Weekender Ride

First Look: Portland’s new protected bike lane on 2nd Avenue

Posted by on August 11th, 2016 at 9:50 pm

New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-11.jpg

Northeast Portlander resident Gregg Lavender is overjoyed to have a protected lane.
(Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

The City of Portland is slowly but surely adding dedicated bicycle access to downtown streets. The latest new bikeway is 2nd Avenue where the Bureau of Transportation has installed a half-mile of protected bike lane from SW Washington to Everett.

PBOT’s Second Avenue Road Reconfiguration Project is part of the same fruitful collaboration with neighborhood leaders and the Old Town Chinatown Community Association that led to the buffered bike lane on 3rd Avenue and the new Ankeny Alley Plaza (not to mention 14 new crosswalks throughout Old Town).

The 2nd Avenue bikeway is the most ambitious physically protected bike lane downtown. The only other facility that comes close is the first protected bikeway we built on SW Broadway near Portland State University nearly seven years ago. Unlike the Broadway bikeway (a location chosen specifically for its lack of cross streets and potential conflicts), this one goes through several intersections and even a few mid-block driveways.

I spent just over an hour observing the facility and biking on it. Here’s what I saw…

New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-23.jpg

New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-19.jpg

New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-2.jpg

The pavement quality is very poor. There are potholes and cracks that could present a safety problem to some riders. There is also poor drainage. The puddles in these photos are after just a light rain. Imagine what this will look like in November.
New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-5.jpg

The cross-section: Bike lane curbside buffered from parked cars with plastic wands, then two standard lanes and another parking lane.
New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-7.jpg

This sign points the right way but unfortunately others have an arrow that points toward the curb, making it seem like you’re supposed to park curbside.
New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-20.jpg

It will take some educational efforts and some time for people to figure out where to park.
New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-8.jpg

Pretty good parking compliance just a week after it has gone in.
New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-9.jpg

Nearly all the dozen or so people I saw come up on the bike lane opted to use it (instead of remaining in the shared lanes).

Advertisement

New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-12.jpg

PBOT has used green liberally to mark the lane through intersections and to encourage two-stage right turns.
New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-21.jpg

New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-22.jpg

New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-24.jpg

View looking south from Ankeny.
New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-26.jpg

New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-25.jpg

Looking north at Ankeny Alley intersection.
New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-27.jpg

At Burnside PBOT has created two lanes, one for through traffic and the other for right turns.
New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-28.jpg

New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-29.jpg

New bike lane striping on Burnside at 2nd.
New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-31.jpg

Looking back at 2nd from Burnside.
New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-32.jpg

New crossbike to get across Burnside.
New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-34.jpg

The new bike lane improves walking safety by shortening the crossing distance.
New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-10.jpg

Left-hooks are one of the top concerns I’ve heard from users so far.
New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-13.jpg

Here’s what we see while driving.
New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-15.jpg

PBOT has very smartly prohibited parking at left-turn intersections to improve sightlines.
New bikeway on SW 2nd Avenue-17.jpg

Most people cut these corners too close in order to retain their speed. The good news is that PBOT says that concrete diverters are coming soon in these locations.

So far this new bike lane has drawn mixed reviews. I’ve talked to several bike messengers who really hate it. They happen to hang out every day at coffeeshops and bars on 2nd and 3rd so they ride these streets often. They’ve told me they don’t like being forced into a bike lane and they fear people won’t watch for left-hooks. Others are criticizing PBOT for not going far enough: They want full signalization and better physical separation.

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

Our work is supported by subscribers. Please become one today. You can also make a one-time donation here.

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. Also, if you comment frequently, please consider holding your thoughts so that others can step forward. Thank you — Jonathan

170 Comments
  • Will August 11, 2016 at 10:56 pm

    I take 2nd 5 days a week, 52 weeks a year going to work and this…is just not good. As you noted the curbside lane is a mess, left hooks are very possible going onto Oak, crossing 2nd to get onto Burnside is also a mess. This road is slow enough, there is no reason bikes shouldn’t stay in normal traffic where we can be fully seen and behave ‘normally’.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • wsbob August 12, 2016 at 12:02 pm

      People that want to ride no faster than 5-10 mph, without motor vehicles all around them, may be happier riding these new bike lanes, than they would the main lanes. When the main lanes are backed up with motor vehicles, some of the people wishing to ride faster, may be happy to use the bike lane to bypass congestion.

      For myself, as standard practice, I wouldn’t want my average speed, I expect would be at least 10 mph, reaching speeds of 15-22, on a bike on this street, limited by the multiple hazards the pictures show to exist in this newly created bike lane. I don’t think I’d generally be riding this bike lane. Too much irregular, sloping pavement, driveway openings, left hook potential. At speeds I want to and need to be able to ride, it would be too hazardous to ride there.

      But as I said earlier…for people that have the time and desire to ride slow, and be wary of the hazards present on this bike lane, even at slow speeds, riding in this bike lane may be preferable to them.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Cory P August 12, 2016 at 12:25 pm

      I don’t see why you cant continue to use the auto lanes. The advantage to me is that I will now feel comfortable riding with my daughter on 2nd. Many people wont ride in a lane with cars.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Buzz August 12, 2016 at 12:31 pm

        Because Oregon has a mandatory sidepath law, ORS 814.420.

        http://www.oregonlaws.org/ors/814.420

        Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Hello, Kitty
        Hello, Kitty August 12, 2016 at 12:31 pm

        If there is a bike lane, you are legally required to ride in it (unless you can leverage one of the many excuses for not doing so). When there is no bike lane, you can ride in any lane, including the center lane, if you can keep up with the flow of traffic, which is very doable downtown.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

        • Eric Leifsdad August 12, 2016 at 1:21 pm

          The “preparing to turn right” exception should suffice. Avoiding pedestrians who may not be currently present and various other statistical hazards should fall under the suitability / public hearing clause (I would really like to see the bike lane which survives a public hearing.)

          Recommended Thumb up 0

          • Buzz August 13, 2016 at 1:57 am

            I don’t want to have to justify or defend my actions to a cop or a judge, both of whom are likely to be unsympathetic. The city is building facilities for the ‘8 to 80’ crowd while simultaneously ignoring the core cyclists who put Portland on the map as a ‘cycling city’. This is not good policy or politics. If they want to build these facilities they should be actively advocating for repealing the mandatory sidepath law, but I’m not going to hold my breath.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

            • Dan A August 16, 2016 at 6:56 am

              and Idaho Stop, which would instantly improve all of the greenways, or whatever we call them now.

              Recommended Thumb up 0

      • JeffS August 13, 2016 at 4:40 pm

        congrats on not knowing the law

        Recommended Thumb up 0

        • Dan A August 16, 2016 at 6:57 am

          Congrats on not being polite, clever or funny.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

          • Eric Leifsdad August 16, 2016 at 10:26 pm

            or correct!

            Recommended Thumb up 0

    • lahar August 30, 2016 at 9:49 am

      Me too, I tried it a couple of times and between wandering pedestrians, wrong way bikeytowns and an overly fast no warning pass (grrr) on my right when I’m turning right on to Burnside to go over the bridge it does not work for my commute. Cute though, but I will stick to the road.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Hello, Kitty
        Hello, Kitty August 30, 2016 at 10:03 am

        “bikeytown”… I’m sold!

        Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Lance P August 11, 2016 at 11:17 pm

    I have to say that I actually enjoy riding home now on 2nd. My only complaint is that I wish it started at the beginning of 2nd so that I could take it all the way home from work. Now we just have to extend 3rd ave. a little further as well 🙂

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • BrianC August 11, 2016 at 11:20 pm

    For two years I commuted to work to a client office located at NW 1st and Couch. During that time I rode 2nd Ave from SW Columbia to Couch rain or shine, night and day.

    I took the middle lane and never had any problems. It frankly felt safer to take the middle, in traffic, than to try to hold to either the left or right lanes on 2nd ave. Same thing on 3rd going the other direction. (Though on 3rd I’d take the right lane.)

    To me the new design *looks* unsafe. (I’ve ridden on the 3rd with the new lane and hated it.)
    – I am seperated from moving traffic by a line of parked cars meaning *out of sight out of mind* until I’m dumped in the intersection.
    – Right turns out of the far left are problematic. (Don’t care for the green boxes.)
    – The new bike lane increases the probability of bad pedestrian/bike interactions. (Now people leaving parked cars cross the bike lane to the curb.)
    – My *expectation* is that now drivers will *not* want to see bicycles in the travel lane. (You have a dedicated lane, now stay in it…)

    Guess if I want to cross town from S to N 6th would be a better bet.

    However – I am sure there are many with a different take.

    I’d like to hear what everyone else thinks. 🙂

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Champs August 12, 2016 at 7:58 am

      You’ll use it and you’ll like it—probably about as much as trying to use either of the remaining travel lanes. At least one of them will be held up by turning traffic at every intersection now.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

    • was carless August 12, 2016 at 12:07 pm

      Hey, flip side is you can’t get stuck in traffic anymore.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Adam H.
    Adam H. August 11, 2016 at 11:20 pm

    I almost got left-hooked twice this afternoon on 2nd. This bike lane needs separate bike signals that separate straight bike traffic from left-turning car traffic. Without that, this bike lane just creates more conflict.

    Otherwise, I like the planters in the buffer area. Perhaps they can be used elsewhere in the city. Definitely an improvement over previous conditions, but as usual, falls just short of ideal.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • B. Carfree August 12, 2016 at 9:33 am

      We know this is a failed separation implementation when even Adam H. finds it dangerous.

      Over the many decades that I have seen efforts to completely segregate cyclists, I have yet to see one that is done well enough to actually be safer than a standard non-doorzone bike lane of sufficient width. This one just puts another data point on that observation.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Chris I August 12, 2016 at 9:38 am

        I’ve seen a lot of them in Europe, and a lot in other large cities in the US. In Portland, I can think of two: SW Broadway and NE Cully.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Adam H.
        Adam H. August 12, 2016 at 10:06 am

        Moody Avenue is about as close as we have to ideal in Portland. Grade separated, no parked cars to obscure the view, and no sharp turns. Only complaint is that it could be a bit wider. Really, any protected bike lane implementation in Portland should follow Moody Avenue’s example, whether it’s one-way or two-way.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

        • SE Rider August 12, 2016 at 12:27 pm

          Moody is a VERY unique road though, as it parallels a highway and thus has almost no cross streets for roughly 1/2 mile. That’s why it works.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Josh Berezin August 12, 2016 at 12:52 am

    Cop car was parked in it during evening rush hour today. No apparent emergency, driver just sitting in the car.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Gary B August 15, 2016 at 1:23 pm

      Why didn’t you issue a citizen citation?

      Recommended Thumb up 0

  • JeffS August 12, 2016 at 1:04 am

    I look at these pictures and can think nothing but Ugh.

    I want to applaud the good intentions, but I just can’t. That cyclists are willing to sacrifice their intersection safety for a gutter lane is baffling.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Robert Burchett August 12, 2016 at 9:04 am

      ‘Cyclists’ are not. I’d go on but the main points are already covered. One more WTF

      Recommended Thumb up 0

  • James August 12, 2016 at 6:26 am

    I am SO HAPPY to see more parking-protected bike lanes. So for that, thank you thank you THANK YOU PBOT! May they become the new standard in Portland.

    That said, the potential for left hooks on Oak is scary. The cheapest way to negate that would be to prevent cars from turning left onto Oak. It’s a sad statement on cars and drivers that there is literally no safe way to cross paths with them.

    My biggest ask for this bike lane is that, should it be continued further down 2nd Ave, that the design remains consistent and predictable unlike the bike lane on Williams.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • James August 12, 2016 at 6:33 am

    Gotta say, commenters here have been asking for parking-protected bike lanes for many years. And the potential for left/right hooks on them has always been a feature.

    So I’m disappointed that, now that we finally have a prominent parking-protected lane, most of the comments are complaints. Come on, y’all, give credit where it is due.

    I hated riding down 2nd Ave before. Drivers regularly pulled out of the left-hand parking without looking for bikes. So to me this new design feels like it has greatly reduced the amount of conflict.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Champs August 12, 2016 at 7:54 am

      We’re not a monolith.

      2nd and 3rd used to be simple propositions. In the center lane, nobody could impede or hurt you by making a turn. No road debris, no puddles, no doors swinging open. Riding through at a comfortable 14mph, you could make every light.

      This was the definition of safety and ease. Now it is taken away because people *feel* that it is anything but.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Bull August 12, 2016 at 10:24 am

        I never thought of taking the center name but have taken the right lane numerous times and almost always got the freaked out passes from cars hurriedly getting to speed then cutting over closely in front me. I have mixed feelings on the new lane and am hoping some of the mentioned problems will eventually find solutions like the planters to slow down turns. Still, I do not think the default was a pleasant ride either and that is worth mentioning.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Hello, Kitty
        Hello, Kitty August 12, 2016 at 10:38 am

        Riding downtown (absent the streets with uphill climbs) has always been easy and pleasant, as described by others. That said, I do like the green lanes on Oak and Stark. Not parking protected, but totally easy to use, with few turning conflicts, and dead simple for users to understand. These should be the model for improving cycling on other downtown streets.

        For the record, I do not like parking protected lanes, and I have never voiced support for them, ESPECIALLY not downtown (it is conceivable I would support them on a street with fast/heavy traffic).

        Recommended Thumb up 0

        • Adam H.
          Adam H. August 12, 2016 at 12:22 pm

          I ride Oak/Stark every day and every dyw I see either someone driving in it, blocking it, or turning right across it (rather than using the turn lane). Those lanes would be much better if moved to along the curb and separated by concrete and bike signals.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

          • Hello, Kitty
            Hello, Kitty August 12, 2016 at 12:27 pm

            I see many of those behaviors as well, and still think the streets work well. The reality is there is no infrastructure (aside from closing streets altogether) where there will not be some level of conflict between users.

            On these streets, the conflict is minor, occasional, and easily dealt with.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

            • Adam H.
              Adam H. August 12, 2016 at 12:31 pm

              Agreed, for the most part it is okay. Doesn’t mean we still can’t implement easy improvements to further reduce conflicts. Though, removal of parking is rarely easy…

              Recommended Thumb up 0

        • Adam H.
          Adam H. August 12, 2016 at 12:34 pm

          That said, I do agree with you that parking-protection is a poor solution. Cities love this, because it means they only have to remove a few parking spaces, but it is a poor compromize because it makes cyclists less visible. Ideally, we’d ban car parking along the cycleway and install a curb instead. Other creative solutions, such as bike corrals or flowerboxes in the buffer area work well, too.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

        • soren August 12, 2016 at 1:08 pm

          Riding downtown (absent the streets with uphill climbs) has always been easy and pleasant, as described by others.

