Monday, August 31, 2015
The Toronto Centre for Active Transportation, a project of the registered charity Clean Air Partnership, will hold its 8th annual Complete Streets Forum taking place on October 1st, 2015 at Hart House on the St. George campus of the University of Toronto. Read more.
Over the last few weeks, communities in the Bow River Valley have seen dozens of kilometres’ worth of dedicated bike lanes, parking stalls and maintenance stations installed throughout the region, including in Canmore and Banff. According to municipal officials, it’s all about encouraging a more active plan of transportation — and one of the most beautiful places in the country is a good place to embrace such a strategy. Read more.
Edmontonians took to the streets Friday—specifically Whyte Avenue—to protest what they call a shocking trend of pedestrian and cyclist collisions in the area. Read more.
Some bicycle enthusiasts want Alberta to introduce what’s often called the Idaho stop, named for the American state that began allowing bike riders to treat stop signs as yields in 1982. Read more.
Sunday, August 30, 2015
A city councillor is asking the city to repair a fence blocking access to the abandoned Prince of Wales rail bridge and to put up bigger no-trespassing signs after two recent swarmings. Read more.
To walk or to run: which gives you a better bang for your buck? For the average Canadian considering kicking off a new exercise routine, it's not as obvious, says Jeff Woods, a long-time personal trainer and fitness lifestyle commentator on the Canadian Learning Channel. Read more.
Some time in the last year, the world's second-largest country crossed a tipping point in public consciousness. Though there's a steady drumbeat of discussion from across the U.S., Australia and the U.K., in the last six months we've watched in awe as a wave of protected bike lane chatter has been pouring out of every major English-speaking city in Canada: Victoria, Edmonton, Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Hamilton, Halifax, Toronto, Calgary, Vancouver. Read more.
Recent innovations in urban transportation in the United States have consisted of resident-led efforts to create more ways of moving around the city. Rather than the adoption
of new technology, these advances have centered on reintroducing human vitality into streets that have been lost to cars for decades. Our analysis of the human factors
behind implementing small-scale change in a wholesale way shows that engagement from three areas of society is required for a city to innovate. Read more.
Urban sprawl costs the American economy more than US$1 trillion annually, according to a new study by the New Climate Economy. These costs include greater spending on infrastructure, public service delivery and transportation. Read more.
Richard Florida’s sobering take from the new Census report on American commuting habits is that the vast majority of the country still drives to work. The reminder is a crucial one for transit advocates, local officials, and city residents engaged in the pursuit of balance. But it’s also worth taking a closer look at how Americans get to work in the cities where they rely on driving the least. Read more.
Years after Bixi and its competitors set up shop in Canada, another bike-sharing system that some describe as the Airbnb of cycling is making inroads in the country. Spinlister allows people to list their unused bicycles and search for available ones in a specific area. Read more.
In recent weeks, dozens of kilometres of dedicated bike lanes, parking stalls and maintenance stations have been installed throughout the Bow Valley. Read more.
There’s no better way to understand cycling in the suburbs than hopping in the saddle. That’s the idea behind a 20-kilometre bike tour coming to Scarborough Sept. 30. “We want them to feel the nuances on the routes, the speed, the noise,” said Marvin Macaraig, project coordinator for Scarborough Cycles and the tour’s leader. Read more.
More than a year after youth from the Crown Point neighbourhood pitched the city on building a BMX-style track in Gage Park's southwestern corner, the hilly course formally opened Saturday. The project had faced opposition from the Friends of Gage Park association, but Saturday's opening was entirely celebratory. Read more.
Friday, August 28, 2015
There are many reasons e-bikes are in vogue – they're fast, colourful, relatively inexpensive and don't require a driver's license or insurance to drive. But St. Thomas Police want the public to know the trendy rides don't come without rules, especially since they're becoming more common on city streets. Read more.
An online photo blog is trying to raise awareness about the lack of cycling infrastructure in Sudbury. This year, Matt Alexander created Invisible Bike Lanes of Sudbury — a blog that shows cyclists with their bikes removed from the picture with Photoshop software. Read more.
Wednesday, August 26, 2015
In challenging the Times Square pedestrian plaza, New York City leaders are showing a profound misunderstanding about the impact of public space. Read more.
In one of those so-normal-it's-newsworthy moments, Princess Catharina-Amalia of the Netherlands posed for a first day of school picture in her driveway, wearing jeans and pink sneakers. Read more.
