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The Monday Roundup: Walking and biking while black, cars and climate change, HUD’s dud, and more

Posted by on August 28th, 2017 at 9:30 am

This week’s Monday Roundup is sponsored by Urban Tribe, the affordable family cargo bike.

Welcome to the week! (Note: I’m out of the office today doing this. Please be patient if any issues or news arises. I’ll be back at my desk Monday evening.)

Here are the most noteworthy stories we came across last week…

Injustice in Louisiana: A jaw-dropping combination of cultural dysfunction on display as three black men are cited for not wearing reflective clothing and blocking a public road — after they were hit and injured by a motor vehicle user on a road with no sidewalks. I don’t even know where to begin. Thankfully Streetsblog took a stab at explaining it.

Portland’s problem with race: An ex-Portlander penned a must-read about why he — and other people of color — are leaving our fair city. One person quoted in the piece said she’s afraid to bike at night. “No way. I’m Black. Even Black people are shocked to see Black people ride their bikes here.” (Note: I’m working on a follow-up to my post about white supremacy. Thank you for all your amazing comments!)

Driving is the problem: Love this piece from Vox that lays out an inconvenient truth for many enviros and progressives who are afraid to aggressively discourage driving (or who don’t see that it’s imperative). Say it with me (and replace “California” with your state): “California has a climate problem, and its name is cars.”

Human chain protected lane: New York City is the latest place this new activism tool was put to use. Where should we do this in Portland? North Interstate Avenue climb perhaps?

De Blasio blasé about pricing: Congestion pricing is the future. Someone needs to explain how it works to NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio.

L.A. vision zero progress: Los Angeles is focusing on speed reduction in their fight to eliminate traffic deaths. Signal timing, more enforcement, and public education are among their strategies.

Cost of driving: Driving has many costs, both to society-at-large and to people’s pocketbooks. A new AAA study finds that just owning a car costs an average of over $8,400 per year.

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Difficult choice: Seattle advocates are struggling with a difficult question for the design of Ranier Avenue: A bus-only lane or a protected bike lane?

A dud at HUD: If America’s cities are ever to achieve their bicycling potential, we must get urban housing right. Unfortunately many cities, like Portland, are struggling with lack of supply and associated lack of affordable options. That’s why the complete lack of leadership at the federal Housing and Urban Development agency is so disturbing.

Not the same roads: That “same roads, same rights” mantra is such garbage. As this tourist in Norway discovered after following Google Maps into a long underwater tunnel and having to be rescued; many roads are not viable for bicycling.

Latest viral transit absurdity: I want to read one of these silly stories someday that says, “These two-wheeled, chain-driven machines are the (past and) future of transportation.”

Bicycle deaths rising: The Governor’s Highway Safety Association released a report with bad news: Bicycle deaths are up more than any other user category. Since 2011 the U.S. has averaged an increase of 55 bicycling deaths per year.

The bike you can ride up buildings: The “Vcycle” fills that pesky gap in vertical transportation between stairs and elevators, at least that’s what its graduate student inventor says. In other words, it pedals straight up the side of buildings.

So many bikes: Utrecht has completed a new, $47 million bike parking facility at their central train station that’s the largest in the world with room for 6,000 bikes. When it’s fully built out the station will have a total of 22,000 bike parking spaces.

Thanks to everyone who submitted links this week.

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

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64 Comments
  • Avatar
    bikeninja August 28, 2017 at 9:57 am

    “Driving is the problem”, Whatever question you ask, that pretty much sums up the answer. climate change, road deaths, congestion, pollution, sedentary Illness, financial stress on working class families. Maybe we will get the clue someday.

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      colton August 28, 2017 at 10:33 am

      Well, that and overpopulation. Get everyone to cut their usage of everything in half and in 45-50 years you will be right back where we are today.