          My interested but concerned partner strongly disagrees with you.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

          • Andrew N August 12, 2016 at 3:03 pm

            +1 Soren. I have a one-year-old, an experience that has altered my biking status from “very confident” all the time to “interested but very concerned” much of the time (when he is with me on the bike). It’s been eye-opening to say the least. I’ve always been supportive of well-designed separated infrastructure for bikes; now it’s much more personal. If we’re going to achieve our 2030 mode split goals, or even come close, we need much more dedicated space for people to get around on bicycles –all around, with good access to commercial areas, schools, etc– in such a way that one person answering a text while driving can’t (easily) kill a child.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

        • lop August 13, 2016 at 3:13 am

          >Riding downtown (absent the streets with uphill climbs) has always been easy and pleasant

          On the old lane on 2nd (or on 4th today) I could try to avoid turning drivers by taking the middle lane. But traffic is a mess. When there are backups filtering at 14 mph doesn’t seem safe, it’s too dependent on motorists not deciding they have to change lanes and start trying to shove their car over. Drivers don’t expect a bike behind a line of parked cars? They don’t expect a bike between two lanes of traffic either. If I filter much slower then traffic starts moving while I’m in between two cars, not the most comfortable or safe place to be. Sucking exhaust in a traffic jam is no fun. When there aren’t huge backups riding at the speed of the lights in the middle lane is easy. Until someone doesn’t signal their turn and the driver in the car behind them doesn’t feel like waiting for the guy stuck waiting for a person in the crosswalk and swerves into the middle lane with just a minor glance. Sure, it’s a predictable issue I can pick up and deal with safely if I’m on high alert, but it’s not ideal. The old layout wasn’t perfect. The old layout which is the current layout on much of 2nd still among others. And there would be some bikes there, but not that many really. May 2014 count at burnside approach from 2nd there were 92 bikes 4-6 pm, more than a thousand cars, more than two hundred pedestrians. A relative pittance chose to bike.

          The new lane isn’t great. Culture change takes time. Time for drivers to learn how to safely turn across the bike lane. To safely access their cars parked next to it. For pedestrians to look for bikes before stepping into the street. For cyclists to learn an appropriate speed and how to navigate the lane safely.

          Don’t like that the lane might not be safe at your preferred speed? Slow down a tad and the safety issue becomes absolutely one in your control, at least as much as riding in mixed traffic conditions. Yes, sometimes that means stopping short and letting a *%& in a car who cut you off go first, the guy that would’ve sent you to the hospital or the morgue if you weren’t paying attention. And riding slow enough that you can do that. How much time do you think this costs you? A quarter mile on second, maybe you get one extra red. That’s one minute. And another 5-30 seconds before you can turn onto the Burnside bridge. All these complaints about losing maybe 90 seconds. What delays are you willing to subject a far greater number of drivers to in order to improve cycling conditions? I get that it’s not just time, it’s not how you want to ride, and might be more stressful for you. That’s not fun to deal with. The legal issue is overblown. When is the last time Portland cops gave a ticket to a cyclist for riding outside of a bike lane for a quarter mile or less before turning when they weren’t holding up traffic? Bigger issue is motorist harassment. Culture change takes time.

          If someone’s preferred speed is too slow to take the lane on a bike blvd during rush hour without having to endure motorist harassment and you tell them to pull over to let people pass so they can get around in a system that accommodates you, do you think they often see 90 seconds of delay on their trip? Think riding in those conditions is stressful for them too? Don’t think people like that should get somewhere to ride in the city if it happens at your expense? Think they should have to wait until the political stars align to support getting rid of the mandatory sidepath law, or creating an exception to it for downtown? Think more people should just suck it up, get rid of their car, and learn how to ride in mixed traffic? How’s that working out? Why not let the city try another approach? Because you lose 90 seconds a day? If I’m wrong and the project is a disaster, injuries skyrocket and bike counts go down over the next year or two then the city can always just repaint 2nd again. I expect bike counts to go up at least moderately, and the 2017 injury counts to be lower relative to cycling levels than the average over the five years pre-implementation.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Adam H.
      Adam H. August 12, 2016 at 8:08 am

      Honestly, I’d much rather have a protected bike lane without the parking along it. Concrete curbs would be much better and greatly improve visibility.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Tom Hardy August 12, 2016 at 6:39 am

    Personally I never had a problem with traffic riding in the middle lane. I always had problems riding in either the left or right lane.
    Most likely I will be riding on 4th or 6th now. I break wheels in potholes.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • soren August 12, 2016 at 8:30 am

      I have serious issues with riding in the middle lane downtown. For example, I dislike huffing toxic tailpipe while sitting sandwiched between cars in traffic jams. I for one am glad that PBOT has given me a way to avoid huffing tailpipe without paying $260 tickets.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Hello, Kitty
        Hello, Kitty August 12, 2016 at 10:40 am

        If you can ride at 12-14 mph, it is fully legal to ride in any lane of your choosing, so I don’t know why you’d get a ticket for doing so…

        Recommended Thumb up 0

        • Spiffy August 12, 2016 at 10:47 am

          there’s no exception in ORS 814.420 allowing you to take the lane because you’re keeping up with traffic…

          http://www.oregonlaws.org/ors/814.420

          Recommended Thumb up 0

          • Dan A August 16, 2016 at 7:06 am

            Has anyone here ever been cited for breaking this law in Portland? I’d like to hear the circumstances. I bend it regularly.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

          • Hello, Kitty
            Hello, Kitty August 16, 2016 at 12:13 pm

            My comment only applies to streets without a bike lane. With a lane you ride where your told, and you’ll like it. Without one, you are free to choose what’s best for you.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

            • Adam H.
              Adam H. August 16, 2016 at 12:43 pm

              On streets without a bike lane, what often “works best for me” is the sidewalk.

              Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Dan A August 16, 2016 at 1:26 pm

                You don’t take the lane downtown?

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty August 16, 2016 at 1:28 pm

                Ironic, given that the speeds are typically half that of Clinton…

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Adam H.
                Adam H. August 16, 2016 at 1:30 pm

                I take the lane downtown, but will often take the sidewalk on streets like 50th, Powell, Foster, Outer Division (though there is a crappy bike lane there), etc.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

            • soren August 16, 2016 at 2:19 pm

              unless someone is riding at the “normal speed of traffic” it is generally illegal to ride anywhere other than “as close as practicable to the right curb or edge”. and while it is certainly possible for some to ride at the 20 mph cars travel at downtown*, few people do this consistently. so most “experienced and competent” commuters are frequent violators of this ORS statute.

              *this behavior is silly given that the lights are timed for ~15 mph but it’s ubiquitous

              Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Dan A August 16, 2016 at 2:22 pm

                Has anyone here been cited for this?

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • soren August 16, 2016 at 3:25 pm

                when officer balzer pulled me over last year the very first thing he shouted at me was that i was required to ride on the right side of the road. i ended up with a $260 citation for “unsafe passing on the left”. i also learned from legal counsel that it was impossible to beat this ticket (regardless of the circumstances) because traffic court always sides with law enforcement when statutory but subjective safety is invoked.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Dan A August 16, 2016 at 9:32 pm

                Isn’t that the kooky cop who hates cyclists?

