A rendering of a two-way cycle track on Front Street. (City of Nanaimo image)

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Bike lanes can wait in these times

City council needs to overhaul its priorities, says letter writer

To the editor,

Re: City going ahead with Front Street cycle lanes, April 29.

Council’s recent approval of a $400,000 traffic/bike land project was a disturbing report.

There is a growing population in this neighbourhood who teeter on the brink, having nowhere to go. Pandemic aside, prospects of long-term shelter for these individuals are bleak. Wracked by addiction and mental health issues, it’s a struggle to even scratch out one meal. For most, a coffee, sandwich, maybe a cup of soup is a good day. Certainly much support has been provided to these individuals, but there is so much more assistance required. It is disturbing to me that a healthy chunk of this cash is not being re-allocated to at least backstop the tattered social safety net. Bike lanes can wait; lives are at stake.

One final thought: in terms of attitude and priorities, this council needs an overhaul.

Herb Robinson, Nanaimo

READ ALSO: Nanaimo council won’t OK Front Street bike lanes right now

READ ALSO: City of Nanaimo looking at closing two lanes of Front Street, adding bike lanes

To the editor,

Re: City going ahead with Front Street cycle lanes, April 29.

I’m of two minds regarding this project – no, not really. It is obviously desirable to encourage the use of bicycles by providing enhanced facilities, however, I would have thought that Front Street was not really a candidate for such treatment. After all, where does it actually go? Cycle lanes that enable cyclists to actually travel to a destination are obviously desirable, but to provide them with the ability to scoot around downtown so that politicians can demonstrate how ‘forward thinking’ they are hardly fits the bill. Providing cycle lanes on roads that were never designed for such use and in consequence minimizing the use for which they were actually designed is analogous to trying to put toothpaste back in the tube.

All over the city one can see the lamentable attempts to encourage the use of bicycles. All those cycling lanes that last for a few hundred metres before dangerously spitting the poor riders back out into normal traffic are under-utilized and one can quite easily understand why. Sorry city hall, I cannot believe for one moment that you cannot find a better use for $400,000 of our money.

Garry Bradford, Nanaimo

The views and opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are those of the writer and do not reflect the views of Black Press or the Nanaimo News Bulletin. If you have a different view, we encourage you to write to us or contribute to the discussion below.

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