Reader says Dutch Bros employees intentionally park in SE Division St bike lane

A vehicle parked in the bike lane in front of Dutch Bros on SE Division at 137th. (Photo: BikePortland reader)

A reader named Michelle is peeved at the owners of a Dutch Bros outlet on SE Division and 137th that is intentionally blocking the bike lane. She also shared photos (more below) of a large, white SUV parked in the bike lane with several blue, Dutch Bros-branded traffic cones to mark off the spot.

Michelle also sent an email to the City of Portland Office of Equity and Human Rights (which she cc’d to BikePortland):

Dear Dutch Bros, Portland City Office of Equity and Human Rights, and Jonathan Maus with Bike Portland,

The Dutch Bros at 13640 SE Division St. is intentionally blocking off the bike lane. I asked them to stop. They refused. They are blocking the bike lane off with traffic cones and their personal vehicles on purpose so that customers don’t park there, park badly, and then make it very hard to get out of the drive thru. They are doing this to make their own business run more smoothly. They said this to me.

I am a biker and a disabled person. I bike because I can’t drive because of my eyesight/spatial deficiencies due to brain injury. When I bike, I often bike with my 6 year old child in a trailer. When the employees of Dutch Bros block the bike lane they force me (and all other bikers) into a busy artery (Division) that is known for traffic deaths. The lady that owned my condo just a block away from this Dutch Bros before me was killed by two drunk drivers crossing the road at 138th and Division (please see this news article about her murder). 

Because of how close I am to Dutch Bros my only option is to either cross where Loan was murdered or cross at 135th to get off Division. Because I live so close to Division I *have* to walk or bike here, I can’t avoid it if I want to go to the park and have a life. The crossing at 135th is quicker and safer–as long as Dutch Brothers doesn’t illegally block the bike lane. 

I ask for reasonable accommodation for the city of Portland and for the Dutch Bros to not block the bike lane in front of Dutch Bros. It would include enforcing ORS 811.550.

I also ask for a reasonable accommodation for either the city or Dutch Bros (or both) put up signage warning their customers in cars about pedestrians and bikes. Passing the area in front of the Dutch Bros at 13640 SE Division St is dangerous not just because Dutch Bros employees are intentionally blocking it, but also because the customers zoom in and out and don’t look for bikes and pedestrians. This puts my life in danger and my child’s life, and I don’t have the choice to drive a car. 

Thank you,

Michelle, Portland Community Member

So far Michelle hasn’t heard back from anyone at the city about her concern. We’ll report back if and when this gets cleared up.

By the way, when you see something like this, the best thing to do is contact PBOT’s dispatch hotline at 503-823-5195 so they can send someone out.


UPDATE, 3:00 pm: PBOT saw our story and says, “We are sending our lead parking enforcement officer to inquire about this issue with the company. If it is occurring, we will ask them to stop.”

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor)

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor)

Founder of BikePortland (in 2005). Father of three. North Portlander. Basketball lover. Car owner and driver. If you have questions or feedback about this site or my work, feel free to contact me at @jonathan_maus on Twitter, via email at maus.jonathan@gmail.com, or phone/text at 503-706-8804. Also, if you read and appreciate this site, please become a supporter.

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Michael Mann
Michael Mann
1 year ago

I am NOT defending Dutch Bros on this, and personally hope they’re fined, as this is obviously intentional on their part.

However, it points out an issue that at least needs to be considered as we move forward with expanding Trimet FX bus lines and the infrastructure that supports Rapid Transit (which I fully support.)

I live on SE 84th. My mom lives in Gresham just off Division at Birdsdale. I ride a bike for nearly all my transportation. She drives everywhere. And she’s regularly telling me how much the business owners along Division hate the new infrastructure out there. If you take a trip along Division you can see why. Each business has their own parking lot, and there are a lot of fast food/coffee businesses that I imagine are dependent upon drive-through service, and (according to my mom) they’re taking a significant financial hit.

My own opinion is that these are the unfortunate growing pains of the slow, painful death of car-dependent communities and economies. It’s one thing to improve transit along a Portland core street that’s pedestrian friendly with blocks of storefronts (think Hawthorne). But Division is not that street. And as someone who regularly attends the 82nd Avenue Coalition meetings, I can tell you that what’s happened to Division is coming to 82nd (without the bike lanes), and I’m pretty sure there are going to be a lot of pissed off business owners who suddenly find the left turn lane replaced my concrete medians and trees, and a bunch of the sidewalk parking lot curb cuts eliminated to improve pedestrian access.

In the long run these improvements make our streets safer and more accessible to people not in cars. But it will also mean some car-dependent businesses – especially drive throughs) will go out of business.

Michelle
Michelle
1 year ago
Reply to  Michael Mann

This.

All my neighbors with cars hate the new infrastructure. I’ve seen real safety issues for cars and if you’re not used to the way the roadway is then you might make a mistake and do something dangerous. The u turns are nuts.

I personally find the infrastructure better (particularly at 138th) on Division but that the problems have been squished out into the side roads which make the side road more dangerous.

When people do u turns or try to change direction they’ll often filter into side streets like 136th and Clinton. They go through there doing 50 mph. It’s fully going to kill somebody someday. I’ve written Mingus Mapps and the auditor’s office about it.

Dutch Bros and Taco Bell are definitely not going out of business, I’m more worried about a place like A-1 Hawk. The owners there are super nice and they’ve attended city hall to talk about this. Their parking lot is IMPOSSIBLE to get into now. I feel badly for them.

