Gravel - Cycle Oregon

Opinion: Better Naito has ended in the worst way

By on September 21st, 2018 at 1:27 pm

It’s gone. Ripped out last night — a full day before it was scheduled to be removed.

What’s one more day when we already got cheated out of a full week due to a conflict with a nearby bridge construction project?

It’s a lot.
[Read more…]

Get on the bus with your bike

How not to do bike parking

By on September 21st, 2018 at 11:24 am

Looks OK from far away.
(Photos: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

Like some sort of riddle.

The other day I pulled up to an event at a Kaiser Permanente location in north Portland and was pleased to see a covered bike parking area. Then as I got closer all I could do was scratch my head.

As I pulled my bike in, I couldn’t figure how I was supposed to use it. The fact that a bike was locked awkwardly — as if someone had given up on it — was a red flag. There two different metal loops and a big ramp thing and none of it really seemed to fit together.

Another person was there with me (who happens to be one of the most senior leaders of the Portland Bureau of Transportation) said something like, “I think I’ve figured it out.” I looked over and he had rolled his front wheel up the ramp, which placed his bike fully under the canopy. That’s nice, I thought. But my bike has a very heavy and wide front end and there was no way I could do that.
[Read more…]

Weekend Event Guide: Harvest Century, Sunday Parkways, Ninkrossi, and more

By on September 21st, 2018 at 10:34 am

Get out and enjoy it.
(Photo: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

Quick housekeeping note: BikePortland relies on advertisers to survive. We have an opening to sponsor this Weekend Event Guide. It’s a golden opportunity! Please get in touch if interested.

Hasn’t this weather been amazing? The onset of crisp and colorful fall-like conditions have us dreaming about long days in the saddle. While we might see a spot of ran here and there on Saturday, there should be plenty of sun for the Harvest Century and Sunday Parkways.

Here’s our selection of things to do on a bike this weekend…

[Read more…]

It’s Park(ing) Day in Portland!

By on September 21st, 2018 at 9:20 am

Ping-pong is just one of many more interesting things we could do with our valuable curb space than park people’s cars.
(Photo: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

Official PBOT logo.

Despite what you’ve seen in the brochures or read about in the NY Times, the city of Portland is still overrun with cars. The socially awkward, poisonous, and dangerous personal transport vehicles take up the vast majority of our roadway space.

Park(ing) Day — which takes place today citywide — is a chance to ponder that tragedy and consider more sensible things to do with our public right-of-way.

The event is organized by Portland Bureau of Transportation. And while they can’t just directly throw shade at our unhealthy relationship with driving, it’s clear the event is intended to highlight our car abuse problem. According to official verbiage, the event, “Gives people the opportunity to re-envision how we use our public spaces… PBOT wants to encourage you to rethink how streets can be used.”

18 businesses and organizations have received permits to use the curb lane to install all sorts of cool stuff like small parks, art installations, lounge areas, and more. Find out if there’s one near your travels today. Here’s the map followed by a list of locations and descriptions:

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North Portland

Art Parking (on N Denver St between N Schofield St & N Kilpatrick St): Art for All. Come create art and display your work on the display racks provided.

Northeast Portland

Don’t Park, PUTT!! (on NE Multnomah St between NE 7th Ave and 9th Ave) : It’s National Putt Putt day, come and try out our mini putt-putt course, enjoy snacks and get some swag! For pedestrians and cyclists. By Go Lloyd.

Northwest Portland

Burst Your Bubble (on NW 17th Ave between NW Lovejoy St and NW Kearney St): Come and enjoy a public bubble park for kids of all ages! By Opsis Architecture.

CRES-tober-Fest (on NW Marshall St between NW 14th Ave and NW 15th Ave): CRES-tober-Fest will be a fall celebration theme park complete with apple cider, corn-hole, giant Jenga, and pretzels. By Cambridge Real Estate Services.

Future Prairie Mobile Podcasting Studio (on NW 11th Ave between NW Couch St and NW Davis St): Join this mobile podcasting studio and enjoy some complimentary tea. By Future Prairie (artist collective).

