We have a few updates for you: events coming up this month, some new infrastructure we spotted and some other items we thought you would enjoy. We'll start with the events.
Free RBC Bluesfest Valet Bike Parking, July 5 - 15
Bike Ottawa traditionally looks after your bicycle at the RBC Bluesfest. Over 70,000 bicycles have been looked after since 2006, and not one got lost or stolen. And all is done by volunteers. Bike parking is free, but we accept donations. Bring some cash for the donation jar. Half of the net proceeds goes to Blues in the Schools, the other half goes to Bike Ottawa. More...
This Little Bike Goes to Market - 2018 edition, July 8
This Little Bike goes to Market is back after a year off, showing off kid-carrying and adult mobility aid bikes at Lansdowne Farmers Market! If you're thinking about buying a kid carrying bike, or if you have a mobility impairment that prevents you from riding a "normal" bike, this event is for you. More...
Tactical Suburbanism: Pop-up Bike Lane in Bells Corners, July 22
Action takes place on Moody at the green dots (image Google)
Tactical (sub)urbanism has arrived, and we want you to join us there! Expect a BBQ social, speed limit reduction, pylons, many fellow cyclists, and no doubt plenty of curious onlookers. You'll get a chance to experience riding on a traffic-calmed Moodie Drive in Bells Corners as you never have before, in a protected bike lane. More...
Hospital Link open
Bollards on Sparks Street
Bike Ottawa member Karen Gordon (@PhysioKaren) reported that new bike connections across Riverside, the rail tracks and the Transitway are now open, running alongside the new Hospital link road, aptly named ‘Hospital Link’.
We’ll be going there soon to check it out. Here is a link to Karen's Tweet with four photos.
Polling among Ottawa residents revealed the most irritating thing on Sparks Street is car traffic in a pedestrian zone. Some drivers enter from Elgin to go four blocks down on Sparks to get a coffee at Tim’s. While contractors need a permit to park, Sparks Street often appears to be a parking lot rather than a pedestrian mall. "Avid" pedestrian Kevin O’Donnell was hit by a truck one day, while walking in the mall.
Bollards in place on Sparks Street Mall: no more cruisin' to Tim's
This week, the city started to add bollards to the mall, making it impossible to drive down the mall. There is also talk of allowing slow cycling on Sparks Street. From what we observed, this could work because the cyclists who sometimes bike on Sparks appear to stay under 15 kph and do look out for pedestrians. More changes are coming as a consultant from Montreal is currently drawing up ideas and suggestions for further improvements.
Cycling with the Governor General on Canada Day
President of Bike Ottawa Heather Shearer (@heatshear) and Medal recipient and former president Hans Moor (@HansontheBike) were invited late last week to cycle with Her Excellency Governor General Julie Payette on Canada Day.
Hans and Heather before the ride started
On Canada Day, we cycled from the Peacekeeping Monument across from Major Hill Park and the National Art Gallery to Parliament Hill, together with members from the Canadian Forces, Moffatt Farm Cycling club, Velo Canada Bikes, YMCA and several others. The aim of the Governor General's ride was to promote a healthy and active lifestyle. It was a very hot day as you can see from our sweaty shirts (We went perhaps 7 kph).
When Heather meets Julie (photo Hans on the Bike)
Experience the ride yourself from Heather's and Hans’ bikes. We put a one minute clip together for your convenience. We also uploaded the ride picture by picture on Mapillary. Check the clip here: Canada Day bicycle ride with the Governor General of Canada.
Interactive Mapping Tools: Identifying Opportunities to Improve Cycling Infrastructure in Ottawa
Councillor Jeff Leiper and Bike Ottawa released a report in May prepared for Councillor Leiper on the safety and connectivity of Ottawa’s bicycle network. We took a closer look into how to create a faster uptake in local cycling: cycling adoption can be increased by developing a low-stress network that is comfortable and where the perceived level of danger is low. We brought a number of interactive maps online and you can see them here.
NCC Strategic Plan for Capital region pathways
The NCC is pursuing the process of renewing the strategic plan entitled Pathway Network for Canada’s Capital Region (2006). The purpose of the revised plan will be to provide a framework for future planning and day-to-day management of the Capital Pathway. Read more and leave your thoughts here.
Ontario Premier Ford cancels cycling funding: call to action
From Share the Road today: This week, communities across Ontario received notice from the Ministry of Transportation that the Ontario Municipal Commuter Program (OMCC) has been cancelled. The OMCC was funded through the cap and trade program, which has also been cancelled. This is not surprising. The new government was very clear on their intentions to cancel cap and trade throughout the election, however, it is still disappointing to see the official announcement.
Through the OMCC, Ontario invested $93 million in cycling infrastructure. This investment will result in new and improved cycling facilities and Bicycle Master Plans across 118 municipalities and communities have until December 2020 to complete their planned projects under the program. However, there will be no new funding through OMCC moving forward. What can you do? More...
Quebec Highway Code changes
Important changes to the Quebec Highway code have come into effect. There are new rules for cyclists included too, some good and some questionable. Police in Quebec will enforce the new rules after a short grace period. The law is the law so until it changes, you better get prepared.
Don't get caught without reflectors - Photo Hans on the Bike
It means more reflectors on your bike (be it reflectors, tape or ankle bands), some changes in signalling and –if you bike with care- legally crossing roads on cross walks on your bike. Read a blog post by Hans on the Bike here: Cycling in Quebec? Don’t caught without reflectors! And yes, those rules will be enforced in Gatineau too. Deck your bike with boughs of tape now…
While equipping our bikes with reflectors left, ride and centre, we were reading up on the Chelsea Trail in Quebec. We have a bit of a concern that cyclists will not be overly welcome. Here are a few quotes we spotted on a website:
- “A rustic community trail which serves Chelsea residents by connecting nine Chelsea neighbourhoods and offering safe access to active living for Chelsea residents of all ages.”
- “Cyclists must control speed (max 15 km/hr) and always yield to others”.
- “Install stop signs on the path for (14) private roads” (ie roads have priority)
An example of how access to the Chelsea Trail might look like (image from website)
It looks like families with trailers and cargo bikes might have to take a pass on the trail as currently proposed. Cyclists might want to follow this closely. Ideally it connects to the NCC pathways, but it appears that it is currently not the case, based on the info we have. Read more on the website of Chelsea Trail (PDF - February 2018).
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