Vancouver Gets [Bike] Friendly-er

55 kilometres of new, safe bike routes to be added within two years

“We’ve made a lot of improvements to Vancouver’s bike network in the past 18 months, but we need to do more if we want to meet our target of making cycling 10 per cent of all trips by 2020,” said Mayor Robertson.

Recommendations for a new Vancouver Cycling Program Master Plan going to council later this week will not only add 55 kilometres of new, safer bike lanes and bike routes over the next two years, says Mayor Gregor Robertson, “they will lay the groundwork for a green transformation of the city’s pedestrian and cycle network.”

When work is completed, the city’s current 415-kilometre bike route network – already one of the best in North America – will have grown by 122 kilometres since 2008.

“By making immediate improvements to the bike network in the next two years and developing a new 10-year Cycling Plan, we’re taking real action towards making Vancouver a more bike-friendly city,” continued Robertson.

The report, scheduled to come to council on Thursday, will initiate the planning process for a new 10-year Cycling Program Master Plan for Vancouver. The report also includes recommendations for immediate investments in the City’s bike network for 2010 and 2011, with funding to:

    • begin work and consultations on separated bike lanes outside of the downtown core;
    • make spot improvements to existing bikeways to address safety and capacity concerns;
    • implement the long-awaited Comox–Helmcken Greenway project to connect the Seawall, the West End and downtown to the Central Valley Greenway, which ends in New Westminster;
    • implement the North Arm Trail Greenway, generally along 59th Avenue from West Boulevard to Vivian;
    • create a new cross-town bikeway along 45th Avenue from Balaclava to Nanaimo;
    • improve cycling connections to the Canada Line Bridge, which carries cycle traffic over the Fraser River to Richmond; and
    • make improvements to on-street bicycle parking

The total investment in these projects will be about $25 million, or the equivalent of 30% of the $85 million streets and roads budget for the same period.

“These investments, all drawn from existing resources, will be earmarked for cycling or greenway infrastructure to make our bike network safer and more convenient for everyone,” Mayor Robertson said.[Read more on Mayor of Vancouver’s Blog]

The proposals in this report are in addition to plans underway to complete separated bike lanes from the Burrard Bridge to the Dunsmuir Viaduct across the downtown core.The report can be read Here.

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