northwest trail alliance
The City of Portland says the State Land Use Board of Appeals has no jurisdiction over its decision to prohibit bicycling on trails at River View Natural Area.
In a “motion to dismiss” filed on April 13th (which we obtained through a public records request, PDF here), Chief Deputy City Attorney Kathryn Beaumont argues that Commissioners Amanda Fritz and Nick Fish acted within their “managerial discretion” when they informed the community via a letter on March 2nd that bicycling would no longer be allowed on the 146 acre parcel.
The decision shocked riders and biking advocates. People have been riding the trails at River View for decades. And, following its purchase by the City of Portland in 2011, advocates were working in partnership with the Portland Parks & Recreation and Environmental Services bureaus on a management and trails plan under the assumption that bicycle trails would be allowed. The Northwest Trail Alliance, a Portland-based non-profit that builds, maintains and promotes off-road bike trails, responded by filing a Notice of Intent to Appeal with the State Land Use Board of Appeals on March 23rd. (more…)
On Wednesday of last week, the Portland Parks & Recreation Bureau hosted a Project Advisory Committee (PAC) meeting for the River View Natural Area. It was the first such meeting in 14 months for the group charged with developing a management plan for the 146-acre parcel.
Mountain bike advocates have been eager to re-engage with the process and learn more about why their activity was banned by Commissioners Amanda Fritz and Nick Fish last month. (Prior to the city’s purchase of River View, Portlanders had ridden bikes on its many trails for over two decades.) That decision came without warning and was made completely outside of the established public process.
The decision has made Portland a national embarrassment.
While he can’t keep Portland’s anti-mountain biking stances out of the headlines, at Wednesday’s meeting Parks Director Mike Abbaté did his best to make sure the topic of biking remained out of the public process around River View.
Here’s Abbaté attempt at doing that in his opening address to the committee and the assembled public: (more…)
The City of Portland’s defensive legal move to ban mountain biking in Southwest Portland’s River View Natural Area is an unfair breach of trust with mountain bikers, according to The Oregonian’s editorial board.
“River View, where cycling has occurred for years, remained the best city option for serious, if limited, mountain bike trails,” the newspaper wrote in a scathing editorial published online Wednesday. “To that end, cyclists attended meetings, participated enthusiastically in the public process upon which Portland places so much emphasis and trusted the city to act in good faith. The city did not.”
With renewed energy from Portland’s off-road biking advocates and a Metro project that could open up 1,300 acress of trail possibilities, 2015 could be a very big year for advocates itching for more local single track trails.
As we reported yesterday, local advocacy and trail building group the Northwest Trail Alliance has thrown down a gauntlet of sorts by launching an online petition in the form of an open letter to members of Portland City Council. The petition urges them to “catch up with the overflowing demand for off-road cycling opportunities.” By the time this story is published there will likely be close to 1,000 signatures collected in its first two days.
Hundreds of local mountain biking lovers are piling signatures into a new petition saying Portland is “decades overdue” on writing a plan for “how to meet the overflowing demand for recreational cycling access.”
(Photo courtesy Andy Jansky)
This article was written by Andy Jansky, a volunteer trail steward with the Northwest Trail Alliance.
It’s time to start a new cycling movement. I call it the “Dirt Roots Movement” and it’s all about getting more kids on mountain bikes. (more…)
Stub Stewart State Park is slowly but surely becoming a mountain biking destination. And it’s only going to get better this summer as the Northwest Trail Alliance (NWTA) just announced a $10,000 grant from outdoor gear retailer REI.
According to the NWTA, the grant will help fund a package of trail stewardship and improvement projects at Stub Stewart. The park, just 33 miles west of Portland, has been the focus on NWTA work and advocacy since 2008. It already boasts 15 miles of mountain bike trails, a network of free-ride/mountain-bike specific trails, and there’s plenty more that could be built — the only thing missing is money and volunteers.
With the recent hire Dave Roth, their first-ever full-time director, and election of Kelsey Cardwell as Board President, Northwest Trail Alliance is shoving off into an important new era of off-road cycling advocacy.