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Dan A August 18, 2016 at 9:55 am

                Has anyone been cited by a real cop?

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty August 16, 2016 at 2:23 pm

                I would argue that the “normal speed of traffic” downtown is whatever the signals allow it to be. Some drivers do speed up and slow down a ridiculous amount, others are more sane; either way, the average speed is the same, and it’s easy to cycle at that speed.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Adam H.
                Adam H. August 16, 2016 at 2:33 pm

                easy to cycle at that speed

                Going downhill or flat, maybe. Uphill, not so much.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Eric Leifsdad August 16, 2016 at 3:03 pm

                Some drivers do speed up and slow down a ridiculous amount, others are more sane

                When I drive my car at the average speed of the lights through downtown, drivers cut in front of me to get to the red, then I have to stop for them every. single. block. Nobody can maintain their sanity with this ridiculous behavior. Resisting the temptation to give them a nudge with my leftover momentum when the light turns green…

                A 250W hub motor and a bit of effort will get me most of the greens up broadway late at night, which is when I think the progression has the fastest timing (daytime 8 up, 13 down, night 12 up, 15 down? We need some automated advisory speed signs and/or maybe some red light window washers — the sooner you get to the red light, the more of your windshield gets wiped with muddy newspaper.)

                Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Spiffy August 12, 2016 at 7:32 am

    “The 2nd Avenue bikeway is the most ambitious physically protected bike lane downtown.”

    “Bike lane curbside buffered from parked cars with plastic wands”

    “that led to the buffered bike lane on 3rd”

    I’m still not comfortable with people describing this facility as protected… yes, cars that are parked will provide protection, when they’re parked… so it’s an occasionally protected buffered lane…

    no cars? no protection…

    it’s also open to the problem of “wrong pedal” when people are parking and hit the gas instead of the brake… which is why it’s only protected while the cars are parked…

    the pictures seem to show it’s mostly not protected… but during peak business hours it’s probably protected most of the time… other than those driveways…

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Paikiala August 12, 2016 at 9:37 am

      S,
      It’s a language thing. Think in terms of a ‘filter’. It can be so porous that it stops very little from crossing, up to so non-porous that hardly anything gets through. Where ‘protected’ occurs in this continuum is a bit subjective.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Spiffy August 12, 2016 at 10:45 am

        yes, it’s a language thing, and language matters… I’d rather they not use confusing language…

        Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Chris I August 12, 2016 at 7:35 am

    The concrete barriers will do a lot to reduce the left-hook risk.

    For all of the people on here saying they “never had issues taking the middle lane”, that might be fine for you, but it is not fine for less confident riders, people with small children on their bikes, small children riding bikes, etc.

    I, too, am confident enough to ride in the middle lane, but I would never do it with my kid in tow.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • fourknees August 12, 2016 at 8:04 am

      I agree. This is very welcomed when I am downtown with my children.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Spiffy August 12, 2016 at 8:19 am

      nothing makes drivers take more care than taking the lane with a kid in tow…

      Recommended Thumb up 0

    • pooperazzi August 12, 2016 at 8:51 am

      Completely agree. One of the big problems with downtown is that there’s no way to safely traverse it with children. Remains a problem for E-W

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Hello, Kitty
        Hello, Kitty August 12, 2016 at 10:43 am

        Oak/Stark?

        Recommended Thumb up 0

        • was carless August 13, 2016 at 11:23 am

          AFAIK, Oak/Stark doesn’t go to any schools or daycares. Great if you want to get to Powell’s Books or the Burnside crossover of I-405.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

          • Hello, Kitty
            Hello, Kitty August 13, 2016 at 11:49 am

            Well, like most streets, if it doesn’t go where you want to go, it’s not terribly useful.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Spiffy August 12, 2016 at 7:38 am

    looks like it needs 3x as many bike lane symbols to me… one mid-block and one end-block…

    people don’t see the bike lane symbol as soon as they turn because they’re busy making sure they don’t run people over and don’t actually have time to read road signs for at least a car length…

    one of my pet peeves about how they always put signs at the beginning of the block that I can’t read unless I stop as soon as I turn to take in all the distractions…

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • I wear many hats August 12, 2016 at 8:19 am

    Vehicular cyclists will hate this, but it should be safer for most cyclists, though slower. The addition of curbs @ the left turns will drastically reduce left turn conflicts.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • JeffS August 12, 2016 at 10:17 am

      No, it should FEEL safer for most cyclists. That’s not the same thing, though advocates who are just trying to trick people onto their bikes tend to ignore that.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

  • AJ_Bikes August 12, 2016 at 8:21 am

    I’ve already enjoyed a brief ride in it, and away from the intersections, it’s definitely less stressful and feels safer, but the left-hook concern at intersections is still very real. The separate bike signals in Chicago and Seattle PBLs have always worked very well for both those driving and those biking. Between signals and the concrete curbs, that should hopefully be enough to minimize left hook concerns, but the driveways will be a continuing issue (though I only remember one GARAGE on the left side of 2nd; hopefully the other driveways go away soon as new development removes the parking lots). And I really enjoy the “bike boxes” for turning; the signal phases are short enough that if I get to one on a green, I’m not waiting long, and if I get there on a red, I can just position myself and go. Keep it up, PBOT, but please get those finishing touches done soon!

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • AJ_Bikes August 12, 2016 at 8:27 am

    I’m also not sold that left-side PBls are preferable to right-side PBLs, but I do think in the right context, they can be. With all the traffic turning onto the bridges, I think 2nd is a place where a left-side PBL leaves fewer conflicts. Another example I can think of is Jefferson/Columbia. Left-side, wider PBLs (to leave room for faster bikes to pass slower ones) would be great there, as it would remove the duck-and-weave “dance” with TriMet buses that seems to happen every other block there. I’ve seen WAY too many close calls there (both while biking myself and while riding on the bus). Actually, if PBOT could do that and then extend 2nd/3rd down to Jefferson/Columbia…

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • galavantista August 12, 2016 at 9:10 am

    I was SO EXCITED to take 2nd Ave yesterday! There are some improvements needed, yes, and some time for all road users to get used to it, but it’s great to have a dedicated space for people riding bikes that’s also protected. I’ve always hated downtown non-bike-facility streets and the chaos of mixing with cars, being unsure what is the best travel lane, navigating making turns, etc. Hooray for order — and for making it even better in the near future, PBOT.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • rick August 12, 2016 at 9:25 am

      Yes. I’m grateful, too.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Hopeful August 12, 2016 at 5:31 pm

        I also love it. Thanks PBOT. More please!

        Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Paikiala August 12, 2016 at 9:38 am

    Spiffy,
    Regarding protected bike lanes, it’s a language thing. Think in terms of a ‘filter’. It can be so porous that it stops very little from crossing, up to so non-porous that hardly anything gets through. Where ‘protected’ occurs in this continuum is a bit subjective.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Josh August 12, 2016 at 9:41 am

    BrianC
    – My *expectation* is that now drivers will *not* want to see bicycles in the travel lane. (You have a dedicated lane, now stay in it…)

    I had the same thought when the new bike lane went in on SW 3rd, but I haven’t personally experienced any friction from motorists when I take the standard lanes. I take that stretch nearly every weekday, morning rush hour; YMMV.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • B. Carfree August 12, 2016 at 9:44 am

    Nice photos Jonathan. I’m particularly impressed that you made the effort to show the worst features of this build in spite of generally being a big fan of separation. (I mean you appear to be a fan of separation, not me; maybe I’m wrong.)

