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SE Clinton gets Portland’s first “Bikes May Use Full Lane” sign

Posted by on November 5th, 2015 at 4:11 pm

bmuflsign

New sign at SE 27th and Clinton.
(Photo by Betsy Reese)

Slowly but surely the Portland Bureau of Transportation is re-claiming Southeast Clinton street as a place where bicycle riding is prioritized.

As promised the agency has just added new signage marking the street as a “neighborhood greenway.” PBOT has also taking an unprecedented step to make sure all road users are aware that people on bicycles do not always have to pull over to the right by adding “Bicycles May Use Full Lane” signs — a first for Portland.

The sign is meant to clarify existing Oregon law (ORS 814.430) that gives people riding bicycles the right to “take the lane” under certain circumstances. Riding in the middle of the lane allows people to avoid the door-zone and prevents them from weaving between the curb and parked cars.

As we’ve been reporting, the amount of people driving on SE Clinton has inched steadily upward in recent years as nearby Division Street has undergone major construction and growth. That added motor vehicle traffic has made Clinton a much more stressful and dangerous place to ride a bike and people have not been shy about letting City Hall know about it.

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PBOT has promised traffic diverters on the street, but those plans have been delayed as the city deals with objections from some residents.

Even so, some progress is nice to see. Kari Schlosshauer, who has organized a grassroots effort to make Clinton safer to ride on, had this to say in Twitter this evening:

— Jonathan Maus, (503) 706-8804 – jonathan@bikeportland.org

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84 Comments
  • Avatar
    Champs November 5, 2015 at 4:14 pm

    …but where’s the 20MPH neighborhood greenway speed limit?

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      alankessler November 5, 2015 at 4:18 pm

      It’s illegal to reduce the limit until PBOT gets the traffic volume down.

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        sean November 5, 2015 at 4:24 pm

        ODOT’s call

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          alankessler November 5, 2015 at 4:37 pm

          Yes, that rule is binding only on PBOT… ODOT could permit the decrease…. I think we’re more likely to see ODOT revive the Mt. Hood Freeway plans.

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        wsbob November 5, 2015 at 11:54 pm

        “It’s illegal to reduce the limit until PBOT gets the traffic volume down.” alankessler

        Do you know of any info as to how close Clinton, (or at least the section of the street that stands to be affected by installation of the diverters) may be to qualifying for a reduction in the posted speed limit of 25mph as shown in the picture accompanying this story?

        For bike travel on a neighborhood street like this one, 20 mph posted would be perfect. Allowing for a max 5 mph over latitude in enforcement, 20 would allow a 25 mph top speed…quite a brisk pace for most people riding. I’d think most people would be riding 15-20 mph. With routine, use of the full lane which may be 12′ wide or so, there may be plenty of room for faster riders to pass slower riders.

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          alankessler November 6, 2015 at 1:51 pm

          Check out the Neighborhood Greenways Assessment Report for more context:

          https://www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/article/542725

          Also check out PBOT’s project pages for the Clinton Street Enhancement:

          http://www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/article/542945?

          On that page they say “over 3000” but are not specific as to individual blocks:

          “West of SE Caesar Chavez Blvd, automobile volumes on Clinton St reach as high as 3,000 cars per day. This is well in excess of the new upper performance limit for neighborhood greenways (2,000 cars/day, with the ideal being no more than 1,000 cars/day). Much of this traffic is non-local, as data indicates that many people are using Clinton as a cut-through route instead of SE Powell Blvd or SE Division St.”

          Also, see the Lancaster Engineering report which was performed by volunteers from SaferClinton:

          https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B9siMKlWupv0MlJ5M3FNRm1UR01MTVRzR0JJNHlyZ0k3MHVF/view?usp=sharing

          This has some pretty detailed data.

          As for the PBOT detailed data, I’m not sure where to find it. The city would give it to you if you asked, or perhaps someone else will link us.

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            wsbob November 7, 2015 at 8:49 pm

            Thanks for posting that information. It would seem then that based on the policy criteria, Clinton has far too much traffic volume to allow the posted speed limit to be reduced.

            I remember thinking some years back when the posted speed limit reduction policy was adopted, that it seemed contradictory that a high volume of traffic in use on a given street would not allow the street’s posted speed limit to be reduced.

