If you haven’t noticed, construction has begun on south Willamette Street, the first steps toward the test of a “road diet” on the stretch from 24th to 29th streets.
Preliminary work is underway on south Willamette Street, leading up to the re-striping.
The street will be reconfigured from four auto lanes to three auto lanes with bike lanes.
The actual re-striping of the road probably won’t happen until late March or early April, said Chris Henry, Transportation Planning Engineer for the city. Other work needs to happen first, he said, including widening the road at 24th and installing a traffic light at the driveway into Woodfield Station, the shopping area anchored by Market of Choice.
The widening at 24th is now underway. That will allow for the continuation of the southbound bike lane, which now ends at 23rd. The widening will also make room for a left-turn pocket for cars headed south on Willamette and wanting to turn left on 24th.
While the “test” road diet does not include repaving the street (that will happen in a few years), the city is also reparing some of the worst cracks and drainage problems that would have been in the new bike lanes.
Driveway lips have been ground smoother.
Some of that work is already done. Workers have also ground a number of driveway lips, to make it easier to turn a bike off the road into a business driveway.
The stretch of Willamette in question sees about 14000 automobile trips per day. That’s about 2,000 less than the older figure that was used when the street was initially studied and the road diet was proposed.
Because of vocal oppostion to the idea of a road diet from some businesses on Willamette, the City Council voted in 2014 to test the idea for a year. The council will take up the issue again in summer 2017 after reviewing how the street functioned under the test, and also considering results from an economic impact study of area businesses that is being conducted by the Community Service Center at the University of Oregon.
All of that will lead to a decision on how to re-stripe the street when it is fully repaved in 2018.
ODOT will now recommend traffic engineers use signs that say “Bikes on Roadway” instead of the old “Share the Road” signs.
The decision came at a recent meeting of the Traffic Control Devices Committee, following a presentation by Alexandra Phillips, Bicycle Recreation Specialist with Oregon Parks & Recreation Department, and Gary Obery of ODOT.
The decision doesn’t mean “Share the Road” signs already installed will be replaced, but that new signs or any in need of replacement for other reasons should be updated to “Bike on Roadway.”
Phillips and Obery reported on the history of two signs and also discussed complaints from bicyclists that “Share the Road” is confusing, and that some interpreted the signs as telling bikes to share the road.
So the questions put before the committee were:
- Should the “On Roaway” plaque be put back into the Sign Policy & Guidelines?
- Should “On Roaway” be preferred over “Share the Road” for new and replacement signs?
Members agreed the current plaque is confusing and the consensus was to revert to “On Roadway” in connection with not just the bicycle icon signs, but all vehicular traffic signs, including trucks and tractors, etc. (as listed in Figure 2C-9 of the online 2009 Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices, or MUTCD).
Committee member Scott McCanna noted that “On Roadway” doesn’t include the road shoulders under ORS 801.450 and this might be a litigation concern if a bicyclist gets hit on the shoulder. It was clarified this sign is actually meant for situations where bikes are expected in actual travel lanes. It was also clarified this would not affect Sharrow pavement markings since these are supposed to be used only on slower speed streets.
After some discussion, a motion to recommend ODOT state in the Sign Policy & Guidelines the “On Roadway” plaque is preferred over the “Share the Road” plaque was approved.
Eugene’s soon-to-be acting traffic engineer has won a fellowship to study road safety efforts in Sweden and Denmark next fall, according to the Jan. 28 Eugene City Council Newsletter.
Matt Rodrigues won a $2,000 award for travel expenses for the trip from the American Public Works Association’s Jennings Randolph International Fellowship.
Rodrigues will become Eugene’s acting-in-capacity Traffic Engineer beginning Feb. 1, filling the job vacated after Tom Larsen resigned following news that he had operated without a current engineering license for a number of years.
