Tigard council says City no longer required to put bike lanes on certain downtown streets

Downtown Tigard. Red lines show streets impacted
by amendments to planning code.
View Map

On June 23th, Tigard City Council voted unanimously in favor of planning code amendments that remove the city’s requirement to have bike lanes on specific downtown streets. Along with that decision, they also voted on a code amendment that allows them to put on-street motor vehicle parking on those streets where it was previously not permitted.

Prior to the vote, Tigard’s Transportation System Plan stated, as per their Bicycle Master Plan, that all arterial and collector streets should have a bike lane. The amended code now reads, “…with the exception of collectors within the downtown urban renewal district.”

In a statement released today, the Bicycle Transportation Alliance (BTA) said they are “concerned” about the Council’s decision and the Washington County Bicycle Transportation Coalition (WashCoBTC) emailed the City expressing their opposition.

“We are very concerned about the provision that removes the requirement for bicycle lanes on these streets.”
— From a statement by the BTA

Their are four streets in Tigard that will be impacted by this ruling: Main, Burnham, Scoffins, and Ash (view area in Google Map). According to the new code amendments, the City will now be able to put on-street vehicle parking on those streets and the installation of bike lanes will be up to the discretion of the City Engineer.

According to Tigard city planners, the reason for the changes is to give them more flexibility in downtown street design. Tigard is looking to revitalizing their downtown district and they feel streets in this district should not be governed by a blanket code that applies city-wide.

In their “Staff Analysis” of the proposal sent to the Planning Commission, Tigard staff wrote (download full ordinance and City Council order as PDF here):

“… Development Code street standards address collectors on a city-wide basis Little consideration was given on how collectors might function in different areas of the city. In this case, downtown collectors serve not only as connectors between arterials… they also transport users to a destination — Downtown Tigard.

…downtown collectors should also accommodate those wishing to spend time within the downtown by providing public parking options on the streets. On-street parking will be essential as the downtown redevelops to its intended dense form.”

Tigard Planning Manager
Dick Bewersdorff

Tigard’s Planning Manager, Dick Bewersdorff told me today that the new code is focused on improving downtown. He does not see the decision as having a negative impact on bicycling. According to Bewersdorff, the addition of parked cars will calm traffic and the absence of a bike lane simply means that bikes can share the road with (now slower moving, in theory) cars.

“What we needed to have was parking as much as anything,” said Bewersdorff, “rather than freeways through the city.” Bewersdorff sees the code changes as an essential part of creating a vibrant “small town downtown center,” and told me that downtown Portland streets have similar configurations (he’s right, they do and because signals are timed for 10-12 mph, the work well as bike streets for confident riders).

“You can’t build streets that have parking, bike lanes, trees, are pedestrian friendly, etc… you don’t have much space. It’s a balancing act.”
— Dick Bewersdorff, City of Tigard Planning Manager

Bewersdorff said with limited roadway space and competing interests, there are always trade-off; “You can’t build streets that have parking, bike lanes, trees, are pedestrian friendly, etc… you don’t have much space. It’s a balancing act.”

When I asked him whether or not he feels the new code changes make downtown Tigard less appealing for people on bikes, he said, “I don’t think so, a lot of our staff members ride their bikes to and from city hall all the time, including some of the people involved in the decision.”

Director of the WashCoBTC Hall Ballard said their opposition was based on fears that these code changes would set a precedent for excluding bike facilities in future planning. But, he added, that if the decision went through (which it did) he would want the lanes to be wide enough for bikes and cars to share side by side.

Ballard feels that bikes fare best when they use the road like motor vehicles (as opposed to being in a bike lane). “When the city does any planning,” he added, “we’ll make sure the lanes are wide enough for bikes and cars.”

As for the addition of on-street parking. “I didn’t like that idea at all,” said Ballard. “The businesses are the ones that are shouting the most… we didn’t want to see that happen,” he added.

Ballard lamented that Tigard does not have an official Bike Advisory Committee and that his organization isn’t yet powerful enough to have a strong voice on these issues.