On 82nd Project:
I hope that Mapps will send out surveys to the people that frequent the new China Town on 82nd and really keep that demographic stable on 82nd. I used to live on 82nd and Hawthorne and then 82nd and Milton a time back. It’s so dangerous, the work needs done but there should be a way to really be respectful and not displace, even cater to the safety needs of, the Asian community.

matt
matt
1 year ago
Reply to  Michelle

Another reason why cities need more roundabouts instead of stoplight intersections.

steve scarich
steve scarich
11 months ago
Reply to  matt

Almost impossible in most older cities. Just not enough room. Over here in Bend, the roundabouts are everywhere. Of course, they are very cyclist unfriendly, but that is another topic. But, when they are built, it is amazing the amount of land they consume. Just subjectively, I would say it more than doubles the land footprint. Pretty hard to find that much room in a city like Portland. When they are installed in more rural venues (which is also becoming very common), they probably consume four or five times the land, because they encourage much higher speeds and therefore need more gradual curves.

Michael Mann
Michael Mann
1 year ago
Reply to  Michelle

APANO is heavily involved with the plans on 82nd. The Asian community has a significant voice in what’s being planned and the construction already underway.

Jenni Sinclair
Jenni Sinclair
1 year ago
Reply to  Michael Mann
John
John
1 year ago
Reply to  Michael Mann

they’re taking a significant financial hit

This is the part I don’t believe. Business owners will take whatever scapegoat they can find and point the finger at that for why they aren’t doing as well. I don’t think they can make a causal connection. They will say it with any type of pedestrian or bus infrastructure. See: the recent-ish Hillsdale improvements.

Michelle
Michelle
1 year ago
Reply to  John

While I believe safety is more important than business it is fact that some businesses have been badly hurt by the road design. Potential customers say no to whims if the whims are hard to navigate. People don’t want to do a u turn and wait 5 minutes to get across the road. That means whim and spur of the moment customers are almost cut in half for most stores along Division. That’s decidedly significant. I don’t see how I can honestly deny the ramifications, even though my priorities are different. I’d be upset if I were them. I’d consider relocating if I were them.

Ryan
Ryan
1 year ago
Reply to  Michael Mann

+1 to this comment and Michelle’s.

I live near Holgate & 122nd, and only ride Division if there’s a place I need to get to on the street. It’d be, at best, my 4th choice for getting east/west, which is saying something since there aren’t that many options to cross 205.

The road cross section/treatment isn’t consistent throughout the corridor, which makes it confusing for drivers and cyclists. Some blocks have a bike lane buffered by parking, others just have the plastic barrier with candle sticks bolted to the pavement (and those segments are, of course, usually strewn with a bunch of gravel, glass and other crap that you can’t avoid due to the plastic barriers…). Some intersections have a right turn lane signal to protect bike traffic, others don’t. The lanes are often blocked by cars (like in this story, which is an egregious example). Even when cars are parked correctly, they block the sight lines between the bike lane and the other vehicle lanes, which is dangerous given the number of driveways onto the street. The medians are also haphazard; some segments have barriers that prevent turns, but other areas have optimistically painted solid lines that only prevent turns if the driver choses to obey. The road is probably less deadly now than it was with the old unprotected painted lanes, but it still doesn’t feel safe.

Apart from the inconsistent design, there is a lot of signage and markings that the driving populations in outer SE aren’t familiar with. That’ll hopefully change over time, but it’s a rough transition. Another part of the problem though (my opinion) is the lack of cyclists using the infrastructure. The right turn red lights make sense if you’re stopped at one and see cyclists going through the intersection on your right. Drivers start to ignore the signal when they’re stopped for seemingly no reason at all. Same with bad parking behavior. The pavement next to the curb appears as wasted space if you never see anyone riding, so what’s the harm in parking there?

I’m not saying that bad driver behavior is excusable, or the fault of cyclists for not riding enough along Division. Even though I want to see more cyclists riding to make it safer, I actively avoid being one of them whenever I’m able. Overall, I’ve become really pessimistic about bike facilities along roads like Powell, Division, 82nd, etc. We need safe facilities on awful roads, but that isn’t going to get people on bikes the way that creating and improving a network of trails, bike boulevards, and neighborhood greenways will.

blumdrew
blumdrew
1 year ago
Reply to  Michael Mann

The infrastructure on Division absolutely does not support rapid transit. The difference in run time on the far east leg of the journey is barely different. The 7:32 AM bus leaving Gresham (central) is currently scheduled to arrive at 8:10 AM to the Cesar Chavez stop for a runtime of 38 minutes. Back in 2021, the 7:25 AM bus leaving Gresham was scheduled to arrive at 8:06 AM to the Cesar Chavez stop for a runtime of 41 minutes. Pre-pandemic, the schedule between the stops was 7:21 AM to 8:06 AM (45 minutes), so a 7 minute improvement from 2019 (15%) is nothing to scoff at.

But it’s not rapid transit – not even close. Of the five main characteristics of Bus Rapid Transit, the FX2 fits maybe one – it does have some intersection treatments and mostly has signal priority. But there is no level boarding, there is no busway alignment, there is no offboard payment, and there is certainly no dedicated right of way.

Chris I
Chris I
1 year ago
Reply to  blumdrew

The FX2 is a great example to bring up whenever someone complains about MAX vs bus costs. This is what happens when you don’t go with a fully separated guideway.

PTB
PTB
1 year ago

First off, Dutch Bros is trash coffee. Yuck. In a city with incredible coffee choices, I will hear no reason as to why one would go there.

