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The Monday Roundup

Posted by on July 2nd, 2012 at 8:01 am

“…biking and walking save money, promote better health than sitting in a car, and ease traffic congestion, which makes the city more livable for everyone. Opponents of bike and walking paths are going to have come up with a better reason than an ominously named UN document.”
— The Economist

Here’s the news and other cool stuff that caught our eyes this past week…

The Tour de France kicked off this past week, and so did the epic journey of six women (including two from Portland) riding the route one day before the men as part of the Reve Team.

– A study from Canada, presented at the Velo-City conference, clearly shows traffic diversion is essential for safety on residential streets and looks at the relative safety of other infrastructure.

– Officials have yet to issue any citations after a man driving a pickup and a woman riding a bicycle collided in a crosswalk in Hillsboro.

– A wild conspiracy theory regarding urban design and a decades-old, non-binding UN resolution has gained enough attention among the right-wing fringe to warrant a smackdown by the venerable news magazine The Economist.

– The benefits of bike share systems extend beyond the people who use the system, and the justification for subsidizing bike shares’ operation can be summed up with a simple equation.

– Speaking of the benefits of bike share, shop owners in Washington DC are seeing a boom in business from customers who rediscovered bicycling for transportation after using the city’s bike share system.

– This past Sunday AAA expanded the coverage area of its bicycle service, currently available in Oregon and southern Idaho, to include Washington state.

– It’s great to see a light-hearted take on the serious issue of helmet use, especially when it comes along with a series of darkly humorous photographs mocking media coverage of traffic collisions.

– Sydney, Australia has seen ridership jump by an incredible 82% after installing and improving bikeways around the city.

– For many people, summer means longer bike rides so there’s no better time to take special care of your derrière (or to read an excellent review of chamois creams).

– Police officers in Portland are supportive of bike rides, including the annual World Naked Bike Ride, but police officers in other cities don’t seem to know what to think of naked people on bicycles.

– One juvenile court judge in Lake County, OH includes a bike ride in an “intensive outpatient drug and rehabilitation program” for teen offenders with drug and alcohol issues.

– The owner of a pawn shop bought back a stolen bicycle, worth over $10,000, at his own expense and helped reunite the bicycle with its rightful owner.

– Prisoners in Brazil can have their sentence reduced by riding bicycles hooked up to battery chargers, getting a reduction of a day for every 16 hours on the bikes.

– As the weather gets warmer, women wanting to wear summer dresses might want to check out this two-part guide on how to successfully ride a bicycle in a long dress.

Beijing and Copenhagen are officially sister cities, marking the start of a relationship that could help the dense Chinese city learn how to smartly address urban transportation issues from the world-renown Danish capital.

– “The new standard for bicycle safety” is apparently a rear-view camera which mounts to the seat post and handlebars, giving people on bicycles a way to look out for anyone about to run them down from behind.

– A young woman out for a bike ride was arrested after she noticed police officers were issuing citations for speeding and began warning people driving cars about the “speed trap”.

– Construction of a fanciful bicycle shop and cafe with a rooftop velodrome could soon begin in southern China.

– The sometimes-sardonic math, science, and tech comic xkcd has its own witty take on traffic safety.

– You might enjoy taking a look at this series of photographs depicting people on invisible bicycles.

– Ernest Gagnon has become an inspiration to many after he lost 200 lbs and overcame crippling anxiety by going on rides with local racers.

– Another example of how bicycling can change a life, Randee Sue has been paralyzed from the waist down since she was young but goes for a bike ride almost every day:

– And finally, check out this incredible video of artwork drawn with bicycle tire skid marks:

— Did you find something interesting that should be in next week’s Monday Roundup? Drop us a line. For more great links from around the web, follow us on Twitter @BikePortland.

NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. BikePortland is an inclusive company with no tolerance for discrimination or harassment including expressions of racism, sexism, homophobia, or xenophobia. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Also, if you comment frequently, please consider holding your thoughts so that others can step forward. Thank you — Jonathan

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AlainA.K.GlowBoyq`TzalChris I Recent comment authors
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That piece in the Economist is hilarious and includes lots of nice turns of phrase.

Chris I
Chris I

I despise the word “speed trap”. Can we call them “criminal nets”? And why in God’s name would a woman on a bike warn drivers, thus encouraging their lawbreaking speeding habits?


“Officials have yet to issue any citations after a man driving a pickup and a woman riding a bicycle collided in a crosswalk in Hillsboro.” vanlue/bikeportland

hmmm…I wonder what the reasons might have been for officials not having issued a citation to individuals in this collision…Oh look! Here’s a line from the Oregonian story itself that seems to offer one possible reason: Note, ‘…is investigating…’.

“…Police have not issued any citations, and the Washington County Crash Analysis Reconstruction Team is investigating.” woolington/oregonian


The xkcd reminded me too much of this little gem:
The aircar rocketed them at speeds in excess of R17 through the steel tunnels that lead out onto the appalling surface of the planet which was now in the grip of yet another drear morning twilight. Ghastly grey lights congealed on the land.

R is a velocity measure,defined as a reasonable speed of travel that is consistent with health,mental wellbeing and not being more than say five minutes late. It is therefore clearly an almost infinitely variable figure according to circumstances,since the first two factors vary not only with speed taken as an absolute,but also with awareness of the third factor. Unless handled with tranquility this equation can result in considerable stress,ulcers and even death.

R17 is not a fixed velocity,but it is clearly far too fast..


Can someone remind me of all the places in Portland to go to watch the Tour de France? I know St Honore is one place, but it seems like some bike shops, coffee houses and bars are doing this too?


The results of the Canadian study are curious. The only types of facility where observed risk was substantially higher than perceived risk were MUPs, but I am surprised that perceived risk was quite high for sidewalks, as it should be.

The one that really surprised me, though, was that cycletracks were the only facility type where observed risk was far, far lower than perceived risk. I thought one of the US-based criticisms of Dutch cycletracks was that they still had relatively high crash rates where they cross paths with cars? Did the Canadian study include a very small / non-represenative sample of cycletrack facilities, or is the anti-separate-facilities propaganda just plain wrong?


Great conclusion in the Economist story:

“But biking and walking save money, promote better health than sitting in a car, and ease traffic congestion, which makes the city more livable for everyone. Opponents of bike and walking paths are going to have come up with a better reason than an ominously named UN document.”


Velo Cult over in the Hollywood district is showing it every day at 5 am and 5 pm.
Plus they have beer taps!
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Thanks A.K.!

Mountain stages next week!