Support BikePortland

It’s now a Portland city code violation to deny “drive-thru” service to bicycle users

Posted by on May 29th, 2018 at 3:57 pm

The drive-thru at Burgerville on NE 122nd Ave.
(Photos: Jonathan Maus)

Something quietly profound happened last Thursday May 24th: The zoning maps and zoning code of Portland’s 2035 Comprehensive Plan went into effect.

Among the many updates and additions is a new policy on “drive-thrus”. Specifically, it is now against city code to deny service at outdoor windows to people using bikes, feet, and mobility devices.

The new code is found in chapter 224 of the new plan. In 33.224.070 Multi-Modal Access the code states, “When a drive-through facility is open and other pedestrian-oriented customer entrances to the business are unavailable or locked, the drive-through facility must serve customers using modes other than a vehicle such as pedestrians and bicyclists.” This applies to not only food establishments but banks, gas stations, pharmacies, and any retail business that has an outdoor service window. Portland has about 308 “drive-thrus” citywide.

Of course businesses that “get it” won’t limit bicycle users to limited access hours and will allow non-drivers to use outdoor service windows at any time.

Advertisement

This code was inserted into the Comp Plan as an amendment in 2016 by Portland Planning and Sustainability Commissioner Chris Smith. As we reported in September of that year, Smith felt like enshrining the right to service even if you’re not using an automobile was an issue of basic fairness. “Ideally you can’t refuse service based on mode,” Smith told us. “In a city that aims to be less than 30 percent single-occupancy vehicle mode share, that’s just not cool.”

You’ll note that the new code only applies when main doors and entrances are closed. Smith says this was done for three main reasons: to make the change more politically palatable; to recognize that some drive-thrus are inherently unsafe for people outside of cars; and to not create undue insurance/liability burdens on business owners. “The driving public policy motivation for me was access to the service/business, which can be achieved either by providing access to the drive-thru or by leaving the front door open,” Smith shared.

The origin of this code update dates back to 2009 when Portland writer and self-described “family biking evangelist” Sarah Gilbert was denied service at the window of the Burgerville restaurant at SE Powell and 25th. Her story went viral and Burgerville was ultimately persuaded to change their policy.

Smith says if you’re refused service while on your bike and if access to the business is otherwise unavailable, you can file a zoning code complaint online or by calling (503) 823-CODE.

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

Never miss a story. Sign-up for the daily BP Headlines email.

BikePortland needs your support.

Greenfield Health
Please support BikePortland.

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

89 Comments
  • KYouell May 29, 2018 at 4:11 pm

    And all because a mama on a cargo bike wanted to roll through Burgerville with her 3 boys on the back. Thanks, Sarah Gilbert, for getting this ball rolling!

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • dwk May 29, 2018 at 7:03 pm

      Because I am so excited to get that big Mac…

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Middle of the Road Guy May 30, 2018 at 11:10 am

        Eh, we all have our vices. I’ve not eaten there since 1990, though.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Toadslick May 29, 2018 at 4:25 pm

    When a drive-through facility is open and other pedestrian-oriented customer entrances to the business are unavailable or locked

    Welp, that killed my excitement pretty quickly. Not that I’m eager to sit in a line of exhaust-spewing SUVs, but limiting it to drive-thru-only hours undercuts much of the fairness and utility.

    One of the benefits of a drive-thru being open to bike users is not having to take the time to lock up your bike – if there is bike parking at all – and not having to remove your lights and panniers to prevent them from being stolen. I see loaded bikes and cargo bikes much more frequently during daylight hours, and hardly ever during the sort of hours when fast-food joints are drive-thru-only.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) May 29, 2018 at 5:47 pm

      Hi Toadslick,

      maus.jonathan@gmail.com
      71.56.138.92
      Just added this to the story.

      You’ll note that the new code only applies when main doors and entrances are closed. Smith says this was done for three main reasons: to make the change more politically palatable; to recognize that some drive-thrus are inherently unsafe for people outside of cars; and to not create undue insurance/liability burdens on business owners. “The driving public policy motivation for me was access to the service/business, which can be achieved either by providing access to the drive-thru or by leaving the front door open,” Smith shared.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • John Lascurettes May 29, 2018 at 7:32 pm

        It’d be nice if there was a staple rack provision in there too. That is, if the business provides car parking but no bike parking, then bicycle riders should be allowed to use the drive through all hours.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Pete June 7, 2018 at 5:45 pm

        “to recognize that some drive-thrus are inherently unsafe for people outside of cars”

        I’m still looking for proof of that. I’ve been biking through drive-thrus for decades, going back to when I was a kid without a license and Burger King drive-thru stayed open past 10 PM. I’ve never seen a situation where a driver’s attention was focused elsewhere besides the things keeping them from getting to the order box, or the menu itself. I daresay that nowhere else on the roadways are drivers so uniformly attentive!

