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Self-governed City of Maywood Park at center of Gateway Green parking issue

Posted by on March 17th, 2021 at 10:00 am

Maywood Park residents print out flyers of this official City of Portland sign and place them on park visitor windshields.
(Photo: Dean Davidson)

A storm is brewing over parking for Gateway Green.

The popular destination is home to Portland’s first and only bike park. Recent major upgrades to its trails, pump track and jumps have led to a huge boost in crowds. But one of the park’s quirks is causing headaches for some visitors and people who live nearby.

Gateway Green is a major destination, yet it has no on-site auto access or auto parking.

Access to the park — which is sandwiched between two interstate freeways on 25 acres former Oregon Department of Transportation property (see map below) — is via the I-205 multi-use path. That means if you drive there, you must park at either the north or sound end of the path and then bike the short distance in. The south side is on a hill above the park and it’s busy with a major TriMet transit hub and large shopping center. The north side is a calmer, friendlier location that doesn’t require any hillclimbing. The only problem? The path and parking is in the City of Maywood Park.

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Maywood Park is a “city within a city“. Homeowners in the bucolic neighborhood voted to incorporate in 1967 in a bid to save their homes from the construction of I-205. Now they’re fighting to keep Gateway Green visitors and their cars off NE Maywood Place, a street that parallels a section of the I-205 bike path that offers a direct link into the park.

Another quirk? That street is under the jurisdiction of the City of Maywood Park. The City of Portland cannot enforce parking rules on it.

In recent weeks, people who park on that street have returned from riding sessions to find flyers on their windshields. One of them was Dean Davidson.

Davidson lives in the area and visits the bike park almost daily. Maywood Place is the closest and most convenient place for him to park (he says he would bike but local streets are way too dangerous for him and his family).

“I’ve been riding Gateway Green a lot with my kids,” he shared in an email to BikePortland last week. “And every time I do, this grouchy-looking couple comes by and puts signs on my car saying not to park in Maywood Park.” When he posted about it in a Facebook group for Gateway Green users, he learned nearby residents don’t like all the new traffic the park is adding to their self-ruled city.

“I feel like this is xenophobic and absurd,” Davidson said. “How can they not let us use taxpayer-funded public roads for parking? Those same people use Portland roads and we let them. People park in front of my house all the time and I could care less.”

“I feel like this is xenophobic and absurd.”
— Dean Davidson

Behind the scenes, delicate diplomacy and discussions between the City of Maywood Park, Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R) and the Friends of Gateway Green (FoGG) have sought to address the issue before it escalates.

FoGG founding member and one of the visionaries behind the park, Linda Robinson, said they’ve discussed parking with Maywood residents for years. “We agreed to do a number of things that we thought would make people more likely to enter the park from the south end (the Gateway Transit Center),” she wrote in a reply to Davidson on Facebook. “We also agreed, that in all of our publicity for the park, we would tell people the same thing.”

The official PP&R website for the park has a section titled, “Help Gateway Green be a good neighbor: Please, do not park in Maywood Park.”

PP&R spokesperson Mark Ross says they’ve heard parking concerns — as well as complaints about congestion, trash, and damage to vegetation along NE Maywood Place), ever since the park opened. “PP&R has made efforts to help them address those issues, including updated web language related to parking and a discussion about improved signage. PP&R has not finalized signage and has not posted any signage at Gateway Green.”

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PP&R dispatched their Safety and Ranger Program Coordinator Victor Sanders to the February 2021 meeting of the Maywood Park City Council. He announced himself as the new liaison and outlines some of the measures PP&R is taking to ameliorate concerns. Concerns voiced by residents at the meeting included: fears that emergency vehicles might be delayed due to increased congestion, the lack of masks by path users, people parking on the wrong side of the street, an increase in garbage and broken glass.

Sanders agreed to follow-up on all the concerns. The main actions thus far is new signage that will be placed near the park entrance and along the path at Maywood Place. Conversations are happening with TriMet and the Gateway Shopping Center to create designated spaces for park visitors.

If the signage and education don’t do the trick, Maywood Park could create a permit or no-parking zone. Whether it would be enforced is another question (the City declined to comment for this story). The Portland Bureau of Transportation has no jurisdiction over streets in Maywood Park and cannot enforce parking rules there. Enforcement services for Maywood Park are contracted out to the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office.

The working relationship between City of Maywood Park and PP&R might be enough to stave off any stronger parking restrictions for now. But given the popularity of the park and the lack of desirable parking options on the south side, we likely haven’t heard the end of this story.

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

So if I read this correctly, and I did, the city is promising to do more for the impacts of its parks on other jurisdictions than its own? The worst consequence of being a bad neighbor would be that access to the park is more inconvenient.

I’ve got a hell of a lot more than that going on and the response is “we’re understaffed and it’s complicated.”

