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Portland Bureau of Transportation

Phone: 503-823-5185

Fax: 503-823-7576

1120 SW Fifth Ave, Suite 800, Portland, OR 97204

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Adaptive Bicycling Pilot Project

Person riding an adaptive bicyclePlease take our survey - We want to hear from you!

Save the Date!

Adaptive Bicycle Rental Open House

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Portland Building, 1120 SW 5th Avenue, 2nd Floor

4:30 p.m. - 7:00 p.m

The Portland Bureau of Transportation is developing a pilot project to increase access, especially to Portlanders with disabilities, to bicycling. The Adaptive Bicycle Workgroup is advising PBOT on the pilot's development.  The project is planned to launch in June 2017. 


PBOT has received two requests for physical accommodation with its BIKETOWN bike share system. PBOT staff have interviewed bike share systems in other cities, City program staff, companies and organizations serving people with disabilities, and most importantly Portlanders with disabilities.

In summer 2016, PBOT attended the Adaptive Bicycle Clinic, Wheel Connect (an event sponsored by Oregon Spinal Cord Injury Connection), and Incight's Summer HandCycling Series. Staff interviewed a number of people with disabilities about an adaptive bicycling rental service.  

The pilot concept is based on interviews with Portlanders using mobility devices that expressed an interest in an adaptive bicycling rental service. Individuals with disabilities interviewed almost universally expressed a desire and/or need for a staffed service. Individuals explained their need for personal wheelchair storage and assistance with fitting, the need or desire for staff assistance to move between their mobility device and the adaptive bicycle. Because of safety concerns of riding in auto traffic, and a primary interest in exercise and recreation, people wanted to use adaptive bicycles to ride on trails or paths without motor vehicles. 

At this time, the intent is to focus on adaptive cycle rentals through existing bike rental businesses located on or in close proximity to non-motorized trails. PBOT is considering providing both hand bicycles and three wheeled bicycles. Longer term adaptive bicycle rental is currently available through Adaptive Sports Northwest.

Next Steps:

Project development and planning will continue through spring 2017. PBOT currently has a pilot concept and wants future customers, City partners such as Portland Parks and Recreation, service providers and interested parties to play an active role in developing the program. In winter 2017, PBOT will be conducting a public outreach process to further refine the pilot. PBOT has made initial inquiries to a number of bike rental shops, but further discussions need to take place. 

To date, PBOT’s outreach has focused on people with disabilities that are using wheelchairs or mobility devices. Staff recognize the need to broaden this to include people that may have balance issues, such as seniors. 

Get Involved!

  • Please take our survey

  • Please attend the Open House on Tuesday, April 25th, 4:30 p.m. - 7:00 p.m., Portland Building, 1120 SW 5th Avenue, 2nd Floor

  • You can also follow the Adaptive Bicycle Workgroup Meetings online or attend in person. (Please note that public comment is limited to the beginning of the meeting)

  • Questions or comments? Please contact Steve Hoyt-McBeth, (503) 823-7191 (News Media please contact Dylan Rivera, (503) 823-3723)

Current and recent PBOT projects and initiatives related to adaptive bicycling:

This pilot would further PBOT’s work to increase access to adaptive bicycling. PBOT’s current and past projects include:

  • Adaptive bikes for the Safe Routes to School in-school bike safety education program for students who would benefit from them.
  • One-on-one bike riding instruction to students who haven’t successfully learned how to ride a bike with the Safe Routes program.
  • Full scholarships for Bike First ( for all eligible Portland students. Bike First is a camp teaching riding skills to students with disabilities including those with Down syndrome, autism, cerebral palsy, visual impairments, and developmental delays. Safe Routes has been a key sponsor of this effort since 2008.
  • Purchasing and donating a trailer full of Senior Trikes to Portland Parks and Recreations for its Senior Recreation program. 


Other Resources

Adaptive Sports Northwest

Bike First

Different Spokes (bike shop focusing on adaptive bikes)

Incight Summer Handcycling Series

Oregon Spinal Cord Injury Connection

Portland Parks Adaptive and Inclusive Program

Portland Parks Senior Recreation Program

PBOT Staff Contact: Steve Hoyt-McBeth,, (503) 823-7191.

Photo of person riding adaptive bicycle courtesy of Jonathan Maus,