Splendid Cycles Big Sale

Dan Ryan wins seat on Portland City Council

Posted by on August 12th, 2020 at 1:27 pm

Dan Ryan

Dan Ryan earned a seat on Portland City Council by nabbing 51% of ballots cast in the race against Loretta Smith for position 2. Ryan has a lead of about 4,500 votes with just 3,474 uncounted ballots remaining. Ryan will fill Nick Fish’s seat when he moves into City Hall next month.

Ryan is a former Portland Public School board member, graduate of Roosevelt High School in St. Johns, member of many local advisory boards, and former executive director of education nonprofit All Hands Raised.

Before typing anything else, I want to say I dropped the ball on this race. I’m sorry. I regret not getting both candidates on record about cycling and transportation-related issues. In years past we could rely on those issues being part of the campaign dialogue and news cycle. But as transportation has fallen off the list of high-priority topics now dominated by police reform, homelessness, affordable housing, and other important issues; it’s our responsibility to raise the issue.

Now we have a new council member who’s gone largely unvetted when it comes to transportation policy. Ryan (like most candidates these days, unfortunately) doesn’t mention transportation on a list of “strategic priorities” on his website. At the transportation candidate forum held back in March, Ryan’s comments lacked substance and didn’t make it into our lengthy coverage. The only notable stance he’s taken publicly is to oppose ODOT’s I-5 Rose Quarter project, which he said is “Not OK” because it would lead to, “Spewing emissions on middle school kids,” and “Impinging on the Esplanade.”

The other tidbit of bicycling policy we’ve heard from Ryan is from a debate hosted by the Portland Parks Foundation on July 16th. Ryan was asked if he supports mountain biking in Forest Park and if not, where he thinks mountain bike riders should go. Here’s his response:

“It’s very situational. I’ve had experiences in Forest Park where I certainly did not enjoy a mountain bike zooming by me. So I always wondered where’s that section of Forest Park that could be utilized for that. I actually prefer Forest Park to be for hiking and maybe for running as long as they stay behind you and come in on your left. I find Forest Park to be a wonderful refuge for tranquility. We’re so fortunate to have that access in a city, in an urban dwelling. I think we need a separate place for riding bikes in the park… Maybe it should be where we repurpose one of those golf courses.”

That’s a very disappointing response that shows a lack of perspective and understanding about this issue. We look forward to talking more with Ryan about this and other issues in the weeks and months to come.

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For now, here’s more of Ryan’s bio from the “About” page of his campaign website:

“Dan was an elected member of the Portland Public School Board from 2005 to 2008. This passion for education continued when Dan Ryan served as the CEO of All Hands Raised (formerly Portland Schools Foundation) from 2008 to 2019. As the backbone of the organization for the All Hands Raised Partnership, Dan lead the organization in synchronizing Multnomah County’s collective actions and guiding them toward measurable, meaningful results and rallying the community together to

Dan was the Portland Light of Fire Executive Director of the Year in 2018. Dan received recognition as one of Portland Monthly Magazine’s 50 Most Influential Portlanders, and is an alumnus of the American Leadership Forum in Oregon (ALF Class of XXVIII). Dan serves on the leadership advisory boards of Wells Fargo, the Portland Trail Blazers, and Trillium Family Services and the University of Oregon Alumni Association. Prior to All Hands Raised, Dan worked in the private, public and non-profit sector including positions at the Oregon Ballet Theatre, Portland State University, Metropolitan Group, Virginia Mason Foundation, and New School University. He holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Oregon and did graduate-level work at New School University’s Graduate School of Management & Urban Professional.”

Because this was a special election, Ryan’s term will last until December 31st, 2022.

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

This is fantastic! Police reform, here we come!

matthewmcvickar
Member

Ehh, maybe not:

When asked Wednesday if he would like to see more money taken out of the police bureau, Ryan was noncommittal.

“We have to justify the strategy of what each investment is and what success looks like,” Ryan said. “It’s easy to destroy and it’s a lot harder to build.”

Roberta
Guest

I’d be down with taking over the golf courses for mountain biking. Turn all the golf courses into affordable housing, cycling and mobility devices car free boulevards?

Holy duck that would be cool. I’m ready for new communal living on the golf course! Without the white balls or wacky sticks.

Chris I
Guest
Chris I

The back 9 at Rose City would make an amazing mountain bike park.

David Hampsten
Guest
David Hampsten

When we were working on the EPIM in 2012, we did formally propose a major bike path through Glendoveer – but Metro wasn’t very keen on it. However, when we later proposed a trail system for Kelly Butte, Portland Parks & Rec was OK with it, but not so much the city water bureau who have a 25 million gallon drinking water jug up there.

Toby Keith
Guest
Toby Keith

No bike path in Glendoveer! It’s one of the only things out here that hasn’t been ruined by campers, trash, and chop shops.

SilkySlim
Guest
SilkySlim

Even as a golfer (ok, driving range duffer), I find myself fantasizing about other uses for our local courses. My current pipe dream: turn the stunning, water feature laden back nine of Eastmoreland into a permanent cyclocross venue and training ground. And I guess toss in some pickle ball courts, and a bike polo court, and heck a velodrome too.

