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With video of lawbreakers, PPB will increase focus on infamous Ladd Circle stop sign

Posted by on January 29th, 2019 at 3:42 pm

Stop sign entering Ladd Circle.
(Photo: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

UPDATE, 1/31: Please read this update where I give Traffic Division Sgt. Ty Engstrom the opportunity to clarify and expand on his concerns about this issue.

Here we go again.

The Portland Police Bureau just released a statement saying they’ll step up education and enforcement efforts around Ladd Circle because road users are not coming to a stop and watching for others before rolling through.

Here’s the statement:

After receiving multiple community complaints about motorists and cyclists failing to heed stop signs and endangering pedestrians in the Ladd’s Addition neighborhood, the Portland Police Bureau’s Traffic Division responded to assess the situation. Sergeant Ty Engstrom of the Traffic Division observed the area and also the practice of most motorists and cyclists failing to come to a complete stop as required by law at the intersections.

The Ladd’s Addition intersections are roundabouts with one-way traffic and many of the motorists and cyclists, in addition to failing to stop, are also not looking to their right to check for pedestrians who have the right of way. This puts vulnerable pedestrians at risk. This residential neighborhood has a high amount of pedestrian traffic as adults, children, and pets travel on foot.

Sergeant Ty Engstrom determined this was an opportunity to educate the public about the dangers of this behavior. The Traffic Division plans to follow the public education with enforcement missions to highlight the dangers of failing to heed the rules of the road.

In 2018, there were 34 fatalities on Portland roadways and of those 18 were pedestrians. So far in 2019, there have been 3 fatalities and 2 have been pedestrians. The Portland Police Bureau asks for the community’s help in reducing traffic fatalities by following the rules of the road and being aware of pedestrians.

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The City of Portland has adopted a program called Vision Zero with the goal of reducing the number of serious-injury and fatal crashes to zero by 2025. Sergeant Engstrom reminds us, “Not all fatal and serious-injury crashes are at high speeds. In fact, some are at very low speeds. Please slow down and obey the law, no matter what mode of transportation you use.” The Portland Police Bureau will be following up to educate, then enforce traffic codes in the Ladd’s Addition area in the coming weeks.

The PPB also released this short video which clearly shows several bicycle riders failing to comply with the stop sign.

It’s unfortunate that people aren’t being more considerate and careful when entering the circle. It’s equally unfortunate that after well over a decade we seem to have made no progress on this issue.

Yes it was in 2007 that we first covered enforcement of the Ladd Circle stop signs. Back then it was the exact same issue: Residents complained about it and police responded. And then advocates became outraged that, given all the much more serious traffic safety concerns plaguing our city, our precious police resources where being wasted on such a relatively safe intersection.

Also in 2007 we shared a statement from the Portland Bureau of Transportation saying that the solution to this issue is a redesign of the circle so we can remove the stops signs altogether.

In the meantime, I encourage everyone who enters Ladd Circle to be respectful, slow down and look for oncoming traffic and people on the sidewalk before rolling through.

Here is additional coverage of this issue from our archives:
Police report on Ladds Circle enforcement (4/12/07)
Police target Ladds for educational mission (7/22/08)
Ladds stop sign ‘trip-wire’ incident garners headlines (7/22/10)
Ladd Circle stop sign issue heating up again (6/27/11)
Video shows extremely low compliance at Ladd Circle stop signs (6/28/11)
Solution for Ladd Circle stop sign issue? Cookies (7/1/11)
Neighbors distribute survey to help fix Ladd Circle traffic problems (10/18/11)
Police enforcement at Ladd Circle, N Flint ruffles feathers once again (8/30/12)
Stop! Police will target Ladd Circle stop sign violators today (9/18/13)
Southeast Portland elementary warns parents about unsafe cycling near school (3/1/16)

— 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

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dan
Guest
dan

I bike commuted through here for about 15 years and would say that a large majority of cyclists do not look to the right for pedestrians before entering the circle. Probably the same for motorists, but it’s harder to tell with them…

Should this be an enforcement priority? No. Do a lot of people behave disrespectfully to pedestrians here? Yes.

Andrew Kreps
Guest
Andrew Kreps

Have any of the 37 fatalities in the past 13 months on Portland roadways happened in, around, or anywhere near Ladd’s Circle where the enforcement action is happening? I honestly can’t recall any traffic collisions in there since an unfortunate soul lost control of his steed and careened into an oncoming car many years ago.

This leaves me wishing I could complain and get enforcement of bike box rules, no turn on red rules, red light runners, and people who drive in bike lanes while I’m in them.

ugh
Guest
ugh

This is the only place that I have ever been hit by a cyclist as a pedestrian. It sucked. Probably worse for him as he fell off the bike. Not so much as an apology either. Sigh…

Doubtful that an afternoon of cops will fix anything and I’m certain there are better places to wield our limited enforcement budget.

Chris I
Guest
Chris I

This is probably one of the safest large intersections in the city. Low speeds, limited movements, well-marked crosswalks… Hopefully someone doesn’t die in East Portland while this operation is being conducted.

Bjorn
Guest
Bjorn

Portland has plenty of data to show that this intersection is high usage but extremely safe. It is absolutely an egregious waste of resources to continue doing these completely unnecessary stings. I believe it is time for the city to remove the stop signs completely, but barring that I do have a question. Why when they do crosswalk stings targeting motor vehicles at actual dangerous locations do they put up big huge warning signs that say crosswalk enforcement ahead, but when they do these ladd’s stings they don’t put up big warning signs?

9watts
Subscriber

I’ve asked this question repeatedly, and I’ve been told (if memory serves me) that the crosswalk things are a PBOT program, whereas these stings are initiated by the PPB. Not suggesting this is an adequate response but I was told words to that effect.

J_R
Guest
J_R

It makes absolutely no sense for STOP signs to be the traffic control at these intersections. The circulator is a one-way street; only right turns are permitted. Each of the STOP signs should be replaced with a YIELD sign. THEN, and only then, should there be some pedestrian crossing enforcement actions.

Of all the places to do enforcement, this ranks about number 900 on my list. Every day, I see motorists blow through red lights, fail to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks, and exceed the speed limit by 10 mph.

It is unacceptable for bicyclists to fail to yield at crosswalks, but having an enforcement action at a location where there is little possibility of a major injury while ignoring places where many major injuries have occurred is ridiculous.

By the way, I stop at those stupid stop signs.

Ken S
Guest
Ken S

I’d go a step further and replace all STOP and YIELD signs with a hybrid of the two shapes that just reads TAKE TURNS

Jeff
Guest
Jeff

I’m not sure what the income level of a neighborhood has to do with the enforcement of traffic laws. Ladd’s Addition is a nice neighborhood, but let’s not act like this is a service for some rich Dunthorpe enclave.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

These stings seem to be targeting residents… you know, the “rich people”.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

You think they won’t stop cars that blow through the stop sign?

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

This operation is targeting the affluent in exactly the same way that a sting in a poor neighborhood is targeting the poor. You can change that to “benefiting” if you want.

Bjorn
Guest
Bjorn

they are not targeting residents, this is the main bike route into town from much of SE. The real reason people who live nearby complain is that they want ladd’s to be a gated community. If cyclists start avoiding Ladd’s to avoid the stings they will be forced onto more dangerous routes. I actually think that the stings are reducing safety overall for this reason.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

>>> people who live nearby complain is that they want ladd’s to be a gated community. <<<

That is patently false. People really are ticked about cyclist behavior there. Whether that's rational or not is a different issue, but your statement of intention is completely wrong.

Bjorn
Guest
Bjorn

It would be interesting to find out how many of the cyclists who get caught in this sting live in Ladd’s. If there is a way to get the data from the last sting I am happy to make a bet with you that none of them did. I have talked to some of the people who requested stings in the past, it was clear to me that they would love to do anything they could to reduce the appeal of ladd’s as a bike route.

soren
Guest
soren

“That is patently false.”

Or maybe not.

A minority Ladd’s Addition residents have vociferously complained about the volume of bike traffic in NA meetings, city planning meetings, and in the local media countless times. One of the main demands of this vocal minority has been that bike traffic should be routed out of “their neighborhood”. This intensely exclusionary position is precisely what the vernacular idiom, “gated community”, means.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

Which neighborhood meetings have people been vociferously complaining at? Surely that would be in the minutes. Where in the media has this “vocal minority” been complaining (and do you have evidence it is enough people to constitute a “minority” and not a lone crank or two?)

