On NE Glisan, new bike lane character (and lower speed limit) earn clucks of approval

Posted by on February 3rd, 2015 at 9:16 am

Male? Female? The comb seems hiply unisex. Either way, it’ll now have a safer time crossing the road.
(Photo: Terry Dublinski-Milton)

Portland’s famous bike lane characters keep getting more colorful. As we wrote in December, this unique and wonderful tradition has been making a comeback, thanks to creative city staffers.

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The bike-riding chicken above, whose photo was shared Monday by North Tabor Neighborhood Association board member Terry Dublinski-Milton, is the latest addition to Northeast Glisan. Dublinski-Milton noted that its appearance accompanies another change to the street: dropping the speed limit from 35 mph to 30 mph between Sandy and 82nd.

That’s the latest safety-enhancing step for a street that saw a walking fatality in 2013 but has at least gotten dramatically safer since it was restriped as one of the city’s first road diets.

As for the bike lane characters, part of the reason they’re cool is that PBOT workers create them on their own time using scrap materials. The cool thing isn’t that the public is getting a little cultural and economic value (which these definitely provide) for free. The cool thing is that Portland is the sort of city that hires the sort of people who are motivated to do things like this on their own time.

“Thank you PBOT, we appreciate the speed reduction,” Dublinski-Milton wrote to the City’s Bureau of Transportation. “And the chicken is cute as well.”

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38 Comments
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    invisiblebikes February 3, 2015 at 9:45 am

    Why did the chicken cross the road?

    To get to a bike lane and be less of a target for crazy drivers!

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    davemess February 3, 2015 at 10:06 am

    Is this in Laurelhurst between 39th and 47th? Going East on the road?

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      Terry D-M February 3, 2015 at 10:30 am

      This is around NE 43rd heading eastbound.

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    capthaddock February 3, 2015 at 10:09 am

    Now if only they would work on Glisan between 60th and 82nd. I often have issues with drivers thinking that it’s a four lane expressway through there.

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      Terry D-M February 3, 2015 at 10:32 am

      The new crosing islands at 78th and 65th have helped, but yes the city should stripe the pqrking lane…southside….at least. When there are few parked cars, the 18 foot lane is dangerous.

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        capthaddock February 3, 2015 at 10:42 am

        It seems that the double lights at the top of the hill (67th) “confuse” drivers into thinking that there’s two lanes. I often see drivers (east and west bound) 4 wide.

        As a structural-functionalist, I would dearly love to see curb extensions at both corners where the bus stops (us bank / plaid pantry) to curb this thought process.

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          paikiala February 3, 2015 at 11:17 am

          2 signal heads per approach is the standard for safety – redundancy in the event of failure.

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            capthaddock February 3, 2015 at 1:29 pm

            Paikila,

            I find that straw-dog really hard to swallow.
            1) I live right in the area, we’ve had 3 major power outages this fall/winter, each time effecting the lights. People managed to do just fine treating it as a 4 way stop and NO signals.

            Nevermind the fact that if you go down Glisan to say 40th, that intersection has only 1 light per lane..

            Again, viewing it from a structure defining function lens, it enables bad driving behavior.

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            Chris I February 3, 2015 at 2:53 pm

            The striping east of 60th is absurdly wide. Why didn’t PBOT install an uphill bike lane in that section?

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              Terry D-M February 3, 2015 at 8:20 pm

              I asked at the time, and was told “PBOT looked into bike lanes but they did not go anywhere.”

              I did not like that answer and ran for NA Transportation chair, and have been relected since. We would LOVE bike lanes on Glisan. The neifghborhood is behind it, and with an entire row of parked being removed for it even passed committee…we did not want the added parking east of 62nd, but the high number of vehicles using the on-off ramps and going to PPMC make downsizing the intersections of 58th-60th difficult.

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    Terry D-M February 3, 2015 at 10:33 am

    Thanks Michael, this article made me chuckle…..particualry since I am a TERRIBLE photographer.

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    Dave February 3, 2015 at 10:35 am

    Ironic that it’s a chicken, since only a brave person would bicycle through the door zone.

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      Terry D-M February 3, 2015 at 10:40 am

      I know….retro-fit needed. North Tabor Vision Zero, on the agenda Feb 17th, will recomended making all bikeways protected in some way over time as roads get repaved/re-designed.