Rodrigues will specifically study how Vision Zero has been implemented in Sweden. Vision Zero is an effort to end fatalities and serious injuries on the streets. It originated in Sweden, and the Eugene City Council adopted Vision Zero as city policy this past November.
This sounds like good news for Eugene, a sign that staff will begin looking seriously at how to implement Vision Zero in Eugene. Done right, it should have a number of implications for people who walk or ride bikes.
Eugene’s traffic engineer has significant authority over the city’s public rights of way, and generally has to approve projects that improve conditions for bikes and pedestrians.
How do you get a 672 lb. rock from Lane Forest Products to your house? You can either pay them $75 and have it delivered by truck to the end of your driveway (and then what?)…or you can put it in a bike trailer and have it delivered to your back yard.
I wanted to make a water feature in my backyard so I purchased a beautiful basalt column from Lane Forest Products a few weeks ago and had them put it on hold while I arranged delivery with Pedalers Express, a human-powered delivery service affiliated with the Center for Appropriate Transport. This was an unusual delivery so I called Lane Forest Products with a question about loading the rock into the trailer. The conversation went something like this:
Me: “Hi, I bought a basalt column from you recently and I wanted to make sure the forklift tines would be narrow enough to slide the rock into a cargo trailer.”
Lane Forest Products: “Definitely, we can do it–what kind of trailer have you got?”
Me: “Uh, well, it’s actually a bike trailer. I’m having the rock delivered by bike.”
Lane Forest Products: “No you’re not.”
Me: “Yes, I am.”
Lane Forest Products: “You’re not going to move a 672 lb rock with a bike.”
Me: “Yes, I am.”
Here’s how it’s done:
Step 1: Buy the rock
Step 2: Load it onto a specially designed flat bed cargo trailer
Step 3: Hire Pedaler’s Express to move the rock. Here’s John gaining momentum…
Step 4: Have Jan give John a little help over the Autzen footbridge!
Step 5: Get some help wheeling the rock into your yard (1″ of clearance!)
Step 6: Enjoy the rock in its new home! (Note the hummingbird about to take a drink)
Thanks to the folks at Center for Appropriate Transport for all their help making this happen.
The city is looking to fill a bike-lane gap on Lincoln Street when the road is repaved this summer.
The street now has a bike lane north of 11th, and is a commonly used northbound bike route into downtown and the Whitaker. But the stretch from 13th to 11th avenues has no bicycle facilities at all, though many people on bikes access that stretch of Lincoln from 13th, the 12th Avenue bicycle boulevard, or the neighborhood along Lincoln south of 13th.
To add a bike lane, city staff would need to remove on-street parking on the east side of those two blocks.
Looking north on Lincoln, approaching the light at 11th Avenue.
City Transportation Planning staff has received a couple of letters from organizations on the street, encouraging the installation of a bike lane, one of them noting, “I talked to some of our neighbors in adjoining buildings, and write to say many of us strongly support a bike lane. … I’ve worked in our office … for nearly 16 years. … In my experience, the street parking spaces are very rarely all occupied. … By contrast, I do think that for safety purposes, Lincoln should have a dedicated bike lane on its east side. … Without a dedicated bike lane, the northbound bicyclists lack a truly safe, clear space to reach the dedicated bike lane on the north side of 11th.”
Removal of on-street parking requires an “administrative order” from the city traffic engineer. Staff must collect data about the use of parking spaces in the area before removal, and discuss the removal with neighbors. This work is underway.
Over the past few years, Eugene has removed on-street parking to improve bicycle facilities on several streets, including portions of 24th, 18th and Fifth avenues.
The stretch of Lincoln from Fifth to 13th avenues is scheduled to be repaved in summer 2016 as part of Eugene’s five-year Pavement Bond Measure. Repaving projects often present opportunities to add bike lanes or other improvements at very little additional cost, since the street will be re-striped anyway.
Long-term city transportation plans envision a two-way separated “cycletrack” on Lincoln from Fifth to 13th.