You’ve made two easily verifiable assertions of fact (along with your unverifiable ones). I’d love to see your evidence.

dwk
Guest
dwk

You are trying extra hard on this one to be outlier……. Enforcement resources spent here is ridiculous and you know it…

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

I 100% agree.

Granpa
Guest
Granpa

Eat the rich and hang their bones on a fence to warn the rest

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

Now you’ve made me hungry!

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

Okay, I got their bones up. Now what?

Middle of The Road Guy
Guest
Middle of The Road Guy

HK,

Now you can run as a Progressive with your Bona Fides.

Granpa
Guest
Granpa

This was so extreme a statement that I assumed the sarcasm was evident. the Ladds Edition houses are small, with small lots and they are old but well kept. Rich people, like, really rich people do not live in Ladds Edition. People who work and fret about expenses live in Ladds. Often the residents just got into the neighborhood early. I remember in the mid 80s, a small 4 bedroom on one of the gardens was listed for $54K and although I wanted it, it was beyond my budget, but actually cheap even then.

The eagerness and enthusiasm with which participants on this blog vilify successful people is disheartening. By “successful” I mean being able to pay bills and pay the bank the mortgage. That is middle class, not rich. Middle class folks ride bikes, they hate being put in harms way by motor vehicles. Many consider earth their favorite planet and understand the harm the world’s economic model is causing to it. In some regards they live in hypocracy, but they also live in reality.

Participants of this blog revel in an anarchistic sub-culture that delights in deriding “others”. Perhaps those “others” are just old versions of you.

Anyway, As I have done, pay it forward if you witness a sting. turn around, go back and tell riders behind you that there is an enforcement action up ahead

Matt S.
Guest
Matt S.

There’s a certain level of luxury about living in Ladd’s Addition, whereas you can’t say the same for living on Powell and 136th.

soren
Guest
soren

When I first moved here 20 years ago it was common to see people cycling stop at stop signs on Bike Boulevards. Moreover, there were strident campaigns led by the city and bike advocates urging people to *STOP* making us look bad. These campaigns have disappeared and I’m happy to observe that the majority of people cycling on Neighborhood Greenways now safely roll stop signs.

Seeing a family biking roll through a stop sign on Clinton never fails to bring a smile to my face.

SERider
Guest
SERider

And is cycling today any better for it Soren?

Reading this blog I would guess most would say “no”.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

It is also now true that a majority of auto drivers on greenways roll stop signs. So progress all around!

Dan A
Subscriber
Dan A

FE

Bald One
Guest
Bald One

It seems like the enforcement actions are targeting folks with out-of-state bike licenses and Clackamas county registrations.

Jeff
Guest
Jeff

The frequency of stings probably has something to do with this being the major hub for bike commuting traffic in inner SE (the part of town that I imagine has the highest number of bike commuters)? You’re right, I don’t live in Ladd’s Addition, but I cross through it on my way to a nearby neighborhood of similar affluence. Again, this isn’t Irvington, Eastmoreland, etc.

Edward
Guest
Edward

Basing enforcement actions on community complaints is just bad policy. For starters, there’s the notion that “a sense of danger” can be a good thing – in that everyone works just a little harder to be on the lookout when the danger is obvious. So just because people are complaining doesn’t mean it needs this particular “solution.”

A good policy would be: PBOT traffic engineers direct enforcement actions based on science. As in, “We have a demonstrable measurable lack of safety at location Y, caused by a disregard of clearly signed rules, etc. Because regular enforcement actions improve this metric of safety, we will do …. X .” Without that, it’s just randomly punishing people — for no measurably good result.

Middle of The Road Guy
Guest
Middle of The Road Guy

Near misses? Close calls? If those do not count, then we can surely apply those standards to other areas.

Matt S.
Guest
Matt S.

It’s all about the optics of stopping bicyclists.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

>>> Basing enforcement actions on community complaints is just bad policy. <<<

I totally agree with this, but the mayor, who is elected, may see it differently. Enforcement priorities and levels are ultimately resource allocation issues, and are inherently political. If we, as a community, want to change them, we need to engage at the political level. Whining in this forum and othering residents of Ladd's Addition are going to change exactly nothing.

Calling the mayor en masse will get better results.

Johnny Bye Carter
Subscriber
Johnny Bye Carter

Maybe you’re unfamiliar with the battle between west hills residents and skateboarders.

soren
Guest
soren

“Please slow down and obey the law, no matter what mode of transportation you use.”

I very much agree that people cycling should slow down for people walking.

Howeover, I disagree that we should obey the law that requires people cycling to come to a full stop at stop signs. I After all, several studies suggest that coming to a complete stop is, if anything, slightly less safe than Idaho Stopping.

I personally try to set a positive example by Idaho stopping every time I can do so safely.

A video illustration of the Idaho Stop:
https://vimeo.com/4140910

Middle of The Road Guy
Guest
Middle of The Road Guy

Here you go…you advocating for things that benefit yourself. It won’t hurt to stop, either…would it?

soren
Guest
soren

Yes…riding in a safer manner benefits me. Doing so also benefits others.

Two studies of the Idaho stop show that it is measurably safer. One study showed that it resulted in 14% fewer crashes and another indicated that Idaho has less severe crashes.[13][14] Similarly, tests of a modified form of the Idaho Stop in Paris “found that allowing the cyclists to move more freely cut down the chances of collisions with cars, including accidents involving the car’s blind spot.”[15]

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Idaho_stop

Middle of the Road Guy
Guest
Middle of the Road Guy

But it is the law but that is NOT currently the law here, is it?

Johnny Bye Carter
Subscriber
Johnny Bye Carter

We don’t obey laws simply because they’re laws. We’ve had enough civil rights to know when not to obey oppressive laws.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

Exactly — we change or repeal oppressive laws.

Johnny Bye Carter
Subscriber
Johnny Bye Carter

I advocate for everything that benefits me at the expense of nobody.

Allan Rudwick
Subscriber

Like every intersection in portland, the odds of being busted for a violation are still incredibly low because there is almost no traffic enforcement of any kind anywhere in town.

I completely agree with the massive amount of criticism PBOT gets whenever doing enforcement at Ladd’s. Let’s focus enforcement to locations with serious injuries/fatalities

paikiala
Guest
paikiala

PBOT doesn’t do enforcement.

Q
Guest
Q

Your bickering comment doesn’t address the subject.

curly
Subscriber
curly

>PBOT doesn’t do enforcement.<

Correct, but it's done at PBOT's request.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

The great irony of the crosswalks in Ladd’s is that everyone gets bent when people don’t stop for one half of the crosswalk (as they’re entering the circle), but no one cares if cars or bikes go really fast over the other half (as they’re exiting the circle). If anything, it is the exiting half that is more dangerous, as vehicles are going faster, and it’s not always clear if they’ll be turning across the crosswalk until the last second.

Since everyone should be stopping at the stop sign, why not add a parking-lot speed bump there to reinforce the practice?

q
Guest
q

That’s quite insightful about the exiting. Crosswalks at a roundabout ARE much different than at typical intersections. And you exactly right about every aspect of it–the danger, the fact it’s hard to tell until the last second whether a vehicle is exiting, etc.

paikiala
Guest
paikiala

Only hard to tell if a person driving is violating the law by not signaling said exit.

q
Guest
q

First of all, people often don’t signal in that circle, or if they do, they signal at the last second because if they’re not familiar with the area, they need to see the street sign before they know they’re at the street they want to turn onto.

Second, the circle, within about the same distance as a single typical block or so, has EIGHT streets entering and exiting it. If you turn on your signal well ahead of your turn, you’ll be passing at least one turnoff with your signal on. If you wait to turn it on until you’ve passed the street right before your turnoff, you’ll be turning your signal on only a few yards from when you’re making the turn.

So your observation is irrelevant, because many people don’t signal, and wrong anyway, because it can still be hard to tell even when people do signal.

Bjorn
Guest
Bjorn

Again there have been 0 pedestrian injuries at the circle in over a decade. Let’s stop sensationalizing the “dangers” within Ladd’s.

q
Guest
q

It seems like removing the stop signs altogether would be a roundabout approach.