In May, 2015 over 120 Saskatonians participated in our second Question of the Month. Here’s a snap shot of what we heard. Read more.
The Town’s Active Transportation Committee, in partnership with Niagara Region, is hosting a workshop to identify ways of making our town more walkable and easier for cyclists: September 8, 2015. Read more.
Danny Kennedy wants to transform Northern Ireland into a "cycling society" where 40% of all journeys under a mile would be cycled by 2040. He said: "My vision is that Northern Ireland will be a community where people have the freedom and confidence to travel by bicycle for everyday journeys." Read more.
Monday, August 24, 2015
Residents in Amherstburg and Essex will soon see additional paved shoulders in their communities — part of the County Wide Active Transportation System. Read more.
The 475 km Greenbelt Route was developed by the Waterfront Regeneration Trust. The new route combined with the Waterfront Trail form a 1,000 km signed and mapped cycling loop along the waterfront and through Ontario’s protected Greenbelt. Read more.
Huntsville is the first and currently only municipality to receive money through district’s active transportation strategy. Read more.
A road diet is a great way for cities to reclaim some of the excess street space they’ve dedicated to cars—generally preserving traffic flows while improving safety and expanding mobility to other modes. Read more.
Sunday, August 23, 2015
The permissible right on red and straight across at a T-junction for cyclists has been law in the Netherlands since 1991 but only, as in Paris, where a sign permits it. Parisian Deputy Mayor, Christophe Najdoski, revealed the plans in April to improve cycle journey times and safety for those travelling by bike. Read more.
Los Angeles city leaders have endorsed a sweeping policy that would rework some of the city’s mightiest boulevards, adding more lanes for buses and bikes and, in some places, leaving fewer for cars. The goal is to improve safety for cyclists and pedestrians while also luring more people out of their cars. Read more.
"In the UK we have something of a fixation on cycling for exercise, rather than as a means of transport," he told The Telegraph. "But we will get rid of the sweat and lycra and it will catch on. Read more.
Guelph is making progress on its cycling master plan. It's adding significant infrastructure to make streets more biker-friendly, a city official says. And it's looking for new opportunities to add more cycling amenities. Read more.
Saturday, August 22, 2015
The city has rolled out three bike-repair stations at Riverside Park, McArthur Island and Kenna Cartwright Park. The stations include a bike pump, wrenches, tire levers and other tools, all of which retract into the bike station when not in use. Read more.
To understand how we got to a situation where floating bus stops seem like a good idea, virtually unopposed by organisations representing people with sight loss, we have to wind the clock back to the turn of this century. At that time, there was a growing awareness amongst street designers that a narrow focus on traffic engineering was destroying high streets, creating unpleasant environments where pedestrians were penned in behind guardrail and vehicles ruled. Read more.
The region's approval of segregated bike lanes for several road projects since 2014 has the public asking for more. Discussing planned road improvements for University Avenue from Keats Way to Erb Street last week politicians were asked to install segregated lanes instead of the on-street bike lanes proposed. Coun. Sean Strickland said the region needs a comprehensive plan to deal with the requests, which he suggested will come to politicians more and more often. Read more.
The Forks has unveiled its plan to convert the two-lane road that runs through the area into one lane for cars, a raised bike lane and a sidewalk on either side, connecting Winnipeg's Osborne Village to St. Boniface. Read more.
Many who ride bikes also drive, and everybody — no matter how they travel — is a pedestrian at some point each trip. Advocating for bicycle-specific infrastructure respects the rights of people on foot and those using mobility aids to travel comfortably and safely as well. The push for better on-road bicycle infrastructure takes into account that sidewalks are designed primarily for pedestrians and are ill-suited to bicycle traffic for several reasons. Read more.
Friday, August 21, 2015
Initiate a conversation about cycling in Kampala and it will probably go one of two ways. People either assume you’re talking about boda bodas, the motorbike taxis that snake dangerously through the city’s arteries. Or, understanding you mean a pushbike, they’ll laugh dismissively at the possibility of tackling Uganda’s capital on two wheels. Read more.
This year’s Forum aims to share, inspire and motivate learning on the full life-cycle of developing a Complete Street: from idea, to policy, through to implementation and evaluation. Our speakers, hailing from across North America, and as far away as the Netherlands, will address one of the 2015 Complete Streets Forum’s themes: “Plan it,” “Build it” and “Ensuring They Will Come.” Read more.
