Vancouver pledges $25M to cycle lane plan
Vancouver city council has voted unanimously to spend $25 million to create and improve bike lanes throughout the city, re-writing the city's map on how people get around.
The money will be spent over the next two years to build about 55 kilometres of new bike lanes. It will also enhance and improve connections from south Vancouver to the Canada Line Bridge.
Other notable changes include extending separated bike lanes along Burrard Street and the Dunsmuir Viaduct, a pedestrian cycling greenway along Helmcken Street and an east-west bike route along 45th Avenue.
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About four per cent of Vancouver commuters use bikes but the city hopes to boost that number to 10 per cent.
Mayor Gregor Robertson says the investment represents the biggest amount of money ever spent on cycling in Vancouver.
"This is catch up for many years of not investing in the bike system but I think it'll put us in a leadership position in North America as a safe place to ride a bike," he said.
He says the money represents about 30 per cent of the roads and streets budget for the next two years.
"It's coming out of existing accounts," Robertson said.
Although there was some backlash from motorists when the city created a separated bike lane on the Burrard Bridge last summer, for the most part the experiment was successful. A new bike lane on the Dunsmuir Viaduct has also been positively received.
Cyclist Adair Harper told CTV News she's all for the changes.
"I just started biking downtown. It can be a pretty scary place to be without bike lanes and separated stuff. I definitely think it's a good idea," he said.
With a report from CTV British Columbia's Leah Hendry