Talk, listen, learn at SW Portland Get Together tonight

Posted by on January 26th, 2011 at 11:49 am

A bit of guerrilla marketing
by our friend Kiel Johnson!

I hope some of you will stop by Macadam’s Bar and Grill (5833 SW Macadam Ave) tonight for the first Get Together of the year. We’ll learn about bike issues, meet others who care about bicycling, give out some great prizes (thanks to our Get Together sponsor, SKS), and hopefully, begin to build a more connected community.

The event will be a mix of listening and speaking up. I’ll introduce you to experts, advocates, and neighborhood activists and we’ll listen to their insights. And, if you’d like to, you can share your experiences, tips, and tricks about riding in the area. We’ll chat about the good, the bad, and the ugly issues that define the bicycling experience in Southwest Portland.

Speaking of issues, there’s a ton of stuff we can talk about…

Metro’s $2 million SW Corridor Study
The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) just awarded Metro $2 million to study a potential high-capacity transit corridor along the “SW Corridor” (focused on SW Barbur). I asked Metro’s Tony Mendoza if bicycle improvements might play a role in their study. He said they absolutely will. “We told them [the FTA] that we’d gather additional bicycle data above and beyond what the plan calls for.”

In a nutshell, while Metro will be considering transit alternatives in this study, it’s a major opportunity to get the needs of bicycling addressed as well.

Action in the South Waterfront District
About one year ago, the US DOT awarded Portland $23 million to reconstruct SW Moody. Last time I checked, that project comes with what is likely to be our city’s very first two-way cycle track.

Taming SW Barbur Blvd.
No one needs reminding that SW Barbur Blvd has some major transportation safety issues. I’m hoping we’ll have someone at the event from the local neighborhood association that has been tracking these issues — and begging ODOT to do something about them — for years. We’ll also have Kiel Johnson with us to answer your questions. He’s part of a duo of activists that launched a grassroots effort to improve the street called “Friends of Barbur” last year.

The SW Active Transportation Project
The day after our event, neighborhood leaders will get together to discuss a nascent strategy to improve active transportation in southwest Portland. To brush up on that, and many other active transportation issues in southwest, read this backgrounder from veteran neighborhood advocate Don Baack that we published yesterday.

OHSU’s evolving and growing bike culture
OHSU is one of our state’s largest employers — and they have hundreds of employees, students, and staff that get their by bike. I’m sure we’ll have someone from OHSU in attendance to talk about the good, bad, and the ugly about biking on the hill.

What do you want to talk about (the discussion has already started)? Bring your insights tonight and get ready for a great event.

BikePortland Get Together – SW Portland
5:30 – 7:30 at Macadam’s Bar and Grill (5833 SW Macadam)
Note: The location is about 3 miles south of downtown Portland. See Google Bike Directions here.

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I ride up and down Barbur every day but can’t make it to this meeting. I’d really love it if PDOT could repaint some of the lines on the southbound side of the road.


Would love to go… but got class tonight. Nutz!


I, too, ride Barbur every day, and I’ll be there. Looking forward to sharing my experiences and connecting with everyone!

Kevin Wagoner

I ride Barber most days so I’m excited to go tonight and meet some of the people you mention.


Attended for first time. Wow.

I can’t imagine any other way to be in the same room with as many local, working bike infrastructure professionals (PBOT, ODOT) & experienced advocates at one time! The speakers all delivered the goods and did not shirk any questions asked. Lot of info about current & future projects.

The knowledgeable chatter alone after the presenters sat down was worth the trip. It was even during Happy Hour…

My take-away conclusions: If enough people make a ruckus in the right place, things get done and, every little bit of input to the gov’t organizations which build things and to positively present the cause to our neighbors, adds up.

Good job, Jonathans! Thanks.