            That is, if it’s apparent that a volume of motor vehicle traffic a street is carrying, is arguably excessive to the point that it detracts significantly from livability of the surrounding neighborhood, and from use of the street for travel by means other than motor vehicle, then I would think this would argue strongly for a reduction in the posted speed limit…to support a broader range of functionality for the street.

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      Beeblebrox November 5, 2015 at 4:32 pm

      Diverters are needed first.

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    Alan Love November 5, 2015 at 4:19 pm

    Great start! I haven’t ridden Clinton in the last couple of days. Are these signs installed under every speed limit sign or just a few?

    Also, taking the lane on a residential street, especially a Greenway, is (IMHO) far safer than hugging the gutter and hoping that drivers pass safely when there is oncoming traffic. Tis much safer to take the lane and have the driver wait until it’s clear to pass. You can’t get squeezed/hit if they don’t pass. BUT this only works if most people riding do this. Don’t encourage drivers to make dangerous passes when there is 2 way traffic of any kind present. Please, for everyone’s safety, TAKE THE LANE.

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      John Lascurettes November 5, 2015 at 5:45 pm

      I can be hugging the crown (center) of the roadway on Siskiyou/Kickitat Greenway and I’ll STILL get passed on the left by drivers avoiding NE Fremont.

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        Lester Burnham November 6, 2015 at 10:19 am

        Oh man between the aggressive passers and the stop sign runners, Klickitat has become pretty stressful. I’m with you too, I ride right up the middle.

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        Huey Lewis November 6, 2015 at 12:58 pm

        I ride Stanton anymore. Siskiyou and Klickitat are worthless now. Way too much traffic. Stanton meanwhile is a street that auto commuters haven’t yet learned about.

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      soren November 8, 2015 at 1:37 pm

      I ride “in the lane” when its convenient to do so. Why should I have to “take” what is legally and ethically my right of way?

      I also object to “enthusiasts” telling others how to ride. If someone wants to ride on the right side of the road then they should be able to do so safely. If someone wants to ride on the sidewalk then they should be able to so safely. It is the duty of the people operating potentially lethal heavy machinery to not hit, injure, maim, or kill people riding in the lane, in the “gutter”, or on a sidewalk.

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      • Hello, Kitty
        Hello, Kitty November 8, 2015 at 2:22 pm

        You cannot ride on the sidewalk safely, unless you do so at the speed of sidewalk users (i.e. pedestrians). And even then you, the operator of the dangerous machinery, are a threat to others on the sidewalk.

        Please ride on the street.

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          soren November 9, 2015 at 9:25 am

          you are mistaken. it is both legal and safe to ride on sidewalks. in fact, in east portland most people who cycle ride on sidewalks. as someone who lives in wealthy central portland i don’t think its appropriate for me to tell people in east portland how to ride.

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          • Hello, Kitty
            Hello, Kitty November 9, 2015 at 10:07 am

            Will you tell them how to drive?

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  • Hello, Kitty
    Hello, Kitty November 5, 2015 at 4:28 pm

    Could we get similar signs on other high-bike volume (but non-greenway) streets?

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    Spiffy November 5, 2015 at 4:32 pm

    I thought we had moved past these conflict-causing ambiguous signs…

    PBOT has also taking an unprecedented step to make sure all road users are aware that people on bicycles do not always have to pull over to the right by adding “Bicycles May Use Full Lane” signs/

    nope, they haven’t… they’ve only made sure of that on this one road near those signs… unless the words “STATE-WIDE LAW” are at the top of the sign then drivers will continue to assume that anywhere that the sign isn’t posted cyclists are required to hug the debris-ridden gutter…

    as with the anti-diverter crowd they’re trying to solve a local problem and creating spillover problems everywhere else…

    the city should start consulting with advocates before they do anything bicycle related…

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      Pete November 5, 2015 at 10:48 pm

      Would you rather have “Share the Road”?

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        Spiffy November 6, 2015 at 8:26 am

        would you rather have “rhetorical sarcastic question”?

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          Pete November 6, 2015 at 11:06 am

          “Alex, I’ll take that for $400!”

          “You’re question is, ‘What is a greenway?'”

