Urban Tribe - Ride with your kids in front.

Four years later, large trucks still use SE Caruthers bike lanes as loading zones

Posted by on August 27th, 2012 at 4:16 pm

trucks near Springwater entrance-2.jpg

This photo, taken in July 2008, shows how large trucks use the bike lanes on SE Caruthers as loading zones. This practice forces people walking and biking between the Esplanade and the Springwater paths to use the middle of the roadway. Unfortunately, the problem persists. (This photo is looking north on SE Caruthers toward SW 4th.)
(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)

The gap in the shared-use path between the end of the Eastbank Esplanade just south of OMSI and the start of the Springwater Corridor Trail has been a thorn in the side for people who ride bikes for years. The area has been the site of numerous police enforcement actions targeted at people on bicycles. While those haven’t happened for a few years, one problem that has not gone away is how the bike lanes on SE Caruthers get completely blocked by large trucks who use them as loading zones for nearby businesses.

I shared this problem for the first time in July of 2008. Back then there was a major construction zone set up in the area, so some people felt the problem might go away when construction was done. But it hasn’t. Readers who ride by the area daily tell me the problem persists and remains an issue.

The photos below were sent in by reader Keith Walker last week…

Walker rides through the Esplanade/Springwater gap every day. He says “No Parking” signage exists in the area, but they are hard to see. Here’s more from Keith via email:

“Further, where the signs aren’t, that is where the trucks are likely to park – which is the corner of 4th and Caruthers, in the southward direction.

Due to the nature of the businesses, I suspect many truck drivers are from out of town and they don’t know better.

Thursday morning was particularly bad as there was a truck parked opposite in the north bound lane on 4th in addition to the two trucks in the southbound lane (see my photos). This cuts down on the road width and visibility of the intersection and as you know, many cyclists don’t come to a full stop at the 4th & Caruthers stop sign.

Add in the construction truck traffic and the temporary road closures due to the Milwaukie Max extension, the new station at OMSI and the rail museum; you could have the perfect storm of many little hazards building into a serious accident.”

Chad Berkley says he has called this problem into the City of Portland’s 823-SAFE hotline several times; but has yet to see any changes and/or enforcement as a result. “The city seems very slow to do anything about large, commercial vehicles using bike lanes as loading zones,” Berkley shared with me recently. “If, say, a large group of cyclists (critical mass, ahem) was blocking a major street, I’m sure they’d be right on that.”

There are several industrial companies in this area that take delivery of products and materials from large trucks. Ross Island Sand and Gravel, SK Northwest (personal watercraft and ATV retailers), McCoy Millwork (lumber/woodworking company), Oregon Wood Specialties, and others. Perhaps PBOT can do some direct outreach to those businesses to inform them about this issue. Walker says another idea would be to encourage PBOT to paint more conspicuous bike lane symbols and striping in front of some of the businesses.

For legal context, Oregon law states that motor vehicles are not allowed to travel on bike lanes, except (as per ORS 811.560) “momentarily for the purpose of and while actually engaged in loading or unloading property or passengers.”

Have you noticed this issue? Do you think it’s a problem that needs attention? If so, what are your suggestions for fixing it? (The obvious answer is to just connect the path along the riverfront, but as we know, that’s easier said than done.)

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

  • Charley Gee August 27, 2012 at 4:33 pm

    The Apple Food trucks backed up to the warehouse just past 4th consistently block the bike lane along Caruthers as well.

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  • encephalopath August 27, 2012 at 4:34 pm


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    • 007 August 29, 2012 at 11:33 am

      LOL. But could be lucrative for a towing company.

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  • Duncan August 27, 2012 at 4:34 pm

    back when I biked here all the time, yes the bike lane was blocked about half the time. I just road in the street and when a truck honked at me (yes it happened) I told him I would get out of the road when his brethren quit parking in the bike lane. Now that I have a baby though I probably would not be so cavalier about it.

