Tuesday, May 10, 2011

NEWS: Save our bike lanes

It was with dismay that I read the morning news to find out that the city of Charlottetown is considering removing one of the only bike lanes in the city. It would seem that there have been some complaints that the bike lane through Victoria Park is causing confusion and inconvenience for motorist who now have to drive around the back side of the park before driving through the one open lane and this is preventing people from enjoying the park.

While city council has not yet decided to to bow down to a frivolous complaint, they are looking into the issue. It is of utmost importance that we do not set a terrible precedent by removing one of the very few bike lanes available in this city.

While the bike lane through Victoria park was not an especially effective commuting route, it is very essential to generating the critical mass we need to gain acceptance in this very cyclist-unfriendly city. Just last summer the city announced that they were planning on expanding bike lanes to various routes around the city. Rather than remove bike lanes, we need to be expanding them further. The more safer lanes available to cyclist, the more cyclists will be willing to leave the car at home and ride. More bikes will make it safer for all of us as it becomes more common place to see a bike on the roads, drivers will eventually begin to see us as a part of traffic rather than a nuisance.

We cannot allow the city to take this step backwards. We instead need to be pushing to expand the system of lanes we do have, not removing them. Everybody who lives in this city needs to let city council know that it is completely unacceptable to remove this bike lane.

To contact the mayor, send an email to mayor@city.charlottetown.pe.ca

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