Monday, August 10, 2015
It’s been more than seven years since Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett put his entire city on a diet and invested in wider sidewalks, better bike routes, and a larger park to encourage fitness. For politicians and urbanists alike, the connection between the shape of our cities and the shape of our bodies is clear. Those of us who live in sprawling suburbs and commute to work by car are less likely to be healthy, while those of us who live in dense urban neighborhoods end up healthier because we’re more likely to bike or walk to work. Read more.
It stretches around 60 kilometres and takes cyclists from Pictou to East Mountain through a variety of riding conditions, including a short, hard surfaced trail segment, paved shoulder bike route, and a shared lane on a quiet, secondary highway. Read more.
There has been a flurry of letters to the editor and comments in the social media demanding bike lanes on a critical stretch of Speedvale Avenue between Woolwich Street and Manhattan Court. This organized and vocal group of bike enthusiasts is a minority of people who prefer a form of what they describe as "active transportation." Translated: you either walk to where you are going or ride a bike. Read more.
Ciclovias, also known as Open Street events, are opening up cities to people around the globe. These events attract thousands – even millions – of people and demonstrate what a truly livable city can look like. By closing major routes to motorized vehicles, these events allow residents and visitors to experience cities in active and vibrant ways. Whether you choose to bike, inline skate, walk, or simply sit and lounge, there is something for everyone. Read more.
Reid Ewing, a planning scholar at the University of Utah and lead author on the New York City paper, helped a slew of graduate students apply this question to Salt Lake City, Utah. Salt Lake is “arguably a more typical of the auto-dependent United States as compared with NYC,” the researchers write in a paper published last month in the Journal of Urban Design. Read more.
The unsticking of the urban roads is one of the side effects of autonomous cars that will, in turn, change the landscape of cities—essentially eliminating one of the enduring symbols of urban life, the traffic jam full of honking cars and fuming passengers. It will also redefine how we use land in the city, unleashing trillions of dollars of real estate to be used for more than storing cars. Read more.
While voting for their report on the White Paper on Transport, the members of the Committee on Transport and Tourism decided that an EU Roadmap for Cycling would be an apt instrument to further EU transport policy objectives. Read more.
Some athletes and fitness enthusiasts might scoff at walkers. It’s not really a workout, they might say, if you don’t end up gasping for breath and dripping with sweat. But consider for a moment what really makes a perfect form of exercise. It’s hard to say. Is it the most challenging workout? The one that helps you live longest? Or perhaps, the one that gets the most people to exercise? Read more.
Last year, the Old Strathcona Business Association and the City of Edmonton tested the waters to see how people would react to making a portion of the popular avenue car-free on some of the busiest pedestrian nights of the year. At the time, when the city asked for public opinion via a survey, 57 per cent of 2,040 responses highly supported the idea, 20 per cent said the idea was great in theory but more information is needed, six per cent said perhaps, and 17 per cent said no. Read more.
Friday, August 7, 2015
Four shortlisted designs have been unveiled for another new bridge across the Thames in London – thought to be the first in a major city centre to incorporate the needs of pedestrians and cyclists. Read more.
Mark your calendars because next September 12-15, 2016 Pro Walk/Pro Bike/Pro Place will convene in one of the world’s most livable cities. Vancouver is internationally recognized and envied for its high quality of life, its all ages and abilities active transportation system, its citizen engagement and, of course, its sublime natural beauty. Read more.
Vancouver is upgrading some well-travelled bike routes throughout the city as part of a plan to reduce collisions and making cycling smoother. Read more.
In an active transportation audit, a group of volunteers with a range of physical abilities and age walk around their community on a predetermined route to identify obstacles to walking, biking, and wheelchair use. Read more.
Speedvale Avenue will not go on a road diet. In fact, after a long debate at Monday's council meeting, the decision was to plump it up to four standard-width lanes to accommodate greater vehicular traffic, including buses and emergency vehicles. But the city's engineers could not squeeze enough space for bicycle lanes on Speedvale between Riverview Drive and Manhattan Court. Read more.
Citi Bike still isn’t perfect. Over the course of 15 test rides and 45 miles of biking, I encountered four docking snafus, a sticky gear shifter and one flat tire. But overall, the new Citi Bike experience is like cruising on a different planet: a magical world where a bright blue bike waits on every third street corner to provide fun, convenient transport—assuming you don’t get clipped by a cab. Read more.
