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Guest Article: An update from ODOT on the Historic Columbia River Highway

Thursday, May 16th, 2013
A tour of the Historic Columbia River Highway
The Historic Columbia River Highway is a bicycling gem.
And it just keeps getting better.
(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)

This guest article was written by ODOT's Region 1 Transit and Active Transportation Liaison Jessica Horning and ODOT's Historic Columbia River Highway project coordinator Kristen Stallman.

The Historic Columbia River Highway is one of Oregon’s most popular and scenic destinations regardless of your preferred mode of travel. The 73-mile route from Troutdale to The Dalles provides amazing views of the best the Columbia River Gorge has to offer, from waterfalls to windswept high plains. The highway was constructed in 1913 with a maximum 5 percent grade, making it an ideal route for a long distance bike ride. The Historic Highway is also a designated scenic byway, making it a popular shared route for motorists and bicyclists alike.

In 2013, the Historic Highway will see improvements that will make this scenic gem more accessible, with more opportunities for visitors to enjoy the Gorge by foot, bike, and car.
(more...)

Guest Article: Urban mountain biking in Portland - What it could be

Thursday, May 2nd, 2013
Typical "flow" singletrack on the Beginner Trail in Lebanon Hills.
(Photo used with Permission of Dakota County Parks, Minnesota)

This article is written by Joshua Rebannack. Joshua contacted me after he read our recent coverage of mountain biking in Forest Park. As a way of helping Portland see a different vision for urban, off-road bicycling access, Joshua wanted to share how the issue has evolved in riding areas around Minneapolis, Minnesota. — Jonathan

My name is Joshua Rebennack. I'm a "Dirt Boss" at the Cuyuna Lakes Mountain Bike Trails and a member of the Cuyuna Lakes Mountain Bike Crew. I am writing this guest article in response to some of the controversy surrounding the possible inclusion of mountain biking at Forest Park.

Below I'll discuss an example trail in an urban setting, Lebanon Hills Regional Park in Eagan, Minnesota, and the lessons the citizens of Portland can learn from it.

While it might seem an odd choice comparing a West Coast location with Midwest, there are more similarities than one might think. Both Portland and Twin Cities (including Eagan) are at similar latitudes. While Portland prides itself on its rainfall, actually, the Twin Cities receives somewhat similar amounts of precipitation, though far more of it in snow. They both have similar political climates. And both are biking hot- spots. (more...)

Guest Article: PBOT must guarantee sidewalk funding

Monday, March 11th, 2013
The street outside Morgan Maynard-Cook's house.

This article was written by Steve Bozzone, Vice-President of the Oregon Walks board of directors.

Recently sidewalks and crosswalks are on everyone’s radar, but for a tragic reason. In a part of Portland that has precious few of either, 5-year old Morgan Maynard-Cook was struck down last week in the simple act of crossing a street.

Quite rightly, a lot of the public outcry surrounding Morgan’s death has to do with how much of her life would have been ahead of her. Regardless of our professional work, we are also mothers and fathers, aunts, uncles, and cousins. Trying to imagine what Morgan's family and friends are going through right now is almost beyond bearing.
(more...)

Guest Article: Life on a Former Future Freeway

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2011
Riding on SE 52nd Ave., along the route once slated for a major freeway and which is now planned to become part of the 50s Bikeway.
(Photo © J. Maus)

(more...)

Guest Article: 'Peer to peer' car-sharing and its potential in Oregon

Thursday, October 14th, 2010

— This article was written by Portlander Steve Gutmann. He works for the Portland Sustainability Institute and formerly worked for EcoSecurities and Flexcar.

BikeStation Long Beach-6.jpg
(Photo © J. Maus)

On September 29th, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed legislation that will — for the first time — allow individuals in California to have their personal cars become car-sharing vehicles without invalidating their personal auto insurance. This legislation clears the way for “peer to peer,” (P2P) or personal vehicle car-sharing in California, and a similar effort is underway here in Oregon. This could dramatically accelerate the already rapid growth of car-sharing nationwide.

