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Weekly News Roundup: Local Focus, Oslo’s big zero, and more

Posted by on January 8th, 2020 at 5:29 am


(Note: This is your Monday Roundup for the week. It’s a few days late because, well, I’m still in Mexico on vacation at the moment so I haven’t been on a regular work schedule. Back in the office Thursday!)

This week’s roundup is brought to you by Endurance Physical Therapy + Bike Fit Studio (2323 N Williams Ave) who reminds us that it’s the perfect time of year to work out those kinks in your form.

Here are the most noteworthy items the BikePortland community has come across in the past week or so…

Local Focus

ODOT hires: As expected, Oregon DOT has made major hires for three new offices. One of them, the Office of Urban Mobility and Mega Project Delivery, will be tasked with completing the I-5 Rose Quarter Improvement Project, the I-205 and Abernethy Bridge Project, and “active development of a tolling and congestion pricing program to meet the region’s immediate needs.” Its Director is Brendan Finn, a former chief of staff for Portland City Commissioner Dan Saltzman, one-time City Council candidate, and current transportation policy advisor to Governor Kate Brown. Finn starts March 1st.

What’s wrong on Hogan Ave? Two young people have been killed in just two weeks within a block of each other on SE Hogan Road in Gresham. On December 24th 17-year-old Jayden Auberry died in a collision while biking at SE 4th and Hogan. Then on Monday, 11-year Luis Medina was killed by a drunk driver who ran a red light at SE 5th and Hogan.

I-5 Rose Quarter update: After reporting that the I-5 expansion at the Rose Quarter could cost up to $795 million, Willamette Week asked ODOT officials to explain how their initial estimate of $450 million was so off-base. Oh, and OTC Chair Robert Van Brocklin knew about — yet never disclosed — the higher cost estimate weeks before a major meeting on the project.

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3 feet law in WA: Our neighbors to the north and perennially-ranked #1 bike-friendly state of Washington, now have a much more effective passing law in the books. It’s better than Oregon’s because it applies to all vulnerable road users and includes a stipulation that drivers must move one lane over when there are two or more lanes in the same direction.

Another city ponders carfree future: The old city of York in the U.K. says public opinion about climate change is one reason they’ve proposed to eliminate “non-essential” car use in their central city.

Bike more this year: If you need inspiration to put more miles on your bike in 2020, don’t miss Barb Chamberlain’s great list of ways to challenge yourself.

E-bikes FTW: I don’t think we talk enough about the fact that electric bikes have the potential to have a greater impact on our city’s mobility challenges than just about anything else — if only we’d give riders the space they need.

More lanes = more traffic: New York spent $4 billion on the Tappan Zee Bridge, and the new lanes have — surprise surprise! — attracted even more traffic!

Distracted lawmaking: Remember that highly publicized “distracted walking” law in Honolulu that went into effect two years ago? 232 people have been cited so far but it hasn’t made an impact on fatalities.

Language matters: Because you know we love this topic, here’s the latest “crash not accident” story.

Vision Zero in NYC: The NY Times takes a closer look at why the Big Apple is still failing to rein in traffic deaths.

Vision Zero in Oslo: The capital of Norway with a similar population to Portland had zero traffic deaths involving vulnerable road users in 2019. Zero. Key to their approach has been a major restriction of parking and auto use in their city center.

— 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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Al
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Al

There are several things wrong with that section of Hogan and I now feel guilty for not formally bringing this up with the city of Gresham.

One is that the light on 5th sees a high rate of red light crossings by drivers. Another is that while the speed limit doesn’t change south of Powell, for some reason drivers act like it does. The speed limit doesn’t actually change from 35 to 45 for at least another mile further south! The speed limit on Hogan between Division and Palmquist should actually be 30 due to the complex nature of Hogan on that stretch! Another is that there is a lot of pedestrian traffic here and for lack of sidewalks, people walk in the bike lanes. Another is that drivers swerve into the bike lanes to go around left turning traffic. I have personally witnessed very close near misses like this there both biking and driving that section.

