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TriMet now one of four transit providers that are also NACTO members

by on October 12th, 2016 at 2:23 pm

The National Association of City Transportation Officials (NACTO) was formed as a counterweight to the American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials (AASHTO). The group exists to promote more progressive and innovative street designs that reflect how Americans actually want to live in cities.

NACTO has 49 member cities and just announced three new transit agency members. Portland-based TriMet is one of them. Check the full press release below…

NACTO Welcomes New Transit Members, Reinforcing Transit’s Central Role on City Streets
New Transit Members in Seattle, Portland OR, and Miami-Dade County Join Peers in New York City and San Francisco

The National Association of City Transportation Officials (NACTO) today announced that Seattle’s King County Metro, Portland’s TriMet, and Miami-Dade County have joined NACTO as the association’s newest transit agency members, weeks after New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) joined the association. These four major transit providers join NACTO’s 49 member cities across North America working to build sustainable, equitable streets and transit networks.

As more people are choosing to live in cities across North America, cities and transit agencies are partnering to move more people in less space, and make sure all neighborhoods have the streets and transit access that they need. NACTO’s recently-released Transit Street Design Guide, created by this unique coalition, shows how putting transit at the heart of street design greatly expands the number of people a street can move, and unlocks street space to create more vibrant places for everyone.
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Portland’s new surge in bike commuting is real – and it’s gas-price proof

Michael Andersen (Contributor) by on September 15th, 2016 at 12:52 am

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Rush hour on Williams Avenue in May. Once again in 2015, 7 percent of Portlanders said their main commute to work is by bike.
(Photos: J.Maus/BikePortland)

Gas prices? What gas prices?

The great gasoline plunge of late 2014 hasn’t cut the rate of Portlanders biking to work, at least not in 2015.

In fact, drive-alone commuting among Portland residents hit a modern-day low last year — the fifth such record in six years — and public transit commuting jumped to a modern high of 13.4 percent.

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How TriMet’s project in the Rose Quarter Transit Center will impact your ride

by on August 19th, 2016 at 10:50 am

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A busy bikeway cuts right through the middle of the Rose Quarter Transit Center.
(Photo: J Maus/BikePortland)

If you bike through the Rose Quarter Transit Center be advised that starting this Sunday August 21st and lasting two weeks until September 3rd, TriMet is embarking on a major construction project that will close streets, change lange configurations, and put work crews and vehicles all over the place. (more…)

The story of today’s Portland in the path of the No. 75 bus

Michael Andersen (Contributor) by on June 21st, 2016 at 9:49 am

riding against the grain
Screengrab from bus75.org, photo by Geoffrey Hiller.

We don’t often publish transit-only posts, but we’ll make an exception for this one.

Portland-based photographer Geoffrey Hiller is working on an all-year project to document the life of Portland through the lens of a single bus line: the No. 75 that runs between Milwaukie and St. Johns via Chavez, 42nd and Lombard.

For a post yesterday, he recruited Portland-based transit consultant and writer Jarrett Walker (who happened to be a teenage intern at TriMet in the 1980s, when the 75 bus was created) to write about the ways the 75 reveals this moment in Portland’s ebbing, flowing life.

The result is a short illustrated essay that is, somehow, both about our city and about good public transit network design. It’s something to behold:

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As TriMet puts another $2 million into WES, some imagine the bike trail that wasn’t

Michael Andersen (Contributor) by on May 26th, 2016 at 9:41 am

Waiting for WES
WES at Beaverton Transit Center.
(Photo: Thomas Le Ngo)

TriMet’s Westside Express Service commuter rail line, built for the equivalent of $178 million in 2008, is getting some new investment.

The line between Beaverton Transit Center and Wilsonville costs TriMet $135,000 per week to operate and serves something like 900 to 1,000 people per weekday.

That comes out to a cost of $14.83 per boarding in April, compared to $2.68 per boarding of a frequent-service bus line or $2.36 per MAX boarding.

