Write BC's Leaders for More Cycling Funding

While there has been investment by all levels of government in cycling routes in communities around the Province over the last decade, often these routes are not connected to each other leaving you stranded with your bike at busy intersections. Many destinations are still not served by safe comfortable convenient cycling connections. Until people can cycle from anywhere to anywhere without worrying if there is a good bicycle route, many won’t chose to ride a bicycle and we will not realize the full economic, health, environmental and social benefits from the hundreds of millions of dollars already invested in cycling.

Inadequate Funding for Communities

Communities across the province have produced extensive cycling network plans. Unfortunately, due to lack of funding, these cycling networks may not be complete for 20 to 30 years. For instance:

  • Surrey has recently completed a cycling plan that includes over 470 km of additional bike lanes and paths. With current funding, it plans on completing around 12km per year but has indicated that additional funding from the provincial and Federal Governments would speed implementation of the plan.
  • The Pedestrian & Cycling Master Plan – Capital Regional District estimated the cost of upgrading the bicycle network to attract people of all ages and abilities is around $275 million.
  • TransLink has estimated that completing all ages cycling networks around the region may be much higher than $800 million. Due to lack of new funding sources, in 2013, TransLink only invested $2 million.

Decades of Underinvestment

A large expenditure on cycling facilities is required to make up ground lost through several decades of underinvestment . The Netherlands, widely hailed as the world leader in cycling, spends approximately $40 per person per year on cycling. Several other jurisdictions with cycling levels similar to that of BC are matching or exceeding that level of investment. London Mayor Johnson recently announced he will increase  cycling funding to $619 million over the next three years.

Cost Effective

No other transportation investment of similar size can boast the potential to be enjoyed by people of all ages and income brackets, in communities large and small, throughout the province. High quality cycling facilities that are attractive to a significant portion of the population such as bicycle paths and separated bicycle lanes can cost from $1 million to $4 million per km (1/6 the cost of one km of road network for motorized vehicles). This investment will enable the construction of hundreds of kilometres of high quality facilities in communities around the province, giving the majority of British Columbians access to great bicycle routes.

Everyone Benefits

Importantly, cycling facilities also benefit those who don’t ride a bicycle. Multi-use paths are used by pedestrians, in-line skaters, electric wheelchairs, personal mobility scooters, and skateboards. Traffic calming along bicycle routes benefits neighbourhoods, making streets safer for all pedestrians. But it has particular benefit for seniors, children, and the disabled. Bike lanes along busy streets calm traffic, enhancing the pedestrian environment and creating a more welcoming retail atmosphere.

Accelerated Investment

In our Cycling Strategy. we recommend a significant acceleration of the investment in cycling networks including bicycle paths, separated bicycle lanes and other high quality bicycle facilities totalling $175 million per year by all levels of government. This investment in infrastructure, accompanied by funding for education, promotion, and end-of-trip facilities, will enable residents and visitors of all ages and abilities to safely and conveniently cycle throughout the province, fostering healthier individuals and communities.

Take Action

We encourage the Provincial Government to show strong leadership by committing $100 per year for cycling and walking networks in communities around B.C.

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Let the Leaders Know You Want Increased Cycling Investment
Tell them what the problems and solutions are in your community and what better cycling would mean for your family and friends.

Showing 111 reactions

  • commented 2017-08-20 22:30:13 -0700
    Hi there

    I’m a recent convert to cycling as both a way to get to work and as a weekend pastime. Here in the Comox Valley we are severely lacking the infastructure to do this safety. Time for some investment in bike Lanes and safe cycling routes

    I also just returned from a weekend cycling trip on Saltspring island. I was shocked to see only a few hundred meters of cycling Lanes and they were covered on gravel probably from the winter!

    This province is way behind the times…
  • commented 2017-08-20 15:14:10 -0700
    The NDP need a clearer policy on cycling in line with the Greens.
  • commented 2017-08-18 09:27:41 -0700
    It has been two and a half years since my bike accident. I was doored on my ride in to work one morning. It was sudden and devastating. It occurred on a seemingly quite street in downtown Victoria. The recent opening of the separated bike lane on Fort Street is a great start but not nearly sufficient to protect the impressive number of bike commuters and other cyclists in the city.

    If this government is committed to taking action against climate change, to moving towards a preventative health care model and to supporting struggling families, an investment in cycling infrastructure sends the right message on all three fronts. Cycling is a low cost, emission free and exceptionally healthy mode of transportation!