Some of these have very simple solutions, like lowering the speed limit and enforcing it as well as adding red light cameras on 5th and Palmquist. Others, like building out the sidewalk infrastructure and perhaps putting in a center turn lane are more complicated.

D'Andre Muhammed
Guest
D'Andre Muhammed

I agree with your recommendations. Sounds like this driver was under the influence of drugs and decided to drive anyway.

Chris I
Guest
Chris I

Many people driving through Gresham are coming in from rural and exurban houses to the south. They drive very, very fast outside of the city. This leads to many continuing to drive fast north of Palmquist, when the road conditions change and you start to see more pedestrians. Riding around the fringes of Gresham can be very scary, especially during commuting hours.

John
Guest
John

In the More Lanes = More Traffic link for the added lanes on the Tappen Zee Bridge the article mentions the cost difference between taking the TZB vs the George Washington Bridge of $32 vs ~$100. There are other tolls involved when cutting through New York city and most people know to avoid the city if at all possible. So when one heads to upstate New York or New England the Tappen Zee is the way to go if you don’t want to pay more bridge and road tolls. So while adding more lanes did add more traffic, the traffic was there to begin with.

A few more comments:

The bridge toll for a car is currently $15 for any of the bridges/tunnels that cut through New York City. One doesn’t drive through the city unless there is a good reason to.
I recently visited the New York City area for a week. Transportation costs to make a round trip into the city are almost $30 per person irregardless of the method. If anything driving to use the Staten Island ferry works out to be the cheapest as the cost is then split between the occupants of the vehicle as the ferry ride is free. Sort of like going into Portland, Its cheaper for a family to drive in and use a smart park garage then to use public transit.

Avoiding tolls is a well known past time in the north east. You pay a toll when it saves you time, but if you’re going to sit in traffic anyway why pay a toll.

Fred
Guest
Fred

It’s weird that motor-vehicle users tally only the external costs, like tolls. Just driving your vehicle costs 55-60 cents per mile (fuel, maintenance, depreciation)! But drivers treat the vehicle like it is free to use.

What a wonderful magic trick.

chris
Guest
chris

Hogan/242nd/238th is the connector between i-84 and 26 for those going to Mt Hood or Bend. It would be better if there were a dedicated expressway connecting those two highways, but I know this idea will get no support here.

I would like the majority of surface streets to be optimized for pedestrians, cyclists and buses, as I don’t think the car should be the preferred mode for local transport. That said, this position is fully consistent with advocating a small number of expressways, highways and arterials optimized for cars travelling a longer distance.

Chris I
Guest
Chris I

Where would you put this expressway? I can’t think of a location in east Portland that would work without taking out hundreds and hundreds of homes and businesses.

We don’t need expressways, we need automated enforcement on every street. You don’t need to be able to drive up to Mt. Hood in under an hour. I work in Gresham, and I have coworkers who live up in Zig Zag and drive in every day. And yes, they speed on 26 and through east Portland every day.

chris
Guest
chris

Chris I
Where would you put this expressway? I can’t think of a location in east Portland that would work without taking out hundreds and hundreds of homes and businesses.We don’t need expressways, we need automated enforcement on every street. You don’t need to be able to drive up to Mt. Hood in under an hour. I work in Gresham, and I have coworkers who live up in Zig Zag and drive in every day. And yes, they speed on 26 and through east Portland every day.Recommended 0

I think the most feasible plan would be to upgrade 224 and 212, thus making unnecessary to connect to 26 across Gresham from 84. There is already a plan to extend the Sunrise Expressway to 176th, but I’d extend it all the way past Sandy before connecting it to 26. 212 is a dangerous rural two lane road that is already being used as a highway, despite the fact that it isn’t designed for that. I’d make it four lanes total, with a median barrier.

26 is an important route. A host of outdoor adventurers, mountain bikers, skiers, snowboarders, tourists, etc., use it, as well as people traveling between Portland and Bend. Bend is a significant metro area in our state. I think we need a connection to 26 that’s better than the urban arterial that is 238th/Hogan or the rural road that is 212. I don’t think the solutions that we’d recommend for central Portland (e.g. promoting walking, biking and transit) really apply here. Sure, more buses to Mt Hood and Bend would be good, but even they would be benefit from an upgraded road.