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    Kyle February 3, 2015 at 10:56 am

    The new 30mph speed limit seems reasonable considering the fact that traffic flowed at about that speed before the change – at least between Sandy and 47th or so. Unfortunately I still don’t really like to ride on Glisan due to the occasional high speed vehicle and narrow bike lane. The city could have simply removed parking on one side of the street to buffer the bike lanes…

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      Terry D-M February 3, 2015 at 12:57 pm

      These bike lanes date back to the 90’s. When they modernize Ladd’s circle, and finish the Glisan bike lanes east I am sure this will come up for discussion/ implementation. It will not be repaved though for a long time….

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        Chris I February 3, 2015 at 2:59 pm

        They aren’t too bad as long as you hug the left line. The biggest problem is the fact that they disappear after 47th.

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    Cory Poole February 3, 2015 at 10:57 am

    I live on 47th between burnside and stark. The city reduced the speed limit to 25 and we have noticed a HUGE difference in traffic speed. Before it was routine to see cars go by at 40 mph. This on a road that is used heavily by bicycles and has no shoulder or bike lane. Thanks to whoever made this happen!

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      davemess February 3, 2015 at 12:54 pm

      Hmmm. I ride this section every day going to Providence, and I can’t say I’ve noticed a huge difference in traffic speed when I’m being passed. One thing that has been huge though is that they changed the light timings, and now you can get the green at Stark coming from Burnside.

      Still glad they dropped the speed limit. There was a nasty rollover on this section last year one morning, I wonder if that was a strong push to get the change?

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        Cory Poole February 3, 2015 at 1:00 pm

        I don’t know. I made a point to share a photo of that rollover with several people downtown. It was a bad scene.

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        Terry D-M February 3, 2015 at 8:32 pm

        45Th from Hoyt to Woodstock should be added as a bikeway to the comp map, even if it is “unconstrained”. It is direct, low traffic volume and does not have the jogs that 41st does. You just have to finagle a little bit around Powell and the park combined with Fire engine friendly speed tables on 47th….both concepts are requests of North Tabor Vison Zero.

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          davemess February 4, 2015 at 8:01 am

          Would you expect them to “decommission” the 41st/42nd bikeway? Would it make sense to have two that close to one another?

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            Terry D-M February 4, 2015 at 8:12 am

            Long range, yes it would make sense as they would serve different functions. Keep in mind, in the long range planning, that this region of the city is shooting for close to one-third bike mode share or higher by 2030.

            In Europe they have upgraded bikeway about every quarter mile in cities like Copenhagen….which is five blocks, here. I do not see any reason to decommission 41st, but it is slow and meandering with Narrow bikelanes south of Powell. It was the FIRST bikeway built in the city. South of Gladstone or Holgate sliding the bikelanes west to Casear Chavez should be looked at since there have been all sorts of calls for commercial access here in South Portland. North Of Gladstone, I think it would be really difficult to road diet Ceasar Chavez, so keep it…..but yes, from North Tabor’s perspective this is a lower priority than the 60’s, 70’s or 80th bikeways and built out the infrastructure in the lower income neighborhoods.

            It would help those getting to PPMC from the south though…particularity those who do not want to ride over Mount Tabor. ANYTHING to kick up the bike commute rate to PPMC would help…..we want them to start a cash out program for bike commuters…sigh….the joys of living next to a mega corporation…..

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  • John Liu
    John Liu February 3, 2015 at 11:28 am

    Kyle
    The new 30mph speed limit seems reasonable considering the fact that traffic flowed at about that speed before the change – at least between Sandy and 47th or so. Unfortunately I still don’t really like to ride on Glisan due to the occasional high speed vehicle and narrow bike lane. The city could have simply removed parking on one side of the street to buffer the bike lanes…
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    The bike lane on Glisan from Sandy to 47th is about as mellow as a bike lane can hope to be, on a major street in Portland. I ride it daily. The circle at Cesar Chavez can be a bit dicey, but otherwise that bike lane is no problem.

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      davemess February 4, 2015 at 8:02 am

      Even during peak hours there just doesn’t seem to be a ton of traffic on that section of the road (definitely more as you get further east).

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        Terry D-M February 4, 2015 at 8:17 am

        PPMC draws 2000 Vehicles per morning from the East Glisan/205 off ramps to the parking ramp…every work morning. These 2000 vehicles then take Glisan and the 60th street freeway ramp home every afternoon. East of 58th Glisan has 19K per day, west of 47th this drops by more than a third.

