Posted by Elly Blue (Columnist) on May 6th, 2009 at 11:42 am
It’s a classic story in Portland by now — you total your car, assess your options, and decide the time is right to go carfree.
It looks like the latest person to play out this story will be our mayor.
Mayor Adams walked away from a car crash without any injuries last weekend, but his truck wasn’t in such good shape. Oregonian reporter Joseph Rose caught up with the mayor at last night’s Bike Master Plan Open House and asked him about his plans for replacing the truck.
But don’t expect to see the mayor shopping local car lots anytime soon. Following in the smaller carbon footprints of Berkeley, Calif., Mayor Tom Bates, Adams says he’s giving up driving for at least a month. “I’m going to try it,” he said.
Adams related to Rose a conversation he had with his sister shortly after the crash. His sister asked him what kind of car he was going to get next, and Adams said “My bike,” adding “Of course, I’ll probably supplement that with a Zip Car account.”
Rose reports that he encouraged the mayor by telling him about Tom Bates, the 71 year old mayor of Berkeley, California, who recently gave up his car in favor of an annual transit pass as a way to stay in shape and set an example for his constituents.
Mayor Adams, who lives in the Kenton neighborhood of North Portland, occasionally goes on well-publicized bike rides but has not been a habitual bicycle commuter. It will be interesting to see how he does with this self-imposed carfree challenge.
Elly Blue has been writing about bicycling and carfree issues for BikePortland.org since 2006. Find her at http://takingthelane.com