Tony Thayer-Osborne
Guest
Tony Thayer-Osborne

I think it’s worth noting that access from Maywood park is much more direct and almost free of trail-side camping. I usually come from the Gateway TC parking lot but I have to be aware of needles and broken glass while coming down the hill and that does provide a bit of a mental barrier against deciding to load up the bikes and head over.

Dean
Guest

Yeah – I’m a bit of a germaphobe and even just seeing used needles freaks me out. And the idea of my kids riding over them and potentially falling on them (I know, it’s a very slim possibility) is too much for me.

On the North side, there IS some trail-side camping going on but it’s a bit further removed from the trail and thus I haven’t had any problems. Before the latest round of improvements, the park itself had a ton of people camping in it. I rode fence line once and almost ran into a tent that was pitched on the trail.

Fred Bartleby
Guest
Fred Bartleby

The park was closed for 9-10 months, of course there was “camping” happening there. But overall it hasn’t ever been a super popular place to squat because it’s inconvenient to get to and there isn’t a ton of shelter from the elements. I’ve been using the area off and on for 15 years, long before Gateway Green happened. There have always been makeshift trails on the ridge and jumps in the basin, but rarely were there ever any large scale encampments like the kind that are popular throughout Portland today.

Yes, the worst of the problem is elsewhere on the 205 path. Note how Maywood has always managed to keep it out of their jurisdiction. Perhaps we could learn a thing or two from their approach.

Steve C
Guest
Steve C

What is “their approach” other than policing their area and pushing people into other neighborhoods? Are they housing homeless people? Giving them treatment and support?

They have a jurisdictional advantage when it comes to harsh enforcement of camping and loitering ordinances, but I don’t think this is an approach that will help other neighborhoods or Portland as a whole address homelessness.

Mark smith
Guest
Mark smith

Perhaps we should be “giving treatment” to bank robbers? Maybe just a free withdrawal once in a while?

Ryan
Guest
Ryan

Seems to show highly underserved demand for pump parks and trails. Maybe the city should build more.

Dean
Guest

Wouldn’t that be amazing? You’re absolutely right that this highlights the need for additional trails in/around Portland. GG is absolutely packed even on weekdays, during off hours. I’m hoping the success of this park and the enthusiastic community surrounding it creates similar projects.

Cyclekrieg
Subscriber
Cyclekrieg

Its not like it doesn’t have lots of spaces… Forest Park, RVNA, etc.

Eric H
Guest
Eric H

Just think if there was some kind of master plan for this… They could call it, I don’t know, maybe the Off Road Cycling Master Plan or something like that.

cmh89
Guest
cmh89

Just to echo Dean’s sentiment, I’m guessing that the residents of Maywood Park don’t give it a second thought or have any qualms about parking in neighborhoods outside of their city. This is just nonsense NIMBYism and it’s sad that the City of Portland is wasting our taxpayer dollars trying to appease NIMBYs in a different city.

If Maywood Park wants to restrict their onstreet parking to just residents of the city, they should do what every other jurisdiction does and make their street parking by permit only. No amount of outreach and liasoning is going to stop people from parking there. Just add no parking signs and the “problem” will be solved.

rick
Guest
rick

Beaverton added bike lanes on 5th Street to the east of Western Avenue to remove camping. The city offered at least some help, but they are a city of putting up high SDC fees for ADUs and welcoming more drive-thrus and car dealers.

Chris I
Guest
Chris I

I’m installing signs in front of my house tomorrow: No parking for Maywood Park homeowners.

commentee
Guest
commentee

I’ll admit to having parked in Maywood Park twice. Both times I parked adjacent to the long linear park rather than on in front of anyone’s house or in the neighborhood. That street is not narrow where even park vehicles on both sides of the street would impede an ambulence. I can understand wanting to direct people to Gateway transit center, but for those coming from N/NE Portland on Sandy it’s always made sense to approach from the North. I don’t want to discount concerns, but I’m surprised because I’ve typically seen vehicles avoid parking in front of houses and just stick to the right side in front of the park and have never noticed any trash or waste. I understand people don’t like when ‘new people’ start showing up in their neighborhoods but having a high quality public park near you will attract users! I suppose they could institute their own permit program, or maybe they should install parking meters and make some $$ for their community by charging.

Fred
Guest
Fred

I agree: Maywood Park should view this situation as a money-making opportunity and charge car-drivers for parking. They could probably make enough to pay a full-time parking enforcement officer.

Lone Heckler
Guest
Lone Heckler

The local residents might be annoyed, frustrated, or tired of folks from elsewhere parking on their street, but a perusal of their own city code shows that the parkers are legal and fully within their rights.

https://maywoodpark.municipal.codes/MPMC/10.05

The only remedy for them would be a resident permit system, but often those come with a short-term (e.g. 2 hours or less) exception.