The BTA, which has over 5,000 members and represents all of Oregon, issued a prepared statement. Here it is in its entirety:

“We are very concerned about the provision that removes the requirement for bicycle lanes on these streets. We’re speaking with Tigard planners and elected officials to learn more about their plan for bicycle circulation downtown given this action, and we’re also analyzing potential legal implications of the decision.”

As for legal implications, the BTA is likely referring to the Bicycle Bill that states any major road project must include bike facilities. However, since these collector streets are city of Tigard property, not the state of Oregon’s, Bewersdorff says the Bicycle Bill does not apply.

— Download the full text of the ordinance as passed by Tigard City Council here (PDF).

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor)

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor)

Founder of BikePortland (in 2005). Father of three. North Portlander. Basketball lover. Car owner and driver. If you have questions or feedback about this site or my work, feel free to contact me at @jonathan_maus on Twitter, via email at maus.jonathan@gmail.com, or phone/text at 503-706-8804. Also, if you read and appreciate this site, please become a supporter.

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Lance P.
Lance P.
14 years ago

This is just one more reason why I won’t work or live in Tigard.

Snowflake Seven
14 years ago

Wow.

One of these streets is the downtown Tigard Trimet WES and Bus transit center (on Commercial).

There is something very hostile about this move.

ValkRaider
ValkRaider
14 years ago

However, since these collector streets are city of Tigard property, not the state of Oregon’s, Bewersdorff says the Bicycle Bill does not apply.

I think that is not entirely true, depending on where the funding comes from. If they use state $$$ then it is my understanding that they must comply with the bicycle bill.

Of course I could be wrong.

R-diddly
R-diddly
14 years ago

Funny how these people in Tigard and Salem, when looking for a way to revitalize their downtowns, immediately turn away from bikes, one of the proven best ways of revitalizing a downtown, and toward cars, which consistently kill and degrade downtowns and make them places no one wants to be in.

I think the more appropriate and effective way for BTA or anyone to approach either of these sticky wickets would be to point out the above (i.e. how “bikes” help them achieve their own goal) rather than let’s say, the old “bicyclists want this, bicyclists need that” tactic that no one other than bicyclists supports, and that needlessly polarizes it into bikes vs. cars AGAIN.

BURR
BURR
14 years ago

bike lanes – and cycle tracks – are certainly not a panacea for cyclists, and in many instances can actually create more new hazards for cyclists (doorings, right hooks, etc.) than they mitigate.

I have never been in favor of bike lanes on the downtown grid in Portland, because the safest place to ride is really in the middle lane, away from all the dooring and hooking hazards in the outer lanes.

buzz
buzz
14 years ago

I am certainly glad that I do not live in Tigard any longer. As far as revitalizing the downtown part? Good luck with that (not being sarcastic)! Pacific Highway is box store alley and people want to shop there instead of some mom and pop shop downtown.

naomi
naomi
14 years ago

Burr #5: I agree. I never ever ever use the bikelanes in downtown, I always take a “real” lane. Downtown bike lanes are open to all sorts of accident scenarios, definitely not worth the false sense of security they provide.

are
are
14 years ago

okay, so I am looking at the Googlemap and dragging the little orange guy down to the streets and following these four streets around, and I do not see anything here that would be improved by striping a bike lane — quite the contrary, in each case the right hand traffic lane is too narrow to share, and a cyclist should simply take the lane. putting a stripe down in this situation would force the cyclist to ride too far to the right and allow the motorist to pass too close. as is so very often the case, “infrastructure” (other than “share the road” signage and/or a sharrow) would be counter-productive. BTA should stay away from this kind of thing and focus on repealing 814.420.

BURR
BURR
14 years ago

once again the BTA and many here at BikePortland.org (unfortunately often including Jonathan) seem to just assume that any form of bike infrastructure must be a good thing for cyclists, without critically evaluating the potential negative impacts such infrastructure actually has on cyclists in the real world.

steve
steve
14 years ago

BURR is spot on.

We are talking about 4 streets outside of Portland. 4 streets that in no way need bike lanes and could arguably be made more dangerous for cyclists by adding them.