    I also called safe many times with no results, which is funny because when I called them about moptorists blowing the stop sign on my street there was a sting there the next week. You gotta wonder about who knows who on the city council

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  • jram August 27, 2012 at 4:41 pm

    What is the actual law regarding this? I was under the impression that blocking a travel lane for loading/unloading was actually allowed under Oregon law. I understand that it’s not ideal, but if my understanding of the law is correct (no promises on that) there isn’t a lot that can be done other than ask nicely or take the lane.

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    • Charley Gee August 27, 2012 at 4:45 pm

      ORS 811.560 does exempt motor vehicles but only for “momentarily” stopping.

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      • John Lascurettes August 27, 2012 at 5:19 pm

        And active loading and unloading of property or passengers. I suppose what constitutes “active” is what would have to be debated in court.

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      • q`Tzal August 27, 2012 at 7:48 pm

        Well as a trucker NOW what I’ve observed as “parking” for a large truck is taking your federally mandated 10 hour rest break.
        Anything less than that is usually ignored by police in every state UNLESS the truck’s location is an obvious immediate danger.
        NOTE: hazards obvious to cyclists may not be obvious to non-cycling police.

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    • Spiffy August 27, 2012 at 7:37 pm

      an earlier article that talked about an armored truck blocking a lane noted the “momentary” time to be about 30 seconds, or about as long as it takes the bus to make a stop…

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    • was carless August 27, 2012 at 7:42 pm

      My understanding of the law is that it is up to the politicians to set policy and the police have discretion as to enforcement.

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  • OnTheRoad August 27, 2012 at 4:42 pm

    Force the river-front property owners to complete the Willamette Greenway trail in this area. Portland Spirit et al.

    Then no detour required.

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  • Jim Kysela August 27, 2012 at 4:49 pm

    Ticketing – $80/whack. Instead of the SAFE hotline – what about trying PDX Parking Enforcement immediately at 503-823-5195? You need to ‘catch them in the act’, and also have the truck license # handy they’ll take the info down and try to get someone out there asap. The parking enforcement phone line is open at 7 am, just dial ‘0’ when you start into the phone menu maze. I’ve gotten somebody both courteous and professional the morning’s I’ve called recently.
    But I also worked with the business in question (in this case on N Interstate) and they’ve responded in a positive manner and taken action to relocate their delivery trucks off the sidewalk and bike lane there.

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    • Spiffy August 27, 2012 at 7:46 pm


      and outside of the parking hotline hours you can call PPD non-emergency to report parking issues… 503-823-3333

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  • Rol August 27, 2012 at 4:58 pm

    Those darn scofflaw truckers! They need to obey the laws just like everybody else! Why don’t they police each other?


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  • K'Tesh August 27, 2012 at 5:12 pm

    Hey K’Tesh,

    I’ve deleted your comment (and all the replies) because I think it’s completely inappropriate to encourage any act of mischief or vandalism against others. Thanks for your contributions to the community, but please think twice next time before sharing a comment like that. Thanks. — Jonathan

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    • Zach August 27, 2012 at 5:56 pm

      It should be obvious that it’s illegal. While sort of awesome, this would cause significant financial harm to the trucking company. Towing costs and shipping delays could run over a thousand dollars in come cases.

      Anyway: ORS 163.345 – “A person commits the crime of criminal mischief in the third degree if, with intent to cause substantial inconvenience to the owner or to another person, and having no right to do so nor reasonable ground to believe that the person has such right, the person tampers or interferes with property of another.”

      Pretty straightforward. If the activity causes more than $1000 in damage, it’s a felony. Don’t do it.