I live near a park and a church and frequently don’t have parking in front of my home. Why it’s such a big deal to people escapes me. And it looks like most of these homes, if not all, have driveways.

rainbike
Guest
rainbike

Was the park and church already there when you bought (assuming you bought)? I.e., was street parking an existing condition/norm, or a new condition/norm created by an outside entity? I suspect the former.

Chris I
Guest
Chris I

Irrelevant. The street is public space.

rainbike
Guest
rainbike

So, how long can I store my private property in the public commons? In your opinion.

squareman
Subscriber

No opinion needed. 24 hours is the city-wide limit in Portland. Don’t know about Maywood Park. It would fall under the jurisdiction of Multnomah County regulations or state regulations. https://www.portland.gov/code/16/20/170

Chris I
Guest
Chris I

24 hours, per city code. None of the families parking in Maywood so they can ride bikes for a few hours are violating city policy.

D2
Guest
D2

I think its pretty well documented that the population of cities continually increases and the only guarantee about your neighborhood is that it will not remain the same forever.

Dean
Guest

Concerns voiced by residents at the meeting included: fears that emergency vehicles might be delayed due to increased congestion, the lack of masks by path users, people parking on the wrong side of the street, an increase in garbage and broken glass.

Emergency vehicles being delayed due to congestion is hilarious. Parked cars isn’t congestion, and due to the fact that not everybody arrives at the same time I’ve never seen congestion. The lack of masks can be problematic, but in my experience far more cyclists are wearing masks than the people walking around. Just for example, the couple that is putting these fliers on cars don’t wear masks whereas I do. I have never seen anybody parked on the wrong side of the street (I mean – why would anybody even do that?). We also have trash pick-up days. And it’s not mountain bikers leaving trash there in the first place in my experience. So, we are doing far more good than harm and should be seen as a positive force in the area.

squareman
Subscriber

The width of Maywood Park’s residential streets is generally wider than any neighborhood street I’ve lived on in inner Portland. I’m still baffled as to how with all the reflexive “but what about emergency access” to every bike project proposed that there are so many neighborhood streets that allow parking on both sides of the street, and two cars cannot pass each other without one finding a turnout gap.

Mark smith
Guest
Mark smith

Anyone who carps about “emergency access” generally has never driven a commercial vehicle and far over estimates what a fire truck needs for space.

Pinot
Guest
Pinot

Parks posts similar passive aggressive signs in the ritzy neighborhood around the Japanese Gardens.

It’s public street parking, get over it homeowners.

drs
Guest
drs

That is extremely expensive real estate that is paid for and maintained by the taxpayers of the community. Maywood Park (and the City of Portland) have every right to meter and/or restrict parking on public streets. The homeowners have no right to deny parking on the public right of way that is adjacent to their houses, but the City sure does.

Fred Bartleby
Guest
Fred Bartleby

Yeah, funny how Maywood residents are being characterized as “grouchy” “NIMBYs” here yet the action they end up taking will be no less legit than an ordinance enacted by the City of Portland. Pot, meet Kettle.

SD
Guest
SD

The Maywood entrance is 100% the best entrance for small children and their families on bikes. I’ve been there a lot and have never seen trash, inappropriate parking or bad behavior. I have no problem with them instituting parking zones on the “house” side of the street, but it would be ridiculous to limit parking on the park side of the street.

Dean
Guest

To be clear: they already HAVE a parking zone on the “house” side of the street. In addition to private driveways. This issue isn’t about parking scarcity; the only thing I’ve been told is that they don’t like seeing non-residents there.

Fred Bartlyby
Guest
Fred Bartlyby

As mentioned in the story, they also don’t like the speeding and trash that increased auto traffic brings.

Momo
Guest
Momo

But…but…the word “park” is right there in the name! Maywood Park!

John Dieter
Guest
John Dieter

Maywood is a nice neighborhood. The proximity of the park is increasing the livability and value of the neighborhood. I agree w all the commenters, the people parking there, like myself, are courteous, clean and respectful. There is more traffic in the neighborhood for sure, same as near every park, school, church etc.

lvc
Guest
lvc

I agree with the general sentiment here that the neighborhood residents upset by the parking should get over it. However, when I’ve wanted to park north of Gateway Green, I’ve always parked on the NE Prescott overpass. It only takes a couple of minutes to ride across Maywood Park and the odds of getting accosted by an irate busy body is significantly lower.

doper
Guest
doper

I’ve been accosted by a busybody on that very same overpass. the interaction was creepy enough that I (and my kids) decided to move south and travel over needles, glass,and trash via the transit center. just seemed safer. after I got home, I called the city and asked about the legality of parking on an unsigned overpass. surprisingly, the city claimed that it is technically not legal to park there purely because overpasses aren’t designed to withstand the loads of parked vehicles. seemed a bit obtuse, but I had a wonderful conversation with the city’s representative.

lvc
Guest
lvc

LOL. That guy at the city who answered the phone is certainly full of something. There is no way, no how that they built a overpass wide enough to easily accommodate 4 lanes of traffic but then only designed to support 2 lanes. Remember under the Moses Plan Prescott was supposed to be a freeway? Fun fact, ASCE-7 live loads for parking garages is only 40 pounds per square foot, same as a house. One of the AASHTO live load requirements works out to be 64 psf.