David Hampsten
Guest

That sounds like circular reasoning…

Kate
Guest
Kate

These puns are really helping me get through the morning the stop and go

(not as good at this)

David
Guest
David

The thought of this action being tied in any way, shape, or form to Vision Zero is so thoroughly disappointing that it’s hard to put into words. Through the statement posted here it is clear that PPB does not clearly understand the point of Vision Zero nor the actions necessary to achieve it.

If the focus of this was on car drivers blowing stop signs and speeding (in an area with a history of serious-injury and fatal crashes) it would definitely make sense in the context of advancing the city’s goals. If the blurb at the end was missing this could be a plausible use of PPB’s scarce resources though with the strong emphasis on equity in everything the city does this move does seem to be a head-scratcher without more explanation about how this meets our equity goals surrounding enforcement.

If PPB really wanted to look at getting people to stop at intersections they could stick to downtown, or High Crash Corridors/Intersections, and have their pick of places where people (mostly driving cars) fail to stop at stop signs or red traffic lights.

A bicyclist running a stop sign has not caused another person to be seriously injured or killed in the City of Portland as far as I can find (it’s obviously a bad outcome when a person riding a bike hits someone on foot and I do not want to ignore the harm caused by these crashes). While this action is not legal, labeling it as a threat to others to the same degree as cars failing to stop is disingenuous and enforcement actions like this are a pretty flagrant misallocation of resources until such time as more prominent enforcement actions, like the one last week, stop tagging such high volumes of drivers with breaking one or more laws that do lead directly to harming others.

9watts
Subscriber

“The thought of this action being tied in any way, shape, or form to Vision Zero is so thoroughly disappointing that it’s hard to put into words. Through the statement posted here it is clear that PPB does not clearly understand the point of Vision Zero nor the actions necessary to achieve it.”

Thank you for putting this so well!

Other US cities (SF, NYC) which have taken up the Vision Zero mantle get it. They waste not a word on blaming pedestrians or hassling those on bikes. They recognize what we all know, which is that the menace, danger, death, maiming emanates from four (or more) wheels, and with more speed and mass than the human powered modes we are discussing here.

matchupancakes
Guest
matchupancakes

I am nominating David’s critique of how the Portland Police Bureau understands and prioritizes actions that it aligns with Vision Zero for BikePortland’s Comment of the Week.

Sunsetting
Guest
Sunsetting

Are you suggesting road users to roll through?
“In the meantime, I encourage everyone who enters Ladd Circle to slow down and look for oncoming traffic and people on the sidewalk before rolling through.”
Id highly recommend obeying stop signs. Not doing so may anger those other road users. Also, let’s follow the laws. They are there for a reason!

Bjorn
Guest
Bjorn

I recommend everyone use Idaho Style stops, the city is using stop signs as traffic calming in violation of their own stated policy and we have far too many stop signs. It makes no sense to come to a complete stop at every one of them.

Jeff
Guest
Jeff

Outrageous that you can’t get behind normalizing this traffic circle to commonly held international standards.

paikiala
Guest
paikiala

not so outrageous as expensive. The ‘standard’ is not just yield signs. It includes modifying the islands and entry to require slowing, and moving the crossings 20 feet back from the yield line. the last estimate was $40k per intersection.

q
Guest
q

If your concern is that “Not doing so (obeying stop signs) may anger those other road users”, why not consider removing the stop signs?

When you say, “Let’s follow the laws. They are there for a reason!”, remember that every law that was ever changed replaced a law that “was there for a reason”. Sometimes the reasons aren’t very good, which is why laws are constantly changing.

soren
Guest
soren

The reason:
Some people who drive (OR legislators) are prejudiced against people cycling and drafted a punitive law that is completely irrelevant to safety.

Dan A
Subscriber
Dan A

What an egregious waste of resoures. We have maybe 5 patrol officers working at any one time (who knows, I haven’t seen one in months) and now they are spending their time doing this.
Baffling.

Doug Klotz
Subscriber

My guess: PPD gets requests for enforcement from many areas. But some Police officers (many of whom drive from Vancouver), are annoyed at bicyclists, and jump on the chance to ticket cyclists, with the pretext that the neighbors called them about it. Prove me wrong.

hotrodder
Guest
hotrodder

You might be right, but I can think of lots of intersections where cyclists flout the rules with impunity. 2 in particular are NE Flint at NE Broadway, and NE Tillamook at NE 28th.

If they wanted, those annoyed Vancouver-dwelling cops could sit and write their fill of tickets all day long. There are plenty’o other examples in Portland.

As others have mentioned, for all the reasons they mention, Ladds Addition is THE dumbest place to pull this sting.

(I wonder if this is a few malcontents who live on the circle getting back at the funhogs for putting on the little 500?)

SD
Guest
SD

Maybe at the same time?

Ricochet
Guest
Ricochet

The neighbors by and large love the 500, and many will set up in their front yards to watch / participate. Regardless, the circle is a park- the 500 is a celebration of spring, stupidity, and (most importantly) public space.

Also worth noting that the Official Route for the 500 encounters exactly zero stop signs.

9watts
Subscriber

I think it also matches some of the statements we’ve heard here from folks on bikes who have heard cops expressing these very sentiments: that folks on bikes don’t belong, are putting themselves in danger by being out and about, etc.

Middle of The Road Guy
Guest
Middle of The Road Guy

isn’t that hearsay?

9watts
Subscriber

Well the cop who wrote me a $265 ticket for unsafe passing on the right (which he incidentally didn’t witness himself, but inferred from what the guy he saw and ticketed for running a red light in his Land Rover told him I had done=hearsay) expressed sentiments that align with these to me (not hearsay) besides revealing that he didn’t understand the unsafe passing on the right statute.

Middle of the Road Guy
Guest
Middle of the Road Guy

I’m going to ask the question again because I don’t think you read it correctly since you answered a different question.

That’s still hearsay, no?

9watts
Subscriber

I can confirm what others have reported regarding unprompted and uncalled for anti-bike attitudes from our police. Not sure what else you are looking for.

soren
Guest
soren

The traffic cop who wrote me a $265 ticket for passing a completely stationary traffic jam on screamed at me: “This is why you people are killed” (or something similar to this). I filed a complaint with City Auditor and spoke to Officer’s supervisor so there is a record if anyone doubts this.

Considering that Officer Balzer admitted to me that he was unsure what he should cite me with the interaction was clearly rooted in anti-cyclist bias.

Middle of the Road Guy
Guest
Middle of the Road Guy

Did you in fact do something that warranted a ticket?

soren
Guest
soren

I passed stationary motorvehicles on my bike. This is a very bad, apparently.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

Given that the officer was utterly irrational and out of control (screaming at you, no less), uncertainty about what to cite you with does not prove he was anti-cyclist. From your description, it sounds like the officer saw you do something he thought was dangerous, but was unsure how to frame it as a legal violation. Evidently he calmed himself down and figured it out.

In an adversarial interaction, it is easy to assume the worst about others. We see that here in the comments, but in the followup story, the officer turns out to be a cyclist himself, and is not obviously an irrational bike hater trying to strike a blow for drivers everywhere.

Matt S.
Guest
Matt S.

I believe you’re correct. The vast, vast majority of police drive into work and think bicycling is an odd behavior.

q
Guest
q

Three things that jump right out to me in the video (or when actually there):

–First, the stop signs are pretty far back from the circle’s curb–almost so far that if you stop behind the sign, by the time you’re actually going into the circle, you could be going almost as fast as if you’d never stopped.
–Second, the circle’s road is wide, when you proceed into the circle, you’re nowhere close to getting in the way of a car driving in the circle.
–Third, at at typical 90 degree intersection, you need to look almost a full 90 degrees to the left to see oncoming traffic. But here, traffic in the circle is approaching you diagonally–you can see it by turning your glance just slightly left of forward–you don’t really even need to turn your head. And the same applies the other way–drivers can see you entering the circle very easily, because you’re not coming at them from the side, but diagonally.

For all these reasons, coming to a full stop on a bike doesn’t seem necessary in comparison to a typical right-angle intersection.