Second, with the rise of delivery options and a near total lack of parking enforcement, I take it as a given someone is gonna be parked in a bike lane somewhere anytime I ride my bike. If my route takes me down a commercial street, there’s gonna be a delivery driver parked in the bike lane. Hats sorta off to PBOT for their overhaul of outer Division, but there’s never not vehicles parked in the bike lane. Especially outside of the Asian market at 83rd and Division. ALWAYS cars parked in the bike lane.

Betsy Reese
Betsy Reese
1 year ago
Reply to  PTB

I do want to push back a bit on the contention that we have a “near total lack of parking enforcement”.

Not long ago I came across a parking patrol officer in the process of ticketing about 5 vehicles parked in the bike lane on Division St. just east of 82nd Ave. I doubled back to thank her, and when I did, she said, “I was afraid you were coming back to yell at me.” I told her she had another half a dozen vehicles parked in the bike lane west of 82nd, and she said she would ticket them, too.

With polite persistence, alot can be accomplished. I suggest that people make the calls, document with photos and notes the location and time of call, and then consistently follow up with Parking Patrol to find out the action taken.

Email or call Parking Patrol supervisor Donald Hunter at donald.hunter@portlandoregon.gov 503-823-6834 a few days later and ask what action was taken. They can track every call you have made to them with your phone number. While Donald’s personal style can be a bit crusty with advocates, he will give you the info. If not satisfied, keep pushing back, directly with him, or up the organizational ladder.

PTB
PTB
1 year ago
Reply to  Betsy Reese

I’ve also talked with Parking Cops and they’ve told me they can’t just roll around looking for parking infractions. They check parking meters, definitely, and will respond if you call in a Bad Parker, but they don’t just roam the city handing out endless tickets. And oh man, think of how many tickets they could hand out. The way it was explained to me it’s that they don’t want to be viewed as a cash cow for the city. In reality they would just be enforcing parking laws and hey, if they brings in a shit ton of revenue, so be it. Parking; Literally the easiest part of driving!

Middle of the Road Guy
Middle of the Road Guy
1 year ago
Reply to  PTB

Just do 10 tickets a day.

pierre delecto
pierre delecto
1 year ago
Reply to  PTB

Second, with the rise of delivery options and a near total lack of parking enforcement, I take it as a given someone is gonna be parked in a bike lane somewhere anytime I ride my bike.

Just about every commute I experience multiple cars blocking multiple bike lanes. This has become normalized behavior post-pandemic. And in my experience, the rudest people who park in bike lane are parents picking up their progeny from daycare or sports activities.

maxD
maxD
1 year ago
Reply to  pierre delecto

I think the rudest are the UBER/Lyft drivers and the food delivery people- they think nothing of blocking a bike for 5-15 minutes.

dw
dw
1 year ago
Reply to  PTB

I used to work out here and If anyone is in the area and needing a coffee, there’s a great food cart that does coffee called La Osita. It’s on 122nd and Market, so a little further away but definitely worth it to support a very local business. There’s also a Starbucks about a 10 minute walk West, and other in the Fred Meyer about 10 minutes East.

Steve C
Steve C
1 year ago
Reply to  dw

La Osita has plans to open a brick and mortar location on the new 80th Greenway at Taylor Ct. https://www.laositapdx.com/brickstarter

PacificSource
PacificSource
1 year ago
Reply to  PTB

has Bike Portland talked about this bike lane on Division and 83rd? I’ve looked it it many times and I can’t tell if the section is missing “no parking” signs or if cars are actually allowed to park there? I feel like its confusing for cars

Marissa R
Marissa R
1 year ago

Well I’d boycott Dutch Bros….but I don’t really like their coffee so I never go there. 🙂
Seriously though in a normal city this recurrning infraction would be noticed by traffic enforecment, a citation would be issued and the situation would be remedied. Yet in Portland this kind of stuff is just allowed to happen.

John DiLorenzo needed to sue the city on behalf of the disabled to get them to agree to keep our sidwalks clear, maybe we need to ask him to sue the city to keep our bike lanes clear?

Portland to clear sidewalk tents to settle suit with people with disabilities – OPB

Fred
Fred
1 year ago
Reply to  Marissa R

in a normal city this recurrning infraction would be noticed by traffic enforecment, a citation would be issued and the situation would be remedied. Yet in Portland this kind of stuff is just allowed to happen.

Amen, Marissa. Blocking bike lanes and sidewalks is a cash cow for most city gov’ts. CoP is strapped for money and can’t even milk this one. Pathetic.

Middle of the Road Guy
Middle of the Road Guy
1 year ago
Reply to  Fred

We’d get into Equity concerns about who is being ticketed, the amount, etc.

rick
rick
1 year ago

Drive-thrus are the problem and create more crashes.

John
John
1 year ago
Reply to  rick

Absolutely. The Starbucks near my house on MLK and Ainsworth is a really annoying and dangerous example. They have room for like three cars in a line in their lot, and the rest are constantly sort of trying to turn off Ainsworth in there when there isn’t room (so, waiting, blocking cars, who go around them unpredictably), or people who thought they could get in just stopped perpendicular to traffic. The entrance is close to MLK so you get drivers who though they could turn off MLK and go in the drive thru also stopped in the road. There is not much / any bike lane on Ainsworth there, but there is a bike signal for crossing MLK so you get treated to a deadly puzzle when you cross the road there in the morning.