Carrie
Guest
Carrie

I have a vision of a train (light rail-type) from Portland to Sandy (or even Rhododendron) where you could then hook up with the Mt. Hood express. A train with no restrictions on bikes/snow gear, etc. I would LOVE to be able to mtn bike or bike tour or snowshoe near/on Mt. Hood without having to drive a car there (especially as our personal car is NOT remotely snow-capable, but I LOVE to snowshoe).

chris
Guest
chris

Not opposed to it at all, but it would have to be something other than the Max blue line, or else it would take me forever just to get out of the metro area. These transit solutions have to have some respect for my personal time for me to regard them as serious options.

Timberline is planning on building a gondola from the lodge to Government Camp, such that it would never again be necessary to climb the road from 26. Wouldn’t be a bad idea to have a network of gondolas in the Hood area.

mark
Guest
mark

Our family has been going up to Mt. Hood from inner SE Portland for a few years now without driving. We take suitcases full of ski clothing and groceries with us on the trip. We take trimet from in front of our house to the Gresham Transit Center, catch the Sandy bus right there, and from the Sandy Transit Center we catch the Mt. Hood Express. It takes 2.5-3 hours depending on connections, and the total fare for one person is only $5.50. Way better than driving!

bikeninja
Guest
bikeninja

When I was a teenager back in the 1970’s there were a number of buses that would pick you up from various locations around the metro area ( lloyd center, reed, ski chalet etc.) and take you directly to Meadows, Timberline or Ski Bowl. It baffles me that such a thing is not available today, and the only substitute is a convoluted series of connecting buses. I guess the giant blob of happy motoring has washed over us pushing sensible alternatives in to the ditch.

Fred
Guest
Fred

“Giant blob of happy motoring” is the phrase of the week. 🙂

turnips
Guest
turnips

works with a bike, too. only room for two bikes on some of the buses, but the driver graciously allowed a bike inside the bus when I was traveling with two friends.

Dan
Guest
Dan

That is hardcore, I take my hat off to you.

9watts
Subscriber

And it would be markedly less hardcore if more of us did that, joined mark and his family.

Dave
Guest
Dave

Yes but, as with any other road “enhancement,” whose neighborhood gets mowed down to accommodate it? Like it or not, cities just plain run out of room for cars and you can’t pretend otherwise. The “war on cars” is more grounded in reality than the wish to expand roads with no limits.

chris
Guest
chris

FWIW, I’m also in favor of automated enforcement, as is more common in European cities like Oslo, which everybody is discussing. Even Oslo, however, has expressways leaving the city, although many of them are hidden as tunnels, including one underneath downtown. The fact that Norway has built a ton of bypass tunnels tends to be ignored.

Middle of the Road Guy
Guest
Middle of the Road Guy

I’m legitimately curious if Oslo has the same minority enforcement bias with regard to automated approaches as some people suggest we have here.

9watts
Subscriber

I doubt it.
I also doubt that their police force originated as slave patrols, as ours did.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

Slave patrols in southern states are known to have made great use of automated enforcement. It’s this well documented historical fact that leads me to oppose speed cameras today.

One
Guest

“3 feet law in WA: Our neighbors to the north and perennially-ranked #1 bike-friendly state of Washington, now have a much more effective passing law in the books. It’s better than Oregon’s because it applies to all vulnerable road users and includes a stipulation that drivers must move one lane over when there are two or more lanes in the same direction.”

Oregon has a super majority in the house and senate and governor. We could pass any legislation that we want. We could have all of the protections that WA has. We could have the budget that we need to build out the 2030 bicycle mast plan and more. We could stop highway expansion and induced demand. We could do what Oslo and others are doing to work towards Vision Zero.

But the Dems don’t want that. We could have ranked choice voting (like Maine) or other more just voting rules. Dems don’t want that either.