    I hope your government will consider my request. You should also note that my concerns are not limited to the City of Victoria. I actually commute through three different municipalities and the inconsistency between the quality of infrastructure is another source of frustration. I have contacted local governments on this issue as well but sincerely hope that the provincial government will also do its part – ultimately funding for local government will need to come from you.

    Thank you.
  • commented 2017-08-13 18:31:51 -0700
    Please quadruple the Bike BC/pathways grant funding to the cost of a single interchange, ~50 million per year.

    Please include cycling skills in elementary school curriculums at the age when children are learning to bicycle (5-8 years old).

    Please include a cycling theory and practial cycling onstreet test in motor vehicle driver licensing.

    Please change the legislation for motor vehicle insurance to strict liability for collisions with vulnerable users, pedestrians/cyclists/etc. The analogy is WorkSafeBC for workplace injuries. This is especially important with the coming autonomous vehicles.
  • commented 2017-08-08 17:30:13 -0700
    Please make funding available to Municipalities so they can make local decisions on active transportation, which is the most efficient way to give citizens choice in their daily active transportation plans. The most effective way to reduce CHG’s is to encourage citizens to cycle commute one day each week. Pretty attainable I’d say. Bike paths and protected bike lanes encourage 8 to 80. Ages at which biking is possible and encouraged, if safe!
  • commented 2017-08-07 19:26:52 -0700
    I live in PG and am an active member of our local cycling club. Our roads do not support safe cycling routes. Our roads need more consistent shoulders and safer cycling routes.
  • commented 2017-08-07 16:49:40 -0700
    A bigger effort needs to be made in improving cycling infrastructures throughout our province. I live in Mission, am an avid cyclist in my late 60’s. There is not one bike path in my community. Even separated lined road shoulders are usually only on one side of the street making it useless if riding in the opposite direction. No effort has been made to improving this.

    I fully support more funding, particularly at the municipal levels, for cycling infrastructures. The health benefits derived from making It easier for people to ride their bikes would pay back huge dividends in deceased health care costs.
  • commented 2017-08-06 05:47:17 -0700
    Let’s make walking and cycling as safe and accessible as we have made driving. It’s better gor everyone when people come before cars.
  • commented 2017-08-05 15:34:03 -0700
    I am looking forward to long-awaited change under our new BC government. I have lived my entire adult like until now under a Liberal majority government that did not represent or serve me. While I realize there is a lot that needs to be addressed in our province, I hope you will make increased investment in active transportation (cyling, walking, and public transit) a priority. Projects around the world (e.g. car-free squares and bike lanes in New York and bus rapid transit in Bogota) have shown that improvements can be made relatively cheaply and quickly, with wide-ranging and immediate benefits (improved health, reduced congestion, reduced emissions, happier citizens).

    Cycling, in particular, is an efficient, healthy, cost-effective mode of transportation that can be used by a majority of the population (that’s right – children, women, rich, poor!). If the BC government invested $100 million a year to towards cycling in this province, I am confident the results would be positive, especially in the longer-term.

    I live in the riding of Vancouver-Hastings and ride an electric bike to work at UBC (a 32km round-trip) most days of the week (for my other trips, I use a regular bicycle or public transit – my partner and I do not own a car, nor do most people we know). I get to work faster and more reliably this way than I would by any other method. However, even with Vancouver’s relatively good cycling infrastructure, I have to share space with cars (parked and moving) for much of the journey, which leads to some stressful conflicts. But if the infrastructure were more welcoming to bikes, and if electric bikes were made more affordable by a PST exemption, I am certain more and more people would join me.

    I look forward to seeing what changes this new government brings to the area of active transportation.
  • commented 2017-08-05 09:47:54 -0700
    I urge the new NDP/Green BC government to devote increased resources to creating streets for all ages and abilities through investing more in bicycle, pedestrian and transit infrastructure throughout BC.
  • commented 2017-08-04 22:40:36 -0700
    Please pay attention to the ways to improve cycling safety in BC and Canada. Reduce speed limits where cyclist and motor vehicles interact. Rewrite the MVA to recognize cycling as a preferred mode of transport. Ensure areas where cyclist should ride are cleared of debris (Hwy shoulders are rarely cleared of rocks and other items that are hazardous to cyclist). I have to ride on the white line at the edge of the traffic lane on the Pat Bay Hwy, and the trucks pass within a foot at a speed difference of over 60 kph. Street cleaning is important. A cut tire from glass can put a cyclist down in the line of traffic. Employ a full time person to cycle around and identify preferred routs and hazards. Ensure motorist that deliberately endanger/cause injury to cyclist, are charge with criminal intent.