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    • K'Tesh August 27, 2012 at 8:37 pm

      Jonathan, I was kidding about the VSP… and I can remember several times that you have featured vandalism in a light hearted manner (like last week’s photo on the EB Esplanade). Heck, every time I drag out spray paint might be interpreted that way. Sometimes misbehaving is the necessary method of bringing about change (so long as nobody gets hurt, or real property damage results)

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      • q`Tzal August 27, 2012 at 9:46 pm

        PR Blitzkrieg!
        Setup a farmers market here and invite everyone.
        Massive bad PR for companies when they try to reclaim road that does not belong to them or they oppose something as good and wholesome as a local farmers market.

        It will be difficult to deal with this through normal legal methods. Instead attack from the side: public opinion. They have to be shown to be chronically bad neighbors.

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    • q`Tzal August 27, 2012 at 9:08 pm

      The truckers know no better and damage to their equipment only means the businesses here hire other truckers.
      The key is to fine the businesses for not providing off road loading and parking.
      I suggest an exponential public space leasing arrangement which should appeal to mercurial business types.
      How about:
      Businessman fine $ = (square foot used in public ROW / 10) * ((minutes used)^2/200)
      A 53′ trailer with truck comes to on average 70′ x 8.5′ or 595.
      For example:
      15 minutes parked: $66.94
      30 minutes parked: $276.75
      45 minutes parked: $602.44
      60 minutes parked: $1071

      Considering the size of one of these trucks a 15 minute quick in-and-out job is not absurd but would influence the companies to come with a better loading site. Long term utilization would be progressively more painful.

      And when they balk remember this word in the law: temporary. Most take it to mean temporary use of he road by individual trucks but here we find that the companies are intent to permanently use the road as a heavy industrial loading zone. This is very much no temporary.

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  • Ben August 27, 2012 at 5:47 pm

    Damn truckers, we need to make them get a license!

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  • Mike Fish August 27, 2012 at 6:12 pm

    Have a party to raise money for a BTA tow truck… impound lot could raise money…

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  • Aaron August 27, 2012 at 6:30 pm

    I don’t ride in the area, but this seems like a dumb place to put a bike lane/route.

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    • a different aaron August 28, 2012 at 8:01 am

      Maybe you should, and then you’d understand the problem and realize why the bike lane is there instead of somewhere else.

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      • Mike Fish August 28, 2012 at 2:46 pm

        It’s the route that connects the Springwater Corridor to the Eastbank Esplanade… so yeah, it’s a pretty darn important connection. Not putting bike lanes there would be pretty dumb.

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    • Chris I August 28, 2012 at 8:44 am

      Tell that to the business owners that won’t allow the city to build a 3-block long waterfront path to fill the gap on the springwater.

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  • jim August 27, 2012 at 6:42 pm

    I think it is nice that the trucks pull over instead of stopping in the street to unload.

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    • Mark Allyn August 28, 2012 at 2:41 pm

      There are neighborhoods in Boston and New York where cars and trucks double/triple/quadruple park, resulting in *no* passage for the road. I have seen cases where a pedestrian almost could not pass through because of lack of space because vehicles were parked five abreast on a city street.

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  • Kevin Wagoner August 27, 2012 at 7:00 pm

    I ride or run this section on average about 2 to 4 times a month. It is definitely and issue. I’m disappointed that it is not enforced more.

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  • lavie.lama August 27, 2012 at 7:13 pm

    I ride through here twice a day and see this several times a week. It’s kind of a confluence of a lot of factors here. The businesses in the area rely on the deliveries and these trucks obviously need somewhere to park, but it is a tight area and parking inside a highly populated active roadway specifically set aside for vulnerable roadway users is totally not acceptable. As it stands, there is really nowhere proper to stash a truck like that in that area.
    Any fix I can conceive of short of connecting the Springwater and the Esplanade would be a band-aid.
    Ultimately, the stodgy Portland Spirit dude is going to have to just deal with it.

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    • Spiffy August 28, 2012 at 7:40 am

      maybe the trucks can all park at Portland Spirit overnight when needed…

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    • matt picio August 28, 2012 at 11:53 am

      Well, a band-aid is still preferable to bleeding out – just saying.

