Archive | September, 2012

Sharing the Benefits

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One of the keys to equity in transportation investments is to make sure that all sectors of a society share in the benefits. For cycling, one of the best looks at this is the Community Cycling Center’s “Understanding the Barriers to Cycling” report (PDF).

It looks at the very specific needs of different groups. For example, at Hacienda, a housing development in NE Portland, bicycle theft is a big issue. So secure storage is a barrier.

At New Columbia, the issue was keeping bikes in good repair. That’s why it was a special pleasure to attend the grand opening of New Columbia’s “Bike Hub” tonight. The hub is a project of the Community Cycling Center and a variety of public and private organizations, including the Portland Development Commission. The structure itself was a design-build project done by college students (a joint program including PNCA) in just a few weeks.

In addition to the basic repair shed, the project also includes a bicycle-themed sculpture. And at tonight’s festivities there was an open-air repair clinic.

Here’s to keeping those bikes working!

KBOO Bike Show: Reve Tour Ladies

Listen to the show (mp3, 26.5MB)

The Reve Tour ladies who rode each stage Tour de France this year a day before the pros. We hear about their experiences as women taking on an insurmountable challenge. We also take an in-depth look at the state of women’s cycling as a sport with Sarai Snyder of Cyclofemme/Girl-Bike-Love and ??Kristy Scrymgeour, Team Owner for the professional women’s cycling team, Specialized-Lululemon.

Guest Post: Proposal for Upgraded Columbia Corridor/Bypass 30 Reroute

Another guest post by frequent reader and commenter dan w. We wish to remind readers that we are happy to run guest posts–simply email submissions to one of the moderators–ES.

Serving the Rivergate Industrial District, Portland Airport and a plethora of other
industrial/employment centers, the Columbia Corridor–aka Bypass 30 and its parallel routes–is a vital freight and commuter corridor but isn’t always on the collective radar. Indeed, this study dating back to pre-Y2K days is one of the few documents I could find that focus on this corridor. The document defines Columbia Corridor as extending between Rivergate and Troutdale, but for my proposal outlined below I’m focusing on the section between Rivergate and I-205.

After the jump….
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(Click on link for full-sized image)

Mostly utilizing existing ROW, rerouting Bypass 30 onto this newly upgraded corridor would help relieve pressure on congested I-84 (freight rail improvements as outlined by local and state proposals are also a key component but I opted not to include them on my map). Also, while current bus service only runs along a few segments of the corridor, BRT or something similar along its entire length has the potential to serve countless employers. It can connect with the Red and Yellow MAX lines and various bus routes including 6, 70, 72 and 75.

Phase 1 should be relatively inexpensive and low-impact to implement (assuming a full freeway isn’t the chosen option). One option is an expressway, which is a combination of at-grade and grade-separated interchanges (think Hwy 224 between McLoughlin and I-205). In fact, several grade-separated facilities already exist on this corridor, and frontage roads and driveway consolidations along various stretches should also help with traffic flow. The key is to not have implementation of the corridor be so disruptive that it ends up eliminating huge chunks of the industrial facilities to which we’re trying to improve access.

EAST SEGMENT:
Option A – NE Lombard to MLK (includes new ROW between Lombard Pl and MLK/ Columbia intersection)
Option B – Columbia Blvd to MLK

WEST SEGMENT:
Option A – MLK to Marine Dr to N. Lombard
Option B – Columbia Blvd (includes new ROW to the north between Portland Rd and Upland Dr to skirt residential area) to N. Burgard

Although it tacks a couple of extra miles onto the corridor, I prefer Option A for the west segment because: 1) It generally avoids residential areas, 2) MLK between I-5 and Columbia is already pretty much limited access, 3) unlike Option B, a full interchange already exists at I-5, and 4) it offers direct access to my proposed Columbia River bridge.

Both east segment options have their advantages, but I’d prefer to have BRT run on Columbia rather than Lombard because it would directly serve more employers.

Phase 2…. Here comes the fun expensive part. Inspired by others’ posts on this blog, this part of the proposal calls for the corridor to connect to new bridges over the Willamette and Columbia, the latter being a third-bridge CRC alternative.

September 2012 Open Thread

As the kids get ready to head back to school, YouthPasses in hand, it’s time for a new Open Thread.

  • Your last reminder: New routes and fares take effect this weekend.
  • Jarrett Walker reminisces on the 30th anniversary of Portland’s transit grid; and Zef follows up here.
  • Clackamas County votes on requiring citizen approval for rail spending on September 18. County officials insist that the initiative cannot apply to MLR; petitioners disagree and are now circulating another petition to target MLR more specifically.
  • Eastside Streetcar opens September 22. If there are any technical difficulties, Chris has promised to help push. :)
  • Next month, the Oregon Symphony, as part of their Kids Series of concerts, will host a performance by the Pacific Youth Choir and Dance West entitled “Trains, Trams, Trolleys and more“, featuring renditions of numerous transportation-themed pieces from various eras. Where else can you hear “Flight of the Valkyries” and “Bicycle Built for Two” on the same bill?