        The “insurance prevents it” excuse is something I’ve heard once in a while – for the most part people don’t make it a big deal. The only real problems I’ve faced are not being able to trip magnetic car sensors with carbon fiber.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Scott Mizée May 29, 2018 at 5:48 pm

      I had the same question. This seems to be a major “loophole” Are we missing something? I’m not looking for a reason to complain, but it appears that the drive-through that refused me service in 2007 could still do so if they have “pedestrian-oriented customer entrances that are available and unlocked.”

      I’m also curious why the code does not specify a motor vehicle, rather than just any vehicle…
      ” drive-through facility must serve customers using modes other than a vehicle such as pedestrians and bicyclists.”

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • bjorn May 29, 2018 at 7:26 pm

        I once tried to buy food in a portland drive thru, they let me order and wait in line but when I got to the window they threw my already prepared food in the trash can and refused to serve me. It was the only place open because it was late, and the inside was not open. I think most places will probably just allow bikes in the drive thru all the time now the biggest issue was businesses who had significant hours where they were only willing to conduct commerce with people who arrived by car, that is now a thing of the past and I think that is more important than 24/7 access to the drive thru lane.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

    • q May 29, 2018 at 5:54 pm

      Exactly. I guess prohibiting bikes in the drive-thru would be OK during regular hours if the restaurant is fine with people bringing their bikes with them to the indoors line. Requiring people who are walking to come inside make sense, but requiring people with one type of vehicle (bikes) to park and walk in, while those with another type of vehicle (cars) aren’t required to park and come in is harder to defend–especially when, as you said, it can be more trouble to park a bike than a car.

      On the positive side, a restaurant has the option of allowing bikes in the drive-thru all day long (when indoor line is open) giving them the opportunity to take business away from those that don’t, or only do it because they’re forced to.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Spiffy May 29, 2018 at 6:57 pm

      I too lost all my excitement when I got to that part…

      Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Chris Smith May 29, 2018 at 4:37 pm

    Happy to be able to turn Sarah’s experience into an opportunity for change!

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • maxD May 29, 2018 at 4:57 pm

    I have walked and bike through Burgerville and US Bank without any problems. The one and only time I attempted to go to Taco Bell , it was the location on Interstate/Going, I was on a bike and I was denied.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Todd Boulanger May 29, 2018 at 4:58 pm

    This is great news – thanks Chris and Sarah!

    1) Burgerville’s successful adoption of this has helped (FYI Burgerville is Vancouver based corp.)

    2) The public policy of the origins of this issue date to my 2006 Pedal Palooza ride called: “Serve Me or Arrest Me – Drive Thru Equity)…& thanks Shift2Bikes and those who rode on the ride!

    SERVE ME OR ARREST ME – DRIVE THRU EQUITY
    N Portland Blvd MAX Stn – 11:59pm
    A ride and food cruise to highlight the transportation inequity of national fast food restuarants not serving bicyclists (pedestrians too) in drive thru lanes at night. Does one have to rent a car to get a $1 burger? Think of this as a lunch counter sit-in for bicyclists. If these lanes are truely ‘not safe’ for bicyclists (as Ronald and Jack sez) then how come local jurisdictions allow them to be designed so? Restaurant suggestions accepted – for those that serve and do not serve bicyclists.
    21+ Only.
    https://bikeportland.org/2006/06/23/pedalpalooza-daily-623-1554

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Scott Mizée May 29, 2018 at 5:51 pm

      Incidentally, I was riding your bakfiets, Todd, when I was refused service in St Johns. Having it loaded with kids, we were trying to make a quick “ride-through” rather than unload everything and go inside.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • todd boulanger May 30, 2018 at 12:43 pm

        Ha…you never told me THAT story. 🙂 (I miss that bak….it is still riding around the couv with another family.)

