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Portland State named “platinum level” bike university; one of only five in United States
Author: John Kirkland
Posted: November 4, 2015

The League of American Bicyclists has named Portland State University (PSU) a “Platinum Level Bicycle Friendly University.” PSU is the only university in Oregon and one of only five in the United States with this designation.

The other four platinum winners are Stanford; University of California, Davis; Colorado State University and University of Minnesota, Twin Cities.

The league noted that PSU’s support for bicycling has helped reduce congestion, improve air quality and lower the demand for parking on campus. “Portland State encourages bicycling as an affordable, efficient option for transportation and provides amenities such as indoor bicycle parking, low-cost bicycle rentals, and an on-campus Bike Hub, where students can find everything they need to make bicycling a part of their commute options,” the league stated.

PSU previously was a gold-level bike-friendly university. In the past two years it expanded its “Vik Bike” bicycle rental program from 12 bicycles to 134. Each bike comes with lights, a lock and a helmet. The program, in which students can rent a bike for a term, receive training on bike commuting and bike maintenance, has a waiting list of participants.

During the same two-year period, PSU increased its protected bike parking spaces to 300 – up 20 percent during the period – and has plans to create 100 more in the coming year. The university has about 2,200 indoor and outdoor bike parking spaces on campus, a six-fold increase over the last decade, according to Ian Stude, PSU’s director of parking services. Meanwhile, the growth of car parking spaces on campus has remained relatively flat, Stude added.

Fifteen percent of employees and 10 percent of students regularly bike to campus according to Clint Culpepper, PSU’s bicycle program coordinator. Most never bring a car to campus:  About 80 percent of PSU students and employees commute by taking mass transit, bicycling or walking, Culpepper said.