Mark smith
Guest
Mark smith

Man, I hope nobody parks on that overpass…that might just be the end of it…

David Hampsten
Guest
David Hampsten

Maywood Park is a good lesson on how an unincorporated neighborhood can divert a major freeway project AND benefit from it. The city was created in the late 1970s at a time when Portland’s city boundary was still more than a half-mile away. The lower-middle-class residents of that time wanted to block the freeway altogether (think Rose Quarter), but ODOT decided to do a deep cut instead, to the point that residents can’t hear the traffic. The freeway goes through part of the city but without providing local access, so in consequence the city collects “taxes” annually from ODOT that largely pays for the annual police bill from the County, while ODOT maintains the pathway/park through the city.

Portland annexed the surrounding neighborhoods between 1986 and 1991.

Except for those living along 102nd and on Prescott, every resident has a septic sewer rather than a sewer line hooked into Portland, hence the need for large yards.

Baibug
Guest
Baibug

They only maintain the path, Maywood Park actuall pays fot and maintains the greenway areas of the path. So when people on bikes ride the across grass or up the berm area and leaves ruts and break sprinkler heads Maywood Park has to pay to have them repaired. So when other bikers see this behavior of disrespect why do none of them say a single thing. I heard 1 person ask a man and his son to please stay off the grass and the man’s reply was its just grass.

drs
Guest
drs

There’s an easy and obvious solution. Maywood Park should install meters and charge to park on the streets. They can use the revenue to contract parking enforcement or hire a parking enforcement staff. They can issue permits to residents.

Fred
Guest
Fred

You’re right, drs, but it’s oh so much more fun to become irate and leave fliers on cars.

Fred Bartleby
Guest
Fred Bartleby

Meter readers, a ticketing system, etc? That would take a ton of bureaucracy and wouldn’t generate anywhere near enough revenue to be sustainable. What will more likely happen is a signed no parking zone and a contract with a towing company. Sounds pretty effective, too.

squareman
Subscriber

That would still take a costly bureaucratic system to support it – not as large, but still costly. There would have to be an official records system around it for a start, which requires official contact points and such – requiring either office hours or electronic means of making contact (or both). So there’s that overhead too. Considering Maywood Park doesn’t even have a city hall or any official bureaucratic space, are they prepared to handle that? Would they be able to offload much of that onto Multnomah County and the Sheriff to enforce – and would those agencies abide? Would they be required to? I guess these are all questions for the Maywood Park residents to decide.

drs
Guest
drs

I live in a townhouse with a small HOA. We have a standing contact with a towing company to remove illegally parked vehicles. Cars are towed at owner expense. It’s quite cheap for the HOA.

drs
Guest
drs

Paid parking is incredibly lucrative. It’s what funds a large portion of pbot.

EP
Guest
EP

Oh, Maywood… They used to complain about the lawlessness on the path, now it’s too many families biking with kids on the path, people riding bikes on the grass in the park, and vehicles making U-turns in the street! Oh the humanity!

I can’t help but think that this is a very vocal minority of retirees that live right there and now have something to get themselves worked up about. This is similar to how residents on Thurman near Forest Park would complain about bikers, then it was the trail runners, now it’s the dog walkers. It’s always something!

If I lived on Maywood place, I would set up a vending machine for inner tubes, energy bars, and cold drinks. Maybe even offer quick bike tuneups. You know, go the whole other way with the thing and be welcoming and inclusive to people. I’d be thrilled if my neighborhood had lots of people on bikes

Sorry Maywood, the city around you keeps growing and you can’t escape it. This change is good. Embrace it!

FDUP
Guest
FDUP

Maywood Park has another unique distinction – Because they are not part of the city, they did not hook up to East Portland sewer project in the 90s, and the homes in this neighborhood are still using groundwater-polluting septic systems.

drs
Guest
drs

Why that’s allowed by the DEQ for a city with a population of around 1,000 in this day and age is beyond me.

David Hampsten
Guest
David Hampsten

Homes along 102nd and along Prescott are in fact hooked up, but not the others. The amount of ground water pollution produced by the individual homes is relatively minor, especially compared to the nearby agriculture within the City of Portland.

Tony Jordan (Contributor)
Subscriber

If parking congestion is a concern then Maywood Park should add pay stations and let people pay to park in their city. I’m sure they can think of all sorts of ways to use the revenue.

Fred Bartleby
Guest
Fred Bartleby

All that bureaucracy wouldn’t be sustainable. Realistically they’ll likely just enact a No Parking Zone all along Maywood Pl and hire a company like Retriever to aggressively tow vehicles that ignore it.

