In the months before the 2018 municipal election, CycleWR volunteers have been taking municipal electoral candidates for bike rides to show off the best and worst of the cycling infrastructure in their ward/city/region. For a full list of completed rides, click here. CycleWR is a non-partisan organization that does not support any particular party or candidate. Summaries are written by volunteers or candidates and may not reflect the mandate or views of CycleWR. For more information, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Had a lovely #CycleWR bike ride tonight with candidate for regional councillor @TrusteeTed We rode out of Vic Park, across West St and past Sobey’s to the dreaded bike tunnel. #KW Cycling infrastructure helps drivers, cyclists, pedestrians: everyone. Build it and they will come. pic.twitter.com/qZA8mZoaXh
— Trish Holmes (@mrdarnley) August 16, 2018
Here’s more from Trish about how the ride went, and what it’s like cycling in that area:
We started in Victoria Park and went down the Iron Horse Trail until the slip trail that leads to West Street, and then on to the trail that leads to Westmount. We stopped at Westmount and talked about the bike and pedestrian tunnel there. Lights have been installed in the tunnel and it has, recently, been cleaned up (previously I’ve seen broken glass, garbage, barriers that obstruct vision, even dead animals and sometimes people are in there), but he understood that this isn’t appropriate bike infrastructure.
I’m all for making use of the facilities that already exist, but not at the risk of personal safety. Also, there is no alternative to the tunnel that would allow a cyclist to stay on their bike. If you want to maintain of a sense of legality, you have to go up to Westmount, down to the intersection, get off your bike, walk across and then bike back up and resume your journey. That’s fine, but if the city intends for cyclists to take the tunnel, there must be some sort of cyclist retro-fit that would make taking the tunnel safer. This lapse in consideration is common in the lesser-used trails throughout the cities.
Ted said he understood, but then asked how a regional councillor could help with a city issue. [But he also acknowledged] that Westmount is a regional road, so it was an interesting conversation about the overlap of jurisdiction and responsibilities, and how that is both beneficial and challenging.
Here’s what Ted says about complete streets in his platform:
“Roads designed and maintained for the safety and comfort of pedestrians and cyclists, children and seniors, public transit and horse and buggies. We must be a welcoming community, safe for everyone.”