homelessness

Springwater path update: Neighborhood meetings, a community walk, and the City’s stance

Avatar by on January 22nd, 2016 at 11:00 am

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(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

We’re continuing to track the concerns about people who live outside along the Springwater path, the conditions of the path, and the safety of people who ride bikes on it.

Our two recent stories on the subject — one about concerns from path users and the current state of law enforcement response to them, and the other that shared the perspectives of the homeless residents themselves — has sparked a big discussion.

This issue obviously goes way beyond bicycling. We’re covering it because it impacts conditions on properties managed by the Portland Parks & Recreation and Bureau of Transportation that have transportation corridors running through them (like the Springwater, Waterfront Park, and the Greeley path).

Here are a few updates:
[Read more…]

What five people say about living outside along the Springwater path

Michael Andersen (Contributor) by on January 19th, 2016 at 10:49 am

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A string of tents, shopping carts and a few bedrolls are visible along the Springwater Corridor near 82nd Avenue.
(Photos: M.Andersen/BikePortland)

Last week’s post about a number of people living in tents and outside along the Springwater Corridor near 82nd Avenue has sparked a lot of discussion, but one big thing was absent from it: the perspectives of people actually living there.
[Read more…]

Springwater path users feel threatened by campers, police say their hands are tied

Avatar by on January 14th, 2016 at 2:17 pm

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Springwater path near SE 82nd.
(Photo: Mark Mollenkopf)

Neighborhood advocates and residents say conditions on the Springwater Corridor path near its intersection of SE 82nd have reached a boiling point. Things have gotten so bad that local residents have dubbed it the “Avenue of Terror.” At issue is the behavior of people who live in tents and under tarps adjacent to the path and the impact their presence is having on users of the path and the surrounding community.

In recent weeks we’ve heard from several readers with concerns about the situation and from a Portland Police Bureau officer who says there’s not enough officers to deal with the issue and a federal court decision has constrained their enforcement power.
[Read more…]

Ride Along with Kimberlee Chambers: Gresham to inner southeast Portland

Avatar by on July 1st, 2015 at 1:32 pm

Ride Along with Kimberlee Chambers

Kimberlee Chambers crossing SE 122nd and Halsey.
(Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

— This post was made possible by Portland Design Works, a local company that designs beautiful and functional parts and accessories for everyday cycling. Kimberlee is one of three winners of our Ride Along Contest held last March.

From neighborhood highways to neighborhood greenways, from bike paths that double as both wildlife corridors and homes to families with nowhere else to go, Kimberlee Chambers’ 12-mile work commute offers a stunning diversity of riding experiences.[Read more…]

Ride Along with Ben and Kate Cogdill: Downtown streets and secret paths

Avatar by on April 28th, 2015 at 4:34 pm

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Ben and Kate Cogdill outside her preschool in northwest Portland.
(Photos by J. Maus/BikePortland)

— This post was made possible by Portland Design Works, a local company that designs beautiful and functional parts and accessories for everyday cycling. Ben Cogdill is one of three winners of our Ride Along Contest that will be featured in the coming months.

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In many ways Ben, Jenica and Kate Cogdill are a typical Portland family. But when it comes to getting around, they’re a rare breed. The Cogdills live and work downtown and bicycles suffice as their family vehicle. While Portland’s inner neighborhoods have some of highest rates of family biking anywhere, it’s uncommon to see kid-toting parents amid the hustle and bustle of the central city.

[Read more…]

‘Braking Cycles’ sets out to serve homeless youth with bikes, coffee and art

Michael Andersen (Contributor) by on June 6th, 2014 at 9:38 am

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Transitional Youth founder Bert Waugh with
Braking Cycles founder and executive
director Rhona Mahl.
(Photo courtesy Mahl)

Two years ago, Rhona Mahl asked one of the young, homeless men she works with what his perfect job would look like.

“His was, he loved his bike,” the social service worker recalled in an interview Thursday. “He goes everywhere on his bike.”

The conversation inspired Mahl to create a social enterprise that could move him toward a job working with bicycles. This week, she said she’s on the cusp of making it happen: Braking Cycles, her nonprofit startup, would be a combination coffee shop/bike-resale charity/bike-gift-design firm.

Volunteers, she said, will staff the coffee bar and make bike-themed greeting cards and jewelry from old bike parts. They’ll also repair donated bicycles, which she then hopes to resell to local used bicycle shops. Mahl aims to hire experts in each field to train the volunteers, who will eventually be eligible for jobs at Braking Cycles or partner organizations.

[Read more…]

Parks bureau works to clear large encampment on Springwater Corridor

Avatar by on February 21st, 2014 at 10:34 am

The encampment along the Springwater path has grown considerably. Parks says they’re working on the issue.
(Photo by reader Steve B.)

Over the past several months a large encampment has sprung up along the Springwater Corridor Trail near the Ross Island Bridge. People are living directly adjacent to the popular and busy bicycling path that connects downtown Portland to Sellwood and points beyond. Their tarps, shelters and vehicles (bicycles) are situated between the path and the shore of the Willamette River.
[Read more…]

Non-profit uses bikes to engage, empower homeless youth

Avatar by on January 29th, 2013 at 2:46 pm

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L.T. and his bike.
(Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

New Avenues for Youth in downtown Portland is a haven for young, homeless Portlanders. The non-profit has been working to get 18-24 year olds off the street since 1997 with a variety of programs — from job placement to the arts and high school tutoring. Now they’ve got a fledgling new program aimed at using bicycles as a tool for transportation, education, and most importantly, empowerment.

Yesterday I met Abby Bohannon, a drop-in counselor and program coordinator who has worked at New Avenues since last fall. She got involved with bicycling when she moved to Portland six years ago and she knows first-hand how its impacted her life. “I ride for exercise, and for stress relief, and for the feeling of self-reliance I get by working on my own bike,” she shared while giving me a tour of their space on SW Oak Street.[Read more…]

Catching up with Wrench Raiders and their repair trike

Avatar by on February 15th, 2012 at 10:23 am

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C.J. Speelman (on the right) is now
rolling with a new cargo trike.
(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)

It’s been about a year since we introduced you to Wrench Raiders, the scrappy non-profit that provides free bike tune-ups for homeless Portlanders.

Since then, Wrench Raiders has continued to provide free help and basic parts to their customers every Sunday. And now, thanks to donations from the community, they’re expanding their reach with a mobile repair trike.

When I spoke with Wrench Raiders’ founder and head mechanic C.J. Speelman about how things have gone in the past year, he was clear that much of their success is due to the generosity of Portlanders.[Read more…]

‘PDX by Bike’ and a trike for Wrench Raiders: Two projects worth supporting

Avatar by on April 19th, 2011 at 10:14 am

Two great local projects.

Portland is full of creative people doing exciting things to make our community better. There are two projects/fundraising campaigns in particular that deserve more attention and support.

The first is a campaign by Wrench Raiders to raise money for a new trike. Wrench Raiders is the nascent non-profit we profiled back in January that is fixing bikes — and building community — for Portland’s homeless. [Read more…]