Portland’s Safe Streets: How Do They Do It?

Last Sunday in New York, the Street Memorial Project
organized a ride in memory of the 14 bicyclists and more than 100
pedestrians killed by cars in the city in 2008. You can see the
StreetFilm about the ride here.

215449694_c53892daf9_m.jpgPBOT traffic safety expert
Greg Raisman. Photo © J. Maus.

In
Portland, OR, they marked a much happier milestone this New Year’s.
That’s because 2008 was a year in which no cyclists died on that city’s
streets. Streetsblog Network member Bike Portland talked with the Portland DOT’s "chief traffic safety guru," Greg Raisman, to get some insight into why and how it happened.

In an interview with Bike Portland’s Jonathan Maus, Raisman makes the
point that safe streets are by no means just good for bikers and
pedestrians:

All traffic fatalities are a symptom
of the same disease. It’s equally sad and tragic if a person is killed
while walking, biking, or driving. It also appears that the conditions
that make it safer for the most
vulnerable make it safer for everyone. As roads become safe enough that
a child can safety walk or bike to their friend’s house, the roads also
become safer for driving to that friend’s house when you have to.

His attitude is inspirational.

Elsewhere on the network, Car Less Ohio reports on Columbus’s efforts to become the "best bicycling city in the country," Greater Greater Washington posts on how urban bike trails aren’t just for recreation, and The Transport Politic updates the banks/transit financial mess.

  • Meanwhile, in Los Angeles, nobody knows how many people die or are injured on the roads because nobody measures tracks and comprehensively records how many people have died or been injured on the roads.

    The campaign for less fatal streets could be a political career booster, but I guess the car culture is too strong in L.A. Why don’t we track injuries and deaths comprehensively in L.A.?

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

STREETSBLOG USA

Touring Portland’s Brand New Car-Free Bridge

|
Okay, it seems like now Portland is just showing off. The city is putting the finishing touches on the Tilikum Bridge, a multi-modal span that will serve buses, cyclists, pedestrians and trains — but no cars. This bridge has it all: a safe walking and biking path, transitways free of traffic congestion, sleek design, bike counters, a […]

All Eyes on Portland at Bike Summit

|
An organized ride on one of Portland’s bike boulevards. If there was a star at yesterday’s National Bike Summit, it was Portland, Oregon. After Earl Blumenauer, one of the city’s congressional reps and a former county commissioner, delivered the morning address, Portland’s bike planners and advocates shared their strategies at some of the more urban-focused […]