    Well done journalism! You could have simply shown a few photos that featured the positive mid-block aspects and chosen places where the puddles don’t cover half the bike lane, but you chose to emphasize the warts. I think that is incredibly important since those warts are where cyclists are being injured and even killed. Chapeau.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • eawrist August 12, 2016 at 9:52 am

    Thank you PBOT! Keep them coming!

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Work Account August 12, 2016 at 10:19 am

    I generally ride with cars when I’m downtown. Force them to pay attention to where I am.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Chris August 12, 2016 at 10:21 am

    I have mixed feelings on this implementation so far. This is on my route home daily from Stark to head east over Burnside. I used to always take the far right lane on 2nd and turn right on Burnside. The lights were timed for slow traffic and never had an issue. A two stage turn box at Stark and 2nd would have been my one suggestion.

    Riding this week, there’s been puddles from light rain days later. People parking aren’t looking for bikes and standing in the lane. People were walking in it around Ankeny or just standing in it and there’s no room to maneuver around. The turn at Burnside is tricky as you have to look left to check for other cyclists and immediately look to make sure someone isn’t turning right on red to get on the bridge as well as fairly high pedestrian traffic there during the evening rush.

    I appreciate the increase in bike facilities downtown, but I feel this street actually was fine mixed. I think the treatment would have been better on another street first. Maybe for other riders its an improvement, but I miss the old configuration.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • eawrist August 12, 2016 at 10:26 am

      Presumably there is a learning curve for people who have never interacted with a PBL, particularly for people who are parking cars. As a bare-bones project, i.e. without signals for bikes, seems like implementation is going fairly well.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Eric Leifsdad August 12, 2016 at 1:11 pm

      Why isn’t this lane on the right side of the street?

      You don’t have to stay in the bike lane if you’re preparing to turn. http://www.oregonlaws.org/ors/814.420

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Chris I August 12, 2016 at 1:33 pm

        Having it on the right would have greatly increased the potential for turning conflicts.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

        • Chris August 12, 2016 at 2:58 pm

          I agree with the left hand placement here. The right two lanes of 2nd turn at Burnside onto the bridge, that would’ve been a troublesome crossing.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Ben F August 12, 2016 at 10:45 am

    I think the reason that this is superior to just having people ride in the lane with cars is that:

    1. It encourages bicycling for the 8-80 demographic (kids to elderly) which would not feel comfortable cycling in a traffic lane.
    2. It encourages a calmer riding style (you don’t need to go 15 mph to keep up with cars, can ride a more comfortable, bike-share type bike).
    3. It gives people riding bikes a clear, dedicated lane to ride during times of heavy auto congestion. To me, this is huge! I, for one, don’t enjoy salmoning between idling cars or sitting behind them in the lane.

    Thanks PBOT – please do more! Separated lanes, as shown by the Dutch, are the way to increase safety and numbers in cycling culture.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Andy K August 12, 2016 at 11:44 am

    Well done, PBOT! This is the kind of safety upgrade that can turn a car or bus commuter into a cyclist!

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Kyle Banerjee August 12, 2016 at 11:53 am

    Anytime cyclists are separated out on left or the right PBLs, hooks should be expected.

    But given the amount of space to work with and low speed of the cars, this isn’t dangerous unless you don’t pay attention.

    Like Carfree, I’m not convinced this separation makes things safer nor have I ever thought PBL sections of my ride were safer than other sections.

    When you’re more visible, hooks are less frequent and temporarily leaving the lane and get behind or pass on the left of vehicles is an option to maintain your own momentum, help the cars keep rolling, and improve safety.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Adam H.
      Adam H. August 12, 2016 at 12:15 pm

      hooks should be expected

      Not if proper bike signaling is installed. Any time you have simultaneous straight bike traffic and left-turning car traffic, there will be conflicts. This can be easily solved with a dedicated bike signal phase with left turns for cars not allowed during that phase. This is what is done in other cities with protected bike lanes.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Kyle Banerjee August 12, 2016 at 1:46 pm

        Yes, there will be conflict. But rather than constantly stopping traffic and bikes alike, it’s better to keep the flow going from a speed and safety perspective.

        For people who don’t like to mix with traffic, there is always the option of dismounting and crossing as a ped — which is faster than waiting for a light signal even after accounting for the fact that some cars won’t stop. Don’t forget a light will stop forward motion for the bikes.

        The downtown traffic already crawls and the lights are timed so slowly that they’re already too easy to outrun on a bike going uphill unless you are on a heavy rig. Downhill or flat is just painful — I don’t know how the drivers stand it. All we need to complete the gridlock are gaggles of bikes that are so slow to start that you have to wait for multiple light cycles to get through an intersection even when you’re on a bike and there are zero cars blocking the way.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

      • JeffS August 13, 2016 at 12:40 pm

        “not if” the lane isn’t built either.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Audrey August 12, 2016 at 12:18 pm

    Looking right now at the bike lane completely blocked by construction activity at Couch. :/

    They had parked a dumpster in the middle of the bike lane yesterday, but moved it into the parking lane a few hours later. I cheered, but now today its roped off anyway. People on bikes have to swerve into traffic out from behind parked cars to get around it.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Peter Hass August 12, 2016 at 12:33 pm

    I’ve ridden this new bike lane a couple of times and didn’t like it. I was nearly left hooked the first time on it. That may just be some initial confusion on the part of drivers. The pavement is just as rough and bumpy to ride as the pictures show. The right turn east onto the Burnside bridge is confusing and not very intuitive. Oh well, it’s only a few blocks and maybe its poor first impression will fade with the paint.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • MindfulCylist August 12, 2016 at 12:53 pm

    Generally, I don’t complain much about added bike infrastructure. Even if it is far from perfect, I just look at it as something that it usually better than what it was before and any improvement is going to make it a little better.

    Then I was going home on Wednesday and rode this and I will not be Mr. Nice Guy about it.

    -I am hidden from cars that may be turning left. I was nearly left hooked the 300 feet or so into it.
    -The bike lane is too narrow and is hard to pass slower riders.
    -Potholes.
    -It is confusing to cars now where to park.
    -It was easy to go keep my momentum going to climb the bridge and I basically have to come to a dead stop now.

    I think I am going to continue using the right hand lane. It’s safer and easier.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Adam H.
      Adam H. August 12, 2016 at 1:00 pm

      This was pretty much my experience riding as well. These problems are easily solvable, but they cost money. Concrete curbs instead of paint, removal of parking, and dedicated bicycle signaling all would vastly improve this protected bike lane. These low-budget safety improvement projects are disappointing, to say the least. Especially when we compare them to projects that received the proper funding, such as the Moody Avenue cycle track or the East Bank Esplanade.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Eric Leifsdad August 12, 2016 at 12:57 pm

    Why is it on the left? Seems like with left-side parking it could have been a much narrower counter-flow bike lane and we could use the space for a regular parking-protected lane on the right.

    Driver’s doors open more than passenger doors, so there’s a nice buffer painted here. But, if you were biking the other way, you would be facing the driver and the blunt side of the door while riding more slowly because it’s uphill and signal progression is going to limit you to a walking speed.

