Welcome to the Citizens for Safe Cycling (BikeOttawa) newsletter. Help us spread the word and amplify our voice on key cycling issues in Ottawa: Join us as a member and pass this newsletter on to fellow Ottawa cyclists!
It’s been a busy summer so far! Here are just a few updates, and we hope you’ll join us for our Annual General Meeting the evening of September 26th to learn more about what we’ve been up to and what’s coming up (details below)...
CfSC’s First Community Bike Ride in Craig Henry-Centrepointe | Sunday, September 11th
Starting from Centrepointe Library, 101 Centrepointe Dr. | 3pm-4pm; free safety checks/tune-ups starting at 2:30pm
This community ride will be an opportunity to take an easy ride around the Craig Henry- Centrepointe area with lots of opportunities to stop and chat with others about how you can get to popular community destinations and local businesses by bike, and tips on choosing safe routes and making practical trips. Councillor Keith Egli, Chair of the Transportation Committee, will be joining us.
All are welcome! Meet at the bike repair station between the Centrepointe library and the multi-use pathway, and note that we’ll be offering free safety checks and tune-ups between 2:30 and 3pm, just before the ride begins. In case of poor weather, we may reschedule: Please check our Facebook and Twitter pages for updates.
Annual General Meeting (AGM) | Monday, September 26th
Tom Brown Arena, 141 Bayview Road | Doors at 5:30, speakers start at 6:30
It’s that time of year again: Join us for our AGM, which is a great opportunity to connect with the many people and organizations who are working to make Ottawa a great city for cycling. This year we’ll be focusing on data and how we can use it to improve cycling routes and infrastructure: Fraser McLaughlin of EcoCounter will join us as a keynote speaker to share Montreal’s experience collecting and using data on cycling, as well as potential lessons for Ottawa. We’re also expecting a number of area politicians to join us.
The event is free but please register on EventBrite if you plan to attend so we can plan accordingly. Complimentary snacks and coffee will be served.
While the AGM is open to all-- we hope you will consider becoming a member or renewing your membership! Only CfSC members can vote during the official business portion of the meeting, which begins at 8:00.
Promoting safe cycling: Advocacy and infrastructure updates
With so many new infrastructure projects coming up and ongoing across the city, it’s an exciting time to be involved with our Advocacy Working Group (AWG), following infrastructure projects from planning to implementation and providing inputs on how to ensure safety for those biking. The more representation we have from across Ottawa, the better our reach and influence! Email firstname.lastname@example.org to find out how you can get involved, and learn about a few recent updates below.
Cycling Projects Announced in Canada-Ontario Transit Infrastructure Spending Agreement
This week’s announcement of projects approved under the Canada-Ontario agreement for sustainable transportation infrastructure funding included lots of cycling projects across Ottawa: In addition to funding for large projects like the Fifth-Clegg Bridge across the Rideau Canal, a cycle track on Booth Street between the Sir John A. MacDonald Parkway and Albert Street, and Rideau River Crossing near Billings Bridge, the funding also includes a number of new or improved cycling links and pathways in areas like Kanata, Manotick, and Orleans, and funds for renewal of multi-use pathways across the city.
CfSC is impressed with these federal investments: We will be busy following developments on these many new projects, and look forward to seeing and sharing our inputs on detailed plans. You can read the full list of approved projects here.
Opportunities to Have Your Say on Multi-Use Pathways (MUPs)
Some of the MUPs around the city are the responsibility of the National Capital Commission (NCC), while others are built and maintained by the City of Ottawa. Both are currently seeking inputs on different MUPs-- have your say by:
Surveys on Redesign of Elgin and Hawthorne
How would you like to see different street uses prioritized on Elgin and Hawthorne? You can tell the city ahead of a once-in-a-lifetime redesign of these streets by completing this survey. What you say in this survey will influence the design options that are presented as the planning process proceeds. Take a few minutes to share your ideas on what you'd like to see on the Elgin of the future.
Report on Cycling in Kanata North
Results of a recent report on cycling in Kanata North by Envirocentre and Sustain Kanata North highlighted opportunities for investing in safer infrastructure in the area. For example, the report notes that half of the employees of the Kanata North Business District reside within a five kilometre radius: While many of those contacted as a part of the cycling blitz that informed the report said they would like to bike to work, school, or on other local errands, they also noted that a lack of safe routes for bikes kept them driving instead. Read more about the key areas for improvement that they noted in the media coverage and full report.
Cycling Around the Bayview LRT Station
Recent news that the design of the Bayview LRT station signed off for construction by the city last December interrupts the Trillium multi-use pathway (MUP) and connectivity between it and the east-west Albert Street MUP came as a very unwelcome surprise to many of us: CfSC had had been engaged in the station planning consultation process from the very beginning and had advised on how to ensure these stations would encourage rather than hinder bike access. After the consultation process private contractual arrangements for construction were made. At this point, changes were made without consultation and this major missing link was introduced. The City is aware of this mistake, and is supposed to come up with a fix: CfSC will be following any updates. Read our recent guest blog post by CfSC member Eric Darwin for more information on how this came about in spite of advocacy efforts.
Still determined to provide as much input as we can on how to ensure safe cycling access to LRT stations, in August CfSC members began attending and feeding into Stage 2 LRT station design consultations and we have been asked to join a working group on cycling connectivity.
Highlights from recent activities
Meetings with Key Staff at the City and in Federal MP Catherine McKenna’s Office
Keeping up with key staffers is key to ensuring opportunities to feed in on plans and policies that ensure safe cycling: in August, we met with the City of Ottawa’s new General Manager of Transportation Services, John Manconi, and had the chance to discuss issues like implementation of the complete streets policy, cycling connectivity with Stage 2 LRT stations, and the Booth Street Bridge. Watch our Facebook page for updates on Booth Street...
We also met with Catherine McKenna’s office to talk about a proposed National Cycling Strategy, and the possibility of collaborating on a special Bike Sunday event in May 2017. Stay tuned!
Ride with Provincial MPP Yasir Naqvi in Ottawa Centre
On August 9th, we had the pleasure of accompanying Ottawa Centre MPP Yasir Naqvi on a bike ride along with Share the Road Canada. It was a great chance to discuss good examples of infrastructure as well as the importance of addressing some missing links in the riding. We are grateful that Naqvi is supportive of improving bike infrastructure and look forward to continue providing advice and feedback on possible improvements.
Another Successful Year of RBC Bluesfest Bike Parking
This year in addition to parking thousands of bikes, on July 15th extra CfSC volunteers were out to raise awareness of our work to our many happy customers. Thanks to all those who helped out, parked their bikes, and signed up as new members!
Join us, and help spread the word!
Not a member yet? Join us for as little as $10 per year and help amplify our voice promoting cycling as a safe, fun, and environmentally friendly form of transportation.
Please share this newsletter with your friends and encourage them to do the same!
Citizens for Safe Cycling
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