Tossing and Tortured 'Till Dawn

I come back to you now, at the turn of the tide.

Friday, October 03, 2008

Viva Portlandia!

You never know what you had, they say, right? I left Portland over two years ago, and was only scratching the surface of appreciating the veloculture that's progressed into a frenzy there. Jonathan does a thorough job of showing off the City of Roses and Bicycles -- in particular, check THIS (caution: flash) out. Looking at the photos, I might think I was seeing part of an charity event ride like the Portland Bridge Pedal, but, it's just morning rush hour on a early day in mid-fall.

(Bikeportland's blog was down as of 12:00pm 3rd October. No explanation at this point, hopefully minor technical difficulties that will be resolved soon. -- ed)

If you build it, they will come says the 1989 cliche about a baseball field, but is it the truth with bike infrastructure? Portland had a great network of bike lanes as it was, but they've filled out the rest of the infrastructure admirably. It might be the most european-style bike-friendly city in the country. Even better than the bike boulevards, the racks and the lanes, the signage and the parking oases, is this:

People are using it.

Check it out:



This is outside Stumptown Coffee on SE Belmont. Notice: Spaces to fit 1.5 cars have been removed. In their place are space to secure perhaps a dozen bicycles, perhaps more.

Also in the Hawthorne neigborhood, new Bike Oases have been installed. As opposed to the bike corrals, like the one on Belmont, these allow for parking on an extended sidewalk, feature space for perhaps 25 bicycles.



Here's what it looks like with some bikes in it!



So you know it's not just quirky Hawthorne, here's the one outside the Ace Hotel (A tres cool place to stay, if you like, and it also features a stumptown coffee that opens into its lobby)



And here's Northeast Portland, at Whole Foods:



All in all, the lesson is this:



(Driving a car is still okay in Portland, but expect to share the road. Just like your mommy taught you to.)

1 Comments:

  • At 12:08 AM , Blogger K-Man said...

    Yay! In front of some of my favorite places... although... when I'm up it's usually on my moto.

     

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