    These are just a few ideas to encourage cycling, and help improve our safety. The only bad thing about cycling is the risk of being hit by a car or truck. All investments in cycling pay back in health care.
  • commented 2017-08-04 16:23:09 -0700
    I am signing the petition to remove the PST and Add Rebates for E-bikes. If there are rebates/incentive to purchase eco-friendly cars then there needs to be an incentive for other forms of eco-friendly transportation other than cars
  • commented 2017-08-04 14:41:49 -0700
    A bike lane from the Langdale Ferry Terminal to lower Gibsons would be a great start for cycling infrastructure on the Sunshine Coast. This would allow my young teen to cycle safely into the town of Gibsons to go to the library, meet friends, have an ice cream etc.
    A connection from lower to upper Gibsons would allow him to cycle to school which would be a great way to promote independence and fitness.

    In addition a bike lane would increase the chances of my wife using her bicycle to go into town as the current road is narrow and dangerous.

    A cycling lane would also draw tourists on BICYCLES from Vancouver and would be a shot in the arm for the local economy.
  • commented 2017-08-03 22:35:06 -0700
    Cycling is a means of improving health and wellness and reducing carbon emissions. Any support he government of BC can give for supporting protected bike lanes is good for the people, the economy and the lands of this province. I encourage you to support infrastructure that encourages the use of bicycles throughout our province.
  • commented 2017-08-03 14:25:57 -0700
    Congratulations on your new jobs as leaders of BC! I feel honoured to have been a part of this historic win and am feeling optimistic about the future of our province.

    I am especially excited about this amazing opportunity for BC to become a national (and is it too ambitious to think internationally?) leader in having strong, robust, and practical cycling infrastructure for our cities and towns.

    I can’t begin to list all the ways that cycling has improved my life — physically, mentally, emotionally, and socially. It has been said many times before by people who are more eloquent, more educated, more experienced than I. But I do know that having protected bike lanes, and other cycle-friendly infrastructure, will contribute to making me a more eloquent, educated, and experienced person by virtue of helping ensure that I live longer.

    When I cycle on non-protected bike lanes or streets with no cycling amenities, I feel like my life is in immediate danger. My breathing gets faster, my heart rate goes up (even though I am by no means pedaling faster), and sometimes a mental image of my mother’s face when she hears of me getting into a serious bike accident flashes before my eyes. Biking to work or school should not mean I am risking my life, or feeling unsafe on streets that my tax dollars pay for.

    When I am driving on streets that do not have protected bike lanes or anything to accomodate cyclists, I feel like their life and my conscience and insurance rates are in immediate danger. My breathing also gets faster, my heart rate goes up, and sometimes a mental image of me standing over a seriously injured cyclist flashes before my mind’s eye. Driving around my city should not mean that I am worrying about the safety of my fellow community members, or that I might accidentally hit and seriously injure someone.

    It makes sense from an economic to public health to environmental standpoints to invest heavily in cycling infrastructure. This is the time. Who knows how long the NDP and Green parties will be in power in BC. Make it part of your legacy to build a strong network of protected bike lanes in BC’s cities and towns.

    Thank you for reading this and I look forward to biking on the bike paths built by the Green-NDP government soon.
  • commented 2017-08-03 00:03:48 -0700
    Tragically, a cyclist died riding his bike across North Vancouver (Keith Road) several days ago. This occurred along a route that I ride several days a week. It demonstrates that we have a long way to go toward safe, reliable, and direct cycling infrastructure in our city. In order for more people to embrace this inexpensive, carbon free mode of travel, it needs to be safe. More investment and leadership is needed.
  • commented 2017-08-02 19:04:08 -0700
    Sir I’m writing to see if you have time to look at a digital bike registration and recovery system in use by 26 police departments in BC. I have meet with liberal mlas and the solicitor general last year but got no results. We have zero funding and have registered 60,000 bikes in the past year 1.5 years. We have lowered bike theft 30 percent in the lower mainland on a shoestring budget but this is not sustainable. Would love some assistance. Please check us out a project 529
  • commented 2017-08-02 18:12:01 -0700
    Our Province needs to dramatically increase investment in cycling infrastructure. Less than 1 % of transportation infrastructure spending is on cycling, and yet, over 2 % of trips Provincialy are by bicycle. In cities like Vancouver, over 7 % of trips are by bicycle. Vancouver was able to achieve a large increase in cycling after a commitment to increased cycle infrastructure funding. To help achieve our Provincial GHG emission reduction targets and improve public health, we need to greatly increase investment to expand the quality and extent of cycle infrastructure.

    I support the BC Cycling Coalition’s call for $100 million dollars annual investment in cycling infrastructure.