        Recommended Thumb up 0

    • todd boulanger May 30, 2018 at 1:14 pm

      To clarify…the protest rides I organized were targeting the time periods when drive-thru owners/ operators locked their pedestrian entrances at night but then still served drivers in the drive-thru lanes. (At the time I last researched the topic…I was not aware of any national study in the urban planning/ traffic engineering journals that documented and supported this operational policy for “traffic safety” etc. Definitely at big ADA ‘no no’ then and now IMTO.)

      In a quick scan of ORLA (Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Assoc.) and Washington State Hospitality Assoc. there were no posts about bicycle or pedestrian safety issues in a drive-thru…only general ADA access issues were raised.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Kyle Banerjee May 29, 2018 at 5:13 pm

    The new code is welcome and the fact that cyclists were refused service at some establishments was dumb.

    But how often do people really want to bike in a drive thru, starting with why support a business that’s optimized to encourage driving? I won’t even do that, and from what I can tell I’m considerably more sympathetic to cars here than most. I can’t remember the last time I even had the desire to use a drive thru, let alone actually used one.

    Hauling food intended for immediate consumption on a bike is both awkward and going to make it taste worse. Locking while removing panniers, lights, etc is the same as with any destination which takes seconds which are typically recovered in the often shorter indoor waiting times.

    Aside the fact that huffing exhaust while listening to nonstop engine noise isn’t fun, a lot of customers in drive thrus are drunk or stoned — particularly late at night. I’d rather be on the roads where I have a chance of figuring out which ones they are and still have the ability to dodge rather than be standing there with little ability to move.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Al May 29, 2018 at 6:09 pm

      Most drive thrus where I was denied service were completely devoid of cars. I was told that it is a matter of policy. Often, a manager quickly appeared to calm the confused employee and assure them that they were in fact faithfully carrying out corporate policy and that I should come inside.

      This typically happens to me when I want a drink or ice cream and don’t have a lock for my bike. I can then either awkwardly drag my ride inside, which also can produce negative feedback or go through the drive thru.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

    • rick May 29, 2018 at 6:55 pm

      I’d love a ban on new drive-thrus.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Bald One May 30, 2018 at 11:26 am

        This would be key. Especially on one-way streets where driver is less likely to be checking both directions for pedestrians as they exit the business. I think of greater importance to folks not in cars is the dangerous exits from these locations, and how the drivers coming out frequently cross sidewalks without looking for peds, or have visual obstructions, not to mention busy with their food in their lap. I have big problems with how city lets these business block traffic with the in/out, create dangerous ped crossings (on sidewalks), and promote car engine idling. And the new, more dense, Portland has these new drive-thrus coming into dense areas and shoe-horning them in between big buildings with poor site lines and no capacity for stacked up cars. I am specifically thinking of dutch bros, starbucks, blackrock, etc. The burger places tend to have existing parking lots to feed into their drivethroughs, but the coffee places are just little shacks using the public rights of way to idle their customer cars and create issues for people walking on the sidewalks.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Spiffy May 29, 2018 at 7:02 pm

      I only use drive-thrus in Vancouver, because I’m visiting a friend in the suburbs… when you want a burrito and there’s no place with a bike rack to lock up to then what do you do? it’s a long way to any decent small (non-corporate) place near a bike rack…

      Recommended Thumb up 0

    • dwk May 29, 2018 at 7:02 pm

      Seriously, the bike crowd here is defending drive in restaurants…..
      Beyond satire, does the site manager not get it or is he defending it?
      Who cares to begin with unless you are a car person?

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Toadslick May 30, 2018 at 9:39 am

        Nobody is defending drive-thrus. I’d rather they didn’t exist at all. But since they’re here, they should be useable, at any hour, by people on foot or bicycle.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

      • GlowBoy May 30, 2018 at 10:51 am

        Seriously, the bike crowd here is questioning cyclists for wanting to use drive thrus. Speaking of satire …

        Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Scott Mizée May 29, 2018 at 7:17 pm

      Kyle, thanks for stating your reasoning. I agree that a bicycle going through a car drive-thru is not always ideal.

      I don’t know and Im not asking what your family situation is, but those of us with multiple kids in the car (or on the family cargo bike) probably use drive-through establishments more than those of us who are single.

      How often do people really want to bike in a drive-thru? I don’t know, but I would argue that frequency if use is largely irrelevant in this case.