Just get the hell out of your car, people! There is tons of street parking literally on that block around the corner, just get out and take a few steps, your body will thank you!

EP
EP
1 year ago
Reply to  John

Ugh, I used to have to deal with that a lot. Even thought about a late night yellow paint job on the NW curb between MLK and the entrance on Ainsworth. At least there are no parking signs there now to help daylight the intersection. That really is a horrible spot for a drive through. And of course people can’t be bothered to drive to another place or park and walk inside, instead they just clog traffic.

Middle o the Road Guy
Middle o the Road Guy
1 year ago
Reply to  John

Same thing happens at Popeyes.

Michelle
Michelle
1 year ago
Reply to  rick

There is DQ and Dutch Bros drive thru right beside each other on 136th and 137th. DQ has a much better layout for not blocking traffic because of more space between the drive thru window and the exit. They have a decent sized parking lot. Dutch Bros seems designed to impede traffic, you can kind of see just by the picture how dangerous it is to enter/exit at peak morning with the window so close to the exit.

M
M
1 year ago

I’d also guess that SUV is blocking the crosswalk from view, making the intersection more dangerous for pedestrians too.

John
John
1 year ago

Glad Michelle is doing something about this. In the mean time, isn’t there a place you can report parking violations to (with pictures)? Not that anyone will do anything, but just in case. I thought I heard about that, and I should really put the number/email in my phone so it’s ready.

Also I think anyone would be well within their rights to move the cones. Their debris left in the road, always safe to remove it. Not suggesting she personally do that, just saying. The SUV not so much I guess.

EDIT: 503-823-5195 / https://www.portland.gov/transportation/parking/report-illegally-parked-vehicle

Randi J
Randi J
1 year ago
Reply to  John

You can report at https://pdxreporter.org. You can also call. I’ve done both. Most of the time nothing happens although once I had a quick response when a car was blocking a fire hydrant. Still the Portland city motto should be changed to “the city that only occasionally works”

Call PBOT Parking Enforcement’s hotline

Be ready with location information, make and model, color, and license plate (if known). Staff are available and check voicemails regularly at the following times:

Monday – Friday: 6:15 a.m. – 11:15 p.m.
Saturday: 8:15 a.m. – 11:15 p.m.
Sunday: 8:45 a.m. – 11:15 p.m.
Outside of these times, you may report illegally parked vehicles to the Portland Police Bureau’s non-emergency line

Contact
PBOT Parking Enforcement

503-823-5195
Staff are available and check voicemails regularly at the following times: Monday – Friday: 6:15 a.m. – 11:15 p.m., Saturday: 8:15 a.m. – 11:15 p.m., and Sunday: 8:45 a.m. – 11:15 p.m.

EP
EP
1 year ago
Reply to  John

I’ve had good results calling the line and having cars get towed within an hour or two. Blocking a hydrant is a top priority and gets a tow, sometimes surprisingly fast. Blocking the sidewalk eventually gets them a ticket.

PacificSource
PacificSource
1 year ago
Reply to  EP

same, I’ve always had shockingly quick responses, even calling at really random times (like 7PM on a sunday)

Daniel Fuller
Daniel Fuller
1 year ago

Just another day in America’s Bicycle Capital™. I’m not on outer Division much, but the few times I’ve ridden there I’ve been disappointed to see so many vehicles blocking the bike lane.

J_R
J_R
1 year ago

Regarding the 3:00 pm update:

“:Ask them to stop.” Way to put the hammer down. That will show them!

The city should be required to relinquish its motto (The City that Works) when it so clearly doesn’t.

Amit Zinman
1 year ago
Reply to  J_R

Better to ask them to stop with a daily fine of $100

SD
SD
1 year ago

Looks like a good place for bollards or a concrete barrier.

Mark Remy
Mark Remy
1 year ago

“If it is occurring, we will ask them to stop.”

Hoo boy.

Michelle
Michelle
1 year ago
Reply to  Mark Remy

If it helps, they have stopped for now. I’m not going near to them because of anxiety and I’m also not wanting to make them uncomfortable. I just took the long way around them this morning and took a windy quiet road to school for the last day (walking). We were late and it was worth it. I just wanted Dutch Bros. to stop and was enraged at how they weren’t even thinking of the danger for others. They made it so clear they thought they had the legal right to block the bike lane, the cones even have the Dutch Bros logo and they were screaming at me for taking the pics of the white suv to make a complaint.

I told them to stop, I told them I’d file a complaint and request for reasonable accommodation. I told them straight out I was disabled and utilized the bike path often with my son and it put our lives in danger. I didn’t pull any surprise punches, I did exactly what I said I’d do.

I bring my son to swim lessons starting Monday and I’ll be riding my bike past them with trailer and little son on each return trip for several weeks. If there’s a problem I have to remove myself immediately and call the city. It’s the best, I’m so angry and I don’t need the stress and my son will be with me. They can’t be reasoned with if they do it again.

Graham
Graham
1 year ago

Ridiculous. I’m not a coffee drinker so I can’t comment on their quality but it’s a crappy thing to do.

Amit Zinman
1 year ago
Reply to  Graham

A coffee establishment is such a western white affluent thing. Even if I were a coffee drinker, I wouldn’t pay for overpriced coffee in a plastic single use bottle.