Public Art Park (on NW 17th Ave between NW Northrup St and NW Overton St): Public Art Installation with all surfaces vibrantly painted with colors and patterns. By Swift.

Street Carnival (on NW 11th Ave between NW Marshall St and NW Lovejoy St): Come check out a StreetCar Cutout and get your picture taken. There will be a spinning wheel and lots of StreetCar swag to go around! By Portland StreetCar, Inc.

Urban Transformation (on NW Everett St between NW 10th Ave and NW 9th Ave): This parklet is a mini urban transect, more constructed on one end and more natural on the other. Sit or move through the space and leave thoughts and ideas on a wishing tree. By Sera Architects.

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Southeast Portland

Bikes & Coffee (on SE 52nd Ave between SE Tibbetts St and SE Franklin St): Coffee for cyclists (and anyone who like a good cuppa), as well as various bike tools and part on hand. By a Portland resident.

Connections: Reclaiming Streets and Revisiting Public Art (on SE Hawthorne Blvd between SE Grand Ave and SE 6th Ave): On the Multnomah County Building there are two bronze bas reliefs entitled Connections. Come and get a good look at these beautiful pieces of art! By Multnomah County.

Getting to Know You: Hey Neighbor! (on SE Hawthorne Blvd between SE 35th Ave and SE 35th Pl): Seating and games outside of Metro Boutique. Come and engage in an activity to learn more about your neighbors and neighborhood. By SE Uplift.

Making Connections for Fun (on SE 18th Ave between SE Ash St and SE Ankeny St): Bring your indoor plant out for a day in the sun and connect with your neighbors for a game of connect four or puzzle solving! By PlusQA.

Teddy Bear Picnic (on SE Alder St between SE 16th Ave and SE 15th Ave): Come and take a tea break with panda bears while surrounded by bamboo plants. By a Portland resident.

The Write On Letter Writing Lounge (on SE Division St between SE 32nd Ave and SE 33rd Ave): Pull up a chair, grab a pen and take time for some slow communication. This installation transforms a parking space into a letter writing salon! By Egg Press.

Neighborhood to the River (on SE Hawthorne Blvd between SE 40th Ave and SE 41st Ave): BES, Friends of Trees and New Seasons Market bring you the stream. Enjoy salmon, streams and trees and learn more about watershed health and stormwater management. By the Portland Bureau of Environmental Services.

Southwest Portland

Future of Transportation (on SW 2nd Ave between SW Taylor St and SW Yamhill St): An installation designed to provoke conversation about the future of transportation in Portland, including electric bikes, scooters and cars, rideshare and more. Enjoy trivia and prizes, a voting board and snacks while checking out an e-bike or scooter. By Forth Empowering Mobility.

What Will You Miss? (on SW Park Ave between SW Taylor St and SW Yamhill St): Sharing Mercy Corp’s vision that resilience is possible with climate change. What will you miss when we are further impacted by climate change? By Mercy Corps.

Skylab Installation (on SW 13th Ave between SW Burnside St and SW Washington St): Our PARK(ing) Installation seeks to give people a reason to take a break and pay more attention to their surroundings. Our unique ground surface will hopefully cause people to engage with the site and participate in thought provoking activities. By Skylab Architecture.

— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and jonathan@bikeportland.org

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Harvest Century is September 23rd

New keypads (finally!) coming to Biketown bikes

By on September 20th, 2018 at 1:04 pm

Snow, rain, spray paint: They’ve been through a lot.
(Photos: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

The Oregonian reported Tuesday that about 450 new keypads are on their way to Biketown bikes in the coming months.

This will be music to the ears of many of you as we’ve heard numerous complaints about unresponsive keypads for months now. Unlike older kiosk-based systems, the “smart” Biketown bikes the keypads are built into the rear rack. Users must enter a PIN and/or a six-digit rental code to unlock a bike. With over two years of wear-and-tear, many of the keypads simply don’t work anymore. You press the button and either nothing happens or there’s a frustratingly long delay.