          “Ooh, I know Alex! Something most people outside of Portland have never heard of, including most drivers inside of Portland!”

          “Oh, I’m sorry… the correct answer is: A road lacking diverters that drivers use to avoid arterial traffic.”

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      wsbob November 6, 2015 at 9:41 am

      The bigger problem than some people driving not knowing the rules of the road relative to bikes, is the apparently many people biking that don’t know the rules relative to bikes. The ‘Bikes May Use Full Lane’ signs are for people biking, far more than they are for people driving.

      People biking are going to gain far more quality riding conditions sooner, as they recognize that responsibility for fostering better riding conditions starts with them; learn the rules of the road according to the law, and use them personally when riding. This ‘passing the buck’, blaming bad riding conditions on everyone else, doesn’t cut it.

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        Spiffy November 6, 2015 at 12:09 pm

        I would say that fear contributes more than lack of knowledge…

        I see this with pedestrians every day… people meekly waiting at the corner not exerting their right to cross… I pass them and walk into the road to signal cars to stop…

        cyclists don’t want to be in the middle of the road where they will anger drivers and risk getting run over…

        we can’t calm the fears of the vulnerable road users until we tame the beasts causing the fear…

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          pruss2ny November 6, 2015 at 12:22 pm

          TOTALLY agree…there is some responsibility for vru’s to be clear in their intent and execution and not to get frustrated when car drivers don’t discern their meekly displayed intentions (fortunately i don’t think that’s an issue for most of the people on this blog)..

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          wsbob November 6, 2015 at 9:30 pm

          “I would say that fear contributes more than lack of knowledge …” Spiffy

          Fear is definitely a factor in exercising rights to use of the road while riding a bike…at least it is for me…though having acquired a solid knowledge of what the law provides for in terms of clarifying the rights of people biking in their use of the road, I feel has helped me immensely to counter that fear and ride more skillfully and safely.

          I feel that knowledge of correct use of the road can help greatly with confidence in riding, and helps ward off intimidation by some of the people that for whatever reasons, get upset while driving.

          If a person riding, is not certain the use they’re making of the road is supported by the law, someone, for example honking their horn may have the person that’s riding, worry about having to pull over to the right side of the road, when according to the law, they may not be required to do so.

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        Pete November 6, 2015 at 3:05 pm

        “The ‘Bikes May Use Full Lane’ signs are for people biking, far more than they are for people driving.”

        No, they are indeed for everybody, though drivers are predominantly the ones laying on their horns and commenting on the Internet about bicyclists not riding where they’re supposed to.

        http://abc7news.com/traffic/bicyclist-fatally-struck-by-vehicle-near-palo-alto/1066032

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        El Biciclero November 6, 2015 at 3:53 pm

        “The bigger problem than some people driving not knowing the rules of the road relative to bikes, is the apparently many people biking that don’t know the rules relative to bikes.”

        I would dispute that this is a “bigger” problem, either in size or severity. The biggest problem is drivers killing people for any number of reasons. Not just because they don’t know the rules, but because they don’t care about the rules, know they can get away with breaking the rules, even know they can get away with injuring people while breaking the rules. bicyclists not knowing special rules is actually quite a small problem.

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    christopher November 5, 2015 at 4:33 pm

    always take the full lane on Clinton

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      lahar November 6, 2015 at 8:13 am

      And really on all greenways. Remember it is where cars should be considered guests.

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      Spiffy November 6, 2015 at 10:22 am

      I try to ride over the sharrows, which are usually in the middle of the lanes…

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        lahar November 6, 2015 at 10:45 am

        I like pretending the sharrows actually push me along much like a matchbox car, when I was a kid.

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    Todd Hudson November 5, 2015 at 4:43 pm

    All problems in SE Clinton solved!

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    realworld November 5, 2015 at 4:51 pm

    I think it’s hilarious and Sad that anyone thinks PDC’s (people driving cars) actually read either of those 3 signs.

    All 3 of those signs not only get ignored but PDC’s drive spiteful because of them.

    1) speed limit 25; rarely do PDC’s do the speed limit and it is publicly and in (via the media) encouraged by our LEO’s to drive within 10 mph over!

    2) Neighborhood greenway; few if any “neighborhood” PDC’s act very neighborly or show respect for this neighborhood.