The worst place in Eugene for having a bike stolen over the past two years? South Eugene High School tops the list with 34 reported thefts in 2014-2015.
Eugene Public Library came in at No. 2 with 24 reported thefts, and the new Capstone apartment complex was third with 17. Here’s a map showing the 10 spots in town with the most reported bike thefts from Jan. 1, 2014 through Dec. 31, 2015. (Click on the numbers to see details).
The rest of the top 10 (from a theft report provided the Eugene Police Commission):
- Stadium Park Apartments, 90 Commons Drive (16 reported thefts)
- 5th Street Public Market, 296 E. Fifth Ave. (15)
- Ducks Village, 3224 Kinsrow Ave. (14)
- YMCA, 2055 Patterson St. (14)
- Wal-mart, 4550 W. 11th Ave. (10)
- Parkside Apartments, 4075 Aerial Way (10)
- Spencer View Apartments, 2250 Patterson St. (10)
Via City of Eugene Public Works:
Popular bicycle routes in Eugene are about to get a face lift, or rather, some makeup. Shared Lane Markings (SLMs), sometimes called “sharrows”, are currently being installed (many have actually been installed already) under a contract for walking and bicycling improvements throughout the city. SLMs direct people on bikes to ride in the proper direction on a street and raise the awareness of people in cars of the potential presence of bicycle traffic. When people riding bikes travel directly over the shared lane marking they are in the best position to be seen by other road users and will be positioned outside of the “door zone”, where an opening car door can injure a bicycle rider.
Streets where new shared lane markings will be added include Willamette Street, Alder Street, 12th Avenue, 15th Avenue, Olive Street, and Broadway. Streets with SLMs are not bicycle-only streets. These streets need to be shared by all people using the travel lanes. Good advice for traveling on a street with shared lane markings, is to slow down, behave predictably, and act as if other road users are a family member or someone you know, not an obstacle that is “in the way”. Safety is everyone’s responsibility.
A short public service announcement was developed in 2014 to communicate where a person riding a bicycle should position themselves within the travel lane. It communicates that all users, including people who drive and ride bikes, should travel directly over the shared lane marking. The 30-second spot is based on the popular video game “Mario Kart”. Though it should be noted that riding a bicycle over a shared lane marking will not provide a “power up” boost, it will make you more visible and keep you out of the door zone. The video is linked on the city’s traffic safety webpage: www.eugene-or.gov/trafficsafety.
Lot’s of great bike happenings in the coming weeks. Join the fun!
Walk+Bike to School Day
Join the National Walk+Bike to School Day on Wednesday, Oct. 7th. Whether you join one of the local schools participating or simply walk or bike to school, work, or running errands you’ll be part of the fun!
When: October 7th
Where: Schools all around Eugene-Springfield
World’s Shortest Bike Race
Come compete in the second annual World’s Shortest Bike Race. No training necessary (except drinking some beer)- the only thing you need is a bike- and even if that is too much work- you can just use ours. First 100 to register- receive a FREE T-Shirt. Just email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with your names to register. Prizes for the fastest and slowest. Kid’s Race too! 13.9 feet of hell.
When: Sunday, Oct. 11th 3pm
Where: Falling Sky Brewing
UO Transportation Day
Come out and screen print a cool bike shirt on the spot, register your bike, get help with route planning (bus and bike), practice putting your bike on a bus rack, learn about transportation services on campus, interact with local bicycle businesses, and much more.
FREE! Food, music, t-shirts, reflective stickers, bike repairs, and swag.
PRIZES! Enter to win a waterproof jacket and pants from Showers Pass, bike lights from Planet Bike, coffee mug and water bottle holders fromPortland Design Works, and more.
When: October 13, 10:00am – 3:00pm
Where: Chapman Hall on 13th Ave. (across from Lillis)
Roaster’s Ramble Bike Ride
We will explore Eugene’s finest downtown coffee roasters, by bike! Grab your bike and bring your friends to discover your soon-to-be new favorite place to get your coffee buzz on.
