The Street Trust partners with a wide range of organizations from non-profit, labor, business, health, education, faith, and other sectors. These partnerships make our advocacy more powerful by bridging communities across focus issues and neighborhoods. We work with everyone to achieve our vision, from co-founding the Getting There Together and Just Crossing Alliance coalitions, to forming a statewide alliance to increase funding for safe routes via SB 395, and joining up with regional and statewide partners to pass HB2017- our state’s last major transportation infrastructure package.

 

When we created our first partnerships manager position last year,  we knew that we would need to recruit a born networker ready to connect with a wide range of people leading in every aspect of urban policy and transportation conversations from across zip codes, sectors, and organizations. 

 

Enter Strategic Partnerships Manager Anouksha Gardner, who comes to The Street Trust with years of experience building relationships within the higher education sector. In her previous role at Portland State University, Anouksha was responsible for collaborating and building partnerships with schools, colleges, organizations across the West Coast as well as in South Asia and South East Asia. Now Anouksha is focused on building The Street Trust’s relationships with businesses and community based organizations- and our new relationship with Rosewood Initiative is one that Anouksha and the rest of The Street Trust is especially excited about. 

 

Rosewood Initiative believes in building a safe, healthy and vibrant community where neighbors can thrive together. They are an organization that implements neighbor-led strategies since 2009 and their community center provides space for people to gather, connect to resources, celebrate and work on projects that improve their lives and the community.

 

To keep our followers informed about The Street Trust’s efforts to build partnerships that help us advance our mission of creating a more accessible, equitable, safe, and sustainable regional transportation system, we asked Anouksha how this partnership came about and what to expect from it in the future.

 

What inspired you to reach out to Rosewood Initiative?

Anouksha: When I started working at The Street Trust, I was looking to connect with organizations we had done work with and those we hadn’t connected with yet. Tsering Sherpa, the programs director at Rosewood Initiative connected with me and told me that she worked at a NPO. Tsering was a friend from Portland State and so when we connected and spoke about our organizations I realized that we could work together to support the Rosewood Community, especially with their transportation needs and wants. 

What have you learned most by pursuing this course of action?

I’ve learned that the community is tired of speaking about their needs and no changes happening. The Street Trust is focused on changing that. We are collaborating with Rosewood Initiative to hear about what their community needs and taking steps to provide the resources needed and bring about changes needed.

What are you most grateful to Rosewood for?

I am very grateful for Rosewood’s unwavering support of The Street Trust. We’ve been fortunate enough to be able to table at events and speak to the community. We’ve had their support in signing on to grants we have been applying to. We are also grateful for Rosewood Initiative being our first partner in the Our Streets Community Mobilization Campaign. 

What are you most impressed by with them?

I am very impressed with how much Rosewood does for their community. Every Saturday Celebration I have attended has been supported by the community and everyone I have spoken to there has nothing but good things to say about the organization. 

What are your hopes and aspirations for this partnership in the future?

I hope to continue the relationship we have with Rosewood Initiative and work on doing more with their community. We are going to be hosting listening sessions with their community to find out what their transportation needs are and what The Street Trust can do to provide resources and support. 

I am very thankful for their support and hope to keep up the relationship in the future.

 

Interested in supporting The Street Trust’s partnership with Rosewood Initiative and other community based organizations? Donate or become a member below.

 

Donate To The Street Trust!

Learn More About Rosewood Initiative!

 

On May 31st, in partnership with Washington County and 1000 Friends of Oregon, The Street Trust hosted a half-day study tour of Farmington Road and nearby streets in Washington County. We decided to explore Farmington Road in person after analyzing Metro’s 2020 focus corridors and a conversation with Washington County Commissioner Nafisa Fai, both of which pointed to Farmington as one of the most critical streets in need of improvement in the region.

People walking single files in dangerous roadway
Photo: Sean Carpenter, 1000 Friends of Oregon

We invited diverse participants, including staff from community-based organizations, Commisioner Fai’s office, an Oregon House Representative (and Senate candidate), as well as agency staff from the Oregon Department of Transportation and Washington County’s Planning Division.

The Street Trust believes that by directing the attention of our members and energizing them with ideas for how Farmington Rd. could be improved, this event could lead to infrastructural transformation on the ground. 