Karl Dickman
Guest
Karl Dickman

Flyering cars like this is illegal.

Fred
Guest
Fred

No, Karl, it’s not illegal. It’s free speech – however annoying it may be.

squareman
Subscriber
PdxPhoenix
Guest
PdxPhoenix

IN Portland, [16.70.510] apparently… Maywood Park might be different

Tiana
Guest
Tiana

Maybe if the approach from the south wasn’t so sketchy more people would use it instead of reverting to driving and parking in Maywood park? Personally, I’m not willing to ride with my kids to GG from the south. Maybe PP&R could work on making that route feel safer.

Nick LaRue
Guest
Nick LaRue

Same goes for approach from the North

Ted G
Guest
Ted G

If Jonathan is still pondering the benefit of the comments section, he should have a read through these comments and think about the likelihood of someone adding a comment that does not align with all the comments posted so far. I thought about posting something but won’t because there is no point.

This is a perfect example an echo chamber..

drs
Guest
drs

Contrary to your assertion, I see a diversity of points of view expressed in the comments on this article, ranging from those that say that people should be able to park on the maywood streets without restriction and the locals should just deal with it to those that argue that maywood should be able to restrict people from parking on the street. If you see complete alignment in the points that have been made here, I would argue that you aren’t looking hard enough.

Ted G
Guest
Ted G

The common thread I saw (more diverse comments of chimed in at this point) was the blaming of the MP residents and expecting them to “deal with it” either by accepting their new reality or change their parking rules. The earlier responses showed zero empathy for what they are experiencing and no accountability for how cyclists actions are affecting them. There is always a rationalization for doing the thing that suits you regardless of how that choice affects others.

Dean
Guest

The earlier responses showed zero empathy for what they are experiencing and no accountability for how cyclists actions are affecting them.

If seeing families with young children riding bikes and having fun affects you adversely, I suggest you reevaluate your stance on life. How am I supposed to be empathetic to that? What specific hardship have you endured? I am willing to discuss that. But also, Ted, you drive your car on our streets and you’re fine with it. Why can’t I bike/drive on your streets?

drs
Guest
drs

I, for one, think the frustrations of the residents of maywood park are valid. Portland has created a very attractive park and pbot and the parks bureau should have anticipated the parking problem it would create. They should have worked with maywood park to come up with a parking management strategy in advance, because the current situation was foreseeable. But I don’t expect Portland to do anything to actively manage parking in maywood park and I don’t think it is Portland’s sole responsibility to do so.

Even if all of bike Portland readers collectively come to the conclusion that it is a bad idea to park on the streets of maywood park, that isn’t going to stop others from doing so. And I’m fairly certain that it isn’t just Portland residents that are driving to the park and parking on the street, anyway.

At this point, it seems like a system of signs, fees and enforcement is going to reduce the impacts of people parking on the street. Do you see another solution?

AW
Guest
AW

For what it’s worth, I’d like to hear your opinion on the topic. My personal thoughts are still mostly aligned with the echo chamber. I come to this discussion in good faith. I am trying to see it from other perspectives. Please share your thoughts.

EEE
Guest
EEE

It is an odd echo to me, because it’s CAR traffic and CAR parking that the residents don’t want. But, the vacuous NIMBY epithets fly around as though a community shouldn’t band together to reduce car traffic through its neighborhood. I rode through there last Friday and it was an almost comical line of fancy SUVs with shiny bike racks parked there. It was definitely a bustling linear staging area — a shell of the former serenity. Actually, we used the street there because there were so many people milling about the path. No parking, not just permit parking, seems like a great idea to me. Is it really that inconvenient to park farther from that on-ramp to the park? That stretch of the I205 path through Maywood Park is a nice release valve to the bleakness of the other sections and is really the crown jewel of that path, do we really have to screw it up with more cars?

PS
Guest
PS

Tiny city carves out a pretty nice area surrounded by other hilariously mismanaged city. Mismanaged city in an effort to evidence their mismanagement, picks such a great site for the hardcore riders of PDX that there is no feasible way to provide parking, but all the hardcore riders say they will ride to the site anyway. Mismanaged city allows bike facility to turn into campground, then spends millions to improve it again into something people actually want to use, but due to mismanagement the areas to access it by bike are dystopian hellscapes and everyone drives instead. Other city is the only reasonably close, nice, safe area to park and ride to mismanaged city’s riding facility, but due to the mentality of residents of mismanaged city, they’re the bad guys. Got it.

Harvey Winfrey
Guest
Harvey Winfrey

I’ve always looked at Maywood with envy. I live right next door in the Gateway area and the decline here is just crushing. I can fully understand why Maywood residents don’t want our Portland standard of living.

Eric H
Guest
Eric H

My nomination for comment of the week goes to this one.

