barack obama

Bike parking will be at a premium for tomorrow’s Obama visit

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) by on October 19th, 2010 at 11:20 am

BTA Bike Commute Challenge Party-2

Temporary bike parking like this will
be used at the Convention Center tomorrow.
(Photos © J. Maus)

President Obama arrives in Portland tomorrow to stump for gubernatorial candidate John Kitzhaber at the Oregon Convention Center. The event starts at 5:00 p.m., at the peak of evening rush hour and in a part of town that is — thanks to streetcar and other construction projects — already quite traffic-snarled. The roads will be a complete mess.

Getting there by bike (or MAX) will be much easier; but if you go by bike, will there be a place to park?

Back in 2008, during the North American Handmade Bike Show, huge crowds quickly overflowed the Convention Center’s bike racks (and 500 indoor spaces that were made available especially for the show). When people started locking up to nearby railings, Convention Center security guards cut the locks and started impounding bikes.
[Read more…]

Will Mrs. Obama’s obesity focus boost Safe Routes to School efforts?

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) by on January 19th, 2010 at 12:52 pm

Michelle Obama could help bring
Safe Routes to Schools to the table.
(Photo: White House on Flickr)

America has a long legacy of First Ladies who have used their diplomatic profile to further specific causes, so I was very pleased to learn that Michelle Obama’s focus would be obesity.

Anyone who has spent time in the bike advocacy world knows that the obesity epidemic is often thrown around as a key reason why our country needs to put a higher priority on biking. So, is the First Lady’s focus on obesity and “healthy families” something to get excited about?[Read more…]

Blumenauer lends a hand to Obama bikers

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) by on January 21st, 2009 at 12:25 pm

Blumenauer presents the
coveted ticket.
(Photos: James Koski)

Back in December, Los Angeleno Ryan Bowen and an energetic band of friends and followers left L.A. for D.C. on their bikes to be a part of the Inaugural event. They dubbed their journey “Biking for Obama” and kept up a great blog about their adventure.

And, showing a bit of hopeful audacity, they didn’t even have tickets to the Inaugural when they left.

Fortunately, D.C.’s highest-profile bike-lover (and Portland resident), Congressman Earl Blumenauer answered their plea for tickets on their website and presented them to Bowen and a friend on behalf of the Congressional Bike Caucus and Bowen’s hometown Rep. Xavier Becerra (D-Calif.).[Read more…]

Press Release: Blumenauer joins Obama bikers

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) by on January 19th, 2009 at 12:34 pm

This was sent to us from Blumenauer’s office on Saturday. We’re hoping for some photos and will likely put something on the Front Page if/when we get them.

Biking for Obama Riders Finally Arrive In DC Joined by Rep. Blumenauer after Month-Long Bike Trek Cross-country for Inauguration

Blumenauer and Becerra Answer Cyclists’ Plea for Inauguration Tickets

Washington, DC – Tomorrow, Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.), Chair of the Congressional Bike Caucus, will join Ryan Bowen, Founder of Biking for Obama, and over fifty riders as the Biking for Obama team bikes the final leg of their cross-country bicycle trek into Washington, D.C. for Tuesday’s Presidential Inauguration. Bowen and fellow cyclists left Los Angeles on bike over a month and 13 days ago, with no inauguration tickets, on what they called “the Highway of Hope”.[Read more…]

Bikes are the hot ticket at Obama inauguration

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) by on January 8th, 2009 at 10:23 am

Congressional Reception -12.jpg

Eric Gilliland, seen here at the 2008
National Bike Summit in D.C., is
executive director of WABA.
(Photo © J. Maus)

With hundreds of thousands of people expected to flock to the National Mall for the inauguration of President-elect Barack Obama later this month, the Washington Area Bicyclist Association (WABA) wants to make it as easy as possible for people to get there by bike.

Yesterday, they officially announced that they’ll staff several free bike valet stations during the event.

Reached via email this morning, Gilliland said that bikes will still not be allowed in the hard security perimeter but, “everything will be fine outside of that.”

To further sweeten the deal, WABA — with sponsorship help from America Bikes and Dero Bike Racks — will give everyone who takes advantage of the bike valets a commemorative claim check and spoke card.[Read more…]

Obama at press conference: LaHood has “created opportunities for bikers”

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) by on December 19th, 2008 at 1:42 pm

“He has not only helped rebuild our landscape, he’s helped beautify it by creating opportunities for bikers and runners to enjoy our great outdoors.”
— Obama on LaHood

Congressional Quarterly has the full transcript from today’s press conference where President-elect Obama introduced his choice for Transportation Secretary, Ray LaHood. Below are some key excerpts interspersed with my thoughts…

This is Obama giving some background (emphasis mine):

“…Our economy boomed in the 20th century when President Eisenhower remade the American landscape by building the interstate highway system.
[Read more…]

Obama makes pick for Transpo. Secretary (it’s not who you think it is)

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) by on December 17th, 2008 at 5:18 pm

Introducing Ray LaHood, your
next Transportation Secretary.

On Friday, President Elect Obama is expected to make the formal announcement that Ray LaHood, a retiring seven-term Republican congressman from Peoria Illinois, will be his Transportation Secretary.

LaHood is a long-time friend of Obama and has worked closely in the past with Obama’s Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel.

Back in May, we (and others) speculated that maybe former Portland City Commissioner and now Congressman Earl Blumenauer would get the nod. That rumor evaporated pretty quickly, but then New York City’s shining transportation star Janette Sadik-Khan became the hot rumor. Other names on the short list included biking’s political founding father, Minnesota Congressman Jim Oberstar.[Read more…]

Obama: “Everyone benefits if we can leave our cars, walk, bicycle…”

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) by on November 19th, 2008 at 4:18 pm

“I will work to provide states and local governments with the resources they need to address sprawl and create more livable communities.”
— President-elect Obama, in a letter to T4 America

President-elect Barack Obama has responded to an online petition circulated by national advocacy group Transportation For America (remember them?).

T4 America reported on their blog today that 3,300 people signed onto a petition that was delivered to Senators John McCain and Barack Obama before their final debate back in October. The petition urged them to tell T4 America their plans for, “keeping America moving and creating new jobs by investing in our critical transportation system and infrastructure.”

Here’s a snip from the petition letter:[Read more…]

Urge Obama to keep his transportation promises

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) by on November 7th, 2008 at 3:05 pm

Transportation for America, a national advocacy group working to hasten a paradigm shift in how the federal government approaches transportation infrastructure decisions, wants you tell President-elect Obama to make good on promises made during his campaign.

Here’s the text of the sample letter:

Dear President-elect Obama:

First of all…Congratulations! Your election, and results from down-ballot votes around the country, represents a resounding call for a new direction.

The Transportation for America campaign, representing more than 100 organizations and thousands of energized citizens around the country, salutes you. And we join you in seeking infrastructure investment that will stimulate the economy now and lay the groundwork for a clean-energy future that is less dependent on oil.[Read more…]

Sadik-Khan mentioned as possible Obama pick

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) by on November 5th, 2008 at 11:52 am

With expectations that president-elect Obama might pick his cabinet in the next few weeks, we’re following his pick for Transportation Secretary very closely.

Previously, we reported early rumors that Obama was considering former City of Portland transportation commissioner and now U.S. Congressman Earl Blumenauer or Minnesota Congressman Jim Oberstar (whose arguably the most important and revered politician to the national bike movement).
[Read more…]