Chris, there's one type of public transit that does pay for itself... Bike sharing. In DC, after just 1.5 years in operation, the system covers 100% of its operating costs through user fees.
your input is appreciated, but it sounds like you don't fully understand how advanced the "bike advocates" are in this case. you should be aware that NWTA is an extremely professional and experienced group. They are also joined and supported by national leaders from the International Mountain Bicycle Association and others. NWTA also has official working relationships with the Forest Park Conservancy, Oregon State Parks, and other agencies. just sayin. They understand exactly what's going on.
rachel maddow. omg!
if you're interesting to know more.. i did a story on this project back in March http://bikeportland.org/2010/03/12/bikesta…
well, it turns out that the path through Waterfront Park was not funded with federal transportation grant dollars and therefore it is not technically a transportation corridor and it is subject to closure.
overturning this exclusion won't be as easy as i first thought.
And has anyone asked the most important question.... What would the McMenamin's brothers do?
Re: rise of biking and demise of bike culture.... What this European delegation is not quite aware of is that the bike culture here in Portland is waaay beyond just Zoobomb, "anti-car" activism (I haven't even seen of that lately), and jousting.
We have a mature (and growing) bike industry (manufacturers, frame builders, component makers, etc...), people making art and handmade crafts, a bike business coalition, a strategic brand and national reputation for biking (which is very valuable for a city to have), and much more.
Those things will not go anywhere no matter how mainstream biking gets.
Also, it's a sign of someone who doesn't fully understand Portland bike culture if they think that jousting and Zoobombing is all about being "anti-car" or that it exists only because of people identifying strongly with being a biker. They are social networks built around community and friendship and having fun. They are like Portland's version of book clubs or the Lions Club or something.
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