Alternately called the “holy grail” of roads projects by supporters or “fiscal suicide” by detractors, the city's share will be about $26.7 million. Should it proceed, the extension will provide a third east-west link in Greater Sudbury, along with The Kingsway and Lasalle Boulevard. Unlike those routes, however, it will bypass downtown and other busy roadways, and get heavy ore trucks off the city's main thoroughfares. Read more.
A record number of cyclists pedaled their way through Vancouver's separated bike lanes in June, helping the city reach its goal of having 50 per cent of all trips made by foot, bicycle or public transit. Read more.
Removal of the walking and cycling lanes of the MacDonald Bridge in Halifax is underway as part of the Big Lift deck replacement project. The careful dismantling of the bridge lanes began Wednesday night and will take two to three weeks for more than 300 panels to be removed. Read more.
While long distance walking is a novelty for many Americans, it has long been popular in Europe—miles of established paths criss-cross the continent, and in England they are often clearly marked and cared for. If a path unravels across a farm, the farmer is the caretaker of that expanse. Read more.
Port Alberni is on the list of Vancouver Island communities to benefit from a Bike BC grant, funding set to allow one kilometre of additional three-metrewide paths through the ravine that bisects the city. Other municipalities to benefit from the biking grants include Langford, Saanich, Victoria and the Cowichan Valley Regional District, which, along with the province's capital, is set to receive $440,000. Read more.
A gender gap exists in urban cycling, and we need to do something about it. If you observe cyclists locally, you're more likely to spot some middle-aged white dude soft-pedalling through traffic than a lass bunny-hopping over a curb. Female bicyclists are an indicator of the bike-friendliness of our region, and bike friendliness encourages ridership. I suspect everyone knows by now that bicycling improves health, reduces road accidents, and lowers carbon emissions, so it's not hard to appreciate why we should encourage more of it. Read more.
City hall released more detailed plans for a fully separated, two-way bicycle path through downtown Monday complete with bike signals at the intersections. Between 99th Street and 107th Avenue, the bike path will share 102nd Avenue with the Valley Line LRT tracks and a single lane of traffic heading east. It’s expected to make cycling through downtown a lot easier. Read more.
“Physical inactivity is the biggest public health problem of the 21st century. Low fitness is at least as strong a predictor of mortality as any of the other risk factors, including smoking and obesity”. This warning, issued by Steven Blair, professor in the departments of Exercise Science and Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the University of South Carolina, is not to be taken lightly. Read more.
A bigger bike rack was all Brockville council needed to approve key zoning amendments paving the way for the Wall Street Village seniors’ development. That came after councillors backed an amendment reinstating an earlier requirement to include 12 bicycle parking spaces in the agreement – a provision opponents considered unnecessary and even absurd. Read more.
Staff presented the new pocket-sized, fold-out bike routes map to City Council on Tuesday, which is meant to help encourage active transportation in the city. These maps highlight bike routes in the City road rights-of-way as well as the trails through different City parks that you can explore. Read more.
Tameera Mohamed and her sisters were riding their bikes topless this past Friday and were stopped twice by police. The first time it was a woman officer, who did not acknowledge they were topless, but simply warned them to be careful while riding through a construction area near the downtown core. Mohamed says the second time they were stopped was on Shanley Street, and that they were told to cover up, and that what they were doing was illegal. Read more.
One of the city's busiest roadways in Thunder Bay will be getting a new pedestrian bridge this summer. Golf Links Road is being twinned — and part of that involves the construction of foot bridges over the McIntyre River. Read more.
Thursday, August 6, 2015
Motorists woke up one mid-70s morning to find new one-way streets made direct crosstown journeys impossible by car. Forty years later Groningen boasts two-thirds of all trips made by bike … and the cleanest air of any big Dutch city. Read more.
Side impact- and turn-related crash rates are lowest at intersections where average lane widths are between 10 and 10.5 feet, according to a study presented at the Canadian Institute of Transportation’s annual meeting last month. This challenges the long-held, but often disputed, assumption that wider lanes are safer. Read more.
The asphalt of Wellington Street West in Ottawa looks strikingly different these days, thanks to an effort by city staff to keep cyclists protected as they ride through the dense, occasionally unpredictable corridor. To quote the Ottawa Community News, it’s a paint job that looks “busy.” It’s also an addition to Ottawa infrastructure that’s receiving mixed reviews. Read more.