Middle o the Road Guy
Middle o the Road Guy
1 year ago
Reply to  Amit Zinman

Tea houses on the other hand…

PTB
PTB
11 months ago
Reply to  Amit Zinman

Noted, Amit. Thank you for you the knowledge about coffee shops. Coffee shops are for middle class or better white people. Coffee comes in plastic bottles. Even though you don’t drink coffee I can tell you know a lot about it.

dw
dw
1 year ago

I bike on Division to get to and from work every day and it’s very rare that there aren’t people parked in the bike lanes. Part of it is some substandard design where they didn’t put curbs in (yet?) but there is clearly space and it won’t block driveways. Even the curbs don’t discourage many drivers though; I see people hop the curb to park on in the bike lane, then walk though an empty parking lot to their destination. Sigh.

I honestly love the Division redesign. A lack of enforcement and maintenance is making what should be a really great facility difficult to use.

PacificSource
PacificSource
1 year ago
Reply to  dw

I love it too except the alarming amount of car drivers who turn on reds from 82nd from division even with all the “do not turn on red” signs. someone is going to get killed.

Michelle
Michelle
1 year ago
Reply to  PacificSource

Someone already has been killed (hit and run) on 122nd and Division for that exact reason. Turning on a do not turn light. I talked to somebody that saw it.

https://www.kgw.com/article/news/crime/pedestrian-killed-hit-and-run-crash-southeast-division-street-portland/283-a88c344e-b7f1-40c9-aed1-f2b58b701896#:~:text=The%20crash%20happened%20May%2024,but%20died%20at%20the%20hospital.

The whole of division from 122nd to 124th was closed off so right at bus stop time for Lincoln Park Elementary all the division traffic started speeding, speeding recklessly down 136th. It was so bad.

Myth Dispulsion
Myth Dispulsion
1 year ago
Reply to  PacificSource

There are bulb-outs possible as well as squaring the intersections to try to force the slow, square turns as opposed to rounder curving paths with the ubiquitous corner-cutting (already being fought now with left turn calming or “safety” extensions). Also, a bit of psychology might at least reduce the instances of motorists turning anyway: Why not have curbs and sidewalks on so-called “squared” intersection corners widen slightly leftward facing motorists to make them face a slight narrowing at the intersection?

EP
EP
1 year ago

Sadly the recent trend is to make square corners & curbs nice and rounded for trucks, and with a nice ADA ramp, so that there’s an even easier corner to drive over. All street corners need a big pole right at the apex of the curve so you can’t just run over it and the curb and up onto the sidewalk and into/over people.

dw
dw
1 year ago

Sorry for commenting twice – does anyone else see the irony in a place called “Dutch” Bros blocking the bike lane, given how well-known the Dutch are for their excellent bike infrastructure?

These Bros aren’t Dutch
These Bros aren’t Dutch
1 year ago
Reply to  dw

I think about this all the time. The Dutch don’t do drive thrus, and especially not drive thru coffee.

If you care about biking and transportation safety at all, do not support drive thrus.

pierre delecto
pierre delecto
1 year ago

Your belief that drive-throughs don’t exist in the Netherlands is pure fantasy.

comment image

Contrary to what is argued on this blog and on urbanist/NUMTOT social media, the vast majority of Dutch households own a car.
comment image

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/358798695_The_widespread_car_ownership_in_the_Netherlands

Cars – the transport mode chosen most often by the Dutch.

In 1992, 42% of Dutch households were car-free. By 2016 this had dropped to about a quarter. Car ownership has continued to increase since then. Higher car ownership leads to higher car usage. Almost anyone who can easily afford a car has one and there aren’t many people at all who choose to go without if they can afford one: Amongst people of average income, just 12% of households don’t have a car and that drops further to just 6% for high income households.

http://www.aviewfromthecyclepath.com/2019/08/the-car-free-myth-netherlands-is-great.html

blumdrew
blumdrew
1 year ago
Reply to  pierre delecto

26% of Dutch households being car free, and 73% having one or fewer is remarkable compared to the US where we have 8.5% of households being car free and 41% having one or fewer. It’s almost more common for a Dutch household to have no car (26%) than it is for a US household to have 3 or more cars (22%).

There are drive thrus in the Netherlands, but you’re kidding yourself if you think you could find a drive thru coffee joint like Dutch Bros within two miles or so of the city center like you can in Portland. Drive thrus are mostly relegated to the exurban fringe of the freeway exit.

The drive thru, automobile, and death on the road are ubiquitous in the US. They are not in the Netherlands, even if owning a car is relatively more common now than it was in 1992.

pierre delecto
pierre delecto
1 year ago
Reply to  blumdrew

within two miles or so of the city center like you can in Portland

2.6 miles:

comment image

https://www.google.com/maps/place/McDonald's/@52.4154433,4.9114868,121m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m6!3m5!1s0x47c6086eeb1ed5c5:0xa3148add3a95808d!8m2!3d52.4155651!4d4.9116759!16s%2Fg%2F1vbl6sm2?entry=ttu

The drive thru, automobile, and death on the road are ubiquitous in the US. They are not in the Netherlands, even if owning a car is relatively more common now than it was in 1992.

A truly excellent strawman. Thanks!.

blumdrew
blumdrew
1 year ago
Reply to  pierre delecto

It’s a fair cop, I didn’t really think to look on the other side of the canal from central Amsterdam. I would also note that particular McDonald’s is more like 3 mile from central Amsterdam (using the Royal Palace as my definition), and along an expressway exit.

