The Monday Roundup: Hinault’s gauntlet, anti-transit extremism, sundress-gate, and more



Welcome to the week. Today’s Monday Roundup is made possible by the Portland Century, offering three route options on August 19th.

Here are the best stories we came across in the past seven days…

Ball sports are over: If you’re too afraid to let your kid bike in the neighborhood, get them into racing! There’s more to life than the traditional ball sports, as the Bike Snob explains in his most recent column.

Any excuse necessary: It’s amazing what people will do to justify their anti-bike bias; including protesting a protected bike lane on safety grounds while marching in said bike lane in order to not get hit by other road users. (h/t @BrooklynSpoke)

Anti-transit extremists: As if non-car mobility needs any more hurdles in America, the billionaire Koch Brothers are hellbent on destroying it.

Auto touchscreens are bad, very bad: Even a self-described “Tesla fanboy” admits that the huge “infotainment” screens in cars are very unsafe because — shock! — they distract people from the important task of paying attention to the road.

Phones too: FiveThirtyEight reveals the hidden dangers of having phones in cars — even when they’re not actively being used.

Trump’s tariffs: The man in charge of our country has slapped tariffs on Chinese-made bearings, materials, GPS devices and electric motors.

Dockless wisdom: Seattle’s DOT has shared a trove of data about their robust dockless bike share pilot program and Curbed has a solid breakdown.

Portland needs to try this: L.A.P.D. is using e-bikes for patrol. It makes so much sense. Portland talks about community policing, we are a biking city, we finally got rid of mounted horses… Time to bring back police bike patrol units!

A new day at TriMet: The transit agency’s new leader comes out in an Oregonian interview as a champion of bus-only lanes, fewer light rail stops downtown, a new transit tunnel, and more good things. Sure as heck beats his freeway expansion lobbyist predecessor.

Sundress-gate: A councilor in the Canadian city of Hamilton spurred quite the backlash after wondering aloud whether women’s love of sundresses prevented them from riding more.

Turns out walking isn’t the problem: Despite the propaganda from governments and other “safety” agencies, new research shows what many of us have known all-along: That “distracted pedestrians” aren’t really a thing to worry about.

Coal-rolling victory: A judge in the case against Diesel Brothers has ordered them to stop selling illegal exhaust kits that allow people to spew toxic exhaust at will. (We covered that case back in 2016.)

Congestionomics: What if free-flowing freeway traffic was a sign of economic depression instead of success? New research from Denver makes the case that there’s a strong correlation between congested cities and booming business environments.

Lime’s scooter pitch: High usage rates and solid profits are among the ways Lime is selling investors on their dockless electric scooters. Worth noting that Lime is likely to win a permit to operate in Portland very soon.

Hinault’s gauntlet: Frustrated by continued allegations of doping in the sport he once dominated, a legendary Frenchman says riders should boycott the Tour de France if Chris Froome — who’s under investigation for drug use — participates.

Dispatch from L.A.: Amid a sharp rise in deaths and with a city government not doing enough to keep them safe (despite a Vision Zero pledge), a new guard of bike activists is rising up in the car culture epicenter of Los Angeles.

Speed camera debacle: Advocates in New York are reeling after their state government failed to renew a speed camera program that had placed 140 of the safety devices in schools throughout the state.

— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and jonathan@bikeportland.org

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Portland Century August 19th