Portland-based nonprofit Bike Loud PDX is not taking the death of Sarah Pliner lightly. The group has been working nonstop since last Tuesday’s tragic collision to make sure something is done to make the intersection where she died safer.
On Wednesday, they are asking everyone to join them for a demonstration on SE 26th and Powell Blvd. The plan, hatched by Bike Loud along with fellow nonprofits The Street Trust and Oregon Walks is for event attendees to stand in the street to make a point about the vulnerability of bicycle riders and the need for more safe space. They also want to increase pressure on the Oregon Department of Transportation to add back cycling infrastructure they removed in 2018.
“Gather in solidarity with us to demand that ODOT restore the bicycle facilities on SE 26th to the state they were (or better) prior to their forced removal in 2018,” a Bike Loud statement sent out this afternoon reads. “We need hundreds of you to come together and stand arm in arm to reclaim this street space for its most vulnerable users. In solidarity, we will demand that ODOT immediately restore the safety infrastructure they forced out.”
This won’t be the first human-protected bike lane Portlanders have seen. In September 2017 over 100 people showed up on Naito Parkway as part of a protest against the removal of a protected bike lane that was first only a seasonal installation. It was made permanent three years later.
Wednesday’s event will start at 3:30. Interested participants are being asked to sign up ahead of time.
In related news, two Oregon State Representatives and one State Senator have organized a forum on Powell Blvd October 20th. Representatives Rob Nosse and Karin Power, along with Senator Kathleen Taylor will host the Community Safety Forum at the Cleveland High School Auditorium at 6:00 pm. According to an event flyer that’s been shared with neighborhood groups, the event will be a, “a community discussion with state and local agencies focusing on solutions for improving safety.”
Representatives from ODOT, PBOT, TriMet and Portland Public Schools are slated to attend. See more information on our calendar.