Bald One
Guest
Bald One

Good point about the stop signs being far back from the road entrance at the same line as the sidewalk – this is a typical design and sign placement. How many cars do you see driving around in a neighborhood that will first stop at the stop sign and look both ways for peds at the sidewalk, and then slowly pull forward and look both ways for bikes and cars before entering the road? Not many. If PPB could enforce car drivers’ behavior that don’t stop for at least 10 feet after the stop sign – until their bumper is into the roadway, that would REALLY be an improvement to pedestrian safety. See it all the time.

q
Guest
q

This reminds me of years ago in Seattle when the police were hiding in the bushes in the dark, late at night, to catch people skinny-dipping in Lake Washington in the Arboretum. So yeah, they caught naked people, but people who could claim they were there at night with nobody visible around specifically because they were diligently trying to avoid offending anyone, and if there had been people around, they wouldn’t have done it.

Here, with the camera, they’re catching people who might always stop fully if there were anyone else around. It’d be different if they put a pedestrian or person biking out there and focused on people who ran the signs in a way that actually interfered with those other users.

9watts
Subscriber

“It’d be different if they put a pedestrian or person biking out there and focused on people who ran the signs in a way that actually interfered…”

You mean like the decoys used for the ‘crosswalk enforcements”?

q
Guest
q

Yes, exactly. Not stopping for someone actually trying to cross is a much more serious offense to me than getting caught by a camera not stopping at a stop sign when there’s nobody around.

9watts
Subscriber

I know.

Maybe Jonathan can ask the right people to lay out *exactly* why these two actions seem in every way to be different, and what the thinking behind those differences is, and whether (rhetorical question) any thought was given to the relative severity, probability, danger of the two scenarios before deciding on the setup?

SERider
Guest
SERider

In many cases, the POINT of stopping is that you can’t always see when someone is trying to cross.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

It is in Ladd’s (not at the traffic circle), ironically, that I’ve come closest to hitting someone legally crossing the street while riding — it was at night, and they were dressed in dark colors and damn if I didn’t see them stepping out of the shadows.

soren
Guest
soren

i think it has helped normalize typical cycling behavior which is always a good thing. it’s also arguably a safer behavior so has likely prevented a few collisions and injuries.

from a political perspective, i believe that the the fact that this behavior is now ubiquitous has diminished the efficacy of the “i saw a biker blow a stop sign so we should not fund bike lanes” argument. i hear this argument far less often than i did 10 years ago.

as for this behavior stirring up anti-cycling-sentiment, i never bought that argument. even if some sort of hard-to-imagine advocacy campaign were to increase compliance 300%, there would still be more than enough “bikers blowing stop signs” to justify stereotypes and bias.

soren
Guest
soren

This was supposed to go elsewhere. Not sure why the reply function is losing focus mid-comment.

Dan A
Subscriber
Dan A

If your vehicle has ‘A’ pillars, you should always come to a complete stop. If the visibility at the intersection is poor or there is cross-traffic, you should come to a complete stop regardless of mode. If the visibility is good and there is no cross-traffic, I don’t think there is any benefit to coming to a full stop on a bike or in sneakers.

Dan A
Subscriber
Dan A

Platinum!

9watts
Subscriber

Couldn’t be. Platinum doesn’t tarnish, but our metal has tarnished a lot.

Pewter!

Dan A
Subscriber
Dan A

Sarcasm!

9watts
Subscriber

Understood!
Same Here!

soren
Guest
soren

I think the League of American Bicyclists should create new non-metal rankings for cities that have regressed. I can think of a few organic materials that would better symbolize Portland’s lack progress — .

Bald One
Guest
Bald One

Lithium!

Dan A
Subscriber
Dan A

ha ha

9watts
Subscriber

You’re catching on!

soren
Guest
soren

*snorted coffee*

rick kappler
Guest
rick kappler

But somehow the people driving a car and illegally using the bike lanes on SW Beaverton-Hillsdale Highway as turn lanes are not activities that should be frequently addressed?

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

If they get enough complaints, they’ll probably show up. That’s how these things work, for better or worse.

TonyT
Subscriber
TonyT

If that were true, they’d have done an enforcement on my neighborhood Greenway for the crazy high-speed drivers in the morning and diverter violations in the evening. Too many enforcement requests to count from me and my neighbors over the last 10 years. But we aren’t Ladd’$ Addition.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

You claim your wheel squeaked louder, and got no grease. How do you know this is true?

TonyT
Subscriber
TonyT

I don’t know that we squeaked louder, but I do know that we got no grease. Ultimately I don’t think it’s the loudness of the squeaking so much as who is doing the squeaking and what they’re squeaking about. Ladd’s has gotten multiple enforcements over the last 10 plus years during which we’ve gotten none, despite our contacting 823-SAFE dozens of times including reaching out in other ways. It seems apparent to me that the fact that Ladd’s is full of well-heeled folks and that the targets of their ire are people on bikes matters more than the actual threat to life and limb.

I will never forget that PPB did an enforcement at Ladd’s a week after Brett Jarolimek got right hooked & killed at Greeley and Interstate. Around the same time they were doing that enforcement, another rider got right hooked at the same Greeley/Interstate intersection.

A week ago there was right hook at Hawthorne and 7th and I half-joked that PPB would probably run a stop sign enforcement in Ladd’s. A week later and here we are.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

Ladd’s hasn’t “got” enforcements, enforcements were done in Ladd’s. You make it sound as if most people there think enforcing the stop sign is more important than doing something that will save lives. According to your sterotypes, residents there are some of the most callous and crude people in the city.

Your beef should be with Wheeler and the police, not with a group of people you enjoy demonizing for reasons that are unclear to me.

TonyT
Subscriber
TonyT

You sound nice.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

Thanks… I am. It’s why I try not to stereotype and say mean things about people.

soren
Guest
soren

I have a beef with the antisocial behavior of a small number of people who cause our incredibly limited enforcement budget to be used to harass people cycling* while pedestrians literally die on nearby arterial roads.

*who are a benefit to the health and wellbeing of this city

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

I totally agree — this enforcement action is a distraction from more important issues, and we should not let our priorities be set by antisocial people.

Bald One
Guest
Bald One

I think it’s pretty obvious that, in the absence of a pedestrian fatality, traffic enforcement in neighborhoods (anywhere?) in Portland are purely COMPLAINT DRIVEN. Whenever you have a complaint driven process with limited resource available, PPB will have to “decide” where to “allocate” their enforcement resources. Whenever you have this type of decision allocation process, it will be subject to some level of bias. I am sure some allocations of traffic enforcement are not made with bias, but bias must certainly must happen, often.

I know the city bureaus really respond to having more than simply a gaggle of independent citizens make the same complaint (or one person repeatedly) – much more weight is given if the complaint is echoed by the neighborhood association, by the local school, by the business association, or if a city employee insider or local dignitary (higher up in the bureau or city hall) puts their thumb on the scale and makes an additional complaint or drops a line to the PPB. Unfortunately, I am not so sure the complaint-response enforcement calculus at PPB traffic division is heavily data driven (unless one data point is a ped fatality).

Perhaps if everyone reading this blog banded together and made the same complaint about the same location it would tip the scale in favor of traffic enforcement. We could do a new one each week.

Obviously, the video-taping incident is clearly a whole new level of bias and counter-bias insurance down there at PPB. Quite ridiculous. Would be nice if they spent some time video-taping cars running stop signs and turning without looking both directions – LOL.

9watts
Subscriber

From one of the earlier topics (2012) here on this subject:
“Sgt. Fort said the Ladd Circle issues is more about livability than safety.”

billyjo
Guest
billyjo

The same argument could easily be made that Portland drives cars and not bikes. fudge what they want, we need more cars.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

Actually, it’s a very good equivalent. Saying “fudge their livability, just do it!” cuts both ways. It’s hard to dispense with the niceties of pubic input and responsiveness on some projects/efforts while insisting on them on others. In general, being responsive to the public is the safer route.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

If you are saying we shouldn’t do enforcement on Ladd Circle, I would completely agree. If you are saying we shouldn’t listen to the public when making decisions in cases where your (or my) priorities differ, I would vociferously disagree.

Maybe this small annoyance is a worthwhile price to pay to preserve our voice for when we need it.

Middle of the Road Guy
Guest
Middle of the Road Guy

Why are folks in Ladd’s addition “privileged”?