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        Chris M August 28, 2017 at 11:34 am

        The U.S. population is only projected to grow by about 30% between now and 2100 (and basically that is all immigration, non-immigrant citizens are reproducing below replacement rates). World population is projected to go from 7.5 bn to about 11 bn by 2100. So slightly over 50% growth over 75 years. So while I take your point that increasing the number of humans increases the impact regardless of efficiency, the numbers are a long ways from doubling every 50 years.

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          9watts August 28, 2017 at 8:28 pm

          Oregon’s population has doubled in my lifetime, and I’m not 50.

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            B. Carfree August 28, 2017 at 9:48 pm

            And West Virginia’s has dropped by 15% since 1950. Your point was?

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              9watts August 29, 2017 at 8:48 am

              My point was that many people are in denial about or don’t understand how exponential growth works; they see a number like 1.8% per year and figure it’s a small number. Well, it isn’t. It corresponds to a doubling time of 40 years.

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          Steve Scarich August 29, 2017 at 9:06 am

          Your numbers are way off; at current growth rate, U.S. Population will grow 30% by 2060 to 420 million., by 2100 it will double. And, if immigration rates go up again, we could be looking at a billion by 2100.

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      Mr. Know It August 28, 2017 at 11:44 am

      Depending on what is a more pressing problem, climate change or road deaths, etc, then the answer is not necessarily driving. Perhaps the answer is that we need a better source of energy for cars. Fusion, could be one answer. Fission might be one also – I think that’s what Bill Gates is pushing – or at least he used to be – I haven’t checked lately. Solar might do it if we can get storage of energy to a viable point, but that’s probably decades away. AND better cars, with crash avoidance technology could help the road deaths problem. So, driving isn’t necessarily bad – just need to improve the system. That’s what scientists and engineers and entrepreneurial ideas driven by the profit motive are for. If anyone in the world can solve these problems, it is Americans. Let’s all pitch in and do our part – write Trump a supportive letter today, urging him to unleash a team of scientists/engineers perhaps in partnership with private enterprise to solve these problems. OR, you can write nasty posts about what an idiot he is, how he’s a racist, a misogynist, a thisaphobe, a thataphobe, how he colluded with the Russians to steal the election, etc – none of which are true. Which would be better for America and for the world?

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        9watts August 28, 2017 at 8:28 pm

        right.

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        Dan A August 28, 2017 at 9:35 pm

        He’s a scienceaphobe.

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        philip porter August 29, 2017 at 7:45 am

        The best we can hope for with T**** is that he’ll leave. And we simply need less cars on the streets, no matter what their manner of propulsion.

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        Middle of the Road Guy August 29, 2017 at 9:07 am

        Actually, one could write both letters.

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    Chris I August 28, 2017 at 10:58 am

    I’d like to see the stats for cyclist deaths per VMT over time. Pure numbers are not very useful.

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      paikiala August 29, 2017 at 9:19 am

      Cyclists deaths per number of car miles driven? To determine what, exactly?

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        Chris I August 29, 2017 at 3:08 pm

        You should know what VMT stands for. Are bicycles not vehicles?

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          paikiala August 29, 2017 at 3:41 pm

          Not for the purpose of VMT. Fatals per 100k population is mode neutral.

          Per ODOT website:
          “Vehicle Miles of Travel, or VMT is the sum of distances traveled by all motor vehicles in a specified system of highways for a given period of time. The VMT for each road section is calculated by multiplying the average daily traffic, or ADT by the length of the road section and the length of the time period. Those section VMTs are summed to calculate the VMT for a road or road system”

          http://www.oregon.gov/ODOT/Data/Pages/Traffic-Counting.aspx#VMT

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            Chris I August 30, 2017 at 10:53 am

            So, basically, we have no data on the miles that cyclists travel per year in the state? Seems like an important metric to have…

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    Dave August 28, 2017 at 10:59 am

    The speed reduction/LA traffic death story is a poignant illustration of our need to propagandize to young men in a way that de-links driving with masculinity. Someone needs to talk to them in the language that they use with each other and call motor-dependency something done by “***word deleted by moderator***” and “***word deleted by moderator***.” If we aren’t willing to use language that offends us, we won’t get through to the tribe that needs to hear the ideas.

