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Commissioner Steve Novick

Official Website for Commissioner Steve Novick

Phone: 503-823-4682

fax: 503-823-4019

1221 SW 4th Ave. Suite 210, Portland, OR 97204

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Commissioner Novick: Economic argument will beat the 'bike backlash'

September 17, 2013 | At an event held last night in OHSU's Kohler Pavillion to mark the end of the first phase of the Green Lane Project, City Transportation Commissioner Steve Novick said the way to respond to the "bike backlash" in Portland is to appeal to people's pocketbooks.

Novick, speaking in front of a packed room of national and local bike advocacy leaders and city staffers, said that new PBOT Director Leah Treat has likely been "shocked" to realize anti-bike sentiments exist in Portland. He then went on to share his preferred method of countering the backlash.

"In order to keep our momentum going," Novick said, "We're going to have to explain the benefits of bicycling and just how valuable these investments are." A key component to Novick's argument for bicycling is something he hasn't wavered from since he was still a City Council candidate: how bicycling positively impacts public health and health care costs.

Here are more of Novick's comments:

"We have to talk more about people's pocketbooks. One thing we need to talk more about is how much we're saving on health care because people are riding bikes. And that's something we're all saving — not just the bicyclists — because most of us have insurance which means we're a big insurance pool, which means that when anybody is healthier, we all READ FULL ARTICLE