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Comment of the Week: The car-free destiny of NW 13th Avenue

by on May 27th, 2016 at 5:40 pm

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Northwest 13th Avenue during Sunday Parkways, 2011.
(Photo: J.Maus/BikePortland)

Curb-protected bike lanes are cool and all, but they’ve got nothing on building-protected bike lanes.

That’s roughly the position from BikePortland reader Andrew, who added the first comment to Tuesday’s post about possible downtown protected bike lanes with a very different vision for one of Portland’s most unique streets: Northwest 13th Avenue.

Here’s what Andrew had to say:

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Problems riding on NW Lovejoy between 23rd-25th

by on May 17th, 2016 at 11:34 am

I’ve had 3 instances in the past month of drivers on NW Lovejoy between 23rd and 25th passing me (on bike) with a line of cars in front of me waiting on a light or stop sign. What gives? Is it the yellow dashes in the road where there should be a double-yellow line? Maybe there shouldn’t be a line at all.

In other parts of town, I’ve noticed that cars don’t often pass a bike that is moving at 20 MPH, however in NW Portland, cars seem to want to pass me no matter what speed I am travelling. Maybe this is part of the reason why biking in NW is much less popular than we would expect.

Why am I riding here? well the NW Marshall bike route ends at NW 22nd so anyone wanting to continue towards the west hills on Cornell Road would need to end up on Lovejoy eventually.

Thank you for helping us make NW Portland Week a success!

by on April 19th, 2016 at 1:15 pm

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Some of the crowd at our Get Together on Friday.
(Photos J. Maus/BikePortland)

20 stories, hundreds of images and many new friends and discoveries made for a highly successful NW Portland Week. Thank you for reading and contributing (I think the comment threads were as interesting and valuable as our reporting). And a special thanks goes to our 250 subscribers. Their monthly payments are what make these special reporting projects possible.

So, what did we learn?

We learned that northwest Portland has more potential when it comes to bike access investments than any other part of the city. And if you think those investments would only target “the rich” you might want to read Michael’s excellent story that debunked that myth.
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NW Portland’s best secret routes, hang-outs, and other cool things

by on April 15th, 2016 at 4:44 pm

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NW Cornell road just below Upper Macleay Park.
(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

Part of NW Portland Week.

How often do you just bike around the city and take the time to slow down and see everything? Not just traffic or street signs but everything. These special weeks when we focus on one part of the city give us the opportunity to let a place soak in. Over the past five days I’ve discovered lots of cool stuff about northwest Portland (I hope you have too!). I’ve found new shortcuts I never knew existed, made a few new friends, and have gained a much deeper understanding of this beautiful, historic, and thriving part of our city.
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Portland’s best model for population growth without catastrophe is right in front of us

by on April 15th, 2016 at 3:52 pm

2018 nw everett 1910 9-20

2018 NW Everett Street, built 1910.
(Photos: M.Andersen/BikePortland)

Part of NW Portland Week.

Portland’s “huge population boom” and “explosive growth” have driven such a painful housing shortage that it’s not uncommon these days to hear Portlanders wish the city would stop creating so many jobs.

Since 2008, the city’s population growth rate has been about 9,000 net new residents per year, or 1.5 percent.

But when many of the buildings that continue to define northwest Portland were built, Portland’s population was growing by 7 percent every year for years on end. In the decade of the 1900s, the city that started at 90,000 residents added 11,679 new ones every year on average.

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New Flanders Bridge or not, crossing I-405 is about to get easier

by on April 15th, 2016 at 2:16 pm

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NW Couch where it crosses I-405. Riding through here you must keep your head on a swivel and scoot quickly across three intersections (two of which have no traffic signal).
(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

Part of NW Portland Week.

Eight years ago, when former Mayor Sam Adams made his case to re-use the old Sauvie Island Bridge as a new crossing of I-405 at NW Flanders Street, one of his chief arguments was safety. Adams and Portland Bureau of Transportation staff convinced Portlanders that the nearby crossings at Burnside, Couch, Everett and Glisan, were inherently unsafe for bikers and walkers.
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People on Bikes – NW Portland edition

by on April 15th, 2016 at 10:34 am

pplbikesnwlead
(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

Part of NW Portland Week.

Here’s what cycling — and the people who do it — look like in northwest Portland. (more…)

A lost scrap of NW Portland history: How a fortune cookie helped save Thurman Street

by on April 15th, 2016 at 9:52 am

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Outside the Dragonfly Coffee House Thursday.
(Photos: M.Andersen/BikePortland)

Part of NW Portland Week.

Thurman Street is the last neighborhood north where you can find the sort of stuff that, for a lot of people, make Portland Portland.

One block north of the Food Front Cooperative Grocery and the gluten-free bakery Dessert Labs, you hit the Holiday Inn Express. Then come the railroad tracks, warehouses, gravel distributors, floodplains and eventually just trees to the end of the earth, or at least to Scappoose.

Walking down Thurman Street itself is so rewarding that one of Portland’s most famous residents wrote a whole book about it. They keep a copy behind the reference desk at the branch library on NW 23rd and Thurman: Blue Moon over Thurman Street, published in 1993 by the novelist Ursula K. Le Guin and the photographer Roger Dorband.

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Exploring biking’s potential in the Northwest Industrial District

by on April 14th, 2016 at 2:06 pm

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Can you see the potential in this decommissioned railroad right-of-way on NW Front?
(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

Part of NW Portland Week.

I’m not going to sugarcoat it: riding a bike in the Northwest Industrial District is not for the faint of heart. I enjoy it only in an Escape-from-New-York-get-my-adrenaline-pumping-urban-assault kind of way. But if you stop and look and allow yourself to dream you can see vast potential.
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The Flanders Crossing could be the city’s best bridge project in many years

by on April 14th, 2016 at 9:32 am

flanders bridge span
As part of a new neighborhood greenway, a small biking-walking bridge here would be expected to carry five times as many people a day as Tilikum Crossing’s average weekday bike count.
(Photos: M. Andersen/BikePortland)

Part of NW Portland Week.

Someday, quite possibly two months from tomorrow, northwest Portland will finally land the biggest bike infrastructure investment in its modern history.

The Flanders Crossing bridge across Interstate 405 came close to reality eight years ago, then died amid shifting details and election politics. But it’s too good an idea to stay dead — and events of the last few weeks suggest that it may be on the edge of a breakthrough.

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