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    • Hello, Kitty
      Hello, Kitty August 29, 2017 at 9:32 am

      Looks like we won’t be getting through to them here.

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    wsbob August 28, 2017 at 11:00 am

    Basically no details are offered by the streetsblog writer about Ville Platte, Louisiana, why it has a vulnerable road user at night reflective clothing use ordinance ( if that’s what the law there is.), or in terms of specific circumstances of the collision involving the three guys there on foot…such as what the street lighting at the collision site was, estimated mph speed of person driving, etc. There’s more info about the collision in the 21 comments to the story at the time I browsed over it. In the story, there are links to other media in the area that covered the story and have more details.

    http://www.katc.com/story/36203816/three-charged-in-ville-platte-after-being-hit-by-truck?utm_content=buffer08dc1&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer

    https://kadn.com/single-vehicle-crash-stirs-controversy-after-pedestrians-fined-but-driver-isnt/

    The kadn story has this:

    “…The police report states they were 4 feet from the shoulder when the driver couldn’t see them.

    “I’ll take the reflective gear charge but that other charge, we wasn’t doing that. we wasn’t on the street. We were on the side of the road.” …”

    Story also quotes one of the guys hit, as suspecting the person driving wasn’t going to stop. Not sure exactly what to make of this story with the limited details available. Sounds like Ville Platte doesn’t have good infrastructure for walking, but that’s hardly extraordinary in many cities, towns and the countryside across the U.S.

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    Mr. Know It All August 28, 2017 at 11:01 am

    From the article about the 3 black guys: “The ordinance against walking at night without reflective clothing has no safety purpose and only serves as an invitation for police harassment and victim-blaming.”

    Clearly, the ordinance has an important purpose – to save lives. I’ll bet that street is darker than the inside of a cow at night. Fact is, they broke the local ordinance requiring safety gear – the police are just doing their job enforcing the law. Maybe the town can use the fines to put up a street light – or pay some folks living on the street to keep outside bright lights on at night.

    On the cost of owning a car. Yeah, $8,400/year is probably about right if, like many, you buy a new car every few years and are constantly making payments on a depreciating asset. My used car, that’s been paid off for 14 years, costs me about 800 or 1000 for insurance, 1000 for repairs/maintenance, 500 for gas (not driving much now), 55 for registration/smog, 25 for car washing, etc. That’s about 2600 – say 3,000. If you drive more, it’ll cost more, but no where near $8,400 – although like I said, if you constantly buy new cars, then 8400 is probably reasonable.

    I don’t ride my bike at night if I can avoid it and I’m not black. Riding a bike at night is risky.

    On HUD, don’t look to bureaucrats 2,500 miles away to help you on housing – look to your local developers, and local politicians willing to remove obstacles to building more housing.

    Cyclist deaths probably rising because of more people riding bikes.

    WOW! Expensive bike parking. From that article: “Last year, Amsterdam officials removed 24,000 neglected bikes and seized around 40,000 of them for parking violations in a drive to free up space for active bike riders.” Where is the outrage! 🙂

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    Mr. Know It August 28, 2017 at 11:29 am

    Interesting article on the California climate problem named Cars. How did you like the huge Nissan ad at the top of the page? 🙂

    From the article: “Whether it is possible to begin decarbonizing a vibrant, growing economy without damaging its health is no longer an open question. California is doing it. When Republicans say that national climate policy would destroy the economy and US competitiveness, they owe us an explanation. Why? That’s not what happened in California.”