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  • Spiffy August 27, 2012 at 7:42 pm

    If it wasn’t for the flawed citizen citation process we could issue a ticket to the owner of the truck… but since you need to get a clear look at the driver it’s never effective in situations like this… or in situations with tinted windows… or in situations where you’re cut off… or in most situations really…

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  • Tom August 27, 2012 at 7:48 pm

    OKAY ..slightly different area , but I ride se/ne 122nd on a regular basis …the car dealers new vehicles transporters always park in the bike lanes ..in front of the Taco Bell at NE122& San Raphel , delivery truck drivers (Pepsi is a repeat offender) park in the bike lane and then go in for a meal ..not even a pretext of deliveries.
    Can I snap photos and send to the correct office with any hope of a response ?

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    • Spiffy August 28, 2012 at 7:41 am

      if you email photos then by the time the cop gets there the vehicles will be long gone… call them up, or find out the violator’s schedule and try to get a cop there early…

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    • Art Fuldodger August 28, 2012 at 10:51 am

      City of Portland Parking Enforcement: 503.823.5195
      if after normal business hours, Police non-emergency line: 503.823.3333

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  • Sunny August 27, 2012 at 7:57 pm

    I just ask the driver to re-park and leave half the bike lane open. Takes about 1 minute.

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    • lavie.lama August 27, 2012 at 10:29 pm

      I tried that once very kindly with a truck driver parked in the bike lane downtown on Stark and he outright said that neither he nor his employer care, that his work is difficult, he’s underpaid, and I should get over myself. I don’t have the spirit to try to debate traffic law and etiquette with truckers in the middle of the street so I just rolled on.

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      • Spiffy August 28, 2012 at 7:43 am

        I bet if you had whipped out your cell phone and started talking to police about an illegally parked vehicle they would have moved…

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  • q`Tzal August 27, 2012 at 8:18 pm

    This will not be enforced for the same reasons that it has taken so long to do anything about the Broadway/ Wheeler problem.

    What we have in both areas are well entrenched industrial and commercial interests; both monetarily and historically.
    Both have old political ties to call on, support the local economy and job base and are otherwise good “commercial citizens”.
    Both areas were established when urban density problems were but a figment of delusion in the minds of other people; not them.

    But this is the problem playing out here, at Wheeler, on the Vancouver upgrade and everywhere else with growth: the new density makes the old use unsafe or incompatible.

    When I get routed in to an urban delivery I use aerial imagery (Google maps) to scout a safe way in and out. I can guarantee that at some point there used to be more places for the trucks to wait in line for loading or unloading. Invariably these little urban drops take their sweet time getting trucks in and out, rarely sticking to scheduled times. Or worse – a first come first served scrum. This leads to truckers showing up on time, not being able to leave without losing their place in line but having now where to park.

    I AM NOT SAYING THAT THIS IS RIGHT OR LEGAL! it simply is a symptom.

    At some point in the past the density model here supported large empty tracts of dirt to which truckers could park. This is no longer supported by the current or future use model.
    The only real definitive solution is to remove the incompatible use: heavy industrial in a dense human scale urban zone. This won’t happen either whether it is right or not.
    Even with draconian punishment of parking here the observation of clueless truckers is spot on: some will not know better and compliance may only reach 50%~75%.

    The solution that “works” elsewhere is to have a large empty lot very near (1/4 mile) and for the city to INSIST that trucks are brought on this street only when ACTUALLY loading. This is exactly how it would be handled if I had to unload my 53 foot trailer in the middle of the transit mall downtown; we deserve no less for cyclists.

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    • Psyfalcon August 27, 2012 at 10:04 pm

      What exactly are they doing in this case though?

      I haven’t seen anyone unloading from the street (and that would be… tiresome for trucks this size). There are plenty of businesses in the area that DO have lots for parking, and there are other streets where “half” of Portland’s SE bike commuters aren’t routed.