The BTA is starting to reek of desperation in their misguided attempts to remain relevant. Do any of you bandwagon jumping types understand that people who actually live, work, and commute in Tigard have spent time and thought on this?

wsbob
wsbob
14 years ago

“According to Bewersdorff, the addition of parked cars will calm traffic and the absence of a bike lane simply means that bikes can share the road with (now slower moving, in theory) cars.

“What we needed to have was parking as much as anything,” said Bewersdorff, “rather than freeways through the city.” Bewersdorff sees the code changes as an essential part of creating a vibrant “small town downtown center,…” msus/bikeportland

I haven’t been over to Tigard for so long. Bewersdorff’s comments make me want to ride over to get a sense of what the area those streets encompass is like now, so as to have something to compare to once it’s changed.

A means to calm traffic is not how I would tend to look at on street parking. Depends on the dynamics of the particular street, but on street parking can be dangerous and cause congestion. At least Bewersdorff seems to embrace the idea that bikes will just take the lane. Hope that motor vehicle drivers stuck behind a person on a bike riding slowly will be similarly receptive.

With on-street parking, a bonus for Tigard, is that the city will be able to install parking meters, and make money from people parking cars on the street.

SSLVR
SSLVR
14 years ago

Bike lanes are over-rated. They are often just a place for road debris to gather in my experience. True cyclists understand the rules of the road and can navigate cities without the safety-net of a bike lane.

The business’ of downtown Tigard should consider that cyclists are akin to pedestrians. It’s potential customers that could be riding by and window shopping. I know that I see/notice a whole lot more from the saddle of my bike, rather than the seat of my truck.
When I don’t have to worry about being run off the road, I am more likely to see and walk in to a store.

Hart
Hart
14 years ago

Tigard should move to Salem and they can diagonal park their auto-cars to their hearts delight.

Joe Adamski
Joe Adamski
14 years ago

Tigards decision is understandable, in the context of economic development. Apparently E.D. (no, not THAT) trumps their desire to promote non-motorized transport.

When your only tool is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail. If a car is the only means of transport you know,you will build your city for that car.

Forgive them, they know not what they do….

Brian Tang
Brian Tang
14 years ago

What’s the deal with Ballard’s desire for the lanes to be wide enough for bikes and cars to ride side-by-side? I hear that all the time from people in my town and I usually end up screaming at them that they’ve got the message of “share the road” all wrong. Personally, I would much rather have a very narrow lane that is easy for me to control. I actually feel most at risk when the lane is too wide for me to effectively occupy because I can usually expect a driver to pass me within-lane yelling at me to share the freakin’ lane like the sign says to (I’m temporarily living in New Haven, CT and we have green “BICYCLES SHARE THE ROAD” signs posted all over the place–the City expected people to read it as if there’s a period after “BICYCLES.” Still, most people interpret it as meaning bikes and cars should travel side-by-side).

So maybe there’s some logic behind sharing the travel lane, but I don’t see it. Can anybody explain Ballard’s point of view to me?

TS
TS
14 years ago

“On-street parking will be essential as the downtown redevelops to its intended dense form.”

Is it just me, or does dedicating a large amount of on-street area to what can only be described as dead space run counter to the stated goal of dense development?

I’d like to see the engineering analysis that says parking is the most effective form of traffic calming for that area. I’m sure there are much better ways to calm traffic, if that’s the desire. It kind of sounds like they want to emulate the Pearl District, and I think they’d be wiser and more effective to discourage automobiles from entering the downtown area, and instead make it pedestrian-friendly and aim for an almost outdoor mall-like atmosphere. Get people to downtown, then make them get out of their car.

Commercial interests are served less by cars because of the barrier they create between the business and the customer. Pedestrians are more exposed to the environment and marketing, and there’s essentially no barrier to just wandering in to a store to look around.

BURR
BURR
14 years ago

not that I necessarily agree, but a lot of pedestrian advocates like to make the claim curbside parking forms an important buffer between the sidewalk and the street.

IMO, a street that needs this sort of buffer (probably a busy arterial) is a pedestrian unfriendly street that I wouldn’t be walking on in the first place, curbside parking or not.

K'Tesh
K'Tesh
14 years ago

I work in Tigard, and I’ve been doing everything I could to get people to go to their city council (they don’t like listening to a cyclist from Beaverton). Want proof? Search “Tigard” in the forums.

