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  #1  
Old 08-30-2011, 07:21 AM
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K'Tesh K'Tesh is offline
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Default Tigard's Bike Lane Improvements...

I've been spending a lot of time in Tigard recently. As such, I've been encountering Mike McCarthy a lot.

In the past I complained about problems with the abrupt end of the bike lane on the EB lane of SW Durham Road, just before the SW Hall/SW 85th intersection. Motorists were crowding me, and although I saw that there was a narrowing of the road there, I could clearly see that there was enough space for a reduced width bike lane, that would rapidly expand to the standard width past a tree that the city protected.



A few weeks ago, I ran into Mike, and he was marking out the bike lane. While I had his attention, I pointed out the sunken storm drain catchbasin (or Black Hole Catchbasin as I call them) that was right there too. I explained the problems that cyclists have with them (especially at night or in bad weather). He decided to try marking some of them.



Yesterday, I noticed that the bike lane was installed, and so were some of the grate markings.



Mike also told me that Tigard is raising several catchbasins in area where they are repaving to prevent "Black Holes".

Thanks Mike, Thanks Tigard!
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Old 08-30-2011, 08:37 AM
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Haven_kd7yct Haven_kd7yct is offline
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Speaking of bike lane work---

Over on Tiedeman, they have installed a bike lane on the side of the road opposite the school grounds. There is a curb-side parking lane, then a bike lane, then the car lane. The parking lane stops just before the Fanno Creek Trail entrance, and the bike lane stops at the next street (SW Meadow). I have not been through there in the evenings when there are a lot of cars parked there, only in the mornings when there are no cars.

The bad news: On the school-side of the street, after the FCT crosswalk, they are removing the bike lane to install a parking lane because, as was told to me, "People park there all the time anyway, so there's obviously a need for it." Personally, I think there's a need for Tigard to pad its coffers by ticketing the people parking in the bike lane, but that's obviously only my opinion.

I have requested to Mike that the City install "Bike on roadway" signs and sharrows from the crosswalk intermittently all the way up to the right turn onto Walnut. We'll see what happens, but my next of kin is well aware of the situation and is prepared to take action in case I am injured or worse by impatient drivers.

I've been through there by bike quite a lot on my commute, and it appears that at my slowest I average about 10mph and at my fastest, 15mph. The road is signed for 25, and cars frequently go 30+ (even during the school year with the 20mph beacons flashing). The discrepancy in speeds is significant.

This could be a dangerous place to ride, but my other options are riding Walnut or Gaarde, both higher speed and higher volume roads-- with steep hills.

Sigh. It feels like one step forward, one step backward.

Pictures on my flikr page, thusly: http://flic.kr/p/ahMXpY from last night; http://flic.kr/p/adCsYQ from 8/15/11, both taken around 5:40PM on my evening commute. http://flic.kr/p/ahKfyT shows the no parking sign still posted.

Last edited by Haven_kd7yct; 08-30-2011 at 08:49 AM. Reason: added picture links, couldn't figure out how to add pictures though.
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Old 08-30-2011, 06:52 PM
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"... The bad news: On the school-side of the street, after the FCT crosswalk, they are removing the bike lane to install a parking lane because, as was told to me, "People park there all the time anyway, so there's obviously a need for it." ..." Haven_kd7yct

The way this reads, it's people needing parking for school business that have been parking in the bike lane. If there's a need for additional school related parking, the school should be urged to provide that on its property. Taking out a bike lane that's located on the street adjacent to a school...if that is what's occurring..., and replacing it with street parking seems the exact opposite of what should be done.

Kids and their parents might kind of like having the relative safety of a bike lane past the school for their kids to ride on, instead of them and all other people on bikes being obliged to ride in the main lane of traffic.


Re; the unconventional sunken catch basin marking on Durham Rd: hard to know without riding it, but the slanted white line looks as though it could help. Perhaps an additional series of two or three additional slanted white lines in 10' successive increments further back from the present one in advance of the catch basin would be more effective.

Last edited by wsbob; 08-30-2011 at 11:20 PM.
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Old 08-30-2011, 10:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Haven_kd7yct View Post
Speaking of bike lane work---

Over on Tiedeman, they have installed a bike lane on the side of the road opposite the school grounds. There is a curb-side parking lane, then a bike lane, then the car lane. The parking lane stops just before the Fanno Creek Trail entrance, and the bike lane stops at the next street (SW Meadow). I have not been through there in the evenings when there are a lot of cars parked there, only in the mornings when there are no cars.

The bad news: On the school-side of the street, after the FCT crosswalk, they are removing the bike lane to install a parking lane because, as was told to me, "People park there all the time anyway, so there's obviously a need for it." Personally, I think there's a need for Tigard to pad its coffers by ticketing the people parking in the bike lane, but that's obviously only my opinion.

I have requested to Mike that the City install "Bike on roadway" signs and sharrows from the crosswalk intermittently all the way up to the right turn onto Walnut. We'll see what happens, but my next of kin is well aware of the situation and is prepared to take action in case I am injured or worse by impatient drivers.

I've been through there by bike quite a lot on my commute, and it appears that at my slowest I average about 10mph and at my fastest, 15mph. The road is signed for 25, and cars frequently go 30+ (even during the school year with the 20mph beacons flashing). The discrepancy in speeds is significant.

This could be a dangerous place to ride, but my other options are riding Walnut or Gaarde, both higher speed and higher volume roads-- with steep hills.

Sigh. It feels like one step forward, one step backward.

Pictures on my flikr page, thusly: http://flic.kr/p/ahMXpY from last night; http://flic.kr/p/adCsYQ from 8/15/11, both taken around 5:40PM on my evening commute. http://flic.kr/p/ahKfyT shows the no parking sign still posted.


