With the concrete-barrier-protected bike lane on the Burrard Bridge having proven to be a success (or at least not a media disaster), the city has been looking at other places to install separated lanes. I heard about some interesting possibilities, which I won’t list here for fear of needlessly inciting riots. But apparently city engineers have decided on tamer options, as per this news release that came out from the tireless news-release-writer at city hall, who apparently never gets a day off. Especially not with the Olympics approaching, when lots of new initiatives and stories about Vancouver’s achievements on various fronts need to be dangled in front of hungry media.
Mayor to support separated bike lanes on Dunsmuir Viaduct and downtown core
A report coming to council on Thursday supports building on the success of the Burrard Bridge bike lane trial by putting a protected bike lane on the Dunsmuir Viaduct, a move Mayor Gregor Robertson says will help make it safer for cyclists entering downtown.
“We know from the Burrard Bridge that when we separate bike lanes from cars with protective barriers, more people cycle and it reduces the risk of injury or accidents,” said Mayor Robertson. “We need more protected bike lanes in Vancouver and the Dunsmuir Viaduct is the logical next step.”
The report recommends installing a protected bike lane on the north side of the Dunsmuir Viaduct. The bike lane would be created by reconfiguring the existing barriers, and would not remove traffic lanes. Staff recommend installing the lane following the Closing Ceremonies of the Olympics because the Dunsmuir Viaduct will be closed until March 2, 2010 due to security requirements.
The report also recommends developing a network of protected bike lanes through downtown Vancouver, which would connect the Burrard Bridge bike lane with the Dunsmuir Viaduct. The City would undertake public consultation on where the separated bike lanes would go, and report back this spring.
“Getting more people to bike in Vancouver is a big part of how we can become the greenest city in the world,” said the Mayor. “Cities throughout Europe and Asia have hundreds of kilometres of protected bike lanes, and we know from the Burrard Bridge bike lane that there is a demand for them here. Developing safe, separated bike lanes downtown – and eventually throughout Vancouver – will make our city a better place for cyclists, pedestrians and drivers alike.”
The full council report can be read at: http://vancouver.ca/ctyclerk/cclerk/20100204/documents/csbu2.pdf