Jason H
Guest
Jason H

The car-culture bias against the initiatives you mention cuts across all political lines and segments of the population in my experience. To lay the blame on just 1 of the 2 major national parties isn’t really accurate. It will take a wholesale change in attitudes for people to come around in a major way. The unfortunate reality of climate-change, and the somewhat thankful desire of most people to effect some amount of personal mitigation to the crisis is one such mover.

I feel sure in the case of Oslo, if it was just one party promoting change, in what I would guess without researching their local politics is a broader political coalition, I doubt they would have achieved the vision zero results they have. Instead I’m sure with many of the programs focussed on emissions reductions as well as safety, and staggered to roll out over phases, they achieved a broader support to implement them over the naysayers.

Don’t forget as well the Oregon quorum rules. Look what happened last year when Oregon Democrats tried to pass progressive climate legislation. The Republican minority absconded and held the Senate hostage until it died. The supermajority does not have as you suggest the power to pass “any legislation that we want”. Moves are afoot to reduce the quorum to a simple majority, but that is still unsure of coming to fruition.

One
Guest

Pfffthsss. Weak excuses. The Republicans running from HB2020 wasn’t the end of that climate policy bill. The Dems response of throwing their hands up and saying “Well, I guess there’s nothing we can do now” is what ended that one. Quorum rules not just? FIX THEM! You’ve got a damn super majority. I don’t wanna hear tears because you lost your bill to a super minority of Republicans. Get back in the ring and don’t come out until you’ve won. #Weaksauce

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

How do you change the rules on quorum when you can’t get a quorum to vote on changing the rules?

While I am happy that the Republicans are out of power, I am wary of completely squashing minority rights. It may be that the current Democratic majority, like all Democratic majorities before, is not permanent, and removing all power from the minority party may come back to bite us when a less palatable group is in charge.

One
Guest

Kitty. Are you telling me there hasn’t been quorum since?
Ir there HAS been quorum, but the Dems just Gave Up?!?

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

I don’t track things in that level of detail, but I do know that if I were in a minority party that had only one lever for influence, and if the majority were trying to take it away, I’d pull that lever, hard. That is, if the Democrats proposed changing quorum rules, I doubt they’d get quorum to do so.

Dave
Guest
Dave

Yes, remember that if Jason Atkinson replaces Greg Walden in Congress your state will have an enthusiastically pro-bike……………Republican!

Pete
Guest
Pete

…and an armed one at that! 😉

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

“Dems” is not a monolithic bloc which “thinks” or “wants” anything. Some Democrats want ranked choice voting, some (apparently) don’t, . Just like everyone else.

Damien E
Guest
Damien E

“We could have ranked choice voting (like Maine) or other more just voting rules. Dems don’t want that either.”

Look out for STAR voting, coming from our own Lane county/now Eugene. It has numerous advantages over ranked choice (though don’t get me wrong, ranked choice is still miles ahead of our current plurality system, and ending the spoiler effect, while advantageous to voters, is still likely to be resisted by politicians who use it as a convenient cudgel for voter shaming).

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

RE Tappan Zee attracting new traffic:

Hardly a surprise. As the article notes “the new bridge has attracted more traffic, especially among trucks who see the bridge as a less-expensive option than other Hudson crossings”. It’s a better, cheaper crossing, so of course people are going to use it over less better, less cheaper options, which, consequently, now have less traffic on them, which is probably a good thing for them.

The interesting question is whether it “induced” additional traffic that wasn’t already in the system. That is, do people now drive (or use trucks) that didn’t before, and does the value of these new trips (or commerce) outweigh their cost?

9watts
Subscriber

Value to whom? = private no doubt
Cost to whom? = public no doubt

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

That overly simplistic view is how these things work at the overly simplistic level. The public pays for education, the benefits accrue to individuals. The public pays for fire protection, the benefits accrue to individuals. The public pays for bike lanes, the benefits accrue to individuals. The public pays for other transportation services/infrastructure, the benefits accrue to individuals.

So yes… the public paid for the bridge (or not, depending on how the bonds are being repaid), and people who use it will benefit (as well as those who use other bridges that have less traffic, and those who get cheaper products or services because the cost of transporting goods has fallen, and those who get more government services because there is more tax revenue from the increased commerce from the cheaper products or services, and maybe some other people too).

