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Portion of Esplanade path might have to close due to high water

By on March 23rd, 2017 at 4:07 pm

Current conditions.
(Photos: Portland Parks & Rec)

The City of Portland Parks and Recreation bureau says the floating portions of the Eastbank Esplanade could close if water levels in the Willamette River continue to climb.

Here’s the problem: The section of path just north and south of the Burnside Bridge is tethered to the riverbank. The ramps that lead down to the floating path are fixed. Therefore, as water rises, the path rises above the ramps, creating a sharp incline as seen in the photos above.[Read more…]

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State eyes $131 million per year in new active transportation and safety funding

By on March 23rd, 2017 at 2:44 pm

State Senator Lee Beyer during his presentation to the Joint Committee yesterday.

After months of speculation, legislators are finally sharing proposals that will eventually make up the statewide transportation funding bill.

Yesterday during a meeting of the Joint Committee on Transportation Preservation and Modernization, State Senator Lee Beyer (D-Springfield) laid out a proposal that would raise an additional $131 million a year for bicycling, walking, transit and street safety projects statewide.

Sen. Beyer, who led the workgroup and is co-chair of the committee, broke up the proposal into four sections: transit, safe routes to school, safety projects, and off-highway paths.

Here’s how it all breaks down.

Transit – $107 million a year

[Read more…]

In unanimous letter, Metro council says they agree with coalition on regional spending priorities

By on March 23rd, 2017 at 10:30 am

(Photo: Metro)

Whatever transportation funding package emerges for the Portland region, it’ll include a lot more than three freeway expansion projects and one transit project. Why? Because all seven members of Metro Council — including president Tom Hughes, just said so.
[Read more…]

Say it ain’t so: Water Bureau project will close access to lower Saltzman Road May-June

By on March 22nd, 2017 at 5:48 pm

(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

A key portion of a dirt road so beloved by local riders that a bicycle and a jersey have been named after it will be closed for two months starting next month.
[Read more…]

45 days later, TriMet still has no estimate for re-opening of Lafayette Street bridge elevator

By on March 22nd, 2017 at 5:09 pm

“Temporarily.”
(Photo via @marneduke on Twitter)

An elevator on a bridge needed for cycling over light rail and railroad lines in southeast Portland has been closed for nearly seven weeks now. And TriMet, the owner of the facility, still isn’t sure when it will re-open.

On February 20th we reported that the elevator at the Rhine-Lafayette Bridge was broken. TriMet said moisture had gotten into the elevator shaft, causing the brakes the fail.

After posting our story we heard from several readers who were frustrated about losing such an important connection. As you can see in the map below, the railyard splits two neighborhoods and there are very few ways to get across it. While there are stairs with a wheel-gutter, the gutter is hard to use and for many people there are too many stairs to manage carrying their bike safely.

“This bridge being out is a significant impediment for those of us who use it to head North-South — makes my quick 15 minute ride from Sellwood to inner Clinton area twice as long and even longer if I’m headed further north,” wrote reader Carrie. “This whole thing is ridiculous. They tore down the old bridge because, well it was sketchy, but because it wasn’t ADA compliant. Then they build this new one, can’t afford(?) to build one at Harold or Reedway, and yet can’t maintain it and so now anyone who can’t do stairs, or can’t carry their bike up/down stairs (and it’s kind of scary to come down the stairs in the dark rain shouldering your bike) are screwed — there’s no where nearby to get from point a to point b.”
[Read more…]

City: Tells us where to build off-road bike trails

By on March 22nd, 2017 at 2:14 pm

Ventura Park Pump Track grand opening-17

The pump track at Ventura Park. Where should we build more of these?
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

Where should we build bike parks and pump tracks? Are there parcels of vacant land where a network of dirt cycling trails could be stitched together? Should we consider improving and/or expanding bicycle access on trails in Forest Park?

These are the questions the City of Portland wants help answering as they move closer to the completion of Portland’s first-ever Off-Road Cycling Master Plan.

After 14 months of meetings with an advisory committeee the Portland Bureau of Planning and Sustainability (they’re leading the project but the parks and transportation bureaus are also involved) released a virtual open house today. BPS has also released dates for four open houses and two community events in April.
[Read more…]

County’s Burnside Bridge project plans put bicycle riders on sidewalk for two years

By on March 21st, 2017 at 2:33 pm

(Graphics: HDR/Multnomah County)

Next month Multnomah County and private contractor will kick off a major rehabilitation project for the Burnside Bridge. The project will nip and tuck the historic span in hopes of getting another 15-20 years of service out of it.

