Another empty bike lane - cyclists are no-show on Burrard Bridge

Despite all the money poured by Vision Mayor Robertson and all the hype feverishly pitched by Vision Councillor Meggs there are no increases in cycling volumes on high profile bike routes.

Review of the City of Vancouver Downtown Separated Bicycle Lanes Status Report released this July shows that cycling volumes on most established separated bike routes are flat to declining.
source: City of Vancouver,  Downtown Separated Bicycle Lanes Status Report, Summer 2011, Appendix A

Province provides funding for VPD traffic enforcement

Financial mismanagement of Vision City Hall was on full display last week when its police force - the Vancouver Police Department - had to be subsidized by Provincial Government so the VPD can carry out traffic enforcement.

Tailgating TransLink

TransLink executives just released their “Cycling for Everyone” plan.  As part of that plan they promote dangerous tailgating as a method to improve space efficiency.  The document signed by the TransLink CEO – Ian Jarvis, states that cyclists can ride so close to each other that they are separated by only half a second

 Any TransLink bus driver knows that following closer that 2 seconds behind is not safe.  At least 2 seconds are needed to react to a traffic situation.  Fortunately for commuters, executives in charge of TransLink are not driving our buses.  Unfortunately for the taxpayers TransLink executives waste our tax dollars promoting unsafe riding practices.

Disappearing Cyclists - City reports fewer cyclists on a popular bike route

Ontario Bike Route is a popular bike route in Vancouver running north/south through the heart of the City.  Comparing spring and summer months of 2009 and 2010 shows a 15% decline in cycling along that cycling route.  

In 5 out of six months there was a reduction in cycling.  Spring months show double-digit drops in cycling exceeding 30% in April of 2010 when compared to 2009.

ICBC reports more injuries after bike lanes were installed.

Local media brings to light an ICBC report showing that Vancouver commuters – travelling by bus, in a taxi, carrying deliveries or in private cars - are getting injured more frequently after segregated bike lanes were introduced.  Over the four year period before bike lanes were installed, there were nearly 150 accidents a year resulting in about 50 casualties a year.  Since the bike lanes were installed, more than 60 commuters are injured every year.  This represents a 31% and a 20% increase in accident casualties in 2009 and 2010 respectively

Free education – Ask and you will be answered

Vision Councilors Heather Deal and Andrea Reimer are reported to oppose investigating injuries on the Burrard Bridge
Coun. Deal and Reimer are using the “enormous” cost of such a study as an excuse for ignoring the safety of commuters.
In fact, all it takes to find out about injuries to Vancouver commuters on the Burrard Bridge is to ask ICBC - ICBC provides the data free of charge

No safety behind the wall - separated bike lanes are more dangerous

Research carried out over the years and throughout the world comes back with a simple observation – separated bike lanes are not safer, especially at intersections.

In fact, City of Helsinki advises that "two-way cycle paths [separated bike lanes] in particular should be avoided in an urban street network.”

Locally, Vision Mayor Robertson flanked by his sidekick Vision Councillor Meggs can be heard ad nauseam pushing their opinions that placing cyclists behind fixed, solid barriers is safer.  They invite cycling lobbyists to their Council Meetings who speak of their SUBJECTIVE PERCEPTIONS of feeling safer when cycling on a separated bike lane.
Feelings and wishful thinking aside, the OBJECTIVE FACTS are clear – separated bike lanes do not make anyone safer.  Not cyclists, not pedestrians, not motorized commuters or business traffic.