Subscriber Posts

These posts are written and submitted by BikePortland subscribers. Everyone can view them and comment; but only paid subscribers can post. We’ll publish almost anything — from short announcements, questions, or requests for help to longer stories about your biking experiences and observations. Depending on what you write, we might even publish your post on the Front Page too. Submit your post today via our handy form or learn more about our subscription program here.


Legislative – ODOT Autonomous Vehicle Task Force

A J Zelada by on July 12th, 2018 at 3:39 pm

Jul 12, 2018

Dear Governor Kate Brown,

RE: Multiple Issues of the Task Force on Autonomous Vehicles (AV)

I have concern there is no representation from our Oregon Pedestrian and Bicycle community advocacy groups on the legislatively created Autonomous Vehicle Taskforce. I realize this Task Force Committee was legislatively driven & ODOT appointed, but our state needs your leadership for vulnerable road users’ voice within the Task Force’s products.

I urge you to consider adding the Pedestrian Bicycle Postscript perspective that includes Bicycle and Pedestrian viewpoints. We have a wealth of people to serve to create an addendum regarding Autonomous Vehicles with this perspective in mind: Oregon Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory to Oregon Department of Transportation, the Street Trust, Oregon Walks, OPAL, Community Cycling Center and others.

Given that the first round of Task Force Agenda and Memorandi are now appearing…there are deficiencies which show the void of not having all the important players at the table. The Pedestrian/Bicycle/Vulnerable Road user viewpoint is missing in every material packet presented on the ODOT website.

1) Subcommittee on Cybersecurity and Long-Term Policy, Oregon Task Force on Autonomous Vehicles has no reference to the US Senate Bill 1885 – AV START Act which is in committee in DC.

2) There is NO mention of Visioning Systems or Pedestrian/Bicycle/Vulnerable Road User Protection:
A. Insurance and Liability Subcommittee 1 Materials June 6
B. Law Enforcement and Crash Reporting Subcommittee Materials June 7
C. https://www.oregon.gov/ODOT/Programs/Pages/CAV.aspx

3. One mention of ‘Pedestrian’
A. Licensing and Registration Subcommittee 2 Material June 12
B. Automated Vehicle 101 materials ODOT
C. The Drive toward Change: Use Cases for AV ODOT

There is no discussion of ORS 811.065 safe passing distance for bicyclists (or pedestrians). This is a sad comment and potentially a liability for the state for the exclusion of this pedestrian / bicycle / vulnerable road user point of view at this high policy level. I am appreciative of the experience of the Chair Tim Tannenbaum from Washington County & his background with his police officers on bicycles. But again, the materials on the ODOT web illustrate the failure to be in the discourse. Given that Pedestrians and Bicyclists have the greatest vulnerability for injury and death on our roadways, it seems the Oregon task force committee should correct the exclusion of these road users.

Federal Issues

In an advisory from Chair Elaine Chao of the US Department of Transportation, she states: “Entities are encouraged to have a documented process … are expected to be able to detect and respond to other vehicles (in and out of its travel path), pedestrians, bicyclists, animals, and objects that could affect safe operation of the vehicle… should also include the ability to address a wide variety of foreseeable encounters, including emergency vehicles, temporary work zones, and other unusual conditions…that may impact the safe operation…”

Where Death Occurs

As you should be aware, Governors Highway Safety Association report in late 2017 found 82% of pedestrian fatalities occurred outside of intersections. These midblock crossing deaths are now the new normal. This is a new revelation heightens the importance of vision systems that must include maximum awareness systems for any detection. (https://www.ghsa.org/resources/spotlight-peds17)

The Public Awareness of Autonomous Vehicle Deaths

The League of American Bicyclists, has been monitoring the AV Start which the US House just passed months ago in a version within the Federal Aviation Authorization bill. The Senate is to take up this concern now. We want the inclusion the Vision tests (in the vernacular of safety standards: to see construction workers on the road, blind people crossing intersections, police directing traffic, first responders as well as our large population of pedestrians and bicyclists). Attached is the League of American Bicyclists statement that will apprise you of our pedestrian/bicyclist perspective and the needed AV START inclusion of the Vision Test.

