I know nobody here has a crystal ball, but I am wondering if there is any insider information about the likelihood that the Bicycle Plan for 2030 will be fully implemented. Specifically, does anyone have insight into whether the “bike lanes” (hopefully fully protected) on the busy business corridors of SE Burnside, Belmont, Hawthorne, Division and Powell will get the treatment needed?
As I leave San Diego, I see that the fervor for better and more complete bicycle infrastructure is building here. I am obviously hoping that Portland will continue on its path toward a “world-class” bicycling city.
Thank you in advance for your thoughts.
I’d love to hear from folks with better & more current info but from what I can tell, Mark Markovich’s 2010 cartoon is still on track: Friday Cartoon: Don't Let It Sit - BikePortland.org
this is a long conversation… But to be short… Keep in mind that the 2030 Bike Plan was always just that, a plan. And an aspirational one at that. It was never intended as a checklist of projects to be built in a specific timeframe or with specific funding. It was/is a tool for advocates to pick up and use to pressure the city to implement it. The problem is we haven’t had enough advocacy and the politics have not been strong enough for years. Bicycling has really fallen off the radar in Portland politics/public in many ways and I think that hurts our ability to make the 2030 plan a reality. We are making progress here and there and there are many good things that have happened since the plan passed; but unfortunately we are not moving fast enough to meet our goals. We need to be more aggressive but the urgency just hasn’t been there. It’s like the Lorax… “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.” Glad to see that you care. We need some fresh energy around here!
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.
BikeLoud PDX is a local bicycling activist group that has recently produced a detailed critique of PBOT’s 2030 Bicycle Plan update.
FYI, BikeLoud PDX meets monthly, currently via Zoom. The next meeting is coming up next Wednesday, August 19, at 7pm. You can sign up for the BikeLoud PDX email list to get the details. More information about BikeLoud PDX is available on its website.
The Portland City Council is scheduled to review the 2030 bike plan at its meeting on September 24 at 2pm.
Thank you for sharing the critique; I have started to read it.
I will try to make the Zoom meeting. And, interested to hear how the City Council meeting goes in September.
Appreciate the information.
We’re rescheduling our next general meeting for a week from Wednesday, on August 26 at 7pm via Zoom. We will be discussing the 2030 bike plan and the upcoming City Council “bike day” on September 24.