According to construction plans released by HDR (the contractor hired to perform the work), there will be significant changes to bridge operations for two years while the project is completed. From November of this year through November 2019, the plan is to have bicycle users share a sidewalk/sidepath with people walking. The plan will also reduce the number of standard vehicle lanes from five the three.
[Read more…]

Industry Ticker: Renovo’s ‘John Day’ gravel bike

By on March 21st, 2017 at 10:26 am

Made in Portland.
(Photos: Renovo Hardwood Bicycles)

Renovo Hardwood Bicycles has come a very long way since we first profiled them nine years ago. The company has added staff, inked major partnerships, and significantly expanded their offerings.
[Read more…]


Coalition: No freeway expansions without equal funding for active transportation

By on March 20th, 2017 at 2:25 pm

Download the letter (PDF). —

A powerful coalition of advocacy groups says they won’t support a regional funding proposal without “dollar-for-dollar” investment in biking, walking, and transit projects.

In a letter sent last week and addressed to TriMet General Manager Neil McFarlane, the TriMet Board of Directors and members of Metro’s Joint Policy Advisory Committee on Transportation (JPACT), the leaders of nine groups said the existing proposal — which is being worked on behind-closed-doors — is too focused on freeway expansions.

For several months now, a cabal of regional policymakers and power brokers have cooked up a plan to fund four major projects: expansions to Highway 217, Interstate 5 and Interstate 205; and the SW Corridor transit project.
[Read more…]

The Monday Roundup: Humvees in Oregon, fire bureau vetoes, biking Niagara Falls, and more

By on March 20th, 2017 at 11:07 am

This week’s Monday Roundup is sponsored by Nutcase Helmets.

Here are the best stories we came across last week…

More Humvees ahead: Oregon Senate Bill 645 would clear a path for 2-ton, military-grade Humvees to be driven on the road.

The potholes are insane right now: An anarchist group in Portland is not having it.

See you in court: California says they won’t roll-back auto emissions standards, despite what the Trump administration says. One state down, 49 to go.
[Read more…]

Activists will speak out against GM’s support of freeway expansions at TriMet board meeting

By on March 17th, 2017 at 10:35 am

Jessica Engelman of BikeLoudPDX.
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

The thought of our regional public transit agency advocating for urban freeway expansions — including one in Portland’s central city — does not sit well with many transportation reform activists.

After TriMet GM Neil McFarlane told an audience last month that “It would be nice to make some progress on” three freeway “bottlenecks” in order to “keep our region moving,” volunteers with BikeLoudPDX decided it was time to speak out.

The plucky group is planning to attend the upcoming TriMet board meeting. They want to tell the people who appointed McFarlane that some Portlanders don’t think he should promote a billion dollars of regional transportation funds just to make driving easier.
[Read more…]

‘Human Transit’ author Jarrett Walker to keynote Oregon Active Transportation Summit

By on March 17th, 2017 at 9:20 am

Jarrett Walker.
(Photo: Jarrett Walker)

Starting this Sunday with mobile tours and a social mixer, transportation reform activists from across the region and state will gather in Portland for the annual Oregon Active Transportation Summit. The event, hosted by The Street Trust, offers three days of presentations, workshops, speeches, and more.

Taking place this year at the Oregon Zoo, the event (3/19 – 3/21) also includes the Oregon Safe Routes to School Annual Meeting and the Oregon Bicycle Tourism Conference (presented by Travel Oregon). If you care about making it easier to bike, walk, or take transit in Oregon — or if you are a professional in the field seeking to learn the latest best practices — you should consider taking part.

The main event kicks off Monday morning with keynote speaker Jarrett Walker. Walker is a transit consultant based in Portland and author of the book, Human Transit: How clearer thinking about public transit can enrich our communities and our lives. Walker also maintains blog, has a Ph.D. in Drama and Literature from Stanford University, and is only person with peer-reviewed articles in both the Journal of Transport Geography and Shakespeare Quarterly.[Read more…]

Jobs of the Week: The Lumberyard, Citybikes, Oregon E-Bikes, Go By Bike

By on March 17th, 2017 at 8:42 am

We had four new job opportunities listed this week!

Learn more about each one via the links below…

–> Bike Instructor for Summer Camp – The Lumberyard Bike Park

–> Bike Mechanic (Seasonal) – Citybikes Workers’ Cooperative

–> Service Technician/Sales – Oregon E-Bikes, Hood River

–> Bike valet/mechanic – Go By Bike

[Read more…]

Portland inks $750,000 Biketown sponsorship deal with Kaiser Permanente

By on March 16th, 2017 at 12:44 pm

New public plaza on SW 3rd and Ankeny-2.jpg

Now an even healthier option.
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

The City of Portland’s Biketown bank account just got a bit healthier. $750,000 healthier.

That’s the amount of a new sponsorship deal between the City’s bike share program and Kaiser Permanente. According to Dani Simons of Motivate, the company that operates Biketown, the deal will be spread out over five years (that’s $150,000 per year). With a $10 million investment, Nike is still the founding and title sponsor of Biketown. Kaiser’s cash will allow it to become the exclusive sponsor in the health insurance and health care industry category.

