Posted by Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) on July 21st, 2006 at 1:57 pm
Last year’s ride was unfortunately the victim of it’s own success (and maybe some poor planning). Several rest stops and other places on the route caused major bottlenecks and some grumbling from participants as well as city officials.
The craziness was due in part because there are three different routes (10, 8, and 6 bridge) and a walking event (Bridge Stride) all on the same day.
At Wednesday’s meeting were reps from Providence Health System, Portland Office of Transportation, Portland Police Bureau, Portland License Bureau, Portland Parks & Recreation, American Medical Response, Oregon Department of Transportation, Multnomah County, and Tri-Met.
Changes this year focus on route selection, scheduling of riders, and the types of activities at key locations (especially on the bridges). Major thanks to Greg Raisman from PDOT for the following info.
Due to a major bottleneck at the entrance to the Springwater Trail last year, organizers have decided to instead use McLoughlin Boulevard.
Riders who plan to cross 8 or 10 bridges will start between 6:30 and 7:30 AM. Then, unlike last year, there will be one-hour break before the 6-bridge riders begin. In addition to the staggered start, 10-bridge riders will begin their course by going north to the Morrison Bridge while 8-bridge riders will travel south to the Hawthorne Bridge. According to organizers, starting on different bridges will ensure that we won’t have as much course overlap as last year.
There will be far fewer activites on the tops of the two major Interstate bridges. Last year was the 10th anniversary for the event and there were bands and other booths on the tops of the Fremont and Marquam Bridges. This year, there will be a repair stand on the top of each. In addition, PDOT will have a booth on the top of Fremont Bridge and there will be a photo booth on the top of the Marquam Bridge.
In addition, the rest stop that was on the top of the Fremont Bridge has been moved to the area near Winning Way around the Rose Garden. By setting this rest stop slightly off of the main course, riders who need to rest and those wish to continue will not have to dodge each other at the stop as was the case on the top of the Fremont Bridge.
No matter what, it’s still a ride you won’t want to miss. To whet your appetite (the ride is on August 13), check out my photo gallery from last year’s Bridge Pedal.
I’m looking forward to taking over this city with 18,000 of my fellow cyclists!