9watts
Subscriber

Hello, Kitty wrote:
“If you are saying we shouldn’t listen to the public when making decisions in cases where your (or my) priorities differ, I would vociferously disagree.”

But why so binary? Why ignore the obvious, which is that some complaints are deserving and some are not. Our public servants can surely trouble themselves to differentiate among the frivolous and serious, recognize the limited resources and distribute them not according to who squeaks the loudest but where the fires are burning, so to speak.

9watts
Subscriber

MotRG asks: “Why are folks in Ladd’s addition “privileged”?”

Well, one way to measure of their privilege are the regular installments of police details summoned for their livability challenges while other, less privileged, neighborhoods get nothing, or worse, have their unarmed children shot dead by those same cops, for being the wrong skin color.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

>>> But why so binary? <<<

I want rapid implementation of things I support, and lots of process for things I don't. Let me decide which things are fires and which are squeaks. Can we agree on that, at least?

peter hass
Guest
peter hass

A couple of years ago the police were doing a morning sting operation at Ladd’s circle as well as up the road at the intersection of Clinton and 21st…another popular roll through. Just a heads up.

Jeff
Guest
Jeff

Normalize this roundabout NOW. Roundabouts with stop signs are way out of the norm. Move the bus stops to better spots (off the circle) and get rid of the stop signs.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

It’s not a roundabout; it’s a traffic circle.

Q
Guest
Q

After reading many of your comments on this blog, it’s not clear what you’re for or against aside from disagreeing with just about any statement anyone makes. It causes your point of view to come across as meandering at best, but more likely that you’re just passively confrontational and have too much time on your hands.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

In this context, I am for more traffic enforcement, and opposed to doing it at Ladd Circle. I am opposed to sweeping generalizations about groups of people, and the tone of overwrought hand-wringing over what amounts to an occasional annoyance. I am also, perhaps surprisingly, for Soren’s comment about enforcement on Powell, Hawthorne, and Belmont.

More generally, I am for beer, and against herbal tea.

SERider
Guest
SERider

“the tone of overwrought hand-wringing over what amounts to an occasional annoyance.”

Amen.
It’s a stop sign. It honestly will take you an extra 2-5 seconds to get back up to speed. If you want the Idaho Stop Law, that’s great, get it enacted. Until then, it’s a stop sign. It’s really not that much burden to just obey the sign. And all that is even assuming there is ANY enforcement, which we all know is incredibly scarce in PDX.

Matt S.
Guest
Matt S.

Ebikes, overcome that initial moment of acceleration with a little assistance. I argue Ebikes can actually help people become more compliant with the law. Stoping at 20 stop signs on your way to work sucks with a conventional bike, but no problem on an ebike.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

Cars have that same advantage, and drivers still have a hard time actually stopping. I think it’s psychology as much as physics.

Dan A
Subscriber
Dan A

Do you actually come to a full stop at every stop sign every time you ride? If so, I would assume that you don’t ride the same streets very often, or that you yourself don’t ride that frequently. I know full well which stop signs on my route require full compliance at which times of day, and which ones don’t. In many cases, coming to a complete foot-down stop is overkill.

SERider
Guest
SERider

Pretty much every stop sign. Yes. I mainly ride streets that have few stop signs, so it’s not much hassle for me.

And anyone posting here knows that Ladd’s has been an issue is the past and still is today. So if you prioritize your stop signs, at least put Ladd’s high up your list.

Dan A
Subscriber
Dan A

Pretty much? Sounds hypocritical.

mark smith
Guest
mark smith

The Absolute hilarity that we as educated people in this day and age are actually spending time and money (through police) to enforce red metal signs in this round about, just goes to show how backwards things have gotten. Let’s hope this is a catalyst for change.

Buzz
Guest
Buzz

Yet not a single fatality, let alone any serious traffic-related injuries, in Ladd’s circle…I saw that cop sitting there last week and wondered what he was doing…I guess the pay is the same for whatever…and they don’t ever seem to spend the same amount of time or resources clamping down on the open-air bicycle chop-shops all over town, go figure.

Dan A
Subscriber
Dan A

I want to know why the NE Glisan and 134th crosswalk enforcement mission only lasted 90 minutes. Sounds like it was effective, so why not stay there all day? I mean, you could save actual lives with crosswalk enforcement, but maybe it’s easier to chase down those slow-rollers at Ladd’s instead.

paikiala
Guest
paikiala

All the traffic division at one location in the city all day long?

Dan A
Subscriber
Dan A

It takes the entire traffic division to enforce the law at a single crosswalk? In a city with 650,000 residents? It seems you’ve discovered the problem.

Matt S.
Guest
Matt S.

Jo Ann Hardesty mentioned in her campaign that she wanted to perform a time audit on how police officers spend their time. Maybe she can start here… $40 to $60 an hour for traffic police.

q
Guest
q

I’m glad you pointed that out. And at least the “all day long” is hypothetical. It’s not all all reassuring to realize that if paikiala is correct, then the City’s entire traffic division was at this Glisan crosswalk for 90 minutes, non-hypothetically. That certainly IS a problem, as you said.

Doug Klotz
Guest
Doug Klotz

I think there are only 4 traffic officers on patrol in the entire city, at any one time.

Dan A
Subscriber
Dan A

Yeah, I know. Well, good thing we’ve got Ladd’s covered.

soren
Guest
soren

And why not?
Instead of hanging out and drinking mochas at the courthouse while they wait to testify against “dangerous” stop sign rollers, Portland’s finest could target a new crosswalk every day.

I would be happy to sign up as a volunteer for these actions. I’ll even wear one those dayglo hi-viz vests that PBOT uses to shame people for daring to walk in their neighborhood while wearing everyday clothing.

Middle of the Road Guy
Guest
Middle of the Road Guy

What percentage of cops drink Mochas?

Pat Franz
Guest
Pat Franz

I have to agree there is a mild problem at the circle. While stopping at the stop signs *might* improve safety, it seems to me the bigger issue is that people don’t know what to do to make a traffic circle safe, and they kind of do whatever they want.

I would rather see an experiment where signs were added to explain how to cooperate and be safe in a traffic circle. “Yield to traffic in the circle” and “Look both ways for pedestrians” and “Signal your exit” are the safe and efficient behaviors you want. So, tell people that. The current “STOP, then do whatever” isn’t safe or efficient behavior.

The sidewalk sight lines are pretty good around most of the circle, but trimming some shrubbery in a couple places would help too.

Buzz
Guest
Buzz

‘Not knowing what to do’ makes everyone slow down, it’s actually not a bad thing…but, you know, driver’s test and all, it’s not that hard to figure out and navigate safely either way.

Q
Guest
Q

Actually, ‘Not knowing what to do’ makes everyone mash the gas harder then throw up their hands in confusion when the road ahead isn’t straight, wide, and free of other users. This is the problem.

9watts
Subscriber

Interesting statement. Unless you have any evidence to support this curious notion I’m going to side with Hans Monderman, who found exactly the opposite and got quite far over the course of his life and career proposing changes to designing traffic interactions based on this insight. You might want to look him up.

Bald One
Guest
Bald One

Sounds like you might work as a traffic engineer at PBOT.

oldguyluvs2ride
Guest
oldguyluvs2ride

I have biked and walked and driven through Ladd’s thousands of times – the vast majority on a bike. This is a ridiculous waste of resources. These stop signs should be yield signs as the visibility here is great. If the city wants to improve our slim chances of attaining Vision Zero, they should do an enforcement for crosswalk and speeding violations on Hawthorne, Lincoln/Harrison, Division, et al. There is no way that the majority of automobile operators are driving anywhere close to 20 MPH between SE 30th and SE 50th on Hawthorne. Try crossing at an unmarked crosswalk between 30th and 34th or between 42nd and 50th. You better be prepared to jump out of the way.

RH
Guest
RH

Can someone remind me why this isn’t treated like a normal roundabout like other cities? Why is there a stop sign in the first place?

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

Because it is a traffic circle, not a roundabout. I don’t know enough about the differences to explain them here, but an engineer probably could.

chris m
Guest
chris m

The key difference is that roundabouts have the feeder streets curved to facilitate merging into the roundabout where a traffic circle has all the feeder streets intersect at a “T” to the circle so you have to stop and make a 90 degree turn to enter the circle.