    So, this lane could be 5-6ft narrower with a southbound design. Now take that space and a bit more from the traffic lanes and put the northbound parking-protected lane on the right side.

    It should be easier to see who you’re about to hook out your left window, but how is that working on Williams?

    Some left-turn boulders should help and will make the crosswalk much more comfortable.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • kittens August 12, 2016 at 1:52 pm

    Big fan of separated, protected bike lanes. But why on earth are they doing all this crap downtown?

    It’s just not an issue there. Its fine. I ride in traffic and it feels safe. It is not like families with little kids are clamoring to ride through downtown all of the sudden. There are tons of places this project would make sense and this is not one of them. Maybe PBOT thought it would be easier to implement rather than somewhere which truly needs it, like NE Couch heading down the hill to the Burnside.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • John Liu
      John Liu August 12, 2016 at 2:31 pm

      Thank the cyclists who don’t feel happy until they are walled behind concrete barriers.

      And then they don’t feel happy until they have to sit waiting for bike-only signal phases.

      And then they don’t feel happy until more signal phases are added for them to turn right from a left side bike lane.

      And then they don’t feel happy because they are trapped in a crowd of bikes squeezed into a walled-off bike trench, waiting through long complicated multi mode signal phases, painfully stop-and-going their way through downtown at 5 mph.

      And they complain that drivers don’t see cyclists as equal users of downtown’s streets.

      And they won’t figure out that this happened because they didn’t want, or were too timid, to be an equal user of those streets. They demanded segregated bike infrastructure, in an area where the roads are flat and traffic only moves at 15 mph.

      Meanwhile, other cyclists, who knew how to ride in the city and could be bothered to pedal at 15 mph, were happily using those roads on an equal basis with cars.

      Until downtown cycling was ruined for everybody.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • kittens August 12, 2016 at 2:41 pm

        I like your hyperbole:)
        I think in summary you are saying that creating segregated infrastructure leads to dependency and inherent inequality of access. Agreed. Downtown traffic moves so slowly there is practically no reason NOT to ride in lanes. There are tons of places beyond that where need really does exist.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

        • Kyle Banerjee August 12, 2016 at 3:12 pm

          Actually there is. The lanes typically move so slowly you’re better off on the bike path.

          There are plenty of places in town where there is no bike lane or usable shoulder and traffic moves 40+mph. There are plenty of other places where the traffic isn’t quite that fast, but the lane just butts into a curb.

          Why we expend so much energy on making areas that are already incredibly slow even slower and talk of being hooked at parking lot speeds as if it were a brush with death when there are places that are genuinely challenging to bike is beyond me.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

      • soren August 12, 2016 at 2:47 pm

        And then they don’t feel happy because they are trapped in a crowd of bikes squeezed into a walled-off bike trench…

        Replace “trench” with “gutter” and your comment becomes a repeat of the vehicular cyclist anti-bike lane position.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

        • Hello, Kitty
          Hello, Kitty August 12, 2016 at 3:32 pm

          Who’s going to join me in the gutter? It’s nice over here!

          Recommended Thumb up 0

        • John Liu
          John Liu August 14, 2016 at 10:27 pm

          I prefer “trench” as it connotes fortification, Maginot Line, immobility, and misery.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

          • Hello, Kitty
            Hello, Kitty August 16, 2016 at 12:09 pm

            Ugh… I think I have a case of trench wheel.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

        • Eric Leifsdad August 15, 2016 at 2:35 pm

          I think this whole VC/downtown argument is another symptom of car-centric thinking. Let’s not argue about silly compromised bike lanes anymore. The 21st century is 16 years old already. A bunch of kids from one end of our “8-80 crowd” are driving cars now, and a bunch from the other end are gone. Close downtown to cars, reclaim the outer lanes of any substandard arterials, divert and obstruct neighborhood rat-runs, and hang a climate-controlled bikeway alongside I5.

          Who do we not have Sunday Parkways on every parkway every Sunday?

          Recommended Thumb up 0

        • Eric Leifsdad August 15, 2016 at 2:44 pm

          I think this whole VC/downtown argument is another symptom of car-centric thinking. How are we still arguing about door zone bike lanes? The 21st century is 16 years old already. A bunch of kids from one end of our “8-80 crowd” are driving cars now, and a bunch from the other end are gone. Close downtown to cars, reclaim the outer lanes of any substandard arterials, divert and obstruct neighborhood rat-runs, and hang a climate-controlled bikeway alongside I5.

          Who do we not have Sunday Parkways on every parkway every Sunday?

          ORS 814.420 “failure to use bike lane” is a class D violation, just like 30mph in a 20.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

          • Eric Leifsdad August 15, 2016 at 9:38 pm

            “who” -> how. How do we not have Sunday Parkways on every parkway every Sunday?

            Bonus error: 2 copies and I can’t edit either one.

            Don’t worry about that car following 10ft behind you at 13mph, people never make mistakes!

            Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Adam H.
        Adam H. August 12, 2016 at 3:04 pm

        Not everyone is okay sharing lanes with cars, and not everyone cares about riding fast. I for one, don’t mind being stopped by red lights downtown if it means drivers won’t be able to turn across the bike lane while I’m riding in it. Additionally, there are smart ways to time signals in cyclists’ favor. There has been some excellent research in the Netherlands to this regard.

        By the way, downtown is most certainly not flat. There is an incline starting at around 6th Avenue that is exacerbated when riding a heavy bike (such as Biketown) and gets steeper the further south you are.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

        • Hello, Kitty
          Hello, Kitty August 12, 2016 at 3:12 pm

          I don’t think we’ll ever have a city where cyclists don’t have to share space with cars, where cars don’t need to worry about trucks, where pedestrians don’t have to interact with bikes, and where buses and LRT have their own dedicated right-of-way.

          Sharing space is going to be a fact of life for a LONG time. We need to find ways to get along with one another, and to accommodate all the different ways people move around.

          I would be among those frustrated if I had to stop every block as I traversed downtown, regardless of what mode I was using.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

          • Adam H.
            Adam H. August 12, 2016 at 3:24 pm

            Bikes and cars are not on equal footing – not even close. Cars create a vastly higher safety hazard than a bike, even if operated by the same jεrk. Therefore, the vast majority of “getting along” needs to be done by the people operating motor vehicles. The party more capable of causing harm needs the most regulation and control.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

            • Hello, Kitty
              Hello, Kitty August 12, 2016 at 3:38 pm

              At downtown speeds, cars don’t pose much danger. Trucks are the vehicles that kill people.

              Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Adam H.
                Adam H. August 12, 2016 at 3:41 pm

                But perception matters too. Downtown may be safe based on data, but prospective riders don’t look at data, they use their feelings. If it doesn’t feel safe, many people simply won’t ride. Good bike infrastructure should not only be safe, it should feel safe, and those two things are not always 100% congruent.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty August 12, 2016 at 3:55 pm

                The only way that people who feel unsafe when biking around cars will ever feel safe riding downtown is if cars are simply banned. If that’s how you feel, I think you should openly advocate for that position. I don’t agree that’s a viable solution, but on the other hand, I won’t oppose you.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Kyle Banerjee August 12, 2016 at 4:14 pm

                Perception is important. But how are the people actually going to get downtown? How will they get around to destinations in other areas? The reason the roads are so choked isn’t people driving tiny distances from their downtown apartments.

