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Old 05-07-09, 05:57 PM   #1
closetbiker
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6 months 1 lane Burrard Bridge

They went with option3, west lane, east sidewalk. Pedestrians west sidewalk only.

http://www.vancouversun.com/Cyclists...086/story.html

VANCOUVER - Cyclists will have sole access to one lane and one sidewalk on the Burrard Street Bridge on a trial basis, Vancouver city council decided Thursday.

The bridge's west curbside lane and east sidewalk will be designated for bicycles. All pedestrians will be rerouted to the west sidewalk.

The trial will begin on mid-to-late June. Council has not specified an end date.

"I'm so proud we are going ahead with this trial," said Coun. Heather Deal.

City hall has been studying options for updating the bridge for more than a decade. One of the most expensive plans was to widen the 2.6-metre sidewalks at a price tag of $63 million.

The bridge carries more than 70,000 vehicles daily and up to 9,000 people hourly during peak times. Ten per cent of those people are pedestrians or cyclists.

A report, which includes three options, was presented this week to city council. The report called for either both curb lanes, or the southbound curb lane only, to be separated from vehicular traffic with physical barriers. Various options for sidewalk traffic were also included.

The cost of closing two lanes is $1.45 million, while a one-lane closure would cost $1.3 million, according to the city report.

More to come...

Copyright (c) The Vancouver Sun
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Old 05-11-09, 01:41 PM   #2
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This is a good compromise and will help get people on bikes across that bridge. The setup of sharing a sidewalk with pedestrians was not great and I could see how new cyclists would be nervous with peds on the right and fast moving traffic on the left.
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Old 05-11-09, 03:24 PM   #3
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An incident on a bridge in Portland re-sparked a similar discussion recently on their routing methods.

http://bikeportland.org/2009/05/11/c...-in-the-works/

Ultimately I suppose usage will determine whether or not the trial here continues. Since this route isn't part of my regular ride, I can't really comment, other than to say that superficially I like the idea of any plan to encourage more pedestrian/cyclist traffic downtown and less vehicle traffic.
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Old 05-12-09, 04:11 PM   #4
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Didn't work last time it was tried, I don't think its going to fly this time around either. The concept of "Share The Road" isn't working for most drivers. I see it all the time, I ride a tad trike and for the most part drivers are simply curious, but there are those who view me/us with contempt. And then there's those who simply think only of themselves, and are obivious to the rest of us. I was dismayed at the reaction of some of the pedestrians to the plan too. I think, there is always going to be this conflict with drivers on our city roads. Out of the city it's a little better, but there are those who still don't get it. When I'm out riding it's all about the ride and I'm very careful (nature of the beast). There's so much rush in our lives that it overwhelms some I think, anything slowing them down is a personal slight. In my case, when its a friendly honk, I wave and when that honk is angry (you know what I mean) I wave nicely. It's all that I can do.......Thought I'd throw in some pics of the trike on more gentler roads.
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Old 05-23-09, 12:42 PM   #5
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http://www.straight.com/article-2223...ted-lane-trial

City of Vancouver's bicycle advisory committee not consulted on Burrard Bridge lane trial
By Matthew Burrows

A member of the City of Vancouver’s bicycle advisory committee has claimed that she and her colleagues were not consulted on the one-lane reallocation trial starting on the Burrard Bridge in mid June.

Kari Hewett told the Straight that the committee passed a resolution at its March 18 meeting in support of a two-lane trial. At city council’s transportation and traffic committee meeting on May 5, the overwhelming majority of speakers favoured the same option, called A1. However, council voted 8–2 on May 7 in favour of the second of two one-lane options presented by engineering staff (A3), with COPE councillors David Cadman and Ellen Woodsworth opposed.

This means the southbound curb lane of the bridge will be used by cyclists during the trial, while northbound cyclists will use the east sidewalk. Pedestrians will have sole use of the west sidewalk.

