The Monday Roundup: Roadside ethics test, glowing bike & more

The Monday Roundup: Roadside ethics test, glowing bike & more

Police in Belarus created this scene to test drivers.
(Photo by

This week’s Monday Roundup is sponsored by Urban Office Renewal, owners of a historic, newly-renovated, bike-friendly office building at SW 9th and Oak.

Here are the bike links from around the world that caught our eyes this week:

Driving test: A team of Belarus police mocked up the scene at right to see how people driving past would react. Nine of 186 passers-by stopped.

Super-reflective bike: “The Lumen is the latest bike from the artisanal builders at San Francisco‚Äôs Mission Bicycle Company. The entire bike — frame, fork, and rims — has been sprayed with a retro-reflective coating.”

Speed cameras and behavior: In Chicago, automated speed cameras have cut speeding by 90 percent. They’re so effective that the city is making almost no money from them.

Speed cameras and privacy: “When it comes to dangerous driving … privacy interests are minimal and safety concerns considerable,” the celebrated civil rights lawyer Alan Dershowitz concludes in a reasoned endorsement of red-light and speed cameras.

Youth driving: The New Republic looks at the decline in youth driving and makes the point that”>outside New York City, most zero-car households are poor
, but misses an important fact: the driving decline is driven more by a rise in low-car life (owning cars but only driving sometimes) than by a rise in no-car life. Meanwhile, Portland’s own Community Cycling Center looks closer at demographics of zero-car households.

Rethinking LOS: Latest awesome tidbit from the Brown administration in California: it’s admitting that preserving the speed of cars, aka “level of service,” is a ridiculous way to measure the “environmental impact” of a project. (PDF)

Citi Bike cash crunch: Citi Bike is operating in the red despite huge popularity among New Yorkers because not enough tourists have been buying daypasses (in part because fritzy software doesn’t always let them) and because software glitches are driving up operating costs such as battery recharging and bike rebalancing. Gizomodo, however, says everything’s going to be fine. Citi Bike’s Portland-based parent company, meanwhile, seems to finally be looking for outside capital investors after years of running its operation on a relative shoestring.

Hidden car costs: The AAA’s much-cited estimates of the cost of driving don’t include parking fees, speeding tickets or car washes, MarketWatch points out.

Pothole lawsuit: A British man is the latest to sue his local government for not fixing a pothole that contributed to a bike crash.

Guerilla safety: A traffic sign retail company has been donating official-looking “20 is plenty” speed limit signs to Brooklyn street-safety activists. The company’s content director calls their do-it-yourself signage campaign “ballsy” and “necessary.”

Pedal deliveries: Nimble and congestion-proof, cargo trikes are frequently faster than cargo trucks, in Sweden as in Portland.

Helmet cam works: A Glasgow man is banned from driving for 48 weeks after he used his uninsured car to buzz and then brake-check a man biking with a helmet camera. “Without the footage the case would never have been brought to court,” the victim said.

Your video of the week might be your best chance ever to experiment with YouTube’s “speed” setting (click the gear). Check out what happens to a biker and a passing mattress truck at 0:21:

If you come across a noteworthy bicycle story, send it in via email, Tweet @bikeportland, or whatever else and we’ll consider adding it to next Monday’s roundup.

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