    3) bike may use full lane; Please sir.. may I use the full lane?? please, please with a cherry on top?!
    this sign just proves to PDC’s that they Are the Superior Vehicle on the road and therefor can flex their steel muscles anytime they want.
    It’s no secrete to the driving public that they can literally get away with murder while behind the wheel of a car as long as their sober!

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    wsbob November 5, 2015 at 4:53 pm

    The signs should function as a helpful reminder to the many people most likely not having read Oregon’s laws 814.420 and 814.430. Essentially though, the signs are redundant in that people biking have a right to full use of the lanes whether or not there are signs on the street advising their right to use the full lane.

    Note that 814.430 does specifically say that this law doesn’t excuse road users from having to yield to overtaking vehicles (it says “drivers”…but I would not want to assume that this does not include people riding bikes. In other words, someone poking along at 5 mph or so on their bike, if they’ve got reasonable opportunity to move to the far right side of the road to let faster traffic pass, is obliged to do so.).

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  • Adam Herstein
    Adam Herstein November 5, 2015 at 5:16 pm

    Nice to see these signs go up. Now we just need diverters and a crossing treatment at 50th. Let’s get this “trial” project on the ground already.

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      paikiala November 13, 2015 at 12:52 pm

      a one way east auto lane with west bound bike only lane 49th to 50th has been discussed, but since traffic volumes Chavez to 50th are already under 1,000 cars per day, diversion is not an option.

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        Alex Reed November 13, 2015 at 3:01 pm

        This is why total daily volumes are a bad metric. I would bet that peak hourly volumes (especially on days when the 50th/Division light is backed up) in the AM rush hour would be pretty high for the 50th to Chavez segment – and the peak hourly volumes are what scare people off riding in my opinion. (“There’s a lot of cut-through traffic on that route when little Johnny needs to get to school!”)

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    Betsy Reese November 5, 2015 at 5:18 pm

    § 814.430 Improper use of lanes
    http://www.oregonlaws.org/ors/814.430

    § 811.425¹ Failure of slower driver to yield to overtaking vehicle http://www.oregonlaws.org/ors/811.425

    § 811.065¹ Unsafe passing of person operating bicycle http://www.oregonlaws.org/ors/811.065

    These are the links to Oregon law regarding bike positioning in the traffic lane, requirement to yield, and safe passing.

    These laws apply to all roadways that allow both bikes and cars, including Division, Chavéz and Powell, for example. Of course car drivers would prefer that bikes avoid those streets except for a block or two when traveling to or from a specific location on those streets, just as bicyclists would prefer car drivers do the same on non-arterials, especially designated bike routes and Neighborhood Greenways like Clinton. Read these statutes yourselves and let me know if you come away with a different interpretation than mine. As I understand the law, the key information related specifically to the Clinton Greenway is as follows.

    The law states “Bicycles must ride as close as practicable to the right curb or edge of the roadway, EXCEPT”:

    1. “When reasonably necessary to avoid hazardous conditions including, but not limited to, fixed or moving objects, parked or moving vehicles, bicycles, pedestrians, animals, surface hazards or other conditions that make continued operation along the right curb or edge unsafe” (On Clinton curbside car parking runs the entire length and bicycles must avoid the “door zone” of car doors opening suddenly in their path. At intersections, cross-traffic, whether car, bike, or ped, can’t see bikes if they are hugging the door zone.)
    OR
    2. ” to avoid unsafe operation in a lane on the roadway that is too narrow for a bicycle and vehicle to travel safely side by side.” (Clinton is one lane in each direction. These lanes are too narrow for a motor vehicle and a bicycle to travel safely side-by-side. Cars may only pass by using the oncoming lane, and only if there are no oncoming vehicles, including bicycles. When bicyclists ride too close to the parked cars, it encourages cars to pass them illegally and unsafely.)

    HOWEVER:

    “A slower driver/bike rider (traveling under the speed limit/basic rule speed) must yield to overtaking vehicle (traveling obeying the speed limit/basic rule) by moving their vehicle off the main traveled portion of the highway into an area sufficient for safe turnout.”