Work on Pembroke's waterfront boardwalk is nearing completion, with organizers confident it will be ready for its official unveiling on Monday. Since mid-July, a crew of 20 students from Algonquin College's pre-apprenticeship construction trades program have been busy tearing up the old boards and building the new walkway, working right up into Friday evening to ensure everything will be ready for the Aug. 3 community celebration. Read more.
Cycling has become part of the urban landscape as a convenient and environmentally-friendly alternative to public transport in congested cities. But as more professionals take to two wheels, cycling accessories have become a boon market with enthusiasts spending more on clothing and fixtures than they did on the bikes themselves. Read more.
On Thursday morning, Prince George MLAs Shirley Bond, Mike Morris and Transportation Minister Todd Stone announced the provincial government was contributing $250,000 to improving bike lanes in the city. The money will match a municipal investment towards improving street markings and signs along the roughly 36 kilometres of cycling lanes throughout Prince George. Read more.
Saskatoon’s enclosed bike lanes have been open for several weeks now, but opinions still seem to be divided on the project. While some tout increased safety for both drivers and cyclists as a benefit, others say that the location of the biking area is a detraction. Read more.
Mayor John Tory, federal Transportation Minister Lisa Raitt and Councillor Rob Ford were on hand Thursday afternoon as the $85-million tunnel was officially opened. Tory called it “the first of its kind in the country.” Read more.
Two public works projects in Winnipeg have received awards from the Canadian Public Works Association. The Disraeli Active Transportation Bridge and the city’s Public Works East Yard Complex were singled out during a ceremony on Friday. Read more.
Cyclists in Munich could enjoy a safer, faster commute thanks to plans to build new ‘bike Autobahns’ across the city - a network of 14 two-way segregated lanes, unsullied by crossroads or traffic lights. Read more.
A Winnipeg councillor says he "can't tolerate" the way in which a cycling and pedestrian strategy was pushed through city council last month. Three critics — including Coun. Russ Wyatt, Coun. Ross Eadie and Coun. Jason Schreyer — felt so spurned by how council passed the 20-year, $334-million active transportation plan that they've sought legal advice hoping to urge council to consider a re-vote. Read more.
Skateboarders and scooter riders will receive complimentary admission to the Ward Skatepark on weekdays in August and the first few days of September. “We are excited to once again offer skateboarding to our young citizens who have expressed a desire to have a safe place to practice their sport this summer,” says Adam Rutherford, project manager of Youth Services at the City of Guelph. Read more.
Thunder Bay’s first buffered bike lane and protected multi-use trail is now open on Arundel Street.
Located on the north side of the street, the buffered bike lane is identified by a double-white line with diagonal hatch markings in it. Read more.
Located on the north side of the street, the buffered bike lane is identified by a double-white line with diagonal hatch markings in it. Read more.
Ethel Street is a key north/south active transportation route. Improvements will include a separated “cycle track” on both sides of the road, new sidewalks, landscaping and utilities improvements. As cycling and other wheeled modes of transportation continue to increase, separating uses for the recreational cyclists, commuter cyclists and motorists helps ensure a safer and more enjoyable experience. Read more.
It’s well documented that the past decade has shown a precipitous decline in driving rates amongst millennials — fewer kids are graduating with licences, and those of them with licences are driving less. Car manufacturers are alarmed. City planners are confused. Driving culture is threatened. But should we be so concerned? Read more.
The city plans to start painting bike lanes on part of Cathcart Boulevard late this September, paving the way for more “active transportation,” a city planner says. “It's going to be something new to the City of Sarnia,” said Mike Berkvens, city development manager. Read more.
Thunder Bay - Arundel Street active transportation routes to include more protection from vehicle traffic
The city’s mobility coordinator sees Arundel Street as a potential sign of the future for active transportation. By the end of the summer the north side roadway will be the first in Thunder Bay to feature both a buffered bike lane as well as a physically protected two-way multi-use recreational trail. Read more.
Transport Futures invites you to join us on September 17 as we explore The Future of the Car! This timely conference will focus on the shift from vehicle ownership to vehicle sharing and what “transportation as a service” will mean for the public and private sectors in the years ahead – especially given emerging technologies and government policies related to roads, transit, parking and urban growth management. Read more.