Sign up online at outdoorprogram.uoregon.edu/events for free! Must be a UO student or OP co-op member to participate.
When: October 14, 3:00pm
Where: UO Outdoor Program Barn (1225 E. 18th Ave.)
Cost: FREE (for UO Students or OP co-op member)
Willie Weir: Three Styles of Bike Travel
Instead of escaping urban congestion and heading to the country, what if your bike tour never left the city? Willie Weir has explored three different styles of bike travel in Portland, Minneapolis and Montreal. Come listen to his stories and be inspired to plan trips you’ve never before imagined.
When: October 15, Doors at 6 pm, show at 7
Where: Pacific Hall Room 123 (UO Campus)
Cost: $5 general, $3 UO students and OP co-op members
Bike School: A Gateway to the World of Bike Mechanics
Interested in knowing how to maintain and repair your bike? Well, you’re in luck because Bike School is back! Learn the joy of fixing your own bicycle with professional mechanics Al Hongo and Nick Wogan.
During our three week course, you will learn to maintain and repair your standard road, mountain, or commuter bike. You must bring your own bike.
Pre-register at the UO Bike Program inside the UO Outdoor Program Barn (1225 E 18th Ave) or call 541-346-4371. Must be a UO student or OP co-op member to participate.
When: Wednesdays, 6- 8 pm, October 14th- November 18th
Where: UO Outdoor Program Barn (1225 E. 18th Ave.)
Cost: $65 for the class
Eugene Disaster Relief Trials
The Disaster Relief Trials (DRT) is a cargo bike event designed to help demonstrate the capabilities of bikes in disaster situations. The riders will plan and navigate a course of their choosing through the city, to designated check points, in order to fulfill the criteria of the trials, with fully loaded bikes on city roads. At each check point riders will encounter obstacles or complete tasks to assist response teams (like a neighborhood Community Emergency Response Team – CERT group). While the riders are completing the course, a Resiliency Fair will be held at Alton Baker Park (the start/finish line) as well as a “Fiets of Parenthood” short course for family cargo bikers and younger riders.
The DRT is a fundraiser for Eugene-Springfield’s Safe Routes to School Bicycle Education Program.
The Disaster Resiliency Fair will be a great place to show off emergency preparedness supplies, bikes, resiliancy gear and information to people interested in living a sustainable and prepared lifestyle. DRT riders will come back to the Fair several times during the day, so it will be a fun place to watch the action and get you and your family prepared! The Fair will be from 11:00am – 6:00pm and includes an Oakshire beer garden.
The DRT will start and finish at Alton Baker Park on Saturday October 17th with staggered start times beginning at 10:00 am!
The Resiliency Fair will be at the Alton Baker Park site from 11:00am to 6:00 pm and will include music, vendors, community booths, family activities, competition excitement and more! Awards ceremony for the DRT will be held at 5:00 pm at Alton Baker.
We need volunteers to make the event a success; consider registering to volunteer for a couple hours at the event. You’ll be doing your part to help out…and get a cool DRT shirt out of it!
Sales from the DRT Raffle Tickets go right to Safe Routes to School to support our Bike Safety Education Program AND you could win a Bike Friday Haul-a-Day Cargo Bike or lot’s of other great bike and preparadeness gear! Sales of other items (and registration fees) support the event and any profits go to SRTS and the Oregon Chapter of the Red Cross.
When: October 17th 11am-5pm
Where: Alton Baker Park (Picnic Shelter area)
Cost: FREE (or register as a racer for a small entry fee)
Information via Jan Spencer:
Would you like to see a greener, more healthy and resilient Eugene? You can help.
The 2015 Northwest Permaculture Convergence is looking for eight or so bike enthusiasts to help escort several bike tours that will be visiting “green” sites in Eugene. The tours will be Friday, August 28. They will leave and return to the River Road Recreation Center, 1400 Lake Drive in the River Road Neighborhood. Each site will have its own person speaking.
