September is coming, and it will bring more discussion about future bike routes in our community. In June, Council adopted a new approach to public engagement for bike routes that means your input will have more impact on decisions about the location and design of these routes. The new approach launched this spring, with sessions to seek input on a downtown bike route that would use either 102 Avenue or 103 Avenue.
Almost 800 people participated online and at the public input sessions at both the Downtown and Strathcona sessions. There was great conversation about safety and the desire for bike routes to be physically separated from cars and pedestrians. And there was talk about balance. Participants thought bike route design should have as little impact as possible on other forms of transportation.
I am committed to seeing the bike route project move forward. Many people in our community have walking or cycling lifestyles, which makes bike routes a natural fit. Edmonton is growing fast and we won’t be able to build enough traffic lanes to meet future demand. Investments in projects like the LRT are needed, and we also need bike infrastructure. Cycling will never be as popular as driving or LRT, but there are people that choose to cycle, and there will be more if we make it an easier and more comfortable choice.
The project team will announce the recommended route in September, and in October another round of engagement will gather feedback on options for design within the recommended route. I encourage everyone to get involved.