In exchange for their financial support, Kaiser will get branding on 25, or one-fourth of all Biketown stations. They’ll also get logo placement and other tie-ins inside the Biketown mobile app (which has been downloaded 41,176 times) and on the web-based version of the system map. When users click a station to reserve a bike, there’s a drop-down menu that allows them to shop for a health insurance plan right on the Biketown website. Here are a few screenshots of how it looks:

[Read more…]

Weekend Event Guide: Bike club birthday, donuts, sandwiches, coffee, and more

By on March 16th, 2017 at 10:50 am

We love bike ride poster art.

See that glowing orb in the sky right now? That’s the sun!

This winter has been brutal for biking; but we’ve got our fingers crossed for a break in the clouds this weekend.

Hopefully you have some bike adventures planned. If you need some ideas, we’ve got a few suggestions — especially if you like sandwiches, donuts, or coffee.

Have fun out there…

Friday, March 17th

Dropout Bike Club 12th Birthday Weekend Kickoff Ride – 9:30 pm at Colonel Summers Park (SE 20th and Belmont)
The Dropouts are one of Portland’s most endearing bike clubs. They were cool jackets, build and ride amazing freak bikes, and they put on some of the best rolling parties of the year. And their official color is green! Come help them kickoff their birthday weekend. More info here.
[Read more…]

Portland edits city bike map to reflect fatal bike lane gap

By on March 15th, 2017 at 2:43 pm

A small but important change.
(Graphic: PBOT Citywide Bike Map)

The City of Portland has edited a section of their official bike map to more accurately depict a dangerous gap in the bike lane where man was killed in 2015.

As we reported at the time, Martin Greenough might have been on his first-ever bike commute when he was hit and killed by an intoxicated driver on NE Lombard. Greenough was hit while bicycling through a dangerous gap in the bike lane that occurs where the lanes narrow to go under an overpass. Unfortunately, the official City of Portland bike map Greenough used to plot his course did not show the gap. The map incorrectly labeled that section of NE Lombard where it goes under 42nd Avenue as having a continuous bike lane.
[Read more…]

Bike companies to high schoolers: We’re cool, come work with us

By on March 15th, 2017 at 12:56 pm

A local high school student in the “Bikes Mean Business” booth.
(Photos: Dan Steinle/Ruckus Composites)

To succeed as an industry cluster in Portland, bicycle companies must compete for the best talent. And that’s no easy task in a town full of well-known names in the tech, fashion and outdoor industry.

To help raise the profile of bicycle-related careers, a group of local bike companies shared a booth at the NW Youth Careers Expo held at the Oregon Convention Center yesterday. The annual event hosts 6,500 students from 70 area high schools who get a chance to meet-and-greet with over 200 companies.

Under the rubric “Bikes Mean Business” (it was also on their custom lanyards, made by Chrome Industries), representatives from Chrome, River City Bicycles, and Chris King Precision Components spent their day talking to local teens about how their future could include a job in the bike industry.
[Read more…]

Troutdale follows Gresham and now a 40-Mile Loop trail extension is dead

By on March 15th, 2017 at 11:10 am

They said no.
(Photo: Metro)

Fears of crime and of “undesirables doing bad things” have fueled another city in the eastern part of our region to say no to a major multi-use path project.

After tallying public feedback from an open house late last month, Metro has decided to suspend all planning efforts for the Troutdale section of their 40-Mile Loop Master Plan because of local opposition. This is a carbon copy of concerns that fueled opposition from the City of Gresham to the same project back in January.

Now, after a year of planning, public events and committee meetings, Metro will pull the plug and put this project on the shelf.[Read more…]

48 hours in Portland: Fatal hit-and-run, three injuries, 2 arrests, and a police chase

By on March 14th, 2017 at 4:04 pm

In just 48 hours many lives were changed forever because of dangerous driving. And it was all preventable.

I often feel that what’s often lost in our debates about transportation projects, policies and funding is a conversation about the staggering toll driving extracts from our city.

In 48 hours starting last Thursday evening, I noticed a stream of police alerts come across my computer. It was a startling spate of incidents that underscored this toll. They involved people using cars dangerously and without respect or consideration for others.
[Read more…]

City of Portland ratchets up their war on speeding

By on March 14th, 2017 at 2:58 pm

Activists with BikeLoudPDX and the Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon rejoice at the sight of new — and lower — speed limit signs on SE Division.
(Photo: BikeLoudPDX)

The City of Portland has unleashed a barrage of attacks against a key rival in their fight against speeding.

With Vision Zero firmly planted as a top priority at the highest levels of city government, the Bureau of Transportation has turned their attention to two of our most dangerous streets: SE Division and SE 122nd.

Here are updates on several speed-related items we continue to track…
[Read more…]