West Side

Guest article: Why I perservere on the west side’s mean streets

by on February 21st, 2017 at 9:47 am

Ride Along with Ali Reis-36

(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

[Note: This article is by BikePortland subscriber and Beaverton resident Naomi Fast. Naomi’s perspective is formed in part by the fact that she doesn’t own a car and she’s lived and worked in both Portland and Beaverton.]

In my first subscriber post, I wrote about Beaverton, where I moved in 2013 after a decade in Portland. It occurs to me a few people might wonder how I live without a car in the suburbs. Sometimes it’s not easy! But living without a car is not all that rare, and bike commuting infrastructure is becoming a more vocal priority as Washington County looks to the future.

But challenges in the here-and-now are plentiful, and sometimes I feel frustrated.

For example: Recently, I was riding in dangerous gravel in the SW Murray Blvd bike lane near the Nike Woods, and had to move into the main traffic lane at times to avoid skidding. At the red light, a woman holding her phone in one hand, deep in conversation, drove up on my left. I motioned her to roll down her window. I let her know I was needing to take the lane at times, so please keep an eye out for me! She said she’d drive more to her left to give me room, so that was nice.
[Read more…]

From Bronze to Silver to Gold? A dispatch from Beaverton

by on January 16th, 2017 at 1:37 pm

[Note: This post was submitted by BikePortland Subscriber Ms. Fast through our Subscriber Post system. We think it deserves a wider reach so we’ve posted it here on the Front Page. Remember, if you are a subscriber you are also a contributor! We would love to amplify your voice and share your experiences with a wider audience. Sign up here. – Jonathan]

After a decade of living and biking in Portland, I moved to Beaverton in 2013. As I get to know my new city, I’m more and more glad to be here.

Just in the last couple of years, Beaverton:

– Adopted a “Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Plan” (2015)
– Was recognized as the safest city in Oregon, followed by Hillsboro (2015)
– Joined the National Welcoming Cities and Counties Initiative, becoming the first city in Oregon to nationally declare itself a Welcoming City (2015)
– Tied with Cupertino, CA for a first-place City Cultural Diversity Award by The National League of Cities (2015)
– Unanimously passed a “Resolution to Declare Support for the Muslim Community & Reaffirm Beaverton as a Welcoming City” (2016)
– and in the first days of 2017, Beaverton became a Sanctuary City and opened its first severe weather shelter

Yes, we’ve got solid leadership in Beaverton! But what about the biking? [Read more…]

‘Carefree Commuter Challenge’ starts July 1st

by on June 27th, 2013 at 3:23 pm

The Carefree Commuter Challenge starts next month and the folks at Drive Less Save More are expecting over 2,000 people from across the region to take part.

The Challenge is just one component of a state-funded marketing program aimed at encouraging folks to get around with something other than their car. Drive Less Save More was launched by the Oregon Department of Transportation in 2006 and since then they’ve partnered up with organizations throughout the state to promote biking, walking, carpooling and transit.
[Read more…]

Proposed ‘Scenic Bikeway’ would connect Hillsboro to Banks-Vernonia Trail

by on December 17th, 2012 at 11:13 am

Family trip to Stub Stewart State Park-13-80

The beautiful roads just outside Hillsboro.
(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)

Oregon’s State Scenic Bikeway program has really taken off in recent years. Routes have sprung up all over the state and they’re spurring economic development and providing people with great bike adventures. But so far, none of them are very close to Portland.

Now comes word from the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department that there’s a proposal on the table to designate a new scenic bikeway that would be relatively close to Portland and would begin just south of Hillsboro.[Read more…]

Tonquin Trail gets new name and a master plan

by on December 6th, 2012 at 2:05 pm

Rollin’ through the Ice Age.
(Photo: Metro)

The Tonquin Trail — a 22 mile system of paths that will someday connect the cities of Sherwood, Tualatin and Wilsonville — is now officially named the Ice Age Tonquin Trail. The project has also just completed a master plan that is set to be forwarded onto city, regional, and county officials after a slate of public hearings early next year.

About 12,000 to 17,000 years ago, the same cataclysmic floods that started in Montana and created the Columbia River Gorge, also spilled into the Willamette Valley and left an a geologic imprint that remains today. The National Park Service has recognized the path of these floods and passed the Ice Age Floods National Geologic Trail into law in 2009.

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Persistent activism gets ODOT and police focused on Sylvan overpass problems

by on November 27th, 2012 at 11:48 am

Google street view of Sylvan overpass.

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Hillsboro school custodian starts student bike repair program

by on November 10th, 2011 at 8:25 am

Still from KATU News video (watch their story here).

A reader brought to our attention a great story about the power of bicycles and how one person can make a difference.

The head custodian at Poynter Middle School in Hillsboro, John Sarrazin, has turned a chance encounter with a student who needed help fixing his bike into a full-fledged afterschool program. Here’s how a teacher at the school described to us how it all came about:[Read more…]

Owner of Hillsboro coffeehouse says “cyclists” have worn out welcome – UPDATED

by on April 14th, 2011 at 2:05 pm

Anyone who has ridden regularly with a group or club knows the importance of a great, pre-ride meeting spot. For Portland Velo, a large cycling club based west of Forest Park, their “home base” since 2006 has been Longbottom Coffeehouse in Hillsboro. Over the years, Longbottom has become not just one of Portland Velo’s sponsors, but a haven for folks looking for a great place to get caffeinated before hitting the many miles of rural roads nearby.

Unfortunately, members of Portland Velo recently found out that the owner of Longbottom isn’t exactly thrilled about all the attention from the biking crowd. According to one club member, a sign has been posted on the front entrance that makes it clear where Longbottom stands…[Read more…]

Despite sketchy crossing, kids still walk to school in Bethany

by on October 29th, 2010 at 12:47 pm

With no crosswalk or light, students rely
on a police officer to cross Springville
Road in Bethany.
(Photos: Kellie Rice)

This past Walk and Bike to School day was a smashing success. Throughout Portland’s inner neighborhoods, schools reported overflowing bike racks, crowded crosswalks, and record turnouts.

That’s all fine and good, but our experience of walking and biking to school in Portland isn’t shared by everyone in the region. In newly developed suburbs of Washington County that lack a grid street network and a people-first engineering philosophy — walking and biking to school can be a much greater challenge.[Read more…]

City of Tigard bike news roundup

by on July 6th, 2010 at 11:13 am

New racks have been installed
in downtown Tigard.
(Photo: WTA)

Remember Tigard? It’s a great little town about 10 miles southwest of Portland. Back in January we held a great Get Together event at a pub right alongside the Fanno Creek Trail. The room was packed with advocates, city staffers, and even a few politicians.

Today, I’m happy to share a few news items that show how Tigard continues to move in the right direction for bikes. [Read more…]