 

People walking single file to board bus in dangerous roadway

Why is taking our mission to the streets important?

In the age of COVID-19, many of us have grown accustomed to the luxury of remote work. We’ve seen our morning commute to offices and other locations transform into the simple wiggle of a mouse and adjustments of our cameras. As a result, many of us have become disconnected from the experiences that many members of our communities still live daily – including the requirement to show up to all the places they need to be regardless of whether or not they have access to their own car. It is also often the case that communities that rely on transit, walking, and rolling for mobility have limited capacity to shape in policy discussions without support from organizations like The Street Trust.

We conducted our study tour on foot and by TriMet MAX and bus so all of us could experience together the challenges – and serious danger – that people who don’t drive across our region face when trying to get from place to place throughout their day.  

 

Key Transportation Knowledge: The Urban Road Maintenance District

Washington County has a funding mechanism called the Urban Road Maintenance District (URMD) with which you may not be familiar. The URMD provides preventive road maintenance services for public roads within its boundaries, except roads that are designated as arterials or collectors on the Washington County Transportation Plan. About 430 miles of neighborhood streets have designated URMD maintenance funds.

Improved Roadway in Washingon County
Touring a Washington County street improved with URMD funds

The Urban Road Maintenance District (URMD) was created by the Board of County Commissioners (BCC) and approved by voters in urban unincorporated Washington County in 1987. It is a county service district, formed under ORS Chapter 451. URMD Ordinance No. 4.

 

Voters in the urban unincorporated area approved an ad valorem property tax levy of $0.365 in 1994, which became a permanent rate of $0.2456 upon approval of Ballot Measure 50 in 1997. Property owners in the URMD pay $0.2456 per $1,000 assessed value. The owner of a home with an assessed value of $200,000 pays less than $50 per year for URMD.

 

While originally created for road maintenance, in 2011 URMD funds have since been allocated to improve pedestrian and bicycling safety, some of which we were able to observe during our tour. 

 

Contrasting County vs State Managed Roadways
Top: Farmington Rd as managed by Washington County Below: Managed by ODOT

ODOT Fails Street Users… Again.

There was a noticeable difference between ODOT-managed and Washington County-managed facilities. As we’ve seen across the region the lower emphasis on safety for pedestrians and cyclists leaves many wanting more from ODOT.

In the larger context, we would be remiss if we didn’t highlight for you the immense difference in the safety and accessibility of the right-of-way for people walking, rolling, biking, and accessing transit along Farmington Road. There are major decisions about regional transportation funding currently underway, including the choice to spend billions of dollars expanding highways around our region. These choices come at a great cost to current and future Oregonians – not only in in terms of the debt they’ll be saddled with but in terms of opportunity costs as dangerous roadways like Farmington Road (where people live, work, play, and pray) remain deadly and go unimproved. 

 

Next Steps for Washington County

Washington County’s Major Street Improvement Program (MSTIP) is heading toward a decision point where it will be voted on by county commissioners. Currently there is a request for funding a complete streets project between 173rd and 209th along Farmington. The Street Trust is highly supportive of this project (among others) and highly encourage you to offer feedback once the public comment period for the MSTIP opens up in July. 

Photo: Sean Carpenter, 1000 Friends of Oregon

This was TST’s first policy tour since launching the #OurStreets community mobilization campaign. Our goal is to reach, connect with, and mobilize people from all walks of life and across sectors and spheres of influence for better outcomes. We think it’s a great model and our hope is to do similar tours along other key corridors in our region. But we can’t do it without you!

Want updates about Farmington Road or Washington County? Sign up for our mailing listvolunteer, or donate today.

 

Donate to support future study tours like this!

 

For over a year, young people around Clackamas County have been meeting every month to learn about and provide input on the county’s Climate Action Plan via the Youth Advisory Task Force. The county working to ensure that by 2023, “a Climate Action Plan is adopted for our community with specific recommendations to reach the goal of being carbon neutral by 2050.” (Learn more). The Task Force has engaged stakeholders from around the county in a variety of ways while prioritizing youth engagement- as today’s young people are the frontlines of the climate crisis.

