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In $21 million lawsuit, hit-and-run victim calls out dangerous stretch of N Interstate

Friday, June 12th, 2015
Mike Cooley, shown here ready to head out on his
daily bike commute before his 2013 collision.
(Photos courtesy Lisa Cooley)

A man whose legs were paralyzed in an unsolved 2013 hit-and-run on Interstate Avenue has sued the city, state and regional transit agency for $21 million.

Mike Cooley’s wife Lori, who is also a plaintiff in the lawsuit, told us in a May interview that she’s motivated in part by the lack of changes to Interstate Avenue’s bike lanes despite years of serious collisions on the street.

“Something has to be done to make that road safer or just shut it down for bikes,” Lori Cooley said. “There’s just too many injuries there.”

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Rodney Avenue neighborhood greenway gets open house next week

Thursday, March 26th, 2015
New traffic diverter at Rodney and Ivy-2
NE Rodney at Ivy.
(Photos: J.Maus/BikePortland)

Rodney Avenue, already a decent low-stress alternative to the Vancouver-Williams couplet, is lined up for an upgrade to full neighborhood greenway status.

At an open house next Wednesday evening, the Portland Bureau of Transportation will be asking people for their thoughts on the plans.

To make the route comfortable for all riders, the city will need to find good ways to help people navigate two jogs in the street grid, at NE Alberta and NE Fremont (pictured below).

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With new leadership curriculum, CCC thinks broader about its community work

Wednesday, September 10th, 2014
Take Back the Streets
North Portland organizer Jason Washington and
Outgoing Community Cycling Center Systems Builder Ilaoa
(Photo: Melinda Musser/CCC)

After two years of operating a satellite bike repair shed in North Portland’s public mixed-income New Columbia community, the Community Cycling Center is deepening its community involvement.

The nonprofit bike shop and biking-for-everyone advocacy group is combining bike events and education with a rising educational philosophy known as “Thrive” in an effort to help residents change their city for the better.

“A lot of the time organizations go to a community and they don’t really try to help, but you give them what you think they need,” said Sheena Ilaoa, an educator who just finished a summer designing the new curriculum for the CCC. “What we’re trying to give them is tools.”

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Converted school bus is home to new bike repair shop in North Portland

Thursday, July 12th, 2012
Black Bird Bicycle Repair-3
Sherifa Roach, inside an old school bus,
which is home to her new bike repair shop.
(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)

There’s a new bike repair shop that’s open for business just a half-block off the busy N Williams Avenue bike corridor. Sherifa Roach, a nearby resident, recent United Bicycle Institute graduate and veteran volunteer at local bike shops, has opened Black Bird Bicycle Repair at 104 N. Failing Street (between Williams and Vancouver).

I’d heard from a few sources that someone was operating a bike shop out of an old school bus, so I swung by yesterday for a closer look. Sure enough, there was Sherifa, giving away bags of popcorn as part of the RAD event, and smiling in her apron in front of a big purple bus parked in the alleyway behind her. She was proud to give me a tour of the inside (which I found surprisingly roomy).

Sherifa pointed out how her partner had completely remodeled the inside of the bus. He wired it up with new electrical outlets, built wooden work benches, installed new lighting, added some security bars for the windows, and built a ramp off the rear door so people can roll their bikes right on up.
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Man says he was intentionally run down while biking on N. Williams Ave

Thursday, May 31st, 2012
Scott Stephenson says he suffered facial wounds
after a woman intentionally ran into him
while he biked on N Williams Avenue.
(Photo: Scott Stephenson)

North Portland resident Scott Stephenson is still shaken up after being involved in a road rage altercation on North Williams Avenue last Saturday. Stephenson, 31, says he and a woman driving a car got into a shouting match and that the woman escalated the situation by intentionally swerving her vehicle into him, knocking him to the ground, and then fleeing the scene.

After hearing about Stephenson’s story, I contacted him directly to hear his side of the story. Here’s how he remembers it…

Stephenson was stopped in the bike lane, waiting at the red light at N. Fremont at about 1:00 pm. As his light turned green, a woman was getting into her car just outside the Williams St. Market. She left her driver’s side door open, and Stephenson says his arm “grazed her door.” “It was no big deal,” he recalled, “So I just kept on going.” (more…)

Michigan Ave bike boulevard saved! PCC approves underground parking garage

Thursday, January 5th, 2012
Rendering of plans. New parking
garage is in upper left, N.
Killingsworth St. is in lower right.

Portland Community College has approved plans for a new parking garage at their Cascade campus in North Portland — and it won’t be the four-story, $9 million structure that many people (including myself) were concerned about due to its potential impacts on the future Michigan Ave bike boulevard.

Instead, PCC announced today that a proposal for an underground parking facility on N. Jessup between N. Albina and Mississippi was approved in late December and they’re “going forward with it.”
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City project gives North Portland school a biking boost

Wednesday, January 4th, 2012
The new bike lane and bike parking in front of Cesar Chavez School on N. Willis Blvd.
(Photo: Gabe Graff/City of Portland)

Biking continues to improve for residents of North Portland. The City just unwrapped a small but important improvement that will improve bike safety during pick-up and drop-off on the main road outside Cesar Chavez School on N. Willis Blvd. (more…)

Going Street bike boulevard gets crossing help with new median

Thursday, November 17th, 2011
The new median on NE 15th at Going.
(Photos: Charles Powne)

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Non-profit wins grant to build bike skills park at New Columbia

Wednesday, November 16th, 2011
Thanks to the Community Cycling Center, this vacant lot in the New Columbia mixed-income housing neighborhood will soon be home to a bike skills park, pump track and repair center!
(Photo © J. Maus)

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PCC Cascade eyes multi-level parking garage on Michigan Ave

Wednesday, October 26th, 2011
PCC has determined that the
corner of Michigan and Killingsworth
would be the best location for a
multi-story parking garage.
(Photo © J. Maus)

Portland Community College’s Cascade campus is considering the construction of a four-story parking garage on the northeast corner of N Michigan and Killingsworth. The project is part of district-wide expansion plans funded by a $374 million bond measure passed by voters in 2008.

While some neighborhood residents are alarmed at the potential impacts of a parking garage — especially its alignment along the bicycle boulevard planned for Michigan Ave — PCC officials say that the structure is not a done deal and they still might not have build it. (more…)