The Oregonian reported Monday that the regional transit agency was agreeing this week to spend another $2 million to buy and retrofit two rail cars from Texas:

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Reminder: TriMet MAX repairs will cut service, crowd trains for two weeks

Michael Andersen (Contributor) by on May 6th, 2016 at 8:35 am

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Grounds for repair on First Avenue.
(Photo: J.Maus/BikePortland)

As we reported last month, the next two weeks will be good times to bike or bus all the way to work rather than trying to get a bike on MAX.

That’s because MAX track and pavement repairs on First Avenue downtown that start on Sunday will scramble service on every line in the system, increasing wait times between trains by 25 to 35 percent and cutting system capacity 30 to 50 percent.

In short: good luck finding a free bike hook, or even squeezing your bike on the rush-hour trains at all.

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With bike sharing two months away, TriMet links ticketing app to Lyft, car2go

Michael Andersen (Contributor) by on May 5th, 2016 at 3:10 pm

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A screenshot from TriMet’s ticketing app.

The more seamlessly mobile future we’ve been talking about since November has started to arrive.

On Thursday, TriMet announced that you can now begin the process of hailing a Lyft or reserving a car2go using their TriMet Tickets app.

“More options, including BIKETOWN bike sharing, are expected be included in the future,” the regional transit agency wrote on its website.

This is a milestone for two reasons: first, it seems to be the first time any transit agency in the country has offered this kind of service, which envisions transit users not as monomodal drones who only get around by train or bus but as actual humans who are constantly using different tools for different jobs.

Second, it’s a real-life step (though a small one) toward the vision spelled out by cities like Helsinki to “make car ownership pointless” within a decade by creating a single, connected “mesh” of options that can whisk you around the city as efficiently — more efficiently, actually — as owning a car and taking it everywhere with you.

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TriMet’s draft Bike Plan will be unveiled next week

by on April 28th, 2016 at 1:53 pm

TriMet's new Bike Plan website.

Screen grab of TriMet’s new Bike Plan website.

The TriMet Bike Plan has been in the works since last July and now the agency is ready to share the first draft. TriMet has announced four open houses and a new online comment system that will give you the chance to share your feedback.

Here’s how TriMet describes the plan:

TriMet is creating a Bike Plan to serve as a roadmap to help guide future investments in biking infrastructure and amenities. The plan is focused on making bike and transit trips easier, safer and more convenient for more people. As biking extends the reach of transit, improving bike access to transit stops and stations, expanding parking options, and accommodating bikes on board buses and trains helps keep our region moving, reduce congestion and helps keep our air clean. The goal of the plan is to make bike+transit trips easier, safer and more convenient for more people.

And here are the details on all four open houses: (more…)

Yikes! Bikes almost roll in the way of buses, trains in close-call videos

Michael Andersen (Contributor) by on April 25th, 2016 at 12:11 pm

Sometimes we all make mistakes. TriMet wants more people to think about the fact that some mistakes can be fatal.

It can be difficult to talk about this subject without blaming the victims of traffic violence. To its credit, the video TriMet released today focuses on examples of people who are acting both illegally and at least a little recklessly rather than (as the New York City transit union did recently) condemning people simply for not being cautious. There’s a big difference.

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Street Roots survey turns up differing priorities in mayor’s race

Michael Andersen (Contributor) by on April 18th, 2016 at 2:04 pm

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Mayoral candidates Ted Wheeler, left, and Bim Ditson.
(Photo: J.Maus/BikePortland)

Street Roots, Portland’s first-rate paper about homelessness and housing issues, sometimes asks questions about the closely related subject of transportation.

A questionnaire distributed to the mayoral candidates and published last week includes a quick window into the ways different candidates think about mobility issues.

The question:

Please place the following items in order of priority as mayor.

• Increase parking
• Bike infrastructure
• Low­ or no-fare public transit

Here’s what they said: (more…)