Bicycle Politics it’s everywhere

Cycling seems to be everywhere the last week of so … politics in particular.

We have a new liberal premier, Kathleen Wynne, who happened to have lived in the Netherlands for a few years and apparently used a bicycle for daily transportation (like everyone else in that country). I’m curious if we’ll hear more on that story, and if her experience will impact her government’s actions on active transportation.

Before I go on, just a reminder to submit your feedback on Ontario’s Cycling Strategy. It’s a mess but the more they hear from us cyclists the better chance the government will listen.

I came across an interesting article in the Record on the activities of Kitchener’s Cycling Advisory Committee. Talks about how dangerous King Street is downtown Kitchener now that they’ve narrowed the lanes and the need for cycling sharrows to encourage cyclists to take the lane and for motorists to aware that it’s a shared roadway. I like it. I remember riding down King street and taking the lane right in front of a police cruiser and wondering if I was going to get a lecture (I think it was a critical mass ride).  Motorists need all the reminders they can get, check out this video encounter (language warning).

The Kitchener post had an interesting article talking about how it’s a priority to fix the disaster that is the Iron Horse Trail railway crossing near Victoria park. It’s interesting that it was the cities idea to put the deadly barricades in front of the crossing to make it safer for cyclists.  I shake my head with anger every time I bike through that death trap. Interesting how in the winter the barricades are opened to allow the snowplow through. Can’t wait to see what they come up with. I hope to God someone designs the crossing who actually rides a bicycle.

About Graham Roe

A four season commuter sans l'auto, switching up my commute between running and biking. I love my toys, but hate spending hard earned cash to get them and precious time tinkering with them - get me durable performant gear, so I can have my next adventure! Catch me on http://waterloobikes.ca
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4 Responses to Bicycle Politics it’s everywhere

  1. JC says:

    So much good news in one day… it’s hard to handle. =)

  2. Ryan says:

    I was skeptical of Wynne but favoured her over the one from Windsor…Nice to know she lived in the Netherlands and cycled there!
    I heard that she already indicated in an interview right after winning, she would look into road tolls and congestion fees for the GTA!

    Despite being necessary this could be a killer in an election since Hudak (and even Horwath) will play up a war on cars.
    Even though the NDP tried to come off as more pro-bike, I find Horwath is far too pro-car (wanting cheaper insurance, gas etc.)

    I looked a few weeks back on all the candidates and only found Glen Murray to be more favourable to cyclists, so hopefully I just overlooked Wynne.

    If I vote for one of the “big three” it looks like it would be the Liberals…But mostly by default. Don’t trust Hudak or Horwath.

  3. clasher says:

    The city of Kitchener really dropped the ball on the Wilson Street thing in 2012 as far as I’m concerned… they had all year to do it and no one can even say why it didn’t get done. Here’s a hint: no one at city hall really gives two shits about the cycling master plan. Even putting up the contraflow lanes on Nyberg didn’t get done and that’s just a day job for one crew, really.

    I’ve thought about welding the gates on the iron horse open as an act of protest but I’m sure I’d get ratted out and it would only serve the anti-cycling brigade another reason not to spend on “us”. Besides I’d rather see them actually fix it properly.

    I hope the signage that they erect along the trail is prominent and visible, and consistent with existing methods of signing bicycle routes. I wonder how what routing they’ve picked for connecting Nyberg to Wilson Street.

    I’d even like to see some low-level lighting installed along the dark stretches of the Iron Horse trail and that trail at the end of Wilson will need some too, and perhaps an emergency phone or two like the ones common on UW’s campus, it’s a bit of a lonely area at night.

  4. Graham Roe says:

    I feel like all the municipal levels have dropped the ball. All the hoopla for the Davenport road diet and the Bike Box still hasn’t been painted, bowling for cyclists.

    @clasher –> Agree with you, Victoria lake isn’t too far away and those posts would sink. And with respect to lighting, Waterloo while redoing some of the sewers in Waterloo Park this past summer installed a permanent light by the Bridge which also sheds light on the pathway the crosses the railroad tracks. If Waterloo can do it, so can Kitchener!

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