It's cramped going along Stamp Avenue in Port Alberni for bicycle commuter Sandra Innes Gentleman on  Monday afternoon. Bike lanes along main arteries such as these are in order

It's cramped going along Stamp Avenue in Port Alberni for bicycle commuter Sandra Innes Gentleman on Monday afternoon. Bike lanes along main arteries such as these are in order

City mulls bike lane pitch

Adding bike lanes to Alberni’s road will encourage people to get out of their cars, get them on bicycles and keep them safe while riding

Adding bike lanes to Port Alberni’s road network will encourage people to get out of their cars, get them on bicycles and keep them safe while doing it, a local cycling advocate said.

City councillors voted to receive a letter from Sandra Innes-Gentleman that advocates for designated bike lanes to the city’s main arterial roads.

“Safety of riding on the roads/highways around the Alberni Valley can be an issue,” said Innes-Gentleman.

Some riders in town commute to work five times per week while Innes-Gentleman commutes once per week, she said. She commutes from South Port along Third Avenue, Stamp Avenue and across Johnston Road.

There are no designated bike lanes along the Alberni Valley’s main arterial routes and this makes for a challenging commute, said Innes Gentleman, who added that she’s had a close call or two.

There is bare road on the Catalyst side of the road and a sidewalk across the street. “I don’t want to use the sidewalk because it’s meant for pedestrians,” she said.

She rides with traffic along the roads and obeys traffic laws. “But you feels exposed and vulnerable when traffic goes by right beside you,” she said.

Designated bike lanes should be added to arteries such as Third and Stamp Avenues, lower Redford Street, Roger Street and Johnston Road, she said. The roads are wide enough to conceptualize the idea and adding the lanes could be cost efficient, she added.

Other communities such as Victoria, where Innes-Gentleman lived previously, employ bike lanes successfully, often tying them to trail networks, she said.

The city isn’t ready for cycling lanes and they are a lower priority than road repairs, Coun. Hira Chopra said.

“I don’t think we need it and it should be in the back burner,” Chopra said.

The city met with a cycling group a few years ago and established a designated cycling lane along the Redford Street extension, city engineer Guy Cicon said. “But there is no bike lane master plan,” he said.

Work involved in creating such lanes would include widening roads if need be or re-proportioning existing roads, Cicon said. “It’s more than just painting,” he said.

If the city is to proceed with new bike lanes then it’s critical that people understand how they work with regards to regular traffic, particularly at junctions such as intersections where cyclists and cars converge, Cicon said.

There would be benefit to linking bike lanes with the city’s walking trail network, he added.

reporter@albernivalleynews.com

Twitter.com/AlberniNews

What do you think? Give us your comments by e-mail. Be sure to spell out your first and last names.

Just Posted

AW Neill Elementary School in Port Alberni. (NEWS FILE PHOTO)
SD70 chooses new name for AW Neill School in Port Alberni

New name honours Nuu-chah-nulth Peoples’ connection to region

Douglas Holmes, current Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District chief administrative officer, is set to take on that position at the Regional District of Nanaimo come late August. (Submitted photo)
Regional District of Nanaimo’s next CAO keen to work on building partnerships

Douglas Holmes to take over top administrator role with RDN this summer

Ron MacDonald fields questions at a news conference in Halifax on Sept. 27, 2011. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan
Finding ‘comfortable’ indigenous monitor tough task in Tofino-area shooting death

Julian Jones case hampered by difficulty finding a civilian comfortable with privacy protocols

Port Alberni RCMP officer in command Insp. Eric Rochette presents longtime community policing volunteer Louie Aumair with a OIC appreciation certificate. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)
Port Alberni RCMP honour longtime volunteer

First responders receive support from broader community

The Dock+ is located on Harbour Road in Port Alberni. (SUSAN QUINN / Alberni Valley News)
PROGRESS 2021: Port Alberni’s food hub still growing a year later

The Dock hopes to open a retail store on Alberni’s busy waterfront

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Flowers and cards are left at a makeshift memorial at a monument outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School to honour the 215 children whose remains are believed to have been discovered buried near the city in Kamloops, B.C., on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Pick a Sunday:’ Indigenous leaders ask Catholics to stay home, push for apology

Indigenous leaders are calling on Catholics to stand in solidarity with residential school survivors by not attending church services

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement June 1. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

The Queen Victoria statue at the B.C. legislature was splattered with what looks like red paint on Friday. (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)
Queen Victoria statue at B.C. legislature vandalized Friday

Statue splattered with red paint by old growth forest proponents

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Most Read