      Just my 2¢

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Kyle Banerjee May 30, 2018 at 5:12 am

        I don’t understand why motorists like drive thrus, so they make even less sense to me as a cyclist. I can’t tell you how often I see people waiting for long periods of time so they can get food in a bag which just wrecks it and is awkward to handle even in a car. As cyclists are exposed to the elements which are typically unfriendly to whatever you buy and even more awkward to handle/transport, these effects are amplified.

        I don’t know if family situations change frequency of use — seems like everyone I know uses them.

        In any case, I refuse to support any business that doesn’t make me feel welcome or that mistreats anyone. If force is required to get someone to do the right thing, it tells you their real character, and I don’t want anything to do with them.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

        • Middle of the Road Guy May 30, 2018 at 11:15 am

          I’ve never understood it either. How lazy must one be? I find it hilarious that people would rather sit in line 10 minutes at a drive through than walk in and walk out with an order in less than 5.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

          • austin May 30, 2018 at 12:18 pm

            When we’re on the road, trying to get somewhere, and the kids are asleep, it’s nice to just roll through somewhere. Sometimes taking the kids in takes more time and effort than sitting in line for 10 minutes. Sometimes, I just don’t want to get out of my car. Sometimes we have our dogs in the car and don’t want to leave them while we go inside. Sometimes we do go inside. Sometimes it is just nice to sit and listen to the radio while waiting. Sometimes someone’s life is different than yours.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

            • Scott Mizée May 30, 2018 at 2:12 pm

              ^^^^^^^^Thank you Austin. The voice of reason and reality.

              Recommended Thumb up 0

            • Kyle Banerjee May 30, 2018 at 6:42 pm

              These are great reasons why motorists — especially those traveling distances with kids and animals — might use a drive thru. Based on who I see waiting in drive thru lines in town and what I hear in casual conversation, most people use them for very different reasons in dense urban areas.

              The BP readership appears to cover a fairly broad socioeconomic range, meaning some are relatively well-heeled. I take comfort that no one has complained they were denied valet services.

              Recommended Thumb up 0

              • 9watts May 31, 2018 at 2:52 pm

                “The BP readership appears to cover a fairly broad socioeconomic range, meaning some are relatively well-heeled.”
                I would agree with the second part of that sentence—if our cue to readership is commenters—but not so much the first part.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

          • Dan A May 30, 2018 at 3:12 pm

            Where is that? When I go to my local Taco Bell, they purposely serve people in the drive-thru line at 2 or 3 times the rate of their walk-in customers as a matter of policy.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

            • Kyle Banerjee May 30, 2018 at 7:39 pm

              I used to work in a couple places with that exact same policy — i.e. drive thru gets priority with time targets set at half what they are at the counter.

              All the same, I can tell you from the service end of things that it frequently doesn’t get you served faster for a few reasons:

              1) If no one (or practically no one) is at the counter, you can just walk up and order rather than wait behind others.

              2) The very nature of drive thru ordering slows that part of the process down. Plus, some people can be amazingly slow at ordering. An unbelievable number of people don’t know what they want when it comes time to order.

              3) Handling payment and handing over food is also slower. Some people have to futz around for quite a bit before they move on

              What it boils down to is that if there is no one or only one in front, drive thru will be faster. However, a long drive thru line is typically slower — sometimes much slower. Individual restaurants may vary.

              Recommended Thumb up 0

          • Dan A May 30, 2018 at 3:13 pm

            And, if I’m on my bike and I want to get a bite, I’m going to go through the drive through so I don’t have to park my (lock-less) bike outside.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Pete June 7, 2018 at 5:53 pm

        After the Saturday morning hammerfest, there’s a Wendy’s on my ride home that makes it soooo easy to replenish those lost calories before the afternoon siesta.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

        • Pete June 7, 2018 at 5:53 pm

          Plus walking in Speedplays sucks.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

  • rick May 29, 2018 at 6:54 pm

    Is there a city code to no longer allow the construction of new drive-thrus ?

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Kyle Banerjee May 30, 2018 at 5:56 am

      Anyone who even needs to be told what a rotten idea transporting a cat by bicycle on Columbia is has no business caring for animals. A normal healthy cat would be completely terrorized by a bike ride on Columbia. It is outright cruel to transport a cat that was sick, injured, or in any vulnerable state of health.

      Getting animals home or wherever and caring for them needs to be first and foremost about the animals rather than the owner. They are sentient beings that deserve more than to be treated as accessories or extensions of someone’s personality.