It’s a shame to see that their shortsided city council has acted in this manner.

Cyclists in Tigard, if you want anything, you MUST get off your duff and go to one of these meetings. Don’t forget to register to vote, and remind your city council members that you have a VOICE!

Do not let your city council’s nay saying ways win in this issue!

mmann
14 years ago

I’m not nearly as concerned with the lack of a white stripe as I am with the “need” for on-street parking. To my mind, the best design would be wide one-way streets, low speed limits, and no on-street parking. That’s easiest for bikes and cars to share. If they have to have the on-street parking, do it like downtown Bend, with angled-in slots (no getting doored). Parking meters aren’t a bad idea either – keeps the driving to what’s essential.

Another Doug
Another Doug
14 years ago

Without regard to whether bike/ped facilities are necessary or desirable, Mr. Bewersdorff is flat out wrong in his understanding of the Oregon Bike Bill. Perhaps he should review ODOT’s discussion at . The requirement has nothing to do with whether it is state or City of Tigard property. Hopefully, the city council wasn’t relying on his erroneous interpretation when it made the decision.

K'Tesh
K'Tesh
14 years ago

One point that I think that Tigard’s city council is missing is how much they are positioned to take advantage of the connection that they have from cycling.

The Fanno Creek Trail will eventually link into the 40 mile loop. You’d think that they’d want to invite cyclists to stay and explore their “revitalized” downtown, and perhaps spend a little money while there. If the cyclists feel unwelcome, they won’t come, they won’t stay, and they won’t put their dollars into Tigard’s pockets. I might not live in Tigard, but I vote by dollars.

The pub that Jonathan and I went to on our ride clearly was reaching out to cyclists. It was only because of the large bike rack in front that we decided to eat there. I wonder how their owners feel about the city council’s actions?

My guess is that the actions of the CURRENT city council will act as a turn off, and end up be an expensive lesson in how NOT to do things. How much will it cost to fix those mistakes.

Tigard NEEDS a Bike Advisory Committee!!!

Hal Ballard
14 years ago

To respond to Brian Tang’s inquiry as to “what is with” my “desire for the lanes to be wide enough for bikes and cars to ride side-by-side. It happens all the time.

Block after block, street after street, city after city, bikes and cars share the same lane.

You ride in bike lanes, don’t you? Are they not next to cars? Why does an 8” stripe make a difference? Must the whole lane belong only to you?

Your sense of risk (“I actually feel most at risk when the lane is too wide for me to effectively occupy’0 speaks only to your lack of confidence to ride as traffic.

As for the comments about automobile parking as traffic calming, as it has been mentioned by many, there is such an effect. All traffic must slow when a car is entering or leaving a parking space,especially with one lane.

Door zones? Scan ahead of you, looking in each rear window as you can to determine if someone is in the left seat (driver or passenger) about to make a move, if so, scan to your left and behind, signal and move out to control traffic in your lane.

Simple enough, huh.

vequinox 6
vequinox 6
14 years ago

Bike lane or no bike lane, it is pretty congested in this area. Anything to slow down the traffic is a good thing. If I am on main st, I usually end up pushing my bike on the sidewalk because of the traffic, and no room on the street for bikes.

Lazy Spinner
Lazy Spinner
14 years ago

Here we go again! This is a very small section of Tigard that most of you will never venture to since most here would rather have their fingernails pulled out with pliers than venture to the ‘burbs. So what’s the big deal brave Portland cyclists?

Secondly, if the traffic is controlled by signals at a speed of 10-12 MPH then bikes and cars can coexist. Let’s be brutally honest for a moment, if you cannot maintain that velocity for a couple of blocks then I contend that you should not be riding on the street. If you are that fearful of riding with slow moving traffic then you shouldn’t be on those streets either. This is no different than new drivers (or some senior drivers) who have difficulty processing information at high speeds. If you are too tense to focus or think that 40 MPH is “bat out of hell” type speed, then don’t get on the freeway.