Central Portland has this Burgerville drive thru (1.23 miles from City Hall), this Jack in the box (1.4 miles), this McDonalds (1.2 miles), this Taco Bell and Dutch Bros (1.3 miles), this Dutch Bros (1.1 miles), this Starbucks (1.1 miles), this Wendy’s (1.5 miles) that takes up a whole block, this Starbucks (1.6 miles), this McDonalds (1.6 miles), this Burger King (1.6 miles), this Taco Bell (1.7 miles), this Dutch Bros (1.8 miles), this Jack in the box (1.8 miles). This list could probably be longer too! I see two McDonalds within the A10 ring road that seem to have drive thrus in Amsterdam. That one at a highway exit, and this one also near a highway exit and near what looks like a shopping mall.

The drive thru is very rare in the urban parts of the Netherlands. It’s incredibly common here.

Lisa Caballero (Assistant Editor)
Editor
Reply to  blumdrew

Damn you are thorough!

pierre delecto
pierre delecto
11 months ago
Reply to  blumdrew

I never once claimed that Dutch cities had similar levels of drive-throughs. This is a strawman that you manufactured — likely because evidence of moderate levels of car-centrism in the Netherlands created cognitive dissonance.

The fact that the Netherlands is a car-centric society in no way means it’s as SUV-centric as the USA so please don’t create another strawman.

blumdrew
blumdrew
11 months ago
Reply to  pierre delecto

Dutch cities are just not car-centric though, and you are claiming that they are. The comparison of number of drivethrus within the central areas of Portland and Amsterdam is just one way to illustrate that. It’s not cognitive dissonance to implicitly compare all of those things to the reality of living in the US, what else do I have to compare to?

What does it mean to be car-centric? To mean, it means that having a car is your only option. That is just not true of functionally any place in the Netherlands. I have a friend who lived in Gronau (in Germany) and commuted to school in Enschede for a couple years. There are half-hourly trains that take 11 minutes and he lived maybe a 5 to 10 minute walk from the Gronau station. I think his University was in central Enschede – there is one another 5ish minute walk away. The quoted travel time (door to door) by Google is 22 minutes – while the drive is 16. I think he drove most of the time, but did bike or take the train on occasion as well. I recall most of his classmates did not have cars, and preferred to bike (though they all lived in Enschede rather than Gronau).

If you call somewhere like this “car-centric” I just cannot agree with you. It’s not. I’ve been there, and I promise you it’s not. If it were car-centric, the train would be unreliable to a fault, or non-existent. If it were car-centric, it would be unrealistic to bike for almost everyone (rather than being fairly nice, albeit a bit longer than most people like for a commute at 40 minutes).

pierre delecto
pierre delecto
11 months ago
Reply to  blumdrew

Strawman:

Pierre wrote

moderate levels of car-centrism in the Netherlands

Blumdrew’s strawman:

Dutch cities are just not car-centric though…

*some dutch cities are car centric (e.g. Rotterdam and den Haag)

New goal-post:
What does it mean to be car-centric? …. it means that having a car is your only option.

If it were car-centric, the train would be unreliable to a fault, or non-existent.

Based on this criterion Germany would not be car-centric (LOL).

Watts
Watts
11 months ago
Reply to  pierre delecto

Many village areas of Germany (where plenty of folks live) are definitely car-centric by any reasonable interpretation of this definition (two or three buses a day doesn’t really cut it for me). I’m not aware of any truly urban areas that would qualify. Though, to be fair, I’m not aware of any truly urban areas of the US that would qualify, either.

blumdrew
blumdrew
11 months ago
Reply to  pierre delecto

The fact that the Netherlands is a car-centric society

Me saying dutch cities are not car-centric was in direct response to this

What does it mean to be car-centric? …. it means that having a car is your only option.

That is a reasonable thing to say, and it matters when we are having a discussion about car-centricism

Watts
Watts
11 months ago
Reply to  blumdrew

The drive thru is very rare in the urban parts of the Netherlands.

I don’t know of any drive thrus in downtown Portland, either. Except where they are grandfathered in, they mostly exist on roads like Powell and 82nd, not exactly your “urban” exemplar.

I’m sure the US has more drive thrus than NL does. But let’s not overly romanticize Holland and Denmark.

pierre delecto
pierre delecto
11 months ago
Reply to  Watts

But let’s not overly romanticize Holland and Denmark.

The entire purpose of my OP in this comment thread. Many younger terminally-online people have made romanticizing the Netherlands a part of their identity. On the other hand, struggling to understand what it might take to make the USA less car-centric just isn’t as fun as posting about the lack of Netherlands-style world-class infrastructure.

blumdrew
blumdrew
11 months ago
Reply to  Watts

See this comment. There are a lot of drive thrus in Lloyd/Northwest along Broadway/Burnside.

Myth Dispulsion
Myth Dispulsion
1 year ago
Reply to  pierre delecto

It’s good others are reading Hembrow’s well-known site, probably the best and arguably the most interesting bike facility site one can visit. It includes, as you noticed, the bad realities as well as the good ones.

By the way, Europe recovered from the war and got wealthier, so it’s obvious that people and households would get cars and drive, including in the Netherlands. The same is true with flying, is obvious. And every lesser-developed nation and region has the right to do that.

EP
EP
1 year ago
Reply to  pierre delecto

But what percentage of the Dutch drive giant brodozers and monster SUVs? I’d take a world where every household had a tiny smart car/90s import car over our current reality any day.

pierre delecto
pierre delecto
1 year ago
Reply to  EP

I’d take a world where every household had a tiny smart car/90s import car over our current reality any day.

I’d take a world where driving a poisonous and homicidal motorized couch is illegal but thanks to the brutality and profound stupidity of ‘murrican society I no longer believe this world is possible.