      This has nothing to do with bikes or cars. Taking care of an animal is a major commitment of time and money. Anyone unable to make that commitment or provide an appropriate environment should not adopt. Anyone for whom providing appropriate transport is any kind of hardship is not equipped for the responsibility of owning an animal. There is zero need to own a car, but you need to be willing to make proper arrangements.

      On the cycling angle — this area of Columbia is some of the worst riding in town and make the likes of Powell, Cesar Chavez, Macadam, and nearby Lombard look not so bad in comparison. In a recent article that had lots of supporting comments, Broadway was described as a dangerous street. Has anyone who believes that actually ridden out here? This is dangerous for real.

      Recommended Thumb up 1

      • 9watts May 30, 2018 at 6:28 am

        “This has nothing to do with bikes or cars.”

        Your assertion doesn’t make it so.
        It depends on where you are coming from.
        Most issues can be viewed through this filter, this lens.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

        • Kyle Banerjee May 30, 2018 at 6:53 am

          Correct.

          If you care about the animals, it is true. If you don’t, it is not true. Transporting a cat like that is cruel. Transporting a cat in a vulnerable state for miles in bad weather on a bike can be seriously dangerous.

          Or would you haul someone who needed emergency care to the hospital on a bike or the bus?

          The people who wanted to transport that cat had a cardboard crate. Do you think that would be appropriate should they need to go to the vet, especially if it were raining?

          Recommended Thumb up 0

          • 9watts May 30, 2018 at 8:18 am

            This is reminiscent of so much we hear about danger/trauma in traffic – and ironic. The source is never really in question: speed/noise/danger of cars, of autodom. But how imaginative is it to then insist on ‘solving’ this by requiring another car.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

            • Middle of the Road Guy May 30, 2018 at 11:17 am

              Cars do have some safety devices built in. I’d rather be in a car to car crash then a car to bike crash.

              Recommended Thumb up 0

              • 9watts May 31, 2018 at 7:06 am

                Short-termism.
                We need to figure out how to get out of this crazy lose-lose situation.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

            • BB May 30, 2018 at 12:28 pm

              Keeping in mind that you’re responding to someone who just a little further up in the comments here says that it’s impractical to transport food (and somehow makes it “taste worse”) on a bike as well.

              Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Kyle Banerjee May 30, 2018 at 1:10 pm

                Correct.

                Even letting food sit around a few minutes results in a noticeable degradation in quality. Covering it and transporting it without making it soggy or having the temperature go off is nearly impossible even in a car. The weather here is usually cool and often rainy which does not help a meal transported by bike.

                Putting together a cheap and nutritious meal in less than 20 minutes that tastes way better than any fast food is easy if you know your ingredients and have a solid basic skill set. Put in an hour, and you can easily match fancy restaurants for quality and time commitment at a fraction of the price.

                Do I take from your reply that you think transporting a cat in a cardboard box on a bicycle on a highway with no shoulder is a reasonable thing to do, and you consider this a viable transportation method in the cold and winter when the cat might need emergency medical care?

                Recommended Thumb up 0

              • BB May 30, 2018 at 2:45 pm

                You can “take from my reply” that we don’t live in the black and white world that you paint, and that I find your point of view to be backward, yes.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Gary B May 30, 2018 at 10:44 am

        I’ve taken my cat to the vet on my bike. As far as I can tell, she was very comfortable, moreso than she is when I take her in the car. I suspect she likes being able to see where she’s going. It certainly wasn’t on Columbia, but neither does a ride home from OHS need to be. A couple blocks straight south and you’re in residential NE streets.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Emily May 30, 2018 at 11:34 am

      I would never haul an unfamiliar cat in a cardboard carrier on a bike (well, tbh, even in a car for that matter!). After working in vets and seeing countless cats bolt from carriers of well meaning owners who “know their cats,” I completely understand OHS’s stance on this. They want to do everything in their power to ensure that the cat makes it home without bolting. For most new adopters, that means secured in a vehicle.