For example, ‘The crash in Tempe, as well as preliminary studies in San Francisco and Pittsburgh, show that automated vehicles on the road are not always able to detect and respond to vulnerable road users such as bicyclists, pedestrians and people in wheelchairs. In San Francisco, automated vehicles were found to engage in four of the five driver behaviors most likely to cause vulnerable road user fatalities and injuries including: running red lights, rolling through stop signs, making dangerous right turns, and not yielding to pedestrians in crosswalks. A survey by Bike Pittsburgh of its members received a number of comments on near-misses by autonomous vehicles, and of incidences of AVs not following the state’s four foot safe passing law. In addition, recent articles in IEEE Spectrum and in Slate magazine report that detecting bicyclists is one most difficult problem ADS technology faces and testing for bicyclists lags behind other automated driving system technology tests.’ ~ from the League of American Bicyclists.
I hope you see that this AV Task Force committee needs leadership beyond the present AV Task Force’s cockpits view that disregards Transportation including the bicyclist, the pedestrian and vulnerable road users.
Thank you for taking these matters seriously. And thank you for your service with this important state wide issue.

Sincerely,

A. J. Zelada, OD
Member, Board of Directors
League of American Bicyclists

Former Member and Chair, 2008-2013
Oregon Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory to
Oregon Department of Transportation

Attachments:
League of American Bicyclists’ Concern of AV Visioning Omission
Letter from Advocates for Highway Safety & Auto Safety
AV_Fact_Sheet_final (1)-1.pdf

cc: Oregon Task Force Members on Autonomous Vehicles
Jonathan Maus, BikePortland.org
Oregon Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee to ODOT


League of American Bicyclists Concern of AV Visioning Omission.
(copy sent to Oregon Senators Wyden and Merkley)

We are writing to strongly urge you to oppose efforts to attach the pending AV START Act (S. 1885) to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Reauthorization Act (S. 1405), which is expected to be considered on the Senate Floor soon after the upcoming recess. Giving the AV START Act a “ride” on the FAA bill would be ironic at best and lethal at worst.

The safety deregulation built into the AV START Act and the precise and thorough way aviation handles autonomous systems is a study in stark contrast. The FAA has rigorous protocols for ensuring the safety of automation in the air, and examples of the success of effective standards and oversight of automated systems fly over our heads every single day.

Conversely, the AV START Act, in its current form, shockingly exempts potentially millions of these self-driving vehicles from meeting existing safety regulations. The failures of this experimental technology have been tragically demonstrated in a number of crashes which have resulted in at least three deaths. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has several open investigations which will produce findings likely to have a direct bearing on the AV START Act. The bill should not be advanced, especially as a rider on the FAA bill, until those investigations are complete and critically-needed changes are made to ensure safety.

The AV START Act will likely set policy on driverless cars for decades to come. As such, comprehensive safeguards, sufficient government oversight and industry accountability are essential. The bill, in its current form, fails to provide these minimal safety protections. The reasonable improvements outlined below will address known and foreseeable problems with driverless car technology. Moreover, they will help to bolster public trust in this nascent technology which has already shown to be deficient. We ask for your support for the following commonsense improvements:

● Limit the size and scope of exemptions from federal safety standards;
● Require minimum performance standards such as a “vision test” for driverless technologies, cybersecurity and electronics system protections, and distracted driving requirements when a human needs to take back control of a vehicle from a computer;
● Provide for adequate data collection and consumer information;
● Compel all AVs to capture comprehensive crash data in a format that will aid investigators such as the NTSB and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA);
● Ensure access and safety for members of all disability communities which have differing needs;
● Subject Level 2 (partially-automated) vehicles to all safety critical provisions;
● Prohibit manufacturers from unilaterally “turning off” vehicle systems such as the steering wheel and gas pedal which is not allowed under current law;
● Maintain the right of states and localities to protect their citizens by regulating the AV system in absence of federal regulations; and,
● Provide NHTSA with sufficient resources and authorities.

