6 PM NE TWORK JULY 2015 WW W. PMI. ORG
Cyclists are taking to city streets, and the cities are responding.
In Copenhagen, Denmark, a global leader of cycling infrastructure, half
of residents commute to work by bike. At just 6.1 percent, the city of Portland, Oregon has the highest cycle commuting rate in the United States.
While this number is small in comparison, the country’s bicycle culture
is blooming. The number of bike commuters jumped roughly 60 percent
between 2000 and 2012, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
The growing popularity of two-wheelers, fueled partly by city-backed
bike-sharing programs, has inspired a spate of bicycle-friendly initiatives on
both sides of the Atlantic. But from passionate stakeholders to regulatory red
tape, bike-focused projects in any location face similar bumps in the road.
Line of Sight
The team in charge of Portland’s US$134.6 million Tilikum Crossing
bridge, for instance, worried that the car-free structure’s design would not
be approved by the local government. As part of a US$1.49 billion light-rail
program, the 1,720-foot (524-meter) bridge will carry only light-rail trains,
buses, streetcars, pedestrians and cyclists. When it opens in September
2015, Tilikum Crossing
will be the largest car-free transit bridge in the
From the start, the
generated a great deal
of interest from permit-granting agencies and
potential users. “As the
first new bridge in our
downtown core in 40
years, it had a lot of public interest,” says Robert Barnard, project director,
Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Transit Project, Portland.
The project team determined it had to mitigate the risk that its design
would not be approved. It commissioned a bridge-design study and
formed a stakeholder group headed by a former Portland mayor. This
group gathered public consensus on the design before engineers starting
working on it.
million Tilikum Crossing
bridge will carry only light-rail trains, buses, streetcars,
pedestrians and cyclists.
Tilikum Crossing bridge
under construction in
Portland, Oregon, USA
PHO TO COUR TESY OF POR TLAND’S TRIMET