    In addition to increased investment, the Province of BC must help municipalities implement motorised traffic calming measures. Not all streets require cycle specific infrastructure. Reducing motorised traffic speeds and volumes can create safe cycling conditions on local streets. Help municipalities achieve this by cost sharing in traffic calming measures.

    Together with supportive policies and a legal environment that encourages active transportation, large investments in cycle infrastructure will go a long way towards reducing traffic risks for our most vulnerable road users while increasing cycling participation.

    Thank you.
  • commented 2017-08-02 08:08:42 -0700
    There also needs to be a comprehensive post-winter road sweeping of the sand that never seems to get blown off the bike/pedestrian lanes. It’s dangerous to breathe let alone wipe out on. Same goes for intersections – safe cycling shouldn’t be such an afterthought in highway maintenance.
  • commented 2017-08-02 00:05:42 -0700
    Dear John Horgan, Andrew Weaver and Rich Coleman.

    I am writing to reiterate the need to invest in protected bike lanes in Vancouver proper and surrounding areas. At this point I can’t bike from Vancouver to White Rock to visit my father without needing to take a shuttle through the Massey Tunnel and ultimately be on a number of extremely car heavy roads, and even along highways, where there is great risk to bikers cycling alongside cars.

    Aside from this simple example, the positive externalities experienced by all for investing $100 million/year in bike paths are unlimited. Protected bike lanes mean more people biking. This opens up options for people to commute to work, run errands, visit friends or family, or simply go out for a pleasurable bike ride.

    Whatever the reason when people in my community get out and bike more this transcends into improved health, less bills for the hospitals and federal/provincial government, less stress on individuals as shown through research of drivers and resulting increased anxiety, better sleep due to increased exercise, less bills for gas/car/insurance etc – which leads to increased spending in other sectors depending on income level, and the big one: improved air quality for our community (and ultimately this planet). These positive externalities are literally limitless and one could go on for a very long time regarding how being physically active and safe while doing so is nothing but positive. Additionally, making bike lanes protected allows family and friends to bike together, builds stronger friend and family bonds and improves an overall sense of community.

    Have you been to Amsterdam? Have you commuted to work for a month in Vancouver? Have you ever nearly been hit by a car WHILE IN YOUR CAR? This becomes much more serious while on a bike and even more terrifying. I urge everyone to commute via bike for one month. Alternatively, travel to a country where commuting via bike on protected bike paths is simply a way of life.

    Lastly, would you want your mother, grandmother, son, daughter or wife to be riding their bike down 1st avenue, hastings, how about west 4th – beside cars, city busses, garbage trucks, semi trucks – the whole gamut, and possibly just inches away from their handlebars? The answer is a clear: at the end of the day, there is no price on safety. When people feel safe and know that they are protected from cars while riding their bikes it makes the choice to commute using a bike an easy one.

    So, let’s improve the opportunity for safe cycling in this city – and around BC and with this a whole lot of benefits (positive externalities) will follow.

    I look forward to seeing progressive action where solutions for long term growth, improved health, and strengthened communities occurs. Here’s to a future filled with safe rides on two wheels.

    Katrina Boucher

    (Local bike rider in Vancouver)
  • commented 2017-08-01 15:27:21 -0700
    Dear Mr. Horgan, Mr. Coleman and Mr. Weaver,

    I’m excited that the NDP, now in government, promised during the election campaign that they will be “committed to making cycling, walking and other forms of active transportation safer and more accessible, and…. will work with communities to determine what investments are needed.”. The Green Party has made similar promises, recognizing the importance of transportation choices with a low carbon footprint.

    I urge you to act on these promises without any further delay, and to start working on an Active Transportation Plan, which would include walking and cycling as cleaner and more sustainable transportation options.

    As part of a plan to improve transportation options, increased investment is essential. I strongly support the proposal of the BC Cycling Coalition to commit to an investment of $100 million per year in bike paths and protected bike lanes.

    As someone who has grown up in the Netherlands and has also lived in Canada for several decades, I have seen both worlds: one that’s very car-dependent, and one that encourages people to walk and bike for many of their trips, by seriously planning for and investing in cycling and walking as an integral part of the entire transportation puzzle. It’s clear that the latter has many benefits, such as happier people, improved physical and mental health, improved livability of cities, reduced greenhouse gas emissions, reduced air and noise pollution, reduced need for parking, and a more equitable transportation system that works for all ages and abilities.