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      • q`Tzal August 27, 2012 at 11:07 pm

        No clue, it seems every company has their own eccentricity in shipping & receiving.
        I’ve never even driven a car here, let alone a truck.
        Parking a large truck requires more space than you think and there is far less available here than you think. Private property will get to towed fast. The public streets are narrow and blocks are short making on street truck parking an obstacle to safe travel by other large trucks.

        The trick is to get the companies to get those drivers to park elsewhere. Optimally, I’d drive up, park, go to receiving to log in as on site and give them contact info (CB, cell#) so I can be recalled when needed.

        Ultimately, these trucks would be totally legal if actual loading was occurring. We need to incentivize the companies to store idle truckers in either an on or off site lot. I described “the stick” above; I leave “the carrot” as an exercise for the reader.

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    • matt picio August 28, 2012 at 11:59 am

      This isn’t a density/growth issue. SE Carruthers has been effectively unchanged for 50+ years. Completely industrial, no residential nearby, next to rail and the viaduct. Yes, density is an issue, yes, use is an issue – but not THIS issue, not in this location.

      The problem is that the bike lane is in an industrial/heavy commercial area that is serviced by large trucks, and that no designated parking for those vehicles exists. A secondary problem is the lack of enforcement. There is no easy solution to problem A, though more and larger signage would help, as well as education of the employees of the businesses along the bike lanes. Problem B is simply a matter of becoming a squeaky wheel, and getting enough people to pester the mayor, the council, and the PPB until enforcement is performed.

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  • Dave August 27, 2012 at 10:05 pm

    I ride this route every work day (M-F) all year long-the area overall is heavily trafficked and there is also construction between this area and OMSI (on the road and the Esplanade trail). I enter it daily from either Division or in rare cases the Springwater. Most of the time the truckers or workers in the area are kind and aware of cyclist. Right now it seems to be a wide enough area that most people don’t have too many issues. I believe as we approach the opening of the new commuter bridge and Portland trolly system it will need to be re-evaluated to ensure this area doesn’t become dangerous.

    Some ideas would be to have both of the bike lanes keep to one side of the street and have all traffic on the other side. It might be plausible since people coming off the Springwater are already riding a two lane path. If the two lane bike path continued off the springwater (including clear signage) then the vehicle traffic could enjoy the rest of the road way for driving and loading. Thoughts?

    Are there any plans in the works to make additional changes to the streets/paths?

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    • Spiffy August 28, 2012 at 7:47 am

      the two-way bike lane on one side is the best compromise yet…

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  • w August 28, 2012 at 6:49 am

    Get rid of the bike lane. If this is happening all the time, then why pretend. Put in some speed bumbs to slow down the bikers and cars at the problem stop sign. Put share the road signs all over the place and be done with it.

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    • q`Tzal August 28, 2012 at 8:23 am

      Speed bumps should be an easy sell to the government; there is no real through traffic here other that PEDs and bikes. This removes the “fire truck can’t get through” argument.
      There is no reasonable expectation for heavily laden trucks to transit through at speed because they have arrived at their destination.

      In faIn, all motor vehicles coming into this area are arriving at theit destination and should be slowing down to arrive and stop so there is no need for high speeds. There is no no need for Speed above 10 MPH or even 5 MPH.

      5 MPH seems reasonable not just because of the bicycle and pedestrian vulnerability issues but also large trucks causing blind spots and the general smallness of the areas a nice cheap quick interim solution we could put up some 5 MPH signs and

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      • q`Tzal August 28, 2012 at 8:34 am

        …continued (voice entry borked)

        … put up some 5 MPH signs, some very sharp small speed bumps to slow down the cars and lots of warning signs.

        Maybe paint the entire that entire section of the street green or something to make that part look different enough to spook every out of town driver that comes in there that something weird is happening and then you need to pay attention to signage and slow down.