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    Scott H February 3, 2015 at 11:29 am

    The reduced speed limit is very much appreciated PDOT. Keep it up.

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    SW February 3, 2015 at 1:12 pm

    I live on se140 & Main ..it is straight and flat from se139th to se 148th, and has NO stop signs, bumps or anything to slow cars. Kids play in the street.
    Wanna-be racers use it for testing. I hear motorcycles scream down it after dark.

    I have asked COP , Mayors Office and PBOT many times to remedy this.

    Various answers ? :

    Nobody has been killed, so no need.
    A speed bump is $800 , fork over the money and we’ll install one.
    A stop sign has to be Federally approved.

    and the best (worst ?) for last 🙁

    We have aerial surveillance and nobody has ever exceeded 35 mph on that street.

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      el timito February 3, 2015 at 2:03 pm

      Putting in a plug for EPAPbike, the Bike Subcommittee of the East Portland Action Project (click my name for webpage). Their webpage is not so up-to-date, but gives a flavor of what they have done/are doing.
      They advocate for better bikeways and are pushing for the Mill-Market-Main-Millmain Neighborhood Greenway (also known as the 4-M).
      Meetings are on the 4th Tuesday of the month (2/24 this month) from 6:30-8 at Muchas Gracias, 1307 NE 102nd Ave (across from WinCo). At the last meeting we heard about the timeline for the 130’s Neighborhood Greenway, to be built this coming Fall/Winter.

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        Terry D-M February 3, 2015 at 8:26 pm

        That is good to know….is there actual money for the thee m’s? The comp map does not say funded last time i checked….

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      davemess February 4, 2015 at 8:04 am

      Go to your neighborhood association and get them to request a speed limit assessment by PBOT. We’ve had some success with this recently in our neighborhood, with two streets which are being recommended to change to a lower speed limit to ODOT.
      Make sure you press the issues with the street: residential, kids, no sidewalks, schools, parks, etc. Guilt them!

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    stasia:) February 3, 2015 at 1:24 pm

    “The cool thing isn’t that the public is getting a little cultural and economic value (which these definitely provide) for free. The cool thing is that Portland is the sort of city that hires the sort of people who are motivated to do things like this on their own time.”

    Totally:) Thanks, creative PBOT people!

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    Brad February 3, 2015 at 1:45 pm

    Hoping 30 mph is a part of a graduated reduction to 25 mph eventually.

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    Joe February 3, 2015 at 2:13 pm

    haha nice

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    Dwaine Dibbly February 3, 2015 at 6:02 pm

    Funny. Subtle. Approved.

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    SW February 4, 2015 at 8:48 am

    SW
    I live on se140 & Main ..it is straight and flat from se139th to se 148th, and has NO stop signs, bumps or anything to slow cars. Kids play in the street.
    Wanna-be racers use it for testing. I hear motorcycles scream down it after dark.
    I have asked COP , Mayors Office and PBOT many times to remedy this.
    Various answers ? :
    Nobody has been killed, so no need.
    A speed bump is $800 , fork over the money and we’ll install one.
    A stop sign has to be Federally approved.
    and the best (worst ?) for last 🙁
    We have aerial surveillance and nobody has ever exceeded 35 mph on that street.
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    And the Charlie Hales answer (from his first month in office) “we’ll pass that along to XXX office, they will be contacting you” ..never happened.

    Main is a through street from 139th to 181st. Lots of bikes.

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    Sho February 4, 2015 at 1:04 pm

    This isn’t calling cyclists chickens or perhaps the one after Hawthorne bridge going east with the devil horns? Many do seem to be in good fun but there are a few with some passive aggressive behavior.

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    Josh Gold February 4, 2015 at 4:23 pm

    What was the process PBOT went through to achieve the speed reduction? Interested in what other streets may be potential candidates for speed limit reduction.

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      Terry D-M February 4, 2015 at 8:32 pm

      PBOT requested the speed reduction after they road dieted Glisan down to one lane in each direction. This was back about two years ago after an unfortunate death in a marked crosswalk at 78th and Glisan. Once the median refuge island was built, and the roadway was reduced to one lane in each direction except at the busy intersections of 82md, 60th-58th, then the roadway qualified for the reduced limit.

      It takes ODOT a while though.

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