April 23, 2012

Madison Bike Life Visits West Coast Cousin

This week Madison Bike Life will be rolling out daily dispatches from our trip to Portland, Oregon.

A Portlander on the Eastbank Esplanade

Portland is the cool West Coast cousin that Madison bike enthusiasts, planners, and politicians go to visit and come back gushing about concepts that Portland has already implemented like a grid of bike boulevards, light rail, and an urban growth boundary. Although the Netherlands models a near cycling utopia, Portland's example demonstrates what is clearly feasible in the American context. Will Madison grow up to be more like Portland?



We made Portland a vacation destination and it didn't disappoint. We certainly enjoyed getting around town with WorkCycles Dutch bikes rented from Clever Cycles. The city's bikeway network was easy to navigate with infrastructure and signage that didn't leave you guessing where to turn next.

Photo Break Along the Springwater Corridor Trail

The people were as welcoming as the infrastructure. Many other cyclists we encountered gave an acknowledging smile in passing, as if a wink to an it-feels-awesome-to-be-biking comradery. Portland's drivers were yielding and pleasantly patient, even with a sometimes hesitating and unsure bicycle tourist.

Portlander on a Bike Boulevard

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