Burrard Bridge Decision
The City of Vancouver has now decided to close one sidewalk to pedestrians and make it one way for cyclists, and close one traffic lane to general purpose traffic for the use of cyclists in the other direction. I was going to write a lot on this but I think I will simply cut and paste the following, which Anthony Perl sent to the Livable Region List, so obviously he expects it to be published widely
Below is a copy of my letter to councillors Reimer and Meggs. This was Vision’s chance to demonstrate their ability to make Vancouver the ‘greenest city’ and they failed the test. But failing one test can enhance anybody’s education if s/he is willing to learn from the experience. It will be up to the public to teach our municipal leaders what sustainable transportation really means, and how to achieve it.
Dear Andrea and Geoff,
I was deeply disappointed by your decision to remove pedestrian space from the Burrard Bridge during the upcoming bike lane trial. Instead of showing leadership in making Vancouver’s transportation more sustainable, Vision Vancouver has endorsed an inane compromise that penalizes the city’s most effective sustainable transport option – walking.
Vancouver’s pedestrian volume has been growing steadily over the past decade – faster than bicycle traffic and it is incredible to me that Vision councillors would risk a proven contribution to making our city the ‘greenest in the world’ in order to appease motorists and the road gang. This kind of political ‘triangulation’ is what has positioned our society on an ecological precipice. I had thought that Vision would be able to move us away from the brink, but I my confidence in your leadership is now shaken.
Professor and Director
Urban Studies Program
Simon Fraser University at Harbour Centre
#2111 – 515 West Hastings Street
Vancouver, BC V6B 5K
Miro was probably right. This is another experiment that will fail – but in this case I suspect it was designed to fail.