“I felt awkward, and I think the committee felt awkward,” Hewett said by phone. “In trying to review the options in front of us, the only one we’d seen was A1, which we all had thought was a very good one, because A2 and A3 we didn’t see any schematics on, really. We didn’t have a chance to discuss it with staff.”

Hewett said that a motion moved by Cadman at a transportation and traffic committee meeting on October 18, 2005, specified that “the Bicycle Advisory Committee be consulted on any new development on existing or proposed bicycle routes”.

Speaking via cellphone from the U.S. Capitol, Cadman called the implications of Hewett’s claim “problematic”.

“Council is supposed to take it to the committee,” Cadman told the Straight. “Then the committee has to mobilize itself and come and speak on something, and if you don’t have that input, then what’s the point of having an advisory committee? And if you have flawed advice, based on one-third [of] the motion, then what’s the basis of taking the consultation to them?”

Hewett said that the one-lane trial is also a poor deal for pedestrians, who have no civic advisory committee that speaks for them.

Coun. Geoff Meggs, council’s liaison to the bicycle committee, told the Straight he did not have an explanation for Hewett’s claim.

“I don’t know the answer, really,” Meggs said. “I think there was a staff discussion earlier on with them, that I was present for, that talked about the two-lane option. But subsequently the staff report added in the other two, and I think it was pretty clear from day one that the bicycle advisory committee preferred a two-lane option, for reasons that they make crystal clear.”
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Old 07-11-09, 01:35 PM   #6
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It's nice to see Pete McMartin of The Sun wrote a supportive piece on the bridge trial after so many bad peices being written

http://www.vancouversun.com/travel/C...068/story.html

Column: Chaos! Mayhem! The End of The World As We Know It! Would That Be Such A Bad Thing?



VANCOUVER - At 7:32 a.m. on a Friday morning, Ground Zero of the city’s present indignant wrath is in mid-rush hour.

At the crest of the Burrard Bridge’s sidewalk, where I stand, the cars roar by, each and every one of them going over the speed limit. To view them from the perspective of a pedestrian is to be struck by a couple of things. One is the sense of a car’s mass, which is frightening; the other is the sense of one’s own vulnerability in relation to it, which is even more frightening. The cars hurtle.

This, too: Almost every car contains only a driver. Car commuters (of which I am often one) may prefer not to see it in such terms, but the power and sense of entitlement a car confers is a political act, especially in an age of global warming, where every car trip is an incremental crime against nature.

This is the commuter’s secret thrill — the speed and ease and selfishness of a car — because necessity very often has little to do with it.

Most people drive not because they must, since there are other ways to get around, but because they want to. The bridge doesn’t just carry traffic, it carries addicts.

So, when the city announced it was going to close one of the bridge’s six lanes for bicycle traffic as an experiment, it wasn’t surprising that the reaction sounded much like a junkie facing withdrawal. There were howls. There were predictions of traffic chaos. There were threats of road rage.

“People take their transportation very personally,” said Jerry Dobrovolny, assistant city engineer for transportation. “Often, we find it’s not even a rational discussion we can have with people.”

Rational? To a suburban commuter such as myself, the complaints and fretting over traffic jams on the Burrard seem not only irrational, but laughable, compared to the truly monumental backups suburbanites face daily at bottlenecks like the Port Mann Bridge and the George Massey Tunnel.

Those complaints seem even more lame considering the Burrard Bridge’s physical situation. Generally, Dobrovolny said, the bridge services people coming to or coming from the west side. Not only is the west side well served by transit, which is not the case in the suburbs, it is a quick commute to the downtown core. It also enjoys the luxury of being served by more than one entry point. The underused Granville Street Bridge is a whole two blocks away. Or is a two-block detour too much of an imposition on west-siders?

I would like to think there is an inevitability to all this, that the lane closure is part of a better, greener future, though I know better. But road rededication for bike lanes and pedestrian traffic is happening all over the world, and in cities much larger than Vancouver.

New York recently closed Broadway to car traffic in the Times Square area.