Some critics of these changes claim they would stifle innovation or hamper technological progress. But what they will actually do is provide essential protections for AV occupants as well as everyone sharing the roads with them for many years to come. Our diverse group of safety, public health, bicyclists, pedestrians, smart growth, consumer and environmental groups, law enforcement and first responders, disability communities and families affected by motor vehicle crashes support these sensible improvements that must be made before the bill moves forward.

It would be egregious to push the AV START Act through by tacking it onto a must-pass bill. Doing so would circumvent the regular legislative process and cut it off from full debate, discussion, transparent consideration, and the offering of amendments. The artificial urgency to advance this bill is disconnected from the reality that AVs are still potentially decades away. In fact, just last week Bill Ford Jr., Executive Chairman of Ford Motor Company, said “There’s been a lot of over-promising and I think a lot of misinformation that’s been out there. It’s really important that we get it right, rather than get it quickly.”

Yet, industry interests seeking to sell – not just test – unproven systems continue to perpetuate this false premise. We urge you to allow the NTSB to finish their recommendations so that you can benefit from their expertise to help inform you in your decision-making process and insist on the adoption of the urgently-needed safety requirements in the bill.

Thank you for your consideration.

Sincerely,

A. J. Zelada, OD
Member, Board of Director
League of American Bicyclists

Former Member and Chair, 2008-2013
Oregon Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory to
Oregon Department of Transportation


Letter from Advocates for Highway & Auto Safety, July 10, 2018 (copy)
http://saferoads.org/2018/07/10/groups-urge-senate-committee-to-address-av-cybersecurity-vulnerabilities/

July 10, 2018

The Honorable John Thune, Chairman
The Honorable Bill Nelson, Ranking Member
Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation
United States Senate
Washington, DC 20510

Dear Chairman Thune and Ranking Member Nelson:
In preparation for tomorrow’s hearing “Complex Cybersecurity Vulnerabilities: Lessons Learned from Spectre and Meltdown,” we write to highlight the critical problems related to the cybersecurity of connected and autonomous vehicles (AVs). As these cars will be “computers on wheels,” it is absolutely essential that strong protections be in place to safeguard against potentially catastrophic instances of vehicle hacking. We respectfully request that this letter be included in the hearing record.
Given recent high-profile cyberattacks and the tremendous threat that hacking will pose to connected and automated cars, we are very concerned that these potential risks are not being adequately addressed. In 2015, hackers demonstrated their ability to take over the controls of a sport utility vehicle (SUV) that was traveling 70 miles-per-hour on an Interstate outside of St. Louis, MO. By accessing the vehicle’s entertainment system using a laptop computer, hackers located miles away from the vehicle were able to send disruptive commands to the SUV’s dashboard functions, steering, brakes, and transmission. This incident is likely just a preview of the types of hacking that will be possible as vehicles become even more reliant on complex electronic systems and outside communications.
Moreover, there is a very real and dangerous possibility that instances of hacking will not only affect one individual vehicle, but could very well impact entire fleets or model lines – posing a severe risk to occupants of the hacked vehicles as well as other road users. These attacks could also clog roads, stop the movement of goods and hinder the response of emergency vehicles. Of additional concern, there are a number of tragic examples of conventional vehicles being used as weapons by terrorists. The potential for remote hacking of connected and automated vehicles by these malicious actors could have unimaginable implications for our national security. Moreover, these risks will only be exacerbated as commercial motor vehicles, specifically large trucks and buses, become more reliant on autonomous systems and are used in platoons.
Currently, Section 14 of the American Vision for Safer Transportation through Advancement of Revolutionary Technologies (AV START) Act (S. 1885), only requires manufacturers to have a cybersecurity plan in place. This is woefully inadequate and has no requirements that any protections be implemented. Instead, the legislation should be improved to direct the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to issue a minimum performance standard for all AVs (including SAE Level 2 vehicles). The agency should be required to issue this final rule within a reasonable deadline of three years after enactment. In fact, the July 6, 2018 edition of Science Magazine included an article penned by Joan Claybrook and Shaun Kildare which called for a cyber standard and suggested that regulators “look across industries and adapt standards from other modes and fields (banking, military, aviation, etc.) to ensure that AVs have a means for detecting and responding to an attack appropriately and preventing a widespread threat to safety.”
Further, we support the establishment of a method for sharing cybersecurity problems and vulnerabilities among manufacturers so that all systems can be updated accordingly. To mitigate against widespread impacts, establishing a method of quickly identifying issues and disseminating that information across all participants is critical.
The public recognizes the acute threat of cybersecurity attacks on vehicles, and for good reason. A poll conducted by Morning Consult earlier this year showed that 67 percent of adults responded that they were somewhat or very concerned about cyber threats to driverless cars. An ORC International poll from January 2018 showed that 81 percent of respondents supported the United States Department of Transportation issuing rules to protect against hacking of cars that are being operated by a computer.
We urge you to include the need for robust protections against vehicle hacking in tomorrow’s timely discussion. Furthermore, the pending AV START Act should not be enacted into law without requirements that sufficiently account for the reality of cybersecurity threats, including hacking into driverless cars. Thank you for your consideration of our position. We look forward to continuing to work with you to ensure the safety of all road users.
Sincerely,