 

Over the past year the Task Force has learned about and engaged on issues relating to climate justice, including equity, energy, consumption, housing, land use, transportation, public health, and resilience. When asked to narrow down which actions would have the most immediate positive impact for youth, the top three were tied to transportation and land use. Those actions are: improving public transit options, encouraging destinations near homes, and improving biking and walking transportation options.

 

Clackamas County now has a Climate Action Plan survey open through the end of June for folks who live in the county to respond to initial ideas on how to achieve carbon neutrality.

 

With transportation contributing to 40% of Oregon’s emissions and a large portion of Clackamas County’s emissions, this survey is a great opportunity to weigh in on what the future of getting around Clackamas County can look like. Creating safe, accessible, equitable, zero carbon streets is good for both people and the planet.

 

Take The Survey!

Responda La Encuesta!

Learn More About The Climate Action Plan

WeBike participants in Beaverton

 

WeBike is The Street Trust’s program to inspire more trans people of all genders, gender non-conforming people, Two Spirit, and women (both trans and cis) to incorporate a bike into their lives and use biking as a way to meet their transportation needs and personal goals. WeBike dismantles the barriers of cycling through rides, knowledge-sharing events, meet and greets, and mentorship.

Last weekend, WeBike’s May ride ventured into new territory: Beaverton! The 10-mile loop started at the Beaverton Farmers Market and utilized many quiet greenway-type streets, the Westside Trail, several bike-friendly cut-throughs (one gravel!), and creatively utilized a shopping center parking lot, an office park parking lot, and some sidewalk to avoid a couple not-so-bike-friendly roads. The ride passed many points of interested including two entrances to Tualatin Hills Nature Park, the Aloha Mall shopping center, and BG Food Cartel food cart pod.

In June, WeBike will have a meet-up to talk about bike camping! We are always looking for new participants- no experience necessary. Learn about all the ways you can carry camping gear by bike, what you need to bring, where to go, and get all your questions answered! Camp coffee and snacks provided. Read all the details on the Shift/Pedalpalooza calendar listing and RSVP here.

Find WeBike events on The Street Trust events calendar and shared to the WeBike Instagram and Twitter.

The WeBike-Portland private Facebook group is a resource, hub, and a way to connect with others riding in the area. If you have any questions about biking or great biking tips you want to share, post them there!

Ways allies can support WeBike: promote events on socials, print a poster, and donate to The Street Trust.

 

Join WeBike’s Next Ride!

 

Donate to support WeBike!

 

 

Despite challenges created by the ongoing pandemic, last week The Street Trust’s 11th annual Oregon Active Transportation Summit drew 95 speakers from around the region, state, and country to talk about the needs and challenges in our transportation systems and how we can address them.

From learning about how transportation advocates can improve media coverage of traffic deaths, to exploring the new public plazas in downtown Portland, and discussing how cities can reach zero auto ownership, this year’s summit demonstrated our commitment to promoting all modes to achieve a safe, accessible, equitable, and sustainable transportation system.

 

Summit 2022 – by the numbers:

  • The Summit included 30 virtual sessions over the course of 3 fun-packed days
  • 158 passionate transportation thinkers and doers attended to Monday’s 3-hour opening session featuring USDOT Civil Rights Office chief Irene Marion, Metro President Lynn Peterson, Youth Climate Activist Cassie Wilson, Multnomah County Commissioner Jessica Vega Pederson, Washington County Commissioner Nafisa Fai, and N. Clackamas School Board Chair Libra Forde among other community leaders
  • By Day 3, Summit sessions had accumulated more than 1,000 views from over 300 attendees — ta 50% increase over last year’s attendance
  • The experience included 10 fun and engaging in-person events across the Portland metro, including a visit to the Afrovillage MAX conversion and a closing happy hour sponsored by Nelson/Nygaard (thank you!)

 

The Street Trust team was thrilled to bring back some in-person programming and we were humbled by the terrific response we got from attendees and volunteers who helped out. After two completely virtual Summits, it was wonderful to see our friends getting together as a community again. 

Missed the in-person events this year? Below are snapshots of just a few of the exciting adventures put together by The Street Trust and our partners. Watch for video recordings of sessions as they’re posted as well as our summary report coming soon.

Thank you to our generous sponsors!

Cars on a highway, with a skyline in the background that is in Portland's Lloyd District.

