Urban Tribe - Ride with your kids in front.

Portland non-profit will move offices with only foot power

Posted by on July 9th, 2010 at 4:31 pm

Puppet parade bike move

Moving by bike is one thing…
but by foot?!
(Photo © J. Maus)

Bike moves are old hat in Portland. A quick check of the BikePortland archives shows that I first wrote about them way back in April of 2005. Since then there have been hundreds of bike moves in this town, so many that they’ve actually become quite common. And these days, thanks to the rise of cargo bikes, they’ve nearly gone mainstream (at least in Portland).

But a foot move? I had never even considered such a thing until I checked my inbox today and saw an email to the Shift list from the leader of the Willamette Pedestrian Coalition (WPC), Steph Routh.

They’re moving their office 10 blocks and they’ve decided to do it by foot. Here’s a snip from Routh’s email:

“Because we are an organization that promotes active transportation, the idea of moving with cars or trucks was definitely Plan Z. I suggested a bike move because, well, they’re incredibly fun, easy, and a known quantity. After a little discussion with Board members and a few volunteers, though, we decided that a pedestrian advocacy organization should move on foot. This might be a first for a Portland-based organization, so come and help us make active transportation history…”

Routh says “it will be a stuff parade”. If you’d like to join them, bring your wagons, hand-trucks and big backpacks to be a part of the fun. (Bikes and trailers are also welcome of course.)

    WPC Move on Foot
    Tuesday, July 13th
    711 SE Grand Ave.
    Meet at 6:45 to pack up; depart 7:30pm
    Thanks and Snacks at the end of the parade at 8th & SE Main.

NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are productive, considerate, and welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Thank you — Jonathan

  • Refunk July 9, 2010 at 4:41 pm

    Okay, Jonathan. Did I miss it or is there no day given for this parade?

    From the SHIFT calendar, the date appears to be Tuesday, July 13th.


    Sorry Jene-Paul. I forgot the date. I’ve added it. You’re correct. It’s 7/13. –Jonathan

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  • Kronda July 9, 2010 at 4:45 pm

    Is it really at night or should that read 7:30AM?

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  • BURR July 9, 2010 at 4:51 pm

    keeping portland wierd…

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  • Paul Tay July 9, 2010 at 5:03 pm

    Keep PDX fun…

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  • todd July 9, 2010 at 5:42 pm

    foot moves are to bike moves as twitter is to facebook. next will come non-moves, or squats, as the ultimate expression of sustainable localism. after all, if not for The Man, nobody would ever move.

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  • 151 July 9, 2010 at 5:48 pm

    I understand the importance they place on literally walking the talk, but I don’t see why they couldn’t do a mixed mode move. Bicycles and pedestrians can and should be friends, we have the same interests.

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  • VelvetAckbar July 9, 2010 at 8:32 pm

    Hippo hardware did this 20 years ago: http://www.portlandtribune.com/news/print_story.php?story_id=16175

    It should be kinda cool, tho.

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  • Jerry_W July 10, 2010 at 12:12 pm

    This is as silly as UPS using bikes to delivery packages. Get a life.

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  • Red Five July 10, 2010 at 4:27 pm

    awww get a U-Haul get the move done and spend the rest of the time drinking beer.

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  • Refunk July 11, 2010 at 2:33 am

    Okay, Jerry W @ 8,

    I did a season dropping packages for UPS from a bike & trailer: So, why was it silly?

    The packages were staged by a van driver at a drop point where I would load up the trailer and swing out to the surrounding apartment/condo complexes, repeating until all were delivered (2-3 load cycles). In the middle of holiday season with really long work days, my driver seemed to appreciate that there were up to a hundred+ fewer drops he had to make each day (not to mention, it kept that huge van out of the complex driveways, etc.).

    If you are actually a driver who’s participated in the UPS bike thing, well, speak on. While I definitely observed some resistance to the idea while working with ’em (in Vantucky), there were also positive statements about satisfaction & potential development among the crew, too. The bike delivery was mostly focussed on high density, closely-spaced delivery patterns in time-intensive settings (i.e., Driver & Helper time going down hallways & stairs, start/stop short-interval driving & parking movements) and apparently it works well enough that it has been practiced elsewhere for a long time – Europe, US east coast, etc.

    Yer comment seems like comparing apples to potatoes or something, y’know?

    Maybe Ms Routh & the WPC are trying to both make a statement and and also jazz up an otherwise mundane task? Uh, wouldn’t that qualify as choosing yer own life? (“Get a life.”) Pretty sure they’re not recommending that this become a community norm, inasmuch as everyone knows that a move often involves stuff which is too heavy or bulky for pedestrians to manage for long. And yeah, I’ve done bike moves, too: it’s always been more fun than any truck move.

    I’m sure they wouldn’t turn you away if you showed up to help on Tuesday.


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  • Steph Routh, WPC July 11, 2010 at 9:11 am

    UPS has a bike delivery service? That’s great, Jene-Paul, I had no idea. Thanks for the info.

    Kronda, it is, indeed, 7:30pm. Whatever we can’t get in one load, I can probably get in a second, so I believe we’ll be done by sunset.

    @151 (#6), bike trailers are welcome! Walking the bikes will keep everyone together and make it more fun.

    @Red Five (#9), I’ve actually found that bike moves are faster than car moves, and hopeful moves on foot are similar. Plan B is conveniently located across the street from the move’s finish line, so there will be no shortage of post-move frothy beverages.

    I’ve done over 35 bike moves in Portland over the past few years, but moving on foot is a new one, and we’ll be grateful for all the hands (and feet) we can get for this kinetic experiment.

    Thanks for the posting, Jonathan!

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  • Ely July 12, 2010 at 5:09 pm

    It’s possible steph routh is the coolest person I have ever met. 🙂

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  • Anonymous July 13, 2010 at 12:09 am

    SCRAP moved a similiar distance in this manner in Jan. 2004,(from their old-old Miss. Ave. location to their now-old Williams Ave. location) so it is not unprecedented, but it is certainly rare enough to be noted, lauded, supported, and hopefully imitated. Yay to Steph and the WPC!

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  • D.R. Miller July 13, 2010 at 12:10 am

    SCRAP moved a similiar distance in this manner in Jan. 2004,(from their old-old Miss. Ave. location to their now-old Williams Ave. location) so it is not unprecedented, but it is certainly rare enough to be noted, lauded, supported, and hopefully imitated. Yay to Steph and the WPC!

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