Saturday, April 3, 2010

Bicycling Magazine Names Salem 19th Best


Bicycling Magazine has named Salem one of America's top 50 bike-friendly cities. The citation, actually, perfectly captures the situation:
19. Salem, OR
In a region that includes Portland, Eugene, Seattle and other cycling hotbeds, Salem is sometimes forgotten—but the city of 152,000 has 60 percent of its arterial roads accommodating cyclists, so it certainly holds its own.
We're indeed behind Corvallis, Eugene, Seattle, and Portland, but by national standards we're ahead of the curve! That's the good news.

Unintentionally ambiguous, but perfectly capturing our ambivalence about Salem's current planning, is the observation about arterials and bike lane striping. Sure, Salem's got lots of arterials striped with bike lanes, and if you are a confident cyclist who doesn't mind lots of traffic around you, the accommodations are adequate. But to make bicycling more popular and appealing outside of the spandex and lycra set, low-traffic bikeways are even more important. By this standard, Salem still has a ways to go.

The recognition, especially for the Union St. Railroad Bridge, is good to see. We look forward to the next steps as we undertake the update of the Bicycle Plan in the Transportation System Plan.

Sunday update: More good press!

Capi Lynn's got a great article on the Boys and Girls Club Flow Riders (photo: KOBBI R. BLAIR | Statesman Journal).

Justin Much writes about the Capitol Cup. At the Salem Daily Photo Diary, Gogouci posted more great shots from the races.

And not about Salem, but interesting anyway, the
Oregonian's music critic, David Stabler, who also bikes, writes about biking the McKenzie Pass before it opens to cars for the season!

2 comments:

Jeff McNamee said...

Sorry to be the cynic but I find this difficult to believe. There are many good initiatives on paper. Few seem to be implemented. Obviously the voting board has never riden downtown. I know Salem is doing well but I think we can do much much better!!

MWVBTA said...

Yes, 19th might be hard to believe - but it's true that Salem is ahead of the curve nationally, really! And it's also true there's much still to be done. Just as you say, we can do better. The Bike update to the Transportation System Plan will be a huge opportunity. We'll let you know about details on that.