Rendering of a proposed bike lane along Front Street. (City of Nanaimo)

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: Readers weigh in on Front Street bike lane proposal

Readers offer their views on plan, which would see waterfront street reduced to two lanes

To the editor,

Re: Council won’t OK Front Street bikeway right now, wants further consultation, Oct. 24.

I would like to commend the city councillors and staff that are working to create the downtown bikeway project. These people know a move in the right direction when they see one.

I appreciate that the city is following its own transportation master plan on this issue; as stated in the plan, “Many residents have indicated that they would consider cycling more if the quality of bicycle facilities were improved and the cycling network was expanded to serve more destinations such as downtown and Vancouver Island University.”

In addition, the transportation plan says that “the city is committed to developing a safe and attractive bicycle network that will make cycling in Nanaimo a more viable and attractive transportation option.”

To the progressive staff and councillors who are working to live up to this commitment, my sincere gratitude. Your work in reducing traffic congestion, increasing the health of Nanaimo residents, and living up to the responsibilities of government to heed its own transportation master plan while addressing the climate emergency, is admirable.

Graham Shuley, Nanaimo

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

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

To the editor,

Re: Council won’t OK Front Street bikeway right now, wants further consultation, Oct. 24.

I suppose council’s attempts to encourage the use of bicycles is praiseworthy in some ways, however the idea of spending piles of money on a project without a guaranteed payoff has rightfully given them pause.

I spend a fair amount of time out and about in this city, sometimes driving, sometimes walking and quite frankly I see comparatively few cyclists. Perhaps a few more lately with the introduction of electric-assisted pedalling, but still not that many. The optimistic idea of “build it and they will come” only reaches a satisfactory conclusion in movies; such a positive outcome could well be somewhat doubtful in real life.

Too many of the existing bike lanes within city limits start nowhere in particular, run for a few hundred metres and then fizzle out, forcing cyclists to rejoin traffic willy-nilly. Their existence could actually be construed as being more dangerous than not being there in the first place. These lanes have been shoehorned into roads that were never intended to include them so the idea of actually designing bike lanes from virtual scratch is a good one, however will they ever be justified by volume usage? My guess is that they will not.

Garry Bradford, Nanaimo

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Make Front Street safe and appealing with modern thinking

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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