Amit Zinman
1 year ago
Reply to  EP

They definitely would not drive a few blocks from their house to get coffee.

Watts
Watts
1 year ago
Reply to  EP

“I’d take a world where every household had a tiny smart car/90s import car”

Then you would hate Germany and neighboring countries. Most drivers there would have no part of a Smart Car.

pierre delecto
pierre delecto
1 year ago
Reply to  Watts

poisonous: fossil fuel burning
homicidal: SUV/personal-truck without EU-mandated speed limiters and ped/bike detection

Germany’s obsessions with fast automobiles is absolutely inconsistent with its climate and traffic safety goals. Fortunately, this fact is increasingly recognized in Germany:

https://www.dw.com/en/autobahns-speed-up-climate-crisis/a-62285918

Most ‘murricans have no idea how backward this nation’s ideas and politics have become.

Watts
Watts
11 months ago
Reply to  pierre delecto

I didn’t realize the Germans were still building so much new autobahn. Thanks for the link.

PTB
PTB
11 months ago
Reply to  pierre delecto

But have you spent any meaningful amount of time in Germany or have family there? Is Germany perfect? Nah, nowhere is. But are Germany’s current ideas and politics backwards? Nah, not by a long shot. Particularly compared to the US.

Watts
Watts
11 months ago
Reply to  PTB

Closing fully functional nuclear plants and replacing them with coal strikes me as a bit backwards in this era.

Granted, that’s just one thing, but it’s a big one.

pierre delecto
pierre delecto
11 months ago
Reply to  PTB

by “this nation” I meant ‘murrica, not Deutschland

Amit Zinman
1 year ago
Reply to  pierre delecto

the drive throughs in the Netherlands as in Germany and other countries aren’t in urban city centers, they are way in the outskirts of the city.

John
John
1 year ago
Reply to  dw

Yeah, well, these are ex pats. The ones who left because they didn’t like it there.

Myth Dispulsion
Myth Dispulsion
1 year ago
Reply to  John

You have earnest defenders here among the editors, but the grandparents came earlier, and these two founders (one deceased) grew up in the USA.

PacificSource
PacificSource
1 year ago

I’ve reported the one on 82nd in clackamas MULTIPLE times for them allowing cars to sit and block traffic and the police dispatch was like “yep, we get complaints all the time for this one”

Michelle
Michelle
1 year ago

Two funny notes of interest, you can see in the picture there’s a pedestrian bridge. They put the bridges up all over division when a young man was killed biking over by Portland Nursery I think in about 2012. The murals were put up when Loan was murdered supposedly to make people more aware. It was done by a muralist in conjunction, I believe, with Lincoln Park Elementary. There was a grant for it.

Literally all the safety infrastructure there in the picture is in memorial to those killed on the street.

David Hampsten
David Hampsten
1 year ago
Reply to  Michelle

The pedestrian bridges were put in by the county in the 1970s before the city annexed the area. Almost no one uses them. There are two on SE Division at 85th and 136th, one on NE 122nd at Sacramento, and another over NE Glisan near 128th.

Michelle
Michelle
1 year ago
Reply to  David Hampsten

Thank you for correcting me. It must have been a crosswalk they put in in 2012, I remember reading about it at the Oregonian. I had thought it was the bridges.

I grew up in Salem and when I moved to Portland in 2005 it was mostly to North Portland though I have tons of aunties and uncles in the outer east side and have visited it for family gatherings here my whole life, since birth. Now I live in the outer east side myself. I can’t afford to buy anywhere else in the city.

Carolyn
Carolyn
1 year ago

They best hope I don’t come around there and just snitch on the able fuck car. Sorry not sorry. There are born disabled people out there that can’t even drive. Just imagine spending tons of money on an accessible car to your needs.

Bill
Bill
1 year ago

I do wish that PBOT defaulted to sidewalk-hard bike infrastructure more often. It seems to me like any bike lanes at road grade will be somewhat doomed because it is so easy to park in them and the infrastructure out there is so car-centric already. I assume the reason they do not is because it is more expensive, but it just would head off so many conflicts that it seems like particularly on arterial streets like that it is clearly the right way to go.

Fred
Fred
1 year ago
Reply to  Bill

I dunno, Bill. Sidewalk-hard bike infrastructure is also a mixed bag. C’mon out to SW Capitol Hwy and try out the new downhill sidewalk / bike lane. You’ll find yourself weaving all over at 25 mph to avoid offset curbs, sharp jags in the surface, and even utility poles IN THE MIDDLE of the so-called bike lane. It would have been sooooo much better to build a protected street-level bike lane on the downhill section, but for some reason the city went with the sidewalk version. I will continue to take the lane and piss off the cars behind me that want to drive over 25 mph.

pierre delecto
pierre delecto
1 year ago
Reply to  Bill

PBOT director Leah Treat tried to make protected bike lanes the default policy and this progressive policy along with others was utterly squashed by push-back from city council commissioners. PBOT needs to be gutted and re-formed but city council is even worse when it comes to active transportation.

https://www.peopleforbikes.org/news/portland-is-first-u.s.-city-to-make-protection-the

pierre delecto
pierre delecto
1 year ago

I wrote “tried”.

David Hampsten
David Hampsten
1 year ago

I think it was an official “policy”, but like most policies in most jurisdictions, it was rarely implemented – the policy was adopted in order to garner more grant funding from the state and feds. It was however never a “standard operating procedure” such as building streets with curbs, gutters, and plenty of free car parking.

