This is not a normal week. I’m not sure when normal will ever return.
While we move on with covering bicycling and related news, my thoughts remain heavy with the many issues surrounding the hate-fueled attacks on innocent people that happened Friday on a light rail train in northeast Portland. I’m not sure what form the incident and its aftermath will take here on BikePortland, but it will have an impact — both on the stories we cover and how we cover them, as well as the content and tone of the daily discussions we have in the comments. On that note, please be extra mindful of other peoples’ feelings and perspectives as we all struggle to cope with the many layers of outrage and newly exposed (for some) reality of these stressful times.
Below are the most noteworthy stories we came across last week…
Questioning car use: A car was used as a deadly weapon in the recent Times Square driving rampage, a fact that has sparked a much-needed debate about the unfettered access we grant auto users in our cities.
Bike share back in Seattle? Our friends to the north are reportedly close to working out regulations that would grant a host of new next-generation bike share operators access to city streets.
Hand over your car keys: A survey found that many urban auto users often feel stressed and frustrated about their daily drives — insights that should motivate planners and policymakers to work harder to give them a better option.
Savage takes and a transit fix: The Stranger’s Dan Savage laid out some refreshingly candid truths — and one bold idea — to reverse the dual problems of gentrification and displacement.
Bike a mile in my shoes: In New South Wales, people who want to get a learner’s permit for driving a car might have to first take a course in urban cycling.
From parking to parks: Fast Company delves into the positive trend of cities turning auto parking lots into human playing plots.
Take a transit ride into the future: The Willamette Week asked: “What if we spent billions to fix the morning commute with something other than cars?”
Rolling coal no more: In Maryland, lawmakers passed a bill that outlaws this absurd, childish behavior and makes it punishable by a fine of up to $500.
Hi-viz doesn’t help: Neon clothing might be easier to see, but one recent study showed that it doesn’t make people give you more room when the pass. That is, unless your hi-viz jacket has “POLICE” emblazoned on it.
Cargo bike attention: It’s always good when a non-bike media outlet gushes about the utility and fun of riding cargo bikes.
Tour de Toddler: Balance bikes are ubiquitous among Portland families — but did you know there’s a racing scene for these tiny, pedal-less bikes?
Big money bike racing: Bike industry ninja Rick Vosper peels back the veil of what it costs to sponsor a major professional cycling team at the highest levels of the sport.
Don’t hold your breath: The Economist covers the autonomous vehicle industry closely and says, “Forget the hype,” about them taking over streets in the near future.
A Tesla warning: A Stanford engineer tested a Tesla’s autopilot mode and said its performance around bicycle users was “frightening.”