Cars are here to stay. They may become plug-ins, run on natural gas, get powered by hydrogen but they will still be the preferred mode of transport for most of our population (an aging population at that!). Planners must take that into account and not all development can be all car or all bike. This will never be Amsterdam, get over that fantasy.

fredlf
fredlf
14 years ago

Nothing revitalizes a downtown like hundreds of cars endlessly circling looking for an on-street parking spot. /sarcasm

Note to Hal, like most confident, ride as traffic cyclists, I avoid the door zone by… avoiding the door zone (riding in the center of the travel lane far enough away from parked cars that a door won’t reach me.) It’s more than absurd to expect a cyclist to check through every rear window, if that were even possible (ever see a pickup truck with a shell on the back?).

E
E
14 years ago

Downtown streets don’t need bike lanes, esp. if they’re already narrow. However, depending on the speed and attitude of drivers, they may need packs of bicycles taking the lane for a few weeks until they learn how to behave themselves.

Street parking is actually better for bicycles than it is for businesses, or people in general. Slow moving cars looking for parking or pulling in or out of spaces are easier to deal with than speed demons just passing through. However, there’s all that lovely pollution and noise to deal with, not to mention the people who will just give up after a few turns around the block. Oh well.

BURR
BURR
14 years ago

getting cyclists to agree on anything is like herding cats. as a result others make the decisions for us.

Matt Picio
14 years ago

“On-street parking will be essential as the downtown redevelops to its intended dense form”

Wow, what remarkably backward thinking for a planning staff. This is completely in line with 1950s planning and completely at odds with New Urbanism.

I don’t know Dick Bewersdorff, but I think in this case he’s making a big mistake. Not only would on-street parking block sightlines and reduce cyclist safety, it would also make a more hostile environment for pedestrians. Tigard has a great opportunity here to put these roads on a diet, increase the pedestrian space and greenery, and provide an environment that people will want to walk and spend time in – exactly what you want in a high-density “vibrant” town center.

These changes will work directly against Bewersdorff’s stated goals.

“Bewersdorff said with limited roadway space and competing interests, there are always trade-off” (sic)

Well, if that’s true, then why is the recommendation of planning staff to remove all the aspects that enhance pedestrian and bicycle safety? Trade-offs imply balance, or at least a maximization of aggregate value. Where are the benefits to downtown and the community at-large? This doesn’t increase traffic flow, it reduces safety for all modes, creates additional unsightliness in the core, more exhaust and pollution, and ultimately will reduce the number of people walking dowtown and patronizing the businesses there.

BURR, steve – good point about the bike lanes – bike infrastructure isn’t proven to be effective. (neither is it proven to be ineffective – it may actually be less safe, but it does get more people on the street, which increases safety). However, wouldn’t you both agree that adding the on-street parking is a bad thing? More conflicts between road users, blocked sight lines, people stopping and backing up without signalling in order to parallel park – regardless of how one feels about bike lanes, the parking issue is a problem. It’s hostile to bikes and peds, it compromises safety, and it makes the street less pleasant and less liveable. The only good thing it does is reduce traffic speeds.

TS (#16) – Exactly. It becomes dead space which can’t be used for anything else, right in the middle of the zone that the city is trying to promote.

Jeff P
Jeff P
14 years ago

BURR and steve [9 and 10] are spot on. As are many of the early posts – this area needs a bike lane like most of us need another hole in our head!?!

Ride as the law already allows; it’s not that hard. Leave the bike lane/tracks for areas that have the space and are being newly developed so that it can be properly planned with efficiant impact and cost.

Matt Picio
14 years ago

Lazy Spinner (#24) – first off, I neither live nor work in Tigard, yet I’ve been through this area 6 times in the last year. What’s the big deal? Most cyclists in and around Tigard probably aren’t aware of this decision (now they might be), and those who are can be vastly outnumbered by the pro-car, pro-development interests. Portland’s “meddling” can be helpful in cases like this.

Secondly – it’s not an issue of speed. In fact, it’s probably more dangerous that all of this metal is moving at 10mph than if it was moving at 45mph. These streets are a complex environment of car traffic, cyclists, pedestrians, etc – with a high cognitive load and requiring people to be aware of what’s happening in multiple directions simultaneously. It’s fine and dandy to say people who are too tense shouldn’t get out on the freeway, but we’re not talking about the freeway, we’re talking about everyday streets in town with 10-12mph speeds. Extending your analogy, these people shouldn’t be allowed to leave their homes – clearly that would conflict with their rights.