The tours are part of the Convergence, which will take place August 28 to 30 at the River Road Recreation Center and will include presentations, plenary sessions, a free outdoor Expo on Saturday and the Friday site tours. The entire event is about downsizing our eco foot print and upsizing civic culture and planet friendly lifestyles. The Convergence theme is “Greening Our Neighborhoods With Permaculture.”
We have five site tours planned and we would like to find eight or so experienced bike riders – at least two for each tour – to escort the riders so they are safe and no one is lost, perhaps help fix the odd flat. The tours range in length from 7 miles to 15 miles. Stagin will be at the Rec Center at 9 AM. Four tours will finish in the early afternoon. The tours will also include car pooling. Tour escorts are not responsible for car pooling. Carpools will have maps.
Two tours will visit properties with edible landscaping, solar design, rain water catchment, reclaiming automobile space, natural building, cooperation between neighbors and more.
Other tours will visit green business, sites with aspects of Block Planning, shared residential living, habitat restoration and citizen initiative on public property. See actual tour destinations below.
You will see some great sites in Eugene that help point the way to a more green and resilient Eugene. You will help people learn about reducing their eco footprint. The tours are free. How many people? We don’t know. Could be ten people, could be forty + for each tour.
Secure bike parking.
We also plan secure bike parking within a chain link fence at the Rec Center where people will check their bikes and come back for them when they are ready to leave. We invite help managing the bike parking. Starting at 5 PM Friday and ending at 5 PM Sunday. We can offer dinner and plenary session Friday for help with the tour and setting up the bike parking.
If you are interested to help, please contact Jan at email@example.com Thanks!.
You can learn more about the Convergence at www.northwestpermaculture.org The Convergence will be a unique opportunity for greening Eugene. Part of it is free, part requires registration. Please tell your friends about the Convergence. Thanks!
Tour 1 and 2 [Morning and Afternoon] – River Road Neighborhood – ten sites – 7 hours. Three miles. One tour leads into the other.
Tour 2 – Green Businesses – CAT, Back Yard Farmer, Green Store, Growers Market Co-op, Hummingbird Wholesale. 4 hours. Seven miles.
Tour 3 – East Blair Housing Co-op, Maitreya Eco Village, Common Ground Garden and a private home in Friendly Neighborhood. 5 hours. Ten miles
Tour 4 – Private homes – shared residential, cooperative living. 5 hours. Fifteen miles.
A walkable city is also a great city to bike in! Join the author, lecturer, and TED Talk speaker, Jeff Speck for an interesting (and free) public lecture next Wednesday!
Hult Center Studio, 7th Avenue, Eugene, Oregon
Wednesday, June 17, 2015
5:30pm happy hour/ Hors d’oeuvres
Please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org
Jeff Speck is a city planner and urban designer who advocates internationally for more walkable cities. As Director of Design at the National Endowment for the Arts from 2003 through 2007, he presided over the Mayors’ Institute on City Design and created the Governors’ Institute on Community Design. Prior to his federal appointment, Mr. Speck spent ten years as Director of Town Planning at DPZ & Co., the principal firm behind the New Urbanism movement. Since 2007, he has led Speck & Associates, a boutique planning firm that specializes in making American downtowns thrive.
Mr. Speck is a contributing editor to Metropolis magazine and serves on the Sustainability Task Force of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. With Andres Duany and Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk, he is the co-author of several books including Suburban Nation, which the Wall Street Journal calls “the urbanist’s bible.” His latest book, Walkable City–which the Christian Science Monitor calls “timely and important, a delightful, insightful, irreverent work” –was the best-selling planning/design book of 2013.
Jeff Speck, AICP, CNU-A, LEED-AP, Honorary ASLA
Principal, Speck & Associates LLC