A petition from "over 250+ professionals with over 2,900 years of driving experience from across the board at TriMet" landed in my inbox today, to protest TriMet's upcoming plan to add a bike lane through the Rose Quarter Transit Center.
The way biking in the Rose Quarter works now, bikes crisscross the intersection at Oregon and Interstate, then cross under the freeway and loop around to catch NE Wheeler. That's the blue line, below.
The re-configured transit center will let bikes travel straight through, following the red path. Lots of cyclists do this now, illegally. TriMet plans to move some of the buses' stops to NE Multnomah to clear out some of the traffic in the center of the transit area, to make the space safer for all. I've heard the bike lane will be added in September.
But the bus drivers on this petition are opposed to the plan. "The Following document is a cry for help from the Drivers of Tri-met to the people and media of Portland. With your help we can prevent the fatal results that will no doubt occur if we remain silent, and current plans go forward. No professional driver ever willingly puts their self or others at risk, but that is exactly what we are being asked to do if bicycles are allowed traverse where multiple 20-ton busses and 3 MAX lines are maneuvering. With your help, we hope this lethal tragedy can be averted. We cannot let the city of council of Portland squeeze a bike lane through the Rose Quarter Transit Center." (Sic throughout.)
The entire bus drivers' letter is after the cut.
Click on these to open them in a new window, where they'll be bigger.