EVERY YEAR, the Mercury carves out one issue to reiterate just how special Portland's bicycle culture is. Usually, like this year, it's at the outset of the city's most raucous celebration of all things bike, the brash and ridiculous Pedalpalooza. Our Bike Issue aims to show you how lucky we are as cyclists to live in this place, and offers tips and tidbits to help you enjoy your city to its full cycle-centric extent.
That's all valid, but there's another side to this coin. It's not something you'd necessarily notice while cruising a freshly painted bike lane or stopping at one of the bike shops that seem to pop up weekly, but there's a serious conversation happening in this city, and a whole host of conversations that need to happen.
See, by virtue of the bicycling success that leads us to celebrate each June, Portland seems to have lost some of the urgency to keep improving. There's a growing worry that the city's stagnated, even as other major cities—inspired by our progress—take bold new steps every day.
We think that's a shame. So this year, we've done something slightly different with our Bike Issue. There are still tips—a Portland attorney's advice for what to do if you're hit by a car, and our list of recommended Pedalpalooza rides. And there are tidbits, like a rumination on the benefits of dating by bike, and a look at badass bike park the Lumberyard.
But we've also gotten serious, with a lengthy examination of whether Portland's truly stalled out, and what we can to do to regain our momentum. The answer involves you—not just riding and enjoying our city, but actively clamoring for it to be better.
Think of it as a bit of homework—so for next year's Bike Issue, we can get back to celebrating.
In This Year's Bike Issue