Posted by Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) on July 27th, 2010 at 8:40 am
Following a public meeting last week, Rick Bradford, the man behind a grassroots effort to get PBOT to remove the new buffered bike lanes on SE Holgate Blvd., remains unswayed in his opposition.
Bradford has posted an update on RestoreHolgate.com where he accuses PBOT of spinning the issues and facts at the Thursday night meeting that drew a standing room only crowd at Holgate Baptist Church. Saying the lanes are an “Adams sponsored blunder” (a reference to Portland Mayor Sam Adams) that have been “forced upon” their neighborhood, Bradford also calls into question the baseline data PBOT brought to the meeting.
Here’s a snip from RestoreHolgate.com:
With facts and figures that they admitted weren’t accurate, they told us of how much safer our street is now. A lot of bike riders as well as automobile drivers found that hard to swallow.
Speaking of hard to swallow, the city reports a bicycle traffic count of 196 bikes per day! Of course, they only counted one day. From my own un-scientific observations, I have never seen anything close to that, on any given day. There must have been a bike parade that day.
At the meeting, PBOT’s head traffic safety staffer Mark Lear said their traffic count was done with video cameras. I don’t recall which “facts and figures” were admittedly not accurate, but here is the data PBOT says they’ve collected so far (taken from handouts of PBOT’s presentation at the meeting, which you can download here) .
Traffic Speeds (all data reflects change from 2008 to after bike lanes were installed)
– 1,204 fewer cars per day 38-44 mph
– 401 fewer cars per day 44-49 mph
– 60 fewer cars per day 50+ mph
– After controlling for volume changes, the percentage of speeders decreased by 19%.
Traffic Volumes (Daily motor vehicle trips on Holgate at 107th)
– 2008: 15,305
– 2010 (after bike lane installation): 12,762
– 17% reduction
Delay to Corridor Travel Time (using TriMet bus GPS data)
– Travel times for buses both eastbound and westbound on Holgate between 92nd & 122nd increased between 15 to 20 seconds between April 2009 and April 2010.
– Travel times for buses both eastbound and westbound on Powell between the Trimet garage and 122nd Ave increased by less than 15 seconds between April 2009 and April 2010.
PBOT will conduct an analysis of the project over the next six months. In addition the criteria above, PBOT will also evaluate the amount of time delay vehicles experience at a stop sign trying to enter Holgate from a side street. The safety of people on bicycles will also be evaluated based on how many crashes are reported, a survey of people riding in the bike lanes, and overall bike traffic volumes.
Since the stated purpose of this project was to reduce motor vehicle speeds and provide a higher level of comfort for people using bicycles, a reduction in speed will be seen as a key measure of “positive impact.” As for motor vehicle volumes, if traffic is diverted from Holgate onto neighborhood streets, that would be seen as a “negative impact.” The results of this evaluation will be presented in a neighborhood meeting scheduled for February 2011.
Regardless of the evaluations, for some residents the only solution is to return the street to its previous, four standard vehicle lane configuration. David Lentz, owner of the Lentz Automotive repair shop on the corner of Holgate and 104th, told me Thursday that he’ll file a lawsuit against the city — on the grounds of lost property value — if the bike lanes remain.
As for Bradford, he’s offering this solution:
“Eliminate on-street parking on SE Holgate for the entire length of the bike lane. Move the bike lanes to the shoulder… same width. This eliminates the riders fears of opening car doors, it restores Holgate to is [sic] previous lane configuration…. and we all go home happy.”
See previous coverage of the Holgate bike lanes here.