Cyclekrieg
Subscriber
Cyclekrieg

A little different thought here: don’t be jerk. Right or wrong the neighbors don’t want you on the roads adjacent to their homes. So go somewhere else. This is not rocket science. “Ride to your ride” means you can find multiple methods of getting to a trail, not that some deity granted you the ability do whatever to get as close as you can to trail, others be damned.

Before someone gets all, ‘Its public roads’, please remember that as a cyclist, you are a rolling billboard. How you are act and those actions are perceived either help or hurt our cause. If you don’t think this article and the ‘I’ll park where I want’ comments aren’t being shared among the anti-mountain biking cabal in Portland as a “reason” not to have local MTB access, you are naïve.

Are the neighbors here being a bit NIMBY? Yep. Are we all a bit NIMBY about various things? Yep. So let’s just cool our jets & go ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ and follow the direction.

Dean
Guest

Who’s saying “I’ll park where I want” exactly? I was saying “this isn’t creating any problems, parking scarcity isn’t an issue (they have an entire side of the street dedicated to them already as well as driveways), and I don’t understand what the problem is”. Do I get to decide that people can’t park in my neighborhood? No. I also live on a bike boulevard and have to deal with people speeding down it in cars (undoubtedly some of them Maywood Park residents due to my proximity) when I’m riding with my kids and it sucks. But it’s a public road, and there’s nothing I can do about it so I just deal with it.

I hear what you’re saying about representing off-road cyclists and I do my absolute best to be a good steward and I leave things cleaner than when I got there. But we have already cleaned up the bike path. We have trash pick-up days. Due to us mountain bikers, that area is becoming far less sketchy in general. We are bending over backwards already to be like “hey we are a positive community!” and yet we are still begging for scraps and have one public trail system in the entire city that we can ride. I don’t think me being like “OK I’ll put my kids at risk to please the NIMBY’s!” is going to change that. But I could be wrong.

Cyclekrieg
Subscriber
Cyclekrieg

Actually, you said you would ignore the parking recommendations (i.e. park wherever you wanted) in your post to the Gateway Green FB group. Several times, in fact, to Linda (the woman who worked her friggin’ butt off to make this happen). Quote, “I’m ignoring it and suggest you do the same” and “That’s absolute xenophobic rubbish” and “I was actually wanting to know if there is any legitimate reason we shouldn’t park in Maywood Park… [a]nd thus far all the data I have gathered has pointed to a resounding ‘no’.”

Here is the thing. We, as individuals, don’t get to decide how public land is used. But we, as a member of the republic’s politic can through local political action. If you are a resident of Maywood Park, by all means, lobby and politic for whatever changes you want. If you aren’t, then its not your place to impose on others. Most people learn that at a young age – “Eat whatever you are served if you are the guest” or “Don’t take other kids’ toys”, etc.

Making this all the more important are 2 points: 1) there is a ongoing plan to address and 2) the need for Portland to catch up to the rest of the country when it comes to MTB access. In both situations, the actions of very small minority can have negative consequences. That is true of parking in Maywood Park or poaching trails.

Its great you want to be a good steward. Here is simple way you can do that: follow the rules, follow the suggestions and follow the best practices – even if you think they are stupid. The people who created this resource have asked those that use it to do certain things. Let’s respect them and do those things they have asked us to show that we (as a group & individuals) can be trusted with larger gifts in the future.

Dean
Guest

“Eat whatever you are served if you are the guest”

Fine – let’s use that analogy. In this case, the “guests” are more often guests of ours though. And when they are our guests, we treat them well and let them drive on our roads and park on public right of ways. But in the vastly smaller number of times we are their guests, they are terrible hosts and complain about it and try to figure out ways to prevent the relationship from being two-sided. This is not an equitable relationship.

There are no jobs in Maywood Park. There is no industry there. They are 100% using our roads and our industry while saying they are some “independent” city and it’s absolutely ridiculous. They can’t even get groceries without being our “guests”. Does that seem balanced in any way?

Its great you want to be a good steward. Here is simple way you can do that: follow the rules, follow the suggestions and follow the best practices – even if you think they are stupid. The people who created this resource have asked those that use it to do certain things. Let’s respect them and do those things they have asked us to show that we (as a group & individuals) can be trusted with larger gifts in the future.

I really dislike the idea that we have to grovel to be bestowed “larger gifts in the future”. This wasn’t a “gift”. Where do you think funding came from? Do drivers have to grovel to have roads built? Do pedestrians grovel for sidewalks? Do people grovel for public parks? Also I do follow the rules. I’ve been looking at alternative routes. It looks like I will be putting my kids in increased danger to try to appease these elites, while they use my streets and don’t think twice about it. I’m just not happy about it.

cmh89
Guest
cmh89

How you are act and those actions are perceived either help or hurt our cause.

Are motorist “rolling billboards” for other motorist? Motorist don’t hate cyclist for any rational reason and there is no amount of “good behavior” that will make motorist hate pedestrians or cyclist any less. Motorist care about one group thing and that is themselves. They hate other motorist too if they are engaging in the same dangerous behavior.