      That said, I don’t think it’s inherently worse to transport an animal on a bike or in a pet stroller as long as the operator is able to ensure that the animal will be secured and that the route and conditions are appropriate. As others have mentioned, after crossing Columbia, there is a nice bike greenway. As long as the adopter has a sturdy crate rather than the cardboard box, and the crate is sufficiently secured to the bike, riding should be fine. If the journey is too long, you don’t have the appropriate gear, or it’s pouring rain, maybe consider the cab option, at least for this trip.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

    • John Liu May 30, 2018 at 12:14 pm

      If you can’t get a ride from a friend with a car, or afford a $15 Uber ride, to bring your adopted cat/dog home from OHS, then that is a pretty good clue you don’t have the resources or wherewithal to feed, house, and provide medical care for the cat/dog for the next decade or more. Which means you shouldn’t adopt said cat/dog.

      Recommended Thumb up 1

  • Brian May 30, 2018 at 6:39 am

    I was refused drive thru service last year at that same Burgerville, glad the policy and the law have been changed now!

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Dave May 30, 2018 at 11:44 am

    Did you have to show Muchas Gracias? I’m hungry now.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • billyjo May 30, 2018 at 12:25 pm

    will a bike set off the sensor telling them that there is someone at the board to place an order?

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Kyle Banerjee May 30, 2018 at 3:53 pm

    I’m just glad cyclists and peds can finally utilize tunnel wash services previously available exclusively to motorists — the blatant discrimination against VRUs really got my goat.

    As 33.224.020 clearly states, “The regulations of this chapter apply to all uses that have drive-through facilities.”

    Those who get messy from riding in slop or working outdoors can finally enjoy convenient wash services as drivers have for many years 🙂

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Michael Dowd May 30, 2018 at 4:54 pm

      Why choose a ridiculous example? Why not choose say, someone who needs a vital prescription filled? Or getting a bank problem cleared up so you can meet a payment deadline for your insurance?

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Kyle Banerjee May 31, 2018 at 5:51 am

        Perhaps the question should be of why of all the posts in this thread citing use cases, no one else brought up such examples.

        One thing I find interesting about the entire thrust of the discussion of why cyclists need access to drive thrus is that it revolves heavily around the concept that people have individual circumstances that make it important. Concern over individual circumstances is not a hallmark of this forum. It would be hard to find a more popular topic than why motorists don’t need to drive and why it’s no big deal to take measures to make it more difficult for them to do so as they couldn’t have personal circumstances that make active/public transport completely impractical.

        On an aside note, I’ve never even heard of a motorist using a drive through to clear up a banking problem as such things take significant time and that’s probably the least effective method for addressing such issues.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

        • q May 31, 2018 at 2:45 pm

          Perhaps those examples were mentioned because the article mentions that this law applies to banks and pharmacies. Are you saying that since nobody else had already brought up those examples, they’re not valid?

          If there haven’t been any banks or pharmacies that haven’t kept their drive-throughs open after closing their walk-in areas, great. If there have, now this law helps people who walk or bike to be served equally to people who drive.

          Personally, I’ve had many cases where I had a banking issue or question that couldn’t be solved by me using an ATM, and I solved it with a teller–both in drive-thrus and inside. If the drive-thru were open when the lobby was not, I would have been fine if I’d driven, but out of luck if I had walked or biked, and wasn’t allowed to use the drive-thru. That’s crazy.

          And if you believe (I don’t) that “Concern over individual circumstances is not a hallmark of this forum”, then maybe you should celebrate rather than criticize the fact that people ARE showing concern over individual circumstances in these comments.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

  • pruss2ny May 30, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    had never considered the social injustice created by not allowing bikes/pedestrians through drive throughs….I had always understood the reasoning being that it was for the window-person’s safety–that it is easier for a person on foot/bike to reach in and assault/rob a window late night vs. a person somewhat stuck inside a car…

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • John Liu May 30, 2018 at 9:40 pm

    At the end of the day, this is good but mostly just symbolic. Not many businesses keep their drive through windows open while locking their walk through entry.

    I’d like to see an ordinance that retail ground floor businesses must permit bikes inside unless they have some minimum number of bike racks within X feet of the entrance.

    Recommended Thumb up 1

    • Kyle Banerjee May 31, 2018 at 6:09 am

      I think more bike parking facilities would be welcome as I find them surprisingly lacking for a supposedly cycling city. However, this would be impractical and unfair to businesses unless it were tied to the number of motor vehicle spaces provided.

      Space is very expensive, and many ground floor businesses (especially smaller ones) provide no parking whatsoever to anyone. The underlying premise of such a requirement is that it is a hardship to expect people who engage in active transportation to walk a little. Despite the fact I get around a lot of areas pretty much exclusively by bike, I regard bikes inside establishment as nuisances and don’t favor require allowing them in.