Catherine Chase, President
Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety

Joan Claybrook, President Emeritus
Public Citizen and Former NHTSA Administrator

Jason Levine, Executive Director
Center for Auto Safety

Jack Gillis, Executive Director
Consumer Federation of America

Rosemary Shahan, President
Consumers for Auto Reliability and Safety

John M. Simpson, Privacy and Technology
Project Director, Consumer Watchdog

cc: Members of the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation

Letter copy submitted to Gov. Kate Brown, Jul 12, 2018 by AJZ


League of American Bicyclists white paper: AV START Vision Test
Background: In 2017, The Senate Commerce Committee passed S. 1885, the “American Vision for Safer Transportation through Advancement of Revolutionary Technologies” (AV START) Act. The goal of the bill is to establish an interim framework for the deployment of self-driving technology before it is mature enough to enable specific new federal safety standards. While the League of American Bicyclists (the League) supports the development of this technology and agrees that it has the potential to greatly reduce the traffic injuries and fatalities attributed to distracted driving, speeding and other behaviors, we also believe that these vehicles must be able to pass some basic safety standards before being deployed in large numbers on our streets.

The League calls for a standardized performance test, or “vision test,” that measures an automated vehicle’s ability to recognize and respond to vulnerable road users, including bicyclists, pedestrians and people with disabilities.

Vision Test Safety Standard: Set a federal standard ensuring that Automated Vehicles would are able to detect and re-spond to people biking, walking and using wheelchairs, as well as construction workers in work zones, first responders providing assistance and law enforcement officers directing traffic;
• Test the ability to detect and respond to roadway infrastructure designed for bicycling and walking including: shared lane markings (sharrows), crosswalks, including those that use art, pavers, or other non-standard paving; bike lanes, whether striped or buffered (with paint or physical barriers); and advisory bike lanes;
• Test the ability to detect bicyclists coming up along the passenger side of the vehicle, stopped alongside a row of parked cars, or signaling a left turn from the opposite side of the road.

Why It Matters: Pedestrian and bicyclists make up 17 percent of all roadway fatalities despite being responsible for 12 percent of the trips. Strong testing of automated vehicle technology has the potential to help reduce these risks, but only if vehicle manufacturers are held accountable to build and test their vehicles to recognize and respond to vulnerable users.

• Detecting bicyclists is one of the most difficult problems automated driving systems have, and yet what little public information on automated vehicle testing exists suggest that testing for bicyclists lags behind other automated driving system technology tests.
• Automated Vehicles in San Francisco were found to engage in four of the five driver behaviors with the highest results in vulnerable user fatalities, including: running red lights, rolling through stop signs, failure to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks, and dangerous right turns (AVs did not speed.) Each of these four behaviors observed in AVs could

be improved by AVs meeting minimum standards to detect and respond to all roadway users, signage, and markings.

Taking the next step on #workzonewtf

by on July 9th, 2018 at 12:15 pm

The City of Portland has successfully gotten developers to usually preserve walkways during construction, but it needs to clean up its own act for in-roadway projects.

