When social distancing on busy trails in Bend became challenging, community leaders had an idea. Based on several successful “Open Streets” events, and subsequent physical changes to some neighborhood streets, Bend launched their “Stay Healthy Streets” program in April. It’s a simple approach that takes advantage of easy-to-implement traffic calming measures on six miles of streets in different parts of this Central Oregon town, opening up space for people with fewer cars. Read more about the program and Commute Options’ Executive Director’s role in this healthy active use of our public right of way. So intriguing, that the Bike Portland Blog posted an article about it.
Brian Potwin is the executive director of Bend-based Commute Options, a nonprofit that does education and encouragement around active transportation. “We saw the opportunity and Oakland is the example that really popped out in our eyes,” he told me in an interview today. Potwin spearheaded Bend’s Open Streets events (like Portland Sunday Parkways), so when he emailed his City Manager and Mayor about doing something similar, they understood right away. Potwin said Stay Healthy Streets took about two weeks from initial conversations to cones on the ground. “We’re extremely happy with how swiftly the city has responded to this.”
Read the whole story at Bike Portland.