June 24, 2009
The chair of the Winnipeg Trails Association says the city and the province aren’t delivering on a promised commuter cycling route along the city’s rapid transit corridor. Construction began Monday on Phase 1 of the 3.6-kilometre high-speed bus lane that will run from The Forks to Jubilee Avenue.
Paul Jordan, chair of the trails association, said for years the plan presented by the city included a bike lane alongside the corridor, but during public consultations a few weeks ago, the most recent plan showed the bike lane dead-ending at the Osborne Street underpass, just south of Winnipeg’s “confusion corner”.
According to Jordan, the underpass is too narrow for cyclists to keep a safe distance from traffic. “We’re just going to be putting a lot of people into a dangerous situation,” he said. Continuing the bike lane through the underpass may be costly but it will be well worth it for the safety of cyclists, Jordan said. He wants transit planners to consider more cycle-friendly alternatives.
“We’ve never really been involved in the process — ‘we’ meaning the bike groups and the recreational trail users,” he said. “Can we take a look at it? Are you aware, the planners of this thing, that you really are creating a dangerous situation? And have you got a plan for that? Because right now we don’t see it.”
Officials with the city and transit were not immediately available for comment.