 

Toll lanes are unfair! 

We hear this a lot, but it’s not necessarily true. In fact, there are many things happening on our streets and roads right now more inequitable than road pricing.

Road pricing systems are direct charges levied for the use of roads. These most commonly take the form of highway tolls, but can also be distance or time-based fees, congestion charges, or charges based on specific vehicle size or fuel types. 

Conversations about the implementation of road pricing systems are emerging across all levels of government throughout the Portland Metro region. From the demand-based parking model proposed by PBOT’s POEM Task Force to the Interstate Bridge Replacement Project and ODOT’s I-205 tolling project, our region is exploring various methods and strategies to implement charges for road use – pushing back on the normalized practice of subsidizing road use for drive-alone trips.  

The Street Trust supports road user charges that reflect the true cost of driving and greenhouse gas emissions, while improving travel for everyone. We’re excited about a future where the cost of driving more accurately reflects its negative impact on everything from the climate to public safety and individual health. However, we know that the primary objective of many road pricing models (even in the Portland metro) is to generate revenue  to cover the cost of new highway construction rather than to change behavior to improve traffic flow and help us reach our climate goals.

This is unacceptable and we’re working to change it.

We will continue to show up at decision-making tables across the region fighting to ensure that before any of these policies are put into place there’s a guarantee that they will improve equitable outcomes throughout our transportation system. 

If the future of road pricing is something that interests you we invite you to join us as we move toward a better future, together! 

 

Support Advocacy For Effective Congestion Pricing

Weigh In! Complete ODOT’s Pricing Survey by May 16th

 

Picture of wide, auto-centric roadway

 

The Street Trust is proud to announce that Seattle-based Bullitt Foundation has committed a major gift to fund, in part, the #OurStreets regional community mobilization campaign. This award is among a suite of funding requests The Street Trust submitted to foundations this year in an effort to grow community power to fight for and win transportation policy and investments that prioritize safety, accessibility, equity, and climate justice in our region.

Their generous $45,000 contribution will support critical work engaging diverse and underserved communities across the greater Portland metro. It includes building out a data visualization tool, the #OurStreets Scorecard, which is designed to empower communities to advocate for investments such as street lighting, sidewalks, and transit service where they live, work, and play. It will also support other regional advocacy work underway at The Street Trust, including the implementation of equitable congestion pricing, e-bike lending libraries, and ensuring the multi-billion dollar Interstate Bridge Replacement Project has a positive impact on multimodal transportation in the region.  

This gift is a significant investment in Portland-area mobility at a time when the region is facing numerous challenges and experiencing a changing-of-the-guard in leadership. An agenda-setting funder of climate action for a quarter-century in the Pacific Northwest, in 2019 the Bullitt Foundation funded The Street Trust to found what is now known as the Getting There Together Coalition (GTT), an effort to lead development with Metro regional government on a multi-billion dollar transportation measure. GTT continues to advocate for transportation justice in our region today. 

Bullitt Foundation is giving away most of what’s left of its endowment during the next couple of years, so this is likely to be one of their last investments in helping Portlanders achieve equitable, climate-smart transportation in our region.

“We see this as an important opportunity to elevate multimodal transportation as a priority issue at all levels of government and in all parts of the region,” says Henry Miller, Grants & Impact Manager at The Street Trust. “It will help us empower communities to advocate for themselves and hold their leaders accountable for making real progress in improving transportation options at a time when they’re desperately needed.”

We still have $30,000 more to raise to reach our goal. Please join us in thanking the Bullitt Foundation for their investment in our future, and consider joining them by giving to The Street Trust today.

Promo Poster for Eath Day Run with Sponsors

Happy Earth Month!

 

The Street Trust is teaming up with Nossa Familia, Bivo, and Legwork Local Delivery to amplify Earth Day on Friday, April 22nd. Our partnership with these businesses is part of a larger campaign hosted by Earth Day Oregon that amplifies ways to take action in Oregon on Earth Day. Each of our business partners are doing their part to amplify Earth Day while supporting the work The Street Trust is doing to create a transportation future that is equitable and sustainable.

Thank you to our business partners, to Human Access Project, and to Earth Day Oregon for assisting us in celebrating Earth Day.