    Very little truth in that. Yes, they’ve “begun” to decarbonize their electric grid, but as the article states, have made little progress on transportation. A graph in the article says 0.3% of cars in the state are EVs, plus a similar number of plug-in hybrids. Thus, the statement they attribute to Rs is correct. Transportation is a harder problem than the electric grid, and they can’t even decarbonize the electric grid. On a windless night, with no FF backup, 10s of thousands would die in hospitals every night due to lack of electricity. Millions would lose night jobs due to no electricity. Wind and solar are nice, and have a place, but the storage problem is insurmountable at this point; hopefully technology and engineering will solve that problem; or perhaps fission or fusion will be the answer. Don’t despair – just because it is hard does not mean it is impossible – ‘Muricans like doing the impossible and the hard – we’ve literally saved the rest of the world more than once. Kennedy sent us to the moon, Reagan tore down the wall, Trump may push us toward a solution on energy; but constant attacks on him will not help him get that done so think before you attack him.

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      CaptainKarma August 28, 2017 at 1:07 pm

      Reagan did NOT “tear down this wall”.

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      Al Dimond August 28, 2017 at 6:21 pm

      Literally nobody pushing for “national climate policy” suggests putting power availability at risk and killing thousands of people. Everyone serious has heard of windless nights. The point of setting policy is that we plan to get there: collectively set a goal that drives public investment and private investment through the expectation of future regulation.

      Considering the consequences of blowing off climate change, what carbon policy plans for is a future that is actually a future. It’s necessary work that Republicans have been attacking for years, and Trump worse than most of them even. About the only good thing you can say about Trump on energy and climate is that he’s thrown the national Republican establishment into disarray, preventing efficient dismantling of planning and environmental regulations, at a time when they’d be otherwise too powerful to stop.

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    wsbob August 28, 2017 at 11:55 am

    Recommended in today’s Roundup as a ‘must read’, I read the Merc story about a guy’s thoughts on Portland and racism. The writer writes well. Other than that, there wasn’t much in his story using bits of conversations gained from informal talks on the subject of racism in the city, with people he casually met while living in the city. His story says he had a related podcast for awhile.

    I know that Portland, cities nearby such as Beaverton where I live, indisputably have had over their histories, issues with racism and other kinds of discrimination. As a so called ‘white person’, I’ve not been subject personally to racism based on skin color, ethnic identity, religious affiliation, gender, etc, etc. Though I’ve known, and continue to know, and am surrounded by and associate with people on a regular basis, that aren’t so called ‘white persons’. We’ve all seemed to have gotten on well enough..

    The writer of the Merc story, refers to the type of racism he was uncomfortable with while living in Portland, was for example, people he casually met, asking him about his ethnic origin since his name, I think, would naturally would leave people to wonder. He mentions also, being unhappy about certain names given food and cocktails at a certain restaurant in Portland offering ethnic cuisine.

    What I was really looking forward to learning something about from his story, which I think I was tipped off in a casual mention on this weblog last week, that there might be something, was, if it’s true, why, based on specific examples rather than just a feeling…black people don’t feel safe riding bikes. Virtually nothing about that in his story despite a quote from a described black person he talked with.

    “…“I don’t ride my bike at night,” she said. “No way. I’m Black. Even Black people are shocked to see Black people ride their bikes here.” …” from conversation with Zahir Janmohamed, writing for the Merc, with person having asked for anonymity

    …ok…please tell us why, anonymous person, why as a black person, you don’t want to ride a bike.

    Zahir doesn’t relate being attacked physically, verbally, being prevented from patronizing any business of his choice. How bad is racism in the Portland area? In some parts of town, incidents have happened. Maybe he should have wrote about them and the forces that figured into their happening.

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      soren August 28, 2017 at 8:51 pm

      “As a so called ‘white person’, I’ve not been subject personally to racism based on skin color”

      https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/kwzjvz/dear-white-people-please-stop-pretending-reverse-racism-is-real

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      • Hello, Kitty
        Hello, Kitty August 28, 2017 at 9:07 pm

        “It’s literally impossible to be racist to a white person.” Literally.