SD
Guest
SD

It is 90 degrees if you are driving a car.
So traffic circle for cars, roundabout for bikes.
Problem solved.

paikiala
Guest
paikiala

Roundabouts have YIELD on entry. Roundabouts require you to slow down to enter, instead of the sweeping entries. Roundabouts have crosswalks set back at least one car length from the yield line so the tasks of looking for pedestrians and looking for approaching drivers is separated.
Roundabouts are usually sized to achieve 15-20 mph circulating speeds. Roundabouts don’t have pedestrian attractions in the middle.

soren
Guest
soren

And why not?

Instead of hanging out and drinking mochas at the courthouse while they wait to testify against “dangerous” stop sign rollers, Portland’s finest could target a new crosswalk every day.

I would be happy to sign up as a volunteer for these actions. I’ll even wear one those dayglo hi-viz vests that PBOT uses to shame people for daring to walk in their neighborhood while wearing everyday clothing.

Bald One
Guest
Bald One

Are you sure it’s not a circular park with a driveway around it?

David Hampsten
Guest

Ladd’s Circle isn’t really a roundabout or a rotary. Yes, it’s big and round, but it wasn’t designed for cars, it was designed for slow-moving horses and buggies and pedestrians. The city still hasn’t taken the trouble to redesign (and rebuild) the circle into a proper roundabout or rotary.

Actually, there’s a lot of variation in roundabout design, even here on the East Coast. Most of ours tend to be low-volume intersections like Ladd’s Circle, with either yield signs and dashed lines or, as you suggest, no signs and lines at all. I’ve also seen busy at-speed rotaries such as Dupont Circle and Logan Circle in DC with signals and stop signs on the entering streets, and lots of paint everywhere. The roundabout in Portland at 39th & Glisan I believe has yield signs. I agree with an earlier comment that there are too many stop signs – what they really need are yield signs and a lot more paint.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

39th & Glisan has stop signs. It, like Ladd, is a traffic circle.

curly
Subscriber
curly

You mean Ceasar Chavez Blvd. & Glisan.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

Yes, there.

Chris I
Guest
Chris I

Ugh.

Doug Klotz
Subscriber

I call them “King Blvd.” and “Chavez”. Or we could go with “CEC”. In San Francisco I hear “C.Chav”.

Middle of the Road Guy
Guest
Middle of the Road Guy

You mean Cesar Chavez and Glisan?

Steve Scarich
Guest
Steve Scarich

Be careful what you wish for. It has been twenty years since I lived in that neighborhood and circled this spot, but my recollection is that it is attractive and quaint. Roundabouts, in my Bend experience (which is vast), tend to be frantic and very bicycle unfriendly.

Catie
Guest
Catie

Do we know what mechanism the Police are using to get these community complaints? Or what process they use to select where they do traffic enforcement? My hunch is that this is not being trickled up from the 823 Safe hotline and instead based off of direct phone calls or e-mails? I think this is an important part of the story. Lots of people send complaints to PBOT about being afraid to cross the street, and Portland Police should have a process to work through those.

Tim
Guest
Tim

A squeaky wheel is getting grease for a relative non-problem at Ladd Circle. Why can’t we use these tactics for real problems. Cyclists should start posting videos and sending complaints to the local police for the truly dangerous drivers and intersections.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

I think we could.

Dan A
Subscriber
Dan A

There are a whole bunch of them here: https://www.youtube.com/user/crazytraffic99/videos

Alex Reedin, now in Albuquerque, NM
Guest
Alex Reedin, now in Albuquerque, NM

It’s very disappointing that the PPB uses Vision Zero as part of their press release to justify this action. As many commenters above have pointed out, this is not a location where limited police enforcement is best directed in order to save lives. It would be less smarmy / misleading if the PPB PR department just left that bit out when announcing actions that are prioritized based on values other than Vision Zero. It’s OK, the public understands that there are still other important things out there other than Vision Zero, you can just chalk this one up to livability and responsive government and leave it at that.

Including Vision Zero in this press release feeds a public perception that the PPB is Vision Zero-washing their actions and not really taking the Vision Zero initiative seriously.

Middle of The Road Guy
Guest
Middle of The Road Guy

Or that is simply your interpretation of it. Other people might not view it that way.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

Don’t take it seriously, or just don’t understand what it is. Very well stated.

Steve Scarich
Guest
Steve Scarich

I walk everywhere in Bend, because bicycling is too dangerous in the Downtown core. The single biggest risk, by far, is crossing in front of a right turning car. I would guess that maybe 25% actually look for peds. They are only concerned about pulling out as quickly as possible to beat traffic coming from their left. Most of the time they pull out to effectively block my marked or unmarked crossing. I always make eye contact and get acknowledgement before I cross in front of them. I would say that I have a close call every other day or so. A non-nimble or disabled ped does not stand a chance. I have no solution, because the driving agressiveness is so engrained in our populous now. Local cops have issued tickets (OK once) after one of my hundreds of close calls, but there is virtually no traffic enforcement over here. It is very low on the City Council’s list of funding priorities. As a consequence, almost everyone drives here, even for short errands.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

Maybe a good response would be a VisionZero protest in Ladd Circle while the police are there.

soren
Guest
soren

Let’s also recall that a very angry Ladd’s Addition resident attempted to severely injure someone by stringing up a trip wire along the Neighborhood Greenway that enters the circle.

I just biked through Ladd’s Addition around 1am. Someone had set up clear tape like a trip wire across the road. Another biker and I stopped to dismantle it, assuming it was kids playing a prank and complaining about how dangerous it would be for someone on a bike, but not for cars. As we biked away, we heard a man’s voice calling from the bushes in Ladd’s Circle, “Thanks for stopping!”

http://blog.oregonlive.com/commuting/2010/07/police_investigating_bicycle_t.html

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

So did someone on the I-205 bike corridor, using string rather than clear tape.

It’s reprehensible and inexcusable behavior. There are sick people everywhere.

Middle of the Road Guy
Guest
Middle of the Road Guy

But we should totally demonize the nearby community by the actions of individuals 🙂

Mike
Guest
Mike

Why should they install more stop signs if you argue they shouldn’t enforce stopping at the signs already erected? Or is your argument that they should only enforce stopping at the signs you deem to be important (ie- lower income neighborhoods)?

Richard
Guest
Richard

This only confirms to me that traffic law adherence is a form of bike advocacy. We never know which intersection or traffic circle will amass complaints and subsequent misallocation of resources. (And I can absolutely see residents filing these complaints, regardless of larger-perspective issues plaguing the city.) I agree that literally any intersection downtown, for example, would merit this degree of enforcement more. I would cry tears of gratitude if SW 14th and Everett got some attention. But I also understand the demand created at Ladd’s, and I can’t help but wonder if city priorities would be straighter if everyone just stopped at the stop sign — perhaps, while advocating to remove them in other ways.

Dan A
Subscriber
Dan A

“if everyone just stopped at the stop sign”

Add it to the docket for discussion at the weekly All-Powerful Bike Lobby meeting.

q
Guest
q

Yes, if the City would contact one of the Bicycling Community spokesmen, he could talk to the Bicycling Community Leaders, who could spread the word to the Bicycling Community.

Buzz
Guest
Buzz

They use their own Bicycle Advisory Committee for this, with few exceptions it is basically a rubber-stamp for PBOT’s engineering fantasies, and won’t take on thorny issues like the completely unnecessary Ladd’s Addition cyclist stop sign stings, no doubt instigated by a few irritated residents of the neighborhood who complain loudly and regularly to the city until they get their way.

JR
Guest
JR

PPB should be using that map application to target enforcement rather than complaints at an inappropriately signed traffic circle.

TonyT
Subscriber
TonyT

A decade of requesting speed enforcement due to people operating multi-thousand pound vehicles at 2x the legal limit on my neighborhood Greenway (a block from a school) and we’ve gotten nothing. Let’s not kid ourselves, there are two things at work here: Ladd’s Addition has MONEY and PPB would much rather target people on bikes. This is about dominance, not safety.

