Category Archives: Car Free

BPAC meets Friday

The Bicycle & Pedestrian Advisory Commission meets this Friday, October 4 at 7 AM at 500 SW Madison Ave.  The agenda includes:

  • discussion of potential bike/ped improvements to the intersection of HWY 99 & Circle
  • a potential business district designation for downtown
  • crossing options for Kings & Garfield
  • discussion of no-idle zones
  • sharing a bike-friendly map draft

If you have interest in any of these or topics you would like to bring to our attention, please come to the meeting or contact Greg Wilson ahead of time.

Think twice about electric cars

cigarettes-and-carsOf course, you would expect me, writing at Car-Free Corvallis, to not be a fan of any motor vehicle technology.  Only part of my reasons for being car-free are environmental.  But even if I focus just on that aspect, I would still never advocate for electric cars.  My arguments have been based on life-cycle energy requirements (the energy to produce a car is about the same as is used by the car) and resource requirements (e.g. rare-earth metals, aluminium).  I was very happy to see that IEEE Spectrum Magazine, the magazine read by every professional and academic engineer that I know, ran a cover article titled “Unclean at Any Speed” by Ozzie Zehner and summarizes this and other reasons that electric cars should not be embraced by environmentalists as the solution to our transportation problems and suggests lower-tech solutions (biking, walking and mass transit).  Summarized beautifully at the end:

Upon closer consideration, moving from petroleum-fueled vehicles to electric cars begins to look more and more like shifting from one brand of cigarettes to another. We wouldn’t expect doctors to endorse such a thing. Should environmentally minded people really revere electric cars? Perhaps we should look beyond the shiny gadgets now being offered and revisit some less sexy but potent options—smog reduction, bike lanes, energy taxes, and land-use changes to start. Let’s not be seduced by high-tech illusions.

I highly recommend everyone read this article, whether you are pro- or anti- (or neutral) electric cars.

Calling all Corvallis Bike Based Businesses!

[from Kim Thackray, Manager, SoupCycle Corvallis]
As a part of Car Free Day festivities (on September 22), SoupCycle would like to gather everyone in Corvallis that uses a bike as an integral part of their work.  No specific plans yet on what we will do, but it might include

  • parading together to the event in downtown Corvallis
  • signs or handouts celebrating our special type of business
  • demos, etc; SoupCycle will have a booth where we are giving out SoupSamples

If you fit this description, or know someone that does, please contact Kim at kim@soupcycle.com.  If we get enough interest, we’ll set up a Facebook event page to do some planning.

A river trip without a car

Lisa and I, Don Boucher, are a car-free couple. This Saturday we took a trip from Corvallis to Albany on our compact, lightweight rafts. The rafts easily fit into a backpack and the paddles collapse. We float to Albany and take the Linn-Benton Loop bus home.
See here for our nature sightings (with photos).

Last year we took 5 days to float from Corvallis to Salem and took the train home. It was one of the best vacations we ever had!

Thanks and another bike ride (Belfountain Road)

Thanks very much for the great bicycle turnout at the 4th of July parade – I love this city!!

This is an invitation for a Belfountain Road ride. Please help us pick a date that works for the most people by filling in this scheduling Doodle.

We’re planning to do a “practice” ride on Belfountain Road between now and the 26th. The ride is in preparation for a number of us who will be bicycling to a 350.org Summer Heat event in Portland on July 26th (we will be ride to Wilsonville on the 26th and then take the WES light rail to Portland).

This Belfountain Road route will be a fun ride – we’d like you to ride with us whether or not you will be joining us on July 26th for the ride to Portland.

Also, feel free to suggest an alternate route to the current Belfountain Road route.  To follow up, contact Leonard Higgens.