TriMet story archives

Browse headlines below for all my TriMet stories.


TriMet says denial of tricycle as mobility device is supported by federal regulations

Posted on January 7th, 2019 at 2:48 pm.

This three-wheeled handcycle isn’t allowed on MAX trains.

Last month we shared the story of activists who spoke out at a TriMet board meeting about their desire to take adult tricycles on light rail cars.

Current TriMet policy allows only two-wheeled bicycles on MAX. Portlander Serenity Ebert, one of the people who testified at the TriMet meeting, uses a trike as a mobility device and she’s pushing the agency to change its policy so that she and others can have the same access as other bicycle users.

Ebert has requested a formal exception based on her condition, but TriMet denied it on the grounds that she can use a walker instead of the trike in order to access MAX. As follow-up to our previous story, I asked TriMet if they would have allowed Ebert’s tricycle if she was unable to use her walker. Here’s the response from agency PIO Tim Becker:[Read more…]

Business owner uses attorney and electeds to fight TriMet’s Gideon Overcrossing project

Posted on December 20th, 2018 at 12:31 pm.

Early TriMet rendering of Gideon Overcrossing.

Neighborhood transportation advocates in southeast Portland are sounding the alarm about TriMet’s Gideon Overcrossing project. They say opposition from an adjacent business owner could shelve the project.
[Read more…]

Two week Rhine-Lafayette Overpass closure begins today – UPDATED

Posted on December 17th, 2018 at 9:11 am.

(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

UPDATE, 1/14/19: This closure has been extended through February 1st. Please see the latest details on TriMet’s website.

If you’re one of the many people who rely on the carfree overpass that connects the neighborhoods of Brooklyn to Creston-Kenilworth, a repair project might impact your trips.
[Read more…]

Disability rights activists to TriMet: Let us take trikes on MAX

Posted on December 13th, 2018 at 10:04 am.

Serenity Ebert (left), Christine Watts (center), and Dawn Cohoe (right) in front of the TriMet board meeting yesterday. They are part of Civil Unrest Bicycle Club, a disability rights advocacy group.
(Photo courtesy Christine Watts)

TriMet General Manager Doug Kelsey and the agency’s Board of Directors heard from two cycling activists during the open public comment period of their meeting yesterday.
[Read more…]

TriMet hosts demo of new bus stations planned for SE Division

Posted on October 19th, 2018 at 9:42 am.

*Video by Andrew Theen/The Oregonian

In an effort to refine the design of a new type of bus station for their $175 million Division Transit Project, TriMet built a full-scale mock-up and invited the media to see how it would work in real-life. The demo took place yesterday at a TriMet park-and-ride lot in Gresham.[Read more…]

TriMet launches online open house on Division Transit Project station designs

Posted on July 3rd, 2018 at 9:06 am.

Latest iteration of how TriMet will design eight new stations on outer SE Division.

After months of feedback from partner agencies and advisory committees, and “recalibrating” due to a budget shortfall, TriMet has released its latest designs for how bicycle riders will pass through its new bus stations as part of the Division Transit project. An online open house went live last week and is accepting public comments through July 12th.

We last shared TriMet’s plans a few weeks ago. Since then, the agency has held two open houses and firmed up the design.

TriMet is grappling with how to maintain a protected bike lane while achieving all the other design and budget goals for the project (primary among them is to increase bus speeds and reliability). When we took our first close look just over one year ago, TriMet planned on a design where the bike lane would go behind the bus island (something similar to this scenario in London). Now the design routes the bike lane between passengers and the bus.

Here’s what they presented in June 2017:

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In September 2017:

In October 2017:

And here’s the latest design again:

This view gives you a different sense of how it will all come together (the teal/purple sections are protected bike lanes, the blue is the bus station):

According to their latest maps, TriMet plans to build eight of these “Integrated–Shared Bicycle and Pedestrian” stations — all east of 82nd. The locations include: 84th Place westbound, 87th eastbound, both sides of the street west of the I-205 path, and in Gresham on both sides of the street at 174th and 182nd.

One of the key aspects of the design you can help TriMet finalize is how wide the bike lane and the boarding strip (aka “alighting area”) should be. This is the “to be determined” part of the cross-section in the drawings above. According to discussions I’ve overheard, the concerns is that a wider alighting area will encourage people to stand on it and result in more blockage of the bike lane (TriMet wants people to wait further back on the sidewalk). But a narrower alighting area might not do enough to slow down bicycle users and create a safe space for passengers.

Please share your feedback with TriMet at the online open house before July 12th. Construction on this project is due to start fall 2019 and be ready for service mid-2022.

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

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Activists hope to give Enhanced Transit Corridors Plan more teeth at first Council hearing today

Posted on June 20th, 2018 at 9:06 am.

This PBOT graphic shows where they want to make transit better.

UPDATE: The plan was adopted 3-0.

At 2:00 pm today (6/20) Portland City Council is set to hear public testimony on the Enhanced Transit Corridors plan. The move will allow the Portland Bureau of Transportation to move forward with design and development of projects aimed at making transit faster, more reliable, and ultimately more competitive than driving.
[Read more…]

TriMet seeks bike user feedback for new Division Transit Project station design

Posted on June 12th, 2018 at 2:54 pm.

TriMet’s latest design for stations in the Division Transit Project.

As TriMet inches ever closer to the final design of their $175 million Division Transit Project, the agency once again needs feedback on how best to handle bicycle users at new bus stations. And with protected bike lanes becoming a more common feature citywide, whatever TriMet decides to use could become the new standard.[Read more…]

‘Rogue’ union member blamed for candidate question tying road diets to bus driver attacks

Posted on April 10th, 2018 at 1:58 pm.

We’re still friends, right?
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

Someone snuck their “pet issue” into an official questionnaire.

One of the many roles BikePortland plays in the regional transportation sphere is to keep people honest. A recent episode involving a candidate questionnaire gone wrong is a good illustration of that.

Last week a candidate running in an election in Washington County alerted us to a questionnaire from the Northwest Oregon Labor Council (NOLC). “Check out question #12,” he wrote to me in an email.

Here’s the question:

The City of Portland and Metro have advanced a concept they believe will motivate the general public to get out of their cars and seek alternative modes of transportation. Using speed bumps, bioswales, road diets, lane elimination, car lanes turned into bike only lanes, curb extensions and speed reductions to encourage more people to use Mass Transit. The unintended consequence is that it makes it impossible for Bus Operators, who share the same roads, to meet their schedules resulting in a record number of attacks on drivers. The number of assaults has nearly doubled each of the last four years.

Please share your thoughts on this strategy and do you think it makes sense to continue?

[Read more…]

Guest post: Candidly, TriMet (part two)

Posted on March 22nd, 2018 at 11:13 am.

Aaron Brown.

This is the second of a two-part article by Aaron Brown, founder of No More Freeways PDX and former board president of Oregon Walks. The first part is here.

So, candidly, if freeway expansion is so obviously detrimental to the TriMet’s goals and ability to provide service to the region, why has TriMet supported it? Urban scholar Jacob Arbinder wrote in Democracy Journal last month about the bumbling, abysmal state of transportation governance in cities like New York and Boston. The piece is worth reading at length; he identifies the problem as a “broken political economy,” which is a fancy, academic way of stating that transit agencies suffer from a dearth of adequate democratic mechanisms for community input and budgetary accountability.
[Read more…]