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Portland: More bikeways = less paved roads

February 19, 2010

For Portland, more bikeways mean fewer paved roads
By Dr. Eric Fuits,
EconInternational

The Portland City Council unanimously approved the nation’s most ambitious bike-projects initiative Thursday, with Mayor Sam Adams promising to submit a $20 million “kickstart” funding plan within 30 days.

At the heart of the proposal is nearly 700 miles of new bikeways that would make up a “safer and more comfortable” two-wheeled urban network for new cyclists.

The figure above shows that as Portland had added to its bikeways, the motoring majority has suffered a deterioration of the the City’s roads.

However, Portland is notorious for its road paving backlog. Many streets of the City are entirely unpaved and some streets have potholes so big they could damage a Hummer and almost swallow an Aveo. The City’s current road paving backlog could pave a two-lane road from Portland to San Francisco, California (yes, really).

  
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Bob February 19, 2010

Causality. You are assuming that bike lanes are the cause of the road paving backlog. Instead of the money spent on bike projects you could also make a graph that shows that paving backlogs have grown because the fuel tax in Oregon and at the federal level have not been raised during this time period. Or you could show that money spent on roadway projects is being diverted to transit projects.

Your analysis is simplistic at best and dishonest at worst.

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