    So, on Clinton Street –

    As a driver, I must wait patiently behind a slower bicyclist until either
    1. I have the opportunity to pass safely in the oncoming lane,
    2. either I or the bicyclist turns off Clinton, or
    3. until the bicyclist has the opportunity to safely move off the traveled portion of the roadway into a safe turnout (for example, comes to an extended portion of roadway with no parked cars and can move into the parking area of the roadway to allow faster vehicles to pass).

    I need to accept without rancor that if I find myself traveling for more than a block or two behind a slower cyclist on the Clinton Street Greenway, that it is I who should turn off and use a different street.

    As a bicyclist, I must maintain my position in the center of the lane because, if I don’t,
    1. cars will think they have room to pass me, trying to squeeze through by creating a ‘third, non-existent, middle lane’ even when there is an oncoming car or bicycle,
    2. cross-traffic (cars, bikes, and peds) can’t see me traveling next to parked cars when approaching an intersection and may pull out in front of me even though I have the right of way, and
    3. I could get car-doored riding too close to parked cars.

    However,
    When faster cars are following me and oncoming traffic prevents them from passing, if and when I come upon an area of roadway sufficient for a safe turnout, I must move over and let them pass.

    Given Oregon law, it makes sense for motor vehicles to avoid using Greenways and neighborhood streets except for a very short distance to get to or from their destinations, and for bicyclists to do the same with arterial streets, unless they can travel at a speed that does not disrupt the flow of motorized traffic, or a bike lane is provided. When we do need to use a street that is prioritized for another mode, we need to behave as courteous and respectful guests, disrupting the flow of the prioritized mode on that street as little as possible.

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      mh November 5, 2015 at 5:41 pm

      Why Betsy, that goes against almost every modern American’s feeling of entitlement!

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      gutterbunnybikes November 5, 2015 at 5:43 pm

      You answered your own However:

      “2. ” to avoid unsafe operation in a lane on the roadway that is too narrow for a bicycle and vehicle to travel safely side by side.” (Clinton is one lane in each direction. These lanes are too narrow for a motor vehicle and a bicycle to travel safely side-by-side. Cars may only pass by using the oncoming lane, and only if there are no oncoming vehicles, including bicycles. When bicyclists ride too close to the parked cars, it encourages cars to pass them illegally and unsafely.)”

      Besides, this is all way too nit-picky. No one is going cite a bicycle for impeding traffic on Clinton. Don’t understand why we gotta go through all this for bicycles, there are way more rules for cars that no one knows, obeys, or even cares about – but bikes – yeah gotta be on top of that one.

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        Gerald Fittipaldi November 5, 2015 at 6:23 pm

        Thoughts on NE 28th?

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          gutterbunnybikes November 5, 2015 at 9:06 pm

          Mine?

          I’ve thought all along 28th should be a test site for a commercial greenway. 20 mph speed limit – and keep the curbside parking – 2 per block for bike corals on both sides of the street.

          But I like the greenway concept a lot, I don’t think they get enough credit, and so far in Portland anyway, they have the highest safety level of all other bicycle specific infrastructure in town.

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      gutterbunnybikes November 5, 2015 at 5:50 pm

      I should also add, that there is no minimum speed limit posted on Clinton which would mean that impeding traffic would be riding at less than 15 MPH.

      ORS 811.105

      “Fifteen miles per hour when driving on an alley or a narrow residential roadway”

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        Spiffy November 5, 2015 at 7:08 pm

        no, that statute says that the MAX speed is 15 mph, so everybody should be going less…

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          gutterbunnybikes November 5, 2015 at 8:58 pm

          That is max speed if speed limit is not posted. I could not find anything about what is too slow so I went with the 15 as being the reasonable speed in which impeding traffic might be considered on a narrow neighborhood street.

          Though it’s likely (I’d love this info if anyone’s got it) there is no minimum speed on neighborhood streets which makes it a moot point.

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        paikiala November 13, 2015 at 12:54 pm

        A narrow residential roadway is a 2-way road with 18 feet or less of space for vehicular travel. Clinton has 20 feet.
        You are citing the statutory speed limits. Lower speeds are possible than the statutory maximums.