Five years ago, providing an alternate, covered walkway during building construction using the sidewalk was a foreign practice in Portland. Now, though the situation still isn’t perfect (especially for people experiencing difficulties walking), Portlanders can mostly count on there being a place to walk while a building’s being built in the adjacent plot of land. Kudos, Bureau of Development Services and Bureau of Transportation project staff, and to the Street Trust for bird-dogging this issue for years.

However, at least in my experience, there seems to have been little if any improvement for in-roadway projects. These projects are generally completely in government control. My perception is that they impact people biking more than people walking. They often turn a comfortable place to ride into a white-knuckled experience. They don’t have to, with some pre-planning.

The planning should recognize the stress that construction inherently introduces for travelers. It should also recognize the fact that people biking bear disproportionate stress. For one thing, the average bike tire is less accommodating of bad road surface conditions than the average car tire. For another thing, if people driving are unusually stressed and distracted due to construction, the burden on people biking to pay attention and not get hit is even higher than usual. That’s why making a real effort to preserve and/or provide bike infrastructure during construction is especially important. Although the current status quo may appear at first glance to some to make both driving and biking about equally less pleasant, the actual degradation of comfort is much worse while biking.

Let me give a few examples currently occurring and my suggestions for improvement.

Example 1: SE 50th / 52nd

Between SE Division and Powell, between Chavez and 72nd, SE 50th and SE 52nd are the main through-routes for driving. This summer, there have been lengthy and disruptive projects on both streets simultaneously. SE 50th is being repaved, and it looks from my ride-bys like SE 52nd has a water pipe and/or maybe a sewer project going on.

The result has been SE 50th’s roadway has been closed completely during rush hours a number of days. From the increased auto traffic on SE 52nd, my guess is that some people who would have driven on SE 50th appear to have started driving on SE 52nd instead. SE 52nd is the main official bike route in the area, with 6-foot bike lanes and significant bike traffic. However, the construction on the SE 52nd project has eliminated the bike lanes temporarily for a block or two, forcing driving and biking to share space. The construction has also created an extraordinarily rough ride, with the bike lane punctuated with extremely non-level linear asphalt patches for a block. The ride is so rough that I fear being diverted into a car’s path by one of the bumps.

I would suggest some or all of the following improvements to these projects:

  • Change schedule for one or both of the projects by a few months or a year. There are other roads that can be repaved this year.
  • Do temporary asphalt patching to a higher standard, especially on roads with high bike traffic. At least, I hope that those godawful patch jobs are temporary!
  • Improve temporary signage – be sure to include “bikes merge with cars” signs if they’re called for
  • Don’t put temporary signage in the bike lane!! (If you really must, provide a “bikes merge with cars” sign first).

Example 2: SE Foster between Powell & 90th

SE Foster was restriped a few weeks ago with a road diet. Two motor vehicle lanes each way became one motor vehicle lane each way, a center turn lane, and (space for) bike lanes. There are cones up and down the street to signal to people driving that there is one motor vehicle lane, not two, which gives the street a bit of a chaotic construction zone feel. The cones are generally placed where the bike lanes will be. It has been weeks and the bike lanes have not yet been striped, even though the center turn lane was striped the weekend of the road diet. This means that people biking on Foster are biking in a construction zone, with cones in much of the logical area for biking.

I would suggest the following improvement to this project:

  • The bike lanes should have been striped the same weekend as the center turn lane! You might not even need cones to keep people driving in the motor vehicle lane if the bike lanes had been striped.

Overall, to avoid discouraging biking in Portland, the city needs to pay more attention to accommodating biking well in its roadway construction projects. Until the Foster Road construction, I would have thought the problem was mostly with the Water Bureau and BES, but the Foster Road construction situation is not good either, so I think even PBOT could use some self-reflection.

Creative Video of Bellingham Naked Bicycle Ride

by on July 3rd, 2018 at 11:32 am

From up here in Bellingham! I just completed an artistic non voyeur video of the 2018 Bellingham World Naked Bicycle ride that has the history and purpose of the World Naked Bicycle Ride as well as a very important message from the producers of the Bellingham World Naked Bicycle Ride. It is a family and work place safe video as privates and faces are blurred out to protect privacy.

