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Dunsmuir bike lane trial up tomorrow: One submission here

May 19th, 2010 · 37 Comments

The trial for the Dunsmuir bike lane (soon to be followed by a trial Burrard or Thurlow lane, is my guess) is being voted on tomorrow morning at the 9:30 committee meeting, item 4 on the agenda. I think there might be some strong opinions on this (a joke, get it?) so I’ll get the ball rolling with this comment sent to me by someone planning to make a presentation tomorrow. City report: DUNSMUIRBIKELANE

My submission is to bring to your attention the omissions in that report that makes the conclusions included in that report questionable.

Impact on congestion and pollution

There is no discussion on the impact on traffic flow, resulting congestion and increased pollution from the proposal to remove vehicular traffic lanes on Dunsmuir Street.  The report identifies that turning from Dunsmuir street will become more difficult but does not make any attempts to deal with that problem.  Further, the report indentifies that buses will be negatively impacted but fails to consider the impact on bus commuters.  This shows complete lack of preparation on how to deal with congestion or even most rudimentary estimate of the extent of the gridlock.  The Council is being asked to take on the responsibility for the worsening of transportation infrastructure without being given any reasonable estimates how much worse off will the commuters be.

No consultation

The Council is being misled that the Staff conducted broad consultations with various stakeholders.  The report devotes most of its space to conversations with the Bicycle Network Subcommittee – a group that is biased in its support for dedicated bicycle facilities.  68 out of 1000 surveys that were returned from local businesses indicate how flawed and ineffective your communication methods were.  Delivering a brochure to an employee of a business along Dunsmuir street without ensuring that the owners are reached for their comments is a waste of taxpayers money and your staff time.  Finally, you will read about the online survey that was flawed by not controlling for multiple responses from the same IP address and the fact that the survey was broadly publicized among cycling activists but no similar effort was made to reach delivery companies, taxi services and bus drivers operating in Vancouver.  This show the failure on the part of the Staff to provide the Council with the broad and balanced feedback from the public.

Pressing funding needs

Considering the lack of documented public support for this project, failure to consider the impact on the commuters and businesses and the $800,000 price tag for this project and contrasting it with the financial challenges facing the Council it would be prudent to reallocate this funding to the Public Libraries or the Vancouver Fire Department to compensate them for the cuts that they suffered in the current budget.

Respectfully,

Maciek Kon

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