In an encouraging bit of news, Portland, Oregon’s Bike Master Plan is officially including mountain biking as an important part of the growing cycling infrastructure.  Here’s why:

Committee co-chair Mia Birk (former city bike coordinator now planner at Portland-based Alta Planning + Design) told the group that mountain biking has been included because “it’s a gateway activity.” People who might be afraid of riding on city streets, she said, like the appeal of riding off-road and they later become bike commuters. Birk also said that the League of American bicyclists has taken note of Portland’s lack of off-road riding opportunities and that “the community has been on our backs about it for a long time.”

Sounds like a good idea to me.  See what else the Master Plan is up to on BikePortland.org.

What do you think?