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Help make biking better in Beaverton via this online open house

Posted by on May 31st, 2017 at 4:11 pm

Beaverton’s bike network will be better if you share your feedback.

The City of Beaverton has opened a virtual open house for their first-ever Active Transportation Plan. The plan, which also includes walking-related infrastructure of course, will help city staff implement the right facilities in the right places.

In their first online open house, Beaverton planners learned that — surprise, surprise — people who want to bike more but are too afraid of traffic have a “clear desire” for separated facilities like multi-use paths and protected bike lanes. “Providing bicycle infrastructure that accommodates this group of ‘Interested but Concerned’ bicyclists has the greatest potential of increasing bicycling in Beaverton,” the city said.

In this open house, the city wants your feedback on two main topics: What streets should be prioritized for bicycle access updates, and what type of bicycle infrastructure should be implemented.

Similar to Portland (and other cities), Beaverton will label their bicycle network into various “functional classifications” ranging from “enhanced major bikeways” (fully-protected lanes on major arterials) to “neighborhood bikeways” (akin to Portland’s neighborhood greenways). The classifications will help determine what types of facilities are suitable in each location.

Bicycle network classifications map.

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You also have the opportunity to tell the City of Beaverton what type of facilities you prefer to ride in. Their current proposal includes four facility types: protected bike lanes, buffered bike lanes, regular old bike lanes, and sharrows.

Facility types proposed by City of Beaverton.

Another way to share your feedback is to download the Ride Report app. Data from this app (which anonymously tracks your routes and allows you to rate them as stressful or pleasant) is being used by the City of Beaverton to help decide where to build new bikeways.

After processing community feedback, city staff will spend the next three months creating a project list.

You can sign up for an email list to stay updated on more open house and public outreach events. The plan is scheduled for adoption by Beaverton City Council in October of this year.

It will be a much better plan if you take a few minutes to share your opinions in the online open house.

— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and jonathan@bikeportland.org

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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

18 Comments
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    rick May 31, 2017 at 4:31 pm

    SW Vermont Street will never get punched through for cars. The neighborhood will fight that.

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    Dan A June 1, 2017 at 6:46 am

    This is the strangest survey of this type I’ve ever seen — you can’t comment on specific locations. I hope they get good information out of this, but I don’t really see how.

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      BradWagon June 1, 2017 at 9:23 am

      I added comments about specific locations within the section that asked if this “plan meets the needs…” Said yes with changes and just listed changes.

      Also added feedback to the interactive map where you could select a specific location and say whether the proposed facility was appropriate… but yes, no specific comments on these.

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      El Biciclero June 1, 2017 at 2:35 pm

      I mainly entered my take on facility types, emphasizing width, cross-traffic dangers and need for signalization of crossings for protected (esp. 2-way protected) facilities, width, reasonable/expected speeds for users, sufficient width for hazard avoidance and sweeping, consideration for tuning movements, and width.

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    K'Tesh June 1, 2017 at 8:11 am

    I think I’m a tad out of touch over here in China. Wish I could help.

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    Tim June 1, 2017 at 8:23 am

    Actions speak louder than words and Beaverton’s action says a lot about what they are planning. Some examples:

    Pavement standards and specifications are not applied to bike lanes.
    The City parks their maintenance vehicles in the bike lane, but does not clear debris from the bike lane.
    Bike lane markings are completely worn off from driving in the bike lane.
    Traffic laws intended to protect pedestrians are systematically not enforced.

    The existing bike lanes are not maintained, but they are making grandiose studies for a connected system. The structure of the study, the questions they ask and the comments they allow are not designed to collect real data and opinions from people who actually bike and walk in Beaverton. If you want data on biking and walking go for a ride and a walk. Surveys like this are intended to collect a volume of rants from the anti-bike/pedestrian drivers, to justify their current policies.

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      Dan A June 1, 2017 at 8:36 am

      I can’t say I disagree.

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      BradWagon June 1, 2017 at 9:45 am

      Agree, was laughing to myself at their proposals with the current state of things in the back of my mind..

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    bikeninja June 1, 2017 at 9:28 am

    I Live in Beaverton ,and agree that an Auto Focused Paradigm has ruled the Brains of Beaverton City Leaders for a long time. But Beaverton is also a city on the cusp of change. It has become one of the most racially diverse places in the Metro area and has a growing stream of young people moving from the higher rents of Portland. Unlike more ossified places ,I think that Beaverton can change, and is in fact ready for change. Don’t let Beaverton’s past stop you from putting in your input, things might change here and it would be a shame to let the opportunity to shape it pass us by.

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      Tim June 1, 2017 at 1:12 pm

      I agree, Beaverton is changing and should change. Unfortunately I see this survey as an effort to resist change. It is hard to believe Beaverton plans to build bike infrastructure when they still set their signs in the middle of the bike lane like nobody would ever use such a thing.

      How do we respond for real change? I have offered to take the mayor for a walk and go for a bike ride along with the police – no takers.

