Vancouver council gives green light to $1.25 million for new bike plan, improvements

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      Vision Vancouver councillor Andrea Reimer pointed today (May 6) to the Burrard Bridge bike-lane trial in order to justify approving funding for more cycling infrastructure.

      “To see it not only happen but succeed with flying colours tells me we’re ready to move to the next step,” Reimer said during a meeting of council’s city services and budgets committee.

      Council voted unanimously to support spending $1.25 million on a list of items that includes $500,000 to develop a 10-year cycling master plan to replace the 1999 plan that is nearing its best-before date.

      “We have a lot of catching up to do,” Mayor Gregor Robertson told council, echoing many of his colleagues’ statements. “This is a big step to approaching where we need to be.”

      Vision councillor Tim Stevenson called the vote “historic”, while fellow Vision councillor and committee chair Raymond Louie termed it “a big step forward”.

      “If we’re to realize the opportunity to have a generation of cyclists in this city, this type of infrastructure is absolutely necessary,” Louie said before casting his yes vote.

      Alongside the new 10-year master plan, council approved spending up to $400,000 to develop a cycling monitoring program, $100,000 on additional bicycle parking, and $250,000 on “spot” improvements to existing bike routes.

      Non-Partisan Association councillor Suzanne Anton said anything that encourages more cycling is a good thing. She mentioned that she has biked across the country and is planning to cycle the world with her husband, Olin, starting this year.

      “This summer, we cycle from Paris to Prague,” Anton told the Straight outside council chambers.

      Earlier on in the meeting, Anton noted that people forget that cycling is “fun”.

      “It’s just so great to be on a bike,” Anton said.

      Scott Edwards, Vancouver's manager of greenways and neighbourhood transportation, gives an update on the Burrard Bridge bike lane.



      build bike lanes, it's easy and no political fallout

      May 6, 2010 at 8:45pm

      Cycling is fun but when Vancouver goes out its way to encourage regional transit like the RAV Line and Evergreen Line, more people are going to commute hours every day on transit rather than live and work in their community to bike or walk. Vancouver prides itself on being Green but it really only takes on easy and safe environmental-political battles. Sure you created the Burrard bike lane, but doing nothing was not an option and the previous councils were negligent in doing nothing for so long about the unsafe crossing.

      I'm sure that you had no choice but to either spend $60 million for a new bridge or to come up with a makeshift solution to the cycling chaos. You came up with a makeshift solution and luckily it worked out fine to allocate one lane to cyclists but car emissions went up by 10% to do it due to the longer driver commutes.

      Has the COV done anything about TransLink's obscene use of diesel buses on our trolley bus routes? Not a chance, taking on TransLink would be too difficult. Besides, the transit planners at the COV are sycophants and do whatever TransLink tells them.