      I find implications made by some here that there is some civil rights issue involved is absolutely ridiculous.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • q May 31, 2018 at 2:25 pm

        There’s definitely a civil rights issue in the case of businesses that this new regulation was aimed at (those who only served people arriving in cars). The ADA addresses civil rights. Many people cannot drive due to disabilities. If say, a person with impaired vision who wants a cup of coffee or burger, and is refused service because he arrived on foot instead of driving, but cannot drive due to his disability, that seems like a civil rights violation to me.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

        • Kyle Banerjee June 1, 2018 at 6:36 am

          If they are not served because of a disability, that is a civil rights issue. That is not the basis on which this was raised.

          It is ludicrous to even imply cyclists are a disadvantaged class of people. Even if we were to ignore they are more white, male, able bodied, and wealthy than the population at large, they lose that identity every time they get off their bikes.

          It diminishes those who endure real disadvantages and who suffer real oppression to claim that there is any comparison at all.

          I’d be curious what actual blind people make of this. In a former life, I had a blind GF for 6 years and I ran the Talking Books and Braille systems at the state for 5 years. I have spent countless hours with blind people from different walks of life over a period of years and one of my unusual skills is I read Braille (BTW, most blind people can’t).

          I am familiar with all kinds of challenges blind people face doing things sighted people take for granted, but I have never heard of a desire to use a drive thru.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

          • q June 1, 2018 at 12:27 pm

            So what if that’s not why the issue was raised? It’s still relevant. If someone cannot drive due to a disability, and a business will not serve people who do not arrive by driving, then that person is left unserved due to the business’s policy. That’s exactly why the ADA exists.

            I’ve never said cyclists are disadvantaged, or claimed any comparison between their situations and those of people with disabilities. I haven’t seen anyone else here make that comparison, either.

            The issue isn’t whether blind people want to use drive-thrus. I’m sure some may, some may not–they don’t think in a block. It’s whether businesses should be allowed to limit service to people who are able do drive. I’m glad the new law says they cannot.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

          • soren June 2, 2018 at 7:44 am

            “Even if we were to ignore they are more white, male, able bodied, and wealthy than the population at large”

            In the Portland metro area people who cycle for transportation are poorer and slightly less white than the general population. The means to own a car and/or maintain a car in working order is an economic privilege.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

        • Kyle Banerjee June 1, 2018 at 7:13 am

          BTW, although I’ve never heard a blind person express a desire to use a drive thru, I have heard many express a desire to drive. I took my GF to a deserted stretch to let her one day while I gave instruction. Scared the crap out of both of us (she had RP, so her vision was totally zero) — the experiment was not repeated.

          Mobility is a huge, huge deal for blind people. Options are few, the best one typically being slow and unreliable public transit frequented by weirdos who can be very scary when you can’t see what’s going on.

          We broke up long ago and I haven’t worked or volunteered in a disability office for over a decade, but I’d be pretty surprised if AVs and cheap rideshare are not seen as highly positive things in the blind community. So if drive thrus are presented as something that needs to be prioritized for people with disabilities, maybe people can support modes of transport that are more usable to people for whom active and public transit represent a genuine hardship.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

          • q June 1, 2018 at 11:45 am

            Yes, people with vision problems or other disabilities face all kinds of obstacles. But at least now, with this new law, if a business closes off its interior, so only the drive-thru is available, any person who cannot drive knows they can still get service.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

          • q June 1, 2018 at 12:57 pm

            Nobody’s saying drive-thrus need to be prioritized for people with disabilities. People with disabilities who can drive or ride in cars can already use them. The issue is the issue the new law addresses–businesses that wouldn’t serve people who didn’t arrive by driving or riding in cars.

            And I don’t doubt that rideshare options have advantages over taking transit for some people with disabilities, just as they do for other people. But at least the new law removes one disadvantage transit users (with disabilities or not) have had.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

      • John Liu June 2, 2018 at 2:59 pm

        I think this policy would be an incentive for businesses to install or get the city to install bike racks. X feet could be 100′. I’m not saying every storefront should have a bike rack right in front. I’m more thinking about when there’s not a bike rack on the whole blockface.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Todd Boulanger May 31, 2018 at 2:21 pm

      Well time will tell if you are correct…though there are likely more businesses with this policy than you may be aware of…just depends on where you go and what services you buy AND when (time of day).