9watts
Subscriber

It is not nearly so simplistic.

Take the recent and very expensive expansion of the I5 off ramps at Woodburn. The taxpayer forked over what was it $15million, and the owners of the Premium Outlet Mall laugh all the way to the bank. Private in our time and place doesn’t just mean you and me, individuals.

The public. I would argue, got nothing out of that expenditure. Some jobs were temporarily created, some asphalt and concrete suppliers made hay, but the rest of us who are not patrons of those silly stores got nothing because the lines of cars jamming up the freeway on Black Friday are basically as long as they were before those off ramps got doubled.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

That we can both cite examples of public money being used to build things that benefit small groups tells us nothing about the Tappan Zee project, or the general case for (or against) government spending, except we need to be vigilant and maintain our power to have input on projects that might be misguided.

Generalizing from the the Woodburn project is simplistic.

9watts
Subscriber

Correct. But I wasn’t responding to the Tappan Zee bridge, but to this statement of yours: “does the value of these new trips (or commerce) outweigh their cost?”

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

That was a question that should be considered after determining if the new bridge actually induced any new travel demand (rather than providing a more efficient conduit for existing demand) before deciding if such induction (if any) were a net positive or negative.

9watts
Subscriber

“The public pays for education, the benefits accrue to individuals…”

Is that how you understand this? Because I don’t. I would prefer to live in a society that is organized, governed, run, maintained by people who are savvy, smart, experienced, thoughtful, interesting. Some though probably not all of those characteristics can be aided and encouraged by what we call education. We all *collectively* benefit, probably even more than we individually do.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

Only at the simplistic level. I generally support projects and efforts that contribute towards the public good, and I generally believe that transportation infrastructure qualifies. I don’t know whether the Tappan Zee project benefits the general public, but you certainly haven’t made the case that it doesn’t, and I’ve enumerated several reasons why it might. (And if it’s being paid for by users, it might not even matter.)

Jason
Guest
Jason

Ebikes are amazing. I was very down on them for the longest time. I’ve changed my mind on them though. Imagine, as a commuter who works downtown and wants to get to a gym at SE 60th and Lincoln for a 5:30 class. On an analogue bike, I would have to leave the office at 4:45 at the latest. I’d arrive around 5:05 and that gives me enough time to lock up, change and catch my breath. All while being a few minutes early to the actual class. On an ebike, I could leave at 5:00 and arrive to lock up at 5:10. Really, if you have time constraints that make you ditch a bike some days, think about what an ebike would make possible. I’ve been asked, “isn’t that cheating?” To which I say, “I can go farther, faster for the same effort.” And never mind that a purist could say most of modern bike engineering is cheating. From multiple gears to super light materials, cheating really is relative. Unless you get a class 2 ebike, that’s defiantly cheating.

Toby Keith
Guest
Toby Keith

I’m all for them (e-bikes). I just hate getting passed so damn fast and close without so much as a “on your left” and this is even on sidewalks like Going coming off Swan Island.

Todd Boulanger
Guest
Todd Boulanger

I agree, e-bikes are a great tool. But with greater speed comes greater responsibility…like advance warning of passing slower foot and bike traffic. e-Bikes are not only faster but they are often more quiet than an old analogue bike with a rider huffing and puffing to go 20mph+…plus the chain sprocket noise.

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

My silent and speedy e-bike is why I always shout “HOT PIZZA!!!!” as I’m about to buzz some hapless analog cyclist.

middle of the road guy
Guest
middle of the road guy

If you are biking in stereo you can pass on either side.

Pete
Guest
Pete

“Hapless analog cyclist”… OK, that just might have to become my new nickname!

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

HOT PETE_A!!!!

pdx2wheeler
Subscriber

I ride my e-bike with a portable speaker so people hear me coming… I ring my bell like a madman too. Everyone hates me, but I’m okay with that.

X
Guest
X

I’ve been drawn to the idea of getting an e bike, or converting a bike I have, for years. My one test experience was positive, and yet I’m still on the fence. Why? For a start, batteries. I don’t want to replace that extra component of the bike at an unknown future date. Also I’ve pretty much tailored my life to the performance of the bikes I have, which is why I’m smiling at your riding-to-the-gym example.