Yes, people shouldn’t be jerks and should exercise more care and yield to people walking. Does what’s happening in Ladd’s even remotely rise to a priority given where and how people are dying in Portland? No. Enforcement is a joke in Portland.

paikiala
Guest
paikiala

What street?
50 in a 25, or 40 in a 20?

q
Guest
q

Does it matter? Both sound horrible.

paikiala
Guest
paikiala

fact checking. Recorded speeds in Portland can be looked up. Opinion is not fact.

q
Guest
q

I have no idea what your point is. Someone commented that people were driving “2x the legal limit” on a street in his neighborhood. He was making a general statement–it doesn’t make any real difference whether they’re going EXACTLY twice the limit, or whether they’re going 1.9 times the limit on a 20 mph street or 2.1 times the limit on a 25 mph street.

And what are “recorded speeds” anyway? How do I look up a “recorded speed”?

And why the combative “Opinion is not fact”?

paikiala
Guest
paikiala

humans are notoriously bad at judging speed of moving vehicles and often exaggerate, particularly when anonymous, to gain sympathy. I doubt the claims, and they can be verified independent of the statements made.

q
Guest
q

Again, so what? I see a fine comment from someone that states that his neighborhood has been requesting speed enforcement for years (he said “a decade” but I’m not hung up on whether it’s been exactly 10 years) because people have been speeding (he said “2x the legal limit” but again it doesn’t really matter since going 50% or even less over the limit can be dangerous on some streets) and they’ve “gotten nothing”.

He then points out that the City instead is targeting bikes in Ladd’s Addition, which has happened apparently several times in the period his neighborhood has gotten nothing.

That’s a powerful observation that points out a significant problem with the City’s enforcement choices. And several other people have commented that other locations with conditions much more dangerous than Ladd’s have also not received much enforcement attention.

Yet your response is to totally ignore the commenter’s point, and instead to imply the commenter is bad at judging speed, and may be exaggerating in order to gain sympathy!

Then you say vehicle speeds can be verified, similarly to your earlier comment, “Recorded speeds in Portland can be looked up”. But when I asked you what “recorded speeds” are, and how they can be looked up, and you didn’t answer.

9watts
Subscriber

Several of us have been attempting to engage Monsieur paikiala on matters such as these (chiefly his rhetorical style and refusal to engage in a reasonable back and forth) for nearly a decade, and with as little to show for it as you.

paikiala
Guest
paikiala

You can’t look up anything if the person posting is unwilling to share the location, todays spoon feeding: https://www.portlandmaps.com/ enter an address, look up city data.

paikiala
Guest
paikiala

If you don’t think facts are important, feel free to live your life that way. Enforcement at Ladd circle is wasteful and inequitable. Maybe some people’s safety is more important to you than others? Complaining in this echo chamber doesn’t change what the PPB chooses to enforce or City Council chooses to fund.

9watts
Subscriber

“f you don’t think facts are important, feel free to live your life that way. ”

And what prompted that?

Since we’ve run out of indentations can you clarify to whom or to what statement you are responding?

soren
Guest
soren

i know who you are irl and i know who many other “anonymous” commenters are irl. consequently, i also know that many of us do, in fact, advocate directly with city commissioners, pbot, and the ppb. and, for me, one of the most useful parts of the bike portland comments section is being able to workshop effective arguments.

andy
Guest
andy

I have only seen traffic circles with stop signs in america. Everywhere else I have been in the world you yield to those on your left. Doubtful how this sting is going to save lives or change behavior.

paikiala
Guest
paikiala

Unless they are signalized traffic circles, what we call rotaries.
So, never been to UK or AU (yield to approach from the right)?
Not a Modern Roundabout:
https://supernet.isenberg.umass.edu/visuals/FOMgt341-F10/Rotaries%20vs%20Roundabouts.pdf
Fort Worth, TX (size = speed, tangent entries): https://goo.gl/maps/3aUuzSdqPE12
Memorial Circle, Arlington, VA (size, yield in the circular roadway): https://goo.gl/maps/K7tC813Rj8n
Portsmouth, NH (size = speed, tangent entries): https://goo.gl/maps/P83B41vsvD2
Tallmadge, OH (size = speed, park in middle): https://goo.gl/maps/k8KVcyD8Uj32
Goderich, ON (size = speed, building in middle, crosswalks across circle): https://goo.gl/maps/YzFxmi8JpAk
Joint Base McGuire, NJ: https://goo.gl/maps/gxe6z627gxL2
Pinehurst, NC (size, sweeping entries): https://goo.gl/maps/16PMk3qSBvF2
Lakehurst, NJ (size, sweeping entries): https://goo.gl/maps/YVcLX8BBQJr
Dupont Circle, DC (size, circle crosswalks, signals) : https://goo.gl/maps/on3i4bqmr7u
Hopewell Township, NJ (size, circle yields to entering traffic): https://goo.gl/maps/74oF8B7GjnB2
Hoosier Park Casino (size, striping): https://goo.gl/maps/WzAfAbtGPiE2
UK (size, signals): https://www.videoblocks.com/video/aerial-flying-above-huge-roundabout-full-of-cars-and-trucks-whd27l9/
Angola, IN (sweeping entry, park in middle): https://goo.gl/maps/NGpbNdxBotN2
Sarasota, FL (stop signs, park in middle, parking in circle, size): https://goo.gl/maps/KgbPQGj4heS2
Portland, OR (stop signs, sweeping entries, circular roadway crown, bus stops in circle): https://goo.gl/maps/7dKZpCiyj2J2
Carrier Circle, Syracuse, NY (too large): https://goo.gl/maps/6ERCsFRrTYM2
S 88th St and Mills Civic Pkwy, Des Moines, IA (stop signs, sweeping entry, no truck apron or splitter islands, cemetery in circle): https://goo.gl/maps/Zjfr7wtXveL2
Canoe Hill and Laurel, New Canaan, CT (too small): https://goo.gl/maps/CVp168omGVz
Golf, Wolf and Broadway, Chicago, IL (Cumberland Circle, stop signs, planned for rebuild): https://goo.gl/maps/id1B2WDDWRK2
http://hbmengineering.com/blog/transportation-design/cumberland-circle-roundabout/
Young Circle, Hollywood, FL (size, park in middle, sweeping entries, signals): https://goo.gl/maps/MkMyuw5r4Q12
Paterson, NJ (circulating traffic yields to entering; no entry deflection): https://goo.gl/maps/UYWxRSfLzdv
Murfreesboro, AR (parking inside, building in circle, sweeping entries: https://goo.gl/maps/F2tjsomB5f72
Amity, AR (parking inside, park in circle, sweeping entries: https://goo.gl/maps/NmAinfdWDZs
Cape Cod, MA (sweeping entries, no traffic control): https://goo.gl/maps/XGTjca94PFA2
Independence, MO (large diameter, sweeping entries): https://goo.gl/maps/2gMET45Dc532

At Roundabouts, traffic in the circle has the right of way
Southold, NY: https://goo.gl/maps/21MsC6C2Ziy
Kansas City, MO: https://goo.gl/maps/7MzBhiMeHMo
Font Blvd, San Francisco traffic circles: https://goo.gl/maps/iduyDhLugtM2
Weatherford, TX: https://goo.gl/maps/MFkHSjv9ybt

Signals:
Dupont Circle, DC: https://goo.gl/maps/on3i4bqmr7u
Washington Circle, DC: https://goo.gl/maps/ummX2MrFozv
Bangkok: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ePmzGziqk4
Weatherford, TX: https://goo.gl/maps/MFkHSjv9ybt

Two way in circular road:
Winnipeg, ON: https://goo.gl/maps/zsK8Yhc81B32
Oldham, UK: https://goo.gl/maps/88LRpAebeq62

David Hampsten
Guest

Nice list. The power point is very helpful. Thank you for sending this out!

Ted Buehler
Guest
Ted Buehler

Paik gets the “best researched post of the week” award.

Nice collection.

Ted Buehler

CaptainKarma
Guest
CaptainKarma

Naked Bike Ride and Thursday Night Ride should roll through here.

soren
Guest
soren

10 months ago Wes W. Hatton was hit and killed while attempting to cross inner SE Belmont in a marked crosswalk.

1 year and a few months ago Patrick Moore was hit and killed while attempting cross inner SE Powell near SE 50th.

2 years and several months ago Fallon Smart (age 15) was hit and killed while attempting to cross inner SE Hawthorne in a marked crosswalk.

If PBOT and the Portland Police Bureau were genuinely concerned about “traffic safety” in inner SE Portland their enforcement actions would target Belmont, Powell, and Hawthorne, not the Ladd’s circle.