The Bloor Street Viaduct in Toronto lost a traffic lane to two bike lanes years ago, which city motorists adjusted to, and city council there just approved the rededication of a car lane to a bike lane down Jarvis Street, a main downtown artery.

Portland has dedicated bike lanes on several of its bridges. Paris, Copenhagen, Amsterdam, Bogota, Berlin, all have dedicated lanes for bicyclists. In all those cities, bike traffic is robust.

On Friday morning, there was a steady stream of bicyclists going north over the bridge, though they had to share the small eight-foot-wide sidewalk with pedestrians. It’s a stupid arrangement: collisions are common on it, and the possibility of falling onto the roadway ever-present.

Lynn Brockington, who looked to be around my age, was biking to work in West Vancouver, and tried, she said, to do it two or three times a week. Donna Green was cycling to work downtown — it took her 20 minutes, as fast as if she drove it, she said — and when asked what she would say to motorists angry with the lane closure, she said: “I always say it isn’t a God-given right to drive. So it takes them three more minutes to get to work. Too bad.”

Lesley Stokes said she often tried to get her friends to bike over the bridge, but they wouldn’t because they felt it was too dangerous. Perhaps the new lane would change that, she said.

And Fiona McQuillan, who usually rides but was walking to work with her boyfriend, Jens Onneken, said:

“I would say that with the bike lane this city is making real positive change, and hopefully the city will start making informed infrastructure changes.”

Hopefully, but Vancouver, having come to that bridge, may not be ready to cross it.

pmcmartin@vancouversun.com

604-605-2905
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Old 07-11-09, 09:17 PM   #7
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I just read this article. It's too bad that I wasn't still in Vancouver to utilize the lanes, but I hope to be back there soon enough to see them actually paint the bike lane lines on the bridge.

The comment section was disturbing, but expected.

To shift people's paradigms, there is obviously going to be fierce resistance, but I really hope that this works. And by that, I mean getting people out of their cars, and riding their bikes or taking transit.
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Old 07-12-09, 08:41 AM   #8
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I think there's been so much discussion of this, that about a week or two after the lane opens, it's going to be old hat, everybody will have adjusted their habits, and it'll be no big thing.

At least that's what I hope for.

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Old 07-12-09, 07:22 PM   #9
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Summer holidays. Low traffic. Come Sept. this will heat up. Oh well. I don't use this bridge anyways. Personally I rather the city to build us a dedicated bridge so that bike-muters don't have to go up and down the gradient.
I wonder given one less lane for automobiles, that may lead to traffic backlog. Which means more idling --> spewing CO and other toxic goodies in the vicinity. And who are the ones who will be huffing and puffing up to the bridge? Yup. Cyclists and Pedestrians. Smart thinking. I'm glad I don't bike through there on my commute.

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Old 07-13-09, 09:58 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by closetbiker View Post
I think there's been so much discussion of this, that about a week or two after the lane opens, it's going to be old hat, everybody will have adjusted their habits, and it'll be no big thing.

At least that's what I hope for.

In this I hope you are correct.
I am optimistic that this will be the actual "affect".
Going on the MOMENTUM picnic ride tonight to show support for the project: After having been to Portland for a vacation I am driven to see Vancouver continue to improve it's infrastructure.
We are still in need of more...
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Old 07-18-09, 10:35 AM   #11
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Saw this in The Sun


Last edited by closetbiker; 07-23-09 at 08:44 AM.
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Old 07-23-09, 08:46 AM   #12
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I like the, "we're getting another lane next week" best
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Old 07-23-09, 08:54 PM   #13
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I'll have to ride the bridge when I come up in August.
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Old 07-24-09, 11:03 AM   #14
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As regarding the new bike lane, in my opinion the lane appears wide enough depending on situation of course for faster riders to pass slower riders. However it would be nice if fellows cyclists doing so would annouce themselves before squeezing by in some cases. For less experienced riders it can be quite the fright be passed so close and at a faster pace.
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