I’lll give you the benefit of the doubt that SE 60th / Lincoln is near your home but surely there is a workout available closer to downtown? The former City Bikes daughter shop is a cross training gym for example, it’s not like a person would break a sweat 😉 riding over there.

My bike is sort of my gym, that and my friend’s woodpile, my compost piles, etc.

colton
Guest
colton

“and wants to get to a gym at SE 60th and Lincoln for a 5:30 class” – Jason

If you rode a regular bike, you’d already have 20 minutes of exercise in before you even got to the gym.

Dan
Guest
Dan

Yeah, this is an obvious red herring, there’s no gym at SE 60th and Lincoln 🙂

idlebytes
Guest
idlebytes

Perhaps they meant Bleeding Hearts Kettlebell at 50th and Lincoln. I bike past there almost everyday from downtown. I would think his 10 minute estimate for an e-bike is a bit off though. Between lights, stopping and slowing for other road users and just generally riding safe I’d be surprised if an ebike would get me there much faster maybe 5 minutes but probably more likely 2-3.

pdx2wheeler
Subscriber

Believe it or not, study shows e-bike riders get more exercise than cyclists!
https://electrek.co/2019/08/11/electric-bike-riders-more-exercise-than-cyclists/

Al
Guest
Al

This totally makes sense. The perceived effort is less so it lowers the barrier to consider an ebike for the trip.

Ebikes have improved my trip times and I don’t even own one. There have been several times when I hopped on the back wheel of a passing ebike for a tow on the Springwater.

9watts
Subscriber

Unfortunately that article you linked to is really misleading, besides not providing any link to the study itself. This is from the abstract of the study he misquotes:

“Therefore, this data suggests that e-bike use leads to substantial increases in physical activity in e-bikers switching from private motorized vehicle and public transport, while net losses in physical activity in e-bikers switching from cycling were much less due to increases in overall travel distance.”
https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:0775194c-3591-4430-ba59-615420ddfee5/download_file?file_format=pdf&safe_filename=PASTA_Manuscript_Ebike_TRIP_v.2.0.pdf&type_of_work=Journal+article

9watts
Subscriber

And a bit more:
“Regarding physical activity, e-biking requires less physical effort than cycling due to the electric-motor support (12). Previous research showed that body energy consumption when pedalling while e-biking to be 24% lower than on bicycles (13), while others found that this value can range from 15% to 25% depending on the level of assistance (14).”

middle of the road guy
Guest
middle of the road guy

And you could drag your kettlebells behind you.

Middle of the Road Guy
Guest
Middle of the Road Guy

See, we actually have something in common!

X
Guest
X

“Feb. 7, 2020: Winter Bike to Work Day. Always the first Friday in February.”

Not to be cancelled for any reason.

Thanks Barb!

Carrie
Guest
Carrie

Toby Keith
I’m all for them (e-bikes). I just hate getting passed so damn fast and close without so much as a “on your left” and this is even on sidewalks like Going coming off Swan Island.

I really, really try not to attribute my interactions with others out there as ‘cycling while female’, but in the past 4 months of riding my e-bike I seem to have more ‘can’t win’ interactions with other cyclists in this regard. If I ring my bell, it seems like I frequently get some snide comment about either going to fast and/or some weird push back noise (this morning I rang at a person on a bike who ran the red light at Clinton/12th — I was on 12th — just so they knew I was coming at them because they didn’t look & they made a snide comment at me). If I don’t ring my bell (and I try to only do this in situations where there is LOTS of passing room), people either lecture me about calling out my passes (last time was on a road where I was in the middle of the lane and the person lecturing me was well off to the right) or else they also lecture me again about going to fast. And I’m not out there riding 30 mph — I am generally in the < 20mph category regularly, even with e-assist.

So, from the other side of the fence, maybe lets cut each other some slack out there, ok? But I do hear what you're saying and WILL remember how much quieter I am on the e-bike and act accordingly re: bell ringing. Pushback aside.