Even if it was just nine holes carved away from a couple of our public courses, that would boost our part acreage significantly. Honestly I never want to play a full 18 anyways.

Slabtownie
Guest
Slabtownie

I’m a golfer but Rose City seems like a prime location for a large mixed-use development, starting with the back 9. A park would be nice too, or some combination of the 2.

PNWPhotoWalks
Subscriber

I agree. My perspective – https://flic.kr/p/2i1oVe7

christopher san agustin
Guest
christopher san agustin

#freeforestpark

Alex
Subscriber
Alex

Now’s a great time to start cutting some new trail in Forest Park so it can be eventually legalized. Lead by example.

Paul H
Guest
Paul H

This is a bad tactic

Juston D Manville
Guest
Juston D Manville

I disagree

jered l bogli
Guest
jered l bogli

YESSSSSS!

SERider
Guest
SERider

where does he live?

Jason
Guest
Jason

At his home.

smokeyjoe
Guest
smokeyjoe

I think he lives in Arbor lodge near New Seasons.

Gary B
Guest
Gary B

I heard St. Johns, but don’t know for sure.

Brian
Guest
Brian

With that Forest Park response he is a shoo-in to lead PP&R.

Granpa
Guest
Granpa

At the close of an interview with OPB, Ryan thanked the interviewer for the opportunity to “do dialogue”. I rolled my eyes wondering what other manner of pretentious fluff we are in for.

Rich
Guest
Rich

Given that the city owns five golf courses and two continually run operating deficits (https://www.oregonlive.com/portland/2019/05/portlands-city-owned-golf-courses-are-essentially-broke-auditors-find.html), it seems a no-brainer to convert some of this land to bike parks that can be enjoyed by a wider demographic, likely at a lower administrative and operating cost.
I often scratch my head at how PP&R can own and operate the golf courses and PIR, which address the needs of a small demographic, while we lack a half-decent mountain bike trail or even a pump track.

Brian
Guest
Brian

#letnwtahelp

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

“I often scratch my head at how PP&R can own and operate facilities catering to their small demographic, while we lack a half-decent facilities for our small demographic.”

Are golfers and car race fans really small demographics?

That said, if we’re carving things up, it would be cool to create a bike path along the edge of the Eastmoreland golf course running along the UPRR tracks connecting SE Reedway to SE Tacoma.

Jason
Guest
Jason

Are golfers and car race fans really small demographics?

First, you have straw manned Rich because he never mentioned race car fans!
Second, yes… As the article he linked says:

Golf is declining in popularity

Hello, Kitty
Subscriber
Hello, Kitty

Did I really build a straw man? What is that PIR that Rich mentioned serves “a small demographic”?

And does “declining in popularity” equate to “small demographic”? Maybe someday.

I’m glad to see you are keeping me honest!

Chris I
Guest
Chris I

The Googles tells me 8% of Americans golf. Similar Googles for biking? 12%.

I think a better question is: how many Portlanders use the back 9 of a given course per year? How many are expected to use it once converted to a multi-use park?

Rich
Guest
Rich

If we really want to get pedantic, the Bureau of Labor Statistics seems to have the most comprehensive data on sports participation from 2003-2015.
https://www.bls.gov/spotlight/2017/sports-and-exercise/home.htm

For both golf and cycling the percentage of people aged 15 and older who engaged in them on an average day from 2009 to 2015 is 3.1 percent. Fair enough – the demographic “size” is the same. However the demographic composition is very different. Golf is older (47.8 percent over age 55) and more male (85/15 ratio of male/female) and, as mentioned previously its popularity is in decline. There’s also a lot of published statistics about the average income level of golfers but let’s not go there.
As for the 286 acres at PIR, the majority of the daily use is for people to drive their cars and motorcycles recreationally around the track. To do this, you generally need a license from the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA). SCCA reports their national membership at 67,000 people. PIR does hold an occasional public event with a broader appeal but that’s not its general usage.
All of this is beside the point because my argument is that the city provides facilities and accommodations for these groups, as it should for any number of sports. Yet if those facilities are underused, then it makes sense to revisit how we allocate that space.
Off-road cycling, given its broader demographic across ages, genders and income levels as well as its relatively low barrier to entry ($7,000 Yetis notwithstanding), administrative cost and environmental impact, seems like a good option for a share of that land.

Laura
Guest
Laura

Pre-Covid, PIR did host bike racing events, including road races and short track Mtn. Bike a couple of nights a week.
With Broadmoor closing (northern half to be enhanced as wetland mitigation for redevelopment of Portland Meadows by Amazon; southern part to be warehousing/industrial), there may be more demand at City courses. Still, it would be nice to let some other uses share those nice green spaces.

jered l bogli
Guest
jered l bogli

Exactly, PIR is used almost every night of the week for something bicycle related, moto / auto related, it really does get solid use in non-covid times between The road races on the track, mtb short track races, cyclocross and I believe there is an adaptive cycling group that rides there one night a week too.

qqq
Guest
qqq

I agree. Decades ago, I could see more justification for public courses. It seems like it was much more popular than now, mountain biking was almost unknown, and there was lots of undeveloped land around for anyone to bike in that did bike. Golf courses seem like they’re there because they were already there, versus them being there because of conscious determinations that they are the best current use for the land.

