BikePortland.org

The Monday Roundup: Cars as weapons, shredding bikes, seeing Black riders, and more


Here are the most noteworthy items the BikePortland community came across in the past seven days.

Vehicular violence: We’ve seen several examples of people using vehicles as weapons at protests around the country: A tanker truck driver was arrested after barreling through a crowd of protestors in Minneapolis; NYPD officers used their SUVs as battering rams; and a driver rammed into a skateboarder in northeast Portland on Friday.

CDC’s bad advice: The U.S. Centers for Disease Control said employers should encourage people to drive alone in cars to work, a move that will further erode transit use and have dramatic negative impact on public health. The recommendation caused a swift and stern reaction from the National Association of City Transportation Officials (NACTO).

Vancouver BC open streets: A driving ban in Stanley Park went so well that Vancouverites are set to remove parked cars and drivers from major arterials in favor of dining tables and other business services.

Parklets in the ‘Couv: Even our local Vancouver is getting into it with a new program that will allow businesses to seat customers in spaces formerly used to store private vehicles.

London’s future: “We have no choice. This is not ideological opportunism. This is a necessity,” says London’s walking and cycling commissioner about their response to Covid-19 streets.

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The U.K. isn’t messing around: “Anything that does not meaningfully alter the status quo on the road will not be funded,” stated an official memo sent to local governments from the U.K.’s Department for Transportation.

Shredding bikes (not in a good way): Tens of thousands of perfectly good Jump e-bikes (used in bike share systems) were destroyed and scrapped last week, in a “shameful” display of waste that raises deep questions about micromobility vehicles and the companies who own them.

See Black riders: Many transportation and bike advocacy-related systems perpetuate systemic racism. One of them is how cities count bicycle users in ways that don’t fully see the full scope of who’s on bikes.

No cars in the Quarter: It’s inspiring to see people like New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell seriously consider banning driving in large areas like the famous French Quarter. “This is the city’s time to reimagine just how we live, how we move about, how we enjoy, and how we get to know and learn the fabric of our city,” she says.

Toll road bailout: Funny how toll roads are pitched as private solutions but then owners stick hands out for public tax dollars when going gets tough.

E-buses: The transit system that serves the Salem-Keizer region won a $3.5 million grant and will use the funds to purchase five electric buses.

Video of the Week: Microcars being used in The Netherlands are causing a bit of consternation in the world’s most famous bike lanes.

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