Sure, some Portland, Ore. residents aren’t exactly rolling out the welcome mats
for an influx of potentially neighborhood-altering micro-apartment developments being erected across town by a Seattle developer. However, there is one related thing that nearly every Portlander with real estate on the brain can agree on and it is this: bike parking rules.
Widely heralded as one of the most bicycle-friendly
cities in the world, Portland is a great place to live if you prefer to don a helmet and propel yourself to the office each morning (a staggering 5.44 percent of Portlanders
commute by bike) via a dedicated bike lane and/or off-street biking path (the city boasts hundreds
of miles of bicycle infrastructure). Or maybe you’re more of a pleasure cyclist — someone who enjoys leisurely weekend jaunts; someone who would never pass up the chance to spray yourself head to toe in Day-Glo body paint, hop on your fixie, and embark on a mass ride with a few hundred like-minded, similarly nude
Furthermore, in a spandex- and tattoo-heavy town with an extremely visible bike culture, the cycle-centricity of newly developed apartment complexes — including those with units of extremely limited square footage — isn’t just a rather pleasant amenity … it’s to be expected.
Such developments promote their bike-friendliness loudly and proudly. With secured bike storage, dedicate bike lift, and easy access to the city’s bike paths, Northeast Portland’s Milano Apartments
bills itself as “Portland’s Premier Bicycle Friendly Apartments.” And then there's the 18-unit, net-zero energy EcoFlats
development on trendy North Williams Avenue where you’ll find sports a bike-centric brewpub, Hopworks Bike Bar, occupying the ground-level retail space. Living in an energy-efficiency one-bedroom apartment situated on a “bike highway” and directly above an eatery that serves organic craft beer and vegan banh mi sandwiches — you really, truly can’t get any more Portland than that.
With there are numerous other Portland developments that cater to cyclists and heavily market their cyclist-friendly features, it would appear that the ultimate in bike-welcoming residences is underway in the Lloyd District. When completed, the massive Hassalo on Eighth
development will feature 657 units spread across three buildings including a 21-story tower. For each of those 657 units there will be one bicycle parking spot in addition to
an underground parking complex beneath an adjacent office building that can accommodate another 547 bikes. That’s 1,204 bike parking spots total, or 1.8 parking spots per household.
There will also, naturally, be street-level bike valet service.
After reaching out to bicycling experts from Mexico, Canada, Bike Portland
has come to the conclusion that Hassalo on Eighth will generate more long-term bicycle parking than any other project in the entire country — a hugely impressive feat. And funny enough, project architects from Portland-based GBD Architects worry that there won't be enough
bike parking spots in the “bikescraper” to serve its residents when it opens in 2015.
What an encouraging predicament to be in.
Explains Kyle Anderson of GBD:
The demographic that we expect to show up here is going to be young urban professionals and it's going to be, we think, young families as well. They all have bikes. When I think about my own neighborhood, the families I see riding there, if you move those people into a building they're still going to have a bike. I think you have to be ready for that demographic to be there, otherwise you're restricting yourself.
Apparently, the team at GBD are mulling plans on adding even more.
There will also be 328 parking spots for cars at Hassolo on Eighth, providing just around a half a spot per household.