But why should you (a bike-riding audience) care? (more...)

Guest Article: Buddies, beers, and bikes along the Oregon Coast

Monday, August 30th, 2010

[Longtime BikePortland reader John Beaston recently completed a bike tour with some friends along the Oregon Coast. I asked him to share a few photos and a brief recap about what they did along the way. Please note: Since this ride combined bicycling and beer drinking, I asked Beaston to explain how they made sure there was no pedaling under the influence. He said they had a designated support van the entire way and all brewery stops were scheduled at dinner, so no riding was done after imbibing.]

The group at Seaside.
John Beaston is second from right.

Back in 2002, a friend and I did the Oregon Coast Bike Route. After we got home we told all of our beer buddies about what a great experience it was; a pitcher later and we had concocted the 2010 Oregon Coast Brewery to Brewery Bike Tour -- a 7-day, van-supported jaunt from Astoria to Brookings taking in the scenery and stopping at all seven coastal breweries.

We just returned and here's a combo beer and road report...

Breweries (see full list below)
The good: Those seven breweries are creating some fantastic beers. Ft George Brewing in Astoria and Wakonda Brewing in Florence were our favorites places. Wakonda's Imperial Pilsner was our standout beer.
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Guest article: Challenging conditions test bike commuter 'tolerance'

Thursday, July 8th, 2010

The article below was written by reader Paul Manson in response to my recent story on how construction at the E Burnside/12th/Sandy intersection is impacting the bicycling experience on SE Ankeny, a nearby bike boulevard street.

Paul is an environmental and sustainability consultant and also serves as a volunteer on the Sullivan's Gulch Trail Committee and as an alternate citizen representative for Multnomah County on the Metro Policy Advisory Committee.


(more...)

Guest Article: Another big idea: Make driving less convenient

Thursday, June 10th, 2010

[The following article was written by new executive director of the Bicycle Transportation Alliance, Rob Sadowsky.]


Another big idea

"To make a significant dent in bicycling mode share in Portland...we need to take significant steps to limiting the convenience of driving a car."

I was excited to read the various 'Big Ideas' submitted to BikePortland, even my favorite -- the giant slide down Mt. Hood. To make a significant dent in bicycling mode share in Portland, and in the region, we need not only big bold infrastructure ideas, but we need to take significant steps to limiting the convenience of driving a car. (more...)

Guest article: PBOT responds to Williams Avenue opportunity

Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010

[Publisher's note: In a story last week I hoped out loud that City of Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) would seize the opportunity to re-stripe Williams Avenue north of Broadway with a wider bike lane. The road is currently torn up for a repave, so what better time to try and eke out an extra foot or two for bikes? PBOT got in touch with me after reading that story and requested to write a guest article about the situation. I agreed and I've published the piece in its entirety below. I've put some of the most important bits in bold.]


Williams Avenue torn up-12
Williams is currently torn up.
When it gets re-striped, the bike lane
will likely be one foot wider.
(Photo © J. Maus)

A BikePortland headline from May 27 asked, “Williams Ave getting repaved: Can we get a wider bike lane?” We are writing today with an answer: Yes. And not only can Portlanders get a wider bike lane on North Williams, but they probably will get one in the next month and may get something better in the next year. (more...)

Guest Article: Oil, coal, and thoughts on a fossil-fuel conscious life

Monday, May 3rd, 2010
Sarah Gilbert
(Photo: Amy McMullen)

[This article was written by Portland resident Sarah Gilbert, a professional writer who blogs at AOL's Daily Finance, CafeMama.com, and many other places. She's also known as the woman who got a local food chain to open up their drive-thrus to bicycles. When not writing, Gilbert is tending to her three young boys, whom she pedals around on her Xtracycle-equipped Electra Townie with a "One Less Minivan" sticker on it.]

"I no longer feel I must defend my choice to go by bike instead of car; instead, I feel I must hold it high, a banner of hope and, perhaps, victory over these heart-clogging disasters."

(more...)

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