Mark smith
Guest
Mark smith

Man, we should just eat the crumbs from the kings table? Eh fellow pauper!

plm
Guest
eawriste
Guest
eawriste

It’s sketchy, filled with garbage, and pretty muddy, but that’s how I get there.

EP
Guest
EP

I’ve been going that way for years. It used to be all big chunks of rock and RR ballast. Then, during GG construction, the road was made better, but then it turned into a mudpit. Now, they cut away the rocky slope under the bridge, and added this terraced dirt. Looks like most of the excavation is done and roadway construction is next. I hope, hope, hope, they keep some part of it accessible/usable by bikes. As the bermstyle article points out, it’s a long, unsafe ride to get around this area. Letting people park there and ride up to GG would help with Maywood issues, too. I think the bigger problem is with staging and construction for the Better Red project.

“After reaching out through official channels, we’ve found that the ongoing construction is actually being performed by Portland Parks & Recreation. (PP&R) as a maintenance entrance for PP&R and TriMet workers as well as emergency vehicle access to the park.”

Brian
Guest
Brian

Given how difficult it has been to get off-road cycling in any capacity it seems like a good idea to work with the residents and find a solution, especially when those who voluntarily worked their asses off for many years to make this park happen are asking us to do so.
If driving is our best option, do we need to park as closely as possible to the park? What if we use that pleasant neighborhood as a warm-up/warm-down ride between our cars and the park? What would the neighbors (or cyclists) suggest as a parking option on the North side that would allow people with children to safely and easily access the park via their neighborhood? Let’s find an agreeable solution for both sides and communicate it versus this back and forth finger pointing that continually gets us nowhere in this area.

eawriste
Guest
eawriste

Hey Brian, I have little patience for people who believe public space should be dedicated to them solely for the purpose of private property storage. This is why I think ALL parking should have a price. But yeah you got a point: this applies to people who drive to places and park as well–even if they’re sometime-cyclists.

Access to the green is tough, particularly for families trying to get kids to the pump track. So perhaps the construction access road from 92nd/Frontage should get some attention? The fundamental attribution error of generalizing based on one example is still a pretty strong cultural phenomenon vis a vis cyclists, so ignoring the problem won’t help the perception of mtb culture.

drs
Guest
drs

Absolutely agree that all public parking should be tolled.

Brian
Guest
Brian

I totally agree and completely see both sides (I take my 11 year old there), and wonder if there are bigger things to for all of us to consider. The next time a mtb trail/park is proposed I can already hear it…”Sure, and look what happened at Maywood.” It may be ridiculous, but it’s what we deal with here. I’d rather be able for the cycling community to say…”See what happened at Maywood when “x” occurred.”

eawriste
Guest
eawriste

Yep, most of the sentiment is unfounded, particularly from a trail research POV. Any time someone argues bikes cause environmental harm, 1) become friends because rapport over all else is how you change ideas 2) share the research, which suggests no difference in impact between trail modes.

Mark smith
Guest
Mark smith

Eh, no because what they want is complete scorched earth and land only for them. Roads are about access . Sorry the access is more than their front door. If they don’t like it, move. There are lots of places that are far from a trail.

Baibug
Guest
Baibug

Trimet park and ride on Sandy Blvd, parallels the 205 and bike path

EP
Guest
EP

Baibug, have you recently (or ever) walked or ridden on the 205 path north of Maywood? It’s two super sketchy sections back to back with the tunnel and the bridge and all the accompanying problems.

Alain L.
Guest
Alain L.

As other commenters have noted, we’re seeing high demand for GG’s facilities, all the more reason to create similar opportunities/facilities for riding trails in other parts of the city. I’ve parked my car on this Maywood street in order to ride at GG. Riding the ~9 miles from my house on city streets on a trail bike with long-slack geometry and knobby tires is taxing. And takes 40-50 minutes each way. It is no more convenient or faster for me to ride down to the MAX and east to GG. Hence, the reason so many drive. I’d much prefer to bike a shorter distance to trails located closer to my neighborhood. How about riding on the yet un-made trails north of Skidmore Bluffs and in “Dog Bowl” Park?

Steve C
Guest
Steve C

They can do this if they want, it’s their “city”. They basically want a gated community, with all the positives and negatives that entails.

I don’t like the passive aggressive note leaving. Just make a law or rule or whatever and stick to it. I might just park in front of their houses just for fun if they put no parking signs adjacent to the 205 path.

Portland and Gateway Green designers/promoters should have known this was going to happen. Access both for users and for emergency vehicles is very bad at GG, especially so to the south. I usually ride there, but I had a friend crash hard one time and it was extremely difficult to get them out and to a car (we ended up using the Maywood Park exit)

Baibug
Guest
Baibug

Up at the southend of Maywood Place there is alreadu signage on the house side of the street permit only, yet people have parked on that side, people do not care to follow signs that are posted

Matt S.
Guest
Matt S.

