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Regional Safe Routes program is one of many winners from Metro grants

Posted by on February 23rd, 2015 at 4:05 pm

Mayor Adams at Safe Routes to School ride-2
A Safe Routes to School event in Portland, 2010.
Other cities will get regional funding
for the programs thanks to new Metro grants.
(Photo: J.Maus/BikePortland)

With the federal government’s support for early biking education shrinking, the Portland area’s regional government is making a significant investment.

Safe Routes to School programs in Tigard, Beaverton and across the region are among the winners of $2.1 million in Metro grants announced Monday. Other highlights include a new active transportation staffer for Portland Community College, a bicycle tourism initiative in the Gresham area and continued support for the City of Portland’s marketing of biking, walking and public transit.

The $2.1 million in two-year grants were chosen from among $4.6 million requested by various nonprofits and government agencies around the region.


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Rare, $20,000 Specialized-McLaren road bike sold at local shop

Posted by on February 23rd, 2015 at 1:11 pm

The lean and mean S-Works McLaren in southeast Portland last week.
(Photo: River City Bicycles)

It’s not every day that a local shop builds up a $20,000 bike that was made in collaboration with a legendary auto racing company.


Industry Ticker: Zen Bicycle Fabrication launches in-house brand

Posted by on February 23rd, 2015 at 12:33 pm

The full line-up from ZEN Bike Co.

Zen Bicycle Fabrication, a bike frame manufacturer based in north Portland, has launched an in-house brand of bicycles under the Zen Bike Co. label.

Zen launched back in October 2011 and has found a niche for themselves by making production runs of frames for many other brands.


The Monday Roundup: Automatic lifesaving, handlebar cams and more

Posted by on February 23rd, 2015 at 9:08 am

The driver might not see, but the car does.
(Image: Jaguar)

Here are the great bike links from around the world that caught our eyes this week:

Automatic lifesaving: Street-scanning, self-braking technology is already saving lives. So why isn’t it required in every car yet?

Handlebar cam: The Fly12 is a combination headlight/video camera.


Swan Island transportation group may shut doors after Metro funding shifts

Posted by on February 21st, 2015 at 2:39 pm

    Daimler bike shelter opening-22
    Swan Island TMA Executive Director Sarah Angell cuts the ribbon in 2013 on a bike parking facility at Daimler Trucks North America. A Metro committee has recommended cutting funding for Angell’s 15-year-old advocacy and education organization.
    (Photos: J.Maus and M.Andersen/BikePortland)

    The densest major industrial park in Portland seems likely to lose its tiny transportation advocacy organization after a proposed funding shift from the Metro regional government.

    The Swan Island Transportation Management Association currently relies on Metro for 59 percent of its revenue, with businesses based in the North Portland industrial park providing the remainder. In a round of grants announced Friday, Metro cut all its funding for the Swan Island TMA as well as for the similar organizations in the Lloyd District and Washington Park.


Comment of the Week: A definitive wishlist for Portland’s bridges

Posted by on February 20th, 2015 at 4:17 pm

Last (and cold) sunrise of 2010-5
The Burnside’s bike lanes are OK;
it’s the landings that hold it back.
(Photo: J.Maus/BikePortland)

From afar, Portland’s bridges are civic treasures. Up close, they’re little slices of rural highway in the middle of the most beautiful part of the city.

To its credit, Multnomah County asked for ways to change this, and this week BikePortland readers certainly delivered — none more comprehensively and persuasively than reader MaxD, whose Tuesday morning comment on the subject picked up on points raised by many other readers.


Amtrak’s trains keep getting bike-friendlier, but its buses aren’t keeping up

Posted by on February 20th, 2015 at 12:36 pm

bikes on Amtrak bus
It’s sometimes possible to talk bikes onto an Amtrak
bus, but the variety of contractors is an obstacle.
(Photo: Mark Hogan)

As Amtrak invests in improving its trains to carry bikes, some customers are warning that Amtrak’s buses are falling behind.

The Amtrak Cascades line, between Eugene and Vancouver BC, is both one of the most-ridden regional rail lines in the country and maybe the bike-friendliest. For $5 on top of your fare, you can easily check an unboxed bike to most stops on the line and reclaim it like any other bit of luggage.

