steve novick

Very few poor people drive to work downtown

by on November 24th, 2015 at 1:49 pm

The Portland area has invested $4.8 billion in a regional public rail network, and currently spends $313 million a year to hold down ticket prices on the system.

Another several million dollars each year go toward expansions of the region’s biking network.

Despite that investment, at least one Portland city council member has been arguing in the lead-up to a hearing next month that the public should also be subsidizing downtown car trips.

His reasoning: some of the people who drive downtown are poor.


With Blumenauer in his corner, Novick pressures ODOT for changes on Barbur

by on November 9th, 2015 at 4:38 pm

southbound barbur street view
Almost half of southbound rush-hour traffic on Barbur turns right here. Converting the right lane to exit-only could boost driver safety on Barbur while making room for continuous bike lanes to the south.
(Image: Google Street View)

Consensus seems to be building around a new concept that could finally create continuous bike lanes on state-run Barbur Boulevard.

And now, support for changes to a notoriously dangerous section of Barbur have a new ally: U.S. Congressman Earl Blumenauer. (more…)

If elected mayor, Ted Wheeler says he’d overhaul transportation bureau

by on November 9th, 2015 at 10:00 am

Safe Sound and Green press event-3.jpg
Then Multnomah County Chair Ted Wheeler at a
2008 event calling for new local transportation funding.
(Photos: J.Maus/BikePortland)

Portland’s current mayoral frontrunner says that if he wins next year, he’ll take over the transportation bureau and rewrite its budget from scratch.

In an interview with Oregonian columnist David Sarasohn, mayoral hopeful Ted Wheeler said the Portland Bureau of Transportation’s current budget is “byzantine” and that its street system is “a patient on the table bleeding to death.”

“As mayor, Wheeler would assign himself the transportation bureau (along with the mayorally expected police bureau), and start redesigning its budget from zero,” Sarasohn reported in a column published Friday afternoon.

Portland’s mayor doesn’t have many actual powers beyond those of the other four commissioners on the city council. The main difference is that it’s up to the mayor to decide which commissioner gets administrative authority over each of the city’s 19 bureaus and offices.

Highlighting support from BTA, Novick will put local gas tax on May 2016 ballot

by on October 5th, 2015 at 11:55 am

Bike Share passage press conference-3.jpg
Novick hopes second time’s a charm.
(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)

After dismissing it as too unpopular to even merit discussion prior to his last (failed) attempt to raise new revenue for transportation infrastructure, Commissioner Steve Novick now plans to put a 10-cent gas tax on the May 2016 ballot.

After a discussion about the proposal with community leaders today, Novick’s office sent out a press release exclaiming that, “Momentum builds for Portland gas tax to fund street repair and traffic safety.”

And in a marked departure from he and Mayor Charlie Hales’ previous strategy, Novick is not shying away from the “b” word (bikes).


Comment of the Week: One more Portland bike user for better pavement

by on August 21st, 2015 at 4:25 pm

Neighborhood greenway conditions-1
North Michigan Avenue: tighten your bolts.
(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)

This time last year, it looked as if Portland’s city council was about to grit its teeth and start addressing two problems that Mayor Charlie Hales rode into office pledging to fix: the twin facts that our roads are both consistently unsafe and disintegrating beneath us.

Now, as Portland’s leaders get ready to file back in from vacation, all available signs point to both of those cans being kicked further down the road.

Meanwhile, as BikePortland reader Alex wrote in a comment on Tuesday, bike trips through this town keep getting bumpier.


Commissioner Novick responds to ‘Day of Protests’ with diverter promise

by on June 25th, 2015 at 10:36 am

Safe Streets Rally Part 2 at City Hall -19.jpg
BikeLoudPDX volunteer Jessica Engelman
at a protest rally in front of City Hall
(Photos © J. Maus)

An unprecedented day of protests yesterday have yielded their first results.

BikeLoudPDX, Portland’s upstart bike advocacy group that has made lots of headlines in the past few months, started the day with a big rally in front of City Hall followed by several of the group’s leaders giving impassioned testimony in front of City Council. After that, they helped organize several rides and then held another rally on City Hall’s steps last night.

BikeLoud leaders and the people they have inspired to show up to these events share a similar feeling: frustration and anger that city leaders sit idly by while Portlanders risk their lives on unsafe streets. “It’s bullshit!” and “It’s unacceptable!” were just two of the phrases chanted at last night’s rally.

And now it appears those voices are having an impact on City Hall.

Last night City Commissioner Steve Novick, the man in charge of the Bureau of Transportation, penned a lengthy blog post in direct response to the protests. He titled it, “Working together to build safer streets.” (He also shared thoughts about biking and the Climate Action Plan in a separate post.) (more…)

City’s $8 million for 122nd Avenue will aid crossings and trigger new frequent bus line

by on June 10th, 2015 at 5:15 pm

Jasz Morgan rides SE 122nd Avenue between Stark and Market.
(Photos: M.Andersen/BikePortland)

East Portland’s most important north-south street is about to get much easier to cross on bike or foot, and also its own frequent-service bus line.

TriMet is preparing to improve its No. 71 bus to run every 15 minutes or better almost all day, every day, between Parkrose and Lents, transit agency spokeswoman Mary Fetsch said this week. It’ll happen after an $8 million City of Portland investment in 122nd Avenue pavement, sidewalks and crosswalks that’s expected some time in the next year.


Mayor Hales, Commissioner Novick call ‘urgent meeting’ in wake of collisions

by on May 29th, 2015 at 6:16 pm

Coming to the table.
(Photo J. Maus/BikePortland)

Portland Mayor Charlie Hales and City Commissioner Steve Novick have just announced an “urgent meeting” that will take place next week at City Hall to discuss bike safety following a spate of collisions that has sparked widespread concerns.

Novick is the commissioner in charge of the transportation bureau, which has committed to the concept of “Vision Zero” which is a policy and set of actions that aims to eliminate traffic deaths.

Here’s the official word about the meeting that just came down from Novick’s Transportation Policy Advisor Timur Ender: (more…)

With pilot project, City will turn Naito Parkway into public space for all

by on May 19th, 2015 at 8:42 am

It’s coming!
(Graphic: Better Block PDX)

Starting this Friday morning, the non-profit Better Block PDX, the Bureau of Transportation and its commissioner-in-charge Steve Novick will embark on perhaps the boldest experiment we’ve seen in years: the creation of public space on Naito Parkway in what are currently standard travel lanes.

Support builds for walking and biking improvements on east side of Naito Parkway (updated)

by on May 12th, 2015 at 3:29 pm

busy walk path
Even where it isn’t blocked, Naito’s existing goatpath often spills over during festivals.
(Photo: M.Andersen/BikePortland)

A week after Transportation Commissioner Steve Novick’s office called out Naito Parkway for failing to provide “a minimum level of safety for the traveling public” along Waterfront Park, other central-city institutions are weighing in.