                Anyone who doesn’t like the downtown cycling infrastructure is going to like what they have to use to get there and back much less.

                We can build a downtown oasis where bike share provides an excellent option for those whose travel needs consist primarily of short hops in the core. But it won’t offer much to anyone else.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Adam H.
                Adam H. August 12, 2016 at 4:56 pm

                There’s a big difference between sharing a lane with cars and riding alongside cars in a dedicated and fully separated cycling lane. The latter is far more comfortable and will get more people riding.

                I disagree with the argument that other parts of Portland should get cycling infrastructure before downtown does. The entire city should be getting cycling infrastructure — there shouldn’t be an either-or situation. We also shouldn’t be designing infra for people with 40 mile commutes (i.e. fast cycling). That’s something that will likely remain at the fringes, even if we have dedicated cycling infra metro-wide. For those situations, things like public transport and bike share can make a 40 mile commute possible without a car.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Kyle Banerjee August 12, 2016 at 5:37 pm

                The entire city does need it. But I’d argue that even if there are some bad streets downtown, there are good ways of getting around by bike even if some could be better. When you go out a way, sometimes all the options are bad.

                What I was trying to say is that if there is at least some cycling infrastructure more widely deployed, cycling becomes less of a fringe activity and it becomes accessible to people everywhere.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Dan A August 16, 2016 at 7:20 am

                I would feel safer around cars if I knew that they were only in possession of people who are qualified to drive.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

          • Kyle Banerjee August 12, 2016 at 3:53 pm

            Constantly slowing things down is not the answer, and cycling needs to be viable for people who aren’t just using it as an alternative to walking if we want people to actually do it.

            If you want people commuting by bike, it needs to work for people who don’t live within a few miles of their jobs since that’s the lion’s share of the workforce. It needs to be fun.

            I’ve commuted by bike for over 35 years. It’s been my only mode of transport to work in Portland, and before that, I had a 40+ mile RT bike commute for over 10 years.

            If we succeed in making cycling too miserable, I won’t bother anymore. I might even ride in a car. Even if I can’t stand driving myself, I’m sure someone will give me a ride for gas money. I might not enjoy the road experience, but at least I can enjoy the company.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

            • Adam H.
              Adam H. August 12, 2016 at 4:58 pm

              See my reply above. I should also note that we should be slowing things down for everyone, since slower almost universally means safer. Those people with 40 mile bike commutes are very far from the norm.

              Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty August 12, 2016 at 5:00 pm

                Everyone walks. It’s the only way.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Dan A August 16, 2016 at 7:22 am

                Yes, by all means, lets make cycling less efficient.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Adam H.
                Adam H. August 16, 2016 at 9:00 am

                Efficiency ≠ speed.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Dan A August 16, 2016 at 11:20 am

                15mph is not fast. If you want me to ride 5mph, it will take me 3 hours to get into work. If that’s not inefficient, it’s certainly impractical.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Adam H.
                Adam H. August 16, 2016 at 11:33 am

                Hey now. I average 8-12 mph, not 5 mph. 😉

                Recommended Thumb up 0

            • soren August 12, 2016 at 5:05 pm

              If we succeed in making cycling too miserable, I won’t bother anymore. I might even ride in a car.

              interested but concerned >>> bike commuters who like PBLs > bike commuters who tolerate PBLs > bike commuters who do not like PBLs but will continue cycling >>> bike commuters who will quit cycling due to “miserable” PBLs

              Recommended Thumb up 0

            • JeffS August 12, 2016 at 7:22 pm

              The competent commuter is shunned around these parts.

              I know, it seems obvious that the people who have put in the miles have some wisdom to share, but the squeaky wheels of Portland will never accept that. The victim mentality of this place is difficult to overcome.

              Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Kyle Banerjee August 12, 2016 at 11:29 pm

                You’d think those with experience would remember what starting out was like and how they learned things. But they don’t know or remember anything. That’s why it’s so much easier for people who haven’t been through that process to know what’s going on.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • soren August 14, 2016 at 10:48 am

                One of the things I love about bike commuting or commuting by foot is that neither requires much “experience” or “competence”. And, IMO, the sooner the self-proclaimed “competence” reflected in the comments here gets diluted out by masses of new bike commuters, the better!

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Kyle Banerjee August 14, 2016 at 4:17 pm

                It doesn’t require so much experience or competence as much as simple consideration and common sense.

                Those that refuse to use these things will find themselves in constant adventures with meanies while others ride thousands of miles for years on end without a mishap. Funny how that works out.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • soren August 15, 2016 at 1:40 pm

                “I do not understand the obsession on this blog with making downtown slower. It’s already too slow, has the most bike infrastructure

                I’ve been riding northbound through the downtown core for close to two decades and I have yet to find any of this bike infrastructure. What am I missing?

                Recommended Thumb up 0

        • JeffS August 12, 2016 at 7:17 pm

          yea. We get it. You’re the spokesperson for the most frightened cyclists in town.

          You pretend to speak for others to lend weight to your argument, but it’s simply not true. You couldn’t care less about others. You’ve said as much multiple times.

          I have no problem with self-interest. I have a serious problem with self-interest masked as concern for others.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

        • John Liu
          John Liu August 15, 2016 at 8:25 pm

          Sorry, downtown is flat. Except for those who can’t ride faster than 8 mph.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Ben F August 15, 2016 at 2:51 pm

        I am a proponent of dedicated and protected bike lanes because they are used in the best cycle cities on the world. They’ve figured things out through trial and error and they provide great test cases for different infrastructure. I’m thinking about cities such as those here: http://copenhagenize.eu/index/

        I agree that if cycling grew massively then it could get slow, but cycling would remain an efficient and safe method of transportation as long as the infrastructure was increased to accommodate growing demand.

        Not only this, but rather than seeing them as “concrete barriers” I see these lanes as conduits for getting around the cars when traffic inevitably backs up as our population continues to grow.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Ben August 12, 2016 at 1:57 pm

    It is completely baffling to me that PBOT terminated the 2nd and 3rd ave. bike lanes at Oak, making them useless to anyone who commutes via the Hawthorne.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • soren August 12, 2016 at 4:55 pm

      The plan is to extend them (see Map 5):

      http://www.portlandoregon.gov/bps/article/585857

      Recommended Thumb up 0

    • paikiala August 17, 2016 at 11:48 am

      1. Budget.
      2. They were business led projects, so extending them would cost more and cause delay.

      Let the businesses farther south know how much you like the lanes.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Stephen Keller August 12, 2016 at 2:31 pm

    My biggest beef is they put it on the wrong side of the road.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • J_R August 12, 2016 at 3:40 pm

    Holy Sh*t! Confusion reigns. This introduces a second version of “cross bikes” described in the last week.

    “Cross bikes” used for these locations on Burnside are where motorists are REQUIRED to yield because the motorists are making turns across the bike lane.

    As we saw, and discussed at length, earlier this week when “cross bikes” are located where a minor street crosses a major street, a motorist who is going straight on the major street is NOT required to yield since the “cross bike” is advisory only.

    So, a turning motorist is required to yield at a “cross bike,” but a motorist going straight doesn’t have to. Right?

    Is anyone thinking before they implement these new schemes?

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • B. Carfree August 13, 2016 at 12:41 pm

      The apparent answer to your question is NO!