Cars are not necessarily here to stay – neither are bikes, and that mentality is in large part the problem. They may not always be preferred, nor responsible modes of transportation. The transportation network must accommodate all modes equally rather than biased towards a priviliged few.

Adams Carroll (News Intern)
14 years ago

here are my thoughts on this…

To me, this isn’t about the pros/cons of a bike lane as much as about the precedent it sets for wiping out code language that makes sure bikes are accommodated for. also, i think it’s a window into the mindset of Tigard City planners when they think of redeveloping downtown and their first thought is to increase services (on-street parking) for people in single-occupancy vehicles.

it’s also worrisome because, going forward with development plans, Tigard has no strong voice for biking. They have dragged feet on starting a bike advisory committee even though several citizen advocates have encouraged them to do so, and the WashCoBTC has very limited power.

Kt
Kt
14 years ago

I’m a Tigard resident, and I work in the nearby city of Durham. I ride my bike and drive my car on the streets around here.

On Commercial, there is currently street parking (parallel). The lane is the perfect width for me to take the lane (and the speed limit low enough), and then widens out near the transit center. I have no problems with cars on this road. I also have no problems with buses on this road.

Burnham has no street parking. It has a lot of driveways and variable widths, and the street surface is basically patch after patch after patch. There is no contiguous pavement piece. The speeds are set higher on Burnham (35mph) than on Commercial (25mph). I take the lane on Burnham. I have never had a problem with cars on this road.

Main Street itself is posted at 20mph. I take the lane on Main St. There is no bike lane on either side of Main Street and there is on-street parking both of the parallel parking kind and the angle-in kind. I have never had a problem with cars, trucks, or buses on Main Street. I take the lane.

I have never taken my bike down Scoffins, but I have driven down Scoffins. It is narrow and twisty.

I have taken the Fanno Creek trail from Main St to Hall. It is a wide, continuous piece of pavement, with no cars, and I get to Hall just fine.

The problem with Tigard’s downtown area is this: currently, it is a bypass for Highway 99W. Scoffins is a bypass for people trying to get from Hall across Main St to somewhere else– Hwy 99W, Greenburg Rd, etc). It is also currently illegal (by City code) for cyclists to ride on the sidewalk on Main St.

Currently, there is no bicycle infrastructure in the downtown core area (Main St, Commercial, Burnham, Scoffins). Tigard St has a bike lane on the northbound side (leading away from Main St).

I have to say that while I do not agree with the City, I understand where they are coming from– the infrastructure currently isn’t there, and there hasn’t, apparently, been a need for it.

Now, as for “cyclists in Tigard needing to get to the meetings”: I’ve been to them. They are inconveniently and not regularly scheduled (fifth Tuesday of the month?? Seriously?), and not everyone is on the forums here to know when they occur. Hal, is there any way you can do something about that, through the WaCoBTC? We’re in your county, help us out here. Help us get organized.

99th Monkey
99th Monkey
14 years ago

Perspective from someone who ACTUALLY RIDES THROUGH TIGARD. I use Main street when going N Hwy 99, which has a bike lane, EXCEPT for the VERY dangerous 1/2 mile overpass that spans the 2 ends of Main/99 section, which only has a fog line and a pedestrian path, overgrown with blackberry bushes. The speed limit is 20MPH on Main, which I can comfortably maintain, but which few others can. As it is, without street-side parking, Main is not wide enough to share, so I take the lane. The City of Tigard would be wiser if they bought some commercial property, available from closed small manufacturing concerns, leveled the buildings and turned them into city parking lots. Other cities, albeit a little larger, have found that making parking available up to 2-3 block walking distance from shopping destinations has no significant impact on retail business. Wise move would be to build such a parking lot as close as possible to the Tigard Transit Center/WES station. I find, after living in the King City area, just a few miles S of Tigard that the entire area makes few if any decisions, either business-wise or transportation-wise, based up on it’s impact on bicycles. I would be willing to bet that the Tigard City Council members likely feel that the disconnected stretches of the Fanno Creek Trail and residential streets are the only places that bicycles should or do ride, and they are of the same mindset of a lot of smaller towns in the suburbs that view bicycles as recreational use only and not to be given any thought in transportation planning. I fought to 2 years to get an actual bike-parking staple installed at a strip-mall in King City that had parking for 800 cars but I was relegated to using a stairway handrail.