A golf course could easily accommodate other in-demand activities (walking, dog areas, etc.) along with biking, unlike golf courses. And golf course landscaping is hardly environmentally friendly compared to what the landscaping could be as a bike park.

Not that his answer about Forest Park wasn’t horrible.

qqq
Guest
qqq

Similar situation exists with park tennis courts. Parks expends a lot of effort keeping people off them who want to use them for dogs, kids riding trikes or learning to ride bikes, etc. instead of thinking that maybe people are doing that because those often-empty courts are the only flat, fenced, lit, paved areas available to people, and converting a few here and there to multi-use would provide a lot more recreational opportunities than reserving them all for tennis. Golf courses would be overrun with non-golf users–way more people than golfers–if they weren’t fenced and guarded. If they weren’t already golf courses, I doubt there’d be much demand for making them golf courses.

Brian
Guest
Brian

Repurposing golf course could definitely meet a need, but we need to keep in mind that there isn’t one type of mountain biker. There are those who prefer bike parks with jumps, pump tracks, skills areas, etc. Other riders prefer a similar experience as hikers, to get out of the city and explore nature on long rides in the woods. That is why we need places like Gateway Green, as well as longer, singletrack trails in places like Forest Park. Given the increase popularity in mountain biking and the space we have in and around Portland, different types of riders can and should be accommodated. It is baffling that we haven’t seen our leaders work more closely with their mountain bike constituents to affect change.

maxD
Guest
maxD

I also think Metro should not be given a pass. They exclude the public from a lot of public lands in the name of habitat. I support urban habitat, but IMO it must be shared with people, even if that compromises the ecological integrity. Being outside is far too valuable to set aside huge tracts of land in the City exclusively for habitat. I would support limited seasonal closures for nesting/migration, but Forest Park AND the property Metro owns needs to have much more recreational value including mt biking trails, and more trails for hiking with and without dogs.

Roberta Robles
Guest
Roberta Robles

Here in lies the pressure point. Metro doesnt support bikers. They’ve give everybody else a bunch of regional transport money like AVT but no one is giving money away to you know actually build bike lanes. All activist groups except opal and BikeLoidPDX are on a city short list for transport justice work money. Sure that’s great but we need protected bike lanes. And nature bike trails. I’m deeply disappointed by the lack of regional advocacy and the preference for non profit groups to maintaining DOT billable hours instead of actually protecting vulnerable road users.

Bobcycle
Guest
Bobcycle

Jonathan did an article not to long ago on Vanport a neighborhood that after it flooded was turned into a golf course and there have been other black neighborhood changes that displaced the families and businesses that were there. Let’s show that black lives matter and offer golf course land to black owned businesses and families and rebuild those neighborhoods.

David Hampsten
Guest
David Hampsten

I’m sure you meant well by your suggestion, but golf courses, race tracks, and airports on flood plains are typically constructed to cover toxic waste dumps and/or poor boggy soils – in other words, the worst land. Vanport was a major industrial site during WWII, with poor or no environmental regulation; as a consequence, it was the part of Portland where blacks were allowed to live.

Bobcycle
Guest
Bobcycle

I stand corrected. Thank you for your insight and perspective.

dwk
Guest
dwk

Dan Ryan happens when democracy is dead in this city.
No support really, bland politics led by the lame.
His big backer is Hardesty, about as lame as you can get.
Wheeler is an just a pampered clueless white guy who was wheeled into position.,
Hardesty is beyond clueless, not one thing accomplished since she took office except to make Chloe look good.
We are in trouble…..on the national scene it looks like Trump will be thrown out, but locally we have the dumbest most inept people possible.

Granpa
Guest
Granpa

Whithering criticism,but clear eyed and accurate. Yet it still falls short of describing our feckless leadership

David Hampsten
Guest
David Hampsten

I’m afraid your urban politics are just as bad everywhere, including here in NC. Totally incompetent leadership made glaring in this crises.

As for the national election, low voter turnout usually yields an incumbent victory, at least in the swing states. We better hope the 44% registered voters who didn’t vote in 2016 get out there and vote.

Rivelo
Guest

Cut & Paste from OPB’s web site:

Safe to say, a special election to fill the fifth seat of the City Council may not have felt front of mind for many people in Oregon’s largest city. As of Wednesday afternoon, 39% of registered voters cast a ballot. Smith appeared to be taking the lead in North and East Portland, while Ryan was winning the city’s inner Eastside and Westside.

Pollster John Horvick with DHM research said he expects voter turnout will end up in the low 40s. For the primary in May, 52% of Multnomah County voters cast ballots.

Horvick said he was disappointed to see the massive call for change coming from Portlanders every night had not translated to a surge of voter turnout.

“This election just doesn’t capture the attention of the public,” he said.

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