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          Pete August 28, 2017 at 10:50 pm

          It’s literally impossible to be reverse-racist.

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          9watts August 28, 2017 at 11:05 pm

          did you read any further?

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          • Hello, Kitty
            Hello, Kitty August 29, 2017 at 12:26 am

            I did. Unfortunately, I’ve learned that there is a Correct Opinion about this matter, and I don’t fully embrace it. I’ll just go back to my line that I believe everyone should be treated as an individual and with courtesy and respect. And I’m not “white people”.

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        JeffS August 29, 2017 at 1:44 am

        Someone buy that woman a dictionary.

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        wsbob August 29, 2017 at 11:20 am

        soren…what I’m saying, is that not being black, or of some other ethnic origin, gender identity, etc that is subject to discrimination, I’ve not personally been in a position to experience what those who are, have experienced.

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          Dan A August 29, 2017 at 2:08 pm

          This is a good comment, short and to the point, and yet full of profound wisdom. Thumbs up sir.

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          soren August 31, 2017 at 9:21 am

          thanks for the clarification.

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    BobA August 28, 2017 at 11:58 am

    This guy is handling this in the best manner possible, but it would be better if he didn’t have to…

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q3zn5dQiOEw

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      Chris I August 28, 2017 at 12:36 pm

      It’s crazy that they cram bikes onto that narrow walkway. They really should devote one of the westbound lanes on that bridge for a 2-way bikeway, and let the pedestrians have the elevated walkway.

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    Champs August 28, 2017 at 12:07 pm

    People who want to feel isolated by race are welcome to join me back in time when my family moved to a small town in Minnesota. My father was the only black person most people had ever seen in person, much less living in their neighborhood or reading from the bible at their church. My sister, a high school senior, surprised everyone by not being an exchange student from Africa. I have lived in many places from the Midwest to the East, to Portland, but on the balance I’ll take this city’s New American culture over stifling European obsessions elsewhere.

    I bike at night. My family left Ohio. But I’m sure the grass is greener in Columbus.

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      dan August 28, 2017 at 1:30 pm

      Yah, that Mercury article made me roll my eyes. As a non-white native Portlander, well, toughen up, buttercup. We have our problems here, but your sensibilities are a little too delicate.

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        philip porter August 29, 2017 at 7:51 am

        I reckon he’s comparing pdx to other , significantly larger cities, such as new york or sf or seattle or chicago, where there are so many people and so much diversity literally no one cares about your “race”. There’s a significant difference, you can tell just by visiting these places. The stories he told really annoyed me – I’m white and from the Bay so I can’t totally relate, but it’s gotta suck to have people basically harass you about your enthnicity when you’re used to no one really giving a damn.

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          wsbob August 29, 2017 at 11:16 am

          “…but it’s gotta suck to have people basically harass you about your enthnicity…” phil porter

          Do you seriously think from reading his story, that in the examples he cited, Zahir Janmohamed felt harassed? For crying out loud, he reflects and expresses dismay, recounting having being asked, apparently by kids years ago, whether his prayer rug was a magic carpet. What fair minded person takes offense at something like that? The way Zahir relates the story the kids weren’t teasing him. Sounds like they were just being playful, joking, because I suppose they were comfortable being around him.

          Still, Zahir is miffed about being asked such a question. Hey…y’know, I bet some people, muslims included, in fact, might take such a question as a compliment. What are prayer rugs and prayers in general, if not to some extent, a means to help people go to better places in this world, to help them realize dreams and aspirations that solely worldly ties resist their attaining?

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    Jason H August 28, 2017 at 1:23 pm

    I get the point that the Oslofjord tunnel story is about parity in road access (closer to home the Vista Ridge Tunnel on 26 is a more familiar example), but blaming it on Google Maps is a red herring. The man must have put in his route as a car user (among a string of ridiculous choices), because I just bike routed a spot close to each side of the tunnel and GM gave me two 100km routes either through Oslo or on a ferry! not exactly convenient, but not through the tunnel either.