Big Marty
Big Marty
14 years ago

I’d appreciate if they would redirect some effort towards cleaning the gravel in the bike lane on 99. It’s always a mess.

99th monkey- I know that overpass. Freaks the crap out of me, but I still ride on it for who knows what reason. It would be nice if they did something about that as well.

Big Marty
Big Marty
14 years ago

Also, how cool would a MUP running the length of the WES track be? (There is already one running along it in Tualatin)

99th Monkey
99th Monkey
14 years ago

Oh, I forgot to mention, when taking the lane, as I do on Main St. in Tigard, I find that rarely if ever do motorists get upset. The speedlimit of 20 MPH is quite acceptable to all traffic conditions, what with 1 stop light and one stop sign over a length of about 8 blocks. Also, when I come to the intersection of Scoffins St. which has a dedicated right-turn lane, I maintain center lane of the left lane, into and through the intersection, which, when I worked downtown Portland years ago, is the same safe-riding technique I used riding N on 14th when coming to the Burnside St. intersection. We all remember too well the tragedy that happened there, what, now 2 years ago? I NEVER put myself to curbside of a right-turn lane, NEVER.

Lazy Spinner
Lazy Spinner
14 years ago

“In fact, it’s probably more dangerous that all of this metal is moving at 10mph than if it was moving at 45mph. These streets are a complex environment of car traffic, cyclists, pedestrians, etc – with a high cognitive load and requiring people to be aware of what’s happening in multiple directions simultaneously.”

Matt (#30) – We essentially agree on this. Bike lanes are not necessary in this section of Tigard for the reasons that you state. Just like drivers, cyclists have to contend and react to multiple “targets” in a traffic environment. Bike lanes here only create a false sense of security but do not absolve the rider of proper thinking / planning / reacting to traffic conditions.

Cyclists have the same responsibilities as drivers on the roads. If you are going to ride in traffic then you best have the skills and fitness to handle the conditions at hand. We require this of drivers. At no point did I advocate restricting anyone’s rights.

To Jonathan’s point, planners need to have some latitude to make development decisions even those those decisions may not make everyone happy. If bikes are the future as you seem to think, then Tigard may suffer for this. Let that happen through market choice. While I wholeheartedly support the current laws regarding bike infrastructure and new development, it seems a tyranny to force a bike agenda on EVERY project. Why not allow Tigard to skip the bike lanes downtown if they don’t make sense but use the dollars to improve a truly dangerous area elsewhere in the city? That seems more beneficial to the cycling public in my opinion.

Joe
Joe
14 years ago

#35 yes! that would be great. more i think about it i would love to get more and more
away from cars these days while riding!

K'Tesh
K'Tesh
14 years ago

99W unfortunatly is ODOT, and I’ve been trying (and been told one is supposed to be installed) a BIKES ON ROADWAY sign on the westbound approach of the viaduct.(matching the one on the eastbound approach).

Adams Carroll (News Intern)
14 years ago

Lazy Spinner,

To me, this isn’t about “a tyranny to force a bike agenda on every project”. This isn’t about bikes, per se, it’s about whether or not the City is providing transportation services to everyone (not just people who drive cars) in the most equitable way possible.

I like your idea of “skip the bike lanes downtown if they don’t make sense” and then use money elsewhere… but is that going to happen? That would have been a great thing for the City of Tigard to put in along with this Council decision on the amendments… but that hasn’t happened.

BURR
BURR
14 years ago

“On-street parking will be essential as the downtown redevelops to its intended dense form”

Wow, what remarkably backward thinking for a planning staff. This is completely in line with 1950s planning and completely at odds with New Urbanism.