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      John Lascurettes November 5, 2015 at 5:51 pm

      Ray Thomas, bicycle advocate lawyer, covered this exact thing on Bike Portland before: http://bikeportland.org/2013/12/02/get-legal-with-ray-thomas-bicycling-and-oregons-passing-laws-97747

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      Buzz November 5, 2015 at 5:53 pm

      Sorry, but no one is legally required to ride in the door zone OR use the parking lane to let faster traffic pass.

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        John Lascurettes November 6, 2015 at 8:32 am

        I’m missing the part where Betsey said you were expected to ride in the door zone at any point, for any reason.

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          Buzz November 6, 2015 at 10:17 am

          Agreed, but she seems to be conflicted about taking the lane in the first place, and a lot of people in that situation tend to shy to the right.

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      B. Carfree November 5, 2015 at 7:11 pm

      Other than restricted access roads and infrastructure (like freeways, bike paths and sidewalks), we don’t have roads that formally prioritize one mode over another. When I’m riding on an arterial, I’m not a guest, I’m traffic. No, I don’t need to go blocks out of my way just so someone in a car can drive without encountering a person on a bike on OUR road.

      I’m fine with you and anyone else riding in the manner you describe, but please don’t pretend that the way you ride is the only right way.

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      Spiffy November 5, 2015 at 7:15 pm

      814.430 Improper use of lanes: the normal speed of traffic for a bicycle is under 10 mph… no need to pull over…

      811.425 Failure of slower driver to yield to overtaking vehicle: I’m not a driver, I’m a rider… language is important and that’s why many laws state “operator of a vehicle” when they apply to everybody and “driver” when they apply to motor vehicles… note that 814:430 is very clear to state “person is operating a bicycle” and not “driver of a bicycle”… no need to pull over…

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      wsbob November 5, 2015 at 11:37 pm

      Betsy…it’s good of you to also have cited those three Oregon laws and offer some scenarios as to how road users regardless of their mode of travel, should apply then in traveling the road.

      Another traffic scenario to consider, especially on this section of Clinton, the use of which is soon to be managed by diverters, is people on bikes, traveling the same direction, wanting to be passing each other due to different speeds traveled.

      Using the full lane, people traveling relatively slow on their bike, may be able to move slightly to the right of the lane’s center without getting into the door zone, to allow people traveling faster on their bike, to more easily and safely pass the slower rider without crossing over the road’s center line.

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      soren November 6, 2015 at 10:06 am

      “unless they can travel at a speed that does not disrupt the flow of motorized traffic”

      I prefer to drive slowly and find that other drivers have no problem “flowing” around me. I’m struggling to understand how driving or cycling below the speed limit prevents traffic from flowing.

      “When we do need to use a street that is prioritized for another mode, we need to behave as courteous and respectful guests”

      According to this line of reasoning people riding on Alberta, Hawthorne, Broadway, SW 3rd, or 28th are guests. I disagree.

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        Spiffy November 6, 2015 at 11:59 am

        I prefer to drive slowly and find that other drivers have no problem “flowing” around me.

        you haven’t driven the new speed limit on the Morrison bridge lately… I have done it often and most of the time people are incredibly irate that I’m driving so slow… I now expect to be cut off, tailgated, and honked at simply for obeying the law… which happens to be the usual behavior I also experience while cycling legally…

        my point: drivers don’t want to obey the law… that would be incredibly inconvenient for them… if you impede their ability to break the law then you are the problem…

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          soren November 9, 2015 at 9:42 am

          my average driving speed is ~13 mph (according to my leaf dash board).

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    Buzz November 5, 2015 at 5:50 pm

    So they are going to waste these signs on the greenways instead of using them on arterial streets without any bicycle infrastructure, just like they did with sharrows?

    Typical of PBOT.

    🙁

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      mh November 5, 2015 at 6:07 pm

      Unfortunately, they’re not wasted here.

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    Gerald Fittipaldi November 5, 2015 at 6:19 pm

    Food for thought: NE 28th St is the same width as Clinton. Don’t believe me? … https://twitter.com/BikePortland/status/662422272766963713

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      Spiffy November 6, 2015 at 12:00 pm

      perhaps if they painted a center line on Clinton there would be less passing…

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        Jeff J. November 6, 2015 at 12:07 pm

        Plenty of unsafe passing on 28th even with the center line.

