we know that the likelihood is low, but the consequence is huge (most likely death). This is why these roads are uncomfortable. Areas with dense traffic but lower speeds are also uncomfortable, but for the opposite reason: higher likelihood of occurrence, but lesser consequences.Recommended 0

    I love high density, low speed. Much hooliganism ensues while cars sit going nowhere.

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  • Kevin Wagoner September 28, 2015 at 7:41 pm

    Excited to see him cycling and thanks for covering this. I sent him a note a while back when I heard he would start commuting and asked him to ride to work with me on Barber from SW Portland. I hadn’t heard back yet. If he won’t go down Greely I don’t imagine he will go down Barber. Fair enough, Barber is far from safe.

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  • Adam September 28, 2015 at 8:02 pm

    Super nice to see this! And I’m liking his Oregon bike helmet! Cool! Hope this continues. Let’s pick a coffee shop with the most hideous intersection between it and downtown next time, eh!

    The naturally cynical person in me is noting that it is a little bit convenient to see him make this push to ride a bike pretty much only after Ted Wheeler (who seems like a more bike-friendly opposition candidate to me) announced his candidacy for Mayor what, a month ago?

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  • Lester Burnham September 30, 2015 at 7:29 am

    It’s phony. If Hales was all that into bikes and catering to a small minority in this city, he would have rode his bike on day one at his new job as mayor.

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