ROBERTO CASANUEVA and I are loitering outside Whole Foods in the Pearl District, spending the morning doing the most “Portland” task imaginable: loading up his bike with 150 pounds of organic food to deliver to homeless shelters.

But it’s not just any bike! It’s a European-made electric-assist cargo tricycle, complete with a custom-made giant box on back that can haul up to 600 pounds. Casanueva is arguably the city’s slowest bike messenger, one of seven part-timers employed by B-Line, a bicycle delivery service that has replaced traditional delivery trucks for some Portland businesses, dropping off everything from dry cleaning to Thanksgiving turkeys.


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