Matt – This is exactly what the City of Portland is planning to do on SE Division Street.

David Haines
David Haines
14 years ago

When I asked him whether or not he feels the new code changes make downtown Tigard less appealing for people on bikes, he said, “I don’t think so, a lot of our staff members ride their bikes to and from city hall all the time, including some of the people involved in the decision.”

Tigard City Hall, incidentally, is on a street with bike lanes (SW Hall Blvd).

K'Tesh
K'Tesh
14 years ago

David Haines wrote…
Tigard City Hall, incidentally, is on a street with bike lanes (SW Hall Blvd).

And it’s also on one that doesn’t (SW Burnham).

SW Hall blvd BTW is an ODOT highway

John
John
14 years ago

As someone who lives in Tigard, and bikes everywhere, I don’t really have a problem with their decision.
As others have stated, the streets are narrow and the traffic is slow. I ride in the streets there and have never had a problem.
Parking is angled on a lot of main street so care is needed by drivers and cyclist alike. A bike lane just puts cyclist closer to cars that would have trouble seeing you.
If Tigard needs to do something is support of cycling, it would be better to put more bike racks in like Max’s Brewpub has.

BURR
BURR
14 years ago

I would certainly agree that more bike parking is a significantly more important improvement than more bike lanes, just about anywhere.

Matt Picio
14 years ago

Big Marty (#34) – they may not be able to, 99W is a state highway, and is ODOT’s responsibility unless ODOT has farmed out the road maintenance to the local jurisdiction (city or county).

i.e. it’s probably an ODOT issue, not City of Tigard.

Lazy Spinner (#37) – it’s not a bike agenda, it’s equal access. Bicycles and pedestrians have a right to equal access to the transportation system, and the free market does not provide for that. like democracy, it becomes a tyranny of the majority that restricts the rights of less common modes in order to fulfill the conveniences of the dominant mode. That’s elitist, divisive, and inequitable.

We agree that bike lanes aren’t necessary in Tigard. I disagree with your contention that we require skills of drivers – that’s true when the initial license is issued, and then never again. We do not require skills of cyclists, and that’s a wholly separate issue. As operators of the heavier and more dangerous mode, drivers should absorb a greater share of the responsibility and liability – driving is still a privilege, not a right. Cyclists should absorb a greater share of responsibility and liability than pedestrians.

K’Tesh (#39) – talk to Basil Christopher ( basil.r.christopher “at” odot.state.or.us ) – if he doesn’t know, he can find out.

BURR (#41) – thanks for the info – I haven’t heard about that but will check into it.

BURR
BURR
14 years ago

Matt – Here’s the link to the Division Vision Plan. See discussion of Alternative 2a on page 30, my understanding is that this is shaping up to be the preferred alternative.

http://www.portlandonline.com/shared/cfm/image.cfm?id=108541

El Biciclero
El Biciclero
14 years ago

Uh-oh…better get shar-rows.

Haven’t read all the comments above, but it seems like painting sharrows or putting up some signage that alerts drivers that bikes belong in the street should be a minimum compromise to doing away with other bike accommodations.

Also, on sharing: Why do so many people think that sharing means “simultaneous usage”. At the grocery store, all the customers “share” a limited number of checkers (or self-check stations). Does that mean everyone crowds around and gets all their groceries scanned at once and piled into a jumble? No–it means they take turns. Serial possession is just as much “sharing” as parallel possession.

Kt
Kt
14 years ago

K’Tesh, a correction: Hall is a state road, not necessarily a highway. Same with Upper Boones Ferry.

But yes, Tigard’s City Hall sits on a street with a bike lane and one without– and it also sits on the Fanno Creek Trail.

Ok, not literally; it sits next to it. 🙂

Kt
Kt
14 years ago

Matt, #46, we aren’t saying that bike lanes are needed in the city of Tigard; we’re saying that on the roads specified in JM’s article, bike lanes are necessarily needed.

There’s still plenty of roads in the city of Tigard that need bike lanes; McDonald, for instance, and Durham Rd, and Bull Mt and Beef Bend, and 121st, the rest of Walnut, Tiedemann, Tigard Rd, etc etc etc.