The service has been so popular that the hooks in Amtrak’s baggage cars started filling up. So two years ago, the Cascades added more hooks, boosting its bike capacity by 67 percent.


Weekend Event Guide: Dropout, trail work, time trial and more

Posted by on February 20th, 2015 at 8:19 am

Splash Dance Ride
Tall bikes are for everyone. Ride with freak bikes and the people who love them at the Dropout Bike Club ride tonight.
(Photo by J. Maus/BikePortland)

Welcome to your menu of weekend rides and events, lovingly brought to you by our friends at Hopworks Urban Brewery.

Looks like we’ve got another weekend of stellar weather ahead. Might as well take advantage of it with a bike ride right?

If you don’t already have something planned, perhaps we can entice you to one of the rides below. Whatever you do, have a great weekend!

Friday, February 20th

Dropout Bicycle Club Ride – 9:00 pm at Colonel Summers Park (SE 20th & Belmont)
Join the Dropouts for their monthly “freakbike social ride.” Show off your latest creation and/or check out what other two-wheeled creations other people have dreamed up. The ride will go late and you will have fun and/or an adventure. More info here.


Don’t let a state gas tax hike go straight into more freeways, activist warns

Posted by on February 20th, 2015 at 8:09 am

traffic on i-5 -1
If you build it…
(Photo: J.Maus/BikePortland)

Thursday on the political blog BlueOregon, veteran Portland transportation wonk Ron Buel warned Oregonians eager for a gas tax hike to be careful what they wish for.

Though there’s almost universal consensus among Oregon Democrats that human-caused global warming is a catastrophic threat to the state, Buel writes that

It’s also an article of Democratic Party faith in Oregon that our highway infrastructure needs to be built out at breakneck speed in order to deal with growing congestion on the state’s highways, so that our economy can thrive. The annual Oregon Business Summit, held earlier this year, attended by thousands of businessmen, and capturing our leading politicians of both parties to speak there, recently proclaimed this congestion as the state’s number one issue. The Democratic Party in Oregon seems led by the nose by unions who also love that argument, including particularly the building trades and the AFL-CIO, who are dying for these local union highway construction jobs that used to be so numerous but have virtually disappeared as people drive less and drive vehicles that use less gas per mile.


Jobs of the Week

Posted by on February 20th, 2015 at 7:34 am

We’ve had seven great job opportunities listed this week. Check them out via the links below…


ODOT is building its first complete wishlist of biking and walking projects

Posted by on February 19th, 2015 at 3:34 pm

east 82nd
82nd Avenue: a priority, but how high?
(Photo: Elly Blue)

As Oregon creates its first-ever comprehensive biking and walking wishlist, it’s run into a hard question: how should it rank the importance of the many projects on its list?

The question comes three years after a round of ODOT’s federal grant applications for Portland-area biking and walking projects came up completely empty. As the next federal grant deadline approaches, ODOT is hoping that by creating a more sophisticated system to choose its top projects — a complete sidewalk along 82nd Avenue, maybe, or a crosswalk beacon on North Lombard street — it won’t miss out on the next round of federal grants.


Bike riders can expect up to 20 minute delays at Sellwood Bridge through end of March – UPDATED

Posted by on February 19th, 2015 at 10:37 am

Major work on water lines as part of Sellwood Bridge project mean delays for bike riders and walkers of up to 20 minutes.
(Photo: Michael H.)

If you commute across the Sellwood Bridge, you might want to add an extra 20 minutes to your trip just to be safe.


NYC and DC advocates top the agenda at Oregon Active Transportation Summit

Posted by on February 19th, 2015 at 8:49 am

National Bike Summit - Day three-3
Paul Steely White at the
2009 National Bike Summit.
(Photo: J.Maus/BikePortland)

Paul Steely White, executive director of New York City’s Transportation Alternatives, is known in the biking advocacy world as a charmer who has been right in the middle of his city’s 15-year turnaround to become of the country’s leading cities for transportation innovation.