      I suspect that anything that can be called “bikey” is considered acceptable for implementation whether it works to make the situation better or worse for people on bikes. I’m seeing this in many locales and it’s just nuts, imo.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Dan A August 16, 2016 at 7:24 am

        Maybe there was a sale on green paint?

        Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Robert Burchett August 12, 2016 at 4:30 pm

    The green spot thingies mean ‘sometimes you will see bikes in this general area’. That’s all they mean.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Mark Smith August 13, 2016 at 2:56 am

    The brave vehicular cyclists in most of us will always resent the protected lane-for a little while. Until you take out a friend or a child who isn’t “brave” with 2 ton death machines around them. Sounds to me like folks need to drop the mandatory bike lane law.

    Downtown needs to slow down. Driving in downtown needs to be borderline miserable. It’s wasteful for one person-always. If you are driving with someone-it’s not so bad…as you have company.

    The car had it’s heyday. Now it’s time for that to end. Bring on the protected lanes and the end to the door zone lanes.

    Pssst, it’s not quite legal to lanesplit with a bike either..but we do it.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Hello, Kitty
      Hello, Kitty August 13, 2016 at 10:58 am

      Driving in downtown is already quite slow. If we slowed it further, cycling would become unbearable because cyclists have to travel at the same speed.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • soren August 14, 2016 at 10:40 am

        If we slowed it further, cycling would become unbearable because cyclists have to travel at the same speed.

        That limitation is an entirely self-created one.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

        • Hello, Kitty
          Hello, Kitty August 14, 2016 at 11:49 am

          Meaning I should learn to enjoy riding at 8MPH?

          Recommended Thumb up 0

          • lop August 14, 2016 at 1:03 pm

            Or separate lanes so you don’t have to be slowed down by car traffic jams.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

          • Adam H.
            Adam H. August 15, 2016 at 9:57 am

            Riding slow is actually quite nice. You should try it sometime. 🙂

            Recommended Thumb up 0

            • dwk August 15, 2016 at 10:48 am

              Some of us need to get someplace other than the coffee shop……

              Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty August 15, 2016 at 10:59 am

                Like the bar. Now get out of my way!

                Recommended Thumb up 0

            • Dan A August 16, 2016 at 7:26 am

              Riding fast is actually quite fun. You should try it sometime.

              Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Adam H.
                Adam H. August 16, 2016 at 8:59 am

                I have, it makes me nervous. I ride the brakes going downhill, even. 🙂

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • soren August 16, 2016 at 11:58 am

                you are not the only one — my partner dislikes riding fast downhill as well.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

    • JeffS August 13, 2016 at 12:37 pm

      So you want to slow down everyone else, then break the law so you’re not impacted?

      Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Kyle Banerjee August 14, 2016 at 7:02 am

      Driving in downtown is already miserable, and making the lives of others more difficult is not a compelling use of resources.

      To work best, cycling infrastructure must balance many needs and not simply be built to accommodate the fears of those who don’t ride at all or who are just getting started. Just as a certain amount of skill and judgment is required to drive in different areas, it’s not crazy to think other road users might need at least some ability.

      I do not understand the obsession on this blog with making downtown slower. It’s already too slow, has the most bike infrastructure, and is the easiest part of the metro area to ride. If we want more people cycling, we need a game plan that goes beyond focusing on a tiny area that’s already in good shape when other areas need attention so much more.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • soren August 15, 2016 at 1:39 pm

        “I do not understand the obsession on this blog with making downtown slower. It’s already too slow, has the most bike infrastructure

        I’ve been riding northbound through the downtown core for close to two decades and I have yet to find any of this bike infrastructure. What am I missing?

        Recommended Thumb up 0

        • Mark smith August 15, 2016 at 1:46 pm

          Wait, is city hall surrounded by protected bike lanes already? Nope….not yet. Checked. Still a race track of one ways.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

          • lop August 15, 2016 at 4:02 pm

            No but the AAA building is surrounded by non car options. MAX and a bus lane on one side, two sides have streetcar tracks, and the fourth has a parking protected bike lane. The war on cars is real my friend.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

            • Dan A August 16, 2016 at 7:28 am

              I think of it more as a war on people, which cars have been winning for the last 100+ years. We’re just fighting back.

              Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty August 16, 2016 at 1:31 pm

                We must defeat Skynet and its army of marauding machines of motorized mayhem!

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Dan A August 16, 2016 at 2:23 pm

                That’s the spirit!

                Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Jeffrey Yasskin August 13, 2016 at 9:05 am

    I really like the lane, despite the potholes, but I’d love for them to find a better way to turn right onto Burnside. Moving from the right to the left turned an instant turn into a wait for the signal.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • BetsyG August 15, 2016 at 7:07 pm

    I was left hooked on Friday coming out of the lane to cross on a green light by a driver who never even looked. Rang bell and yelled, LOUD. The car behind her started to honk when she saw me, but then she panicked, slammed on her brakes as I was breaking. Bike and I are fine.

    I ride 2nd and 3rd 5 days a week as well. From Hawthorne bridge to Davis then turn into the Pearl. I loved the middle lane. Always felt safe, rode the timed lights and was always with traffic. Now… hmmmmm Might find a new route.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Hello, Kitty
      Hello, Kitty August 16, 2016 at 12:18 am

      Don’t despair… there’s still some good streets left! Try 4th… it still has a (legal) middle lane.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • soren August 16, 2016 at 9:21 am

        the central city multimodal safety project will likely fix that in the next few years!

        https://www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/71158

        it will be interesting to see how the self-proclaimed “experienced and competent” minority cope with change. will they decide to ride slowly and legally or ride in a faster but “making us all look bad” manner. i personally hope to see more fast scofflaws on our roads since i believe that the only way we will get the mandatory sidepath law repealed is via large scale disobedience.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Robert Burchett August 16, 2016 at 1:45 pm

    Just saw a wannabe left hook at SW 2nd and Oak. Actually the MV came to a stop 3 or 4 feet short so no foul.

    Could it be that PBOT is using LIDAR to find the scrappiest pavement to stripe for bike lanes? 🙁

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Andrew Kreps August 29, 2016 at 3:08 pm

    Notably missing from the images is the part on the NW side where the view is completely obscured by a long-term construction dumpster at Davis. It’s a collision waiting to happen, and it already has.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • lop August 29, 2016 at 5:55 pm

    Compare the density of plastic delineators by the little plaza near Voodoo on third to 2nd avenue, and the lack of them on SW Broadway and NE Multnomah. Then look at where people park. Pretty good by voodoo, not as good on 2nd, and even worse on SW Broadway and NE Multnomah. The thin plastic poles densely spaced seem to do a pretty decent job of telling people where to park. Maybe time to install more of them to try to keep the parking protected bike lanes from becoming parked obstructed bike lanes?

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Adam H.
    Adam H. August 30, 2016 at 10:00 am

    Why doesn’t this bike lane connect to the Hawthorne Bridge path at all?

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Robert Towne January 22, 2018 at 9:50 am

    This bike lane is the worst part of downtown riding. When people turn left by those planters, they NEVER look until they are already in the bike lane. This morning I almost got smashed by a huge City of Portland truck. Last week I almost get hit by a SUV not paying attention. At least once or twice a week this happens. Not to mention all the trash, potholes, and water that piles up in the bike lane. If the city doesn’t put something up better than those planters and educate the community someone will get killed if they haven’t already.

    Recommended Thumb up 0