    I live in the suburbs in Vancouver (Maple Ridge). Sometimes people say cycling doesn’t work in the suburbs, because sometimes the distances are too long, and sometimes there are just too many hills. However, the e-bike has huge potential. In countries such as the Netherlands, more than one in every four bikes purchased is now an e-bike. That is possible when the infrastructure makes people of all ages and abilities feel safe and welcome. Time to get to work!

    With kind regards,

    Jackie Chow

    23708 110B Ave.

    Maple Ridge, BC V2W 2E2
  • commented 2017-08-01 14:49:00 -0700
    I would like to encourage you to take a look at the Motor Vehicle Act and the requirements for the mandatory space a driver must leave when passing a cyclist. I believe that in Ontario it is law that a driver must leave a one meter buffer between the car and cyclist when passing. i believe that we need this law in BC to protect the safety of cyclists.

    Thank you for your consideration.
  • commented 2017-08-01 12:21:00 -0700
    I’ve seen an entirely new side of Vancouver since I started taking advantage of the growing number of bike-friendly lanes. These lanes let cyclists move around the city more quickly and safely without having to negotiate shared space with other users. This actually benefits drivers and pedestrians due to the clear delineation of space that allows the three groups to anticipate each others’ positions and intentions.

    Cycling seems to really be taking off in Vancouver and I can only think this helps our image as a tourist destination for highly desirable visitors and as a source of pride for local residents who live in such a progressive town. It’s a bold step to make investments in a place where traffic seems to be worsening, but at the mountain top level it can only be the right strategy to changing people’s habits.

    I fully support continued investment in public transit as well as dedicated bicycle and pedestrian routes.
  • commented 2017-08-01 08:54:12 -0700
    There is a growing number of bicycle touring tourists ready to spend money here in BC, the numbers could grow much more with better infrastructure. A safe loop such as the sunshine coast and old island highway would be great but needs improvement to be safer. It was built for cars.
  • commented 2017-08-01 07:13:43 -0700
    We need much more investment in cycling, walking, and transit. Not only will these directly improve the health of those commuters but it will improve the health of people who have to drive by decreasing congestion. Less time stuck in traffic means less stress, less pollution, less time sitting.
  • commented 2017-08-01 07:02:07 -0700
    When the off ramp to Highlands in Langford was widened to two lanes some years ago, the Liberals couldnt be bothered to build an underpass for cyclists. With two lanes of jetfighter-speed rush hour traffic pouring onto the off ramp, they should have removed the “bike crossing” sign. The highway is effectively blocked to cyclists at that point and still needs an underpass. Given the massive growth in Langford, bicycle commuting has to be a viable option. I ride 365 days a year, and just retired an ebike with 25,000 km on the motor. Note also that my bike is NOT a recreational item and needs to be covered by disaster assistance.
  • commented 2017-08-01 07:02:05 -0700
    When the off ramp to Highlands in Langford was widened to two lanes some years ago, the Liberals couldnt be bothered to build an underpass for cyclists. With two lanes of jetfighter-speed rush hour traffic pouring onto the off ramp, they should have removed the “bike crossing” sign. The highway is effectively blocked to cyclists at that point and still needs an underpass. Given the massive growth in Langford, bicycle commuting has to be a viable option. I ride 365 days a year, and just retired an ebike with 25,000 km on the motor. Note also that my bike is NOT a recreational item and needs to be covered by disaster assistance.
  • commented 2017-08-01 00:07:22 -0700
    the more we cycle the less footprint we leave.
  • commented 2017-07-31 21:14:55 -0700
    I believe it is in BC’s best interest to eliminate sales tax on all new bikes and make bike lanes and pedestrian improvements a priority.
  • commented 2017-07-31 14:09:48 -0700
    Please do all that you can to encourage British Columbians to walk, cycle and use transit instead of driving their own vehicles! There are many ways of doing this, but my top two suggestions are to invest in SAFE CYCLING options, and to close the Vancouver downtown core to private vehicles -

    I am very pleased that you have formed government, and I wish you well in the coming years.

A Billion for Bikes - Cycling for Everyone Petition

I call upon the Government of BC to enable everyone in BC to cycle & walk in safety as part of their daily lives by implementing an Active Transportation Strategy that includes:

  • Investing $1 billion over the next ten years to:
    • Upgrade cycling & walking facilities on provincial roads & bridges
    • Complete cycling & walking networks in communities across BC
    • Provide safe routes to school for children
    • Build trails & routes for cycling & walking tourism
  • Ensuring that paths & protected bike lanes can be safely shared by people using wheelchairs, skateboards & in-line skates
  • Enhancing cycling education for children & adults
  • Promoting cycling & walking
  • Encouraging electric bike use by eliminating the PST & providing rebates
798 needed to reach 6,000

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