#ZeroVision

paikiala
Guest
paikiala

43rd at Hawthorne was not marked.
https://goo.gl/maps/VQhe9ziFLQx

q
Guest
q

That’s a remarkably unimportant observation.

I’d love to see you respond to the main point–why is the City is doing a sting in an area that’s remarkably safe, but not in several locations nearby where there’ve actual deaths? So what if the crossing one was killed in was marked or not?

9watts
Subscriber

Hear hear.

paikiala
Guest
paikiala

PBOT is not PPB. The tendency to lump all bureaus together as the ‘guvment is as valid as calling all people drive bad or all cyclist bad.

9watts
Subscriber

Please explain why this is a distinction worth posting several comments about. Why should we observe this difference? What does it matter? I’m genuinely curious.

And while you are at it, could you speak to the many differences between how a crosswalk enforcement and a sting in Ladd’s are prosecuted?

q
Guest
q

Again, your comment is completely mystifying and irrelevant.

I didn’t mention PBOT at all. I used “City” specifically because it is 100% accurate. Are you unhappy because using “City” leaves the possibility open that PBOT has some involvement in decisions about where traffic enforcement operations happen, so that PBOT can’t let the police take all the blame?

If PBOT DOES have some involvement, then why are you unhappy with my using “City”?

If PBOT DOES NOT have any involvement in choosing where traffic enforcement operations occur, then we all have an even greater problem, because of course the Police and Transportation bureaus should be coordinating. But again, even if PBOT wasn’t involved at all, that doesn’t mean there was any problem with my using “City”, and more than if I’d used “PPB” without specifying that it was the traffic division and not gang enforcement or whatever.

And most importantly, once AGAIN you’re STILL not responding to the main point. Instead you’re arguing about an irrelevant technicality.

q
Guest
q

I also think you’re out of line with your “guvment” comment. Please don’t imply that I (or anyone else commenting here) is a backwards bumpkin. And if you think I really am, come out and say it directly–don’t hide behind passive, “the tendency” language.

Buzz
Guest
Buzz

Fallon’s killer was driving like 50 MPH in the center turn lane and disappeared back to the Middle East prior to trial; you have no point, so stop trying to sound like you are making one.

Lenny Anderson
Guest
Lenny Anderson

Seems Portland has trouble with traffic circles, round-abouts or whatever you want to call them. Maybe its time to move Joan, tear out the roses and just run streets straight through, so traffic can keep moving without having to slow or stop! Or maybe an underpass! What a waste of police resources!
Seriously, when I was riding a lot, I followed just three rules: don’t get hit, don’t be a jerk, and don’t lose momentum. Sometimes I stopped as directed, but often as not #3 overruled #1.

paikiala
Guest
paikiala

People using the road make mistakes (like running stop signs and red lights), always have and always will. Crashes will always be with us, but they need not result in fatalities or serious injury.

Modern roundabouts are the safest form of intersection in the world – the intersection type with the lowest risk of fatal or serious injury crashes – (much more so than comparable signals). Modern roundabouts require a change in speed and alter the geometry of one of the most dangerous parts of the system – intersections.

The reduction in speed to about 20 mph and sideswipe geometry mean that, when a crash does happen at a modern roundabout, you usually need a tow truck, not an ambulance. Visit the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety for modern roundabout FAQs and safety facts. Roundabouts are one of several proven road safety features (FHWA).
The life saved may be your own.
https://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/provencountermeasures/roundabouts/
https://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/intersection/innovative/roundabouts/

But they’re not cheap.

Dave
Guest
Dave

Replace those darn stop signs with yield signs and perhaps some mild traffic calming (lane/intersection narrowing) at Ladd’s and the ‘conflict’ could go away. Meanwhile, on my North Portland street, with recently reduced posted speed from 30mph to 25mph, some drivers continue to regularly go twice as fast (or more) with numerous documented crashes and destroyed street-parked cars, and there is ZERO traffic enforcement. No traffic enforcement in the three years I’ve lived here regardless of how many times I call the Help line.

paikiala
Guest
paikiala

What street?
How did you determine speed?

BTW, reducing traffic control does not typically reduce conflict. Changing to yield signs would reduce stop sign violations and all the same crossing pathways would still exist.

Buzz
Guest
Buzz

You’re getting like zero recommends, maybe you should stop defending undefendable policies and actions on the part of the city?

Doug Klotz
Subscriber

Hello, Kitty
Which neighborhood meetings have people been vociferously complaining at? Surely that would be in the minutes. Where in the media has this “vocal minority” been complaining (and do you have evidence it is enough people to constitute a “minority” and not a lone crank or two?)You’ve made two easily verifiable assertions of fact (along with your unverifiable ones). I’d love to see your evidence.Recommended 1

The HAND neighborhood (covers Ladds) has two new board members who joined specifically to oppose the new diverters on SE Harrison, so that could be one source of complaints.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

Has HAND been hearing vociferous complaints about cyclists in Ladd’s? If so, it would probably be in their minutes.

David Hampsten
Guest

They’ve got it all in HAND.

Buzz
Guest
Buzz

HAND neighborhood board is not necessarily pro-cyclist, but I would suspect complaints are coming from private citizens and not HAND itself.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

The (unsubstantiated) accusation was “a minority Ladd’s Addition residents have vociferously complained about the volume of bike traffic in NA meetings”. So that would be residents, not the board itself.

Dave
Guest
Dave

North Peninsular and the power of observation. I would invite you to sit back and watch the action next time you’re in the neighborhood. I am not exaggerating when I say it’s common to see people driving twice or more than the posted speed.

Ladd’s is a perfect candidate to consider something other than stop signs – with some traffic calming measures, as I mentioned. The ‘traffic calming’ neighborhood stop sign, loved by traffic engineers of yesteryear, hasn’t shown to reduce conflicts or crashes. There are better design options that can solve those issues.

paikiala
Guest
paikiala

N Peninsular at Terry:
85% of drivers were going 32 mph or less in the 30 mph zone in 2015. Under 3% of the 5300 daily drivers were going more than 10 mph over the posted.
3% is not common, it’s rare. Twice the posted is even more so.

Stop signs reduce specific kinds of crashes and increase others, no question.

ebiker32
Guest
ebiker32

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor)
Good question Catie. My hunch is they hear from all over… As folks in this neighborhood are very good, well-versed at pulling the levers of power. Would not be surprised if people have Engstrom’s number on their speed dial.There is a process in place. This is a very well-known spot for lack of compliance. PPB knows this. They get complaints and — instead of settling them directly with the complainers — they have made a decision to go public. I’m calling Engstrom today to talk more about it. From a voicemail he left yesterday it sounds like his intention was simply to raise awareness of the issue. Unfortunately mistakes have been made about how the information was presented … Suffice it to say the PPB could use some PR/comms training.Recommended 2

What keeps all the commenters here from organizing and beginning the change they want to see? I see about 190 comments being left on this topic. Are these commenters ready to do something? Talk has never been cheaper.

Dan A
Subscriber
Dan A

We have requested enforcement actions in my neighborhood, and received it shortly afterwards. But I live in Washington County.

Alex Reedin, now in Albuquerque, NM
Guest
Alex Reedin, now in Albuquerque, NM

I dunno, but they should join BikeLoudPDX as an organizing vehicle!

q
Guest
q

Why are you assuming commenters here are not doing that? From what I know, at least some commenters here are some of the most active, involved people on these issues. Commenting here doesn’t mean someone isn’t doing anything else. In fact, it’s a great way of informing other people who may be likely to join your cause, and getting info that might help your own.

bendite
Guest
bendite

It’s not a roundabout if there’s a stop sign.

Ted Buehler
Guest
Ted Buehler

Folks,

Lesson in Advocacy 101.

If you want to get something changed.
– get photo or video evidence. Post it.
– make repeated complaints
– get your neighbors to also make repeated complaints

It’s not that hard…

You might not agree with the stance that the neighborhood activists are taking, but that shouldn’t keep you from taking note of the excellent example of civic involvement here by the Ladds Circle neighbors, in our less-than-perfect world.

Ted Buehler

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

Does anyone know if it’s the traffic patrol running this enforcement action, or the standard-issue PPB?

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

And has anyone actually seen the police there?