Posted by Elly Blue (Columnist) on April 3rd, 2009 at 9:29 am
“Visitors will find that special bike-crossing signals and bike lanes highlighted in bright green help to guide traffic in the most complicated intersections. Breaking up a ride with a stop at a cafe or a pub adds to the pleasure.” – Matt Furber, New York Times
Portland’s bike-friendliness earned prominent billing in the Escapes section of today’s New York Times. An article called “Portland, Portland Style: Touring by Bicycle” encourages travelers to bring their bikes to Portland to see the city the way locals do.
The article extensively quotes Roger Geller, the city’s bicycle coordinator, discussing the “exponential” growth in the number of people on bikes in recent years, and saying that the city’s “goal is to become a world class bicycling city.”
Unlike many bike-oriented travel articles that focus on renting a cruiser for a summer jaunt down Waterfront Park and back along the Eastbank Esplanade before heading to a fancy downtown restaurant, this piece focuses on citywide infrastructure, amenities and destinations.
The story recommends visitors make use of Metro’s Bike There! map, the network of signed, low traffic streets commonly referred to as bike boulevards, and most important, Portland’s numerous breweries and coffeeshops.
A recurring theme is the ease of riding year-round, in all weather, for reasons other than recreation. Grey skies provide a backdrop for the article’s accompanying photos, one of which features a line of jeans-clad riders heading over the Broadway Bridge wearing sensible shoes and riding city bikes with baskets, buckets, and panniers.
The story includes a side box with links to many websites familiar to Portland’s bike-literate, including BikePortland, the Bycycle.org route planner, bike fun group Shift, the Bicycle Transportation Alliance advocacy group, and more.
This isn’t the only coverage of Portland’s bikability in the news this week. OPB’s Oregon Field Guide program has just released a segment on Portland Biking.