Portland Motorists Not Feeling the Love

From Mother Nature Network:

Portland, Oregon is touted as an oasis for cyclists and public-transportation lovers.  The city spends over $3 million annually on bicycle safety improvements and features an extensive network of bike lanes, bike racks, and rails-to-trails features.  Amidst discussion of the newest initiative, a Portland Bureau of Transportation draft of the Portland Bicycle Plan for 2030, some citizens are taking issue with Bike City U.S.A.  According to Oregonian blogger Joseph Rose, some motorists feel the city discriminates against motorists in their efforts to be the greenest city in America.


Setting aside the matter of Portland’s bikeway design issues, $3 million is a tiny fraction of what the city and metro area spends each year on transportation.  No doubt the percentage of trips done by bike is greater than the percentage of dollars spent on bicyclists.

As is the case here, I’m sure gas taxes only cover about two-thirds of the costs of building and operating roads in Portland.  The rest is covered with property and income taxes (Oregon doesn’t have sales tax).

2 replies
  1. Keri
    Keri says:

    Not to excuse the selfish car-heads (they have no idea how much they’re subsidized!), but perhaps if Portland’s bike plan was more based on integration and cooperation there would be less power for backlash. They do make a lot of noise and production about reducing traffic lanes and taking away space from motorists to give it to cyclists. I’m sure that increases the perception that the tiny fraction being spent is much greater than it actually is.

  2. Wayne Pein
    Wayne Pein says:

    Instead of sequestering bicycle users in DZBLs and pretty green and blue painted areas, they COULD unleash the beast and let bicyclists be free. Encourage them to use a full real lane. But can you imagine the whining from motorists from that paradigm shift! Couldn’t happen; too much bike lane heroin for any withdrawal.

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