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        Gerald Fittipaldi November 7, 2015 at 11:46 am

        Centerlines on greenways have been shown to lead to more close passes. After removing centerlines, drivers on average give much more space when passing.

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    Anderson November 5, 2015 at 6:43 pm

    How about a couple of these signs on the steep section of SW Harrison St. going up to PSU from the Tilikum Crossing? The Harrison bike lane ends at Naito, and drivers trying to avoid a swing into the adjacent streetcar lane will practically run over you if you don’t take the full lane.

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      Eric Leifsdad November 5, 2015 at 10:54 pm

      For SW, just fill a truck with these signs and follow the bike map. The signs will bounce out of the truck and install themselves thanks to the bumps.

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    Pete November 5, 2015 at 11:03 pm

    I was elated to see this question on the latest driver exam:

    A bicycle rider may be positioned in the center of an auto lane:
    A) to avoid debris or pass another bicyclist
    B) when a lane is too narrow for an automobile to safely overtake
    C) when maintaining the normal speed of traffic
    D) all of the above
    E) never
    F) only when a sign is present indicating it is legal to do so

    After seeing this, I was even more stoked to find out that the DMV has subcontracted with Pearson-Vue to require reexamination every four years!

    But then I woke up, and went back to riding in door-zone sharrows under the occasional faded yellow Share the Road sign, and that’s when I realize that I don’t live in Oregon anymore.

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      John Lascurettes November 6, 2015 at 8:25 am

      Speaking of door-zone shadows: have you seen the ones they just installed on NE Rodney?

      For serious, this is much too close to the edge of the roadway in the line of parked cars: http://cl.ly/image/2N120w3g2o2d

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        John Lascurettes November 6, 2015 at 9:45 am

        “Door-zone sharrows” that was meant to say (thanks, autocorrect).

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        Robert Burchett November 6, 2015 at 12:19 pm

        Well, that’s revolting! But, I’ve never given much credence to sharrows anyway. People unable to detect a 3-dimensional moving bike with lights and an actual human on it will regard a flat thing covered in road grime? Should we think of sharrows as sort of ‘art’ or more like ‘humor’?

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        salexander November 6, 2015 at 3:20 pm

        That’s a sure fire way to get tossed into the street!

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        El Biciclero November 6, 2015 at 4:07 pm

        That picture makes it look like those were installed when there were no parked cars, at which time the sharrows would have appeared to be in the middle of the lane. Goes to show how much space is taken up by car parking, and how little those with knowledge of bike transportation have to do with installing bicycle-specific markings…

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    Zach H November 6, 2015 at 7:57 am

    I know those signs aren’t gonna fix everything, but I couldn’t help but smile this morning as I rode past them. At the very least, I’m thankful to have something to point to when the inevitable “don’t ride in the middle of the street” driver shouts out their window at me.

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    Jeff J. November 6, 2015 at 10:23 am

    It is absolutely not my experience that taking the lane will prevent drivers from making dangerous passes. They *will* squeeze you and they *will not* wait for the oncoming lane to be clear.

    I get a dangerous high speed pass nearly every day. I’ve been passed on the left at 40+ while signaling a left (twice). Last week, I had to come to a complete stop in the middle of the street to prevent a head-on collision between the driver passing me and an oncoming car (or a sideswiping of me…probably more likely). Just yesterday, someone had to blast around me at 30+ mph on a neighborhood street and park the car within a block or so.

    I’ve had someone blow through a stop sign while I was stopping at it (okay, people on bikes tend to do this too). I’ve had people blast around me within 30 feet of a stop sign with my daughter on the back of my bike. I’ve had someone run a fully red light at 50+ mph that I had already stopped for (again, to park less than a block later).

    I should also mention that all of these happened on either bike boulevards or neighborhood streets.

    I’ve already given up on confronting drivers. Now, I’m working on riding a little bit slower so the passes won’t be so high speed. I’m also experimenting with skipping my turn at four way stops and waving through a driver when I have a feeling that s/he will pull this nonsense (I estimate the she/he ratio at 50:50 for whether they will pull this nonsense.)

    I’ve been bike commuting daily for more than four years now and this past year has been far and away the worst for this behavior. Maybe it’s my new neighborhood.

    And despite all this, I still agree that taking the lane is a lot safer than hugging the curb. I’ve always done it and will continue to.