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      philip porter August 29, 2017 at 8:05 am

      You know, I see people blindly following google maps all the time. They’ll have their phone docked on their bike somewhere or headphones in and they’ll follow the voice, completely trusting Google to tell them where to go. Just like many car drivers.

      Is it just me, or is this incredibly stupid behavior, allowing an AI to literally direct you everywhere you go

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    Mr. Know It All August 28, 2017 at 1:36 pm

    Describe what you mean by “New American culture” and by “stifling European obsessions”.

    I avoid biking at night – I don’t feel like it is safe no matter what color you are.

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      Dan A August 29, 2017 at 7:43 am

      Biking at 5am is considerably safer than biking at 7am.

      That said, I feel unsafe being out on the roads after happy hour in the evenings, whether I’m in a car or on a bike. When there is room to speed and drive like a complete maniac, there are a lot of drivers willing to do so.

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        Chris I August 29, 2017 at 8:36 am

        The early morning is the safest time to be on the road in an urban area.

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  • Hello, Kitty
    Hello, Kitty August 28, 2017 at 3:12 pm

    I’m going to bet I’m the only one here who’s ridden one of those vertical bikes (it’s not really a new idea). They’re pretty fun as a novelty, but it sure takes a lot of energy to go up even 20 ft.

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      dan August 28, 2017 at 4:29 pm

      Yeah, the inventor’s confidence that they will be adopted in China suggests a lack of investigation into contemporary building trends (very tall buildings). Also, bikes are somewhat back in vogue in China, but you are just not going to get many Chinese people who want to bike up a 20 floor building on a regular basis (or really, people of any nationality).

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        Mr. Know It All August 28, 2017 at 9:42 pm

        Sounds like a good burglary tool.

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      Dan A August 29, 2017 at 7:49 am

      We have a lot of floors in my building being leased by Oregon DEQ. The employees are constantly going up and down in the elevators between their various offices. I would think it might be a nice break from work to pedal up or down a floor or two instead of sitting in the elevator. I know I would prefer it.

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    Dave August 28, 2017 at 3:54 pm

    I think this quote from the Merc article provides some valuable context to the changing housing situation on Portland-
    “When I asked why she decided to plant roots here, she cited the still relatively affordable housing prices compared to California”

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    B. Carfree August 28, 2017 at 8:12 pm

    From the governors’ report: “Also noteworthy is that the bicycle was born out of
    the need to provide an alternative to the primary form of transportation
    of the day – the horse. That fact is probably lost on the generations who
    have grown up with the automobile and learned to ride a bicycle purely
    for recreational purposes.”

    Just shaking my head. When were the authors born and do they ever get out? Pretty much every Boomer, a rather large segment of the America population even today, started riding bikes to get from point A to point B. Sure, bikes are fun to ride and always have been, but recreation as the primary reason for riding is kind of new, at least in the circles I have moved in for my many decades of cycling.

    I also wish those who comment on cycling fatalities at night versus daytime would take the time to sort out the various portions of the night and see if their statement still stands. It’s long been my experience that the drunk hours, roughly 7:00 PM to 2:30 PM, are often horrifically dangerous (whether on a bike or in a car), but after the drunks land and prior to sunrise (or the march of the commuters, whichever comes first) is very safe on the roads.

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      Dan A August 29, 2017 at 7:52 am

      It’s long been my experience that the drunk hours, roughly 7:00 PM to 2:30 PM, are often horrifically dangerous (whether on a bike or in a car), but after the drunks land and prior to sunrise (or the march of the commuters, whichever comes first) is very safe on the roads.

      Yes! It’s not the lack of light that’s dangerous, it’s…..something else….