I don't ride Tiedeman all that often, except to cross it on the FCT (more often, I'll turn at SW Tigard, and ride that into downtown). I'd call the Non-Emergency line (503) 629-0111 and report any violations I see. There is no excuse for motorists to park in a bike lane like that.

Haven, I hope you don't mind that I added the images that you provided w/the links.
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Last edited by K'Tesh; 08-30-2011 at 10:36 PM.
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  #5  
Old 08-31-2011, 08:16 AM
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Haven_kd7yct Haven_kd7yct is offline
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No problem, K'tesh!

I went through there yesterday evening on my way home and the city has removed the no parking signs and ground up the bike lane markings, so it's now a parking lane.

The city plans on putting one (1???!!!) sharrow in just after the crosswalk. I don't know if they plan on putting any signs up about bikes being on the roadway, or alerting people on bikes that their bike lane has ended.

The city's take on it is that kids can ride on the sidewalk, since most of them riding/walking to school are coming off the FCT and are already on the sidewalk. So, yeah, that doesn't do anything for the rest of us, who are just trying to get home from work....

We'll see how it is during the school year; for now, if there aren't any cars parked there I'm going to use it as an extra wide bike lane.

Last edited by K'Tesh; 08-31-2011 at 09:14 AM. Reason: fixed sad smilie
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  #6  
Old 08-31-2011, 09:28 AM
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It is sad to see cycling infrastructure disappear. The only bright side is that you have every reason to become traffic instead. When you get into areas where cars tend to congregate, it is probably safer anyway. But this is a giant step backwards and deserves a litte attention. Anyone have the hotline to the local media?
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Old 08-31-2011, 10:17 AM
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I don't ride Tiedeman regularly either, but I have ridden it. I'm assuming Thomas Fowler Jr. is the school mentioned, on the corner of Tideman and Walnut. I last came to ride the road because I'd ridden the Fanno Creek trail and exited, I believe onto Tideman, wanting to ride towards Pacific Hwy. It seemed to me this street would be a common route for bike traffic traveling to and from the creek trail.

The way I remember motor vehicle traffic on Tiedeman, is that it was very fast and frantic. Motor vehicle users appeared to be using it as a cut-through to some other destination. Because of the use of the street by bike traffic to and from the park and other uses by bike traffic, the bike lane would seem to be needed on this street. Further details about the process by which the city came to conclude the bike lane passing by the school was expendable would be helpful.

I'd like to hear learn more about how the city of Tigard came to decide that eliminating this section of the bike lane was warranted and reasonable. Did the city conduct a count of road users on this section of the road, noting their mode of travel, establishing that there wasn't sufficient use of the bike lane to justify its continuation? The city traffic engineer most likely was involved in this decision, and would have some information about the city's process in making the decision to remove the bike lane for motor vehicle parking.
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Old 08-31-2011, 04:06 PM
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While I have to admit I have never attended a Tigard City Council or planning board meeting (I live just outside the Tigard city limits), it is pretty clear they still trail pretty much every other city in the metro area in terms of understanding bicycle facilities. It's always like someone told them they should have bicycle facilities, so they try and do something, but they don't bother to find out what is actually needed and they don't view it as any kind of priority.

One of my pet peeves - they just repainted the bike lane stripes on 135th Ave south of Walnut. This street has at least a 15% grade; it probably sees a couple of cyclists a week tops. The bike lanes don't have No Parking signs, so people do park in them. Going up I don't use the lane because any gravel when I'm pushing the pedals that hard and going that slow could cause me to fall. Going down I'm on the brakes to stay under the 25MPH speed limit and in any case I'm not going to ride that close to the edge of the road at that speed so I'm taking the lane. A total waste of paint, but this is the third time I've seen those stripes repainted.
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Old 08-31-2011, 05:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveT View Post
While I have to admit I have never attended a Tigard City Council or planning board meeting (I live just outside the Tigard city limits), it is pretty clear they still trail pretty much every other city in the metro area in terms of understanding bicycle facilities. It's always like someone told them they should have bicycle facilities, so they try and do something, but they don't bother to find out what is actually needed and they don't view it as any kind of priority.

One of my pet peeves - they just repainted the bike lane stripes on 135th Ave south of Walnut. This street has at least a 15% grade; it probably sees a couple of cyclists a week tops. The bike lanes don't have No Parking signs, so people do park in them. Going up I don't use the lane because any gravel when I'm pushing the pedals that hard and going that slow could cause me to fall. Going down I'm on the brakes to stay under the 25MPH speed limit and in any case I'm not going to ride that close to the edge of the road at that speed so I'm taking the lane. A total waste of paint, but this is the third time I've seen those stripes repainted.

Given your experience riding a bike on Walnut and other roads in Tigard, what kinds of things might you suggest the city consider doing that would be better than what they do currently?

With the gravel problem you mentioned here:

"...Going up I don't use the lane because any gravel when I'm pushing the pedals that hard and going that slow could cause me to fall. ..." DaveT

...sounds as though what the city should be doing, is sweeping the road a little more regularly so people like yourself would find it safe and practical to ride in the bike lane. If the gravel you're finding on Walnut is left over from last winter's ice and snow episodes, that should have been swept up long ago.
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Old 09-01-2011, 07:30 AM
DaveT DaveT is offline
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The point I was trying to make was that putting bike lanes on 135th was not useful and a waste of city resources, while areas that really need bike lanes go without (or even have them removed as in the original post). To an outside observer it appears there is a lack of understanding about what facilities are needed and will be used. If I lived in Tigard I would have the right and responsibility to try and help out with those decisions; since I live outside Tigard (but have to bike through Tigard to get just about anywhere) all I can do is whine
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