      In my experience, the businesses that have excluded bikes and pedestrians [and likely ADA wheelchairs] from drive-thru lanes when they have locked their pedestrian entrance earlier are national fast food restaurants and banks. These businesses AND those with drive-thru type facilities are typically in the more suburban areas.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Rivelo
    Rivelo May 31, 2018 at 6:59 am
    • John Liu May 31, 2018 at 10:58 am

      And Dutch Bros Coffee kiosks!

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Dan A May 31, 2018 at 12:13 pm

        I stopped at a Dutch Bros kiosk in the middle of a long ride in 2011. Some sort of whipped treat was enough to get me back home.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Doug June 4, 2018 at 3:53 pm

      Yes, if you go back in time to when Fotomat developed your film, you’ll find that they allow bike-up service now.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

  • truthseeker May 31, 2018 at 12:15 pm

    get ready for lots of bike up armed robberies

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Pete June 7, 2018 at 5:35 pm

      I’m guessing you’re joking, but if not, what’s preventing that from happening now? A law??

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • q June 7, 2018 at 5:48 pm

        Couldn’t happen until now because bikes weren’t allowed in drive-thrus. We’ll also now get non-driving criminals moving here from all the cities that don’t allow bikes in drive-thrus. Same with criminals who walk but don’t drive. Previously, they would have gone home when the banks and restaurants close. Now, they’ll be able to stay out and hit the drive-thrus. Nobody thought of any of this when the new law was passed.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

        • Dan A June 7, 2018 at 7:54 pm

          har har

          Recommended Thumb up 0

    • q May 31, 2018 at 12:45 pm

      Note the incident at the end of the article involving a woman who was refused service, due to “company policy”, when she rode her horse up to the drive-thru window, so she took her horse inside…

      Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Wanderer June 4, 2018 at 10:02 am

    Personally, I think my cat would freak out whether she was being transported by car or bike (in a cat carrier). She’d suspect, probably rightly, that she was going to the vet.

    Aren’t some of those coffee places purely drive up? So by definition under this code provision they wouldn’t have walk in service and would be required to serve bikes at the drive up window.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Brad jacks June 5, 2018 at 10:00 am

    Why are bikers allowed to ride their bikes with a strobe light on the front of their bike. When nobody else can have anything on the road but a strobe light except emergency vehicles. When that bike with the strobe light gets them know night vision for themselves and they ruin everybody else’s Night vision

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Dan A June 5, 2018 at 11:03 am

      Did you type this with your thumbs while driving?

      Why are cars allowed to have windows tinted dark enough that you can’t see humans inside? Why are they allowed to have infotainment systems? Why are semi trucks allowed to have hubcap spikes (http://www.empirechromeshop.com/images/product/medium/16179.jpg)? Why are they not required to have side guards? Why aren’t all commercial vehicles required to have an onboard camera or telemetry? Why are pickup trucks allowed to be jacked up to car-crushing heights without having their bumpers lowered to a standard height? Why aren’t studded tires taxed to account for their damage? Why are you not concerned with SUV/truck headlights aimed incorrectly (seriously, I am blinded by these way more often than bike headlights)? Why aren’t speed limiters required for cars using public roads? Does anyone really need to go over 90 for any reason, ever? Why are radar detectors legal?

      I mean, if we’re lodging complaints and all.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Brad jacks June 7, 2018 at 5:02 pm

        Oregon does have a law for windows that are tinted to dark to see into the vehicle.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

        • 9watts June 7, 2018 at 5:03 pm

          One of many that are not enforced.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

        • Dan A June 7, 2018 at 8:14 pm

          I regularly encounter vehicles where I cannot see into the windows to determine whether or not there’s a person inside, much less whether they are looking in my direction or not. If there’s a mandate to enforce this law, it should be awfully easy to do. You must have at least 35% light transmission (too low of a number, IMO), which you can simulate using this tool: https://www.tinting-laws.com/tint-preview/

          I take it you agree with the rest of this list? Get all of that stuff fixed, and I’ll tell my biker bros to stop using front strobes. I find them obnoxious myself, except maybe in the daytime when it helps people not get run over by drivers hunting for Tesla easter eggs.

          Hey, I found one!

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PuWO6YiaZes

          Recommended Thumb up 0