We build apartments with no parking and we have parking issues. We build awesome bike facilities and have parking issues. People say they will not drive but they do. We’re a bunch of vegetarians that secretly love to eat meat.

Mark smith
Guest
Mark smith

The root of this issue is homelessness which nobody wants to say.

Matt S.
Guest
Matt S.

Absolutely. Family’s don’t want to park in the area where they have to ride past camps and needles. The Maywood Park folk I imagine are ultimately worried they’re going to have entrenched campers like you see in the Laurelhurst neighborhoods of parking gets too out of control.

drs
Guest
drs

I agree that’s part of it. But it’s also partly due to the fact that parking is plentiful and free in Maywood Park near Gateway Green. Even if the 205 bike path was paved with gold and the max dropped people off in the middle of the park and there weren’t any people camping on the trail at all, some would still opt to drive to the park and store their cars on the street. If parking is not made expensive, difficult, or illegal in Maywood Park, people will definitely continue to park there.

Charley
Guest
Charley

Are you arguing that people are afraid to point out that homelessness is causing livability issues that relate to this parking problem?

It’s not true that homelessness is a cause “… which nobody wants to say.” It’s demonstrably false. Plenty of people are saying that homelessness has made the 205 path “undesirable.” Take a look at the comment section of this article.

Maybe you’re right, in a narrow sense that they don’t want to say it, because they do not want us to have the social problem of homelessness. But that’s kinda like claiming “no one wants to say ‘I’m dying of cancer.’” In which case they’d rather not have to say this because the circumstances truly suck. In that case you’d be correct but trivially so, and in that case the point would not be that people are censoring themselves.

bjorn
Guest
bjorn

Realistically the main reason for additional litter in Maywood Park is the grouchy couple littering pieces of paper all over the place.

Matt
Guest
Matt

The approach to the south means I have to watch my kids in a busy parking lot while I get the bikes off the rack and get everybody ready, then shepherd them across light-rail tracks, past homeless camps, trash overflowing onto the trail, and a really sketch blind corner to go under a narrow underpass, then through a no-shoulder fenced section of path over the freeway….or I can park in a nice neighborhood, let the kids run on the (non-private property) grass, then bike a shorter and more pleasant distance. No brainer!

Baibug
Guest
Baibug

So Matt your ok with the destruction of the grass where people ride over it and make ruts and break off sprinkler heads? But fyi the bike path (asphalt portion only) belongs to ODOT the greenway is Maywood Parks, and they pay to maintain it not ODOT, not PBOT or the Parks Bureau.

SurleyDave
Subscriber
SurleyDave

It’s worth noting that if Maywood Park does pass some sort of parking law you can then park on 102nd, near NE Beech. 102nd is a Portland street, and not under the jurisdiction of Maywood Park. It’s only a block farther than parking on NE Maywood Place next to the bike trail.

I live in Parkrose, and know several people in Maywood Park who don’t care at all about the parking situation. The Maywood city council and “concerned citizens” sound like people who don’t acknowledge their precious little arrangement. I park over there to ride a couple times a week, and am very happy that GG is open, and prefer to ride in from the north. I also haven’t seen any trash related to bikers in that area, but have seen the grass get worn down in the strip between the street and the path. We could do better than to walk through it.

AH
Guest
AH

I’m a resident of Maywood Park. Yes, parking is a concern to many here. However, my biggest issue is how fast people coming into the neighborhood drive through our streets, especially on Beech, which is a relatively short street. We don’t have sidewalks in our neighborhood, so we walk and play in our streets. With the amount of additional traffic and so many who are driving way too fast, it doesn’t feel as safe for pedestrians trying to walk in our own neighborhood. That’s one major point this article didn’t even address, but it’s one that’s extremely important to all who live in Maywood Park. I’m sure the parking issues will be addressed and hopefully will be agreeable to everyone. But in the meantime, please slow down when driving in our neighborhood.

gtrain
Subscriber
gtrain

Ride your MTB with your family to the MAX, take the MAX to Gateway Green, get off and ride to the park. No car or parking needed, problem solved. The Red, Blue, and Green lines all go to Gateway.

Owl
Guest
Owl

I am empathetic to the concerns of Maywood Park residents and the people who park there to access Gateway Green from the north. It’s safer and more scenic. But what I see as the big picture “take away” here is the 205 multipath is unpleasant and downright dangerous in most of it’s stretch. If it was safer and more attractive (at least from the Gateway Transit Center to GG) the small neighborhood of Maywood Park would not have to bear the burden of being the primary parking lot for this amazing park. I think that if the the 205 multipath was safe, it would encourage more biking and less driving all over the city – with it’s many access points- and serve as an outdoor recreational/alt transportation backbone for East Portland.