Just over a month ago, I ran into this problem when I tried to rent a bike to get home from downtown after a meeting. There weren’t many bikes available and I tried the keypads on two before I gave up. I eventually tracked down an e-scooter and got home.

The next morning I contacted Biketown’s operator Motivate Inc. and asked General Manager Dorothy Mitchell about the problem. Biketown Marketing Manager Tom Rousculp blamed the problem on their vendor, Jump Bikes (formerly Social Bicycles). He said they’d been, “experiencing connectivity issues, including a system-wide outage over the past week that resulted in a number of unresponsive bikes.”

Here’s more from The Oregonian: [Read more…]

After 20 years, Portland’s bike parking code set for major refresh

By on September 20th, 2018 at 10:08 am

TV lounges — like this one inside the Lloyd Cycle Station — are not part of the proposed changes. Not yet at least.
(Photo: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

1996 was a long time ago. I imagine some of you reading this weren’t even born yet. Did you know the City of Portland is using a bike parking code that was adopted way back then?

It’s true. Even though our bicycling rates have septupled since then and we have about 100,000 more residents, we’re still using a playbook that’s 20 years old. If we want to meet our goal of 25% bicycle mode split by 2030, we’ve got to bring our parking policies into the modern era. Thankfully, a major update is in the works.

Portland’s Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) and Bureau of Planning and Sustainability (BPS) have spent the last two years putting the pieces of the new code together. (You might recall how it was a BikePortland Wonk Night in 2013 that helped kick off this process!).

So, what exactly is this all about? [Read more…]

Rally shows support for protected bikeways and a permanent Better Naito

By on September 19th, 2018 at 12:48 pm

Bike Loud PDX Co-chair Catie Gould addressed the crowd.
(Photos: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

Amid bustling, after-work traffic on Naito Parkway last night, dozens of Portlanders came together to send a message: The protected lanes known as Better Naito should stay.
[Read more…]

City says e-bike use on park paths is a violation, but it’s not enforced

By on September 18th, 2018 at 12:19 pm

Portland City Code prohibits e-bike use on paths like the Springwater.
(Photo: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

Last summer we stumbled upon an inconvenient truth about electric bike use in Oregon State Parks. It turned out that despite their popularity, it was illegal to operate e-bikes on State Park paths and trails.

Thankfully, the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) acknowledged the outdated rules and the State Parks Commission recently approved new ones that explicitly permit e-bike use on their facilities.

Now it appears the City of Portland might have the same problem. [Read more…]

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Better Naito is Portland’s future. It’s time to embrace it

By on September 18th, 2018 at 10:21 am

*Video montage of Better Naito in action this summer courtesy of Streetfilms.

Today is an opportunity to demand better biking in Portland.
[Read more…]

Family Biking: Can’t ride? What’s your backup plan?

By on September 18th, 2018 at 9:05 am

Used the school bus for the first time yesterday!
(Photo: Madi Carlson)

What’s your backup plan when you can’t bike somewhere with your kids?

Our Family Biking column is sponsored by Clever Cycles.

➤ Read past entries here.

I jinxed myself by deciding on this topic last week and woke up sick Monday morning. I biked with my 4th grader one mile to Woodstock Elementary School for his 8:15 a.m. bell, but didn’t feel up to biking four miles to escort my 6th grader to his middle school’s (Hosford) 9:15 a.m. start time.

Enter, the school bus!

The middle school bus is very convenient — it picks up two blocks away from our house and we didn’t even need to sign up for it, just show up when you want to take it. This first time I walked with him and got the lay of the land from two of his last-year classmates who ride regularly (pro tip: try to sit by the front because the 8th graders sit in the back and play bad music and scream about boys when the bus goes by the high school, and the trip home is much worse than the trip in).

I got my work shift covered and slept all day, energetic enough to fetch my 4th grader at 2:30 p.m. and learn that he wants to start biking home alone this week — yay! Less to worry about for future sick days. Then I towed my 6th grader’s bike to middle school (cargo bikes are very handy, even when kids are mostly pedaling on their own) to meet him at 3:45 p.m.[Read more…]

Floyd Landis to open three ‘cycling-themed’ cannabis stores in Portland

By on September 17th, 2018 at 2:52 pm

Floyd Landis in Portland for the launch of his hemp oil pills in July 2017.
(Photo: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

Remember Floyd Landis? He’s the former professional road cyclist and Tour de France competitor who’s made a return to the public spotlight as the founder of a line of cannabis products.

