In 1896 Portland had a thriving cycling culture complete with bike-specific fashion purveyors, bike-friendly restaurants, bike shops, and local businesses hoping to cater to our many “wheelmen” and women.
The best printed bike map in the Portland region will soon be a collector’s item.
Metro announced yesterday that they will no longer sell the printed version of the vaunted Bike There! map.
The map was first published in 1983 and has gone through nine major updates. The ninth (and last) edition came out in May 2015.
In an email to shops that stocked the map, Metro’s Marne Duke said the decision was made because of, “A combination of the decline in demand of printed maps and the increase in free map offerings from local cities and counties around the region.”
The news was met with disappointment by many of our friends on Twitter:
“Bummer. Finding this map at the grocery store was what got me to start biking in Portland.” — Nick Falbo.
“No! I am definitely of the era that loves a paper map.” — Mike Mason
“I don’t use apps or Google Maps or whatever. I like good old printed maps.” — Susan R
The City of Portland has edited a section of their official bike map to more accurately depict a dangerous gap in the bike lane where man was killed in 2015.
As we reported at the time, Martin Greenough might have been on his first-ever bike commute when he was hit and killed by an intoxicated driver on NE Lombard. Greenough was hit while bicycling through a dangerous gap in the bike lane that occurs where the lanes narrow to go under an overpass. Unfortunately, the official City of Portland bike map Greenough used to plot his course did not show the gap. The map incorrectly labeled that section of NE Lombard where it goes under 42nd Avenue as having a continuous bike lane.
What did cycling routes in Portland look like over 40 years ago? That’s something we’d never known until coming across this “From here to there by bicycle” map.
If you haven’t read Jonathan’s haunting, exclusive report that Martin Greenough seems to have been killed on his very first bike commute, two weeks after moving to Portland, it’s not one to miss.
Part of the story is that the city’s official bike map inaccurately suggests that Lombard is a fine place to bike. But as BikePortland reader El Biciclero pointed out in a must-read response, the problem here is not really with the map.
The problem is that the only way to bike around Portland without near-death experiences is to use a map.
Last spring, the City of Portland created a fantastic new map of every fatality and major injury on its records for a decade. Now, regional government Metro has followed suit with a similar map that includes many other cities and unincorporated areas, too.
It’s not just an essential tool for understanding the context of future traffic collisions. (Should we be arguing about the specific circumstances of collision X, or does something seem to be inherently wrong with the street it happened on?) It’s also a source of some useful insights about road safety in Portland.
The definitive regional bike map has been updated with lots of new routes and a significant price cut.
Metro’s Bike There! map, published since 1982, will release its ninth edition next month in the first update since 2010. There’s a lot to keep up with: the number of mapped bike routes in the Oregon side of the Portland metro area has shot up 71 percent since 2010.
The current bike map shows 675 miles of on-street routes and 234 miles of off-street paths. For the new one, it’ll be 1,008 miles of on-street routes and 550 of off-street.