Fred
Guest
Fred

I hear ya, Carrie. I can’t speak to the “cycling while female” issue since I’m an old tall white guy, but when I ride my e-bike I too hear lots of snide comments from cycling purists. In fact, I now realize that I have occasionally made snide comments toward e-cyclists when I am NOT riding my e-bike, so maybe it’s just a dominance thing: we feel diminished by e-bikes and need to hit back.

Whatever you do, keep riding that e-bike and ignore the comments.

JONAS
Guest
JONAS

Some of the nicest cyclists I encounter are people on e-bikes. I actually observe more bad and negative behavior from analog cyclists as evidence in some of the nonconstructive comments here.

I admire the whole ebike culture of “just riding for transportation”. I don’t get the impression that ebikes are about being macho, or to project toxic-masculine behavior towards other cyclists.

Been noticing I am often out-numbered with ebikes at some stoplights. Love it! I hope to see more because we need more nice people on bikes out there.

Jay Dedd
Guest
Jay Dedd

I tend to view a (close, fast) pass by an e-rider as an invitation not for snide comments, but for a friendly bit of Cat 6, conditions permitting.

This is especially the case when an e-rider blows through an accumulated group taking off from a newly green light, instead of chilling and gradually filtering through the group.

David Hampsten
Guest

York is a smaller city in the UK with a population of around 200,000 – more like Eugene in size, similar to Cambridge or Oxford in size. It’s both very touristy and full of students, with loads of history. (It was founded in 70 AD as a major Roman legion military base, the glorious 9th, and 3 emperors were subsequently “made” there, unlike dowdy old London). It’s also incredibly bike and pedestrian friendly – one of my all-time favorite places to visit in Europe. In the inner part of the city, you can walk in most city streets without having to worry about cars passing – the car drivers themselves are only allowed to go at about 10 mph, so they avoid the area.

When I last visited York in 2012, they had already banned bicyclists from the pedestrian shopping zone in the very center of that most ancient city, south of the Minster (the cathedral in the picture), as the area was too congested with pedestrians. At the time, York was second only to Cambridge in terms of bicycle use towards total VMT (over 25% at that time.) Already by then cars were not exactly banned from the medieval core (the larger area within the still intact walkable city walls), but there were so many traffic diverters and speed controls that any car foolish enough to venture there was going to be moving awfully slow to get anywhere. Plus the streets are super narrow, not really wide enough for opposing cars to pass each other except in short spots. No onstreet parking of course. (It has to be noted that the sidewalks are not ADA, not even close.)

The entire “public transport” system is privately owned and operated both there and in most of the UK, which is hard for most Americans to wrap their heads around. Buses (coaches) that both serve the city, those that serve rural areas, and the intercity services are all operated by competing commercial companies, usually subsidized. Same with the numerous trains connecting to the city (York has always been a major railroad junction – it even has an incredible railroad museum.) It’s about 2 hours by fast train to London on the express.

However, what I found most interesting and relevant to Portland about York was that the city required freight shippers making deliveries to the inner city to transfer their loads to smaller trucks, effectively restricting big semis (or lorries as they are called there) to the outer suburbs.

devon
Guest
devon

“cycling purists”

UGGGHHHHGGGGGHHHH

this is so triggering, I cannot

El Biciclero
Guest
El Biciclero

Is “analog” really the opposite of “electric”?

Middle of the Road Guy
Guest
Middle of the Road Guy

Are friends electric?

Resopmok
Guest
Resopmok

In my world “acoustic” is the opposite of electric, and an ebike is definitely an amped up version of pedal-only one. Maybe more accurate than analog should be “fully mechanical” or just “mechanical”.

El Biciclero
Guest
El Biciclero

In my world, ln (as in, “natural log”) is an opposite of sorts to e. if ebike = “e-bike”, then ln(e-bike) = “bike”. Right? We could just go with ‘log bike, and no one would know whether we meant “analog” or “natural log”. I also like “ATP-bike”

El Biciclero
Guest
El Biciclero

Well, HTML fail. “ebike” in the above was meant as e^bike, as in “bike” is an exponent.