Landis and his partner (and former teammate) David Zabriskie launched their Floyd’s of Leadville hemp oil pills in Portland last summer. Now they’re back in town with plans to open three retail stores that promise to be, “Portland’s first cycling-themed retail cannabis location.”

As the Willamette Week reported in June, Landis is re-branding three existing cannabis stores and transitioning them into the new “active-lifestyle” stores to be named Floyd’s Fine Cannabis.

Here’s more from a press statement:

“Floyd Landis is a former Tour de France winner and professional cyclist well-known for his work with the US Postal Service Cycling Team in the early 2000s. He was later sidelined by a number of difficulties including hip surgery at age 31. His subsequent discovery of cannabis for pain management led to him founding his non-psychoactive CBD products company Floyd’s of Leadville. He now is branching out into cannabis retail with Floyd’s Fine Cannabis… Floyd’s Fine Cannabis is about the integration of cannabis products into active lifestyles.”

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(Photo: Floyd’s of Leadville)

Also to come is a co-branded sock collaboration with Portland-based cycling and running lifestyle and apparel store The Athletic. We profiled The Athletic back in 2015 on the occasion of their first anniversary. In addition to selling the socks and other “active outdoor products that compliment [sic] cannabis,” the new Floyd’s Fine Cannabis stores will host regular bike rides and other events.

Grown Rogue Cycling Team.
(Photo: Grown Rogue Cycling Team/FB)

Lest you think this is Portland’s first direct commercial connection between cannabis and cycling, keep in mind that the Grown Rogue Cycling Team (links to Facebook) boasts 25 full time racers and has been competing in Oregon Bicycle Racing Association events all year. Grown Rogue is a “seed to sale” cannabis company based in Medford Oregon whose CEO and President Obie Strickler said in a 2017 press statement, “We believe our ethos and mantra at Grown Rogue fit well with the sport of cycling. Freedom, beauty, independence, healthy competition–the bicycle represents all these things.”

The grand opening party for Floyd’s Fine Cannabis will be held on September 30th at the NE Broadway location (801 NE Broadway).

For more on this topic, read Anne-Marije Rook’s article on CyclingTips.com, “Does cannabis belong in bike racing?”

— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and jonathan@bikeportland.org

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BikePortland needs your support.

Harvest Century is September 23rd

Comment of the Week: Transit operator reminds us that scooter riders are not the problem

By on September 17th, 2018 at 1:41 pm

A man rides a scooter on NE 122nd near I-84.
(Photo: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

Brendon Constans read our story about the free helmet giveaway and safety education event held in downtown Portland last week and felt his perspective as a transit vehicle operator would help the discussion.

Here’s what Brendon had to say (via Facebook):

“I have been a public transit operator for 7 years (TriMet bus operator, MAX operator, now Streetcar operator) and see the behavior of all road users on a regular basis throughout my shifts.

Here’s what I know from my experience:

Portland rarely, if ever, enforces the rules against car drivers either.

I see gross negligence by motorists all day, everyday. [Read more…]

Planning Commission finds ‘missing middle,’ votes for more housing citywide

By on September 17th, 2018 at 1:04 pm

A 1905 duplex on SE 33rd Avenue in Portland. Like many other cities, Portland made these illegal on most lots in the mid 20th century. Photo by Portland for Everyone.

“What do the neighbors have to be afraid of? It’s buildings, people or cars.”
— Chris Smith, Planning Commissioner

An earlier version of this post was published by the Sightline Institute. It’s by BikePortland’s former news editor, Michael Andersen, who started covering the need for “missing middle” housing — especially in Portland’s most bikeable neighborhoods — for us in 2015. We last covered this issue in May, just before the crucial public hearings described here.

