Portland has a long way to go, but it’s one of the country’s best cities to bike in. Sad to say, it isn’t yet one of the country’s best cities to walk in.
So why do so many people, here and elsewhere, speak as if there’s an activity called “bikingandwalking” that can be encouraged all at once?
Some new research from a recent Portland State University engineering grad helps to disentangle the science of these two awesome activities.
Portland’s official policy is that when push comes to shove, making it safe and efficient to walk is a higher priority than making it safe and efficient to bike, which is a higher priority than making it safe and efficient to drive.
So why is it that when construction closes part of a street, sidewalks are so often the first to go?
On Thursday, a local engineering consultant led a walk through downtown Portland to show that it doesn’t have to work this way.
Livable Streets Action.
A new group called Livable Streets Action is taking the tactics that have won a string of victories for local biking this spring and summer and applying them to other modes, too.
Organizer Dan Kaufman, a videographer and longtime local social justice advocate who has helped organize demonstrations for transportation activism group BikeLoudPDX and the bike-based but non-transportation-focused group Bike Swarm, referred to Livable Streets Action as a “subgroup” of those other groups.
Livable Streets Action’s first event is tomorrow, a Friday afternoon commemoration for Marlene Popps, a woman who was hit by a car and left for dead on the evening of July 4 at the corner of SE 60th and Holgate. She died of her injuries July 21.
(Photo: Ed Yourdon)
Here on BikePortland, we love to switch focus around the many ways to enjoy bikes, from dirt-trails or the daily commute. And if you ask me, Jonathan’s inspired combination of sport, fun and policy is the special recipe that has made this site a viable business as well as a work of love for everyone involved.
So as reader Adam wrote this week, isn’t it time for someone to apply a similar approach to athleticism on foot?
Here’s what Adam wrote this afternoon beneath our post about the appeal of gravel paths to people running:
(Image: Google Street View)
In Oregon and Washington as in many states, every corner is a legal crosswalk, and all vehicles are supposed to stop for someone trying to use it.
But good luck getting people to stop for you at corners like Southeast 82nd Avenue and Cooper Street.
A preannounced police enforcement action at the crosswalk on March 25 resulted in 61 citations and four warnings, the most ever issued during one of Portland’s periodic crosswalk enforcement events.
brought to you in part by speed bumps.
This post is part of our SW Portland Week.
Part of Portland’s big idea of renaming “bike boulevards” as “neighborhood greenways” was that they’re not just bikeways; they’re spaces for street play, sports and other fun. And they’re also, the line goes, good for walking.
It’s easy to laugh that last part off on the east side of Portland, where almost every greenway is lined with sidewalks.
Not so in Southwest Portland, where neighborhood greenways are few but sidewalks are nearly as rare.
bizarre rules to govern their own behavior as they
strolled through Southeast Portland.
(Photo: Oregon Walks)
Portland’s annual three-week festival of fun on foot, inspired by PedalPalooza, has its first big burst of action this Saturday.
Walktober is run by advocacy group Oregon Walks. Like PedalPalooza, anyone can create an event online; the most interesting will survive.
With lots of good contenders for people interested in exploring, learning more about the city or just sampling many kinds of beer without worrying about the bike home, we thought we’d pull a few highlights from this month’s calendar of walking events.
Two state legislators’ announcement this week that $1.9 million from the state’s general fund would pay for new flashing beacons and traffic islands at 18 East Portland crosswalks communicated two things about Portland streets.
First: that street safety is one of State Rep. Shemia Fagan’s core issues, something she’s consistently putting political capital behind. Second: that rectangular rapid-flash beacons, which communicate a person’s desire to cross without using red lights to stop traffic completely, have become one of the city’s go-to safety tools.
The City of Portland’s general fund has a few million dollars to spare, and Commissioner Steve Novick is mounting an unusual campaign to spend some of it on safer street crossings.
In an interview Friday, Novick called out a few police operations in particular as having lower returns on investment.