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    Seann W June 1, 2017 at 10:36 am

    My key problem areas are at
    1) Nike HQ along Jenkins where it is full-on Mad Max at evening rush, and never have I seen enforcement take place for flagrant violations by car. Late mergers block the bike lane, people pass me on the right from the turn only lane while illegally going straight, dangerous bike crossover added a few years ago that drivers rarely yield for, etc, etc.
    2) Downtown Beaverton on Hall/Watson where the bike lane goes away for a stretch and too many cars often simply don’t know how to co-mingle with cyclists on the shared roadway. Many don’t observe a 3′ distance when making unsafe passes of me, and will pass to make right cross turns in front of me.
    3) I’d like to make use of the very nice dedicated bike paths from Baseline through the nature park to Millikan, but Millikan lacks bike lanes for ~1 mile until it crosses Murray and is quite unsafe to co-mingle with when I have tried (too fast, poor visibility for drivers around curves).
    4) TriMet buses have several times either pulled into the bike lane with me still in it, or done a swoop & squat by pulling into the bike lane directly in front of me and stopping at a distance that requires a hard stop on my part. It has turned my opinion of TriMet pretty sour.
    5) Hall by Greenway is always sketchy down the hill, I have nearly been right-crossed about a dozen times by cars that don’t signal. A dedicated bike signal with a red right turn arrow, or some actual enforcement is needed. The worst are the drivers who realize what they are doing too late who then panic stop while across the bike lane, leaving no safe option except a panic stop on my part.

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    bikeninja June 1, 2017 at 1:45 pm

    My Prediction is that Beaverton will turn in to the new ” Old Portland”. Two economic trends will converge to make this happen. The upcoming “commercial” in the auto retailing industry due to a tidal wave of bad subprime auto loans and an avalanche of lease turn-ins will decimate the auto dealers and associated business’s which make up half of Beavertons commercial space. The other half of Beaverton’s commercial real estate will be eviserated by the ongoing collapse of traditional brick and morter retail,especially those in indoor and outdoor malls. This will leave massive empty commerical space for cheap a 15 train ride away from downtown portland. Artist lofts, music venues and maker spaces will proliferate in what were once auto showrooms and radio shacks. The hoards of cars that once raced the commercial of Beaverton will be replaced by boulevards and cargo bikes as the age of cheap petroleum winds down. Bikes will rule and Old Portland will live again.

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    Vince June 1, 2017 at 2:30 pm

    I did the survey. It is a kludgey interface. You can comment on specific sections of roadway but you have to be right on the road and you have to click through to the ” more” tab.
    As I noted in my comments to BVTN, they have proposals for areas that are not in the ‘Tron. If BVTN is going to fix roads in Washington County,or roads controlled by ODOT more power to them. But as it stands, what they show as connections to routes in Portland are more in the category of wishful thinking than an actionable plan given that they are planning for other jurisdictions and agencies.

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    Tim Davis June 1, 2017 at 4:34 pm

    Thank you so much, Jonathan, for letting us know about this survey! I filled it out right now. This is a HUGE opportunity for us to show how critically important it is for Beaverton to join 21st-century leaders in people-friendly infrastructure, such as Montreal and ANY city in Europe. I didn’t mention other cities in my responses, but I DID mention over and over again that *physically separated* cycling infrastructure (and de-coupling that *awful* Watson/Hall couplet) will a) get thousands of people to actually try biking in Beaverton for the first time ever, b) save $millions in road maintenance, c) greatly improve community health on multiple levels, and d) result in Beaverton actually gaining a real “downtown” for the first time ever: a walkable, enjoyable area in the Broadway/Watson/Hall area where people will actually want to walk and bike along and support businesses for once, rather than simply *driving past* as quickly as possible.

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      bikeninja June 2, 2017 at 9:20 am

      You are right about the Watson/Hall Couplet, but the thing that Beaverton has to do to have any chance of unifying the Downtown and the Beaverton Central/Westgate area is to put in a pedestrian/bike overpass to cross Canyon and TV Highway. These “car canyons” are almost uncrossable even with the long wait “beg buttons”. This would be a huge and expensive piece of infrastructure, but would be a true signal that Beaverton and Washington country are series about modes of travel beyond the automobile.

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        Tim Davis June 2, 2017 at 11:05 am

        I love that suggestion, bikeninja! We need that, as well, for connectivity in Beaverton. Let’s make it happen! 🙂

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    GlowBoy June 6, 2017 at 10:22 pm

    I agree with bikeninja that by far Beaverton’s biggest problem is the lack of connectivity across Canyon/TV and Farmington in the downtown area – and, worse, that the proposed bikeway network doesn’t create a bikeway along Hall/Watson through there.

    Other major streets in the area like Hocken and Cedar Hills don’t continue south of Farmington, leaving only Hall/Watson and Lombard as the only real possibilities. (Murray will become a full bikeway apparently, closing the dangerous gap past Valley Catholic, but is too far away to count).

    Lombard is currently terrible. The bike lanes are discontinuous south of Farmington, and the crossing of Farmington itself is truly awful ever since Lombard was realigned for the WES project.

    Fixing these problems on Lombard would be great, especially for cyclists traveling to the east on 5th/6th. But a bike route on Hall/Watson would be far preferable, because Lombard ends at Allen, south of which Hall is the only north-south route for bikes.

    I made most of these points on the survey.

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      GlowBoy June 6, 2017 at 10:27 pm

      I should also add that under the pedestrian section, I added my plea to eliminate the need to press buttons for permission to cross, at least at busy intersections and times of day, reiterating that it’s time to stop making cars more important than people on foot.

      The inequities of intersection treatments of pedestrians include:
      – Cars get detectors; pedestrians have to push a button, often costing them a cycle – even when they get there two seconds after the adjacent green phase begins, and even if traffic causes the green phase to be extended beyond the length of the pedestrian phase.
      – Even worse, cars get advance detection to extend their chance of making it through before they even reach the intersection, further enhancing their preferential treatment.
      – Left turning vehicles get to make their preferentially-prioritized turn in a single maneuver, whereas pedestrians who need to cross the street they’re walking along have make two crossings, each of which is subject to the potential delays I’ve described above.

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