Want to get in on the action? Join The Street Trust on a 3.65-mile run celebrating active transportation, community health, and our Earth on Sunday, April 24th.

 

REGISTER for ‘MOVE FOR MOTHER EARTH’

 

 

Dear Friend,

Trust means different things to different people. Here at The Street Trust, we’re working hard to understand and improve trust within our organization, out in the community, and across our programs and efforts.

Building trust is time consuming and often thankless work that can entail stepping back and supporting another’s leadership. It can entail sacrifice in the short term for greater movement building in the long. Sometimes, building trust means giving without strings attached. Maintaining that trust is more artform than science and measuring it can prove challenging. We feel empowered when trust is present and weakened when it is absent.

 

Regardless how you understand the word, we’re working hard to be worthy of the ‘trust’ in our name.

 

Here are a few recent examples of trust-building investments that we’ve made recently that wouldn’t have been possible without you trusting us to do the right things with your financial support:

  • Sending our Policy Transformation Manager to the Office of State Rep. Khan Pham to provide transportation policy support for the entire 2022 Legislative Session
  • Providing fiscal sponsorship free of charge to BikeLoud PDX while they sought non-profit status from the IRS
  • Challenging IP 41 in the courts – a ballot initative that would impede our region’s ability to implement systemwide congestion pricing for demand management
  • Supporting research led by Portland State/TREC that will help policymakers and the e-bike advocacy community understand the best incentives to promote e-bike adoption.
  • Developing the #OurStreets Scorecard, a free-to-the public online, data-democratizing tool that will empower communities regionwide to advocate for projects that meet their needs where they live 

 

Fighting for better policy. Forging strategic partnerships. Founding and staffing coalitions. Educating people from the youngest students to gubernatorial candidates…. the list goes on. At the end of the day, trust is our bottom line and none of it would be possible without you. 

 

Contribute to our TRUST fund today!

 

 

Alt text: 2-up image with Twitter post featuring image of auto crashed into telephone pole adjacent to bike share station alongside image of cyclist forced into the street by car parked in bike lane.

During the past year, The Street Trust has renewed its focus on regional transportation advocacy but we still show up at the municipal level to shape better outcomes.

Recently, we showed up for street users in the City of Portland in four key efforts:

  • Supported PBOT’s proposed Parking Climate and Equitable Mobility Transaction Fee alongside our colleagues at Verde, Parking Reform Network, Oregon Environmental Council, and Getting There Together coalition. The resolution to apply a parking surcharge to fund services like the transportation wallet and Biketown passed City Council unanimously this week.  
  • Supported PBOT’s Safety Camera bill (HB 4105-1) in the Oregon Legislature to allow civilian review of automated traffic enforcement citations. (Did you know that in Portland, 100% of automated traffic enforcement violation review occurs on police over-time!?!) This legislation has passed out of the House and Senate committees. Now it’s on to a floor vote and, if that is successful, back to the House Rules Committee one more time before the session ends. 
  • Opposed PBOT’s proposed installation of unprotected cycling infrastructure on NE Killingsworth along with with BikeLoud PDX, Andando en Bicicletas y Caminando, and Community Cycling Center.  You can read about our close call with an out of control automobile on NE Killingsworth last weekend along with recommendations for reducing traffic fatalities in this Oregon Way piece: We must act now to stop traffic Fatalities in Oregon.
  • Opposed Mayor Wheeler’s sweeps of houseless people camping along dangerous roadways. Nowhere in any transportation study, advocacy campaign, nor community forum seeking to address our roadway safety problems has it been suggested that unhoused people and encampments should be swept or outright banned as a partial solution to this crisis. We organized with over two-dozen organizations, including Oregon Walks, Verde, Street Roots, Central City Concern, and Transition Projects, Inc. to push back on this non-solution to our traffic fatalities crisis and will continue to promote proven solutions to traffic safety. Read the Street Roots update here: Mayor’s order forbidding camping in high-traffic areas leaves unhoused Portlanders with few places to go

This is an important level of advocacy work that The Street Trust attempts to replicate locally in cities across the region. But it is labor intensive and difficult to fund. Your support makes the difference between The Street Trust having the capacity to lead on the these issues or sitting by in silence. 

Join The Street Trust or make a donation today.