Enjoy!

Mark Allyn
Bellingham, Washington

The Tram is closed! How do I go by bike? (Day 3)

by on June 29th, 2018 at 10:20 am

Day 6 of the tram closure, and my third day of commuting to the hill without riding the tram. It’s a cool, overcast 60 degrees — perfect for a walk up the hill! OHSU and Go By Tram have provided walking maps for folks wanting to get up and down the hill by foot.

My first decision point (well, after deciding to walk up)! Do I take the stairs or the elevator?

The stairs. There are 132 steps to the Gibbs Street Pedestrian Overpass. This overpass connects South Waterfront to the Lair Hill Neighborhood, crossing over I-5.

There are plenty of wayfinding markings on the ground. Some look official, but others look more like more instruction was needed.

Walking through the Lair Hill neighborhood is wonderful! It would be even better if auto traffic wasn’t pushed through. There is lot of interesting artworks on display at the homes there, and wonderful gardens and plants. It’s interesting to see the view of the neighborhood on ground level rather than from above.

A tunnel!

More stairs.

Stairs.

Crossing Barbur Blvd. I wish this crossing had a call signal and flashing lights.

Once past Barbur I was on the last leg. This path goes through the houses at the base of(and on) Marquam Hill.

I’m glad it was a cool overcast morning, because that was a workout! Way more effort than riding the ebike yesterday! But other than crossing Barbur it was a peaceful and enjoyable walk. I actually have been using this route leaving the hill each day. It’s a good way to wind down, do a brain clear and prepare for the ride home.

So that’s it for this series. There are other ways (bus, shuttle, riding my own bike) to get up to work during the tram shutdown but I don’t feel the need to document them all. I hope you enjoyed reading about my commute. Please let me know if you have any questions and say hi if you see me riding (or walking) around!

The Tram is closed! How do I go by bike? (Day 2)

by on June 27th, 2018 at 12:31 pm

My first time using bike share and my first time on an e-bike. Wheeee!
(Photos: Armando Luna)

Today is day 5 of the Portland Aerial Tram shutdown, but for me it’s only the second day I’ve had to deal with getting up the hill without riding the tram. Monday I telecommuted, yesterday I rode one of the shuttles and today I am taking an e-bike. Today was actually my very first time using bike share and riding an ebike.

I chose the Jump bike because I had already downloaded the app and the Lime bikes just arrived yesterday and I don’t have the app yet. OHSU has partnered with these companies to let students and staff use the bikes to get to OHSU, so the usage area is confined to the South Waterfront and the OHSU campus.

After checking my bike in at the Go By Bike valet (Whitaker lot), I opened up the Sobi app and reserved a Jump bike. There were only two, so I got lucky. I as I was trying to remember my pin, my coworker Jennifer showed up and reserved the other bike. She used the Jump bike yesterday to ride up the hill, so I asked her if we could ride together. I loaded my bag and speaker into the Jump bike basket and we were on our way.


[Read more…]

The tram is closed! How do I go by bike? (Day 1)

by on June 26th, 2018 at 11:52 am

As a weekday commuter to OHSU, I am admittedly excited for the tram to be out of service until July 30th. Why? Because I will have a chance to shake up my normal bike commuter from the Hollywood neighborhood to the tram. Most of the commute will be the same but once I cross the Tilikum bridge I will have a few options on getting to the hill.

What’s happening with the tram? The track ropes need to be shifted. This is scheduled about every 10 years. Here’s a video about the process and you can also learn more from Jonathan’s post last week.

Today I rode into the Whitaker lot. The is the lot nearest to the tram’s regular Go By Bike lot, which is where I usually park. Shuttles queue up here to take employees, patients and guests up to the hill. The wait this morning was short, but if you don’t want to stand in line and wait there’s a cornhole game set up to pass the time.

As I was parking my bike with Go By Bike, Lime Bike was unloading their ebikes for folks to use to ride up the hill from the South Waterfront. They are joining the Jump ebikes that have also been made available for people wanting some e-assistance in riding up the hill.