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    B. Carfree August 28, 2017 at 8:26 pm

    A family member had an odd encounter with race last night. After a white guy unsuccessfully attempted to bike-jack him (Eugene’s bike paths are really problematic), he proceeded to meet up with a friend. While sitting in a publicly-owned space, a masked mugger came up and, after removing his mask so he could be understood (no one ever said thugs were intelligent or even capable), demanded their money. My family member chose to pull out his twenty pound bike lock and chain and encourage the thug to be on his way.

    When the police finally decided to respond (his companion was put on hold for twenty minutes during the encounter), they asked if he wanted to press charges. This being Eugene and the thug being one of the twenty-odd black males in town, they decided that there was no way their assailant would get a fair shake and declined to press charges.

    He just felt that being black in Oregon was so messed up that sometimes one has to take a no-harm, no-foul approach. That’s probably easier to do with the privilege of being a 6’2″ 220# black belt with a heavy chain than it would be for a smaller person.

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      malegaze August 28, 2017 at 9:27 pm

      No criminal should get a pity pass. Jeeezus.

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        B. Carfree August 28, 2017 at 9:57 pm

        Our system of “justice” gives these out all the time, but mostly to white folks. I see individuals declining to press charges for small crimes as something akin to jury nullification; it’s just someone taking a less rigid view of how justice is best served.

        Of course I change my opinion when we start talking about tribal-based traffic law enforcement, where I firmly believe that zero-tolerance is the only proper way to do it. The fact that traffic citations don’t take away liberty nor do they follow someone for life like a criminal conviction do are part of my thinking, but mostly I just selfishly want the roads to be safe for cycling and walking, my primary means of transportation.

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          malegaze August 29, 2017 at 6:09 pm

          Crime stats. You need to read them. In addition, my statement applies to all criminals regardless of skin tone.

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        philip porter August 29, 2017 at 7:58 am

        You should consider the consequences though. Getting a warning from the cops, having the cops have the criminal’s name and description, should give the criminal a good scare and perhaps give them an opportunity to re think their path in life. Plus if the criminal ever sees the victim on the streets again they’ll recall that this was someone who didn’t have them put away and perhaps not feel the need for vengeance.

        However, if charges are pressed and the criminal is brought to jail, you’re completely changing their life. You’re putting them deeply into debt, possibly causing their family to suffer, causing them to suffer in jail, then having them released into the outside world with horrible financial problems, possible psychological trauma, and maybe even a vendetta against you.

        Sometimes I think, given the longer reaching consequences, it’s best to give some criminals a “pity pass”

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        • Hello, Kitty
          Hello, Kitty August 29, 2017 at 9:21 am

          I definitely tend to err on the side of forgiveness, but premeditated violent crime directed at individuals generally crosses a line for me.

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        bikeninja August 29, 2017 at 11:56 am

        I agree, but we need to be sure we are also applying this to the entire range of ” too big to fail” white collar criminals in our society. Once the rule of law is perceived as something that only applies to the little guy then society quickly unravels. Steal a sandwich, go to jail. Set up 100 of thousands of fake bank accounts and bilk people out of millions in fees and you get a slap on the wrist.

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      wsbob August 29, 2017 at 11:02 am

      “…This being Eugene and the thug being one of the twenty-odd black males in town, they decided that there was no way their assailant would get a fair shake and declined to press charges. …” b carfree

      Oh well, that’s just great. Your big tough family member lets someone you refer to as a mugger and a thug, get off being held responsible for demanding money he wasn’t entitled to. So do you think because he got a break, the mugger thug is going to see the error of his ways, straighten up and be an honorable citizen from now on? Or next time he needs some money fast, will he just pick a more vulnerable person to target, someone that won’t be able to resist of fight back?

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    Ted Powers August 29, 2017 at 11:23 am

    Wait a minute. Bike deaths are up? If getting more and more people on bikes is the goal then yes, more bike deaths are likely to follow.

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      Dan A August 29, 2017 at 2:09 pm

      Yay?

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