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Comment of the Week

Comment of the Week: The slow, possible work of progress

Friday, October 24th, 2014
Morrison Bridge bike-walk path dedication event-24
Ahh – can you feel that? That’s a successful
postcard campaign from 15 years ago.
(Photo: J.Maus/BikePortland)

There’s nothing new under the sun, but effective political tactics have a way of staying effective.

That’s what reader and legendary bike advocate Phil Goff observed this week in a comment beneath Tuesday’s post about a series of postcard campaigns by activist group Bike Loud PDX:

This is exactly what I did 15-16 years ago to create the political pressure to bring in funding for the Morrison Bridge sidepath project. On two occasions, I had 300-400 signed postcards mailed to Multnomah County Chair Bev Stein (to get the County’s attention) and then 6 mo later to Metro Council chair Rod Monroe during the MTIP process. In the age of e-mail, Twitter and FB, a simple postcard campaign can pack a lot of punch. Its great to hear that advocates are reviving the tactic for other projects. Good luck BikeLoudPDX!

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Comment of the Week: The decline of ageism in biking

Friday, October 17th, 2014
Sunday Parkways North Portland 2014-6
(Photo by J. Maus/BikePortland)

It was once true that people who bike and like bikes were mostly young. News flash: this is no longer true.

That was the message of reader Anne Hawley, responding this week to our coverage of a Northwest Examiner newspaper article about a white-haired auto repair shop owner named Frank Warrens who sees a bike lane on Northwest Everett as part of a campaign to ban cars from downtown Portland.

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Comment of the Week: For this rider, driving is a necessity

Friday, October 10th, 2014
2490690324_945b8c7214_z
(Photo: Amanda)

Even in Portland, people who bike more than they drive are a pretty small minority.

What sets us apart, in fact, might actually be the percentage of Portlanders who drive while wishing they were on a bike.

In a comment beneath our post about a road diet on Burnside that probably improved safety at a cost to fast driving (but might have also made biking less convenient), reader Edwards shared some compelling thoughts from the perspective of someone who loves to bike but also needs, at least for the moment, to drive.

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Comment of the Week: The Four Types of Bikeways

Friday, September 26th, 2014
I-205 Path Ride - Pedalpalooza-30
Which type?
(Photo: J.Maus/BikePortland)

Most BikePortlanders probably know the Four Types of Bicyclists, a concept sketched out by Portland’s bicycle planning coordinator, outed on this site eight years ago, and road-tested by a Portland State University professor in 2012.

But what if we turned this concept on its head and divided the bikeways of the world into four types, too?

That’s the intriguing idea from reader “Alan 1.0,” who speculated in a comment this morning that 60 percent of Portland bike routes work for “strong and fearless” bikers while about 1 percent of Portland bike routes work for just about everybody.

Here’s his comment:
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Comment of the Week: The missed opportunity of Tilikum Crossing

Friday, September 19th, 2014
20140917_MaxTilikumDocJPG
Problems with the west-side landing of Tilikum Crossing.
(Image: Ted Buehler)

The new transit/bike/walk bridge opening across the Willamette next year has become one of Portland’s go-to examples of how we continue to do great things. And it’s certainly true that it’s a massive investment in active transportation.

But as reader Ted Buehler argued in a series of comments this week below our story about the apparent decline of biking among PSU students, Tilikum Crossing was so close to being so much better.

The Tilikum Bridge isn’t going to help all that much, because Tilikum to PSU will still be crap. Whereas MAX has a long flyover from the west end of the Tilikum Bridge to SW 4th and Lincoln.

If they had funded a mixed use path on the MAX bridge, you’d be able to go straight from OMSI to here: http://goo.gl/maps/LLiVp without playing fender tag with cars on surface streets.

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Comment of the Week: Making Beaverton the country’s #1 biking suburb

Friday, September 5th, 2014
Beaverton to Tualatin ride-3
Can you see the potential? No, seriously.
(Photo: J.Maus/BikePortland)

One of the frustrating facts of life at BikePortland is that we’ve never had time to cover the big Clark and Washington County suburbs nearly as much as we’d like. But if you bike in Washington County and haven’t followed the comments beneath this week’s Washington County post, you’ve been missing out.

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Comment of the Week: A little perspective on city rankings

Friday, August 29th, 2014

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.

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Comment of the Week: A good review for Director Treat

Friday, August 22nd, 2014
Street fee press conference-2
Transportation Director Leah Treat at a city
press conference in April.
(Photo: J.Maus/BikePortland)

Like her predecessor Tom Miller, Portland’s top transportation bureaucrat is part of a class of bike-friendly Generation Xers who, after working up the ladder for years, are moving into the top perches of government.

Hired last year, Director Leah Treat turned out to be the first of three such faces on the West Coast alone. Last month, Seleta Reynolds of San Francisco’s livable streets division was tapped to lead the vast Los Angeles transportation department and Scott Kubly, who like Treat was a top lieutenant to fellow Xer Gabe Klein in Washington and Chicago, was named to the same role in Seattle.

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Comment of the Week: How self-driving cars are actually going to work

Friday, August 15th, 2014
early-vehicle-lores
(Photo: Google)

Two big issues, gender in the bike world and the nature of Portland bike activism, generated lots of excellent perspectives from readers on the site this week. This one about the “thousand cuts” of being a woman was one of our most upvoted ever; this one early this morning about the recent history of Portland-centric bicycle advocacy groups is very persuasive.

But let’s finish the week on a lighter note, thanks to reader Jake.

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Comment of the week: ‘The stream carves its own bed’

Friday, August 8th, 2014
A ride with the family-6
Civic action in its own way.
(Photo by J. Maus/BikePortland)

If any new phrase about biking I’ve seen in the last few months deserves to become a cliche, it’s this one.

Reacting to our post about what would happen if all of Portland’s bike commuters switched to cars, reader Champs took another tack.

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