In the past few days I’ve heard from two readers concerned that a ghost bike in the Creston-Kenilworth neighborhood would be removed by the City of Portland. “I know there is a ton going on right now and this probably not high on most everyone’s list of important things,” the reader shared. “But it is a memorial.”
Ghost bikes are memorials that spring up at intersections after a bicycle rider is involved in a fatal traffic crash. They’re meant to remind the community of the tragedy and encourage people to use streets with greater awareness of the deadly consequences that could result from their actions.
The ghost bike on Southeast Cesar Chavez Boulevard and Gladstone was installed for 22-year-old Mark Angeles. In May 2015, Angeles was biking on Gladstone and died after he collided with the driver of a truck as he attempted to turn onto Cesar Chavez.
Readers alerted me of yellow tags currently attached to the bike. “The Bicycle Appears Abandoned” reads the tag, accompanied by an official City of Portland seal and reference to city code (16.70.320) that states a bicycle may be removed if left unattended for 72 hours. The Portland Bureau of Transportation has an abandoned bike program where staffers will tag and remove bikes they become aware of. Most bikes are flagged from public complaints that can take the form of an email to PBOT or via an online form.
This isn’t the first time we’ve reported on this particular bike. Just six days after the Angeles tragedy his ghost bike was hit and heavily damaged by a reckless driver.
The bike was due to be removed this morning.
When contacted about the abandoned bike tag this morning, PBOT said it was, “an internal miscommunication.” “We will be removing the abandoned bike tag and the ghost bike will stay.”
— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and firstname.lastname@example.org
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