Todd/Boulanger
Todd/Boulanger
1 year ago
Reply to  David Hampsten

David: yes, what you are talking about is “administrative” policy those in use without being tied to code or standard details…when it comes to pro-automotive administrative policies these are so so strong because they are unwritten AND assumed to be enforce…the latter is usually missing for traffic safety, bikes and peds.

Myth Dispulsion
Myth Dispulsion
1 year ago
Reply to  pierre delecto

In this case, it’s just sillier activism. Protected bike lanes are only applicable to certain arterials. It’s nonsense to expect them on collectors or smaller streets, and on many arterials, driveways mean gaps galore in the “protection” with cross-traffic hazards from driveways worse than pedestrians face already on sidewalks. Then one faces cross streets.

Meanwhile, on the major arterials without many interruptions and obviously on the biggest, fastest roadways, those highways and the equivalent, better is a totally removed parallel path, anyway. Again, that’s without cross-traffic except at a very few intersections.

On arterials given the boulevard or avenue treatment rather than fighting evolution toward a highway (if not freeway), something neglected along with getting rid of many driveways and cross streets still to limit access and cross-traffic hazards is to incorporate cycle tracks with sidewalks, at a higher level than the roadway surfaces, or cycle tracks at intermediate level.

SCOTT DIAMOND
SCOTT DIAMOND
1 year ago

This is my pet peeve. When I find vehicles illegally parked in the bike lane I’ve just started recording the conversation as I ask the driver why they think it is OK. When I get a few of these I’ll make a worst of video upload to YouTube. In this case, I left a poor google review for this location and sent a message on Facebook to Dutch Bros. Thanks to Michelle for being proactive!

DC
DC
1 year ago

So disappointing that the city only responded to this article, not to the citizen’s actual letter

Michelle
Michelle
1 year ago
Reply to  DC

They responded to my letter. It’s the quickest response I’ve ever received from the city. Lisa Strader who answers ADA requests for PBOT sent me a letter saying PBOT was now enforcing this law in this place and to contact her if I have further problems.

I wrote this back:

Our community should include bikes in the framework of disabled folks, there are many of us. You don’t hear from us as much but I hope that’ll begin to change. I know people that have epilepsy that ride a bike, people like me with diminished spatial abilities. For some, riding a bike is clearly making the world safer for those around us. There are many of us who do not drive a car and bike instead to keep everyone else safe from things like us making the wrong distance judgment and accidentally killing someone or having a grand mal seizure and accidentally killing someone, that needs to be recognized. 

Z
Z
1 year ago

I’m SURPRISED it took this long for someone to complain. This has been happening for YEARS.

qqq
qqq
1 year ago
Reply to  Z

Maybe people HAVE been complaining for years.

Michelle
Michelle
1 year ago
Reply to  qqq

I haven’t complained before now but I have had to swerve into traffic every time at this spot. I tried to go on the sidewalk but if a pedestrian was there I struggled to get past with my chariot. I started to go around Dutch Bros on 136th and Clinton but I think the blind corner is even more dangerous. Most people hate bikers, they just don’t care if we are put in danger because to their mind we deserve danger for driving a bike on the road.

Michael
Michael
1 year ago

Totally not making a valuable contribution to this thread but I had a friend who would pick up and move cones and any other portable object (realtor open house signs seem to be a frequent problem too) well down the road when he would come across them needlessly blocking bike infrastructure.

Chris I
Chris I
1 year ago
Reply to  Michael

I do this. If it’s in the public ROW, I can move it.

Michelle
Michelle
11 months ago
Reply to  Michael

I moved the cones to the top of the pedestrian bridge an hour before I filed. I was upset and so were they. The one worker came out and screamed at me that I didn’t own the street. Oh, the irony.

Matthew in PDX
Matthew in PDX
11 months ago

Whilst Michelle has framed her letter in terms of a reasonable accommodation, she is not asking for a reasonable accommodation. She is asking for Dutch Bros to obey the law and for the city to enforce the law. This is a normal expectation, not a reasonable accommodation to vary from normal, lawful practice.

I get very angry when private businesses and others coopt public space for their own activities. I get even more angry when public officials, such as police, do the same thing – they know the law and should be held to a much higher standard. When I lived in NYC, one could almost guarantee that the NYPD would coopt bike lanes or the public sidewalks so that officers can park wherever they damn well feel like.

The only circumstances where it may be necessary for an emergency vehicle to block a sidewalk or bicycle lane is when they are responding to a 911 emergency (their flashing lights will indicate a 911 emergency), any other time they can park legally and walk, like the rest of us. It is never necessary for a Dutch Bros vehicle to block a sidewalk, bicycle lane or traffic lane – there is no such thing as a 911 coffee emergency (no matter how much some of us need that caffeine hit in the morning.

Michelle
Michelle
11 months ago
Reply to  Matthew in PDX

I agree with you about the heart of the matter and your framework should be the way the legal system works. But I don’t think the legal system works that way.

IANAL but my understanding is that the city has an obligation to provide for disability accessibility before an accident happens. They can’t be sued by somebody who is made unsafe who prefers to bike who is non disabled (or who has no nexus between biking and their disability) until after they are dead or injured or have some tangible loss. I don’t want my estate’s executor to be writing this letter to the city, I can write it now with my disability that prevents me from driving.

An RA would be considered an RA here because the city has a clear practice of not enforcing this law. An RA, by my non lawyer understanding can require an entity to enforce the heretofore unenforced laws.