Thank you for this insight, Jonathan.
To be honest, I am a bit surprised and disappointed to hear that bicycle advocacy in Portland has been waning. In my six years or so in San Diego I feel that I have been a vocal advocate for cycling but the going has been tough. However, I am heartened that there is now a relatively vocal and active albeit small group of folks working to make SD the bike haven it ought to be.
My wife and I are transitioning to Portland in large part to be surrounded by others who believe in a human-scale approach to building infrastructure. As I have said here before, I will use whatever time and energy I have to advocate for world-class cycling, pedestrian and public transit infrastructure. To that end, I wonder if others reading this have a roadmap in mind as to how this can be made a reality. It seems to me that Portland’s governmental infrastructure is at least setup to implement such infrastructure but there must be some gaps in making this come to life. Where are these gaps? Why has citizen advocacy receded? What can we learn from the Dutch and Danes who 50+ years ago tackled car culture and implemented and continue to implement innovative, safe and clean ways to move people around?
Ten years ought to be enough time build a world-class infrastructure; how can we make it happen?
P.S. I hope my thoughts are not taken as presumptuous coming from an “outsider”, but I believe so deeply that cycling, walking and public transit are essential to a healthy city. I hope we can together make Portland a leader again.