        Pitch this to the businesses as a cheap interim solution while trying to find a way to fund a fly over bridge or path around the entire area for the MUP.

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        • W August 28, 2012 at 12:59 pm

          I should have said that the speed bumps are for the bikers who I guess blow through the stop sign, which is apparently one of the major problems. Agree speed might not be as much of an issue for the cars. I only go through this area every once in a while.

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          • q`Tzal August 28, 2012 at 2:01 pm

            Cyclist speed bumps should be the ADA raised bumps that are used to delineate the edges of surfaces.

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  • Henry August 28, 2012 at 7:43 am

    The ‘act of loading’ test just does not work in these pictures. It’s very difficult to unload a truck on that stretch of 4th. They are just parked, or waiting for a legitimate angle loading space to open up at a nearby business.

    Nearly every business there has off-street loading and parking space. The burden should be on them as well as their vendors.

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  • oliver August 28, 2012 at 8:13 am

    The problem only exists because bicyclers don’t come to a complete stop when cycling down Flint, or Interstate, or etc. ad nauseum.

    Seriously though, the real solution, due to the heavy traffic and obvious needs of the commercial enterprises down there is to move the path to the waterfront

    If someone gets hurt down there it’s squarely on Yates shoulders.

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  • J-R August 28, 2012 at 8:54 am

    Let’s just redefine this section as a woonerf, post it for 8 mph, enforce that limit, eliminate the bike lane and simply share this space.

    I’ve ridden this section for years including when it was gravel. This is one section of city street where I don’t think a deliniated bike lane is necessary. When using it on weekends, I see pedestrians and Bicyclists confused about where they should be anyway.

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    • spare_wheel August 28, 2012 at 8:58 am

      large trucks are not allowed in woonerven.

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    • davemess August 29, 2012 at 8:50 am

      So would you be willing to go 8mph? You guys are throwing out 5 and 8mph speed limits and I don’t think you’re realizing how much that would hurt cyclists too. Those are stupid slow speeds on a bike.

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  • Joe August 28, 2012 at 9:16 am

    I have waiting for someone to bring this up, ride it everyday. careful
    if you ride in this area. lotta weirdness with huge objects in the bikelane.

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  • Richard Allan August 28, 2012 at 9:36 am

    And a cyclist down this morning (about 8:50 a.m.) at SE 4th and Carruthers, being attended to by paramedics. I don’t know what happened.

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    • Indy August 28, 2012 at 12:02 pm

      Yeah saw that also. Thought of taking a picture and sending it into BP, but also thought that would be pretty crass.

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  • My Magic Hat August 28, 2012 at 9:45 am

    As much as I hate to say it, the law may be on their side just enough to have to let this one go. The exemption in ORS 811.560, “momentarily for the purpose of and while actually engaged in loading or unloading property or passengers.” In some places, this is an all-day occurrence involving multiple vehicles, loads, passengers, etc.

    We just might have to deal with it. Much in the same way that drivers have to deal with cyclists who legally use the primary lane when the bike lane is obstructed by such vehicles.

    We don’t want to push too much when people are just trying to do their jobs, especially when those people belong to one of the most influential unions in North America. We really don’t need to incite a Teamsters strike in Portland.

    We’re better off focusing on getting bike lanes for busy streets like MLK blvd. and Burnside, and lowering speed limits on smaller side streets.

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    • rain bike August 28, 2012 at 10:12 am

      Bike lanes on MLK?!? Why? Better/easier/safer options already exist in the blocks east and west. This is not where I’d want to spend my time/effort working to improve the cycling experience in Portland.

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      • Paul August 28, 2012 at 11:32 am

        Fine for recreation. What about the “getting to the store” experience? This where Portland falls on its face – there’s virtually no bike infrastructure on commercial corridors. If you can’t ride a bike to the shops, the restaurants, the barber shop, the post office, then what good are we?

