Archive | November, 2013

NOW is the Time to Pay Attention to the SW Corridor

The “purpose and need” statement for the SW Corridor project is now out for review. This is perhaps one of the most critical documents in the history of the project. The purpose and need statement becomes the yardstick for all future decisions in the project.

Arguably a flawed purpose and need statement is what allowed the Columbia River Cross project to bypass all the reasonable alternatives and reinforced the rationale for a large highway solution.

The SW Corridor purpose and need may not be flawed, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t opportunities for improvement. On my first read it appears to me that there could be stronger language about active transportation and better linkages to key land use policies like the “Healthy Connected City” plank of the Portland Plan.

You can read the draft here (PDF) and comment via the survey here.

 

Updated Again: Sharpening Our Game on Bicycle Advocacy

Updated 11/14/13:

BTA may be squirming a bit on their infographic, but the advocacy continues – they’re holding an Advocacy 101 training on November 19 (5:30pm), pizza by Old Town Pizza.

Updated 11/13/13:

BTA has updated the graphic with revised numbers. You can see the new graphic and the explanation of the changes at their site.

Original Post 11/12/13:

Portland has the highest bicycle commute mode share in the country, so you might think that the entire populace must embrace our progressive posture on all things cycling.

Not quite.

Here and around the country members of our communities don’t always share our understanding of the benefits of cycling, which extend even to those who don’t get on a bicycle. Locally, Steve Novick, our newest City Commissioner, likes to talk about how people who bike lower health insurance costs for all of us.

Nationally, the Green Lane Project is trying to get smarter on how to talk about cycling. An example: “cycle track” doesn’t resonate with most people. But “protected bike lane” has more positive associations.

Back on the local level, the Bicycle Transportation Alliance has taken on the debunking of an old canard, that cyclists freeload on our streets and roads. The infographic below that BTA released today makes the case plain that those of us who bike are more than paying our share.

I’m looking forward to continuing to up our game and make our case!

Road_Cost_Infographic_PNG

Click here for a printable version of the infographic.

Open Thread for week of November 10-16, 2013

Stuff in the news:

KBOO Bike Show: Ethicist

 Listen to the show (mp3, 25.8MB)

Michelle and Tori talk with Randy Cohen, formerly “The Ethicist” columnist for the New York Times, now host of “Person Place Thing“. They discuss the ethics of everything from paying your transit fare, to who gets the last bike share bike at a station, to whether it’s ethical (if not legal) to ride through a red light if there is no cross traffic. Randy claims to be “much less nice” than either Michelle or Tori, but withdraws the comment when Michelle confesses to dealing physically with a bike messenger who tried to run her down in a crosswalk.