Bike to Work Week begins on same day as traffic slowly grinds along East 1st Avenue in Vancouver

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      In addition to the sunny weather, there's another reason for East Vancouver residents to embrace Bike to Work Week, which begins today and runs until June 3.

      A FortisBC construction project is creating traffic headaches along major East Side roads that bring tens of thousands of commuters in and out of Vancouver.

      It's likely adding to the number of two-wheelers making their way along the Union-Adanac Corridor, which runs from downtown Vancouver to Boundary Road before connecting to the Francis Union Bikeway in Burnaby.

      This morning, lane closures began along East 1st Avenue from Nanaimo Street to Rupert Street and from the Highway 1 overpass to Boundary Road.

      Lane closures began last week in Burnaby along Gilmore Avenue from Graveley Street to 1st Avenue and along Douglas Road, south of Carleton Avenue.

      This has forced more commuters along Hastings Street and the Grandview Highway.

      This is being done to clear the way for FortisBC to replace a 20-kilometre natural gas line, as a 20-inch pipe is being replaced with a 30-inch pipe.

      “We know there will be congestion, so we appreciate commuters’ patience and encourage them to plan for extra time to reach their destinations,” FortisBC vice president Douglas Stout said in an April 5 news release announcing this project. “FortisBC will work as safely and quickly as possible to reduce the impact of our construction.”

      Meanwhile, there are more than 80 "celebration stations" around Metro Vancouver as part of Bike to Work Week.

      They offer free drinks, snacks, basic bike tune-ups, and prizes.

      You can find a map of locations on the Hub Cycling website.

      There's a map of bike routes on the City of Vancouver website.