Since today was my first day, I decided to take one of the shuttles up. The shuttle I rode did not have a bike rack, but as I reach the Kohler Pavilion on the hill I saw that the shuttle behind me did, so I could have loaded my bike if I wanted to bring it with me.

Tomorrow I am planning on leaving my bike at the Schnitzer Lot and riding an ebike up to the OHSU Student Center, where one of the auxiliary bike valet locations is located.
As I reached the tram level of Kohler Pavilion, I got to see some of the rope workers out for a walk.

Let me know if you have any questions, and I’ll try to answer them.

Do cyclists need shade to keep cool?

by on June 19th, 2018 at 11:10 am

At the Sullivan’s Crossing open house, a staffer explained that the planters at the south end “plaza” can’t have any trees in them, since the leaves would be slippery when wet. I know in the summer I ride specifically on streets with shade trees to keep cooler. Am I doing it wrong? Shouldn’t bikes be routed away from shade trees? Or, should we plant conifers, so no falling leaves (mostly)?

Has Anything Else Changed Less Than a Bicycle?

Rivelo by on June 15th, 2018 at 6:22 am

This photo was taken 123 years ago, but the bicycle pictured here doesn’t look significantly different than the single speeds we see tooling around Portland in 2018.

Pretty amazing, and testimony to the perfection of the traditional “diamond” frame.

The link from Vintage Portland, our (other) daily read:

https://vintageportland.files.wordpress.com/2018/06/1895-c_herbert-lewis-posing-with-a-bicycle_a2004-002-11004.jpg

Call To Picnic!

Kiel Johnson (Go By Bike) by on June 4th, 2018 at 1:18 pm

without a picnic in 1969 this would have still been our waterfront

Join Us June 5th from 11-1pm @ SW Broadway and Montgomery for Portland Inclusivity Picnic

In his 2008 inauguration speech, then Mayor Sam Adams laid out a vision for Portland to become the “most sustainable city in the world”. It was an optimistic vision and one that called on everyone in Portland to work together to achieve. Today that narrative seems overrun by, as Tim Davis put it, “people in towers opposing towers”, homeowners fighting against people without homes, people with immense privilege excluding people without much, and even motorists trying to reserve as much space as possible for their private automobiles. It would be hard to claim that ten years later Portland has lived up to Mayor Adam’s vision.

The desire to claim your exclusive rights to common space is tempting in a world that seems run more off of social media than face-to-face contact, but exclusivity will not help us solve the most pressing problems we face as a society. Bicycles can be a tool to help us see each other and efficiently include people in a growing city. But as Denmark’s recent ban on religious face wear shows, we will need more than nice bikeways. We need to embrace a culture of including as many people as possible and understand that by doing so we will all be more wealthy, happy, and healthier.

In the summer of 1969, Portlanders hosted several “conscious raising picnics” in the small grassy area between the lanes of what was then the Harbor Drive highway. They ambitiously called for transforming the highway into a park. Today, it is impossible to imagine our city without Tom McCall Waterfront Park..

It is time for Portlanders to bring out their picnic blankets again.

Tomorrow, we are taking over a small section of Portland’s expansive public space dedicated to cars before people. We are reclaiming it to make a place where people can feel included and differences are celebrated. This inclusivity picnic will last for two hours and we will will host an open mic with several invited guest speakers to collectively imagine what an inclusive Portland might look and feel like.

Please join us tomorrow, June 5th, from 11-1pm on SW Montgomery between Broadway and 6th for a picnic to raise our consciousness about inclusivity and resist the pulls at our society to hide behind the shields of our car windows and single family zoned lots. Bring your own blanket and meal or join someone else on their blanket. Everyone is welcome.

New Episode for TV Series on Bicycling In Bellingham!

by on June 4th, 2018 at 8:42 am

Folks:

I have created another episode on bicycling through Bellingham history! This one has a theme of why Bellingham is a nice place to commute by bicycle as well as footage of our own bike to work day parties!

Also, all of the music as well as the illustrations of early Bellingham buildings are my own!

Enjoy!

Mark Allyn
Bellingham, Washington