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        • rain bike August 28, 2012 at 12:01 pm

          Still baffled. Every shop, restaurant, barber shop, or post office along MLK that I’d ever want to visit can already be easily accessed by bike from a side street. Granted, other commercial corridors may not have such access. But as far as MLK goes, my vote is to spend the money (and political capital) on something that isn’t so redundant.

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    • matt picio August 28, 2012 at 12:04 pm

      I disagree. “Active loading” means the back door of the truck is open, and someone is actually putting something in or taking something out of the truck. If you want to debate “active loading”, let’s look at Portland International Airport. It is illegal to sit in the loading/unloading lanes at the terminal unless you are actively loading/unloading passengers. Drive a car up there and sit outside the terminal and see how long it takes for Port of Portland Police to show up to make you move or ticket you. Average time is less than 10 minutes. If state law is valid at the airport, it’s valid on SE Carruthers.

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      • Charley Gee August 28, 2012 at 3:38 pm

        Same with momentarily. The analogy I use is to an exception to the unlawful parking in a disabled parking space found in ORS 811.615. You can pull in without a permit, but only to momentarily drop off or pick up a person with a disability. That doesn’t include parking there while the person is in the store or for any other reason.

        Same with parking in the bike lane. A motor vehicle is allowed to park there momentarily while loading or unloading goods or passengers, but no longer.

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    • Terry D August 28, 2012 at 12:59 pm

      I do not think that the retail establishments are ready for what needs to be done to get bike lanes on the retail corridors. They baulked HARD when the city wanted to remove one lane of traffic for a whole eight blocks on SW 12th, how would they react to removing a whole lane on MLK the whole stretch of the city? or Hawthorne? We would have to try an easier route first if there is any hope of support….like Foster maybe since the neighborhood wants less traffic and bike lanes anyway….

      I think it would be better to focus on “finishing” a greenway grid network throughout the eastside first since they are cheap, pedestrians and the “interested but concerned” group like them, and retail establishments do not scream bloody murder since the parking removal is minimal; plus the crossing improvements improve their customer’s access. This would also bring bicycle infrastructure to outer neighborhoods like south Portland making it easier for those residents to come closer in.

      As far as these trucks on Caruthers go…..without building the waterfront path there is no real solution. The Portland Spirit just needs to be relocated or the dock needs to be rebuilt. There is only one other property I believe to fill the gap since one property owner did actually build a nice path….even if it does not connect to anything. I think they sell watercraft….

      In the meantime, remove the bike lanes, drop the speed limit, place sharrows and “bikes on roadway” signs everywhere, add speed bumps and clearly mark how to get to the waterfront. Sometimes separated facilities are not the best option and this is one of those times.

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  • Joe August 28, 2012 at 10:14 am

    also we don’t need be known as outlaws. 🙂 even tho- I ride a steel horse and live in the WEST, lets keep the peace

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  • chucklehead August 28, 2012 at 12:32 pm

    nobody seems to be offering solutions. What good will ‘enforcement’ do if there is no other place to park?

    The alternative if to put these companies out of business because some cyclists have had their feelings hurt.

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    • Chris I August 28, 2012 at 8:42 pm

      There are plenty of places to park. They are a block or two away. The drivers or businesses are making the choice to not use them.

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  • kww August 28, 2012 at 12:39 pm

    I think that accommodation for trucks (parked), and bikes can be made. It takes PBOT to come up with a solution.

    My thoughts:
    Part of the solution is dedicated park trucking for staging on the east side of the street.

    The second part is a dedicated two way bike/ped lane on the west side of the street as Spiffy stated.

    The ultimate solution is a riverfront trail completion.

    Water Ave. north of the intersection is now closed for good, so through traffic will create more risk for bicycles (who illegally) blow through the stop signs.