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The most provocative housing policy event of this week in the Pacific Northwest started happening four months ago.
[Read more…]

Portland Police deploy canine, air support units to chase down bike thief

By on September 17th, 2018 at 11:31 am

Good girl Utzi!
(Photo: PPB)

On Friday evening we learned what great lengths the Portland Police Bureau will go to retrieve a bicycle.

It happened around 6:00 pm in northeast Portland when someone reported that a child’s bike had been taken from the front lawn of a house on the 5500 hundred block of NE Simpson Street.

The suspect was seen walking away with the bike and didn’t stop after several neighborhood kids asked him to return it. Here’s how the ensuing chase unfolded, according to the PPB statement:

Arriving officers obtained the subject description and learned from the family members that the subject might have boarded a TriMet bus with the stolen bike.

Officers were able to locate the correct bus. Officers observed a child’s blue bike matching the victim description, mounted on the bus bike rack. Officers flagged down the bus driver, who confirmed that a male subject matching the suspect’s description was inside the bus.
[Read more…]

Drone video spotlights Sellwood’s new bike traffic circle

By on September 17th, 2018 at 11:06 am

Still from drone footage of traffic circle on SE Milwaukie.
(Photo/video: Ted Timmons)

Our story about the City of Portland’s new traffic circle on SE Milwaukie and Mitchell spurred a robust conversation about its strengths and weaknesses. New drone footage (below) sheds more light on how it works.
[Read more…]

The Monday Roundup: E-bike dangers, fake helmets, all-powerful Bike Lobby, and more

By on September 17th, 2018 at 10:22 am

Thank you!

This week’s Monday Roundup is brought to you by the Harvest Century coming September 23rd. It’s the last organized ride of the season, and with four route choices, there’s something for the entire family. Get 15% off registration when you use “BIKEPORTLAND18” code at checkout.

Here are the most noteworthy items we were introduced to in the past seven days…

Bike lobby strikes again: Framed around a project that looks a lot like Better Naito, advocates for better cycling in Baltimore have struck fear into the heart of Fortune magazine editor Rush Loving Jr.
[Read more…]

Pressure builds on City of Portland to keep Better Naito in place

By on September 14th, 2018 at 11:02 am

Better Naito, shown here during its launch back in May, has been a big success. Its biggest supporters have been PBOT staff and elected officials. So, why take it down?
(Photo: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

Two of Portland’s transportation reform advocacy groups are ratcheting up their opposition to the City of Portland’s plans to tear down the Better Naito project at the end of next week.
[Read more…]

My neighbors actually showed up! Maybe it was just the free ice cream

By on September 14th, 2018 at 9:03 am

50 people showed up to our neighborhood park to talk with each other about the project.
(Photos: Kiel Johnson)

This is the conclusion to Kiel Johnson’s grassroots effort to talk to more of his neighbors about a transportation project. Don’t miss part one and part two.

After three days of knocking on doors inviting our neighbors to an ice cream social to discuss the proposed Lloyd to Woodlawn Neighborhood Greenway, it was time to find out if anyone would actually show up.
[Read more…]

Jobs of the Week: Cento, HGNR/Dumonde Tech, Alta Planning + Design

By on September 14th, 2018 at 7:43 am

Here are our latest job listings.

Learn more about each one via the links below…

–> eCommerce Manager (plus more) – Cento Cycling

–> National Inside Sales and Customer Service – HGNR/Dumonde Tech

–> Web Developer – Alta Planning + Design
[Read more…]

The creations of ‘Fiets of Strength’ builder Jake Ryder

By on September 13th, 2018 at 2:28 pm

Ryder uses his customers’ existing bikes to build his distinctive cargo creations.
(Photos: James Buckroyd)

You may have seen Jake Ryder’s creations via J_ryde on Instagram, ogled the cyclocross images he shoots as Sellwood Cycles’ official photog, or heard his name from a friend who is into Zoobomb or freak bikes. Either way, Jake is a multi-talented maker who has carved a niche based on his unique perspective on cycling.

I visited his shop in southeast Portland recently to learn a bit more about him.
[Read more…]