Melissa Wells is an up-and-coming transportation advocate for PolicyLink, a broad-based research institute that studies economic and social equity.

Next month, the pair will be in Portland keynoting the Oregon Active Transportation Summit. Organized by the Bicycle Transportation Alliance, the summit is the largest gathering of biking, walking, and transit advocates in the state.

Also on the three-day agenda: mobile workshops of Portland infrastructure and advocacy, a raft of breakout sessions with Oregon’s wealth of biking and walking pros and a pair of networking receptions, including an after-hours round of Pecha Kucha slideshows that I’ve been looking forward to for the last year.


Student energy will soon help power Glencoe Elementary, literally

Posted by on February 18th, 2015 at 3:35 pm

Two plug-in electric bikes donated this month to Southeast Portland’s Glencoe Elementary will introduce students to the concept of pedal-powered energy.


Housing and transportation advocates plan to pack hearing for affordability bill

Posted by on February 18th, 2015 at 9:09 am

SE Division street scene - photo by Michael Andersen
SE Division Street has a frequent bus, two parallel neighborhood greenways and many shops within walking distance — but prices in the area are so high that many residents own cars anyway.
(Photo: M.Andersen/BikePortland)

Oregon’s 20-year ban on a common affordable-housing policy could be headed for the dustbin, based on what happens after a hearing in Salem next Monday.

The policy, known as inclusionary zoning, would allow city governments to require that new buildings within certain areas include certain ratios of lower-rent housing units. Backers call it a useful tool for preventing desirable parts of town from becoming homogeneously wealthy.

Inclusionary zoning is entirely banned in two U.S. states: Oregon and Texas. House Bill 2564 would remove Oregon’s ban.


City announces 2015 Sunday Parkways: New route will cross Tilikum Bridge

Posted by on February 18th, 2015 at 7:00 am

Mark your calendars!
(Photo by J. Maus/BikePortland)

The Portland Bureau of Transportation will break new ground with its eighth annual Sunday Parkways events in 2015. PBOT announced this year’s five events today with an exciting new route in September that will venture through Sellwood neighborhoods and across the Tilikum Crossing Bridge just a few weeks after it’s slated to open for the first time.


London’s cycling czar swings through Portland for two events this week

Posted by on February 17th, 2015 at 3:19 pm

Ben Plowden.
(Photo: London Cycling Campaign)

After years of staring morosely at the world’s best bike cities just across the English Channel, London is on the brink of big changes. One of the people responsible is coming through Portland on his victory tour.

As director of surface transport strategy and planning for the regional Transport for London agency, Ben Plowden oversees almost everything on his city’s streets. In the 15 years since London regained regional autonomy, the city has introduced a hugely successful anti-congestion charge on cars entering the central city, one of the world’s first major modern bike sharing systems (now 10,000 bikes strong) and, two weeks ago, an 18-mile protected bike lane through the heart of central London.


A final photo essay from our week in SW Portland

Posted by on February 17th, 2015 at 1:46 pm

View from SW Barbur Blvd-1
If you can peel your eyes away from the debris-ridden bike lane and all the cars around you long enough, this is what you can see from SW Barbur Blvd.
(Photos by J. Maus/BikePortland)

I hope everyone enjoyed our coverage from Southwest Portland last week. We’re not done yet! We’ve got two more posts we’d like to share: The first is a wrap up photo essay from my final two days of observations and explorations. Then we’ll recap the week and share what we learned from the smart people who showed up to our Get Together social event Friday night.


Industry Ticker: Circa Cycles opens NW Portland Showroom

Posted by on February 17th, 2015 at 1:11 pm

Circa Print Select 07
Rich Fox outside his new showroom at 1720 NW Lovejoy Street.
(Photo courtesy Rich Fox)


PBOT will make changes to three Williams Ave bike lane trouble spots

Posted by on February 17th, 2015 at 10:29 am

Because of a bad design coupled with dangerous and illegal behavior by some road users,
PBOT will move the bike lane over and add a median island at Williams and Stanton.
(Photo by J. Maus/BikePortland)

The “three-year journey” (to use the City of Portland’s phrase) to make North Williams Avenue work better for cycling isn’t quite over yet.


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