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  • RyNO Dan August 28, 2012 at 1:57 pm

    I’ve rode (by bike) thru this block most days for years, and never had an issue. I always thought that this behavior was grand-fathered in, in exchhange for the inconvenience and danger of near-by bike lanes. Where exactly do you propose that McCoy millwork unload their deliveries ? My feeling is that this story is another round-about dig at the people that won’t let the riverside path go through. (SKNW is definitely evil.) Connecting the path only solves the issue for those coming from the springwater, but not for cyclists coming from Division. Or are you suggesting to remove the bike lane (good idea), or are you suggesting that the trucks block the mv lane instead, or what ?? All the punitive comments seem unhelpful.

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    • A.K. August 28, 2012 at 2:28 pm

      Yeah, seems like such a non-issue to me. I bet the RR track crossing there claims more victims than those parked trucks.

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    • Richard Allan August 28, 2012 at 2:49 pm

      “SKNW is definitely evil.”

      SK Northwest dedicated the greenway trail easement to the City, and built the segment of the trail across its property. How, exactly, does that make SKNW “evil”?

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    • kww August 28, 2012 at 3:45 pm

      McCoy Millwork has numerous unused garage bays along SE Carruthers. Why they don’t tell trucks to stage there is a mystery.

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  • Joe August 28, 2012 at 1:57 pm

    Trucks be gone at noon today, only 1 hanging around. 🙂

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  • Kevin Wagoner August 28, 2012 at 8:31 pm

    I am not endorsing this idea, but a previous Bikeportland.org post contained this article.


    You have to wonder if the solo cup idea would work.

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    • q`Tzal August 28, 2012 at 9:31 pm

      At night truck stops fill up fast. To keep truck drivers from parking somewhere they have to deploy these giant concrete blocks usually about 5’x3’x2′; these cold easily total a car and truckers still shove them out of the way on

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    • q`Tzal August 28, 2012 at 9:36 pm

      At night truck stops fill up fast. To keep truck drivers from parking somewhere they have to deploy these giant concrete blocks usually about 5’x3’x2′; these could easily total a car and truckers still shove them out of the way on occasion.

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  • Brian August 28, 2012 at 9:57 pm

    I turned onto 4th and Caruthers this morning and saw what appeared to be a young woman who had been hit and ran laying on the corner surrounded by 6-7 people. She was bleeding and didn’t look good as the fire truck arrived.

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  • Doug August 29, 2012 at 12:28 am

    SKNW did not put in their section of the path easily. Fought it for quite a while, I remember. But ultimately they did put it in. I’d credit city staff (PBOT? BDS? )for diligence in getting them to do it.

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  • davemess August 29, 2012 at 8:55 am

    Do people really see a lot of traffic in this area? I guess I mostly go through on off hours (early evenings, weekends), but I have rarely seen more than a could of cars on this section of street. I am wondering if we’re making a mountain out of a molehill, and if there in fact is a problem when the bike lanes are blocked. Guess I’ve always kind of considered this area a neighborhood greenway where it’s perfectly fine to ride in the middle of the street.

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    • ED August 29, 2012 at 9:55 am

      I’d second this. I normally just run or bike down the middle of the street here if there are trucks in the bike lane area, since the traffic on Caruthers seems to be pretty light.

      Someone did bring up a good point about (bike/ped) traffic increasing here once the new bridge is complete, so that might be a good reason to address this, but otherwise, this is pretty low on my radar.

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      • VTRC August 29, 2012 at 12:51 pm

        I ride it daily. Be visible, keep your head up, think about escape paths if a truck does something weird. There’s lots of visibility here, and the speeds are low.

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  • 007 August 29, 2012 at 11:43 am

    When calling the police to report bad driving, the dispatcher yawns disinterestedly, but I’ve found that their response becomes lively and interested if you add that the occupants are smoking a bong in their car.

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  • Spiffy August 30, 2012 at 1:18 pm

    just found this tidbit:


    16.70.450 Off-Street Parking Required for Trucks.

    A person owning or controlling any truck or truck trailer must provide at his or her own expense complete off-street parking facilities for the storage of all such equipment.

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