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      Katie Taylor November 6, 2015 at 1:48 pm

      It has gotten noticeably worse in the past year! A lot of aggressive and frankly just bad drivers seem to be moving to Portland from more car-centric areas. As more and more cars squeeze into infrastructure not designed to carry their numbers, all drivers get more desperate and take bigger risks, resulting in a ped/bike experience that is less and less safe, which will eventually lead to fewer people walking and biking and greater dependence on car travel, resulting in vociferous support for more freeways and arterials and cars being considered the only ‘serious’ mode of transport to spend tax dollars on. The City needs to get serious about getting people out their cars soon or we’ll lose what’s left of our vaunted livability here.

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    Mark November 6, 2015 at 10:26 am

    Maybe time for someone (BikeloudPDX) to organize some full lane width rides during rush hour? I am in!

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      soren November 6, 2015 at 12:01 pm

      Clinton St Social Ride
      Friday, November 13at 4:30pm
      Meet at PAZ — SE 16th and Woodward, Portland, Oregon 97202

      https://www.facebook.com/events/483516775160781/

      We will be riding up and down Clinton for a while so join later if you can’t make 4:30.

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      salexander November 6, 2015 at 3:18 pm

      I would love that! I’m in too – Tillamook street.

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    Trikeguy November 6, 2015 at 10:35 am

    christopher
    always take the full lane on ClintonRecommended 26

    Any lane under 13′ in width I take the lane, if the lane width is diminished by debris to under 13′, I take the lane. Basically I ride my trike the way I used to drive a tractor, be aware of what’s behind you and know where the next turnout is to let them by (specifically thinking of Fairview here on the climb – descending I’m more worried about cars slowing *me* down 🙂 )

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    salexander November 6, 2015 at 3:17 pm

    I was just getting on Bike Portland to mention this very thing! I will be taking the full lane on Tillamook every morning and evening with my daughter on a tandem…I can’t be very agile with a tandem, but I can go the speed limit (at 20 mph), so I prefer not to have to dodge and dart.

    I would prefer if it said “Bicyclists Take The Lane” emphatically, rather than “may”. I think empowering bicyclists to do what’s really safest for them is the best course of action. And if the cars feel the need to go over 20 on a bike boulevard, that would be discouraged by the multitude of cyclists.

    Ahhh, if only we lived in a perfect world…Keep up the pressure folks!

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    Mike Sanders November 6, 2015 at 3:45 pm

    Signposting the freeways with greenway and “Bikes May Use Full Lane” is a start. I agree, though, there should be a “State Law” headline on those “Full Lane” signs. This should include crosswalks on intersecting streets along greenways.

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    Mike Sanders November 6, 2015 at 3:46 pm

    Greenway, not freeway. Typo!

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  • Lenny Anderson
    Lenny Anderson November 6, 2015 at 4:47 pm

    Has the center line removed on Clinton? That’s an important start as the lack of a line tends to direct all traffic to the middle of the road. And why 25mph on a so-called Neighborhood Greenway? What about 20 mph bumps?
    Twenty years ago when the Tillamook Bikeway citizens group was working out details for that route, we spent a lot of time dreaming up signage that would not suggest, but clearly inform, motorists that they were no longer on some side street but on a new special route that was intended for cyclists, joggers, skaters, etc. Nothing meaningful was ever installed.
    All we got were Bike Dots (ha ha ha!), then Sharrows, which should be on streets like NE/SE 28th not Greenways, then some street sign “Art,” and now these cute little Neighborhood Greenway signs. Why not a big sign that says “Clinton Bikeway…motorists must yield” to cyclists, pedestrians, etc.? Its called branding, and PBOT has never dared to do it.

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    • Hello, Kitty
      Hello, Kitty November 8, 2015 at 2:25 pm

      The centerline has been gone for decades. The lack of a centerline slows traffic and makes drivers feel they can give cyclists more room when passing. I see it as an unqualified good thing on streets where people ride.

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      paikiala November 13, 2015 at 1:00 pm

      reducing the statutory speed for a residential district by 5 mph can only be done if the traffic volume on the street is below 2,000 cars per day. All portions of Clinton west of Chavez are 2,300 or more.

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